Fether

Church policy change on same sex marriage

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6 minutes ago, MrShorty said:

But, is moving towards chaos sinful? 

It isn't the label that matters, but whether the action moves us forward in the plan of progression, or not.  Chaos, by its very nature, is contrary to the gospel plan.

6 minutes ago, MrShorty said:

This feels almost like we are back to the beginning --

That is because there really wasn't much of a change, contrary to what many have supposed. By no stretch of the imagination was the policy change a "step towards SAme-gender temple marriage" as erroneously believed, any more that heterosexual adultery and fornication were  already a step closer to heavenly legitimization.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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3 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

Depends, methinks.

If I have the raging desire to murder you consuming my thoughts -- but in the end I don't act on it -- am I really free of sin?

The idea seems ludicrous to me. I don't know how it is that this idea is so common.

If our very thoughts will condemn us, maybe it's time we move past the notion that only action on things matters.

 

this is the higher law. Clearly, not all are prepared to abide it.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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2 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

Depends, methinks.

If I have the raging desire to murder you consuming my thoughts -- but in the end I don't act on it -- am I really free of sin?

The idea seems ludicrous to me. I don't know how it is that this idea is so common.

If our very thoughts will condemn us, maybe it's time we move past the notion that only action on things matters.

That's a fair point. Christ was tempted in the Wilderness, but did not sin. Yet even lusting after a woman in your heart is sinful. There must be some degree of difference between being tempted and sinning in one's thoughts (although my life would be a whole lot better with the person who does not act on his murderous desire of course☺)

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Just now, Midwest LDS said:

There must be some degree of difference between being tempted and sinning in one's thoughts

I've debated this idea and the nuance of it at some length. Some things should be obvious. And yet....

As for myself, when I look at a woman and think... "aaahhh yeaaahhhh...." I know I have not been perfect in that response. I know I've objectified her. I know that's not the way Heavenly Father and Christ look at her. I know that I must repent.

Others can justify their imperfections as "not sin" all they want. I call bull.

When I'm perfect then I'll have no more cause to repent. Until then...

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3 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

I've debated this idea and the nuance of it at some length. Some things should be obvious. And yet....

As for myself, when I look at a woman and think... "aaahhh yeaaahhhh...." I know I have not been perfect in that response. I know I've objectified her. I know that's not the way Heavenly Father and Christ look at her. I know that I must repent.

Others can justify their imperfections as "not sin" all they want. I call bull.

When I'm perfect then I'll have no more cause to repent. Until then...

You and are of the same mind on this subject.

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15 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

What on earth is the point (from an LDS perspective) of a sexless homosexual marriage?

I'm not sure what the point is -- especially if limited to an LDS perspective. A couple of possible non-LDS perspectives that may be pertinent:

Next of kin type issues. A spouse has certain rights and privileges that a mere roommate may not be able to claim. Having an official marriage license is one way to help clear those kind of issues up.

Married couples sometimes have tax advantages.

More legal perspectives than church perspectives.

11 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

If I have the raging desire to murder you consuming my thoughts -- but in the end I don't act on it -- am I really free of sin?

The idea seems ludicrous to me. I don't know how it is that this idea is so common.

If our very thoughts will condemn us, maybe it's time we move past the notion that only action on things matters.

I think it is an interesting part of the discussion. The Church has officially said in a few places that attraction itself is not sin, but acting on those attractions is. I have not seen rigorous clarification on the gray areas in between feeling attraction and engaging in sexual behavior. It seems pretty clear in some scriptures that some of our thoughts and desires can condemn us, but I don't know where in between "I feel a sexual desire" and "I did a sexual thing" it goes from not-sin to sin.

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Guest MormonGator

Fight it out gentlemen. 

A homosexual living in celibacy has remarkable self control, dedication to the faith and discipline. Those are remarkable traits, and I'd be so proud to call them my brothers/sisters. 
 

Edited by MormonGator

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2 hours ago, MrShorty said:

I'm not sure what the point is -- especially if limited to an LDS perspective. A couple of possible non-LDS perspectives that may be pertinent:

Next of kin type issues. A spouse has certain rights and privileges that a mere roommate may not be able to claim. Having an official marriage license is one way to help clear those kind of issues up.

Married couples sometimes have tax advantages.

They could get all that by marrying a person of the opposite gender (or, in many states, via a civil union/domestic partnership that doesn’t presume to call itself a “marriage”).  And I presume you wouldn’t agree with a father and daughter who marry each other for tax reasons?

Adam is homosexual—meaning, by definition, that he is sexually attracted to men.  Adam “married” a man when he could have married a woman.  And Adam wants us to think his “marriage” has nothing—nothing!—to do with sex.  

Does Adam think we are stupid?

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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1 hour ago, MormonGator said:

Fight it out gentlemen. 

A homosexual living in celibacy has remarkable self control, dedication to the faith and discipline. Those are remarkable traits, and I'd be so proud to call them my brothers/sisters. 
 

I agree. We have a family friend in Florida, a Catholic, who has stayed celibate his entire life in order to follow the Saviour's commandments. I have great respect for him, and anyone else, who strives to follow the commandments despite powerful desires to do otherwise.

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5 minutes ago, Midwest LDS said:

 We have a family friend in Florida,

You can't trust Floridans dude! 

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5 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

You can't trust Floridans dude! 

I know, I know. It's basically America's basement where we keep our undesirables locked up away from normal society. But, very occasionally, one of them isn't as terrible as the others😉

Edited by Midwest LDS

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1 hour ago, MormonGator said:

Fight it out gentlemen. 

A homosexual living in celibacy has remarkable self control, dedication to the faith and discipline. Those are remarkable traits, and I'd be so proud to call them my brothers/sisters. 
 

I agree. I have love and compassion for those who decide they can't do that too.  I'm so grateful I never had to make that kind of choice. 

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4 hours ago, MormonGator said:
2 hours ago, LiterateParakeet said:

I agree. I have love and compassion for those who decide they can't do that too.  I'm so grateful I never had to make that kind of choice. 

A homosexual living in celibacy has remarkable self control, dedication to the faith and discipline. Those are remarkable traits, and I'd be so proud to call them my brothers/sisters. 
 

As someone who has been celibate for nearly a half century,, I can tell you that it isn't  worthy of high regard and admiration, but quite the opposite. We celibates, regardless of sexual orientation, have failed to keep the first command, and have put ourselves in jeopardy of defying the will of God by not positioning ourselves to become exalted as He is. It is essentially an act of selfishness that not only limits our own potential and denies us some of the greatest blessings, but may also negatively impact those spirits we could have brought into this world. I look back with sorrow and regret and humility rather than self-satisfaction and pride. My obedience in not committing sins of sexual commission are overshadowed by my sins of sexual omission.

But, that may just be my way of looking at it.

Thanks -Wade Engund-

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29 minutes ago, wenglund said:

As someone who has been celibate for nearly a half century,, I can tell you that it isn't  worthy of high regard and admiration, but quite the opposite. We celibates, regardless of sexual orientation, have failed to keep the first command, and have put ourselves in jeopardy of defying the will of God by not positioning ourselves to become exalted as He is. It is essentially an act of selfishness that not only limits our own potential and denies us some of the greatest blessings, but may also negatively impact those spirits we could have brought into this world. I look back with sorrow and regret and humility rather than self-satisfaction and pride. My obedience in not committing sins of sexual commission are overshadowed by my sins of sexual omission.

But, that may just be my way of looking at it.

Thanks -Wade Engund-

What an absolutely amazing commendable viewpoint. 

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26 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

What an absolutely amazing commendable viewpoint. 

I would agree were that viewpoint a rightful cause for positive change. At this point, it isn't with me--though that may say less about the commend-ability of the viewpoint,  and more about the condemn-abiltiy of me. I have quite a ways to go in meaningfully curtailing my selfishness and pride.  But, at least the honesty lets me know where I am at in relation to where I ought to be, so that when I finally get my stuff together, it will make it easier to set a course and fly--assuming time doesn't run out.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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10 hours ago, LiterateParakeet said:

I agree. I have love and compassion for those who decide they can't do that too.  I'm so grateful I never had to make that kind of choice. 

Amen. Agree totally. I can't imagine both living in celibacy or being forced to marry someone you aren't sexually attracted to. Both options sound horrific to me. 

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10 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

Amen. Agree totally. I can't imagine both living in celibacy or being forced to marry someone you aren't sexually attracted to. Both options sound horrific to me. 

To me as well, but I want to tell you guys about my friend.  I'll call him Ken, to  protect his privacy.

I have known Ken for a little over twenty years.  I met him when we were in the same ward together.  He served a mission and has remained living in the area.  We're still in the same ward now, and he's in my Dungeons & Dragons group as a regular player.  Ken has been struggling in life, a lot.  I think it has a lot to do with feeling lonely.  He isn't working at the moment, mostly because of health problems, he's back home staying with his parents, and he doesn't have a car anymore, which means we, as his circle of friends, sometimes give him a lift places.

Ken is an inspiration to me.  Why?  Well, because he's attracted to men, but he is incredibly philosophical about it.  He isn't defined by who he is attracted to.  He's defined by his goals, his hopes and his faith.  He struggles mightily with that and other challenges in his life, but he comes to church as often as he can, he participates in the discussions and meetings, he has a calling, and he says some of the wisest things I've ever heard.  When he first came to grips with his attractions, I'm pretty sure I was the first person in our circle of friends that he told about it, which felt like a very high honor to me.  Later, and I mean years later, he opened up about it to our group.

He still has hope of marrying a woman one day and having children.  He wants those things because he knows the joy they bring to those who are blessed to have them in their life.  My kids are friends with him too, and they love him.  Whenever he comes over for D&D they're happy to see him and he gets a hug goodnight too. 

Just this morning he texted me about an epiphany he had while reading scripture, about how hope comes first, then faith.  He quoted these verses in a discussion with someone on Facebook who felt that he should be out there indulging his sexual attractions and stop all this church stuff because the Church is to blame for every homosexual who commits suicide.  Ken's view is that depression like that comes more from false hopes and expectations than from denial of sin.  He finds his hope, not in the idea of the Church embracing homosexual behavior, but from the knowledge that through the Savior he can find the joy Heavenly Father wants him to have.   

I admire Ken, because he has a strength and a clarity of thinking that I can only be in awe of.  I've told him this and he reacted with humility.  Maybe I embarrassed him a little.  Well, I'm not sorry that he knows how highly I think of him.  Remember my story in the advice section about the fracturing of my D&D group?  One of the things all the progressives in our group share is a distaste for Ken personally.  They dislike him and had been pushing me to put him out of the group.  To them, giving him a lift to D&D was a burden they bore for a time then stopped.  To them, Ken's knowledge of the rules and willingness to correct people in-game is so off-putting that they asked to have him moved to the second group I was running at the time.  Funny how only the "tolerant" people seem to take issue with these things while the rest of us just take it in stride because we want Ken with us and we value him.  I have my own theory as to why they don't like him but that's a commentary for another time.

And yeah, Ken and I have had disagreements before.  We've had arguments.  Neither of us is perfect and we're both wildly opinionated... But that's how you know a friendship is the real deal.  You can have arguments with a friend and the next day they're still your friend. 

Yes, Ken struggles and yes, Ken is lonely... But at least he knows he's loved and valued, and he has a place in the world.  So while I agree with you guys that the idea of having to live celibately sounds horrific, I take inspiration from watching the way my friend Ken tackles it.

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8 hours ago, wenglund said:

I would agree were that viewpoint a rightful cause for positive change. At this point, it isn't with me--though that may say less about the commend-ability of the viewpoint,  and more about the condemn-abiltiy of me. I have quite a ways to go in meaningfully curtailing my selfishness and pride.  But, at least the honesty lets me know where I am at in relation to where I ought to be, so that when I finally get my stuff together, it will make it easier to set a course and fly--assuming time doesn't run out.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

There's no time like today.

Get to it man!

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9 hours ago, wenglund said:

At this point, it isn't with me--though that may say less about the commend-ability of the viewpoint,  and more about the condemn-abiltiy of me. I have quite a ways to go in meaningfully curtailing my selfishness and pride.

Condemning bad behavior and sin is itself commendable and even desirable. But don't condemn yourself, any more than you would condemn your neighbor for his weaknesses. Though you appear to be uncommonly courageous in your honest self-examination, you do not have a God's-eye view of things. Please don't let your rigorous honesty bleed over into self-condemnation. You should show yourself the same charity you would extend to others. Not sure how that's done, but that's certainly the path.

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I am inclined to believe that all the things we think are simple are in reality much more complex and all the things we think are too complex are simpler than we think.

In truth I have no other means to judge or understand anything except through my own eyes and heart.  Most of my experiences with those that claim same sex sexuality have been extremely negative.  I have some "friends" that are full out of the closet homosexuals - some that are striving as many of us are to be worthy Latter-day Saints.  I have encountered homosexuals that have every intent to abuse me or convince me that I should "try" homosexuality. 

My scientific background leads me to think that we cannot understand others or even ourselves without a clear understanding of what makes others or ourselves tick.  But most individuals lack the personal confidence (self-esteem) to be able to look deeply at the why.  Turning over the rocks of our deep self (sole) can be unpleasant and even terrifying. Most want to blame something outside themselves for what they think, believe, hope for and do – especially when we realize that we are flawed and we are all flawed.   There is a tendency to think we are justified despite our flaws or that we are enough good traits to offset our flaws.  As an engineer I have learned the lesson many times – that until you know what has gone wrong and why – nothing you do or try will ever even come close to fixing the problem.  We, as a society ought to be able to discuss things that are important – openly without name calling or condemnation.

There are some elements that I am convinced of that plague homosexuals at least the homosexuals I have encountered.

#1. They are quite fragile, especially with emotions and self-esteem.   There is a basic belief that they cannot be what they believe they should or what everybody should be.  They strongly believe they are “different”.  There is an attempt to adjust by believing they should be accepted as they are; not as what they ought to or should become.

#2. There is a strong propensity towards masturbation.   This propensity is so strong that I am inclined to believe there is a relation between self-sexuality and same sex sexuality.   I am not suggesting that everybody that masturbates will become homosexual but that everyone that is homosexual – masturbates. 

I am inclined to believe that masturbation and pornography are the two great plagues of our society.  But I believe that there is another evil or temptation that goes before these two.  This is the divine understanding of marriage and intimacy (sex) between a son and daughter of G-d.  I believe this is so misunderstood that many do not realize that a flaw in understanding that a man and woman complete each other – both physically and spiritually – that all sexual temptations and difficulties come from unrepented missunderstandings of the divine purpose of marriage and sexual relationships (law of chastity). 

 

The Traveler

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11 hours ago, wenglund said:

As someone who has been celibate for nearly a half century,, I can tell you that it isn't  worthy of high regard and admiration, but quite the opposite. We celibates, regardless of sexual orientation, have failed to keep the first command, and have put ourselves in jeopardy of defying the will of God by not positioning ourselves to become exalted as He is. 

I don't know why you are celibate, and I'm not asking.  I just want to say that if someone chooses to be celibate because they are LGBTQ, then I don't believe they have failed to keep the first commandment. I don't think an LGBTQ person should marry a heterosexual just to multiply and replenish the earth. Mixed orientation marriages have a higher divorce rate than other marriages.  

This is one of the reasons that God has told us not to make eternal judgments. We don't know enough about other people's lives to judge them, only God does. I trust His judgement will be right, even if they may be surprising.

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3 hours ago, unixknight said:

Yes, Ken struggles and yes, Ken is lonely... But at least he knows he's loved and valued, and he has a place in the world.  So while I agree with you guys that the idea of having to live celibately sounds horrific, I take inspiration from watching the way my friend Ken tackles it.

Unixknight, I'm glad that Ken is doing well and is inspiring to you and perhaps others as well. You realize though that this is ONE story. Right?  

I could tell you a story about a married friend who is blissfully happy in marriage and such an inspiration. But we would not conclude from that that all married people are blissfully happy. 

Each individual works out their path the best they can. For my part, I simply try to love those who "sin differently than I do."  

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Guest MormonGator
11 minutes ago, LiterateParakeet said:

. Mixed orientation marriages have a higher divorce rate than other marriages.  

 

Yup, and I can't blame them for failing. After all, would you (generic) want to be married to someone who didn't find you sexually attractive?

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