Yesterday at Church, the topic was supposedly the Law of Chastity. Both speakers discussed various aspects of this law. I was somewhat taken back (but not really, as I’ve grown up Mormon) by one particular example of following the Law of Chastity.
This particular speaker shared a story of how her visiting teaching companion came over when she (the speaker) was not home. Naturally, the speaker’s husband answered the door and invited in his wife’s visiting teaching companion. But she (the visitor) boldly declared that she would not enter the house so that there would be no question as to what she had done with her visiting teaching companion’s husband.
Interestingly enough, the speaker and her husband reflected on how “strong” this woman is and what a great example too!
Both talks were full of references to the notorious “appearance of evil” doctrine / pseudo-doctrine. I suppose I wonder to what extent our Church (or members within the Church) feel(s) the need to make sure plenty of appearances of evil exist, which we can have good reason to avoid.
But really, the issue I have with the whole idea is that it automatically creates an uncomfortable / awkward situation in which either party is probably subconsciously wondering, “Is he/she attracted to me in someway? How flattering (or, how creepy!). Oh, but maybe it’s just that he/she is trying to be a good Mormon and really isn’t attracted to me. Gosh, it’s so hard to tell. I don’t know that I would even necessarily think to be attracted to that person (or, creeped out by that person), but now that I remember that one talk in sacrament meeting, I better create some evil in mind so that this situation can constitute an example of avoiding that evil, which might not have even existed had I not heard that talk yesterday.”
Obviously if thoughts really worked that way, then the next thought would be, “This whole thing is just plain silly.” I imagine those who handle these situations in different ways often get pigeonholed fairly quickly. The visiting teacher at the door must be attracted to every man whose wife isn’t in sight and is proud to indirectly proclaim such a message whereas I must be in denial and am secretly attracted to every woman whose husband isn’t in sight and just won’t admit it.
So I wonder if there is a problem here or if there isn’t. Like most things within the Church, there probably is a problem (for some), which I suppose should be dealt with in the same awkward fashion by all so as to disguise those who really have the problem? I’m speculating here; I don’t know.