Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

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daniel
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Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by daniel » 24 Feb 2009, 12:54

Just for fun, I've compiled a list of some Mormon Conundrums. If you have any comments to make on any of them... keep your viewpoint down to a sentence. I thought this would be a fun way to get a quick census of how the people on this board feel about these different subjects. Ok go!

Blacks
Polygamy
The means of translating the BOM
The 3 witnesses
The 8 witnesses
The Pearl of Great Price (that's a BIG one)
Brigham Young
The Blood Doctrine
DNA evidence not aligned with BOM
re-baptism
Homosexuals
Masonry similarities to the Temple
The fact that prophets no longer testify of actually talking/seeing/speaking with God
Adam-God Theory
Mountain Meadows
Secret Tunnels
Dannites
Lafferty Brothers
White Salamander
The Wave Stone
The Sword of Laban
Mummies
Parchment
Dolemite
Zelf
Cain
Three Nephites
John the Beloved
Jackson County
Destruction of The Nauvoo Expositor
Kirtland Financial Crisis
Spiritual Eyes vs. Actual Vision
Different Accounts of the First Vision
The "real" origin of The Word of Wisdom
Quakers on the Moon
The lost 116 pages
Solomon Spaulding
Philastus Hurlbut

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hawkgrrrl
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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by hawkgrrrl » 24 Feb 2009, 13:19

This is like one of those facebook lists:

Blacks. Bigoted humans
Polygamy. Confusion over sealing ordinance (JS) + sexism and isolation (BY). But jury's still out for me.
The means of translating the BOM. Strange process, but JS clearly believed it. Else, what was in the box?
The 3 witnesses. Spiritual witness is okay with me. I love OC.
The 8 witnesses. Like a family reunion.
The Pearl of Great Price (that's a BIG one). Book of Moses works for me. Facsimiles = debunked wishful thinking; astronomy section of Abraham = incomprehensible.
Brigham Young. Not a fan, although I see how he accomplished a difficult task.
The Blood Doctrine. Ignorance + isolation = scary people.
DNA evidence not aligned with BOM. I don't believe in a global theory anyway, so it's unfalsifiable IMO.
re-baptism. ?
Homosexuals. The church needs to be above reproach on compassion. As to legal issues, let the people and/or the courts decide.
Masonry similarities to the Temple. Clearly Masonic influence; JS used their symbols to express Christian covenants in a new way.
The fact that prophets no longer testify of actually talking/seeing/speaking with God. I don't know that they ever said things like that openly. JS never "testified" of First Vision; it was recorded much much later.
Adam-God Theory. Who knows, who cares? I'm not sold on this one.
Mountain Meadows. BY allowed it; he could pretty much do whatever he wanted.
Secret Tunnels. Under the temple? I thought for security.
Dannites. See Blood Doctrine.
Lafferty Brothers. See Blood Doctrine.
White Salamander. Believers are always prone to wishful thinking.
The Wave Stone. ?
The Sword of Laban. Nephi cutting off head of Laban is troubling. Or did you mean, where is it?
Mummies. ?
Parchment. ?
Dolemite. ? The blaxploitation film?
Zelf. "Zelph" seems like wishful thinking on the part of JS and early members.
Cain. Seems like literalist believers seeking proof of their otherworldly view.
Three Nephites. See Cain.
John the Beloved. See Cain. Although, my mom swears she met him. Really.
Jackson County. Not appealing.
Destruction of The Nauvoo Expositor. Led to JS's martyrdom. Done to hide polygamy. He was probably doomed either way.
Kirtland Financial Crisis. Would you trust any of these guys with your money? They were hardly bankers, and some literally took the money and ran.
Spiritual Eyes vs. Actual Vision. We're talking about spiritual stuff; I think visions are like that.
Different Accounts of the First Vision. Not a biggie for me. I'm not sure I think it was a visit vs. a vision anyway.
The "real" origin of The Word of Wisdom. Certainly "not by way of commandment," now more of a cultural marker.
Quakers on the Moon. BY sounded like a raving loony; obviously, he wasn't more educated than others of his era.
The lost 116 pages. MH's wife was very hostile. Not very smart to give them to MH.
Solomon Spaulding. Not very convincing theory.
Philastus Hurlbut. Clearly biased.

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Brian Johnston
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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by Brian Johnston » 24 Feb 2009, 14:46

Blacks - the philosophies of men mingled with scripture, a lesser-acknowledged masonic influence intruded into mormonism.

Polygamy - tough topic. There it is in the Old Testament. Poorly executed by JS/BY even if it was supposed to be restored at all. I'll pass on that one.

The means of translating the BOM - Urim & Thumim sounds like better "PR" than a peepstone. Would it be more wierd if a burning bush wrote it?

The 3 witnesses - the full stories sound like visions and not visitations.

The 8 witnesses - it is kind of like Coca-Cola executives testifying that their soda is the true cola beverage

The Pearl of Great Price (that's a BIG one) - largely misunderstood by our own Church

Brigham Young - Fearless, for better and for worse. You just never know what would come out of his mouth next...

The Blood Doctrine - A theoretical jesture of repentence if decided by free will, no point if imposed on someone by force, bad idea either way. [edit: ooops, I read it as Blood Atonement, must have been tired]

DNA evidence not aligned with BOM - It is a similar problem as evolution. Important to some people who need science for their religion.

re-baptism - ? It is a symbol of joining the Church.

Homosexuals - Only God really knows and can judge, very gray area to me. I believe God loves everyone and accepts them as they are.

Masonry similarities to the Temple - I really have no problem with this at all, but I also don't have a literal view of the temple.

The fact that prophets no longer testify of actually talking/seeing/speaking with God - too bad for them, I still do.

Adam-God Theory - One of many ideas that didn't stand the test of time.

Mountain Meadows - no excuse. people pushed to the limit making bad bad bad decisions. I don't think it was ordered by BY, but he covered it up.

Secret Tunnels - ? I've been to the ones between North and South Korea :-)

Dannites - They all needed a little bracelet with "WWJD" on it to remind them of the whole point -- What would Jesus Do? Probably not that!

Lafferty Brothers - ? Were these the killers in Under The Banner of Heaven by Krakauer? I hated that book, but not for the Church history in it.

White Salamander - The story itself or the fraud related to it? Folk magic was a real part of their world back then. Why was it believable :-)

The Wave Stone - ?

The Sword of Laban - ? Nephi Story or some modern story of having this artifact?

Mummies - Was all the craze in the 1800's

Parchment - ? Is this about the Book of Abraham source materials? See Pearl of Great Price answer.

Dolemite - ? I tried to google Dolemite+LDS and didn't see anything of note.

Zelf - Zelph. Once JS had the story in his mind, everything became evidence. I don't think that is so out of the ordinary. We all do it.

Cain - ? Not sure what to say. I am not sure the Bible is literal either. Not clear on the question here. I think the Mark of Cain is a cross, long story.

Three Nephites - Every culture has their supernatural stories

John the Beloved - see Three Nephites

Jackson County - Hard to tell how much the Church still hangs on to that Zion = Jackson County idea anymore, now that we are going world-wide.

Destruction of The Nauvoo Expositor - ooooooh *cringe* That was a really bad idea... That was the day JS signed his death sentence.

Kirtland Financial Crisis - Please don't let religious people run a bank. Please don't let corporate executives run a religion (speaking of today).

Spiritual Eyes vs. Actual Vision - This makes perfect sense to me.

Different Accounts of the First Vision - I think the earlier accounts were most accurate. Doesn't really bother me. The story gained meaning over time.

The "real" origin of The Word of Wisdom - This is one of my hardest topics to reconcile and be orthodox.

Quakers on the Moon - The reason 1969 was faked :-). Quakers would have shot down Apollo 11 with their Friendship Lazer Beams

The lost 116 pages - I'm just not that attached to the BofM being historical. Will we ever know? Might be cool if they were found someday. Stranger things have happened (BofA parchments).

Solomon Spaulding - I think literary analysis and trying to find correlations is not that much of a smoking gun.

Philastus Hurlbut - It sounds like a name Beavis and Butthead would laugh endlessly about.
"It's strange to be here. The mystery never leaves you alone." -John O'Donohue, Anam Cara, speaking of experiencing life.

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Brian Johnston
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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by Brian Johnston » 24 Feb 2009, 14:48

[Moderator Note:]This thread is fine as long as it pretty much stays to the format of one-sentence answers. Individual topics should be a separate thread if someone wants to talk about them in detail. Otherwise, this will turn into a big mess.
"It's strange to be here. The mystery never leaves you alone." -John O'Donohue, Anam Cara, speaking of experiencing life.

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Tom Haws
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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by Tom Haws » 26 Feb 2009, 13:32

Very good thread:

Blacks When will our lessons discuss Elijah Abel, Brigham Young, and David O. McKay on the same page with Spencer W. Kimball?
Polygamy Lying for the Lord--shudder!
The means of translating the BOM Why can't we tell good history?
The 3 witnesses Whitmer and Cowdery compel me to take pause.
The 8 witnesses Could Joseph Smith have been THAT charismatic?
The Pearl of Great Price (that's a BIG one) Good parts; bad parts. Abraham facsimile 2 (circle) is sheer fakery.
Brigham Young My brother, not my teacher.
The Blood Doctrine We don't believe it so much anymore, but still some.
DNA evidence not aligned with BOM The Book of Mormon isn't a proof text for me either way.
re-baptism Can you tell us more?
Homosexuals Our marriage doctrine is getting us into trouble again.
Masonry similarities to the Temple If we told good history, this wouldn't be an issue.
The fact that prophets no longer testify of actually talking/seeing/speaking with God I do. Ditto Valoel.
Adam-God Theory Doesn't matter to me.
Mountain Meadows BY regretted it, but covered it up, and it still stains our culture.
Secret Tunnels Can you tell us more?
Dannites Now that I know there's no perfect church, this doesn't surprise me, but why can't we tell the truth?
Lafferty Brothers Why can't we see the dark part of ourselves in them?
White Salamander Why does history have to be under corporate control? Let's the academics duke it out and live the Sermon on the Mount.
The Wave Stone Can you tell us more?
The Sword of Laban Terrible story of origin. Can you tell us more?
Mummies Can you tell us more?
Parchment Facsimile 2 fakery is too obvious to pretend about.
Dolemite Can you tell us more?
Zelph What Valoel said: "Once JS had the story in his mind, everything became evidence. I don't think that is so out of the ordinary. We all do it."
Cain It would be nice if we told about all those old legends and could conceive of our religion as maturing instead of supposedly cut perfect out of the mountain.
Three Nephites I really like that story. Would I rather minister forever than go speedily to heaven?
John the Beloved There is more going on around us than meets the eye. Reverence and respect are in order.
Jackson County Interesting. But not as interesting as the Golden Rule.
Destruction of The Nauvoo Expositor Ooooh. Bad. Very bad. This unaccountability to the highest sensibilities of the culture is a persistent blind spot.
Kirtland Financial Crisis Did Joseph really pad safe deposit boxes with rocks? I'd like to know more, but don't really want to delve into the muck.
Spiritual Eyes vs. Actual Vision Beautiful description of mysticism. Which is more real?
Different Accounts of the First Vision Earlier is better in this case. A flexible view is good.
The "real" origin of The Word of Wisdom I like it regardless of it's origin. Same goes for any good quote, sermon, or teaching. Origin matters nothing.
Quakers on the Moon He was weird. So am I.
The lost 116 pages Great mystery. Doesn't matter to my religion.
Solomon Spaulding So, how about them Plain and Precious truths of the Gospel of the Lamb--non-resistance, non-possession, non-judgment, etc.?
Philastus Hurlbut So, what's for lunch?
Tom (aka Justin Martyr/Justin Morning/Jacob Marley/Kupord Maizzed)
Higley and Guadalupe
Gilbert, Arizona
----
Sure, any religion would do. But I'm LDS.
"There are no academic issues. Everything is emotional to somebody." Ray Degraw at www.StayLDS.com

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hawkgrrrl
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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by hawkgrrrl » 26 Feb 2009, 14:44

Tom - I really liked this:
The 3 witnesses Whitmer and Cowdery compel me to take pause.
The 8 witnesses Could Joseph Smith have been THAT charismatic?

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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by Curt Sunshine » 26 Feb 2009, 14:49

Blacks: Children of God no different than the rest of us. Always has been; always will be.

Polygamy: Conflicted - truly and deeply conflicted.

The means of translating the BOM: Some hear music; some see narrations. I actually like the hat version, since it fits "the gift and power of God" most totally.

The 3 witnesses: Simply fascinating.

The 8 witnesses: At least nobody can say there weren't plates of some sort without some serious 'splainin'.

The Pearl of Great Price (that's a BIG one): LOVE it as inspired mythology (true or false), even if I don't believe it was an actual (literal) translation of text.

Brigham Young: Wonderfully complex man - probably the only person alive who could have kept the Church together in such hellish times. Gotta take the bad with the good.

The Blood Doctrine: "Believing blood"? If so, no thanks - although I am puzzled why some accept and believe and others don't.

DNA evidence not aligned with BOM: Personally, I think the recent DNA evidence IS aligned with what the BofM actually says about the populations it describes; I just think it refutes the incorrect assumptions of our fathers. (Maybe I will post on that at some point.)

re-baptism: No problem for excommunicated members; glad we no longer do it as a sign of re-commitment.

Homosexuals: Children of God no different than the rest of us. Always has been; always will be.

Masonry similarities to the Temple: No big deal.

The fact that prophets no longer testify of actually talking/seeing/speaking with God: They do more often than we realize - just not in the same "thus saith the Lord when he appeared to me" way. (Actually, VERY few of our modern prophets AND ancient prophets testified of what this statement implies.)

Adam-God Theory: Nah.

Mountain Meadows: Tragic; not ordered by SLC; definitely covered up; current criticism is stupid, by and large.

Secret Tunnels: Absolutely hilarious.

Dannites: Not good; not good at all.

Lafferty Brothers: Yawn, but I do agree they are a good example of what many have the potential to become.

White Salamander: Fascinating study of human nature.

The Wave Stone: Honestly doesn't register on my interest scale.

The Sword of Laban: Really don't care one way or the other. No more difficult to accept than anything else.

Mummies: Brendon Frasier

Parchment: No real reaction.

Dolemite: See "The Wave Stone"

Zelf: Funny fascination.

Cain: Come' on, Dude, you just don't talk to the Lord like that!

Three Nephites: Cool mythology.

John the Beloved: Tired of the homosexual and Mary Magdalene theories. Love his Gospel.

Jackson County: Yawn.

Destruction of The Nauvoo Expositor: MAJOR mistake, even if believed sincerely to be technically legal.

Kirtland Financial Crisis: Probably unavoidable, even if people had followed Joseph's counsel to not speculate in land.

Spiritual Eyes vs. Actual Vision: Love the concept.

Different Accounts of the First Vision: I do it all the time (highlight and emphasize and mention different things) when I recount my own long-past experiences.

The "real" origin of The Word of Wisdom: Probably a combination of accepted story and culture of the time. No big deal.

Quakers on the Moon: There are some powerful hallucinagenics in the Utah desert.

The lost 116 pages: A REALLY good morality tale about prayer and insisting on getting your own way.

Solomon Spaulding: Just die, already. The necessary connections are as likely as the idea of Quakers on the moon.

Philastus Hurlbut: String all of the responses thus far together. That's my response.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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HiJolly
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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by HiJolly » 28 Feb 2009, 09:57

Blacks --
What a tragedy of the mores of the day.

Polygamy --
true principle. But if a spaghetti noodle is 'true', it still doesn't make a good arrow.

The means of translating the BOM --
beyond any worldly description, but nevertheless real.

The 3 witnesses --
divine (or, spiritual) witness

The 8 witnesses --
worldly (or, physical) witness

The Pearl of Great Price (that's a BIG one) --
revelation by any other name is still revelation.

Brigham Young --
Good man who built the institution of the Church as he should have (mostly). Not like Joseph, & he knew it.

The Blood Doctrine --
One man's interpretation. Limited by worldview.

DNA evidence not aligned with BOM --
DNA is indeed alligned but we (past AND present) assume too much, on both sides.

re-baptism --
good idea for some. Not needed for most.

Homosexuals --
Chastity applies to everyone. Not everyone has the same trials in life. Hell of a trial. Worse than being born w/o legs? Maybe.

Masonry similarities to the Temple --
Cool and reasonable. Again, too many people assume too much.

The fact that prophets no longer testify of actually talking/seeing/speaking with God --
wearing spiritual experiences on our sleeves is not the LDS way. Anymore.

Adam-God Theory --
true but only within a VERY limited kabbalistic context. Adam Kadmon is what Joseph was referring to.

Mountain Meadows --
tragic result of high emotions and mass hysteria. Haight should've been executed.

Secret Tunnels --
been in them. watch out for fast-moving electric carts. GA's, Tab Choir, etc. use for egress and ingress.

Dannites --
Stupid, stupid man. Not approved by Joseph except through silence. Stupid on them both.

Lafferty Brothers --
balance in all things. Covenants ARE important. So is Love.

White Salamander --
Magic truly had a role in the life of Joseph. It's ok. I'm learning to make it a small part of my life.

The Wave Stone --
Never heard of it. That's amazing to me. So.... ????? Somebody spill the beans!

The Sword of Laban --
handle, blade... Maybe it survived, i dunno.

Mummies --
don't breathe deeply around them.

Parchment --
lots of 'em of varying sizes & descriptions, at first. We probably have less than 10% of what they originally had.

Dolemite --
Joseph as a pimp? I don't think so.

Zelf --
Interesting. Maybe fluff, maybe not. Puzzling. He and the next four dudes may be literal or not.

Cain --
he's dead.

Three Nephites --
they're not dead.

John the Beloved --
not dead. Almost certainly literal.

Jackson County --
political mire. Yech. Saints were too elitist and it messed up everything, Kirtland, here and Nauvoo.

Destruction of The Nauvoo Expositor --
bad idea. I could see where JS felt it was a practical solution to a bad situation.

Kirtland Financial Crisis --
The economy and greedy people screwed JS & the Church. JS probably shouldn't have pressed the "anti-bank" issue of currency.

Spiritual Eyes vs. Actual Vision --
same difference. both real enough. "it's all in your head" is a cop out.

Different Accounts of the First Vision --
blind gurus & the elephant. Good stuff, more views the better.

The "real" origin of The Word of Wisdom --
?? A p.o.'d wife? Wherever it came from, it's good advice.

Quakers on the Moon --
19th century world-view. it happens.

The lost 116 pages --
real. bummer.

Solomon Spaulding --
dude doesn't deserve all the notoriety he's gotten over the years.

Philastus Hurlbut --
unhappy dude that never turned the corner into happiness.


HiJolly
Men are not moved by events but by their interpretations.
-- The Stoic Epictetus

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Brian Johnston
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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by Brian Johnston » 01 Mar 2009, 15:39

so Daniel, haven't seen your answers to the questions yet :)
"It's strange to be here. The mystery never leaves you alone." -John O'Donohue, Anam Cara, speaking of experiencing life.

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Re: Historic Mormon Conundrums - one sentence thoughts.

Post by zebedee » 02 Mar 2009, 05:18

This is cool! - Here goes, might be my last post after some of the answers....

Blacks - Not sure things have changed enough, still in progress.
Polygamy - Works for me wish we did it.
The means of translating the BOM - Gift and power of God, no more or less.
The 3 witnesses - Not surprised, who else would Satan target?
The 8 witnesses - Ditto.
The Pearl of Great Price (that's a BIG one) - It is what it says it is.
Brigham Young - A real Prophet, saved the church.
The Blood Doctrine - Not sure this ever really gelled so I don't know if it is/was a doctrine anyway.
DNA evidence not aligned with BOM - Give me studies that don't have an axe to grind.....
re-baptism - Tragic that we don't do it more often, should be allowed.
Homosexuals - ALL have sinned and fallen short, should be dealt with like any other chronically sinful behavior, like mine...
Masonry similarities to the Temple - Masonry is the counterfeit.
The fact that prophets no longer testify of actually talking/seeing/speaking with God - I don't think God feels like talking to us as much as he used to
Adam-God Theory - Theory - this is one of the truest things ever taught, why the fuss?
Mountain Meadows - Be grateful we have modern communication.
Secret Tunnels - Must be really secret as I never heard of them.
Dannites - JS made a mistake ignoring this Praetorian Guard, they might have killed HIM eventually.
Lafferty Brothers - Natural born killers who found their rationale.
White Salamander - Do they exist in nature?
The Wave Stone - They're always after me lucky charms....
The Sword of Laban - I am glad it is gone as it would have ended up over some rich Zoramite's fireplace in SLC.
Mummies - The GA's do the best they can to look young on TV :oops:
Parchment - I think we mean papyrus?
Dolemite - Hate the game, not the Playah.
Zelf - Alf's father.
Cain - The epitome of the natural man.
Three Nephites - Hope I get to see them.
John the Beloved - Ditto.
Jackson County - Beatuiful Zion, built above....
Destruction of The Nauvoo Expositor - If it wasn't that it would have been something else, too cowardly to put a bullet in the Prophet, so....
Kirtland Financial Crisis - The Church needs to re-examine this as part of a real reckoning of how we get and use money, how beholden we are to our enemies, and how deep in Babylon's pocket we might have sunk.
Spiritual Eyes vs. Actual Vision - Hard to tell the difference - 2 Corinthians 12:2
Different Accounts of the First Vision - Like the facets on a diamond.
The "real" origin of The Word of Wisdom - No revelation is an answer looking for a question.
Quakers on the Moon - I have a testimony that things like this and Zelph were Joseph' tongue-in-cheek sense of humor at work.
The lost 116 pages - "Now that's a fire!"
Solomon Spaulding - I prefer JF Cooper.
Philastus Hurlbut - Doctor was his real first name, a great way to save money on grad school.

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