Our lives have been one big spiritual journey! We’ve grown more through travel, entrepreneurship, and raising a family, than anything else we’ve ever done. Our beliefs about who we are, about the nature of reality, and about the purpose of life have shifted dramatically since we began traveling; and they continue to evolve as we stay open to new experiences and ideas.

We know better what makes us happy, helps us feel fulfilled, and fosters a sense of meaning, connection, and contribution in our lives. Through difficult experiences, we’ve strengthened our abilities to rise above them. And we’re learning to appreciate every moment for the miraculous gift that it is.

A Change of Faith

We were raised as devout Mormons in Salt Lake City, a unique and tight-knit culture with firm and strict boundary lines defining what’s good and bad. We grew up believing with all our hearts that the LDS church was the only true church on the earth, just as we were taught, and that every spiritual feeling we had confirmed this truth. We “knew” beyond doubt where we came from, why we were on the earth, and what would happen after we died.

A short six months into our travels, while serving in a church leadership position and pursuing spiritual growth with even more vigor, we began to realize that our measuring stick for absolute truth could be easily misinterpreted. We began a thorough reassessment of our beliefs, and soon came to the difficult conclusion that it no longer made sense to us. This led to us eventually abandoning the church of our childhood, which had both tremendously positive and negative consequences. You can read the details of this journey, how and why we made this choice, and where it’s led us, in Brandon’s popular document:

Why I Left the Mormon Church

LDS Temple

Why I Left the Mormon Church

Read the story

Read my journey from devout LDS church leader to leaving the religion of my family and childhood.

So, what do we believe now?

We are open to the mystery of life. We have some beliefs, but we try to hold no belief so firmly that we close our mind to alternatives, or cause another harm in the name of a belief. We retain a certain humility in acknowledging that we could be wrong about anything, and often challenge our beliefs to discover more. In acknowledging that we don’t know what’s true, we also recognize the idea that each person chooses their own truth, in ways that feel good and right to them, and that no method of discovering truth is going to satisfy everyone.

With that said, we do believe that there is a creative, evolutionary force in the universe. It is what causes molecules to bind, plants to grow, and life to evolve. But beyond that, we have few beliefs about “God”. You can read these and others of our beliefs about death, and the meaning of life here:

Connect To Your Intuition

Are you ready to tune in to your

own inner wisdom?

Enter your email address to get your free guide

10 Tips for Connecting To Your Intuition​

Hidden Content


Check out some of our other posts about spirituality below, to see where we’ve been not just physically, but in our spiritual journeyings.


Here are some of our favorite books about spirituality:

7 Books for Spiritual Awakening

Also be sure to check out these book lists:

11 Thought-Provoking Books I read in 2010

11 Influential Books I Read in 2009

Spirituality Blog Posts

How Fulfilling Are Your Relationships?

How connected do you feel to your partner or your kids? To extended family and friends? To a community? And how fulfilling are those connections for all involved? In our modern culture, we’re often taught the value of becoming self-reliant and independent. Sometimes as we “succeed” in this, it leads to a sense of isolation. Or we may shut ourselves off from deeper emotions in order to…

Read More

Lessons Learned

Each Sunday, I write an email to everyone who has signed up for my Weekly NOW email series. Each week is completely different…I’ve written about our transition to setting down some roots in San Miguel De Allende and purchasing a house there, I’ve written about struggles and triumphs in my business, about what worldschooling looks like for our family, and about personal matters that I…

Read More

Love for All

Much of the world received a bit of shock this week with the election results, and emotions have been high for many. I was surprised by the news myself, not quite sure how to process it or what it would mean for me and for other people. I began to practice what I often do when troubling thoughts and emotions arise: I tried to observe…

Read More

Dreaming Awake

I have a special poem to share with you all today. First, here’s some background… While attending the Life Without Instructions Conference on Staten Island this past September, I attended a writing workshop facilitated by Miro Siegel. He briefly explained the different stages of The Hero’s Journey, outlined by Joseph Campbell. Using that pattern as a guide, he set us to the task of writing. I decided to…

Read More

Meditation Demystified

Meditation is a simple mental focus exercise that can have powerful effects in your daily life. Personally, it’s increased my awareness of the thoughts and emotions I experience and improved my ability to choose how I respond to situations in life, rather than react unconsciously. When I’ve had a consistent practice of meditation, it’s also reduced stress and anxiety, increased my compassion for others, and…

Read More

Bonding in Breckenridge

We thought we’d be extra adventurous this year, and trade our typical tropical climate for a brave escapade into an extremely harsh and frozen one. Our girls have been craving snow almost ever since we left it six years ago. To appease them, we decided to venture a ski vacation with Brandon’s Mom and sister Ashley’s family, over Christmas and the New Year. Little did we…

Read More

To all the Mormons – I’m Sorry

It’s hard to know what to say when starting an apology. But I’m feeling a kind of tugging sorrow in my heart for the pain I’ve caused my LDS family and friends, and likely many others I’ve never met. If you feel you’ve been affected negatively by something I’ve written, said, or done over the years, then please accept my sincere apology. This post is…

Read More

Living Your Life Purpose

“It’s messing people up, this social pressure to ‘find your passion’ and ‘know what it is you want to do’. It’s perfectly fine to just live your moments fully, and marvel as many small and large passions, many small and large purposes enter and leave your life. For many people there is no realization, no bliss to follow, no discovery of your life’s purpose. This…

Read More

My Journey with Ayahuasca

Over my birthday this year, while the family was in Ronda, Spain, I took a train to Madrid for a 3-day retreat where an Amazonian plant mixture called ayahuasca was used to facilitate greater self-awareness. I first heard of ayahuasca in 2012, shortly after arriving in Bali for the first time, and have been intrigued by the idea ever since. Over the years, I’ve met dozens of people…

Read More

My Solo Trip and Silent Retreat

I don’t know about you, but there are a lot of thoughts swimming around in my head, and sometimes I get really tired of the inner noise. It’s easy for me to get caught up in preparing for the future, reliving the past, or the constant chatter of labeling and critiquing everything in my present experience. Sometimes, I wish the voice in my head would just shut up…

Read More

Making Mormonism More Good

There is a lot of good in Mormonism. There are teachings of love and compassion, of service and productivity, of humility and integrity. Within its community, there is a sense of belonging and safety. And I see much sincerity in its people. However, I’m concerned that too often, the ability for members to live by these good principles is handicapped by other teachings in the church that…

Read More

Making Work Meaningful

When I created Music Teacher’s Helper ten years ago, it was to solve a need that I had in my own life — to better organize my student lesson schedules and payments. I decided to turn it into a “business” for two reasons. One, because other teachers expressed interest in it. And two, to provide for my family without being dependent on an employer. I’ve learned a lot since…

Read More

Welcoming Difficult Questions

If you’re connected at all with Mormonism, you may have heard about the recent situation in which LDS church leaders have sent letters warning of excommunication to about a dozen members who are publicly asking difficult questions about church history, policy, and doctrine. The two most well-known individuals include Kate Kelly, founder of the Ordain Women movement, which raises questions about gender inequality in the…

Read More

The Why of Happiness

Despite having stated that I no longer offer business consulting, I occasionally get emails asking me if I can make an exception. Sometimes I’ll write back asking what they hope to get out of consulting, and it usually turns out they want advice on what they should do, or instructions for how they should do it. One of the reasons I stopped offering consulting is that…

Read More

What Do I Know?

Jennifer and I sometimes get asked what we believe about life’s “big questions”, like our views on death, God, and the purpose of life. Are there “core truths” we believe in, that provide us comfort or guidance on these issues? Or do we reject all belief and wander through life aimlessly? These questions usually come from people who not only believe their own answers to…

Read More

7 Books for Spiritual Awakening

Throughout history, thousands of books have been written to inspire spiritual awakening, or enlightenment. While experiencing this state is completely different from studying it, I enjoy learning from others’ perspectives and experiences with it, as it tends to fuel my own growth. Here are some books that have been helpful for me in expanding my awareness of things as they are, and of who I…

Read More

Why I Can’t Leave the Church Alone

It’s been almost four years since my family and I decided to leave the LDS (Mormon) church, and almost three years since I published my document about Why I Left the Mormon Church. This letter has since been read by tens of thousands of people, and still prompts almost weekly emails from readers, mostly people thanking me for the comfort and courage it provided them on…

Read More

Living Beyond Labels

Remember when you were a child, and life was full of wonder and excitement? When every experience was new and you were fully present in each moment, feeling more than thinking, and enjoying your connection to everything you interacted with? What if you could jump back into that state of aliveness and appreciation, and experience life again, for the first time? I’m writing this post…

Read More

The Value of an Italian Moment

For the next 5 weeks, we will be traveling through Italy, from Rome, Naples, and Amalfi, to Tuscany, Como, and Venice. This is the first time any of us have been to Italy, and so far we’re loving it! Most people we talk to about Italy have only positive things to say. They mention the impressive architecture, serene landscapes, tasty food, and lively people. Except…

Read More

Healing Sexual Shame

It’s no secret that humans are sexual beings. Yet, many of us have been taught from a young age to suppress this part of our nature, to hide it, or to see it as wrong or evil. The negative effects of this conditioning can be far reaching, and can last a lifetime. Not everyone who grows up in a sexually oppressive religion or culture ends…

Read More

Breaking the Barriers of Belief

Last week, I had a few interactions that reminded me how much our attachment to our beliefs can keep us from truth, growth, and freedom. I was surprised at how often we choose comfort over truth, even when it means restriction and repression. And how terrifying it can be to seek truth at all costs. The path to truth isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it’s frightening,…

Read More

Codependent in Hong Kong

It’s been another intense month for me, digging through the recesses of my soul, questioning what I want in life and relationships, and breaking through more barriers that have been holding me back from being myself. I also took a solo business trip to Hong Kong for a few days, and have been working more on building my business structure and systems to handle new…

Read More

The Power of Breath

One of the most powerful tools I’ve discovered for becoming more present and aware of my inner world is “breathing”. Everyone breathes, but most people remain consistently unaware of their breath, and of the impact that conscious breathing can have upon emotions, health, and well-being. I think it feels great to yawn, sigh, laugh, and take deep breaths. But I’m finding I can gain more…

Read More

Do Emotions Affect the Body?

Doctors have been telling us for decades that stress causes disease. But despite my relatively stress-free life, for the past few years, I’ve suffered from irritable bowel syndrome. I honestly don’t know how long I’ve had this problem, but it became bad enough to notice after we came back from our South America trip in the Fall of 2011. Once I discovered that having diarrhea…

Read More

My Confessions and Emotions

As I mentioned in my last post, I’ve been quieter lately in the online world. The reason, I found, is that I was afraid to be genuine. I’ve been doing a lot of inner exploration lately, and am discovering things about myself that are painful to admit, even to myself. It’s time to come clean, in the name of deeper, richer connections, a fuller self-expression,…

Read More

That Tingling Feeling

My body has never tingled so much since we moved to Bali! I’m not talking about my leg “falling asleep.” These are very pleasant feelings, sometimes subtle and soft, and other times overwhelming, causing my whole body to feel like it’s filled with lightning. Sometimes they’re accompanied by strong emotion and a feeling of relief and release. These sensations can be relaxing or energizing, peaceful…

Read More

The Reality of Spirituality

The town of Ubud in Bali, Indonesia is a hub for yogis, spiritual healers, health conscious individuals, and followers of New Age philosophies. Everywhere you look are ads for meditation courses, yoga classes, or detox retreats. Out of curiosity, and for the chance to get out on my own for a while, make some friends, and learn something new, I attended a 5-day Craniosacral workshop…

Read More

Reactions to Radical Decisions

Since I announced recently that I left the Mormon church, I’ve received hundreds of responses from people expressing their opinions, their love and support, and their own journeys with me. The post has been viewed over 2,500 times (most of that within the first 3 days), and there’s a thread about it on my Facebook timeline over 100 comments long. Many people have told me they’ve…

Read More

Why I Left the Mormon Church

There have been some rumors floating around that we have left the Mormon church (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). Perhaps you’ve seen the pictures of Jen in sleeveless dresses, or you’ve noticed from my tweets the absence of any mention of church for almost a year, and you’re wondering what’s going on. Some people have approached us about it privately and others…

Read More

11 Thought-Provoking Books I Read in 2010

Last year, I wrote a post about 11 Influential Books I Read in 2009. I’d like to do the same for 2010, but this time, I’m sharing some of the most thought-provoking books I’ve read recently. This has been a big year of change for me, and many of these books explore debunking commonly held beliefs and opening your mind to new ways of thinking….

Read More