Of all the hymn parodies I have written so far, this one is my favorite. Part of the reason, I'm sure, is because the hymn (Be Still, My Soul) that this parody is based on is absolutely beautiful, and back when I was an active Mormon and was Ward Organist, I used to love to play it, sometimes playing it as prelude music. Of course, this hymn is not strictly Mormon - it is a Christian hymn originally written in German by Catharina von Schlegel (1752), and was then translated by Jane Borthwick (1899) who then set it to music written by the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius (also in 1899).
My parody of this hymn outlines my struggles with coming to terms with what I began discovering about Mormonism back in 2001 (prior to, during and after going on a Mormon Church History Tour) - that it is a fraud that was made up by Joseph Smith and perpetuated by various others since its inception through to the present day. As I have explained in other parts of this blog and in my book, initially I began reading about the history of the Mormon Church prior to going on a Mormon Church History Tour so I would know more when we visited the key places. Having been born and raised Mormon, I had never really studied the history of the Church, but had rather relied on what I was told to believe. So when I began to discover the truth behind what I had been told, and the actual sordid history of the Mormon Church, I was flabbergasted. At first, I kept thinking that I must be misunderstanding things, that I just needed to continue to have faith that it was true - to "just believe." But eventually, as I began to see even more clearly that it was actually a scam, I began to realize that having faith in what I was told to believe was all fine and good, but when all the evidence pointed toward it being actually false, then it wasn't faith anymore, but rather denial. That was the turning point for me.
And as difficult as this process was for me, in the end I felt incredibly peaceful, knowing that I had discovered the actual truth. All the years of questioning things and the burden of being told to "just believe" were erased, and I felt complete and utter serenity. What a gift.
WITHIN MY SOUL
Sung to the tune of Be Still My Soul, #124
Within my soul, the questioning was strong,
But still I tried so hard to just believe.
Accept by faith, and try to go along,
Deny the truth, the web of lies they weave.
Within my soul, I struggled with it all,
But now the truth is written on the wall.
Within my mind, it made no sense to me,
To reconcile it all became too hard.
The more I read, the clearer I could see
The stack of lies I knew I must discard.
Within my mind, I know that truth prevails,
And in the end that Mormonism fails.
Within my heart, I know without a doubt
That Joseph Smith created it from scratch.
It’s very clear, I want to scream and shout,
The lies are plain, none of the pieces match.
The truth is there for everyone to find,
All it requires is opening your mind.
Within my soul, I felt a great release
From all the years of being just a sheep.
I felt renewed and finally felt at peace,
No longer trapped, ensnared, deception deep.
Within my soul, tranquility abides,
Serenity, the gift that truth provides.
© Diane Tingen, 10/27/2011