Tuesday, March 26, 2013

On Marriage and Family

I love my marriage. Having my husband nearby at any moment is fantastic, and my life has been enriched by his presence in it. I adore him, and I don't know what I would do if I couldn't be with him.

Doctrines taught in the Mormon Church teach that marriage is the beginning to the epitome of human existence. This is how families start their journey together through the eternities. Those doctrines won't change. Men and women together are meant to start families.

But that is only one definition of family, and it's a definition the LDS Church can and will stick to. I don't mind that; it's what the church has taught for generations and it's a part of life.

I have been blessed with so many families. They are not all recognized by the Church, and I don't expect to be sealed in the temple to all of my "extended family" for eternity. There are simply too many of them, and they have other families too.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Downcast Emo Kids, Computer Algorithms, and the United States Constitution

I've been on Facebook for a few years now, and if you have too, then you know that that means I've seen my fair share of pictures with words on them.  Some try to be funny; some are utterly saccharine; most attempt to boil down some complicated social issue into, at most, a single sentence.  I don't think I'm alone in saying that I never thought I'd learn something from one of these pictures; today, though, I discovered I was wrong to think that way.

Yes, thanks to whatever algorithms Facebook uses to arrange the posts on my newsfeed, this image...

...was immediately followed by this image:

Ladies and gentlemen, today I learned that the US Government is a shaggy-haired emo kid, and that the asinine break-up poem scrawled in the back of his school planner is actually the Constitution.  Makes you think.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Witchcraft, Rock 'N' Roll, and Mission Lore

The Rock 'N' Roll Fireside was possibly the most enduring urban legend on my mission. Elders spoke of it in hushed tones. Some claimed to have heard it, or to having a previous companion who'd heard it, or to know a missionary who had a companion that had it on CD. Everyone seemed profoundly affected by it, although nobody I spoke with ever seemed to own a copy. Most missionaries agreed that it was simply insane, though a few took it very seriously. Demons. Witchcraft. Devil worship. Sorcery. Dungeons & Dragons. Ouija boards. And rock 'n' roll. For the longest time I doubted that it even existed. Sure, I was certain that somewhere out there was a recording of a speaker denouncing popular music. Two minutes on Google helped me find this from then-apostle Ezra Taft Benson, so clearly fear of rock 'n' roll is an established, if somewhat outdated, component of certain strains of Mormon thought. Surely, though, the rest of the lore surrounding the alleged fireside was just gossip and exaggeration, two things missionaries are very good at.