As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints we have this notion that in the next life we will have our impurities purged from us like shale from silver. And that this needs to happen in order for us to be like God.
It is this principle that gives us hope that children with down-syndrome will be restored whole and that the deaf will be able to hear. But how far does this extend? Some (my roommate included) believe that my sexuality will be purged in the next life much like an alcoholic’s chemical addiction. This principle only works if sexuality is a physical and temporal facet.
But what happens when an imperfection begins to (or completely does) define you? What happens to your personality that is grown out of your flaws? Deaf people have an entire language that is completely separate from English and a culture that has evolved from their lack of perfection. What happens to their personality after death? What happens to the skills and training in ASL?
When a personality is rooted in a flawed nature and the flawed nature is corrected in the eternities are the now useless skills and personality purged as well? Do we undergo – as Glinda calls it in Wicked – Personality Dialysis? And to what aim?
Will we have an identity crisis when we are purged? If so then I think that this is, as C.S. Lewis describes in The Great Divorce, the lizard on my shoulder. I will struggle and quite possibly fail to relinquish the imperfections that help define me. If they were clearly bad personality traits it would be easy; but instead I look at the personality traits I have gained from my homosexuality and I see great beneficial traits that may not be perfect enough for God but they seem to help others.
My kindness, my ability to honestly look at both sides of a story, my acceptance of flaws in others – traits that make the ideal husband – all originate from my flaws. Will they be useless in the next life? Will we have personalities in the next life or will we all be automatons simply doing the precise thing that God wants us to do. Is that a bad thing? After all as it states in the Smithsonian Natural History Museum diamonds are rare and blue diamonds are the rarest of all. Blue diamonds acquire their color from imperfections, namely Boron atoms in the Carbon crystalline structure. So what happens when those imperfections are removed? Does the rare and priceless Hope Diamond cease to be as radiant and brilliant? Or are we just assigning brilliance to the flaws with a blind eye to the truth? Really, truly I don’t know.
What are your thoughts on this? Should I prepare myself for a possible personality dialysis?