Almost one year ago, I resigned my membership in the mormon church. I placed a lot of thought into that decision. I knew there would be repercussions. I knew how very disappointed my family would be in me, that they would worry for my eternal soul, that they would think I am a very unhappy person. (The one thing that didn't occur to me is that they would interpret everything I do as being angry, odd.) I don't really blame them, they are taught by their church leaders from the time they are born that there is only one path to happiness, one path to heaven and that is through following their rules. If a person diverges even a little bit, they are considered bitter, unhappy, in hell. It is very controlling and it kept me in line for years; even when I wasn't happy following those rules. Fear and guilt are very controlling, I have discovered.
When I turned my resignation letter into the bishop, he tried to turn our talk into an interview of *worthiness*. He asked me if I was keeping the word of wisdom. I was taken back at first. I paused then asked him why would I keep something that I didn't believe in? He didn't know how to answer that. I wish now that I had more time to spend with him. (We were standing on his porch in zero degree weather). I wish that I could have asked him why, when it says right there in the mormon scriptures that the word of wisdom is not given as a commandment, but as advice, his church has turned it into a requirement to get a temple recommend (in order to get into the mormon heaven, a person must answer 9 questions to gain a temple recommend and attend their temple to be worthy to enter heaven. One of those questions is if they abstain from coffee, tea, tobacco and alcohol as listed in the word of wisdom). What started out as advice is now a requirement for them to get into heaven. How did that happen? I bet he couldn't tell me.
When blinders fall off and you are able to see things clearly, it is amazing how obvious things are. Even when I would study the word of wisdom, so much didn't make sense. Why does it say to eat meat sparingly, yet it isn't enforced within the church? Why is it okay to be obese in the church and not eat in moderation? Why does it say to eat food in season, yet this isn't followed and is out of date since we have transportation that provides for fruits and vegetables to be provided year round? Where does it say cola drinks are part of the word of wisdom yet so many are forbidden from drinking them?
None of this makes sense because it is nonsensical. As most things mormon, it evolved over time, not because of inspiration, but because of the dictates of man (IMO). Too bad they don't listen to the scientific research on wine and tea and coffee.