23 September 2009

Mad Libs

Excerpt from Under the Banner of Shamayim Heaven about Skeptic Mormons.

Just replace Deloy with Moshe, Colorado City with Boro Park, etc. and see yourself in the mirror.

From a tranquil city park at the edge of Colorado City, the sheer cliffs of Canaan Mountains erupt heavenward without preamble... "My brother David and I used to sneak up here every chance we got when we were kids", says Deloy Bateman....
Deloy is perched at the edge of this mountaintop, staring down at the town where he was born and raised. It's the end of July and the temperature is 104 in the shade. Deloy- who seems oblivious to the withering heat even though he is wearing long polyester pants, a long sleeved shirt, and the religion's trademark long underwear-is an apostate from the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christs of Latter Day Saints and has no respect for it's new prophet, Warren Jeffs, but he still resides in this xenophobic community, stuck in the middle of town, and doubts that he'll ever live very far away..... Unlike most who have rejected the teachings of the FLDS church... Deloy has become an atheist.

It hasn't been an easy transformation. "my whole life, I've had this need to believe in something", he says. "I've wanted answers to why we were put here, just like everybody else. The religion provided these answers.... This religion is in my blood.

"even though I don't believe anymore, I'm still wearing the garment-the long sacred underwear. I try not to wear it, but I just can't seem to leave it off, even on hot summer days like this....

In any case, it wasn't the culture's sexual customs or its lifestyle constraints that finally induced Deloy to apostatize. Rather, he says, "It just got to be where I could no longer ignore that the religion is a lie...

Although Deloy says that he was "extremely religious" throughout his youth, he also had a probing curious mind. "Even as a young boy", he says, "I remember wondering about contradictions between what the religion taught and scientific truth. But Uncle Roy told us that the way to handle that was to avoid asking certain kinds of questions. So I trained myself to ignore the contradictions. I got good at not letting myself think about them."

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