Look, I'm not a BYU grad. I applied many years ago to appease my parents but I knew there were parts of the honor code even then that I wouldn't fully uphold. The Honor Code is not temple worthiness.
It is a document, inspired or not, that dictates what students at a particular university can or cannot do. There may or may not be good reasons why certain statues are in the honor code but life in a university is not life in the real world. I do appreciate your frustration and confusion since you have friends who attend BYU. Personally the wording makes me angry and feels like a huge step back from Christian love and acceptance by setting a double standard and making same-sex attraction implicitly despite saying it isn't explicitly a sin.
Such a great explanation of what you experience daily. I appreciate your honest sharing. We'll figure this out together. And, while the principles like the word of wisdom stem from Doctrine our bodies are temples for our Spirits , the application not drinking coffee, smoking, or even choosing to not drink soda is usually personal and very seldom "given" to us. It's our own application. It varies from person to person and grows as we grow. While it is implying everyone must live the application they have chosen at the University, they are allowed to do this.
LGBT BYU students explain why they chose to attend and stay - The Daily Universe
They are a private university. The even stickier problem is when you then have and encourage people to police their own interpretations dare I say, their own application of the application. Where a simple handshake between 2 guys even 2 gay guys may not directly violate the honor code although it says it could , an overzealous, "letter of the law" person may interpret to break the code.
A person could be turned in by the word of that person. Now, you head down a slipper slope. Thanks for the blog.
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I don't always fully agree with you although I do more than not , but I've thoroughly enjoyed reading your posts. I am so sorry for the pain you are going through. As others have stated, in this case, I think you are going with much too literal an interpretation. Although my experiences have been much different than yours, I have also struggled. I have found that when I go to people or institutions including the Church as an organization , I end up feeling confused and frustrated.
When I go to God with my questions, I end up feeling peace and a semblance of clarity. The bottom line is that you cannot rely on others to interpret things for you or to determine what is "right or wrong. Rely on that relationship and communication and carry on with your head held high. I wish you all the best as you continue to search for answers.
Here's my take on this, there is a code word that has layers of meaning that I believe will clear this up. I've noticed that when some people, especially older people use the word "intimacy," its code for sex. Personally, I think your intrepretation is way too literal. I agree that intimacy is a word that usually has different connotations depending on the generation using it.
The younger generation applies it to far more actions, while for the older it means sexual contact - similarly for homosexuality, which often means having sexual contact to the older generation and a broad spectrum of feelings to the younger. The verbiage " Would would and what did Jesus do? He hugged, kissed, and physically comforted his friends and apostles. As a High Priest who "came out" in the s, I had trouble with this issue in my wards when I became active again. As much as I, too, would want to follow the Honor Code, I know I would continue to be as affectionate as I felt was appropriate.
Great article and I'm sorry to hear that is such a frustrating situation for you. I believe that in this case what really matters is whether or not you are following the spirit of the law.
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Who's to say whether or not strictly platonic interactions male to male are sexually motivated. Only you can really know that. I don't what's it's like to feel the way you do but I know what's it's like to struggle. I commend you for staying worthy and faithful to what you know to be true and would encourage you to continue to do so. On another note I would discourage you from cuddling with other men.
That at least for me is meant to be quite intimate and strengthen bonds of physical attraction. Holding hands should also be obvious. These actions can arouse certain feelings attraction and should be avoided with the same sex. Again I have no idea what is to feel the way you do but I know that if you heed the counsel of church leaders and the prophet, they will not lead you astray.
LGBT BYU students explain why they chose to attend and stay
Godspeed brother. Sincerely, Isaac. I don't like the wording and intent of this Honor Code change because it separates actions and feelings of heterosexual people from homosexual people. Are heterosexual people not supposed to hug or hold hands or pat on the back or do any of those human intimacy things with people of the opposite sex? I think the letter of the law should be the same for everyone. I am female but have male friends and I am allowed to hug them.
Italians are very physically demonstrative and kiss each other - is that now prohibited? I hope that the Church didn't think they could hide a strict interpretation in the honor code because it isn't required by the general population of the church. I think the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and depended organizations are sometimes a little too strict in their policies. And new policies are usually stricter than the old ones.
Usually new policies comes to fix the problems that one person had or created. For example: The idea is "We will not let this problem happen again!!! In order to do this we just have to create a wall that is a little larger that will prevent the evil to enter".
Unfortunately for one bad apple, sometimes even just one bad instance of a behavior, we end up in a situation where everybody else has to pay with more restrictions. I have seen that the results of those new restrictions is sometimes a net negative, at least this is what it looks like to me. In general people that would be happy members end up becoming inactive and people that could hear the Gospel and progress to receiving temple ordinances do not. Sometimes the solution is to pray to accept those new policies or pray for those affected by those policies, other times you may talk with the right people so the policies can be adjusted.
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If I'm gay. This is a heavy post. I've worked at BYU as a curriculum designer. I'm a BYU graduate, twice. My license plate says BYU on it. My best friend attends BYU. But just today I learned about something that has given me cause for concern. Homosexual behavior includes not only sexual relations between members of the same sex, but all forms of physical intimacy that give expression to homosexual feelings.
Current definitions of physical intimacy encompass everything from prolonged eye contact to touch in every form, including hugs, handshakes, hand-holding, all the way up to sexual activity. This applies disparately based on whether I'm attracted to the same sex or not.
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In fact, there's a huge difference between the application to me attracted to men and the next guy who probably isn't. If I'm attracted to guys, then getting hugs, handshakes, and even high-fives from other men meets a deep physical need rooted in my attraction to men.
Most men need physical touch from other guys, but I thrive when guys touch me, and my physicality with men is a huge part of my life.