Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Defining "good"

My younger son was ready to head back to his apartment after Christmas.  I gave him a big hug and said an automatic, "Be good".  He looked down at me, right into my eyes, and said, "You be good too, mom."  It occurred to me that the two of us now have very different ideas of  "good".  He had gone to church with his sisters and dad while I slept in.  I was heading off to work on the sabbath at the job that's been paying his rent.  I have no temple recommend.  No garments.  I don't even know where my scriptures might be but I'm sure they have a very thick layer of dust on them.  I know that's what he meant by good, but it's no longer what I mean.  It doesn't matter what calling you hold in the church, how many meetings you go to, how many times you attend the temple or how well you know the scriptures.  I know people who do all that and more but are NOT "good" by any definition.

I mean work hard.  Keep a job and do your best at it.  It doesn't matter how menial the job is, it is honest work and that's the important thing.  If you choose to go to college, study hard and get good grades.   Make good friends and be a good friend.  Be tolerant and kind.  Love others for who they are, not for what you hope to turn them into.  If you find someone you want to share your life with, wonderful!  But don't get married for any other reason.  Do things because it feels right for you, not because someone else thinks you should.  Live a well-rounded life.  Work hard but play hard too.  Do things that bring you joy each day. 

Doing all that makes you good. And good enough.  


  1. I couldn't agree more with these ideas! Isn't it liberating to know that being 'good' means what it really should mean? Basic good to humanity, which is most important? Shedding the 'to do' list and focusing on a more meaningful life makes me feel real, sincere, honest. It's hard when they don't see it the same way you do though. That's where my struggle lies.

  2. Fanny, I'd love to know how you cope. I gather your children are older, like mine, and well indoctrinated.

  3. Lately I'm not coping too well. I take 2 steps ahead, 1 step back. Have a TBM married daughter, a recently returned missionary daughter, and 2 others getting more and more indoctrinated. We don't say much to them because they've flat out told us they don't want to hear it. We did such a damn good job raising them ;) Sigh. But... can I really complain that they're obedient to what they've been taught? It's their parents who are disobedient.

    So we're coping through a support group (CALM), good friends, and blogging (I read em, my hubby writes one). It's a slow process and we all understand what a shitty deal we've bean dealt... and I realize it will probably take years for my family to absorb it all and completely accept our decision.

    So how are YOU coping?

  4. The farther I get away from the cult, the more I feel genuinely sad for all those people who allow so-called prof-its and apostles to define "good" for them. The sheeple are simply not allowed to think for themselves and define what good means to them -- because that would be bad. So their "goodness" is motivated not by what feels right but by guilt and fear of displeasing a god they've never met and their leaders. That's not good.

    It's much more meaningful and right to define good for ourselves. It feels much better to treat someone the way I want to be treated because *I* decided on my own that is *my* good; not because the hypocritical gawd of horny men gave me a bunch of rules that don't apply to him or his assholyish leaders.

    To me being good means being true to myself. As for those people who don't get that -- f*** 'em.

  5. CD, tell us how you REALLY feel. :) I completely agree with you in my own understated way.

    Fanny, lately I'm not coping well either. I started this blog and that's about it. I'll have to check out CALM. I've been attending Family Fellowship but they don't meet very often. Some days are definitely worse than others.

  6. Oh, that's got to be hard, watching your kids watch you in that way. I was lucky; my daughter was the first to leave the morg (she was 15, now 17). We listened to her reasons, and that, combined with the whole Prop 8 debacle, woke us up from the brainwashing. Hopefully your kids will come around some day. Hugs!

  7. JZ....you are a great momma! Your definition of wanting your son to be "good" is so.......good.
    You are blowing me away with your posts!

  8. Zena,

    I was turned on to your blog by my cousin who admires you and your posts, just last night. I am captivated by your honesty and truthfulness! Your sincerity, hilarity, and strength are always present and I so admire you as a person who knows herself and what she stands for! I am refreshed and am a follower of your words!! I have been reading for about 2 hours now, and cannot get enough :)Love this blog! CD is absolutely right! Please right a book! I'll be first in line to buy it!

  9. Welcome Jolie and Chelise! Chelise, if you're anything like Jolie then you are awesome. Drop by anytme!