John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by cinepro »

Gadianton wrote:I'm mixed on dehlin's statement. Realistically, people create social institutions and social institutions govern people's choices and realistically, the packaged life deal a person gets out of Mormonism isn't that bad compared to other packages out there. There are also other tight-knit communities where shunning happens in principle or practice to the same degree as Mormonism or worse.

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Where it gets questionable is Dehlin also has an advanced degree in psychology, right? And so he can't possibly hold the Church to it's own standards in the long run, he needs to consider it in terms of the much better ideas of men that frame social institutions, and at a certain point, it's helpful to realize that while yes, the Church is obviously false, it's also not really that far off from any other uptight institution out there, I'd say it's within a standard deviation from the norm.


Glad you said it!

Additionally, I can understand not liking the Church, but when it comes to social influence and "life direction", the Church is an inept, two-bit amateur when compared to the other societal forces that affect our lives.

For example, it's hilarious to see people complain about the Word of Wisdom and simple church teachings about coffee and such things, but then to totally ignore (or not even be aware of) the massive influence the sugar, corn, alcohol and other food industries have on our perceptions of what is healthful to eat and drink.

The Church is like a six-year-old playing chop sticks on the piano with its "God doesn't want you to drink coffee routine", while the food industries are playing you like a Beethoven sonata.

This applies to almost every aspect of life.

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by Kishkumen »

honorentheos wrote:I appreciate that you have a soft place in your heart for the Church, and an intolerance for John Dehlin. Knowing your dislike of Fox News, it was a bit of a cheap shot. But illustrative, too.


Wow, honorentheos. Today I am intolerant of John Dehlin. On other days, people accuse me of being his apologist. I guess I am whatever others imagine me to be based on what they imagine my motives are. Some days I am ribbed for being soft on the church, but to others I am one of the vilest anti-Mormons to ever have darkened the earth. This is all so fascinating.

Cable, brother. Cable.


D'OH! I guess that is where I should have lamented the loss of the Fairness Doctrine. Oh well.

Yeah. Churches are tax exempt charities in the United States. Fox News is a for-profit cable news organization. Both "ideally" would operate in the interest of the public good. But of the two, one of them is using taxpayer dollars to fund their activities and therefore should be more beholden to "ideals" than the other. IMO. Both should do significantly better than they do. So, whether or not you want to accept that Church is doing the membership wrong by playing gatekeeper with information, they are. They're wrong. It's not morally good or neutral when they do so.

The leadership of the Church is immoral when they hide facts from the membership. Do they do other things that are good? Sure. We're all a mixed bag like that. But the instance in question doesn't fall on the neutral or moral side of the line.


So, first of all, I am not sure I agree with the tax exempt status of churches. My thinking on the topic under discussion has little to do with that factor, since I believe that there are much better reasons for changing the law in that regard, one of them being their appalling record of hoarding money. Now, when you get into trying to enforce standards of factual truth, well, that is where we start mucking about with freedom of speech. Unfortunately, all of these issues are intertwined, so there is unlikely to be anything done that would redress the injustices of the current system.

The problem here is that religion as we generally think of it, for better or worse, is about faith. Faith regarding what is true about things and what is of transcendent worth, etc., etc. The church's standards of what is true and worthwhile are mediated by the beliefs and practices of the organization itself. Just because you or I believe that something is factual and of utmost importance does not mean that the leaders of the Church have to agree, and their failure to agree with us is not really, I think, a moral failing.

Now I don't think an absurd difference from worldly opinion on these matters is a sustainable course for the Church, so they are doing their best to find the right position between respectable non-LDS opinion and faith. In the meantime, as they look to see how they will handle these problems, I don't account them to be immoral because they do not immediately adopt our views. I just don't think it is realistic that leaders of a giant organization who have so much impact on the lives of others will precipitously act to satisfy the views of a small group of people, even if those views have real merit.

Furthermore, I think people have to accept that a religion's story will change over time. What people of one generation find faith in is not ever going to be the last word. Emphases have shifted over time in Mormonism in response to changing needs. It is kind of an artificial thing to say that what a researcher may discover today is what the LDS Church must adopt as truth when it teaches its story of faith to its members. The failure to change the story of faith to reflect to views of historians is not necessarily a burying of the truth.

So, even though I personally do not put much stock in the story the LDS Church tells--i.e., it really does not matter to me one way or the other--I am also not sure that the Church is morally obliged to tell my version, Sandra Tanner's version, Don Bradley's version, or Richard Bushman's version. Their hesitance to do so may not simply be about "hiding the truth."
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by Stem »

Meadowchik wrote:The quote is essentially two parts:
1) a life-absorbing high-demand religion
Based upon
2) a faulty narrative.

I would say both are deeply related, necessarily entangled. From the very beginning, the faulty narrative required high levels of control in order to secure retention.

I've enjoyed both Cinepro's and the Reverend's latest responses. I doubt I'll make my case any cleaner. If disagreement persists, I'm happy to move on realizing we've exhausted the avenues of convincing each other.

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by Kishkumen »

cinepro wrote:Additionally, I can understand not liking the Church, but when it comes to social influence and "life direction", the Church is an inept, two-bit amateur when compared to the other societal forces that affect our lives.

For example, it's hilarious to see people complain about the Word of Wisdom and simple church teachings about coffee and such things, but then to totally ignore (or not even be aware of) the massive influence the sugar, corn, alcohol and other food industries have on our perceptions of what is healthful to eat and drink.

The Church is like a six-year-old playing chop sticks on the piano with its "God doesn't want you to drink coffee routine", while the food industries are playing you like a Beethoven sonata.

This applies to almost every aspect of life.


There is a lot to chew on in this succinct post. Yes, the Church actually has a minimal amount of influence in people's lives in comparison with the behemoth marketing industry as deployed by global corporations. It would actually be nice if more were invested by the Church in countering the harmful messages of marketing, but I am afraid of how such an initiative would be executed.

Better not to give anyone bright ideas.

Oh, and, by the way, cinepro, the link to your blog in your signature is broken.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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cinepro wrote:The Church is like a six-year-old playing chop sticks on the piano with its "God doesn't want you to drink coffee routine", while the food industries are playing you like a Beethoven sonata.

This applies to almost every aspect of life.

Really? I'd say that compliance to rules like the Work of Wisdom is impressively high among Mormon. They are really good at using social pressures to get results among their followers.

The food industry convinces people to buy commodities with razor-thin profit margins. The church convinced me to hand over 10% of my gross paycheck for years. Fists full of money, much more than I paid the food industry, with much more profit in it for the church. Compare them to a giant company like Kraft Heinz and they are healthier and more secure.

The church is the real Mozart. :cool: They know where to put the social pressure to influence people to maximize their benefit. Who does it better? There may be bigger companies, but they work a lot harder and their position isn't nearly as secure as the church.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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fetchface wrote:
cinepro wrote:The Church is like a six-year-old playing chop sticks on the piano with its "God doesn't want you to drink coffee routine", while the food industries are playing you like a Beethoven sonata.

This applies to almost every aspect of life.

Really? I'd say that compliance to rules like the Work of Wisdom is impressively high among Mormon. They are really good at using social pressures to get results among their followers.

The food industry convinces people to buy commodities with razor-thin profit margins. The church convinced me to hand over 10% of my gross paycheck for years. Fists full of money, much more than I paid the food industry, with much more profit in it for the church. Compare them to a giant company like Kraft Heinz and they are healthier and more secure.

The church is the real Mozart. :cool: They know where to put the social pressure to influence people to maximize their benefit. Who does it better? There may be bigger companies, but they work a lot harder and their position isn't nearly as secure as the church.


Food industries do vary from country to country. One thing we notice when visiting the US is how unbearably sweet so much food is! However, no ideology ties an American consuming sugary foods to their eternal salvation.

In America you can find Mormon health fanatics who eat almost absolutely no processed white flour or sugar, but yet they do not drink green tea, or coffee, or even the occasional red wine for their health benefits. So what controls them more?

An obvious example is also the financial impact on women. An educated LDS woman is generally expected to raise children at home unless not possible. As a consequence, there are women who bypass secondary education or career preparation altogether, women who leave school when children are born, women who graduate but do not enter the workforce, women who do work and in Utah are paid much less than their male counterparts, arguably due to the Mormon expectations of women in Utah.

And a woman's financial autonomy has impact on her and everyone else.

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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Original quote -

"There’s this massive amount of decisions that you make, you know in a finite life, and to base that life on a narrative, when not only the narrative isn’t what it claims to be, when leaders know the narrative isn’t what it claims to be, and intentionally - for as long as they could - withheld the information that would allow people to make an informed decision about how they spend their finite time and resources –that’s profoundly immoral."

When big tobbacco does the above related to the health impacts of their products, we probably agree that is/was immoral. When big pharmaceutical hides side effects or markets their products for off label uses that expose people to more risk than they are knowingly accepting, we probably agree that's immoral. When the LDS church leverages the commitment of the membership to consecrate to the Church their times, talents and all that the Lord has blessed them with into channels that oppress others in the name of God, most of us here probably agree that is immoral.

We don't agree if we pretend that adults don't deserve to have access to information that affects them where an authority is abusing their role as gatekeeper. It shouldn't even be controversial.

ETA: There are now classic studies on the effects of people blame shifting off individuals to the umbrella institution that seem to apply here. The leadership are just victims of a system that has a cultural narrative they are powerless to affect or modify, right? The edifice that is Mormonism is to blame for whatever harms may occur but since institutions can't be moral agents, no one is making morally dubious decisions or really at fault if they themselves believer the narrative and therefore perpetuate the official version of LDS history. The whole thing is being any person's role or responsibility so blame the game not the player...
Last edited by honorentheos on Thu Jan 16, 2020 10:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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Meadowchik wrote:
Stem wrote:
I hear the point you are making, I don't think that really relates well with the narrative being told though. I don't think the leaders know and are lying. If they know, which at least some do, I think they are being sincere. There are plenty of people who get the problems with the narrative and yet still find themselves faithful to the church--leaders included. To me that suggests their suggestions and influence as it pertains to these decisions are their best sincere advice. I"m quite happy with how things have turned out so far, for me. I don't really think the leaders misled me in my decisions. I just think they are wrong in their conclusions about the Church.


The quote is essentially two parts:
1) a life-absorbing high-demand religion
Based upon
2) a faulty narrative.

IMHO you nailed it!
k

I would say both are deeply related, necessarily entangled. From the very beginning, the faulty narrative required high levels of control in order to secure retention.

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by Meadowchik »

honorentheos wrote:Original quote -

"There’s this massive amount of decisions that you make, you know in a finite life, and to base that life on a narrative, when not only the narrative isn’t what it claims to be, when leaders know the narrative isn’t what it claims to be, and intentionally - for as long as they could - withheld the information that would allow people to make an informed decision about how they spend their finite time and resources –that’s profoundly immoral."

When big tobbacco does the above related to the health impacts of their products, we probably agree that is/was immoral. When big pharmaceutical hides side effects or markets their products for off label uses that expose people to more risk than they are knowingly accepting, we probably agree that's immoral. When the LDS church leverages the commitment of the membership to consecrate to the Church their times, talents and all that the Lord has blessed them with into channels that oppress others in the name of God, most of us here probably agree that is immoral.

We don't agree if we pretend that adults don't deserve to have access to information that affects them where an authority is abusing their role as gatekeeper. It shouldn't even be controversial.


And the more gates they're keeping, the greater their responsibility.

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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Meadowchik wrote:An obvious example is also the financial impact on women. An educated LDS woman is generally expected to raise children at home unless not possible. As a consequence, there are women who bypass secondary education or career preparation altogether, women who leave school when children are born, women who graduate but do not enter the workforce, women who do work and in Utah are paid much less than their male counterparts, arguably due to the Mormon expectations of women in Utah.

And a woman's financial autonomy has impact on her and everyone else.

Right? I don't see many women who forego higher education because of the social influence that the food industry exerts on them. To say that the church leaders are amateurs at exerting social pressure is imho not accurate.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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honorentheos wrote:When big tobbacco does the above related to the health impacts of their products, we probably agree that is/was immoral. When big pharmaceutical hides side effects or markets their products for off label uses that expose people to more risk than they are knowingly accepting, we probably agree that's immoral. When the LDS church leverages the commitment of the membership to consecrate to the Church their times, talents and all that the Lord has blessed them with into channels that oppress others in the name of God, most of us here probably agree that is immoral.

We don't agree if we pretend that adults don't deserve to have access to information that affects them where an authority is abusing their role as gatekeeper. It shouldn't even be controversial.

ETA: There are now classic studies on the effects of people blame shifting off individuals to the umbrella institution that seem to apply here. The leadership are just victims of a system that has a cultural narrative they are powerless to affect or modify, right? The edifice that is Mormonism is to blame for whatever harms may occur but since institutions can't be moral agents, no one is making morally dubious decisions or really at fault if they themselves believer the narrative and therefore perpetuate the official version of LDS history. The whole thing is being any person's role or responsibility so blame the game not the player...


If I am the CEO of a corporation, making millions of dollars a year, and I know the corporation produces carcinogenic products, then, yeah, I think it is pretty obvious to any of us that the immorality of the CEO is something that needs to be called out and more. Mormonism is not a exactly a product in this sense, and the harm that aspects of the policies and doctrines clearly do to certain people are not exactly suppressed information. In part they represents differences in worldview that are very nearly irreconcilable.

If Mormonism works reasonably well for a large number of its adherents, then it is not as though everyone will easily and quickly recognize that there is an urgent, endemic problem, such that the failure of leaders to respond swiftly is a clear example of callousness to human life for the purposes of gaining selfish personal or corporate gain.

In my mind, there are two things that represent the sort of threat to which the leaders have morally failed in their response.

1. Gender: Here is a clear area where the Church's teachings pose a real risk to a certain percentage of the membership. The failure to act on this has cost many young people their lives and well being. If I were not able to see that for others (not generally speaking me and my friends) that this issue is poorly understood and threatening to the core of Mormon religious theology and identity (not my views but evidently those of others), then I would quickly conclude that the men who are failing to save lives based on a faulty reading of LDS theology are immoral.

I tend to think that, yes, in this area, what is happening is a moral failure. It is the clear failure of understanding that human life is far more important than controlling individuals' expression of their gender identity. I think that failure reflects on the people who are making these choices for the rest of the LDS Church. For this reason, most of all, I no longer have anything to do with the LDS Church. I do not advocate that anyone join the LDS Church as long as it poses a risk to non-cisgendered people.

2. Interviewing Children: Similarly, I think the failure to put the safety of children before interrogating vulnerable children away from the observing eyes of their parents is another unacceptable moral failure. In my mind, the morality of both of these issues is so clear, that, again, I could not advocate that anyone join the LDS Church or participate myself.

Those are the things that I find completely unacceptable and make me question the morality of the leaders of the LDS Church. You will notice that history is not among them. Having studied a few religions and their faith narratives, which often correspond poorly to academic history, the LDS Church does not stick out in my mind as being particularly egregious in misrepresenting its narrative. The relationship between history and faith is a complicated one, not really all that similar to the relationship between manufacturing a carcinogenic product, knowing that it causes cancer, and then hiding that fact.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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Kishkumen wrote:
honorentheos wrote:When big tobbacco does the above related to the health impacts of their products, we probably agree that is/was immoral. When big pharmaceutical hides side effects or markets their products for off label uses that expose people to more risk than they are knowingly accepting, we probably agree that's immoral. When the LDS church leverages the commitment of the membership to consecrate to the Church their times, talents and all that the Lord has blessed them with into channels that oppress others in the name of God, most of us here probably agree that is immoral.

We don't agree if we pretend that adults don't deserve to have access to information that affects them where an authority is abusing their role as gatekeeper. It shouldn't even be controversial.

ETA: There are now classic studies on the effects of people blame shifting off individuals to the umbrella institution that seem to apply here. The leadership are just victims of a system that has a cultural narrative they are powerless to affect or modify, right? The edifice that is Mormonism is to blame for whatever harms may occur but since institutions can't be moral agents, no one is making morally dubious decisions or really at fault if they themselves believer the narrative and therefore perpetuate the official version of LDS history. The whole thing is being any person's role or responsibility so blame the game not the player...


If I am the CEO of a corporation, making millions of dollars a year, and I know the corporation produces carcinogenic products, then, yeah, I think it is pretty obvious to any of us that the immorality of the CEO is something that needs to be called out and more. Mormonism is not a exactly a product in this sense, and the harm that aspects of the policies and doctrines clearly do to certain people are not exactly suppressed information. In part they represents differences in worldview that are very nearly irreconcilable.

Not true. You've been presented with multiple examples in this thread outlining how the LDS Church, choosing to manipulate information to it's own advantage, has meaningful life-changing impacts on pretty much anyone who is an adherent. From the youth that give up scholarships to serve missions and spend thousands of dollars on them while postponing college, women who pass up higher education to become homemakers, the push to marry early, the message that living together prior to marriage is a sin all leading to early life-altering behaviors, to tithing over paying bills and senior citizens leaving family and spending their own private resources on missions...those are simple, almost universal ways the LDS church isn't offering different options in the worldview market but putting up cattle catchers maneuvering people into life-choices presented as black/white, right/wrong, Godly/devilish. And those are just the most universal, culture-wide examples that were already mentioned or that come immediately to mind.

You're defending the indefensible, Kish.

If Mormonism works reasonably well for a large number of its adherents, then it is not as though everyone will easily and quickly recognize that there is an urgent, endemic problem, such that the failure of leaders to respond swiftly is a clear example of callousness to human life for the purposes of gaining selfish personal or corporate gain.

Cool. Let them make that and other life decisions based on the information available rather than deciding for them by withholding the information that might lead them to choose differently.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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Not true. You've been presented with multiple examples in this thread outlining how the LDS Church, choosing to manipulate information to it's own advantage, has meaningful life-changing impacts on pretty much anyone who is an adherent. From the youth that give up scholarships to serve missions and spend thousands of dollars on them while postponing college, women who pass up higher education to become homemakers, the push to marry early, the message that living together prior to marriage is a sin all leading to early life-altering behaviors, to tithing over paying bills and senior citizens leaving family and spending their own private resources on missions...those are simple, almost universal ways the LDS church isn't offering different options in the worldview market but putting up cattle catchers maneuvering people into life-choices presented as black/white, right/wrong, Godly/devilish. And those are just the most universal, culture-wide examples that were already mentioned or that come immediately to mind.

You're defending the indefensible, Kish.


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Uh, no. I am failing to condemn something that you believe is indefensible and egregiously bad. In the scheme of things, the values and community of Mormonism are, relatively speaking, innocuous and wholesome. Millions of people have lived decent, happy lives with similar values and practices, and our difference of opinion with the Church does not invalidate their experience. If you feel you were victimized by Mormonism, then I am so genuinely happy that you are out and living a life more fulfilling to you. But that is quite different from insisting that other Mormons are victimized and robbed of something, and that the leaders are immoral men for their role in guiding and sustaining this community.

We aren’t going to agree on this. I can’t find moral certainty in judging others in such a complicated situation. Maybe that’s my weakness. You seem to be a lot more certain about it. That’s you. I accept it. I am not persuaded that I must embrace judging all top LDS leaders as immoral people.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by honorentheos »

Kishkumen wrote: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Uh, no. I am failing to condemn something that you believe is indefensible and egregiously bad. In the scheme of things, the values and community of Mormonism are, relatively speaking, innocuous and wholesome. Millions of people have lived decent, happy lives with similar values and practices, and our difference of opinion with the Church does not invalidate their experience. If you feel you were victimized by Mormonism, then I am so genuinely happy that you are out and living a life more fulfilling to you. But that is quite different from insisting that other Mormons are victimized and robbed of something, and that the leaders are immoral men for their role in guiding and sustaining this community.

We aren’t going to agree on this. I can’t find moral certainty in judging others in such a complicated situation. Maybe that’s my weakness. You seem to be a lot more certain about it. That’s you. I accept it. I am not persuaded that I must embrace judging all top LDS leaders as immoral people.

You seem quite dismissive of the value of democratized information. Interesting.

You claim I'm certain and you are letting live as let live. That's about as flipped from the facts as can be. I'm arguing that adults ought to be able to have the information to make those choices for themselves. Period. Let them then choose to stay, I don't care. That you are casually arguing for authoritarian control is...disturbing. Let them love Big Brother, and let Big Brother love them, right?
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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The Mormon church through its leaders at least for a generation or 2 or 3 has laid out a preexistence, life and life after death "package" that it hopes everyone exposed to Mormonism will adhere to the package they say is ordained of God. Leaders have not been open to admit there may be serious "holes" in the package; in fact they may know parts of package may be not of God at all. Nevertheless the package is promoted as from God and all humans on the planet should accept it and live it if they want to become exalted in the next life.

Suppose a child born today is provided another life package- one that contained truth/ contained alternative narratives to FV, need for Baptism, nonpower of the priesthood, different paths to a healthy lifestyle, education alternatives , marriage possibilities without temples Or even same faith requirements, no tithing requirement just give $ as you are led, no need/requirement to be a mish - etc?

I would suggest that baby would grow up and make life choices entirely different from the past. Would the child lead a happy ? I would guess every current Fab 15 would answer " no way".

And me ? Perhaps yes and perhaps no!

k

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

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honorentheos wrote:You seem quite dismissive of the value of democratized information. Interesting.

You claim I'm certain and you are letting live as let live. That's about as flipped from the facts as can be. I'm arguing that adults ought to be able to have the information to make those choices for themselves. Period. Let them then choose to stay, I don't care. That you are casually arguing for authoritarian control is...disturbing. Let them love Big Brother, and let Big Brother love them, right?


That’s a thoroughly bizarre caricature of what I am saying, and, indeed largely irrelevant to most of what I am saying.

I love democratized information. I swim in democratized information. Information is largely democratized thanks to the internet whether the LDS Church likes it or not. But that was not really the question we were discussing. I thought we were discussing whether the leaders of the Church were being immoral in creating a situation in which members would not learn everything about Mormon History from the Church.

I disagreed that they were immoral because I believe the situation is complicated by many factors. The Church is trying, it seems to me, to do a better job, and I am happy for that, but it is a lot to ask for them to flip the entire narrative just because we don’t think the story of the faith matches our view of history. You have your moral certitude about this, and it does not seem to allow for the great responsibility of leading such a large organization in a way that does not destroy it and turn people’s lives upside-down.

Are they doing a bang up job? Maybe not. But they are trying. The essays were an attempt at something. Funding the Joseph Smith Papers and making historical documents available is doing something good. Are these things immoral? No.

I don’t see, in any case, that adults don’t have sufficient information to make up their own minds for themselves. We don’t live in a totalitarian state with a lockdown on all complicated facts that can challenge people’s assumptions. The LDS Church does not seem to be trying to create such a thing in its own community. It’s not like there is no discussion of the negative facts, but it would be a lot to ask any organization to push an interpretation that counters its own belief system and brings grief to its members.

Look, you and I may find most LDS apologetics unconvincing, but isn’t that because there was enough openness that allowed discussion of the problems in the first place? Were the apologists supposed to argue against Mormonism? If they believe, would we expect them to? They believe and they think there are good reasons to, so they interpret the facts differently from the way we do. But the facts are not hidden, and the Church does not prevent apologists from mentioning them.

It just seems to me that, in the real world, people who value a community enough to devote themselves to it will try to nourish and promote it, and this will lead to a rosier view of uncomfortable facts, or even the ignoring of uncomfortable facts. But I don’t see these people who believe and promote their rosy view of the faith as immoral or liars. It is sometimes tough to know what is the right thing to do when so much is at stake. It is hard to be objective about something you love and are emotionally invested in.

These things will work themselves out over time. They will probably not work themselves out to our satisfaction on our timetable. But really, to say that I am now pro-authoritarian and against democratization of information is just silly.
“God came to me in a dream last night and showed me the future. He took me to heaven and I saw Donald Trump seated at the right hand of our Lord.” ~ Pat Robertson
“He says he has eyes to see things that are not . . . and that the angel of the Lord . . . has put him in possession of great wealth, gold, silver, precious stones.” ~ Jesse Smith

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honorentheos
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by honorentheos »

Let's toss in a specific example and ask: was the decision to quote the entire Wentworth Letter in a PS/RS manual except for a couple of controversial, problematic sentences morally justifiable in your opinion? Would it be more or less morally justifiable to have quoted the entire letter instead and let the membership have the discussions they would have as they chose to have them?

viewtopic.php?p=669331#p669331
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Meadowchik
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by Meadowchik »

Another example: woman has a career, but it's as expected because she is unmarried. She wants to marry, though, but the only interest she experiences from men is from non-member men. Of course she cannot choose them, she has faith in the gospel, in temples, and must have the priesthood in her home?

How many LDS live life alone when they don't want to be alone, because of their faith?

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fetchface
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by fetchface »

I think in the leader's mind (someone like Boyd K. Packer), there is some future moment in the afterlife where the LDS member will thank him for filtering the information and keeping the member on the covenant path. They'll laugh together about how they avoided a sticky situation of being confounded by those pesky, less than useful facts. I can recognize that the leaders genuinely believe that the ends they are working toward justify the means (just like they do for God in D&C 19 when God admits to lying to keep people on the path). These leaders may feel they are making a small moral sacrifice but they feel that the goal is so infinitely good that it can justify playing a little hardball with the devil.

I can recognize that these things are going on in their head and accept that they are trying to do good and I can still be pissed off about the right to informed consent that they deprived me of and all of the emotional harm they caused me when I was young. I think they are self-absorbed assholes for not trying harder to step outside themselves and see the world through the eyes of others. Are they immoral? Not in their moral system, but in mine they are. I feel confident that mine is the right system, but so do they.
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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by kairos »

Anyone think the pressure on children and young people to follow/live/comply/carryout the life "package" we have been discussing comes mostly from non-local leaders, local leaders, ward members, friends/relatives or close family?? i see pressure from all angles in my TBM family (me the nevermo). Like the Mormon life package is just assumed to be the way to go and it is emphasized at every level. Case in point, grandchild had numerous athletic scholarship offers but chose YBU because of the nonmormon influences at the other schools which included ivy league and stanford 4 year full ride scholarships. Seems like BYU fit the life package being dealt and even though this young person could become much more educated and career oriented in the other environments, parents felt she might also 'lose" her faith and applied some pressure in the decisionmaking.
maybe blame is not the game to be played here- perhaps every child and young person currently caught in the web of the Mormon life package needs someway to discover other life packages! but how?

what do you think?

k

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Re: John Dehlin on the Immorality of Mormonism!

Post by Kishkumen »

honorentheos wrote:Let's toss in a specific example and ask: was the decision to quote the entire Wentworth Letter in a PS/RS manual except for a couple of controversial, problematic sentences morally justifiable in your opinion? Would it be more or less morally justifiable to have quoted the entire letter instead and let the membership have the discussions they would have as they chose to have them?

viewtopic.php?p=669331#p669331


I suppose that depends on what the purpose of the lesson is, and the motivations that drove the focus on certain aspects of the letter versus others. In my mind, I see some topics, while ancillary, sucking up all the time. Now that I am once again teaching Late Republic as a prelude to Empire, I am reminded of how tempting it is to try to cover everything. It all seems very important, but, considering time limitations and the need to focus on more limited goals, I need to trim important topics or even skip things.

So, is the failure to include the whole letter a devious plan to hide history or a practical measure to focus the discussion on certain things in the allotted time? Yes, the stuff cut is bound to be more controversial (or less useful), but it is not exactly scandalous or mind-blowing. Distraction or deal-breaker? I say distraction.

I’m just not seeing immorality behind the decision not to include the whole letter in this manual.
“God came to me in a dream last night and showed me the future. He took me to heaven and I saw Donald Trump seated at the right hand of our Lord.” ~ Pat Robertson
“He says he has eyes to see things that are not . . . and that the angel of the Lord . . . has put him in possession of great wealth, gold, silver, precious stones.” ~ Jesse Smith

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