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Hi I'm Aaron

I am a graduate student in Mechanical Engineering and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

Having lived near mountains for most of my life, I have grown to love the outdoors. Not that I'm too adventurous, just the basics, like camping, hiking, amateur mountain biking. I have also recently gotten into cycling. I am married (2 and a half years) to another outdoors lover. In fact she could hike me right into the ground. We live in Logan, UT and are expecting our first child. Both of us are graduate students. I have a bachelors degree in Biological Engineering, and am just now completing my Master's degree in Mechanical Engineering. My field of study has been focused on fluid dynamics (motion of fluids), in particular computational fluid dynamics (computer simulation of the motion of fluids). I have a great passion for many types of learning. In particular history and science. I love to read, while now a days it is mostly non-fiction due to my passion for learning, I will still grab a good novel every once in a while.

Why I am a Mormon

Well, to be honest this part sort of came by default for me. I was born into a family of practicing Mormons, and all growing up church was just automatically a part of life. To be honest, at this stage in my life I am grateful that I had this experience. I had many individuals that I knew as a part of church who profoundly impacted my life. Some of the greatest role models I have known were people with whom I grew up attending church. I think that knowing people like that provided an important footing for me during my youth. Even with the example of people who I knew and respected I still found it very difficult to internalize the principles of Mormonism (or really any religion). I have always had a fairly strong questioning side to myself which borders on skepticism. Especially as a young adolescent this side of me manifested itself particularly as pertains to my families religion and even belief in God in general. This period of extended for at least a year in varying degrees of intensity. During this time I felt no particular need to argue with anyone over beliefs, or to stop attending. I was content enough to participate in church activities, after all I had a lot of friends there. Internally, though I was working out for myself where I really stood on the issues. I suppose in many ways at this age I was like an outsider investigating the church, though I can't remember really sharing these feelings with anyone. I thought through my questions, spent time studying the message of the gospel, in particular reading the scriptures all with the intent to decide for myself if I accepted it as true. Eventually I decided that the key to really knowing was the Book of Mormon. For months I read and prayed, my prayers containing questions about the Book of Mormon as well as the existence of God. In time I had a series of personal spiritual experiences that convinced me of both. In large it is these experiences and many since that explain why I am a Mormon.

How I live my faith

I believe the most important part of any faith is what is happening to us on the inside. Is who I am deep down fundamentally changing for the better, to become more like Christ? This is the most important questions, and the one I feel is the most difficult to answer. I addition, I find it the hardest to meaningfully improve upon. My faith consists of the continuous process of becoming aware of those aspects of my being that most separate me from Christ and seeking grace from God to rid myself of them and replace them with God-like qualities. In Mormonism or even Christianity in general this process is called repentance, and I feel like it is at the core of following Christ. In fact I don't think that Christ has much else to offer. His earthly mission was to give us the ability to repent, and His mission now consists of helping us to repent. Apart from this there are many more tangible aspects to my faith. As a part of religious community I have the opportunity to offer service in some of the organizations within my local congregation. For the past two and a half years I have had the phenomenal opportunity to work closely with the youth. This has consisted of preparing Sunday school lessons for the co-ed youth class and serving as an adviser for the young men in their religious as well as Scouting activities. This includes camps, activities, lessons, service projects, fund raising, and hopefully appropriate role modelling. To be honest the whole experience has been a joy, it is wonderful to be around the youth, to try to pass on to them the faith that is so dear to me. Being around them keeps me feeling young, and reminds me of important lessons that unfortunately fade in the business of life.

Do Mormons worship Joseph Smith?

Aaron
No, I can unequivocally state that members of the Church do not worship Joseph Smith. After many many primary lessons, and even more Sunday School lessons, not to mention family home evenings, sacrament talks, a two year mission as well as 10 hours of general conference every six months I have never once been introduced to the idea that Joseph Smith was anything more that a man called of God like any other prophet who's life is recorded in the Bible. I can however say that I do know that he was a prophet and that as a mortal and imperfect man he was able to be a tool in God's hands to restore the Church of Jesus Christ to the earth. I am grateful for his life and many sacrifices and contributions. Show more Show less