I think everyone's spiritual experience is different, and to say I'm Mormon isn't really saying much at all considering the wide spectrum of thought, observance, and spirituality that can be associated with it. So this entry is to clarify what I believe, and why, and the reasons those beliefs combined with my sexuality are problematic.
I believe, and I always have, that there's more to life than we see. I'm not talking about spirituality in the amorphous, everybody has their own, kind of way. I'm talking about the factual state of the universe that we just plain don't get because of our mental and physical limitations. I've come to believe that the purpose of life is one of those things--something of substance, something real--that we don't fully understand. God tells us bits and pieces that give us guidance about how to get ourselves to the point where we can learn and know more, but the fact that they are so sketchy makes it hard to "buy in" all the time.
Some of those bits and pieces that I happen to believe are that there was life before and will be life after mortality. The conditions of that life are described in terms that I believe are a mix of fact and metaphor so that we can understand them--we were with a family, we will continue to be in families, and relationships will endure. The emphasis on connections with other people make it clear that we need to have as much love for others as possible. Further, happiness is desirable--but only a certain brand of happiness, the kind that doesn't distract from a larger, as yet incomprehensible, destiny.
Part of me is happy when my body tells me I'm happy. Putting a physiologic spin on it, the pleasure centers of the brain make you happy when you obey your body. Drink when you're thirsty, succeed in a high-pressure situation, have sex. But the body's feedback is limited and I have to rely on higher brain functions to discern whether what makes me feel good is really helpful. Quenching thirst is important when you're thirsty, unless it's quenched with anti-freeze. Endorphin release in a high-stress situation is good, unless it's from a drug addiction that will ultimately kill you. And sex is good when it draws you closer to a person in love and/or results in the responsible creation of another human life. But sex can be selfish and destructive too.
I see several roads to happiness based on my life right now, but none that I find satisfactory. To break it down as simply as possible, the two opposing things that make me happy are my family (my wife, son, and extended family) and gay sex and/or affection. I see no obvious way to reconcile the two and have them both (which I so much want!), so I have to decide what to do. Pursue the greater happiness--which will go irrevocably in one direction or the other--or turn to something as uncertain as my faith and trust that I'll be best off with a particular course of action regardless of the consequences to my happiness.
This post is already way too long, so I guess I'll have to make it a serial story... more later!