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Comments about ‘Normons: A site to prove just how normal Mormons are’

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Published: Wednesday, April 23 2014 6:00 a.m. MDT

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JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

As far as the religion, lots of religions have quirks that could appear "weird" to others. I dont find the LDS religion any "weirder" then others.

Now, when it comes to culture, I have had mixed experiences.

In LA, I had a close working relationship on a project with a LDS from LA.

He was normal. I enjoyed working with him. He was non judgmental and accepting.

My experience in Utah was a bit different. I think that the concentration of LDS in Utah fosters an attitude that is hard for "an outsider" to feel comfortable in.

When you are completely surrounded by those who have very similar beliefs and attitudes, it becomes easy to be emboldened with what is normal and right. One can become rigid in their thinking and become intolerant of those different from the norm.

I.E, In Utah, everyone knows it is wrong to drink a beer or play golf or mow your lawn on Sunday. And some may feel justified in telling you so. In LA? They would not think of it, LDS or not.

morpunkt
Glendora, CA

Sadly, we as a nation, are so grossly under educated, that many Americans still know very little about Mormons, especially in the East Coast and Deep South. The major news agencies certainly do not accommodate the LDS church, like other special interest groups, in terms of educating the general public.
Even with Mitt Romney having run 2x for president, along with the exposure of many LDS entertainers, athletes, businessmen, politicians, etc, most Americans don't have a clue. And as far as other religions are concerned, they most definitely don't have their facts correct, concerning our beliefs, for the most part. This is an indirect indictment against our country's collective IQ, IMHO.

happymomto9
Saratoga Springs, UT

I love the concept of being "relate-able" but I must confess that as a convert I have been greatly disappointed how "normal" so many Mormons are. especially here in utah members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints seem to do the minimum. they don't want to risk being a different by being more righteous.
what happened to being a "peculiar" people?
why are so many addicted to meds or on prozac? the Gospel should be setting us free. but it just seems to be stressing us out!

Esquire
Springville, UT

A Mormon who claims not to know "everything" about the Church - I don't know what is really meant by that. But trying convince others that Mormons are "normal" is just another manifestation of Mormon cultural insecurity and a desire to be accepted. This goes back to the Brigham Young days, and is apparently so ingrained into the culture that perhaps it will always be.

pragmatistferlife
salt lake city, utah

That's what we non believers have been trying to tell you forever. You are just normal folks (some whacky beliefs, but then all religions have those)no special powers, no special status, no exclusive information. Just normal folk with all the problems of the rest of us.

Free Agency
Salt Lake City, UT

@happymomto9

Re: your mentioning of why so many Mormons are on Prozac or addicted to other meds, I'm not sure what conclusion you're drawing: do you think it's because the Mormon Gospel is so hard to live? Or because Mormons have stopped being a "peculiar people?"

From what I've read, a major reason for the Prozac and meds is because it's hard for many Mormons to live up to the Mormon ideal of getting everything done breezily and cheerfully--e.g., "Molly Mormon." And these people are depressed because they think there's something wrong with them, when everyone else seems to be doing it all just fine. (But *are* they? Or, outside of the public eye, are they depressed too?)

The greatest irony about being normal is that it's normal *not* to be just like everyone else. We're all individuals. And the moment we try to force ourselves into fitting perfectly into some template--we stop being normal! And we pay for that with things like depression.

So let's all be normal, Mormon and non-Mormon alike--by truly being ourselves. Maybe we can put Prozac out of business!

iron&clay
RIVERTON, UT

This Norman site is part of individual members of the Church being asked by Pres. Ballard to not let others misinform the world about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
Individual members have the ability to publish about themselves with today's www.

Pendergast
Salt Lake City, UT

to happymomto9 & Esquire... Kudos. The 1st things I thought of as well were being a "peculiar people" & Insecurity.

**normal is another persons definition of what is socially acceptable**

samhill
Salt Lake City, UT

I have to admit I find this whole conversation, about whether or not some LDS people are trying too hard to be "normal", more than a little baffling.

I understand the angst regarding the importance of not being too far outside the norms of society and the negative consequences of consequently being regarded by too many (you can decide what percentage "too many" is) as unwanted or undesirable. There are many examples of social outcasts (religious minorities, racial minorities, etc.) from both our past and present that offer ample evidence of the down sides of being outside the "in crowd".

But, if my understanding of LDS and most other Christian doctrine is correct, then it would seem the ideal interpretation of social acceptance is completely universal and excludes no one. In other words, normalcy and social standing in general has no meaning. The "in crowd" includes **everyone**. I think that was the whole point of the parable of the Good Samaritan. We are ALL children of the same Heavenly Father (God) who loves each one of us, individually, exactly the same, whether we are "normal" in the context of our human societies or not.

So, "normal" is a faulty metric.

The Caravan Moves On
Enid, OK

@ Esquire - Springville, UT - "A Mormon who claims not to know "everything" about the Church - I don't know what is really meant by that. But trying convince others that Mormons are "normal" is just another manifestation of Mormon cultural insecurity and a desire to be accepted. This goes back to the Brigham Young days, and is apparently so ingrained into the culture that perhaps it will always be."

A "manifestation of Mormon cultural insecurity"?

Yeah, it's gotta be that.....

Please stop trying to read into this something it so clearly is not.

This is simply a member of the LDS church letting others, who are not familiar with LDS belifes, things like....

- we listen to rock music
- we only have one wife
- we use electricity
- we use cell phones and computers
- we don't all have 12 kids (heck, most of us DON'T have more than 4 or 5 these days)
- we don't worhsip purple octopuses (heard that one in Korea.....yes, really)
- we don't worship Joseph Smmith
- we don't have horns on our heads
- we do believe in Jesus Christ

To the creators of "Normons"...nice job!

birdbath
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

It all depends on what normal is. If normal is keeping your mouth shut most of the time and living a good life, serving others inconspicuously, being a good neighbor/friend/family member. Being honest at work and in dealing with others. Being sober. I wish all those things were normal. I think they should be. I think many people can and should achieve to be this type of normal, but the truth is, these qualities are not the norm (not for many LDS). Popularity seems to be the norm these days. Nice clothes, nice house, big title at work, the picture perfect family. Unfortunately that is the norm for lots and lots of LDS folks.

Shaun
Sandy, UT

Mormons outside are typically normal. They are also less judgemental and more inclusive in my opinion.

Jamescmeyer
Midwest City, USA, OK

On the one hand, I'd like to think that most people by now realize that latter day saints are relatable, fair, critically-thinking human beings after all that's gone on, the whole mormon.org revamp, and the general election.

On the other, the obsession people had with Mitt Romney's religion during said election (and the 2008 primaries), among many other things in my own life, say that it's still a major thing.

There is no insecurity or farce involved; the idea is to stand up and say "Hey, I'm a reasonable human being, and I know that I am a child of God." Other people increasingly try to render the two as mutually exclusive traits, ironically resulting in people who have neither.

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

Necessary?

iluvnz
Vernal, UT

I find it interesting that LDS people are perceived in so many different ways. If we (Mormons) try to be "normal", we are castigated for not living our religion and being hypocrites. If we do our best to live the values by which we have come to be known, we are perceived as too righteous or "holier than thou". This is not an attempt to play the "poor me" card, I'm merely making an observation. As Free Agency put it, "So lets all be normal...by truly being ourselves". Live your values and people will either accept you, or they won't. What really counts is our Savior's acceptance.

Tall Tamz
South Jordan, UT

This takes courage and I respect and encourage the author of the blog. Taking action on your feelings is a great skill. Keep it up!

Pendergast
Salt Lake City, UT

to pragmatistferlife

wanting to be normal/accepted yet thinking they are special is IMO what causes the cognitive dissonance.

to Free Agency

"So let's all be normal, Mormon and non-Mormon alike--by truly being ourselves. Maybe we can put Prozac out of business!"

If one is truly at peace with themselves and their place in the world then they need for prozac nad the like goes away. The Quixotic journey to be "normal" is exactly what big Pharma, the retail industry, etc... want.

jamesHH
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

I sang this song as a kid. There was a time when Mormons were proud of their uniqueness.

I’m a Mormon, yes I am!
And if you want to study a Mormon I’m a living specimen.
Maybe you think I’m just like anybody else you see,
But trust in my word,
You’ll quickly observe,
I’m different as can be!

MrsH
Altamont, UT

Myself, I never know whether to be ashamed or complimented when someone says "I didn't know you were a Mormon!"
Not sure if I am not living my beliefs or if I am (I hope!) living them well!
I do think I want to be "normal" if that includes loving my Savior and being a good person.
This article has given me a lot to think about.
Keep up your good work.

Esquire
Springville, UT

@ The Caravan Moves On, thank you for substantiating my point. There are lots of uninformed people out there, not just about Mormons, but about politics, science, entertainers, and so on and so on. It will always be the case. Who cares if some have silly, ill-informed ideas about Mormons? I'm secure enough in myself and my religion that I'm not going to let myself get all twisted over it. Those with whom I deal know I'm fairly normal and it just isn't an issue. But I assert again, the LDS culture has an inherent, in the DNA, insecurity about itself and its place in the wider world. I have looked at this issue for a very long time and not only is it fascinating, but I don't know when we will evolve out of it.

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