What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

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DarkJedi
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by DarkJedi » 04 Apr 2017, 03:14

Reuben wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 02:12
dande48 wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 19:57
I'm not sure which studies are being referred to, but I read a couple done by Dr. Robert Caldini that were along the same lines. The conclusion was, the more you commit to and sacrifice for a group, the stronger your commitment will be, and the harder it will be to break away. With the Church, didn't any of you go the process of thinking, "I've given up so much for the Church. It HAS to be TRUE!"
Honestly, no. I thought, "I've given up so much. Surely that merits a little help!"

My mind seems to not regard my past or future actions much when determining truth. That might be me internalizing lessons from utility theory, where it's suboptimal to do so, or I might just be wired that way, or both. In any case, I seem to be one of those for whom obedience for it's own sake is less effective.

That's not to say it's ineffective. Not drinking alcohol has certainly kept me a little more isolated since I graduated and moved out of Utah. Not drinking coffee has certainly made me stand out since moving to Europe.
I'm also a no, and had a similar thought to Reuben, along with the thought that I had wasted a good part of my life in "sacrificing" and giving to the church.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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nibbler
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by nibbler » 04 Apr 2017, 04:46

Heber13 wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 13:05
Didn't those studies show that there is a point where requiring more and requiring more eventually loses a certain group, while strengthening a group? It doesn't strengthen everyone equally.

At some point...doing things just to require sacrifice wears off, and there is a correction or response.
There's a quote I've seen floating around the internets. "Never push a loyal person to the point where they no longer care." I think there's a goodly percentage of people that go inactive because they burn out from all the commitments. I believe we call these members "lazy" once they get out of earshot. :P

I'm a strange one in that the WoW was one of the things that attracted me to the church. It wasn't much of a sacrifice in that regard. The only thing I had to give up was tea, but tea wasn't a habit for me, though I understand it can be habit forming.

I've got a different perspective now. I'm sacrificing a moderation in all things approach. I'd probably have a glass of wine with my cheeseburger once a month. I might hold my nose and drink coffee once in a while thinking it may reduce my chances at developing mental impairments in my dotage. I might develop a "big deal" attitude towards tea. That's about the extent of it.

So I think the rules could stand a little relaxing, I'd promise not to spike the pitchers of water that are served at our activities with tea bags... I get that these things have become a part of the cultural identity.
The time to relax is when you don't have time for it. - Sydney J. Harris

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DevilsAdvocate
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by DevilsAdvocate » 04 Apr 2017, 06:59

hawkgrrrl wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 12:59
Ray DeGraw wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 09:35
As a first step, I would like to see it removed from the requirements for baptism (and, ideally, Priesthood ordination) and kept only as a temple requirement.

That would solve so many problems, particularly with missionary work.
That's a sensible solution. It'll never fly, Orville! There have been studies that show that the more you require of people in a religion, the better your retention. The problem is that maybe that's not going to be true forever. This current generation really challenges things in a new way. I'm not sure they will keep getting the same results from that strategy. Plus, there's something to be said for the fact that WoW was always supposed to be a guideline.

I remember reading something along these lines a while ago but I thought they were mostly talking about new and relatively small fringe groups, not large mainstream religious groups with millions of followers. Basically they were trying to determine what the differences were between these small groups that didn't survive very long at all and those that did and found that the ones that survived longer generally demanded costly sacrifices which apparently had the effect of amping up the level of commitment to the group enough to prevent too many of them from abandoning it. Well if we look at a group like the Amish it certainly makes sense why they would need followers that are very committed to this lifestyle because otherwise the group probably wouldn't have lasted as well as it has for as long as it has so far but would instead likely be quickly assimilated into the mainstream culture. But that doesn't mean that this level of commitment and differences from the outside world will ever appeal to nearly as many people that weren't raised in this environment as more popular religious groups.

And if the WoW was really that much of a magical secret of success the Church has stumbled onto then I would have expected them to gain more ground compared to the Baptists, Methodists, Lutherans, Presbyterians, etc. by now than they have so far due to LDS families having more children than average and so many full-time missionaries actively trying to recruit new followers for so long. In reality the Church doesn't retain members all that well in the first place, and especially not in the case of new converts and for all we really know the WoW could easily be preventing just as many if not more people from joining and/or staying as it helps attract and retain. Also I doubt Church leaders are even aware of some of the possible mind tricks like the sunk cost fallacy and if they were my guess is that they would feel embarrassed about this and try to rationalize that Muslims don't drink or eat pork, Jews traditionally don't eat pork, etc. to try to tell themselves this isn't that unusual rather than thinking this is a very good reason to justify the WoW by itself. In theory the Church believes in free will (moral agency) and that life is a test; well it's not really much of a test or choice worth celebrating if people are being tricked into strict compliance somehow.
Last edited by DevilsAdvocate on 04 Apr 2017, 08:34, edited 2 times in total.
"Truth is what works." - William James

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dande48
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by dande48 » 04 Apr 2017, 07:33

DarkJedi wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 03:14
Reuben wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 02:12
dande48 wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 19:57
I'm not sure which studies are being referred to, but I read a couple done by Dr. Robert Caldini that were along the same lines. The conclusion was, the more you commit to and sacrifice for a group, the stronger your commitment will be, and the harder it will be to break away. With the Church, didn't any of you go the process of thinking, "I've given up so much for the Church. It HAS to be TRUE!"
Honestly, no. I thought, "I've given up so much. Surely that merits a little help!"

My mind seems to not regard my past or future actions much when determining truth. That might be me internalizing lessons from utility theory, where it's suboptimal to do so, or I might just be wired that way, or both. In any case, I seem to be one of those for whom obedience for it's own sake is less effective.

That's not to say it's ineffective. Not drinking alcohol has certainly kept me a little more isolated since I graduated and moved out of Utah. Not drinking coffee has certainly made me stand out since moving to Europe.
I'm also a no, and had a similar thought to Reuben, along with the thought that I had wasted a good part of my life in "sacrificing" and giving to the church.
But before that. Before the big realization, "I've commited so much, and got nothing back", came for me, "I've committed so much, I really want this to be true." Maybe that's just me; we've all had a lifetime of different experiences. But haven't you ever come across that couple, where one spouse is OBVIOUSLY sleeping around, and everyone knows it EXCEPT the other spouse, who will use any irrational explaination to get around it? That's what it felt like for me, with the Church. Because of the huge sacrifice of money, of time, of serving a mission... I was willing to buy any excuse that popped into my head! Now, the truth seems much more obvious.

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DarkJedi
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by DarkJedi » 04 Apr 2017, 09:42

You're not alone, Dande, I do know others have felt that way. But not all of us. That's one of the great lessons I've learned here - all of our experiences and our interpretation of those experiences are very different. We are all together on the path, yet we're also all alone.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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Heber13
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by Heber13 » 04 Apr 2017, 10:17

nibbler wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 04:46
So I think the rules could stand a little relaxing, I'd promise not to spike the pitchers of water that are served at our activities with tea bags... I get that these things have become a part of the cultural identity.
I honestly believe the "little relaxing" was done when they let go of soda to focus on gospel principle being taught and not tighten things or make it more harsh...such as energy drinks or all other forms of caffeine. They simply didn't go there, and won't, because it really loses the importance of the principle.

So...they've already done some relaxing. And it was just fine. Soda went away quietly without debate or loss of commitment.

Tea would do the same. No one would lost faith in a prophet or start picketing that the church is getting weak. Especially if done with the right message that as a global church, tea is important to some cultures and not the focus of the law. Then they could refocus in on the importance of D&C 89.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

ydeve
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by ydeve » 04 Apr 2017, 12:46

dande48 wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 19:57
I'm not sure which studies are being referred to, but I read a couple done by Dr. Robert Caldini that were along the same lines. The conclusion was, the more you commit to and sacrifice for a group, the stronger your commitment will be, and the harder it will be to break away. With the Church, didn't any of you go the process of thinking, "I've given up so much for the Church. It HAS to be TRUE!"
People experience sunk cost bias. If you don't account for it it can heavily sway decision making.

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hawkgrrrl
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by hawkgrrrl » 04 Apr 2017, 16:21

ydeve wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 12:46
dande48 wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 19:57
I'm not sure which studies are being referred to, but I read a couple done by Dr. Robert Caldini that were along the same lines. The conclusion was, the more you commit to and sacrifice for a group, the stronger your commitment will be, and the harder it will be to break away. With the Church, didn't any of you go the process of thinking, "I've given up so much for the Church. It HAS to be TRUE!"
People experience sunk cost bias. If you don't account for it it can heavily sway decision making.
Bingo! And as Mormons, we've got a LOT of sunk costs, both literal and figurative.

NightSG
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by NightSG » 06 Apr 2017, 08:20

On Own Now wrote:
03 Apr 2017, 09:23
I would love for the Church to change the WoW to the following:

- no tobacco/alcohol in Church
- no getting drunk
- no getting high
Sounds reasonable to me; aside from occasionally forgetting to put one out until I was in the lot, I never smoked on Church property at all. As for drinking, I completely quit for almost 5 years because I have problems with getting drunk, but then went back to my two drinks in an hour or three in an evening limit, with a few trusted friends on "help me make sure" duty and certainly don't feel any less righteous for it.

NightSG
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Re: What are the chances the WoW will change soon?

Post by NightSG » 06 Apr 2017, 08:28

Reuben wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 02:12
Honestly, no. I thought, "I've given up so much. Surely that merits a little help!"
This. And after all the people I'd helped move, I ended up calling in Methodists to move my big furniture, because all the Mormons with trucks (most of the ward, actually, including the women, given that it's an agricultural area of Texas) were suddenly not available any time during the ~9 day period I had to get out of the old place and into the new one. The former bishop did come through at the last minute for one load, but ~150 other pickup owners couldn't find half an hour to let me load their truck, drive 6 miles and let me unload it.

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