What Mormonism boils down to

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startpoor
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What Mormonism boils down to

Post by startpoor » 18 May 2015, 09:55

This quote from ETB manual from ch 9 on the Book of Mormon, I think, is the core reason behind the motivation and fear that drives members to remain orthodox, to willfully ignore facts, refrain from reading the scriptures objectively and to lack empathy when someone else refuses to do so:

“I feel certain that if, in our homes, parents will read from the Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, both by themselves and with their children, the spirit of that great book will come to permeate our homes and all who dwell therein. The spirit of reverence will increase; mutual respect and consideration for each other will grow. The spirit of contention will depart. Parents will counsel their children in greater love and wisdom. Children will be more responsive and submissive to the counsel of their parents. Righteousness will increase. Faith, hope, and charity—the pure love of Christ—will abound in our homes and lives, bringing in their wake peace, joy, and happiness” (Ensign, May 1980, p. 67).

Thoughts?
Happiness (n.) The state of being in compliance with Mormon norms, regardless of one’s actual resulting emotional state

George, Sr.: Faith is a fact. No, faith is a facet. I almost said faith is a fact.

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Heber13
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by Heber13 » 18 May 2015, 11:04

That's a long list of promises. (skeptical)

But yes...that is what is promised and that is what many hope for.

I think it is part of faith...doing something. It is better than sitting and watching TV. It is better than criticizing others and doing nothing else. It is better than not reading anything.

My concern is that I don't know that all those promises are correlated with reading the BoM. It is HOW you read the Book of Mormon and HOW you act as a family that takes the BOM and gives it power to develop those blessings you hope for. Substitute the BOM with the New Testament, and I think you would get the same results if the approach is the same. Substitute NT with Torah or bhagavad gita, and I think you get the same thing.

That doesn't mean the BOM is false or bad. It is a tool we can try to increase harmony in the home.
D&C 109
7 And as all have not faith, seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom; yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom, seek learning even by study and also by faith;
I agree with that principle.

And I think Pres Benson used that principle to emphasize the Book of Mormon with members. I agree that is one application of the principle. Others may take it as specific to the BOM from a living prophet. And so, yes...they use that to warn their children not to look elsewhere. That part I don't agree with.
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."

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nibbler
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by nibbler » 18 May 2015, 11:16

Warning: good-natured snark ahead.

ETB is welcome to come to my home and try. ;)

I feel certain that if, in our homes, parents will read from the Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, both by themselves and with their children, the spirit of complaining bitterly about having to read scripture will come to permeate our homes and all who dwell therein. :angel:

More often than not announcing scripture reading time in our home turns the kids into groaning little eye rollers. I suppose all the promises only come true where there's extreme consistency and where parental authority has been sufficiently flexed. In homes where kids know just how red dad's face can get should they attempt to advocate their way out of scripture study time. :P
Cure sometimes, treat often, comfort always.
— Hippocrates

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Heber13
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by Heber13 » 18 May 2015, 11:23

nibbler wrote:the spirit of complaining bitterly about having to read scripture will come to permeate our homes
:lol: bwahaha...nibbler, you're awesome.
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."

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DarkJedi
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by DarkJedi » 18 May 2015, 13:56

I share Heber's skepticism and Nibbler's realism. I know I'm a bit of a dinosaur, but I remember these talks by Pres. Benson and didn't believe all those promises then (even as a TBM). Others eat them like candy though. In the interest of full disclosure, ETB is my least favorite of the prophets in my church lifetime (which started with SWK), and possibly of all time. I blame him for too much focus on the BoM at the expense of the teachings of the life of Christ contained in the Bible.

I was actually a bit perturbed yesterday during this lesson. I was in a different ward and a member of the stake presidency happened to be there too, and he happened to sit next to me in priesthood (it was admittedly a small room, and we do know each other). Besides the fact that having a counselor in the SP sitting next to me made it hard to distract myself with things such as visiting this site, I was pretty much dumbfounded by the audacity of the guy teaching the lesson. He repeated these same promises as if he were a bishop, stake president, or prophet himself and actually had authority to make such promises. He did all of this while looking directly toward the SP member (and by default me), as if trying to prove to the counselor that he actually believes and does the things. Fact is we both know him, too, and we know he doesn't do those things and his family shows no evidence of those promises being fulfilled.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to vent, Startpoor.
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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Curt Sunshine
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by Curt Sunshine » 18 May 2015, 14:13

What works for some people doesn't work for others - but most people don't understand that, even some prophets.

In his defense, he did say, "I feel certain . . ." That isn't a promise, no matter how much too many members think it is.

I don't defend Pres. Benson very often (okay, almost never), but there is NOTHING inaccurate in what he actually said. He did feel certain about it - and he was right for many members but wrong for many others.

Also, to be as blunt as possible, I think the title of this post is just as inaccurate as the accuracy of the quote being discussed. I think to say that Mormonism boils down to being blessed for reading the Book of Mormon is incredibly simplistic and wrong - kind of the polar opposite mirror-image of the quote in question.

If we condemn or criticize hyperbole from others, we ought not use it ourselves.
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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DarkJedi
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by DarkJedi » 18 May 2015, 19:00

I was admittedly a bit grumpy earlier (I live in the northeast where we're supposed to have these temps and humidity in July, not May). I do believe the BoM to be a good book that can bring you closer to God. I also believe reading the Bible, particularly the gospels, can bring you closer to God and that the statements made by ETB can apply to virtually all scripture reading.
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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SilentDawning
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by SilentDawning » 18 May 2015, 20:02

nibbler wrote:Warning: good-natured snark ahead.

ETB is welcome to come to my home and try. ;)

I feel certain that if, in our homes, parents will read from the Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, both by themselves and with their children, the spirit of complaining bitterly about having to read scripture will come to permeate our homes and all who dwell therein. :angel:

More often than not announcing scripture reading time in our home turns the kids into groaning little eye rollers. I suppose all the promises only come true where there's extreme consistency and where parental authority has been sufficiently flexed. In homes where kids know just how red dad's face can get should they attempt to advocate their way out of scripture study time. :P
INteract all that with my inability to do the same thing at the same time of day more than two days and a row, and you have a recipe for failure in my family. Not to say I'm undisciplined, but not disciplined in the way ETB needs me to be, for that promise to come to pass.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

amateurparent
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by amateurparent » 18 May 2015, 20:21

I was going to write that my family would do as well with Kahil Gabran's The Prophet. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the book that would really inspire my family would be The Hobbit. Poems, songs, great battles, an epic journey, and great lessons. If my family sat down and read 5 minutes of The Hobbit every night, we would be better people for the experience.

I'm not trying to be ugly about the BOM, but my family is hard to herd together for scripture study. Although I am less than proud of the fact, I do deal with the cool hard facts and realities of life. Next time we have some sort of scripture study, I am going to suggest a chapter of scripture and a chapter of Hobbit. I'll see which one is more inspirational for my family.
I have no advance degrees in parenting. No national credentials. I am an amateur parent. I read, study, and learn all I can to be the best parent possible. Every time I think I have reached expert status with one child for one stage in their life, something changes and I am back to amateur status again. Now when I really mess up, I just apologize to my child, and explain that I am indeed an amateur .. I'm still learning how to do this right.

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SilentDawning
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Re: What Mormonism boils down to

Post by SilentDawning » 18 May 2015, 20:25

amateurparent wrote:I was going to write that my family would do as well with Kahil Gabran's The Prophet. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the book that would really inspire my family would be The Hobbit. Poems, songs, great battles, an epic journey, and great lessons. If my family sat down and read 5 minutes of The Hobbit every night, we would be better people for the experience.

I'm not trying to be ugly about the BOM, but my family is hard to herd together for scripture study. Although I am less than proud of the fact, I do deal with the cool hard facts and realities of life. Next time we have some sort of scripture study, I am going to suggest a chapter of scripture and a chapter of Hobbit. I'll see which one is more inspirational for my family.
I find reading specific, short scriptures and discussing them is of far more value than reading chapter after chapter. Bring it to life with personal experiences. REading chapters is for personal study, in my view, not group study. Full chapter reading, without discussion, doesn't leverage the power of groups.
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

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