Cold was drifting in with the neighbors dog’s voice when I woke up in my dark bedroom today. I opened the dusted blinds to check the forecast but things weren’t looking favorable, not that I could tell because I saw only black. So I hurried and stood out of the water stream behind the new shower curtain until the steam warmed enough to coax me in. I arrived to my class panting with a dripping head of shower and rain, and my students stared at me like they were bored and nervous (paper due at 8am. “we thought at 4pm.” Okay, by 4pm but I’m being real nice so you had better like me, please).

We talked about globalization and how it encompasses everything else and how they could write about avatar or invictus or torture in heath’s last movie, or poverty or aids or war. And I felt sad to think about Mandela in that tiny cell for twentysevenlongyearsofhislife. That is my life+five years. But my students don’t know my age because I trick them to think I am older to compensate for my doll baby face. My baby face framed by cold wet rain-and hot shower hair.

Waiting for those students to turn in their papers made it a long day so I went to hear about vampires: creepy, snarky, puffy guys with one nostril and pink skin, according to eastern European peasants in the eighteenth century.
A very long day.
My throat feels a little sore and my head is a bit aching but maybe it’s because I got too much sleep last night because I didn’t feel so hot when I went to bed (besides my temperature) but I felt cold when I woke up because it was misty and dark and still, with only one voice echoing in my room.


Hard things

Although I typically refrain from addressing anything serious or difficult via blogging, I feel compelled to confront the terribly hard topic of homosexuality. Most of you know that I am Mormon, and many of you are too. This is a very delicate topic, but I have been thinking about a lot lately--since Boyd K Packer's talk in general conference.

As is commonly known, many Mormons choose to abide by the 10 Commandments given to Moses in addition to others that have been given to prophets more recently. Two of the original 10 commandments are: Thou shalt not commit adultery, and, Thou shalt not covet. Like many other worshipers, including Christians and Jews, Mormons believe that no person is exempt from the edicts of God. We believe his word to be true and final.

That being said, homosexuality is a delicate issue. In his talk, Boyd Packer stated that God did not make people homosexual. I believe this to be true. I also believe that God did not give some people a particularly strong sex drive, health problems, mental disorders, or any manner of physical trials. I believe that those are the products of mortality, of having a body. And those who believe that God did make people homosexual (and who thus believe sodomy okay) do not believe God; he declared sodomy a sin.

I have heard multiple Mormons argue: "homosexual tendencies are no different from other trials. Some people have tendencies to be alcoholics, and others gamblers ect." While I am not trying to discredit anyone's opinions, I am not sure that those trials are similar at all. From what I understand (and I am no expert), many people feel attraction to the same sex from a very young age, and feel it at all times. Potential gamblers and alcoholics must first try gambling or alcohol to gain addictions; homosexuals don't need to fornicate to feel same-sex attraction. For this reason, I feel that this trial is particularly difficult, and I feel great sympathy for those with feelings of same-sex attraction (I am not trying to sound patronizing or reductive here).

Which brings me to my next point: the sin of homosexuality is sexual sin, covetousness, inappropriate thoughts. There is a distinction between acting upon tendencies and not acting. I believe that those who do not participate in or encourage those tendencies, who actively seek God's help, and who exercise faith will be blessed.

I believe the words of Boyd Packer. As I have said, this issue is hard and I debated for a long time about writing. I already fear some of the comments I may receive. Please know that Mormons believe in a gospel founded upon love, upon respect, upon kindness, upon not judging. And thus I think it is very important that Mormons recognize the difficulties surrounding this issue, that they do not dismiss and ignore it, that they make a conscious effort to think about it and to decide how they will treat their (spirit) brothers and sisters.

This may sound contradictory to those who disagree with me, but, my intent and Elder Packer's intent in speaking is not to be unkind or bigoted toward other people. It is to firmly support the commands of God.