I contemplated just emailing one of your kids on Facebook and sending my response to you via email but I figured since you chose to publicly post a comment by signing it with your ecclesiastical position of power, as if giving you an authoritative right or responsibility to chastise my lack of faith and present apostasy, while yet failing to realize that my entire post exposed my doubt and distrust of the Prophetic mantle, much less, the revelatory powers found in the calling of a local Bishop and...You were never my bishop.
Maybe in all of my apostasy I missed the revelation organizing the formation of wards in the blogosphere requiring online Bishops and hence, giving you a stewardship to reply as "Bishop." I'm sure that if you were replying as a friend or brother in the gospel, you simply would have signed as "Brother" or "Dave."
Setting aside that for a moment. I do thank you for the time you took to investigate and send me an article to read. I read it and it was interesting. While I thought it was predictable to be personally accused of using incorrect assumptions and flawed logic, I found it most humorous to then read an article by a former BYU philosophy professor richly laden with numerous incorrect assumptions and pathetically flawed logic. Imagine the irony...
And FYI, you know what his answer was after all his little clever and witty analogies that worked about as well as a Creationist teaching evolution? Repent and read the scriptures. That is the key to overcoming intellectual doubt and lack of spiritual faith? REALLY? Because, of course, anyone who is having any type of doubt MUST be sinning...that's the only logical reason for a person to have doubt in this perfect organization we belong to.
Newsflash. Here's a gospel truth: We're ALL sinners.
Many, like yourself I assume, apparently see no inconsistencies, errors, mistakes, or lies in any part of Mormon history or present. I applaud you for your dedication. Some (like myself for many years) choose to ignore the many and varied inconsistencies found all throughout our history and doctrine. I just figured that I had prayed, had the warm-fuzzies, and that all of my questions would be answered eventually. Eventually never came and it wasn't for a lack of inquiry. Is a decade not long enough to wait? Lord, forgive my impatience...
You and I will never reach a conclusion on this. I could give you quote after quote from Prophets who made ludicrous, racist, sexist, and preposterous statements. You'd bat them away like a mosquito. You already have the conclusion so you make the history fit to get you there. You refuse to admit that any Prophet has ever been wrong. They are as infallible as the Pope. We must obediently follow and sustain every word.
I'll even put words in your mouth here, only because your rebuttal is horribly predictable..."Even if they are wrong, it is our responsibility to follow them and the consequences will be upon the shoulders of our leaders if they have led us astray." And though you sarcastically mocked my opinion of faith and logic in your response, it is this very mentality that makes faith illogical. It is why Holy Crusades brought death or conversion and why religious zealots fly planes into buildings...
Let me ask you this.
If Gordon B. Hinckley had come to you, when your daughters were 14-16 years of age and explained that 'Celestial Marriage' was to be re-instituted and told your daughter that if she would marry him that "
Are you okay with that? Are you thinking about faith or logic at this point?
Or what if Thomas S. Monson called you to leave your family and go serve a mission and while you were gone, he came to your home, taught the doctrine of plural marriage and told your wife that "
Would that build your faith? Or would you "let apostasy grow in your heart just because you lacked faith"?
I only include these two items of history because they are tend to spark emotion. I believe faith is more closely tied with emotion than logic. Logic can remove emotion and still function. Faith cannot remove emotion and function efficiently.
With regards to my doubts, we could talk about everything from blacks and the Priesthood to DNA evidences of the Book of Mormon (or the lack thereof) to LDS positions on evolution and the list goes on and on. The point is this: I do not believe I will ever resolve ALL of my doubts regarding the inconsistencies found within the religion.
How then do I retain my membership and testimony if my religion cannot expand on fundamental matters of our faith, like, how the creation occurred but it then presumes to tell me how God wants me to vote in matters of local civil legislation?
I believe in God. I have faith in Jesus Christ. My greatest hope is that there actually is bridge to connect the islands of faith and reason. While the two appear as incompatible forces, seemingly working in opposition, I remain eagerly waiting how I can reconcile.
I reiterate my initial query (that was only answered by calls to repentance & scripture reading) - Is there a value in having a "current LIVING PROPHET & MOUTH PIECE OF GOD" if I:
A) Cannot trust what they are saying, or
B) Cannot determine when they speak in official capacity?
Yet here we come to our vicious circle again because you believe everything that comes out of his mouth is the mind and will of the Lord...and I don't. Of course, I have logic and evidence on my side. You have faith.
We stand at an impasse...but not really.