- Having once been enlightened their minds are now darkened
- They are Judas like (traitors)
- They just don't believe the gospel
- Having once had a testimony they never deny it. A testimony cannot be reduced to an illusion.
- They're using intellectual reservations to cover behavioral lapses
- One loses his testimony only by listening to the evil one.
- They leave because they have sinned.
- They left by the instigation of Satan and are now in his service.
It sort of explains why my father came up to me and my young nephew this summer and said, "Don't believe a word he says, you can trust Uncle Bull." He laughed. My nephew looked puzzled. Perhaps he thought it was just a teasing joke. But who says that? Would he have said that if not for my apostasy?
I'll credit the author of the post with a couple of isolated instances where he concedes that some apostates can leave the church alone and that there may be reasons why they can't (family, etc.) and that they might not all leave because of sin. But the overall tone of the article is pretty consistent with the way the Mormon church, like many other religions, portrays apostates.
By the way. I am a sinner. I won't burden you with a confession here, but trust me that I'm guilty of plenty of problems. But it has nothing to do with my apostasy. My disbelief has nothing to do with my personal faults. In fact I continue to try to improve today just like I did when I believed.
Maybe the Mormons are right. Perhaps my mind has been darkened by Satan. Maybe I've lost the light of the Spirit (whatever that is, presumably anything that makes you agree with Mormonism). But it sure doesn't seem like that to me. I simply became aware of additional facts that I never learned while a member that caused me to re-evaluate the facts and come to a different conclusion. I changed my mind.
By the way, it wasn't easy to make that change. Changing beliefs in such a dramatic way isn't easy and wasn't done casually. And perhaps that's why the attitudes toward apostates irritates me so much. It seems like they want to demonize people like me rather than concede that perhaps I had valid reasons and left for good reasons.