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Online Weisshaupt

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Mormons and the LDS Church
« on: October 02, 2017, 12:38:34 PM »

In suggesting that if you want access to canning machine you can approach Mormons in your area..  I found I had more to say about my experience so far with Mormons and investigating their  religion.  I haven't personally joined the church yet, but my wife has.  We have had missionaries coming to teach in our home for about 6 months now ( average of once every two weeks for an hour or so) and we have been friends with a Mormon family in  town since my daughter met theirs in school.  Both my wife and I are introverts, so if we say we like you and have you in our home, its because we actually like you and are comfortable around you.  That process was extraordinarily fast with this family, and has continued to be with the other Mormons we have met through them. Its a group of people that we can fit with more the most part (Michelle and I have never felt we fit or belonged anywhere- so call this a best fit perhaps?)  The Mormon friends  were never really pushy about joining, and really just offered information when asked. ( They let missionaries do the pushing, and if you can't handle a 18 year old boy, well, get over it) . But by and large I already act Mormon.. Missionaries call me a dry ( un-Baptisted) Mormon.

We ended up attending activities because my Daughter would want to be involved with theirs . My daughter participated in a Heritage Celebration honoring the new Fort Collins Temple (it was a massive dance routine for the most part), and went to a girls camp where she spent  all week firing a .22 ( and loved it) Mormon youth activities tend to sway towards the sort of "wholesome" things that were common in the 50s. They push as may of the boys to become Eagle Scouts as they can ( but may end up starting their own Scouting organization if PC culture continues to worm its way in to BSA)  The Church issued an unapologetic statement about Gay Marriage in the 90's ( unapologetic statement about Gay Marriage in the 90's)  and if the Federal government ever decides to dictate that Churches must perform Gay weddings there is a very high likelihood that the Mormons will go to war over it. ( Unlike the Catholic Church led by the anti-pope)  They also encourage members to engage in "Family Home Evening" which is really just getting the family together with no TV, playing games, reading some scripture , and making sure the family is the central unit of your life.

Of all of the Churches I have investigated in my lifetime, the Mormons, in my unscientific and biased survey, seem to be the best at practicing what they preach. But then I am told there is a huge difference between Mormons in Utah, and Mormons elsewhere ( Power corrupts)  I saw a little bit of that when I traveled for business- Mormons in Uta were polite, but standoffish, and apparently with other Mormons are more likely to take that "Holier Than Thou" scolding stance  over infractions of rules ( other wise known as culture guarding)

Also keep  in mind, I  tend to look at churches as tools: methods of establishing and maintaining a culture and community of like minded individuals. ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dsmyzC4AkFQ) So I am one of those apostate individuals that Ann Barnhardt would accuse of not "believing any of that crap" - and really that is most of my basis for being reluctant to join the Mormons.. I would be happy to partake in the culture and ethics preached, but can't genuinely say I believe the Book of Mormon to be True.  I do believe there is truth to be found in the Book of Mormon, but I will tell you the same thing about Lord of the Rings.

SO things I like socially and culturally:
1)  Mormons Place a huge emphasis on Family, Preparedness, and self-sufficiency.  - This includes food storage, individual skill building (  the church offers classes on entrepreneurship, running your own business and other skills that  promote self-sufficiency. 
2)  Mormons place a lot of effort into the service of others - and in my experience genuinely often  back that up with action ( Another reason I am reluctant to join - I already have too much to do and I already engage with far too many people for my liking)
3)  Mormons don't have "Paid" Clergy.  Its not strictly true of course, but most local positions are volunteer ( the Mormon's denote this a "Calling")  and rotate around.  The Higher officials are paid in that they can receive  reimbursement for expenses - including cars, house payments, food and so on, but someone else in the church has to sign that check. Not perfect as far as anti-corruption incentives go, but better than what most churches provide. .
4) The Church runs its investments such that there is an emphasis on giving the Fed as little money as possible, and they have methods - like tithing in stock, that help that along.
5) The Church runs its own welfare system and that system is administered as a hierarchy- with most money collected being used within the Ward in which it is collected, with the ability to ask for more within the hierarchy if needed. The Media tends to under-report Mormon activity in disaster releif, but they tend to be there before the Red Cross and able to do more once there.
6) The Church is very egalitarian in structure - with  all men holding the powers of the priesthood and being allowed to perform baptisms, bless the sacrament, and so forth. There is no set preacher, and different members are asked to speak on different topics during the Sacrament Meeting ( and sacrement is offered every Sunday)
7) Mormons basically subscribe to the Bach/Illusions  everything is "learning or fun" philosophy. Everything is about self-improvement - moving toward a better you physically, morally and spiritually.

Theologically, I found a lot to like, but these is where you get into the weeds   I like the idea that Mormons believe God didn't stop talking to us 2000 years ago, and that the church basically has the power to add new doctrine to keep up with changing times, but to do that, they have to appoint imperfect humans. Mormons believe that Jesus came to Joseph Smith and through him re-established the authentic Authority of Jesus Christ  in a body of men, and that Christ spoke through him and subsequently through the current Prophet of the church ( The look of adoration for this man at the Fort Collins celebration had me wondering where they were passing out the cool-aid. It was scary and cultish.  )  I see the huge potential for abuse in this, and as you get into the history of he church and its flirtations with polygamy, you could argue that Joesph Smith himself abused the power - but it was also a method of taking care of women and children whose Father had died on the exodus west - or at the hands of persecution - which happened a lot - Joseph Smith was executed by a Mob while in a Jail cell) .  The church ( partly as a condition of Utah becoming a State)  "clarified" this doctrine ( changing times)  and it is no longer part of what is taught. ,, and as far as I can tell morphed into this "Temple Sealing " ritual, where you can "bind " your family ( both living and dead)  into the faith and offer salvation posthumously (Mormons typically find this a huge selling point. Not so persuasive with me - but then  I typically  hear "eternal life" and think " Why would I want to live forever? Longer perhaps, but forever? ") 

I don't like:

1) Everyone is an extrovert or an introvert faking it
2) The emphasis on the Book of Mormon being True in the factual historical sense.
3) The emphasis on Temple Ritual ( different than church) /Family Sealing ( Why would I want to ever see my mother again? I don't want to see her now and she is alive. )
4) Your duties are basically Military "Volunteer" - so  someone else gives you your "calling" - you don't necessarily pick it yourself . You can decline of course, but with social ramifications. ( which of course vary from Ward to ward)

However, for the most part the message does not differ a whole lot from  other Christian sects.  Jesue Christ dies for your sins. You must repent to take part in salvation.  The Book of Mormon is simply  quoted as another testament of God's word in conjunction with the Bible,  and for the most part its consistent and not in conflict ( at least no more than the Bible is with itself- and if you think there are no such conflicts, please, let's agree to disagree, and I'll concede right now you are more spiritually advanced and knowledgeable on the topic because you most probably are. )  Joseph Smith is held to be on par with Luke, John or Paul, and is not worshiped in his own right, and what  Joseph Smith and subsequent prophets have added, while considered as scripture,  really  tends to be commentary or further expansion on material already present in the Bible .. and not diversionary from it.

 The book of Mormon is basically tells the same story over and over.. A group of people have faith in God and follow his teachings and begin to prosper, then their prosperity makes them greedy and lazy  and they become corrupt, and their civilization undergoes a war and falls. Rinse. Repeat.  There is more of an emphasis on individualism, self-reliance and family in the tales , but basically, there was not a lot to find offensive.  Christ himself doesn't show up till the very, very end, spends three days and basically just gives the sermon on the mount again. Nothing new or controversial there. These stories came on gold plats that Joseph Smith was purportedly allowed to find and translate via Holy intervention.

Most of the Mormon stuff comes in the Doctrines and Covenants which are the revelations of the Mormon prophets- which is where the no Tea or Coffee thing originates as well as a number of other uniquely Mormon rituals and restrictions ( like holy underwear - which probably started as a means of enforcing modesty...) . . this part I am still reading and digesting, but I think there was usually a cultural or social purpose behind such writings, and usually its not a bad or harmful one.

They do ask a 10%  tithe, and every one of them attests that once you do it, money matters ( for them)  seem to always work out ( largely because the Church will write you a check for your mortgage if you loose your job and so forth.. )  Its an informal welfare system, and some wards are stingier than others and mileage may vary ....

But so far I am thinking-- if I am going to join a clan I could probably do worse.

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2017, 01:22:17 PM »
Thank you for the information; interesting.

Weisshaupt, if you and yours are comfortable with these folks as your clan, more power to you.
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Online AlanS

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2017, 03:27:26 PM »
I've worked around a few of them. Although we never got around to having a conversation of religion (in fact, unless asked, you'd never know they were anything but a Christian), the rest of your assumption seems to match what I know of them.
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Offline Libertas

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2017, 05:44:13 PM »
They are hard working family-oriented people...the mob hired them in all professions needed where there was a need to eliminate the chance of graft when the strip was built...which says more about their own folks more than others in my mind...and I've known a few over the years and have no cause for concern in working with them or conducting business and enjoying casual civility with them...

That being said, I do have to look at them as cultish what with that bizzare lost tribe of Israel and magical plates in the forest et al...none of which has ever been proven...but a benign cult as far as cults go.

I think in the cult realm the Satanic minions of Mohammad rank worst, followed closely by Proglodytes, Mansonites, Scientology, etc etc...Mormons probably way at the end...

Heck, the apostate Christian churches like Episcopalians, that crap Obama sat ass in...as way worse than the Mormons!
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2017, 06:49:16 PM »
I'm told that my G-Grandfather was an elder in the church. Apparently none of it wore off onto me...

Online Weisshaupt

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2017, 06:54:58 PM »

That being said, I do have to look at them as cultish what with that bizzare lost tribe of Israel and magical plates in the forest et al...none of which has ever been proven...but a benign cult as far as cults go.


Well, as I said,  "the Book of Mormon is a true history"  angle is hard for me to swallow. But if Joseph Smith's goal  was to try and form a cult around himself to become rich and sleep with his friends wives,  he ended up doing a pretty lousy job of it. You couldn't come up with a better idea than a family of  jews ( I think its over-stating it that they were a tribe)   came to America and built and destroyed multiple civilizations - large enough to have cities - without leaving a trace?    Also the Book of Mormon reads very much like the old testament - which for me means, inaccessible and rather dull.. and its hard for me to believe a sham artist would spend the time and energy to write it all, much less fail to come up with more a more visible and believable story than gold plates found in a hill that few were allowed to see and which had to be returned to an angel.. SO I suspect he was sincere in what he said and believed, and that sincerity worked to convince others, and he was willing to bear more than a small amount of persecution to continue on, up to and including his own murder and the murder of firends and followers. .  Maybe he was just sick and heard voices in his head. Maybe he was a prophet and God wiped all evidence of these things from the face of the earth to test our faith. Maybe they didn't even happen here and they happened in an alternate Titor Verse. . I tend to try and keep an open mind on things that can't be proven. Science assumes God has better things to do than manipulate lab results and archeological digs.  If he doesn't and he is, then all bets are off.

The looks of adoration and  admiration some showed for the current prophet at that celebration did spook me a bit though.  they would wave just hoping he would wave back, and they would get so excited if he did acknowledge them. Its was worshipful...and   That was really cultish to me.. but not everyone there was doing that. But enough were I was more than a bit uncomfortable. Its just a man guys. He may even hold the true priestly authority and get God's instruction for the church. I am sure he lives well and comfortably, maybe even lavishly at the expense of the church - but that wouldn't be something new.. ( anyone been to the Vatican? SHeesh.) 

Hence I still have me reservations. If it helps my wife and she is happy, I don't see a lot of harm in it and a lot of good that can come of it.. But I am not sure I can put in the time and energy to fake it,  and I am not to the point where I wouldn't be, and probably never will be there.  I  have said before, I think GOd wants me to come by a different road. Maybe my  road joins with Christ's road at some point, but I never feel like that road is an option  from where I am standing at any given moment. INTJs don't do much of anything on faith I guess.

 


Offline Libertas

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2017, 06:54:10 AM »

That being said, I do have to look at them as cultish what with that bizzare lost tribe of Israel and magical plates in the forest et al...none of which has ever been proven...but a benign cult as far as cults go.


Well, as I said,  "the Book of Mormon is a true history"  angle is hard for me to swallow. But if Joseph Smith's goal  was to try and form a cult around himself to become rich and sleep with his friends wives,  he ended up doing a pretty lousy job of it. You couldn't come up with a better idea than a family of  jews ( I think its over-stating it that they were a tribe)   came to America and built and destroyed multiple civilizations - large enough to have cities - without leaving a trace?    Also the Book of Mormon reads very much like the old testament - which for me means, inaccessible and rather dull.. and its hard for me to believe a sham artist would spend the time and energy to write it all, much less fail to come up with more a more visible and believable story than gold plates found in a hill that few were allowed to see and which had to be returned to an angel.. SO I suspect he was sincere in what he said and believed, and that sincerity worked to convince others, and he was willing to bear more than a small amount of persecution to continue on, up to and including his own murder and the murder of firends and followers. .  Maybe he was just sick and heard voices in his head. Maybe he was a prophet and God wiped all evidence of these things from the face of the earth to test our faith. Maybe they didn't even happen here and they happened in an alternate Titor Verse. . I tend to try and keep an open mind on things that can't be proven. Science assumes God has better things to do than manipulate lab results and archeological digs.  If he doesn't and he is, then all bets are off.

The looks of adoration and  admiration some showed for the current prophet at that celebration did spook me a bit though.  they would wave just hoping he would wave back, and they would get so excited if he did acknowledge them. Its was worshipful...and   That was really cultish to me.. but not everyone there was doing that. But enough were I was more than a bit uncomfortable. Its just a man guys. He may even hold the true priestly authority and get God's instruction for the church. I am sure he lives well and comfortably, maybe even lavishly at the expense of the church - but that wouldn't be something new.. ( anyone been to the Vatican? SHeesh.) 

Hence I still have me reservations. If it helps my wife and she is happy, I don't see a lot of harm in it and a lot of good that can come of it.. But I am not sure I can put in the time and energy to fake it,  and I am not to the point where I wouldn't be, and probably never will be there.  I  have said before, I think GOd wants me to come by a different road. Maybe my  road joins with Christ's road at some point, but I never feel like that road is an option  from where I am standing at any given moment. INTJs don't do much of anything on faith I guess.

I am reminded of my first conscious exposure to deep Catholicism...in a room with priests and nuns (the reason benign and unimportant)...and to commence a meeting they launch into a prayer, being a half-way decent non-Apostate Protestant I was expecting a short homage to Our Lord and Savior...lo and behold, nothing of the sort, a long litany (I mean long and a litany) of Saints I could barely recall and while a lot of time has passed since I think Jesus might have snuck in there at the end but I cannot remember for sure...all I remember is thinking "What is all this?  What happened to Jesus?  Isn't He the Light and The Way?" so yeah, I was like...I guess centuries of ritual created a sh*tload of unneeded residue!  Why can't people keep it simple?  Jesus kept it simple, come to Him, He said!  Why are people such assholes?!  Anyway, been asking that latter question my whole life...apparently assholes are liked.  The same dynamic of not being able to let go of old ways drove me nuts with my brother years ago when he was struggling financially...but was still tithing 10% to the church as the Old Testament says.  I looked at him and asked "Are you Jewish?"  His reply, "Uhh, no."  Me: "Then why are you following the Old Testament and not the New?"...Spit, sputter, blah, blah...  should have known better than teasing an INTJ with such an obvious logic error.  He is much better at keeping stuff to himself now.

As for an INTJ's and faith is concerned, there is faith backed by intelligence and a message that appeals to our better nature, and there is faith based upon lies and cults of personality and with messages appealing to some darker elements of our nature...most people know the difference.  For myself the whole God and science reconciliation thing will reveal itself in due time and it will be like "Yeah, cool", and it is going to be better than the Atheist viewpoint that well, something happened, this ooze met that ooze and "poof!" life and the universe just like happened, man...God had nothing to do with it".  Uhh huh, yeah...well, a wise wager would be on the side of God than not, right?  I mean if there isn't a God, no worse off, if there is and you bet against Him, well, now you're screwed!
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2017, 09:10:02 AM »
I am reminded of my first conscious exposure to deep Catholicism...in a room with priests and nuns (the reason benign and unimportant)...and to commence a meeting they launch into a prayer, being a half-way decent non-Apostate Protestant I was expecting a short homage to Our Lord and Savior...lo and behold, nothing of the sort, a long litany (I mean long and a litany) of Saints I could barely recall and while a lot of time has passed since I think Jesus might have snuck in there at the end but I cannot remember for sure...all I remember is thinking "What is all this?  What happened to Jesus?  Isn't He the Light and The Way?" so yeah, I was like...I guess centuries of ritual created a sh*tload of unneeded residue!  Why can't people keep it simple?  Jesus kept it simple, come to Him, He said!  Why are people such assholes?!

Power. Well, If I say God said it, then I can get them to do what I want. If I tell them to worship saints then I can get them to worship me as a saint.. And don't question me, I am a man of God- above you- better than you - have faith  in god and in ME.

Quote
"In extracting the pure principles which he taught, we should have to strip off the artificial vestments in which they have been muffled by priests, who have travestied them into various forms, as instruments of riches and power to themselves. We must dismiss the Platonists and Plotinists, the Stagyrites and Gamalielites, the Eclectics, the Gnostics and Scholastics, their essences and emanations, their logos and demiurges, aeons and daemons, male and female, with a long train of … or, shall I say at once, of nonsense. We must reduce our volume to the simple evangelists, select, even from them, the very words only of Jesus, paring off the amphibologisms into which they have been led, by forgetting often, or not understanding, what had fallen from him, by giving their own misconceptions as his dicta, and expressing unintelligibly for others what they had not understood themselves. There will be found remaining the most sublime and benevolent code of morals which has ever been offered to man. I have performed this operation for my own use, by cutting verse by verse out of the printed book, and arranging the matter which is evidently his, and which is as easily distinguishable as diamonds in a dunghill. The result is an octavo of forty-six pages, of pure and unsophisticated doctrines.[6] - Thomas Jefferson"

 
Of course I have gotten into arguments with good people who tell me God preserved his word perfectly and that there is no such corruption in the Bible, and my belief that there is comes from Satan and my lack of faith.

As for keeping it simple, it is one of the things I do like about the Mormon Faith. I think very much  they try to run the Church as the original Apostles did theirs. Except for the Temples, which you need a recommend as a member in good standing to enter,  Mormon meeting houses are very plain and not ornate. They are nice, clean, and well-kept but done frugally. . The Services and Sacrament are performed entirely  by the congregation. The Ward leadership's job consists mostly of picking people to speak and moving people from position to position.  Because callings change - including the ward leadership, no one stays in one position of power long enough to develop or solidify a power base from which they can influence or push for more power - at least not at the local level. Prayers tend to be short , begin with thanks for blessings ( friends, opportunity)  and then a few hopes ( keep us safe and give us a good time) and then end.  Because callings change, no one stays in one position of power long enough to develop or solidify a power base from which they can influence or push for power. .  They DO NOT pass a plate- as they don't believe tithing should be in the public eye. . You walk directly up to one of two people responsible for doing offerings (this too is a calling) ( who check each other), and hand it to them in an envelope. They do not ask for tax forms ( I have been in churches that do) so they don't actually know what 10% is or should be. I am told they don't scold if they think you are holding back ( but I am sure that would affect any requests for welfare should you need them. )  SO socially the system isn't perfect, but its far better at checking corruption than most I have seen.

I wouldn't say there was no man-made aggrandizement going on, and the adoration and  worship of the Prophet I saw  was real , no matter if he encourages  it or not,    but for a church that openly proclaims they have a prophet who serves as the mouthpiece of God on Earth (as the pope is supposed to )  i have seen surprisingly little evidence of it in the doctrines and covenants so far, and when its there its pretty darn mild.  One account I read suggested that the prohibition on tea, coffee and tobacco was largely a result of Joseph Smith's wife having to clean up the mess after meetings, so God just outlawed that.  (And its now taught as a general warning against addiction of any kind/keeping the body as a temple in honor of God)  And while opening up doctrine for change by church leaders is dangerous and a temptation to add in those Man Made items, it also allows the church to adapt and discard crap this isn't working ( like polygamy)   if used judiciously. I have run across surprisingly few things that really bother me, and their doctrine actually resolves a lot of the conflicts I have with other Christian faiths. (Original sin, The concept of Hell, Baptism must be performed on people of age to understand..)  They concentrate far more on the Garden of Gethsemane as the focal moment of Christ's life and not his suffering and resurrection on the cross, because that is where Christ himself really submitted to God's will- for us. They focus more on the decision and not on the act of carrying it out .. which I find ..interesting.

Quote
  For myself the whole God and science reconciliation thing will reveal itself in due time and it will be like "Yeah, cool", and it is going to be better than the Atheist viewpoint that well, something happened, this ooze met that ooze and "poof!" life and the universe just like happened, man...God had nothing to do with it".  Uhh huh, yeah...well, a wise wager would be on the side of God than not, right?  I mean if there isn't a God, no worse off, if there is and you bet against Him, well, now you're screwed!

I have had some spiritual experiences that have pretty much convinced me of the existence of -- something.  As an INTJ I am a planner, and its hard to not notice divine plans when they are laid out before you and you have walked along them far enough ..  SO I have faith that there is a plan, and some entity in charge of making it work.  There is simple too much evidence of design in the world for me to ignore..law of large numbers or no.

The "Learning or fun" reason for existence is consistent with what I have seen, and the "learning" has been consistent with what Jesus has taught in the Bible ( As I kid when I was in Sunday school, I found most of what they were teaching me obvious- OF course we need  to behave that way- How else would we ever be able to get along? But being good at it  is a lot easier when you are 5. )  So since I believe that there is a plan, and that God manipulates events such that the plan is carried out, I have no  conflict at all with Science. Science is automatically and instantly  invalidated in a situation with Miracles.  I think that the Universe is a clockwork - largely running on automatic,  for the purpose of training souls ( for whatever purpose they may be needed later) - but that doesn't preclude the clock-maker from touching, maintaining or altering the clockwork when it suits him.  ( I am suddenly reminded of  Snowpiercer (horrible premise - great movie) ) Perhaps people are also parts of the clock, or even God himself? Is Clockwork that requires God's periodic intervention to operate imperfect? Or was it designed that way to fulfill a need? )

 



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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2017, 10:02:46 AM »
  If you are comfortable in the church then that's what you need to do. If any out there aren't comfortable with the church you're in why go? Find what you're looking for.
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2017, 10:10:03 AM »
I'm not comfortable with LDS theology for myself, but I'm also not someone who think God gives a crap about theology. I believe the Bible is God's word, but I also believe He placed the compilation of it in the hands of mankind. It is a book, not God Himself. And it is not all-inclusive, because it cannot be. It includes what God needs us to understand about Him, and our relationship with Him. But it doesn't cover every aspect of an omnipotent God because it cannot.

Just by way of example, did Jesus and the Disciples laugh together when one of them ripped a fart? We cannot know because the Bible does not say. There are countless things the Bible does not say.
"A strict observance of the written laws is doubtless one of the high duties of a good citizen, but it is not the highest. The laws of necessity, of self-preservation, of saving our country when in danger, are of higher obligation. To lose our country by a scrupulous adherence to written law, would be to lose the law itself, with life, liberty, property and all those who are enjoying them with us; thus absurdly sacrificing the end to the means."

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #10 on: October 03, 2017, 04:56:31 PM »
  If you are comfortable in the church then that's what you need to do. If any out there aren't comfortable with the church you're in why go? Find what you're looking for.

I've never been comfortable with any church.  I have, in the past, been comfortable attending church and with the fellowship of other like minded individuals thereby attained.  I find going to church useful for myself, if for no other reason than it gets me to get outside of my  own head for 60 minutes a week and take stock of my blessings and (re)gain perspective on my place in the scheme of things. Its the lying and faking "belonging" that wears on me. It feels like I am pissing in their pool for my own benefit.

Its that whole "I have never fit anywhere and probably never will" thing. Not sure I know what I am looking for, and not sure it exists.  Haven't found it yet if it does. I tend to know truth when I see it, and  for me that is the IS, or God, or whatever.  I don't find it all in one place, and I don't think God ever meant is truth to be in one place.    My theology is a mishmash of perceived truths from Buddhism, Taoism, Christianity, various works of literature and plain old empirical personal experiences.  Its all consistent within the framework I have placed it in, but often is inconsistent with other frameworks established by the various sects and religions out there. The very idea of "the one true church"  gives me the willies. Maybe there is only one path to God, but if there is, then its because he wants it that way - and that's an awful, thought to me. If  you want more of your children to come home, you provide multiple paths. The idea that Jesus is the only way rubs me wrong for the same reason Socialism does - the idea that we are all the same and one size fits all. Jesus might be the best way. It seems to work for a lot of people, and the social and moral teachings of Jesus feature prominently in my constellation of thought, but the deep magic of salvation , of blood sacrifice to redeem souls, has never rung true to me. In my warped world I wonder if  Jesus' visit may be more about God being one of us long enough to understand how weak we are, and thus finding it within himself to forgive us - thus making salvation possible. (Blasphemy !?! probably..)  I don't discount the idea that God  could be  as much a part of his creation as we are. He can be changing and remain unchanging - because change requires time, and part of God ( Jesus ) could exist in time, and another part (the Father) be entirely outside it perceiving all of human history and time as a solid, unchanging object (or one constantly in flux, or one what sees all of the possibilities of a multiverse unfold at once)  I guess I took Richard Bach's Illusions warning to heart. "The original Sin is to Limit the IS. Don't."

Is  there a plan in place to redeem Satan or his minions? Maybe, like Jesus , they must volunteer to be reduced to flesh and blood beings and suffer the humiliation of being human ?  Maybe they must sacrifice themselves for others  as he did in order to wash their own sins away? And if that were true, do we know any fallen angels?  Could they have to walk one of the different paths I suspect exist since redemption through Jesus is closed to them?

It should be obvious now why I don't fit in- because I feel obligated to question-and  when God wants me to know, he'll tell me. I'll just know. As i Just knew about my wife. As I just knew about other important decisions in my life. And maybe that tumbler will fall into place and suddenly I'll just know I should join the Mormon church(or something else)  and have faith in its teachings.  But it hasn't yet. And  in the meantime,  I am faced with needing a clan. Belonging seems like it might be a nice way to be at some point.

I would welcome others observations about such things, and how they reconcile personal understanding with the dogma and expectations  of those they share a church structure with.


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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2017, 05:13:14 PM »
  I believe in God the church is a whole nother story.   As long as I'm good with God  the church can KMA.   Churches in my eyes are a business.   The bigger the building the better business is.
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2017, 07:06:35 AM »
I agree John, it all starts with the person...it's the way it was started with Jesus and the Disciples...casual gatherings and a simple message of salvation through Jesus...humans always muck things up with bureaucracy and form and catering to the physical and emotional instead of the spiritual...
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2017, 08:02:52 AM »
I agree John, it all starts with the person...it's the way it was started with Jesus and the Disciples...casual gatherings and a simple message of salvation through Jesus...humans always muck things up with bureaucracy and form and catering to the physical and emotional instead of the spiritual...

In this case, its that organization that we will need.   Such organizations will become part of the redoubt when things get nasty. That is why the left has been so hell bent on infiltrating and destroying any institution that could serve in that capacity.  That is why they are running the Catholic Church through a Pope that got is position in a way that is just as dubious as the passing of Obamacare. The showdown is coming - and it is worldwide. Worldwide personal  networks will be required to win. Strong local personal networks will be required to survive.  I am just trying to reconcile liking the people and culture  and mostly liking how the organization works with dogma I can't can't swallow. ( But I can't swallow it at any Church really)

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2017, 12:29:19 PM »
I agree John, it all starts with the person...it's the way it was started with Jesus and the Disciples...casual gatherings and a simple message of salvation through Jesus...humans always muck things up with bureaucracy and form and catering to the physical and emotional instead of the spiritual...

In this case, its that organization that we will need.   Such organizations will become part of the redoubt when things get nasty. That is why the left has been so hell bent on infiltrating and destroying any institution that could serve in that capacity.  That is why they are running the Catholic Church through a Pope that got is position in a way that is just as dubious as the passing of Obamacare. The showdown is coming - and it is worldwide. Worldwide personal  networks will be required to win. Strong local personal networks will be required to survive.  I am just trying to reconcile liking the people and culture  and mostly liking how the organization works with dogma I can't can't swallow. ( But I can't swallow it at any Church really)

You don't need to join an organized religion...to be organized against the proglodytes and their fascist masters...you just need to have affiliation with like-minded individuals.

With me there is a lot of genetic predisposition to overcome to join anything...

I loath being dependent upon anybody, though at times it is necessary...

I suck at delegating...

I get along with most people, but stupid people, ignorant people...I want to strangle with my bare hands...the larger the organization or the flakier it is...the odds of encountering people I loath increases exponentially...

Organizations tend to have requirements and rules and can have inconsistencies...I despise bureaucracy...

Joining an outfit, to me should have one or very few keystone principles and purpose - Like a military cadre dedicated to eradicating tyrants and their minions from the face of the earth...no micro-managing, no stupid-ass rules (it's war jackass, not checkers!)...just goals and meeting those goals is all I care about.

Organizations...governments...I am loosing interest in all of that crap...

Irrumabo!  GOP? - Nope. No more. They made their bed, now let them die in it.*
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2017, 05:40:18 PM »
I agree John, it all starts with the person...it's the way it was started with Jesus and the Disciples...casual gatherings and a simple message of salvation through Jesus...humans always muck things up with bureaucracy and form and catering to the physical and emotional instead of the spiritual...

In this case, its that organization that we will need.   Such organizations will become part of the redoubt when things get nasty. That is why the left has been so hell bent on infiltrating and destroying any institution that could serve in that capacity.  That is why they are running the Catholic Church through a Pope that got is position in a way that is just as dubious as the passing of Obamacare. The showdown is coming - and it is worldwide. Worldwide personal  networks will be required to win. Strong local personal networks will be required to survive.  I am just trying to reconcile liking the people and culture  and mostly liking how the organization works with dogma I can't can't swallow. ( But I can't swallow it at any Church really)

You don't need to join an organized religion...to be organized against the proglodytes and their fascist masters...you just need to have affiliation with like-minded individuals.

With me there is a lot of genetic predisposition to overcome to join anything...

I loath being dependent upon anybody, though at times it is necessary...

I suck at delegating...

I get along with most people, but stupid people, ignorant people...I want to strangle with my bare hands...the larger the organization or the flakier it is...the odds of encountering people I loath increases exponentially...

Organizations tend to have requirements and rules and can have inconsistencies...I despise bureaucracy...

Joining an outfit, to me should have one or very few keystone principles and purpose - Like a military cadre dedicated to eradicating tyrants and their minions from the face of the earth...no micro-managing, no stupid-ass rules (it's war jackass, not checkers!)...just goals and meeting those goals is all I care about.

Organizations...governments...I am loosing interest in all of that crap...

  " I would never join a club that would have me as a member".
All men are created equal"
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #16 on: October 04, 2017, 06:49:29 PM »
Okay, Groucho.
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #17 on: October 04, 2017, 06:55:11 PM »
All men are created equal"
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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #18 on: October 05, 2017, 07:18:06 AM »
"I resemble that remark."

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Re: Mormons and the LDS Church
« Reply #19 on: October 05, 2017, 11:11:37 AM »
  The problem with clubs is that I don't get to pick out the member and some people are so nice it's sickening.

A must watch!

https://youtu.be/86hwvNWwSL4
All men are created equal"
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