No, nobody has asked me where I've gone or whether I'm still alive since my blog's been pretty quiet lately. I'm not disappointed about the lack of inquisitive e-mails. I mean, since when was I a consistent, dependable, regular blogger? I just blog when I have thoughts to share that I think might be interesting and/or amusing to my readers, or--in rarer instances--mainly just cathartic for me. Most of you who know me know very well that I've been busily gallivanting around and simply not still long enough for thought-out blog posts.
That said, it's possible that part of the silence is because there's a facet of my life about which I've generally only hinted in my blog and haven't known how to introduce smoothly: agnosticism. It has set in rather deeply over the last couple of years, and despite some stress of adapting to a different context and paradigm for life, the universe, and everything, and the discomfort of likely being perceived as being in a sad spiritual decline by many close to me who believe a testimony of LDS doctrine to be a sign of righteousness and who believe LDS doctrine to be absolute truth, it's not been so very rocky a road. It just...is. It's been challenging, question-inducing, and even a bit sad in some ways but clarifying, peaceful, and beautiful in others.
I'm bringing this up primarily because I don't mean to make myself out to be something I'm not or to deceive any readers as to my beliefs or lack thereof. I've been on a bit of a spiritual "walkabout" for close to a year now, not attending church regularly and exploring the possibility of life without...well, of life and eternity from a different perspective. This probably conjures all kinds of questions, fears, tears, or even rejoicing from some of you. Some of you may think I must be turning away to justify some decisions. Some of you may think leaving the church means being free to find a same-sex partner. I'm pretty sure neither of those is true, as I'll probably write about in the future.
I have so much more to say on this subject and to clarify about what this does and does not mean. For now, I'll say that everything I've written here has been completely sincere, and I still firmly believe in principled living and general "goodness", whatever that means independent of the context of presumably God-given edicts. I have more to say about the tension of feeling LDS in a sense but deeply questioning truth down to the very existence of God. I have more to say on the journey from Peter Priesthood to...well, wherever I am now. I have more to say on how the religious/doctrinal questioning interplays and doesn't interplay with my own same-sex attraction. I have more to say on the questions that surely come, such as, "But you knew it was true in the past, right?" This aspect of my "journey" may likely become more prominent in future posts, as it's proving not to be a brief phase and is a big "if" in my life right now and for the last few years.
I still see the world through very LDS-tinted glasses, of course. My friends are mostly active, faithful LDS, and I don't wish to alienate myself from them because they matter to me, and I love their traits and identify to their adherence to principles I agree with. If my perspective ever shifts back, I hope they'll be not "waiting for me to come back" but with me still. I'm not particularly interested in gaining converts to my perspective. The agnosticism comes with the freedom to say, "I just don't know," without having to prove myself to those who may make all kinds of assumptions about my character based on this.
I won't be spending my energy trying to convince my faithful friends and readers that I'm right to think or question the way I do, but I will write, as I have, to share my thoughts and perspectives as they come without tiptoeing around my lack of burning testimony in "the gospel". But along with this comes a reservation: if someday I were to become more "faithful" again, I would hate to think that I "led some astray" by my preaching, which has been a big reason for not going into this in the past. But the need for authenticity has become greater, and this perspective colors my thoughts and decisions to some degree, so I will share more of this facet of my journey, whether right or wrong, good or bad, to avoid a potentially even more harmful kind of deception through half-truth. Now you know, though many of you have already suspected (even if only by the self-description on my sidebar): you are not reading the blog of a fully faithful, active LDS moho but one who still believes in living a principled life of goodness.
As one quite conservative, active LDS fellow I talked with about this said, "You're on a spiritual walkabout of sorts, and that may be necessary on your path to truth, as it was for me, even if it takes a year or five." So it is, no offense intended to the true practice of walkabout which I think is more ceremonial and structured. I don't know the end, or if there is one, but I feel freer than ever to pursue it and be open to it, no matter what it may be.