"a ray of sunshine, spiritually speaking."
Some of that spirituality is creditable to the Church. Never forget that.
Out of the past 18 months, I have spent 7 in four different hospitals, and each time I was bailed out of the problem by using techniques I learned in the Church.
I have faced death twice now, and won.
"Some of that spirituality is creditable to the Church. Never forget that.
Out of the past 18 months, I have spent 7 in four different hospitals, and each time I was bailed out of the problem by using techniques I learned in the Church."
Hmmm.........I wonder if you were attracted to the Church because of your emotional and spiritual energy and innocence or is it the reverse - the Church made you that way. If you were born and bred in the Church, I would say the Church made you that way. Since you chose to convert, you were probably born that way and joining the Church made you even more spiritually energetic. Or you joined that particular church because its innocence and spiritual energy was something you were born with.
I can't comprehend how Americans choose and change their religions. To me religion is something you are born and bred into, it is a cultural thing, not something you pick like a college course out of a catalogue. It is a burden you have to endure because you were born into it, not something you choose.
Practically nothing is THAT simple.
As a child I looked outo into the heavens and knew there was a God. There's too much order out there for it to be accidental.
I looked at several churches and came to the conclusion what what they were teaching was simply unbelievable.
I went for many years knowing that God was there, but I was on my own as to how to approach him, or whether I even should. I promised myself that I wouldn't join any church until I found one I could believe.
I won't put the details onto this forum for obvious reasons. Let's just say that a certain chain of events led me to the Church. I was a tough nut to crack. I gave the missionaries a really hard time. But it finally dawned on me that they were telling the truth.
I joined, still feeling uncertain, but at least feeling that I was closer than I had ever been before. That feeling grew and grew, and after some experiences which are extremely personal, I got more than enough proof of its truth.
But, as the Bible says, signs are not given for the convincing of the unbeliever; signs follow them that believe. It wasn't until I got into it more deeply that I got the testimony I now have.
As I said earlier, I've now stared death in the face twice and won. Ever since I learned what death is all about, I've never feared it. In fact, I'm a bit curious to see what comes next.
I'm far from a perfect example of what an LDS ought to be, but I have had to learn to live with my limitations and use the talents I have as best I can. No more can be asked of anyone.
My faith has been severely tested, and many times I thought I had lost it, but it keeps coming back, and I'm very glad of that.
So it isn't a case of simply finding a church which coincided with my purported "innocence". It was a case of lengthy investigation and years of trial, but I got through it all somehow and now I stand as a witness to anyone who asks that the Church is in fact true.
From there on, it's take it or leave it.
As a wise woman once told a group of missionaries, "All you can do is tell them what you know and what you believe. The Gospel isn't up for argument".
Bill, I must comment on your post to Nellie, you wrote thus, ................
What I do know is that experiments have been done in hospitals with the bed of dying patients on very delicate scales. When the patient dies, there is a slight decrease in the weight. Something departs the body which is measurable.
Surely speaking in a scientific term this decrease in weight would be due to loss of urine and faeces when the bodies sphincter muscles no longer work, this happens to all cadavers I think.
Just my two stotinki
You are a very nice, sincere, straight edge, serious, moral and spiritual individual - at least that's how you sound. I am going to try hard not to be snotty or insulting, but.....
"I looked at several churches and came to the conclusion what they were teaching was simply unbelievable."
And in your opinion the BOM and J.Smith is believable? Are you serious?
"I went for many years knowing that God was there, but I was on my own as to how to approach him, or whether I even should. I promised myself that I wouldn't join any church until I found one I could believe."
I thought you were born a Methodist? Your family did not go to church? I always knew that there is no God. God is a man-made concept. The force that drives the universe is God to me, and it has nothing to do with any gospels or religions.
"I won't put the details onto this forum for obvious reasons. Let's just say that a certain chain of events led me to the Church. I was a tough nut to crack. I gave the missionaries a really hard time. But it finally dawned on me that they were telling the truth."
I know you are a tough nut, so you must have really wanted to be cracked. They cracked you alright! No one could ever crack me, because you don't want to know what lewd thoughts would be running through my mind about two cute, blond missionaries. I am sure their truth is true to them, but it is not true to me. Truth when it concerns faith, God and religion is not factual, so it is not absolute truth.
"I joined, still feeling uncertain, but at least feeling that I was closer than I had ever been before. That feeling grew and grew, and after some experiences which are extremely personal, I got more than enough proof of its truth."
I envy you your spiritual energy and naivete. I am simply too jaded, cynical, and know too much science.
"Ever since I learned what death is all about, I've never feared it. In fact, I'm a bit curious to see what comes next."
I know what comes next - oblivion. I fear the physical torment of not being able to breathe, of struggling for breath and dying while fully conscious. Once I pass out and become unconscious, no worries. I like the idea dying in my sleep best.
"And in your opinion the BOM and J.Smith is believable? Are you serious?"
All I'll say to that is no, I don't "believe" it. I KNOW it. And I'm deadly serious.
I know it's difficult to believe after the way our modern society has "developed", but that's exactly why Christ restored the Church in its original form.
Your mind needs rearranging, so I'll answer another couple of your points.
1) I know you are a tough nut, so you must have really wanted to be cracked"
No. I went full of doubts, and even asked the missionaries once, "How much do you expect me to believe?". Does that sound like I went in like a lamb? If I had "wanted to be cracked", any other church could have done it. What happened was that I found what I was looking for after many failed attempts.
2) About lewd dreams about two cute blond missionaries, there are also lady missionaries who most often teach single females, to prevent just that.
From my viewpoint, what you're lacking is any real experience with spirits, holy or otherwise. I have gained very much in this area, and that's all the "proof" I need.
Take it from me. I've been within millimeters of death twice now, and have faced some terrible experiences. Only with knowledge I've gained in the Church have I survived. I can't stress that enough.
So, as the wise lady said, the gospel isn't up for argument. Take it or leave it.
That's your choice.
"That's your choice"
I don't think religion or faith is a matter of choice, you are feeling it or you are not. If you are not feeling it and if you want to be feeling it, there are things you can do to get there - read gospels, talk to missionaries, attend religious services - and hope that all this spiritual work will help you to feel it. Some people really need it and feeling it is necessary for them, like the air they breathe. I am not one of those people. Like I said, we know too much science in this day and age. But if a new religion sprouts tomorrow that incorporates all the scientific truths we know, I will give it a chance. It has to be something that calls the driving force of the universe God. That is the only thing IMHO deserving of worship. The engine that drives the universe. All that energy and chemistry and physics. Wait, isn't this Scientology? Hmmmm........I have to research it.
I'm not going to try to convince you otherwise.
But I've had it with this "What's true for you may not be true for someone else" argument. If it's true, it's true. Period. End of discussion.
What you're calling "the driving force of the universe" is a living being known as God. People talk all the time about "the laws of nature" foretting entirely that wherever a law exists a law-giver must also exist. In short, who wrote the rules?
If you're waiting for God to be proved scientifically, you're wasting a lot of time.
You don't believe it; you don't want to believe it. As I said, it's your choice.
What you're looking for seems to be a church or belief structure that agrees with your opinion. Fine, if that's what you're looking for. I had to rearrange my whole life, practically, when I discovered what the Church is all about. If you don't want that experience, that, too, is your choice.
"What you're calling "the driving force of the universe" is a living being known as God."
It is not a living being the way I think of a living being. A living being to me is something earth-bound, created on this earth from life on earth. That's not what drives the universe. it is energy and matter, but where it comes from and where it is going is incomprehensible to me, so I will just have faith in it, worship it even. It is really humbling to experience it, especially in the form of climate, like a hurricane, or 50 foot waves on the ocean, or a tzunami or a volcano. Now that is something I can believe in and even worship.
As for belief in Jesus, a puny humanoid creature, a mere earthling, I don't think so. People 2000 or even 1000 years ago before they knew as much as we know now I can excuse for believing this nonsense. This fairy tale has come a long way. It is no longer believable this day and age. I am an Orthodox Christian and I go to church on holidays, maybe half a dozen times a year, that's about it. To me it is more about tradition and culture rather than believing the fairytale about Jesus.
They (the missionaries) cracked you because you were ready and willing to be cracked. I know how stubborn you are, and if you did not open yourself up to them, made yourself vulnerable, they would not have cracked you. How come no one can talk you into marriage? How come no woman can crack you? Because you are as stubborn as a donkey. Those missionaries were able to crack you because you chose to allow it.
If I was to "choose" a religion other than the one I was born into, this is the one I would choose:
The word Scientology literally means "the study of truth." It comes from the Latin word "scio" meaning "knowing in the fullest sense of the word" and the Greek word "logos" meaning "study of."
Scientology is the study and handling of the spirit in relationship to itself, others and all of life. The Scientology religion comprises a body of knowledge extending from certain fundamental truths. Prime among these:
Man is an immortal, spiritual being. His experience extends well beyond a single lifetime. His capabilities are unlimited, even if not presently realized вЂ” and those capabilities can be realized. He is able to not only solve his own problems, accomplish his goals and gain lasting happiness, but also achieve new, higher states of awareness and ability.
In Scientology no one is asked to accept anything as belief or on faith. That which is true for you is what you have observed to be true. An individual discovers for himself that Scientology works by personally applying its principles and observing or experiencing results.
Through Scientology, people all over the world are achieving the long-sought goal of true spiritual release and freedom.
Scientology also reflects the influence of the Hindu concept of karma and dharma as well as the psychological theories of Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung and William Sargant. Hubbard called the Vedas ScientologyвЂ™s earliest ancestor: "And we find ScientologyвЂ™s earliest, certainly known ancestor in the Veda." Hubbard also gave recognition to the Tao Te Ching, the Dharma and Gautama Buddha as forerunners to Scientology.
"Hubbard also gave recognition to the Tao Te Ching, the Dharma and Gautama Buddha as forerunners to Scientology."
See? You're looking for something that fits your preconceived notion; you're not looking for God.
I have another friend who's in the same position you are. She didn't want to do it God's way, and God's not going to do it her way. It's an impasse I can't influence, and I'm not going to try.
L. Ron Hubbard is one of the biggtest phones to come down the pike. Scientology isn't his first "creation". I'm not sure what he was pushing earlier, but I do know he was famous before Scientology was heard of.
If you're so dead set on science, why not look at Christian Science? Their mother church is in Boston. "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" is their main book of doctrine. It's interesting reading. I attended services at the mother church with a CS family I knew in Boston. Interesting, but I didn't get much out of it.
Here's another point:
"In Scientology no one is asked to accept anything as belief or on faith."
No, they're just asked for money.
LDS doctrine doesn't ask anyone to accept anything "on faith either". That's one of the main reasons I started looking more closely. I had a whole batch of questions, and for the first time I started getting reasonable answers.
For example: If Adam and Eve were the first two people on earth, and they had two sons, whom did Cain marry? He went off into the land of Nod and founded a dynasty. Did he take Eve with him? Is "MF" a term of biblican origin?
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