It wasn't until my incident in English last week that I stopped to consider the polygamy of the early church. And it wasn't until I read a post over at Feminist Mormon Housewives that really makes me think about the situation... and consider Joseph Smith's motives for what he did. Because, honestly, I don't know what to believe.
The Church does not deny his polygamy, (see here, a church website) but I've found that it still remains a secret to a lot of people. The members of my branch are more than willing to remain in blissful ignorance about the early church; at least my friends in seminary are. I think what I need to do is ask the question myself, and get the truth from someone I can trust to give it to me. Even though the subject is extremely uncomfortable to me, I can feel myself being prompted to learn the truth for myself. I'm thinking that this information is going to serve me for something in the future, possibly a conversion. So whether I like it or not, this is territory I'm being told to address. All I can do is trust Heavenly Father, I suppose.
I have a firm testimony of the church. I've had many experiences that allow me to have that testimony. However, it's so difficult for me when I get these mixed messages that make me wonder... was Joseph Smith adulterous with his polygamy, as some have accused him? Is this true? I don't know. That's something I have to find out. But I can see this leading me through very uncomfortable territory, through lots of anti-Mormon literature, and all that will do is frustrate me and anger me.
A sister at my church told me she would call me about the incident I had, and no doubt she intended to help me through this. But she has a large family, is no doubt very busy with them, and has not called me as of yet. I'm hoping she will, because I can feel myself becoming increasingly perturbed by where my mind is leading me at this point. I trust that talking to her will help me, because her children are home schooled, but play their sports at the local private (Baptist) Christian school. They're frequently accosted by Baptist students who have made it their mission to convert them; so I'm sure Sister Strange has dealt with MANY of these questions...
I hope she can help me with all of this... because honestly, this is no time for me to slip into an identity crisis. I've been preparing too vigorously to go to the Temple on Saturday to have this problem right now.
So while I think it's a stupid thing to do to remain blissfully ignorant as a defense mechanism to these feelings I'm having about the subject, it's going to have to wait. And I don't care if that doesn't make sense! That's why I'm Paradox!