Episode 225: Top Ten Ways to Transition Out of the Church

6 comments on “Episode 225: Top Ten Ways to Transition Out of the Church”

  1. jdh Reply

    Very strange podcast…

    You should listen to it…it sounds like all the ex-mo’s are a bunch of social misfits that need to get a life.

    I think that your criticisms of singling out the church are unfair. Why is the church to blame that you didn’t know how to interact in parties where alcohol is served. The church isn’t to blame because you may have been socially awkward.

    I grew up in Utah but have lived outside for the past 20 years. You have to be self adjusted, open to building lasting friendships both in and outside the church in order to live away from family. I am not some superstar…but I have made it work.

    Bottom line – lots of ex-mo’s are stuck online, in a cloistered online community interacting with people that only have hating the church in common and they wonder why they become so negative. That is a sad existence.

    The solution you seem to be describing is to look beyond yourself, focus on things that enrich yourself and/or help others, and put yourself with people who you would not normally connect with. Sounds like going to church.

    • Mark Johnson Reply

      …except you get to hold on to an extra 10% of your income.

      Most ex-mormons I know are actually pretty decent, happy, well-adjusted people. Maybe you already know one. If not, it may be worth making a new acquaintance. And who knows? You might learn something.

    • Megan von Ackermann Reply

      I think you’re maybe over simplifying the message a bit.

      First, this is (and is explicitly) a first-person narrative. John said from the start that he deliberately made this a one-man show because in that format it becomes personal, it becomes an intimate story. That means, of course, that it also has a single view-points, although in John’s case that viewpoint has been widened and deepened by the large number of people he has had the opportunity to interact with. However, the fact remains that yes, this list reflects the experience and insight of one person and will never, therefore, relate to absolutely everyone. I would argue that this is a good thing. Efforts to be applicable to everyone dilute the meaning, value and applicability of the message radically (one could argue that correlation is an example of that).

      Second, there is a very reasonable and valid argument that the church DOES cause social problems for members because a) it actively encourages people to socialise only within the in-group of the religion where roles are quite extensively scripted, b) because of those scripted roles relationships are frequently artificial and lack true intimacy, c) the script is particular to the religion and is often useless or even problematic outside of member interactions, and d) the script also provides roles for non-members [Potential Converts; Anti-Mormons; Apostates etc] which colour those friendships and relationships as well. Naturally when the script is removed there is a feeling of loss, and depending on how deeply that script was accepted and followed, that loss can be extreme.

      Third, your final paragraph is really his whole point. Going to church DID provide those things for many ex-mo’s, although those things came with a price that was (for them) too high to pay. But it is not the only place, or even the best place (or, some argue, even a good place) to find those things. This list is just one suggestion for how to not only replace some of the things that were positive in their church experience, but to go deeper and not only look for more but give more back as well.

    • W D Reply

      I suppose it’s also possible to just say you didn’t like the podcast, instead of casting a blanket judgment on the millions on ex mormons in the world based on your negative experiences of the couple hundred you see on the internet.

      I’m not a doctor or anything though so I might be wrong and you could have a sane valid point.

  2. Megan von Ackermann Reply

    I absolutely loved this one, and I think it’s valuable beyond leaving the LDS church (or any strongly controlling organisation). Ages ago my family sort of took a look around and realised that we have one go not only at this life, but at each day we’ve got. I only have one shot at this Wednesday, one shot on the upcoming weekend. It’s not that every day has to be amazing and fabulous and lived to the limit, more that recognising that there is opportunity in each day to savour the experience, to make a new connection, to learn a new story – it can be small and petty and silly, but even so it’s something gained. So the twin of philosophies living richly and living to create something lasting are, IMO the best possible way to have a joyful life and, I would think (as I haven’t quite gotten there yet), to reach the end of it with as few regrets as possible.

  3. Michael Nielsen Reply

    This one was so great! I have been careful not to inundate my wife with my atheistic/skeptic/exmo ideology. But she has finally decided on her own to leave the church.

    This was the first non-pro podcast she has listened to, and it helped her to get confirmation of how many of us there are, and that she can still have a joyful life.

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