Saturday, October 20, 2007

Mormons and Muslims

Tonight I attended a really cool lecture given by a professor of religion from BYU named Daniel C. Peterson. He is the head of LDS/Islamic translations at BYU. He spoke at the Irvine Stake Center and the Islamic community was invited as well. He spoke on the similarities and differences between Mormonism and Islam, and the Church's view on other faiths. It was amazing. Brother Peterson really knows his stuff and was able to deliver his message in a very respectful manner, while not avoiding the difficult questions at all. He was very entertaining and intelligent, a mix I feel like I don't see too often. Anyway, I learned a lot and it really made me realize that we are all children of God how much we have in common with Muslims. Now obviously there are some major theological differences, but Brother Peterson explained a lot of the beliefs that we share. We worship the same God and they are definitely a very devout group and adhere to many of the same standards that we do. i knew most of that already, but tonight it really sunk in for me.

It was also interesting to realize how much our histories are similar as far as being persecuted and how we are perceived in the United States. Afterwards I got to talk to a member of the Muslim congregation and I gained a new respect for them. I never felt any sort of hatred for Muslims in general, and definitely knew that Osama bin Laden does not represent Islam very well; but alas, Islam is new to America and unfortunately we as Americans view them as foreign and sometimes with suspicion. I guess it will take a while to dispel those myths. I imagine it is similar to how people view Latter-day Saints with suspicion; but once they meet a Latter-day Saint, they view us differently. It was a great experience and refreshing to see how mush we have in common, especially with all of the focus on differences today. It was nice to recognize that we are all people, children of our God and that we have so much in common.

Anyway, besides that I didn't do much today. I studied for the CPA exam and ran a few errands, but I found myself not wanting to do much. I really wanted to call Kaitlyn, but part of me did not want to. I can't describe it, but I just needed to be alone today and think. Dave is in Australia right now and Jared was gone all day. I needed to think today. I think I might be suffering from depression right now. All of my siblings definitely are diagnosed and known to have issues regarding depression, but I guess I always liked to think that I was immune to all of that. In reality, I think I might need to seek some professional help. I find myself not being able to cope with everything right now. I think part of my issue may be stemming from Tim's death. It really has hit me hard and made me reflect on my life in a way I never have before. Nobody around me knew Tim and I just with I could talk to somebody that would understand why I am so sad. That plus a stressful few days at work, worrying about the CPA exam, realizing that I will be spending Christmas alone here in Orange County, and really feeling like I have no friends is just piling up on top of me. But at the same time, I think that some of this is good for me. I feel like I need to be humbled so that I will be willing to accept God's will in my life. I feel like a big change is headed my way and I need to be ready for it. Who knows if I will be ready for it.

Yesterday at work, I got so frustrated and while at work I wrote the nastiest blog I could ever imagine. I was so frustrated with the way work was going and cannot imagine working at this client again. Unfortunately, I know that I will be back there in January for 2 VERY long weeks. Luckily, I did not publish the posting, though I still have it saved. The person that wrote that blog yesterday needs to move on. Yesterday at work was evidence that I still have a long way to go before I am the person I want to be. I have no patience for stupidity. That sounds so mean, but I don't know how else to say it. Anyway, hopefully I don't have too many more days like that, or my career at PwC will be a lot shorter lived than I ever imagined.

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