The Mormon Who Would Be Atheist
Posted by Zenaida
Or is it the other way around? I’ve come to an important realization that I am Mormon. This may sound completely obvious, but it really is an important moment in my life. I have been wandering around trying to navigate the path I was told was straight and narrow, and came to be crooked and winding. Granted, the change could have been my own new direction, but in my effort to return, I found myself hesitating because the path no longer looked real.
There are many things I could site as reasons for doubting the church and even the existence of God, but right at this moment in time, it doesn’t matter to me. (Ask me again tomorrow.) I still feel like a closet atheist in church (or is it closet mormon?). I still find it difficult sometimes to show up in church when I feel marginalized, but I will continue to do it. I still find it difficult to pay tithing to an institution that I don’t know if I wholly want to support, but I will continue to do it. I still don’t have answers, but I am unwilling to let go of this tradition that is such an integral part of my life, and despite its flaws, manages to do a lot of good in the world. The meaning of Israel is “he that striveth with God.” I don’t intend to give up the struggle anytime soon. If I have desire to believe, then that’s enough right now.
I feel great joy in my discovery, which made me want to share it. I also realized that my personal victory will not be seen as such by all. It’s not enough for some and too much for others. Some people are wont to see only limitations in my new perspective. My own former self would not have seen it as a victory. But, I am learning to accept myself and others. I feel much more open to ideas, and try not to dismiss things outright that challenge my world view. I am finding peace in accepting my state of questioning.
Do you ever feel the pull of dual identities, and how do you balance them? How has being open brought growth or change?