Sunday, January 23, 2005

Avoiding Cliches to an Extreme

The subtitle to this blog states that one of the reasons it is here is to laugh at Mormon culture. It has done just that to a great extent and it has been a very enjoyable part of posting and commenting on this blog (and I know, it's been far too long since I've posted!). As with all cultures, we have many quirks and conundrums that, when viewed with objectivity, are really quite silly and sometimes dangerous to ourselves and/or others.
Let me try to make this clear through an example dealing with my roommate. My roommates and I have grown somewhat tiresome of the many cliche things many members of the church do here at school. Things like getting criticized for not being dressed in Sunday clothes for devotional, growing facial hair between semesters, and not going to stadium singing. Some of the worst complaints are made in the school newspaper about people getting offended for an article they read that they obviously did not get the satire of.
Anyway, the danger I find hard to avoid is not in going the extreme that these people are, but in trying to avoid that by going too far the other direction. I feel like one of my roommates has done this. He hates hearing these complaints and seeing members of the church be so judgmental that he ends up judging them and raises his own trump to the case. He becomes satirical at inappropriate time and in inappropriate places, purposely grows his hair to the maximum (w/o braking the Honor Code), and avoids going to devotional. Even in controversial things, he makes no qualms about watching any R-rated movie, drinks caffeine incessantly, and so on.
Does this make any sense? I love the kid and am not really worried about his testimony or anything, I just find it dangerous to overcompensate for self-righteousness with anti-righteousness. I have fallen into this at times myself and can see it being just one more problem for we as followers of Christ to find that fine line between the two. Of being true followers of Christ who work to help our fellow men without condemning them.