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EX-MORMON OPINION - SECTION 21
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| I noticed in a couple of talks (when I was passing by in the doorway), that the speakers listed "rescuing people" in their list of virtues. Such as, "The elder missionary couple chose to spend their time helping those in need, rescuing people, fulfilling callings, etc.
Japanese guy, "...he rescued many people. I was one of those he rescued. I was able to rescue my whole family."
At first I thought these speakers were talking about tsunami victims, disaster victims, etc. Not! They were saying "rescued" instead of "converted," or "brought the into the church" or "baptized into the gospel." Rescue implies a victim and an adversary. We know that the Mormons are in their own little battle with the rest of the world, so they need to rescue people--from what? From other good families? From freedom and happiness? From life?
These converted victims pay dearly in time and money for their supposed "rescue."
How dare they! "RESCUED" is OUR ex-Mormon word--when we stopped being victims to their cult. I damned-well RESCUED my children from a cult, and I'm proud of it! The Mormons are not going to take that away from me!!!!
Though, maybe we can throw the word "rescue" back into their face: "I was only trying to rescue your child." I was trying to rescue the fast offering collectors, when I told them they were collecting money for a CULT.
| The most flimsy evidence there is would be that an "expert" said it when experts regularly take opposing points of view on most topics.
Many posters demand "evidence" when someone here voices an opinion or shares an experience. "Evidence" often means quoting some pro or pundit, or providing a link or written reference of some kind. None of that means much in and of itself. What matters is a clear and sensible rationale and credible observable evidence.
Remember that finding something in print doesn't make it real or true.
Sometimes we have to trust experts, but if the stakes are high, it's usually a good idea to compare more than one opinion. We can check on a professional's experience, their training, and their ethical track records.
We were all trained to believe in priesthood leaders and by extension in other authority figures. Corruption and/or ineptitude is very possible at every level of society, top to bottom.
The other day at the doctor's office I read an article by someone who writes term papers, masters and PHD theses for lazy and incompetent students. I know rich parents who don't mind buying their kids' way through college and helping kids aquire unearned credentials.
There are others who claim to be experts who live in ivory towerland and don't have good common sense or real life experience to draw accurate conclusions.
My brother has made it his hobby to check into scam organizations which churn out fradulent diplomas and degrees. Sad to say, there are people in prestigious positions who are totally unqualified.
My DH once had to fire an incompetent senior accountant because she knew next to nothing about accounting principles and practices. Turns out her degree was in horticulture and she had lied her way into the job before DH became her boss. This is only one example. He has others just as egregious.
I once worked with a "teacher" who knew nothing about education and was eventually fired for faking his credentials and qualifications.
My advice is to trust your own judgments and perceptions over supposed experts. Dig a little before you accept expert advice and especially before you hire employees, vote, or join a church.
| The race to the alter is nothing more than a race to sex. This has created a situation where both spouses are objectified sexually early in the marriage. Those who take more time before marriage often move beyond the sexually charged phase before exchanging vows. This may allow them to see the relationship more clearly thus increasing the chance of identifying and weighing incompatibilities.
Though not universal, there are many marriages where the TBM wife does not have full control of her person. It is common for TBM women to be subjugated and assume a role more analogous to a child rather than an adult. This may also lead to controlling relationships where the wife is treated in some regards as the property of the husband. When the husband does the talking for the wife, feels a need to "shield" the wife from the outside world, and be the sole provider then a lop-sided disempowering relationship is in effect.
The flip side of this is that the husband can assume the role of bank and ATM machine. The heavy time demands of church callings and career can lead to severely reduced time with spouses thus increasing the percentage of time with the spouse that become some form of business transaction. Time that would be spent chatting about the day, interests, etc becomes less prevalent as the dwindling time together must be used for family business such as activity scheduling, shuttling kids, discussing the budget, etc.
This type of arrangement can drain the life out of a marriage very quickly. Because of early marriage, pressures to produce and raise kids while still in school, and church demands, many Mormon marriages never really have a chance to build that strong, authentic person-to-person bond in the first place. The youth of the partners means that they often do not know who they themselves are. The need to fit into the TBM mold also means that they often do not learn who they really are, ever.
The cycle continues when those who were raised with suffocating controls in essence are transferred from church and/or father property to husband property. The husband has more autonomy but is generally church property throughout his life.
Comparing the lives of the nevermo women at work to the TBM women in my ward and stake presents the starkest contrast. It is a great disservice to these women that they are objectified, infantilized, and stunted in their development. While writing that sentence, it struck me how painfully obvious this should be. To someone in a less misogynistic culture the injustice of it all is evident. Within Mormonism, this disparity and inequity are vigorously defended as somehow being the best for all involved.
| There's an article in Deseret News this morning that's titled what this thread is titled. In essence, it's an essay that anti-Mormonism is bigotry. I don't agree. I think being anti-Mormon is but not necessarily anti-Mormonism... but I digress.
In the article the author quotes a Slate writer regarding anti-Mormonism and prejudice. One of the quotes is this:
"the prejudices you need to work on aren't the ones you recognize in your grandparents' generation. They're the ones you don't recognize in your own generation, and in yourself."
Amen to that. The Mormon Church has a long history of being unable to recognize the prejudices of it's own age. At one time it was their prejudice against blacks, and against women rights (which still exists to some extent today), and it's prejudice against Native Americans. Well that's all been put behind them, the Church is quick to say. However, can anyone say Prop 8? The fact that the DN puts such an article in their newspaper is clearly the pot calling the kettle black. Here's another quote from the article regarding prejudice:
"You'll know it when you see it, but you won't see it until you know that's what it is."
Mormon culture still doesn't seem to know what prejudice is.
| It's not very often that the First Presidency has something important enough to write to all the members of the Church.
So it was a fairly exciting moment when on Sunday the Branch President announced that he had such a letter to read out. The membership was all ears. Our Prophet (and therefore God) was speaking directly to us. Breath was bated.
Tithing. Pay your tithing. Go to tithing settlement.
Mention made of charitable works, humanitarian effort etc but no mention of City Creek nor other land acquisition nor BYU budgets etc.
Tithing. Pay your tithing. Go to tithing settlement.
That is what Mormon God feels is the most important thing for His Propeht to tell you this week.
Tithing. Pay your tithing. Go to tithing settlement.
| The other day I had an interesting conversation with my mum and wife. "Interesting" to me, at least, in how it revealed the cognitive processing of a TBM when confronted with a fact that goes counter to their programming.
I can't remember how we even got onto the topic, but I mentioned how there had been gay general authorities in the past. I was refering of course to Joseph Fielding Smith, the former church Patriarch.
(Now, I forget sometimes that my perspective on matters LDS is quite different to my wifes and parents'. I genuinely did not say anything that I believed to be controversial. I wasn't aware of whether or not they knew about this aspect of relatively modern church history, but I certainly didn't expect any kind of reaction.
For those interesting in reading about the "outing" of Joseph Fielding Smith, this is a concise history: http://www.affirmation.org/history/jo... )
Anyway, they were both immediately on the offensive against me, like I had just made a slanderous and false accusation against one of their friends. I might as well have accused Tommy Monson of being a pedofile as far as they were concerned. Whatever we were talking about before was irrelevent now - for the next half hour I had to justify my "accusation" against a double-team of TBM anti-logic and anti-reason, where nobody can win because the "testimony" trumps everything.
Them: "Who said that? Where did you read it?"
Freeman: "I can't recall exactly where I read it." [Truthfully. I wasn't preparing for a battle when I made the passing comment.]
Them: "Was it on the internet? Anybody can make something up an put it on the internet."
Freeman: "I read it online, yes, but the medium isn't important. It wasn't just "made up", it was documented and researched by a qualified historian."
[Freeman is frantically Googling]
Freeman: [explains that it was compiled by D. Michael Quinn who had access to many primary sources including the private diaries of general authorities]
Them: "Was he excommunicated?"
Freeman: "Who? Joseph Fielding Smith or D. Michael Quinn?"
Freeman: "I believe D. Michael Quinn was, but not specifically for making that claim. It isn't really relevent to the truth of the claim is it?"
Them: "Ah, well that explains everything. The historian obviously had an axe to grind, and the general authority can't have been gay [and had sexual relationships] because otherwise he would have been excommunicated. I know how these things work. He would have been excommucated within days of finding out."
Freeman: "Are you honestly saying that without any evidence to the contrary, you are disbelieving that he was gay on the grounds that he wasn't - to your knowledge - excommunicated?"
Them: "Well, that, and the fact I just don't believe it."
Them: "My feelings tell me that it isn't true. And that is the only way we can be sure of anything unless we investigate it for ourself by seeing the primary sources directly."
Freeman: "So nevermind that a highly regarded professional historian has seen the sources and made obvious conclusions, you would refuse to believe a word he says unless you saw and read the diaries yourself?"
[I wonder whether they apply the same burdon of proof requirements to everything else they accept as fact... the Book of Mormon *cough cough* for instance?]
Them: "Anybody could have made a claim and written it in a diary or journal, so even that wouldn't prove it was true. Besides, I just can't believe that he wouldn't have been excommunicated, or that the church would be trying to cover it up. If you believe that the church would cover this up this must test your faith. Your faith isn't being challenged by this is it?"
[Taken back a bit, I ponder whether she is trying to challenge me to admit that my faith IS tested, or whether she is so confident that it isn't being tested, that she is making me refer to my personal testimony for "proof" that the church is true and D. Michael Quinn must be wrong...]
Freeman: "I don't understand why you are connecting a probably gay general authority to the truth of the church. It is possible for the church to be true AND Joseph Fielding Smith to have been gay!"
Them: [trying a different approach] "Freeman, there are plenty of people out there with axes to grind against the church, who write and produce anti-Mormon material and put it on the internet. We need to be able to discern the truth by staying close to the spirit. You need to be really careful when you are reading things on the internet. Sometimes people write things that are obviously not true, like about the temple endowment for example..."
Freeman: [this sounds interesting] "What do they say about the temple endowment?"
Them: "It doesn't matter. I'm not saying. But it is obviously not true. But sometimes you can read things on the internet that might sound plausible, but it is really just anti-Mormon literature. You need to rely on your testimony because the church is true and if you read something that doesn't sit quite right with you then trust your testimony."
Freeman: "Is that your argument against the claim I made? That your have a testimony of whether or not he was gay?"
Them: "No. I don't believe he was gay because I know the church is true and the spirit tells me that it isn't true."
[Conversation tails off. You just can't argue with that! You can't beat a feeling.]
| || Why Doesn't The Morg/LD$ Church Stick To Teaching Healthy Ways Of Behaving Instead Of The "Brainwashing"? Because It's A Cult. |
Thursday, Nov 17, 2011, at 07:35 AM
Original Author(s): The 1st Freeatlast
Topic: EX-MORMON OPINION - SECTION 21 -Link To MC Article-
| ↑ |
| Why doesn't the Morg/LD$ Church stick to teaching healthy ways of behaving instead of the 'brainwashing'? Because it's a cult.
The Mormon Church isn't interested - at all - in playing a psychologically healthy/nurturing/supportive role in your daughter's life - or anyone else's for that matter. Never forget: the FOUNDATION of Mormonism is deceit.
7-8 generations of Mormon 'prophets' have seen to it that the indoctrination program of the Morg involves not informing Latter-day Saints (of all ages) about the TRUTH (facts) relative to Joseph Smith (consummate liar, manipulator and sexual predator), church history, the BoM, etc.
What the LDS Church have always been addicted to is unquestioning obedience in members. The ENTIRE church system is structured to that end, starting with the systematic indoctrination of small children (age 3 on). "Pray, pay and obey" is what cultic Mormonism is ALL about.
To what end? To expand the 'one, true' religious corporation of JC and the church's wealth and power and influence. The cultic, ego-driven LDS/Morg agenda was doing pretty well until the Internet came along.
You're responsible for your daughter's well-being, including her psychological welfare. If you allow her to be systematically indoctrinated in cultic Mo-ism, she could potentially grow up to be psychologically/emotionally chained to the wounding and manipulative LDS Church and religion. In the very least, she'll be 'programmed' to betray her mind - i.e., to unconsciously undermine her rational/critical thinking, which naturally buds and grows in children as they begin to question things like the existence of Santa Claus - when she's confronted by facts that do not support so-called 'true' Morg teachings.
The typical result of the cultic LDS 'programming' process is a lack of confidence in one's mind and judgments (and negative consequences therefrom) and an unconscious surrendering of one's individual will to that of the LDS 'group mind/will'. In short, a 'Mo-bot' who's afraid to assert her/his right to ALWAYS think for herself/himself and scrutinize other people's beliefs.
Over the years, layers of cultic Mormon 'programming' accumulate psychologically on top of the true self of an individual. The result has been - and continues to be - people in conflict (at war) with themselves. To 'just have faith' requires shoving all the 'faith'-disrupting facts and observed and experienced reality into a mental closet and slamming the door shut (trying to, at least). But over the years there is so much stuff in the closet, that it periodically forces its way out.
Don't subject your daughter to this kind of inner distrust, conflict, poor self-esteem, lack of mental confidence, fear of asserting one's wishes and speaking one's truth, etc., etc.
I found out this week on PostMormon.org that there was a 36-year-old woman who'd been raised in cultic Mormonism from birth. She was single (never good in the marriage-and-family-obsessed LDS Church) and only recently discovered that Mo-ism was (is) a sham and that the Morg had deceived her for decades. She killed herself. Many sensitive people deeply wounded by cultic Mormonism have also taken their lives.
You need to act to protect your daughter. She won't understand at this point in her life, but when she's older, you can explain why you intervened.
Here's info. about how cultic Mo-ism affects people psychologically and what they can do to liberate themselves: http://members.shaw.ca/blair_watson/
| I was just thinking about all the pretty, elegant words spoken at LDS conferences and from the podiums of meeting houses teaching members how virtuous it is to submit the abuses of the Corporation know as the “the Mormon Church”.
LDS leaders teach members that it is acceptable for Church representatives it invade their personal boundaries by expecting inappropriate personal questions to be asked and worse answered.
How disfellowship of the apostate takes away the voice of the person who sees through the veneer and realizes the real purpose of the Church organization and is not allowed to speak of it. Silencing the victim, how convenient.
How members are taught how virtuous it is to put aside their responsibility for taking care of and protecting personal resources of time, money, talent and personal boundaries and allow all their resources to be exploited by the abusive organization.
I’m sure the list goes on……
| I was mindlessly surfing the internet today, cup of coffee in hand, when I came across an article in the Los Angeles times. It was written back in July, so forgive me if this has been posted already. Anyways, in the article, the concept of our need for religion as an intrinsic trait of humanity is discussed. Many people believe that God created man; I personally hold the opinion that it is the other way around. At the end of the first page of the article, the author cites a study performed by Yale psychologist, Paul Bloom. In that study, Bloom and his colleagues found that infants and young children have an innate sense of morality. The author also cites Michael Tomasello, who states that we are born with a limited sense of morality and altruism, but that we are later educated to become self-interested.
One of the things that stands out about Mormonism and religion in general is that they claim that we cannot be moral without some form of higher power. That morality wasn't invented by man, but by some God or Gods. It's truly frightening how easy it is to sell people what they already had at one point in their life. What Mormonism does to people, strip them of their self worth and project it on the organization itself, is horrendous.
There are so many asinine rules within Mormonism that distract many people from truly being the best people they can be. I realize that in many instances morality is subjective, but the simple adage “don't be a dick,” shouldn't be pushed aside for silly things such as not masturbating or the prohibition of certain beverages. In my short time on this planet, I've found that this simple concept, the golden rule, is most often pushed aside for other asinine moral values.
Mormonism tells us we're worthless sinners, that without a higher power we cannot live peaceful, happy lives. It breaks us down, strips us of our self worth and replaces it with rules created by a conniving conman and a soulless corporation. Once they've accomplished that, they tell us that we are better than everyone else, but that we're worthless if we do not follow their 613 guidelines to absolute perfection. We must deny our own bodily functions to remain righteous. We must pay 10% of our gross income to a cold and detached bureaucracy. We must devote our lives to an institution which gives very little in return for our efforts. Our reward for doing these things is meager, but is what so many base their entire lives on. Our reward is self worth, supplied by an institution hiding behind an imaginary figure. It's an incredibly parasitic relationship which strangles some of its victims to death.
According to the studies I referenced above, we have some sense of morality at birth, and those who desire to manipulate and fleece others rob us of our self concept by telling us that we would be evil without them, and they replace our self concept with one of their own design. Mormonism made me deny myself, it told me I was terrible when I was not, and realizing this has brought color to my life.
Here's the LA Times article for anyone who is interested:
| The Mormon apologetic prophet, GBH, was willing to toss out the teachings that God was once like mankind now is (the significant doctrinal teaching of JSJr at his last GC, April 1844) on Larry King Live.
NAMIRS and Sorenson are willing to toss out the long held position of the LDS Church that the Book of Mormon Hill Cumorah is situate in upstate New York, on the flimsiest of excuses--an unsigned fax from FP office staffer Carla Ogden, quoting a compendium put together at BYU (Encyclopedia of Mormonism).
Gone are the days that the American Indians are the descendants of the Book of Mormon Lamanites. No more current Lamanite Nation.
Gone are the claims that the BoAbr was linguistically translated from the papyrus and the KEP are the proof of it (now that it is obvious that the KEP proves it was not a linguistic translation).
Gone is the facade that diverted attention from the real facts that JSJr was looking at a little stone, face down into the crown of a hat in 'translating' the Book of Mormon. (Thanks, Trey Parker!)
Etc, etc, etc.
Now, Mormon apopologists (of any level), please do tell us what your 'closer looks' will next debunk that is currently being taught in the correlated manuals coming out of the COB or in the official introductions, etc. Maybe you could fathom for us different horizons, namely, what you expect to debunk in the next 10 years, in the next 20 years, and in the next 30 years, respectively.
If you are offended by the question or not willing to share with us your future plans, perhaps you could give us a listing of those aspects of Mormon teachings you claim presently will never be debunked, those 'eternal truths'. (You might want to vet each one out as not being falsifiable per any forensic techniques that mankind has currently at its disposal and those potential ones that science is yet working on developing, just to try to make your list impervious to the ravages of human innovation in the future.)
We're waiting. Curious minds want to know.
| There's no need to ban him from your family unless you as the parent personally hate him.
In that case, if you can't play along and enjoy the fun with your child, then tell your child, "Many people like to pretend about Santa. That isn't what we do in this family."
But if you loved Santa as a kid and still have a sense of yourthful wonder, Santa can add fun and a sense of happy imagination to this season and probably to your child's love of family traditions.
The problem some parents have is that they go at the myth like they force feed cultism. Instead of letting the child's imagination lead them, they force the issue. They also use Santa like a club. "You better be good or Santa will hate you and you'll be the only kid on the street who get's coal in their stocking."
Shame has no healthy part in enjoying myths. Neither does extremism. I don't suggest you buy a costume for Dad or climb on the roof and act out reindeer hoofbeats. Let kids use their own imaginations like you let them enjoy playing with their toys. Children give up toys for more grownup pursuits as they are ready. That's why there are age suggestions on the packages.
I taught nursery school through third grade for many years and saw the value in children having imaginary friends. By third grade most were understanding the difference between real and makebelieve. It's a process that takes several years.
Mormon parents force kids to think that HF, HG, golden plates, temple magic are real. These are not childhood fantasies that nourish imaginations and help kids learn about themselves, about real and makebelieve, or about the spirit of universal love and giving. If it were true that mormon doctrine helped kids, these ideas would have caught on with kids worldwide. There would be versions of these ideas in children's stories and imagination everywhere just like there are versions of Santa in so many cultures.
The worst parenting in the mormon culture prevents children from sorting through these mormon stories and figuring out that they are not a real part of history or the world. Mormon parents and the mormon church punish children who ask questions and bring up flaws of logic. In fact they say that they as parents won't love the kids as much and they will not go to the highest heaven if they ask questions or don't accept canned answers.
Threats are not a good way to teach love, giving, or how to accept gifts with a grateful attitude.
Don't make Santa into a bad guy like the mormon god. As children talk about how Santa couldn't really do this or that, praise them. Say, "I'm glad to see you're thinking. Keep working on those ideas."
Santa is how I reasoned my way out of mormonism and it could help other mormon kids if parents would let them use their brains.
It's unrealistic to expect children to have adult perceptions when they can't even see out the window without a booster seat.
Imaginary friends and play are how kids test out ideas and form concepts. They can't learn about the world by driving a real truck, but they can imagine and learn about it and about themselves by playing with trucks. Taking that experience away from them is unnatural and unhealthy.
For parents who hate Santa, I would suggest finding books with imaginary friends and myths but not the Santa baggage.
Let kids enjoy fairies or thinking about having wishes, about gnomes and other secret imaginary friends.
Go to the library with them and find books that appeal to them and have talking animals and outlandish outcomes. There is nothing wrong with kids being kids and enjoying make beielve. Imaginary friends are a healthy and natural part of childhood.
| Outside of each Mormon cult building is a sign that reads "Visitors Welcome". Sometimes it is on the building under the cult insignia, or, on a useless, never changing marquee.
Mormon cult buildings are always on lock down. The only time you can enter the building in a "Visitor" sort of way is on a Sunday.
A non-Mormon who wishes to worship God in a Mormon cult building has to wait until Sunday to do so, and then, has to wait for the appropriate time to enter the chapel. The chapel is reserved for Sacrament meetings, which depending on the number of "Wards" in a building could be 3 to 5 times a day throughout the day - at any hour.
If the non-Mormon manages to match the right day with the right time and enter a Sacrament meeting, then a prescribed, correlated meeting will take place. The chance of the congregation singing "Praise to the Man", or "Hie Unto Kolob" are at least 30%. The chances of hearing about paying tithing will be at least 80%. The chances of hearing about Joseph Smith are at least 20-30%. The probability of the non-Member hearing a talk about the Holy Ghost helping the member find their car keys is, well, quite high. And last but not least, the single Ward member that always bares his testimony with a flood of tears will inevitably waste 15 minutes of time.
If the non-Mormon manages to stomach the entire hour (and perhaps without getting cheerios thrown at him by the bored child in front of him), he will immediately be set upon by Ward members to "press the flesh", take names, set up interviews, get home teachers involved and work hard to get a Book of Mormon into his hands before he leaves the building. If a name, phone number or address can be achieved, home teachers, the Bishopric, the Missionaries, or God help the guy - all three - will end up on his doorstep.
If the non-Mormon manages to match the right day with the right time and enter the Chapel, but not during Sacrament - and is caught, the same flesh pressing above will happen, except he'll be whisked away to Sunday School, Elder's Quorum or Gospel Doctrine classes. At that point, those classes will turn into testimony meetings.
A non-Mormon (and even non-Catholic) who wishes to worship God in a Catholic church can enter a Catholic church building during regular hours (and in some cases past that) Monday through Sunday, enter the chapel, sit at a pew and worship in peace - without being molested at all by anyone. Service times are posted regularly for those so inclined to participate. If by chance a Priest does press the flesh, generally it is a welcome and a thank you. No numbers are asked for, no Priests asking for names, phone numbers and addresses. No bibles thrust into his hands.
Oh yes, Visitors are most definitely welcome at the Mormon cult. If you can stomach it.
| Steve Benson argues that miracles are impossible and that Sandra Tanner is inconsistent to apply cool reasoning and logic to reject Mormonism and yet embrace Christianity.
Many atheists reject the concept of miracles because miracles violate the laws of nature. The strongest argument against miracles was advanced by David Hume. He argued that since a miracle is a violation of the laws of nature which we know through experience, no rational person can believe in miracles.
D’Souza took on this argument in a recent book. D'Souza suggests that through Hume’s own reasoning, this argument does not hold up, since Hume himself argued that scientific laws are empirically unverifiable.
For example, the speed of light can be measured a million times at a certain value, but we cannot know with absolute certainty that it will not change in the next measurement, or that the speed of light was not different at some point in the past. We also don't know whether somewhere else in the universe light travels at a different speed.
Hume also argued that there is no logical connection between cause and effect. We can see event B following event A millions of times, but we can never be absolutely sure that event A was the cause of event.
D’Souza argues that this leaves room for miracles; exceptions where the natural laws of science (which we cannot know for sure anyway) do not hold up as we normally expect them to. C.S. Lewis and call miracles additions to natural laws. Jesus’ walk on water can be accepted in the same way: as God Incarnate, He provided some extra forces to keep himself afloat.
In short, one may accept the possibility of miracles as a whole but at the same time keep a logical and skeptical mind.
Some theists, like myself, constantly question. In fact, studying/debating TBMs has in itself taught me a great deal about human reasoning, the capacity for self-deception and the constant need to challenge assumptions and arguments.
I have to believe Sandra Tanner didn't reject Mormonism for its miracle claims. If you permit the existence of a god, as many smart people do, then you can rationally allow for the miraculous. This rational allowance can be strengthened if you have experienced something in your life which you believe to be miraculous.
So, for me, an attack on Christianity's miracle claims is a weak attack. The better attack, if you wish to make it, is to take on questions such as whether there is any archaeological evidence of the Biblical exodus. The limitation on this type of attack is that the Bible has proven to be factually accurate in many, many ways....down to, for example, the identities of Babylonian functionaries which can be verified in other historical records.
So, Sandra Tanner was not being inconsistent. The rational tools one uses to reject Mormonism do not lead inexorably to rejection of all religion.
| The Mormon corporation continues to try and "mainstream" in order to attract fresh members not within the Morridor (or read BICs). It is having a difficult time with the image homophobia, necrotic baptisms and past and current racism.
Correlation has changed just about everything. Gone is just about everything that older members remember (road shows, individual teaching manuals, ability to teach your own material, reliance on doctrines provided by people like McConkie, Kimball, Peterson, Young, Smith) - and so, SO much more.
And more changes: The Prophet and Apostles are no longer witnesses of Jesus Christ, they are now witnesses of the "NAME" of Jesus Christ.
Denial of past doctrines is now standard. The new slogan is "WE DON'T KNOW". Even apologists like Daniel Peterson - who know unequivocally the reason behind the ban - are now parroting "we don't know".
The Mormon Prophet and his Apostles no longer have any revelation. Everything goes through correlation. Everything now is a "Proclamation" or just "advice". And of course, everything goes through their massive legal department and dozens of proof readers. Everything can be denied once the Prophet or Apostle has died. Even talks given during conference can be retracted, corrected, and printed differently in the Ensign.
The Prophet isn't a Prophet anymore, he's a "President". And while he has always been "President", the term is far more corporate fitting than ever.
Gordon B. Hinckley demanded that members "Stand For Something", but today, the Corporation stands for anything that cannot be legally binding or written off at a later time. It is slowly absolving itself from all responsibility or ties to true deity. If you didn't think it was a Corporation before, just look at it now. Shopping malls, luxury condominiums, lavish hotels, vast ownership of land, priceless works of art, cattle and ranching - and the list goes on.
Does Thomas S. Monson really talk to Jesus Christ? Don't ask us. Don't write us a letter.
For older members this must be an absolute slap in the face. BYU Professor Bott just got a backlash for this. What he "knows" is no longer "acceptable" - it must be forgotten. Young members have had carefully correlated, historically omitted material fed to them for years. They don't know what Bott knows so they attack him.
This new era of Mormonism without revelation or inspiration coupled with denial of any prior doctrines - has got to be difficult for older generational Mormons.
With Romney heading towards the election this year, it will only open up more information about Mormonism to the general public.
Where does Mormonism go from here to mainstream - hide its history - and keep current members paying?
| BYU religion professor James Faulconer explains why Mormon apostles don't seem to know much about theology:
"Faulconer also notes that, like the apostles at the time of Christ, Mormon apostles are rarely called from among those with religious or theological training. ... 'Theological training isn't needed for their primary responsibility: witnessing,' Faulconer says."
The article is accompanied by a photo of twelve old white guys who look like they're posing for the annual report's Board of Directors photo. Which I suppose they are.
| They can say that Brigham Young was speaking as a man when he made racist statements, not speaking as a prophet. But shouldn't a man's personal values and character be in line with those of his God if he is a prophet of that God? If he claims to speak for God, even part-time, then shouldn't his "off-camera" behavior be worthy of that privilege? Do you get to be a racist Jackwagon, or do you get to make up imaginary Godhoods, or do you get to marry 14-year-olds in your spare time as long as when called to, you can put on the proper Prophet of God image? Do you get to follow magic traditions condemned in the bible like Joseph Smith did because you are doing it as a man - and then be worthy to speak for God when God decides to flip the celestial on switch?
Mormonism Inc. is basically highlighting how shallow belief in their religious tradition is. It doesn't go deep down to the soul, changing a person forever. If it did, those who are presumably most committed to the religion - it's leadership - would not contradict God while speaking as a man. True Christianity is obviously an act they put on for the unwashed hordes, then drop in their free time to pursue whatever worldly opinion suits their individual personality. We aren't talking about a prophet who likes to wear Crocs in his off hours, when not dressing as a prophet. We are talking about values of character, which obviously aren't as valuable off stage.
| It is only natural, I suppose, that everyone in the world is taking a closer look at the Mormon church, with Romney's nomination almost inevitable. Within the past week we've seen hour-long TV programs (BBC and Al-Jazeera) asking probing questions (although not quite probing enough!) for world-wide audiences.
For several years my name has been on a list of "media contacts" for the Exmormon Foundation. Until this year I got very few calls. In the last few months that listing has kept me very busy, fielding calls from journalists in New York, Washington, London, Japan, Australia, etc. - several times a month. And this past week, since Santorum handed the nomination to Mitt, has been particularly intense. I had two hour-long interviews just today, one from Germany, one from Utah.
In a way it is very frustrating, because few of these non-Mormon journalists know enough to ask the right questions (even the one from Utah!), and - as we saw in the BBC and Al-Jazeera shows - to know when they are being lied to or deceived. On the other hand, it is gratifying to be able to open the eyes of these journalists to everything the church wants to keep hidden.
And I am hoping that as November approaches the whole world will know all they need to know about Mormonism.
It is a time when we all can make a difference: the Mormons are mobilizing their troops to flood news stories with favorable comments, trying to rebut anything negative in the reports. We need to make sure OUR voices are heard there, too.
Please do what you can!
| || Is Anybody Else Here Sick Up And Fed With These Journalistic Softball Articles About Mo Missionaries And That Cliched 14-Million Members BS? |
Tuesday, Apr 17, 2012, at 08:17 AM
Original Author(s): Beentheredunnthatexmo
Topic: EX-MORMON OPINION - SECTION 21 -Link To MC Article-
| ↑ |
It is totally irresponsible for LDS Inc to have Missionaries in Uganda with its history of oftentimes sudden political unrest.
LDS Inc should have a life insurance policy on every single one of those kids...and/or allow the parents to have one on their kids.
And here's the dumbest line from the article...
"It's a lot harder to teach the people in Europe than the people in Africa," adds Elder Lee, Elder Davis's companion. "It's Africa's time."
(Geez Elder ya think? I wonder why...could it be that many Ugandans don't have fingertip access to info about your scam like many more Europeans do?)
And here's another telling phrase about Mormon elitism and misogyny...
"Kampala is full of temptations. Near an Ethiopian restaurant popular with the missionaries, pop music blares outside, marijuana is sold down the road, and prostitutes solicit. Several young missionaries were caught fraternizing with women and sent home, the missionaries say."
(Oh yeah...i forgot...don't ever fraternize or approach prostitutes of the female persuasion about your pseudo-religious message as women are the downfall of mankind don'tcha know!)
Just a another sickening LDS Inc softball promotional piece about the blight of Mormonism fleecing and otherwise taking advantage of the poor and uneducated upon the face of the earth!
Or so it seems to me...
| I was a convert. During my years in TSCC, I watched a lot of other converts come and go, too. Here's my analysis:
- The investigator is set up with unrealistic expectations: when they show up to church and are introduced as an "investigator," everyone drools friendliness and fake warmth all over them.
- They are deluged with invitations, phone calls, visits, baked goods, and other "love-bombing." They don't understand what's really going on, so they feel accepted and cared for.
- Once baptized, they're given a calling to make sure they stay active.
- Most of the BIC ward members will reject the newbie because they aren't 4th or 5th or even 2nd gen Mormons. If they make cultural mistakes due to ignorance of all the unwritten rules, newbies will be judged and gossiped about behind their backs.Then, they will likely be ignored. They will not get the prestige callings or positions of responsibility.
- Soon, they're just another member who gets asked to do stuff, endlessly. Disillusionment will set in. Where did all the love-bombers go?
- The love-bombers may randomly reappear after guilt-inducing GC talks. But this time, the not-so-newbie knows what's up.
- Eventually, the convert gets tired of putting in all their time and effort and being treated like dirt. The smarter ones leave.
| You know that feeling whenever making a large purchase, such as buying a house or car, that as you get closer to completing the transaction, you find out the cost of backing out gets higher?
You make an earnest money payment, then you find out the house needs repairs the seller didn't disclose and won't fix and now is refusing to refund your money. And then you find out your OWN realtor knew some material fact about the house all along but he didn't tell you because he only cares about getting his commission?
Anyway, I digress. Mormonism employes the same kind manipulative sales tactics. It is all about backing you into a corner, making the cost of leaving is so prohibitively high that you feel like you have no choice but continue on with the charade.
You agree to get baptized but the missionaries never mentioned anything about the extend of Joesph's polygamy. Or no one told you that if you join, your non-mormon parents won't be able to attend your temple wedding. You go through the temple without knowing the nature of the oaths you are about to take, unless you walk out of the middle of the temple ceremony. You find mormonism has a tiered membership structure: the temple recommend holding crowd and everyone else, and this is pressure you into paying a full tithe. And the examples go on and on.
Mormonism is one big pressure box, and if you passive go along with the program, you find yourself in a place you never wanted or expected to be.
I propose a new 14th article of faith: Mormons shall always be closing.
| Not everyone takes the same view. This is mine, and why I think it works well.
About the Cult word.
All religions are cults. But the word is not a pejorative like it is used here very often.
I'm a purist when it comes to words. I don't accept what some author, or others, creates for a definition to sell books about other people's religious beliefs, or for any other reason. I use my critical thinking skills to evaluate: tone, bias, agenda, etc.
In a country that prides itself on freedom of religious choice, it's inappropriate in my view, to find fault with someone else's religious views with the agenda of trying to fix other people as if there was some kind of litmus test for the right or wrong religious views. Human beings do that very well for themselves.
1. formal religious veneration : worship
2. system of religious beliefs and ritual also its body of adherents
3. religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious also its body of adherents
4. system for the cure of disease based on dogma set forth by its promulgator - health ?s
5 great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work (as a film or book)especially such devotion regarded as a literary or intellectual fad. the object of such devotion. a usually small group of people characterized by such devotion
That would make all religion a cult, by dictionary definition.
I do not use the term: cult re: Mormonism anymore than I would for Lutherans, Catholics, Jews, Muslims,Buddhist, etc. And only as a general term. Never, ever to denigrate someone's beliefs, or their rights to their beliefs.
I am also passionate about our personal rights, all of them and that includes our religious beliefs of choice,(or none).
This is my definition of why I use the term tribe for Mormonism and why it is hard to leave it on many levels.
Mormonism, in my long experience and observation is more accurately described as a two century, predominately American, patriarchal-line of authority, generational, cultural, societal religious tribe with it's own sacred clothing, music, and language, architecture. The word: tribe is used in their lexicon. (As an adult convert, I was considered an adopted member of the tribe. )
Considering how tribes universally manifest, it is, in my view, the best way to understand how Mormonism creates a whole paradigm for the individual in a typically generational, patriarchal, familial, societal, religious context aka tribe complete with it's own unique rituals/ordinances, music, and language including special garments (underwear) to be worn day and night. It's their heritage. It's core is the Eternal Family. Disruption of that core provides the opportunity for mild to extreme measures for those that leave and no longer fit in the Eternal Family as they define it.
The various religions of the world have, throughout history, defined the specific rituals of each religious heritage-tribe. It's common for each one to place great importance on those rituals as the only correct way to perform the traditions and please their Gods: deities/savior, etc. Throughout the history of humanity, human beings have very often been instilled with the necessity of pleasing God and the horrific error and consequence of displeasing God.
If the traditions/beliefs, etc. don't appeal to a member of the group/tribe, for any number of reasons, and leaving becomes necessary, it is often met with hostility as the customs/rituals of the religious tribe have been rejected which is seen as a betrayal, and the prior member could be seen as an enemy as we see in religious wars. Not all religions take such a strong stand as many LDS believers do, but to some degree, those that leave their heritage/religious tribe will be often have a lot of difficulty retaining any kind of cohesive relationship with the believers.
In my very personal Exit Process from Mormonism, I refrain from using words or thinking scripts that have taken on a pejorative meaning like: cult. That is too often a negative word that shuts down acceptance, closes doors,instead of opening them. I want positive personal relationships and negativity won't accomplish that.
Besides, we cannot change anyone else's religious views, only they can do that if and when they have a need or desire. I am also passionate about not causing divisions by telling others what is right and wrong about their beliefs.
I have found that any kind of recovery, in my experience absolutely requires a positive, loving, approach. Otherwise negativity; as in bitterness, anger, resentment, name calling,etc, takes over and there is no room for the kind of recovery that is peace of mind.
I believe in the power of kindness also. If I don't want something said or done to me, I am going to refrain from doing that to others. This is a goal that is sometimes difficult to manage, however as we are all very human.
I often quote this statement as I have found through experience and observation that it is, indeed, very true.
"The individual has always had to struggle to resist the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."
Ultimately, we find our own way to make changes in our lives.
Leaving Mormonism, in my view, is predominately about taking our power back and owning it and doing it on our terms. That includes not giving other people the power to disrupt our peace of mind.
I changed my mind about my religious beliefs. I have done that many times in my long life. It's OK to do that, and I encourage anyone that wants to change their mind to do so.
It's important to understand that this is our life, we are the captain of our ship, we can direct it's course and battle the storms along the way.
Life is short. I'm amazed I have lived this long! :-)
There is great power in having an attitude of gratitude and living in harmony with those we love wherever that is possible.
| Of course the church very rarely admits there are problems, but the real giveaway (particularly if you still attend) is to keep an eye out for announcements and where a lot of emphasis and focus is placed.
At the moment in Europe there appears to be two key areas of focus 1) missionary work (clearly because numbers are down) and 2) YSAs (they are evidentally losing a lot)
1) This has been pushed so much in the past year or two that even many of the TBMs I associate with have had enough. We've had Area Presidencies set goals to double active church membership by 2020 - clearly never going to happen but it matters not to them because a)they complete their 3 year assignment and some other schmucks have to pick this up b) if it doesn't work then it will simply be the fault of the members c) it's so far in the future that in a few years time when it looks like we won't get anywhere close to this, it will just get conveniently forgotten about.
On an annual basis now we have been instructed by GAs to set aside the months of June and December to invite non-members to sacrament meetings (not seen a single person do this in our ward), there are constant fasts for missionary work, joint PH and RS meetings to train us on how to use pass along cards or social media and encouragement to 'like' anything church produced on Facebook or YouTube.
In short, the complete desperation of the leaders is palpable. I think the saturation of this message will also have a negative impact - it really is starting to turn off some of the most ardent believers who I have heard say 'what about us and our needs? It's all about new people' and 'what about my own spritual nourishment - everything we hear now is about recruiting more people but we're neglecting our own'.
2) YSAs must be wising up and leaving in droves. There is such focus on them now it is unreal. We've been instructed to push institute with everyone, the stake keeps track of each person's attendance at institute, emails list this around the stake weekly and follows up even if just one week is missed. Stake conferences now have an additional YSA focused meeting, and members are being assigned as mentors to each YSA.
So, all is clearly not well in Zion.
| Let us reason together:
The temple ceremony was changed by the evil Catholic Church, the whore of all the earth, who is now the Church's partner in the anti-abortion battle, a GA even speaking at the Cathedral of the Madeleine. What? No prophet saw that one coming?
The basic premise of the restoration is the Great Apostasy, where the LDS church had to restore the temple ceremony and all the church offices to its everlasting (alleged) First Century sameness... only to change it to make it more acceptable after doing a PR study.
Just think about that for a minute.
Something happened for them to feel they needed a survey among the faithful about what they liked/didn't like in the temple ceremony. Because they already knew changes were going to be made, but wanted to make sure they made the right ones BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO INSPIRATION.
The only possible reason for the swollen-headed 15 to give a rat's ass about what the members liked or disliked is loss of revenue. People left and they had to have mentioned the revolting temple ordinances as the main reason.
So all of us who wrote letters --good on us, it had an effect.
LDS, Inc. didn't care about the hurt feelings of black Americans until the Civil Rights Movement brought them legal grief BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO INSPIRATION AND NO COMPASSION. They are always behind the curve. They don't lead, they follow--scrambling to stay ahead of the tsunami of public scrutiny which swirls around their sacred secrets, their weapons of mass deception.
What will they sacrifice next to mainstream?
Will eliminating garments solve the problem of the Gay Day meets the Mormon Moment?
Will eliminating garments make women feel more empowered once they learn about polygamy as their destiny?
Will eliminating garments make up for blatant political activity requiring members to get out campaign against an issue?
Will eliminating garments stop kids at school from taunting Mormon kids with, "You're from Kolob! You're an Alien Freakazoid!"
I agree that change is coming in the wake of several failed attempts to shore up the Mormon image without correcting any of the problems which cause the image of "weird."
The church has failed in its various campaigns to change perception without actually changing its terrible behavior. It has tried the affinity grab to increase revenue through more American converts in the old "Every Member A Missionary." That one turned formerly pleasant neighbors into sharp-eyed opportunists waiting for a moment to get in some love-bombing, then dropping those who would not convert, exposing their friendship as a sham. Neighbors looked at each other and said, "Weird."
They tried the admiration grab by portraying unusual Mormons as your average gymnast, ballerina, Nascar driver, and ending with a cutesy "And I Am A Mormon." This is so far from the truth it is laughable. You can't even have a conversation with a really active Mormon because they are, I'm saying it, stunted. If you ask them for their opinion, you might as well save your breath and go directly to mormon.org and get their opinion right from the source--the Brethren. Here in Oakland they erected a huge billboard with a 30 foot white blond lady overlooking the OccupyOakland area "...and I'm a Mormon." Passersby: "That's some weird @#$%and"
They tried the victim ploy with the vehemence of a Brittany Spears fan shrieking, "Leave us alone! You are persecuting us!" because people started talking about Mormon Doctrine once they made a power grab for the presidency of the United States. Most of us would say that was predictable. It's so hard to feel sorry for a Big Billions corporation which no longer cares about doctrinal questions, doesn't know what it teaches, won't reveal how it spends donations, yet can order members to wear certain underwear while gardening.
Will garments disappear. No--in fact they are tightening in the crotch control area. It will no longer be shameful to show them but rather a badge of honor. I am certain there are men out there mowing the lawn in levis and garment tops as I write this. And if no one is around, they are dropping the tops to get some sun on that pasty skin.
This is what I see changing: the announcements. No more using social networking like a baseball bat. They are not building that huge computer center for nothing. Like the Nigerian money requests, they will evolve, becoming more like regular English and using better ploys.
More and more women will be featured in posts, blogs and articles with words like "leader" and "inspirational" and "cornerstone of the program." There will be no real power sharing, of course, just the suggestion of some. There will be statuettes and plaques honoring and noting accomplishments which contribute to the bottom line of the gargantuan LDS, Inc. in some way.
"Sister Johnson has been a conduit of charitable outreach to the entire Faraway Region for many years as she and Brother Johnson served a senior mission focusing on efficient food production, providing jobs an dignity and raising the standard of living for the large number of citizens in poverty."
In one fell swoop, the Mind Masters create the impression of female leadership and charitable outreach. Of course Sister Johnson has never done anything but carry out the dictates of Brother Johnson in the management of the coconut juice factory, which sells the juice and sends the money to Salt Lake. She keeps missionaries from bailing as they massage the workers, begging them to convert and insinuating that their jobs depend on it. The locals tithe on their earnings and nobody takes home a bottle of coconut juice without paying for it.
This is why they needed a top notch PR firm. Smoke and mirrors do not come cheap and you saw how awful it turned out when the last GA who had any real power (Hinckley) thought he could handle things by himself, like he had for decades.
I have switched out my beans and rice for chips and dip as more and more members are pulling up chairs next to us exmos and asking, "What is really going on? They don't tell us anything!"
So if you are a member reading this and feel like you are kept in the dark, come out of the cave. Have some more light, or at least some speculation. It's better than another seventy rounds of the story of the creation struggling to stay awake while wearing curtains.
| This is a major lie the church presents to investigators and the media. How many have joined because they liked the family aspect?
Where in their scriptures does this happen? The articles of faith? Their church schedules? Where and when is family put first?
Some may say: They have a designated family night! I say: Not so fast. They put out manuals and directives of what to do and say to your family on family night. Once again, they come first. They even schedule which night you're going to spend at home teaching yet another church message.
In my lifetime of experience as a Mormon, I can't think of any time when family came first. Was it Sunday? no! was it in the morning before everyone left the house for the day? NO. Seminary trumped every minute of family time. Was it evening? Nope, there was something church scheduled almost every evening. How about Saturday? Not hardly. Especially in the summer. How many saturdays have the men spent moving someone? Girls camp, scout camp, cleaning, landscaping, on and on. No time left to be a real family.
Yes, they have the little saying that they've worn out. But, they don't walk the walk. If you insist your family comes before something the bishop wants you to do, you will be looked down upon, and most likely pay for that down the road.
| Sunday is "Family Day?" Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!
A Mormon family goes to church together--unless the father is already there for earlier meetings, or the mother has been at choir rehearsal all morning. For the same reasons, they may not return home together.
Families are supposed to sit together at Sacrament meeting--unless one of them has a stake calling or a stake mission, or is in the bishopric of a student ward. The deacons and priests sit by the sacrament table, the organist, chorister, choir members, speakers, and bishopric have to sit up on the stand.
Heaven forbid if you talk to each other during meetings. Shush! you are to be reverent. No talking afterwards, either, or in the foyer.
For Sunday school, Primary, YM/YW, Relief Society, and the divided Priesthood, the children are separated from their parents, in completely different rooms.
Sunday night, the family is usually out of luck getting quality private time, because that is when the Home Teachers, VT's, missionaries, bishopric, etc. decide to invade. In our SLC neighborhood, the Mormons acted as if they owned our Sundays.
No parents allowed at youth activities! They just get in the way of the indoctrination camps and the tearful, mass-hysteria juvenile testimony meetings. No fathers allowed at those. No mothers allowed at the Scout activities.
The Mormon leaders tried to override me, many times, by being persistent and intimidating--and never taking one, two, three, four, or more "NO's" for an answer. They would come to pick up my children, anyway! I would stand at my front door, barring their entrance into my home, and say, "I am the parent, and head of this household, and my child staying home--because I say so!" In my case, my children did not want to go, in the first place. They thought the activities were lame, and that school work, sports, family, friends, and just about everything else was much more important. To us, the Mormon church's work was not "The Lord's work" at all--just unnecessary busywork.
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