Religious B.S.

Religious Blessing Seeking exposes how church leaders control their members, and lead them astray from following Christ, through promising them blessings in exchange for obedience.

Preface

In 2007, my membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints was ended, as church leaders met together and decided that I should be excommunicated for apostasy. My sin, which was deemed severe enough to cancel my baptism, was that I wouldn’t agree to blindly accept a particular church position.

Rather than help me to understand this position, church leaders ignored my questions about it, were offended that I would even dare to question it, and felt that my lack of trust in church authority warranted maximum church disciplinary measures.

So, at this point in my spiritual journey, I found myself completely on my own. But, unlike many former LDS members, who turned to atheism after their excommunications, my journey of truth seeking and discovery remained God centered and it intensified, to the point that I’m now, in my opinion, closer to God than ever before.

In essence, over time, as I’ve thought about many LDS doctrines, I’ve discovered how they’ve held me back from connecting with the divine. In other words, as I’ve sought to know truth, I’ve been “de-programmed” from the destructive brainwashing of the LDS church.

Also, I believe these discoveries of truth have application in any organized religious setting.

About eight years ago, I began publishing my truth discoveries in the form of messages, sent three times each year, to members of the local LDS congregation I belonged to before being expelled. This short book is my 24th message published to this group.

Contents

Chapter One: Can We Cast Satan Out of Our Lives?

Chapter Two: Is Blessing Seeking Selfish, Fair, or Selfless?

Chapter Three: Is Blessing Seeking the Way to Heavenly Bliss?

Chapter Four: Is Heavenly Bliss Available Now, or Later?

Chapter Five: Where Does Hatred Come From?

Chapter Six: Is it Possible to Feel Nothing But Love?

Chapter Seven: How Difficult is it, to Turn from Selfishness to Selflessness?

Chapter Eight: Am I Happy, or am I Thinking, I Can’t be Happy, Until…?

Chapter One: Can We Cast Satan Out of Our Lives?

November 17, 2020

Dear Copper Hills 8th Ward Members,

Did you know, that any time we feel darkness in our lives, it’s only because we’ve believed some sort of lie? And, did you know, that as soon as we recognize what that lie is, the darkness will go away?

Greetings! This is my 24th postcard. I’ve sent my postcards, three times each year. Because my mailing list is outdated, you might be receiving this, and yet, not be a member of the LDS church. If this is the case, please pardon me, or feel free to read what I have to say.

Or, this message is available on www.amazon.com, in the Kindle e-book format, titled “Religious B.S., Religious Blessing Seeking exposes how church leaders control their members, and how they actually lead them astray from following Christ, through promising them blessings in exchange for obedience.”

In the LDS church, it’s taught that one of the duties of apostles, is to cast Satan out of the world’s midst. In the Book of Mormon, it’s taught that the time would come, where “because of the righteousness of the people, Satan would have no power.”

So, which is it, are apostles going to cast Satan out of the world’s midst, or will the righteousness of the people cast out Satan, or will it be a combination of both, where the apostles cause the world to be righteous enough to cast Satan out of their midst?

If the apostles would encourage everyone to “receive the Holy Ghost,” if everyone was led by God’s Spirit of love, having a mindset to “give,” rather than to “get,” then Satan would be cast out of our midst, so why, then, are the apostles advocating the idea of obedience in order to “get” blessed?

After-all, aren’t we told at baptism, “we say unto you, receive the Holy Ghost?”

Yet, judging from how the church actually operates, wouldn’t it be more honest if it was said, “we say unto you, obey church leaders, that ye may be blessed,” as this is what’s actually expected of church members after baptism, isn’t it?

At the end of my missionary service, after serving my last six months as a traveling trainer throughout the mission, my mission president laid his hands on my head, and gave me a blessing, where he felt inspired to tell me, “the Lord has told Lucifer to remove his hands from off of you.”

And, I believe Lucifer’s hands were off of me, because I was seeking to be led by the Holy Ghost in all things, thinking only of blessing others, rather than following the church’s directives, of seeking for blessings, through obedience to church directives.

Anyway, since then, I’ve had over 30 years to think about how to help others, also conquer Satan.

And, my zeal toward that end, even caused the church to want to excommunicate me.

Well, finally, recently, as I was attempting to help my wife get rid of some darkness that she couldn’t shake, the most profound and simple answer came to me, which has helped her to rid herself of darkness ever since.

Also, came the understanding, that this is the only way to completely defeat Satan.

So, here’s what came to my mind.

Any time we feel darkness, it’s only because we’ve believed some sort of lie.

And, as soon as we recognize what that lie is, the darkness will go away.

That’s it.

In other words, so long as we believe only truth, Satan won’t have power over us.

Satan is the father of lies. So, he’s defeated, by believing only truth.

So often, we blame others for the darkness we feel. We say to ourselves, so and so made us mad, or so and so is causing us misery, but this is never true. The truth is, we feel dark, only and always because we’ve believed something that’s false, which allows darkness to be with us.

If we’ll keep watch, noticing any darkness that we feel, and search our souls for the lie we’ve believed, to allow that darkness in, as soon as we recognize the lie, and see it as a lie, the darkness will leave us.

And, again, if while in a state of feeling darkness, we also feel hatred or anger, where we blame our bad feeling on something or someone else, we can be assured that this is another lie, that if embraced, will only enable that darkness to continue to stay with us longer.

Basically, darkness wants to stay with us, and it can only stay with us, as long as we believe some sort of lie, so while in darkness, additional lies are expressed to us by darkness, in the form of anger or hatred toward others, where we blame them for our miserable feeling.

But, can someone else actually cause us to feel misery? Can others control how we feel? Or, do we control how we feel, where we can choose to not believe that someone else’s actions caused our misery?

Whenever we feel yucky because darkness is near us, the darkness will always want us to believe that it’s someone else’s fault that we feel yucky, but the truth always is, that we feel yucky, only because darkness is near us, and it’s only because we’ve believed something that isn’t true.

Now, let’s consider a few church teachings, that in my opinion, are actually lies.

The church’s way of thinking, that our happiness depends on future blessings and rewards, is a lie, in my opinion, which keeps darkness with us, because it causes us to believe that we can’t experience the happiness, right here and now, of the presence of God, which is the greatest form of happiness.

The truth is, that when all darkness is detected, when it all goes away because it’s recognized, when our hearts feel nothing but love for others, because the presence of God is with us, there’s nothing happier that we can feel in the future, because there’s nothing happier than experiencing the presence of God, where we experience the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost.

In other words, as we root out all lies from our hearts, we will then conquer Satan, who is the father of lies, and experience heavenly bliss, even the presence of God, which is the greatest of all feelings of happiness.

And, you don’t need to take my word for it.

You can test this out for yourselves.

Also, it’s important to understand, that the church’s explanation, that “the gift of the Holy Ghost, is the right to the companionship of that member of the Godhead whenever one is worthy,” is an oxymoron.

Essentially, those who believe they’ve earned or deserve the Spirit, who think they’re worthy of it, won’t ever enjoy it, because they’re trying to enjoy the Spirit of loving and “giving”, through seeking to “get” it.

Basically, in order to enjoy the companionship of the Holy Ghost, one must simply believe that the Holy Ghost is a gift, and not something that can ever be earned or deserved, for after-all, it’s known as the “gift” of the Holy Ghost, isn’t it?

And, interestingly enough, the Holy Ghost isn’t actually something that we “get,” but it’s something that empowers us to lose our desire to “get,” causing us to only want to “give.” So, it’s the gift that keeps on giving, so to speak.

Chapter Two: Is Blessing Seeking Selfish, Fair, or Selfless?


After my excommunication from the church, in a meeting with former Stake President Davies, I told him that I was so very happy, and perplexed, he looked at me and asked, “how can you be happy, since we’ve taken all church blessings away from you?”

Basically, it appears that President Davies perceived happiness to be based on blessings we “get,” and so, he didn’t understand the nature of my happiness, which was based on what I “gave,” as I was inspired of the Holy Ghost.

So, maybe you might want to think twice about what Joseph Smith taught, that “all blessings come from obedience to laws of God they’re predicated upon.” For, this statement leads us to have mindsets that seek to get blessings, yet Christ, the one we’re to follow, had the opposite mindset of only seeking to bless others.

I’ve noticed, that there are three degrees of happiness that people seek for. They either seek happiness in selfishly wanting to “get” blessed, or they seek happiness in wanting to be fair, wanting to be blessed as much as they want to bless others, or they seek happiness in selflessly wanting to “give,” where they only seek to bless others.

Also, for those who want more happiness than selfishness can provide, God has given us conscience, to empower us to be fairness minded, and for those who want more happiness than fairness can provide, God has given us the Holy Ghost, to empower us to be selfless minded, to be like Christ, only wanting that others would be blessed, even wanting our enemies to be blessed.

So, with this in mind, let’s analyze the LDS church’s program and where it’s leading people.

Have you ever thought deeply about the fact that the entire church program is wrapped up in the concept, “those who obey the commandments will get great blessings?”

Is this selfish, fair, or selfless?

Well, obedience isn’t selfless, because we’re not just giving obedience, without an expectation of reward, and it isn’t fair, because we expect blessings, greater than the energy expended through obeying.

Consider tithing, for instance, it’s always expected that the reward for paying tithing will be greater than the tithing donated, including the greatest expected LDS reward, explained in the D&C, that of being promised that the tithe payer won’t be burned at the Lord’s coming.

So, in the case of paying tithing, seeking to obey, in order to get greatly blessed, is actually selfish.

In fact, I would say, that in all cases of obedience, to a set of dictated commands or directives, because there’s always an expectation of greater blessings than the energy extended through obedience, it’s always based on a selfish motivation.

Also, if it’s true that there are three heavens or degrees of glory after this life, as the LDS church teaches, it stands to reason that those who are selfishly minded will inherit the lowest, or Telestial, with people who are minded toward fairness, inheriting the middle, or Terrestrial, and selfless people, like Christ, inheriting the Celestial.

So, why is the entire church program wrapped up in the concept, “those who obey commandments get great blessings?” Isn’t this actually leading members to have a selfish mindset, resulting in an eventual inheritance in the lowest kingdom of glory?

In the church’s sacrament prayers, you’re promised that if you “keep the commandments,” you’ll “get” the great blessing of “always have the Spirit to be with you.”

In the church’s third article of faith, you’re promised that if you obey, you’ll “get” the great blessing of salvation. It reads, “we believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.”

In the Book of Mormon, over and over again, it’s written that you’ll “get” blessed, just like the Nephites and Lamanites, who were blessed and “prospered in the land,” when obedient to the commandments.

Also, church worthiness interviews always focus on obedience, with blessings attached.

“Worthiness,” in the church, is always based on obedience to church given commandments, where it’s determined whether or not a member is qualified for the blessings of church membership, taking the sacrament, holding callings, holding priesthoods, and whether they’re “good enough” to attend the temple.

In essence, over and over again, members of the LDS church are led, and trained, to believe that seeking to “get” blessed, through obedience to commandments, will result in their salvation and exaltation in the hereafter.

But, is this actually true?

Will the worthy, will the obedient, obtain salvation and exaltation?

And, does the Holy Ghost verify this way of thinking, as truth?

Chapter Three: Is Blessing Seeking the Way to Heavenly Bliss?


Jesus, the one who showed us the way to salvation, wasn’t ever found guilty of disobeying any law, but it wasn’t because he obeyed the law. Rather, He was led in all things by the Holy Ghost, and thus, He never walked outside the confines of the law.

And, to further illustrate this point, that those who walk in the Spirit, aren’t ever guilty of breaking the law of God, Paul taught, “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”

Also, the scriptures teach, in multiple places, that love fulfills the law.

And, it’s written, that those who are led by the Spirit of God, are the sons/daughters of God.

Jesus never sought to be blessed, through obedience, but rather, because He was always inspired of the Holy Ghost, because His motivation was always based on giving to and loving others, He only sought to bless others, never thinking to Himself, “what’s in it for me?”

So, if you think you’re following Christ, by being judged worthy, by your obedience, where you hope for future blessings of mansions and glory in heaven, you’re sorely mistaken, for this is not what Jesus taught or did.

Rather, Jesus exemplified and explained, “my disciples will be known by their love,” or in other words, they’ll be known by how they’ve sought to bless others, and not by how they’ve sought to be blessed.

Yet, in church worthiness interviews, members aren’t asked about their progress in becoming selfless like Christ, members aren’t asked about their love for others, nor about their desire to bless others.

In the church’s sacrament prayers, love isn’t mentioned.

And, in the church’s temples, love isn’t mentioned.

Instead, in these events and places, members are taught to seek to be blessed, rather than to love.

How is it, that the entire church, even millions of members, have been brainwashed, conditioned, and programmed regularly to believe that seeking blessings is the way to the highest heaven, rather than being taught to follow Christ, to only love, to only seek to bless others, to not think “what’s in it for me?”

Why is it, that church leaders are determined to keep members on the path of seeking to be blessed through obedience to their dictates? Why is it, that church leaders have continued to ignore my requests to have one simple question on this subject, answered?

Could it be, that these leaders are actually anti-love? Actually anti-Christ? For, the question I’ve asked, has everything to do with being led in all things by the Spirit, which enables us to love as Christ loves, where we don’t seek to “get” blessed, but to bless others.

I’ve now asked the church, 187 times, by a letter sent every 10 days, to please verify whether or not the church considers 2 Nephi 32:5 to be true, or not. This passage states, “… if ye will enter in by the way, and receive the Holy Ghost, it will show unto you all things what ye should do.”

How many of you are led by the Holy Ghost in all things? Or, do you find yourselves thinking that maybe you’re not “worthy” of the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost? Isn’t this because the church’s sacrament prayers state that you must keep all commandments in order to qualify for the blessing of having the Spirit to be with you?

Well, contrary to what the church teaches, that one must first obey the commandments, and be worthy, in order to enjoy the companionship of the Holy Ghost, the truth is, that no worthiness is required, in order for a person to be led by the Holy Ghost, to love and bless others.

In fact, because those who seek to be “worthy,” are in a mindset of thinking about a reward for their obedience, they’re actually prevented from being led by the Holy Ghost in their selfish mindedness.

In other words, the only thing required, in order to enjoy the companionship of the Holy Ghost, to be led by the Spirit, is to exercise faith in the principle of love, in the principle of blessing others, rather than selfishly thinking, “what’s in it for me?”

Anyone can love. Anyone can give. There’s no worthiness required. Worthiness is only and always associated with thinking we deserve to “get” blessings. It’s a selfish concept. It’s a concept that opposes love.

So, how long will it take, for this concept to sink in and take root, that love fulfills the law, that salvation is through exercising faith in the principle of love, that being led by the Holy Ghost doesn’t require worthiness?

How difficult will it be, for you to unravel the constant brainwashing, conditioning, and programming of the church, where you’ve been controlled by church leaders, because of your desire to obtain the blessings they’ve promised, through obedience to their dictates?

It’s my testimony, that being led by the Holy Ghost, enjoying the Spirit as a constant companion, where it always leads me to bless others, is far more heavenly, peaceful, and joyous, than the hope of any blessings the church has to offer, through obedience.

Do you believe Christ, that love fulfils the law, or do you believe church leaders, that obedience to law, and a desire to “get” blessings, is the way to heavenly bliss?

Chapter Four: Is Heavenly Bliss Available Now, or Later?


It’s my testimony, that heavenly bliss is available now, that you can live in the presence of God, not in the future, after “all you can do,” but you can live there now, through being led by the Holy Ghost in everything you do.

1 John 4:12 states, “If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.”

Did you catch that? This passage states, that if we love, which anyone can do without being “worthy,” then God will dwell in us. It didn’t say, if we obey commandments, then God will dwell in us, like the church teaches in their sacrament prayers.

And, we can test it out, we can love others, and see if God dwells in us.

Also, according to the New Testament, when God dwells in us, we’re in the kingdom of God.

Luke 17:20-21 states, “And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.”

In other words, contrary to what’s taught in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, that it’s the kingdom of God, which was established with observation, the truth is, the kingdom of God is actually within the loving hearts of believers.

Now, I know there’s a happiness associated with membership in the church, in thinking that the church is the kingdom of God. I experienced this happiness until my excommunication, which was carried out because I didn’t want to seek blessings for myself, because rather, I wanted to only be led by the Holy Ghost, to love and bless others.

And, believe it or not, where the church would say that it’s impossible for an excommunicated member to be happy, it’s actually much happier, when all thoughts of wanting to be blessed are removed from you, as the Holy Ghost shows you a different way, where your heart is filled with nothing but love for others, even for your enemies.

Basically, when we embrace the kingdom of God as something that’s “within us,” it’s far happier than selfishly thinking the kingdom of God is an organization that promises great blessings in exchange for our obedience.

Chapter Five: Where Does Hatred Come From?


In this world, especially at the present time, we’re definitely experiencing a situation where there’s so much hatred. There’s always something being talked about that people are encouraged to hate. But, are we supposed to hate? Is it good to hate?

Hatred is always associated with wanting to “get” something. Hatred is only felt by those who selfishly want to “get” blessings, who are angry that they didn’t “get” what they wanted, or fearful that they won’t “get” what they want.

Those who seek to “give,” who seek to love and bless others, don’t feel any hatred.

Also, all hatred stems from law/rules based thinking, because all people who hate, are actually judging others by some sort of law/rules they want them to abide by, and are angry when not obeyed. Thus, law based thinking and hatred go hand in hand.

And, this is why Jesus taught, “don’t judge,” because if we didn’t ever judge, we wouldn’t ever hate.

Basically, if we want to be led by the Holy Ghost in all things, as stated in 2 Nephi 32:5, where it shows us all things we should do, the only thing we must do, to qualify for this guidance, is refrain from judging, or in other words, refrain from hating.

And, really, people who love law, who love to impose law/rules on others, aren’t so interested in giving good treatment to others, but are more interested in “getting” good treatment from others, through imposing law/rules on others, which is selfish.

Basically, law and love don’t mix. With a law based mindset, we always think in terms of judging people, with a selfish motive. With love, there’s none of that mindset, as it’s only interested in blessing others, even enemies.

Jesus taught, “love your enemies,” which is only possible through rejecting a law based mindset.

Also, it’s explained in scripture, that through Christ the law was done away with. All sin, under the law, was paid for and atoned for by Him. Jesus gave us a new commandment/covenant to abide by, a path that few would find, to love others as He loves, and He said that His disciples would be known, not by how obedient and deserving of blessings they were, but by how much they loved and blessed others.

Jesus taught, “in all things, whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them, for this is the law and the prophets.” With this one simple instruction, the entire law and prophets was replaced with a directive to love.

And, when Paul taught, the letter(law) killeth, but the Spirit(love) giveth life, he was referring to the fact that obedience to law, with its hatred, judging, and selfish seeking for reward, kills people spiritually, where a heart filled with love leads to being spiritually alive.

So, I’m not sure why Joseph Smith taught, that the Lord’s house is a house of order, where all blessings come from obedience to a dictated law. I don’t believe the Holy Ghost will verify the truth of these teachings.

This way of thinking is a direct contradiction to what Jesus taught, who clearly explained that His house is a house of love, filled with disciples who love, who aren’t seeking to be blessed, but who are rather seeking to bless others.

Chapter Six: Is it Possible to Feel Nothing But Love?


So, what do you think?

Rather than remain in the darkness of church based order and obedience based thinking, can we break free from this imprisonment of selfishness and simply love, which is to be led by the Spirit, which according to Paul, gives life?

Rather than thinking about a future reward, can our reward be the bliss of a positively energized life here and now, as we walk in the constant light of the Spirit of God?

Worthiness isn’t required.

By God’s grace alone, through faith alone, we can walk in love.

And, when we walk in love, we walk in the presence of God, who is love.

If you want the most amazing bliss in your life, the only way I know of, is to walk in love. But, don’t take my word for it. Experience it for yourselves. You know it’s the true path. The Holy Ghost has told you it’s true. Don’t let the church lead you astray from this path.

For a time, after my excommunication, I was tempted to obey church leaders, in order to again obtain membership, because I missed the church provided feeling of hope, of Godhood and Celestial glory.

However, I was kept back from acting on this temptation, because the love I felt in my heart, through rejecting the church’s law, obedience, and blessing seeking mentality, was more peaceful than that Celestial hope.

Ironically, through rejecting the church’s way of thinking, of seeking to be blessed, and instead, thinking only of blessing others, it turned out that my life is so much happier, where I ended up being wrapped up in Celestial love, even the presence of God, which is no longer a future hope, but is now a present reality within me.

Course, still, there have been times when I’ve lost that loving feeling, but each time I don’t feel complete love for others, where I’m judging others by some sort of law/rules, I’ve prayed to God, and by the grace of God, each and every time, my heart was changed, where I was delivered from the darkness of feeling anything less than love.

Also, because it’s not within our power to experience a loving heart without divine intervention, there’s no self-glory, nor self-righteousness in it, as a loving heart is only received by the grace of God through humble prayer, with all glory going to God.

Now, compare this to those who obey commandments, who don’t love, who don’t seek to bless others, but who seek to be blessed, through obedience, who can’t help but self-glory, who can’t help but feel self-righteous, because they believe they’ve earned or deserve great blessings, who carry the heavy burden of obedience, who aren’t lowly of heart, but who think very highly of themselves.

Jesus declared, “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest, take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest unto to your soul, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Wouldn’t you rather have a light burden? Isn’t Jesus saying, that His light burden and easy yoke, is to possess a lowly heart of love for others, like He has? I’ve found this to be true, that with a love filled heart, my life’s burden and yoke is very light. And, I’m free, I’m free of Satan’s misery, as Jesus said would occur in the lives of those who continued in His word.

Chapter Seven: How Difficult is it, to Turn from Selfishness to Selflessness?


We’ve established that Satan can be cast out of our lives, by recognizing that when we feel dark, it’s only because we’ve believed some sort of lie, which allows the darkness to stay with us, until we detect the lie, at which point the darkness will leave us.

We’ve established that blessing seeking is selfish, as it’s in the realm of seeking to “get,” rather than to “give.“ And, we’ve established that heavenly bliss is experienced by those who “give,” by those who love.

We’ve established that those who obey law/rules, expecting to “get” heavenly bliss as a future reward for their obedience, are prevented from experiencing bliss here and now, because they think it’s only possible in the future.

We’ve established that all hatred stems from those who seek to “get,” because only those who want to “get” something more than they have, are hateful and angry, as opposed to those who are minded to “give,” who love, who aren’t seeking to “get,” and so they don’t feel any hatred.

And, we’ve established that it’s possible to become such a “giver,” that we can get to the point where we feel nothing but love for others, where we live in the presence of God, where we experience that light burden and easy yoke promised by Jesus.

But, even though having a loving heart is so rewarding in and of itself, why aren’t more people seeking to follow Christ by being “givers,” why are only a few finding and walking the path that he walked, the straight and narrow path that leads to life?

It’s important to understand, that there’s a spiritual war going on, and needed supplies to support the troops on both side are given by either Satan or God, to keep their followers headed in the spiritual directions they represent.

Blessings do, in fact, come to those who seek to “get” blessed. It’s true, that those who obey law/rules, with the expectation of great blessings, being selfishly minded, are blessed, but are the blessings from God, or Satan?

And, blessings come to those who don’t seek to “get” blessed through obedience, who instead seek to love and bless others, who despite not seeking for blessings, end up being divinely provided for, with sufficient for their needs, in order that they may continue to selflessly bless others.

In essence, both the selfish, and selfless, as they continue on their opposite paths, are supported, blessed, and sustained, until they eventually grow and mature into a state of selfish, or selfless, perfection.

Also, it’s easy to understand that the selfishness of stealing and killing are inspired of darkness, but what about coveting, which isn’t considered that bad by most people, yet actually, all stealing and killing are preceded by selfish coveting.

What about the selfishness of seeking to “get” blessed through obedience? Most consider this to be good, but will this way of thinking ever lead anyone to be selflessly minded, to be a “giver,” like our Savior? With an underlying motive to “get,” can blessing seekers ever achieve a “giving” mindset?

With so many people justifying selfishness as not too bad, and even good, is it any wonder why Jesus taught, “straight is the gate and narrow is the way that leadeth to life, and few there be that find it?”

In the LDS church, rather than teach members how to know the straight and narrow path, members are simply told to “follow the prophet,” because he knows the way, but how then, can they actually know whether or not the prophet is leading them correctly?

It’s confusing in the church, because in one breath, church leaders will teach members to selflessly “give,” to bless others, to love, then in another breath, encourage them to selfishly seek to “get” blessed, through obedience.

And, I’ve wondered for a long time, why the church insists on members blindly depending on a prophet to lead them, rather than teaching them how to know the path for themselves, but now, it makes sense to me, that because the church’s path is so contradictory, because it vacillates between the opposites of giving and getting, leaders can’t actually explain the path they’re walking.

Joseph Smith taught, that all blessings come from obedience, which leads people to be “getters,” and he also taught, that people should love, which leads them to be “givers,” and so, even when the church began, members weren’t walking a straight path, but one that zig zags.

Also, the church teaches, that “it’s impossible for a prophet to lead the church astray,” and this adds pressure on members to refrain from questioning the church’s zig zag back and forth path between giving and getting.

In fact, because of this statement, because It’s believed, “it’s impossible for a prophet to lead the church astray,” the church even feels the need to excommunicate members who dare to challenge the church’s path, which is exactly what happened to me.

In my opinion, it’s important to understand, that the church’s, so called, “inspired path” of following the prophet, who they think can’t lead them astray, actually leans most heavily, in the direction of selfish “getting,” because obedience with the expectation of blessings is emphasized above loving others.

In the church, because love isn’t mentioned in the sacrament prayers, neither in worthiness interviews, nor in temples, aren’t members actually being led down a path that subtly creates within them, mindsets that seek to “get,” more than seeking to “give?”

Still, the church would argue, “all is well,” but is all well? Even in LDS scripture, 2 Nephi 28:21 predicted, speaking of Satan’s subtle deception, “And others will he pacify, and lull them away into carnal security, that they will say: All is well in Zion; yea, Zion prospereth, all is well—and thus the devil cheateth their souls, and leadeth them away carefully down to hell.”

Isn’t selfless “giving” of God, and selfish “getting” of Satan? I believe so, but you don’t need to take my word for it, nor do you need to depend on me to show you the way, for you can know this is true, for yourselves. In fact, I’ll bet you already know it’s true.

So, if you’re currently on the path of selfishly seeking “get,” if you’re on the path of obedience and self-righteousness, thinking you deserve so much reward for your goodness, are you convinced, now, that maybe it’s better for you to make a U-Turn, and start walking the path of seeking to love and “give?”

After-all, it’s only when we cease from seeking to get, and start seeking to give, that we’re born again.

However, based on my experience, I’d have to say, that it’s much easier said, than done, to turn from selfishness to selflessness. Selfishness doesn’t give up easily, where dark forces will even punish those who once walked in selfishness, who want to walk the opposite path of selflessness, although God does and will sustain those who repent and venture into the light.

In my case, over time, although I always enjoyed a heart filled with love, as I changed from seeking to be blessed, to wanting to bless others, all blessings that had been given to me, that I sought for, through obedience to LDS dictated law/rules, were taken back from me.

As I sought to change from being selfish to being selfless, my church membership was taken from me, my marriage ended, I lost my job, and my business investments failed, even to the point that I was barely able to make ends meet, where I was on the verge of complete bankruptcy.

And, even mentally, in order to walk the path of thinking myself the least, and servant of all, like Christ thought of himself, I was led to give up on the most important hope to me, that of expecting the Celestial glory in the hereafter.

Basically, in order to get rid of this Celestial expectation, which was based in self-righteousness, I was led to be grateful, and accepting, of even the lowest kingdom of glory, if that’s what I actually deserved after this life.

It’s been a tough journey, but through it all, God has been with me, as I’ve felt so much love in my heart.

It’s been, as if, all that I have acquired through selfishly seeking to obtain it, all that Satan has given me, for supporting his cause, all the blessings, including the self-righteous hope of Celestial glory, even the hope of godhood, has been taken back, from me, however, through it all, my heart has felt so loving, which is better, in my opinion, than all that stuff.

But, then, after losing so much, things began to change. A few months after I lost my job, I was hired for a job that paid more than the job I lost, which came with the prompting, that I could now pay back, over time, all the money I had borrowed and lost in the investments that went bad.

And, in this new job, as I’ve sought to give my best and contribute to the business, rather than thinking, what’s in it for me, without me asking for them, raises have kept coming and coming, along with surprise bonuses, until now, all my debts are completely paid off, including my mortgage.

Also, about five years ago, I was led into marriage a second time, but this time, my motivation wasn’t, at all, based on seeking to be qualified for the highest degree of the Celestial kingdom, like was the case with my first marriage.

This time, my decision to marry was based, solely on my desire to act on the deep love I felt for my fiancée, and since that time she and I have experienced such a happy marriage filled with delight.

So, how about you? Will you walk this path that few have found? Will you, through humble prayer, ask God for a change of heart, that your heart might be changed from being selfish to being selfless, as it’s not possible to experience this without divine intervention?

I can’t say, whether or not you’ll lose as much as I did, nor can I predict, that if you do lose a bunch of things, you’ll gain a bunch back, I’m not exactly sure how that works, but I can guarantee, that your heart will be filled, more and more, with love, until you feel nothing but love for others, which is amazingly peaceful and heavenly.

Chapter Eight: Am I Happy, or am I Thinking, I Can’t be Happy, Until…?

Ask yourself, am I happy, or am I thinking, I can’t be happy, until…?

If you’re a “giver,” aren’t you always happy?

If you’re a “getter,” aren’t you always thinking, I can’t be happy, until…?

In life, aren’t we always, either seeking to find a reason to be happy, or a reason, not to be happy?

And, for those who habitually find reasons, not to happy, even if they “get” what they think will make them happy, isn’t there always, in the back of their minds, the idea that they need to “get,” even something more, to be happy?

On the other hand, those who habitually find reasons to be happy, who don’t think about “getting,” who don’t covet, who aren’t ever angry or hate others because they want something more from them, that’s being withheld from them, who love others, and are minded toward “giving,” aren’t they always happy?

And, aren’t these, actually, the only two paths that we can walk, where one goes to hell, to a state of mind that always thinks about why they can’t be happy, and the other to heaven, to a state of mind where only happiness is ever felt?

Also, isn’t there freedom, in the mindset of “giving,” in loving others, where we’re always happy, because in this mindset, aren’t we always in control of our happiness?

On the other hand, isn’t there bondage, in the mindset of “getting,” where we’re always, not happy, until…, because in this mindset, aren’t we always thinking, we can’t be happy, until someone else changes, or until we “get” what we want, where others control our happiness?

Remember in chapter one, how it’s explained that when we feel dark, we’ll also always have thoughts of who or what to blame for our dark feeling? Is it true, that others, outside of ourselves, can control how we feel? Or, is this a lie, that once recognized, will cause the darkness to leave us?

How often do businesses, churches, politicians, friends, and even our families, try to convince us that we can’t be happy, until…? How often do they encourage us to be “getters,” to obey or trust them, where they promise happiness in return? Aren’t they lying to us? Aren’t they trying to convince us that we can’t be happy, until…? And, if we believe them, aren’t we opening a door to darkness in our lives?

Basically, those who believe the lie, that they can’t be happy, or shouldn’t be happy, until…, are always in bondage to those seeking to control them. And, those who are happy, who believe that they’re in control of their happiness, are always free from bondage.

So, when considering everything said in this book, it’s my opinion, that religious blessing seeking, or as the book title calls it, “Religious B.S.,” will not lead anyone to the happiness promised by their church leaders, as it’s always the path of control/bondage, as it’s always the path of “getting,” of not being happy, until…, which ultimately leads to never being happy.

Basically, the idea of blessing seeking, the idea of “getting,” in order to be happy, is a lie, as it will never lead to happiness, because in the back of the minds of “getters,” even if they “get” something they’ve wanted, they always think there’s something more to “get,” before they can be happy.

Also, because the idea of “getting,” in order to be happy, is a lie, those who seek to be blessed, through obeying law/rules, actually invite darkness into them, and that darkness remains with them, where they’re in bondage to that darkness, so long as they continue to believe that deception.

In reality, God inspires us to be free, to be “givers,” to love, so we can always be happy. And, Satan tries to control us, by leading us to be “getters,” to not be happy, until…, which prevents us from ever being happy. It’s as simple as that.

And, even if you don’t agree with me, I’ll still be happy, but will you be? :)

Ask yourself, am I happy, or am I thinking, I can’t be happy, until…?

Best,

Aaron McMillan

Click here to review my 23rd postcard dated August 17, 2020.

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