My Best & Worst List

Public forum for topics that don't fit into the other categories.
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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by nibbler » 18 Apr 2019, 06:38

It's not officially in the scriptures but it is most certainly quoted as if it were scripture, even during GC.

Probably another semantics issue. I was referring to official canon but the practiced canon is open. Essentially the exact opposite of what I was saying in that other comment. :smile:
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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by AmyJ » 18 Apr 2019, 07:42

I don't have all my what I define as scripture figured out yet, but I am an individual open cannon person.

If scripture is defined as "the words of people that should be listened to and taken seriously on a personal level" - then my personal cannon is some General Conference talks/teachings, some posts on this site, some inspirational self-help like books, other books (such as the Book of Mormon), some ASD writers, and a variety of religious scholars.

If scripture is defined as "records of interactions between individuals/groups of people and God", then I don't know yet.

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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by dande48 » 18 Apr 2019, 10:48

nibbler wrote:
18 Apr 2019, 06:38
Probably another semantics issue.
My definition of LDS scripture/doctrine comes down to whatever I could say is scripture (or not scripture) in SS or over the pulpit without getting lynched.
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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by DarkJedi » 18 Apr 2019, 11:40

dande48 wrote:
18 Apr 2019, 10:48
nibbler wrote:
18 Apr 2019, 06:38
Probably another semantics issue.
My definition of LDS scripture/doctrine comes down to whatever I could say is scripture (or not scripture) in SS or over the pulpit without getting lynched.
So you could say the Proclamation is scripture without getting lynched, just as you could say whatever was in last GC is scripture without getting lynched. But there would be lots of people keeping their pitch forks in the shed who know they're not really scripture in the canonized sense (and they would include heretics like me as well as some orthodox members). And there might be times depending on the context and the audience (and how many allies I have in the room) when I might say something like "I was speaking of the canon" or "Let's stick to canonized scripture." I know there's been some conversation in other threads about the CoC and how their D&C has continued to grow. Their canon does include things like the Proclamation. In that sense, I am glad ours is more limited.
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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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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by hawkgrrrl » 18 Apr 2019, 12:04

When it comes to open canon, I think it's a huge mixed blessing. The attitude of it is helpful (in not taking the scriptures too seriously), but let's be honest. So much of this stuff just doesn't hold up. Jane Austen provides more insight into human nature and virtue than the Book of Mormon (I'll put the New Testament on par), and light years ahead of the lawyer-written Proc which is mystifying in how little it understands human nature. It's really just a prescribing of gender and family roles to uphold culture wars and fight gay marriage. It's not wise. It's not insightful. When I find that someone likes it, I instantly think less of them.

Obsession with worthiness. Holding worthiness interviews. Temple recommend status. Pigeonholing people into a label - investigator, convert, inactive, worthy, not in good standing, etc.
Excellent point. Also, the idea that anything we do "earns" us God's grace or that some of us have earned it and others have not. The new word is "qualifying" for grace.

We have a bonus program we do for our employees, and I was talking with one of them because she was upset that she had missed one of the growth goals she's been assigned, and she said it wasn't fair if she wasn't paid anyway. I told her she needed to get rid of that idea because her being paid was a byproduct of two things: 1) company growth, and 2) our generosity at being willing to share profits with our employees. You don't get a bonus just for doing the basics.

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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by Old-Timer » 18 Apr 2019, 12:25

"You don't get a bonus for doing the basics."

Fwiw, that is a really good synopsis of the thought process behind the three degrees of glory and "earning" or "being worthy of" exaltation and not just salvation.

I like eternal progression and eventual judgment upon completion of the LONG, eternal journey specifically because it feels much more fair than a traditional bonus structure that rewards those who are good enough at something to be rewarded officially and doesn't reward those who aren't as good at it - or those who don't do the work that generates the bonus. Of course, that is based on what I have experienced with sales bonuses that don't include non-sales people. Equally divided and distributed organizational bonuses are a different story - but that model is rare. That model fits my desire much better, but individual bonuses are even better to me IF they are paid to literally everyone, at the max level possible and equitable, "without end" and throughout time and all eternity until there is nothing more to pay as a bonus due to everyone's accounts being full.
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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.

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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by SilentDawning » 19 Apr 2019, 08:28

1. Generally the people are nice people.
2. Good place to hob nob with other youth with generally good character; youth focus.
3. Provides a community no matter where you go -- at least, on the surface.
4. For some, it provides simple boxes to check so your chances of a good life after death are increased. This brings peace to some people.
5. BYU -- affordable, quality education.
6. Two Hour Church

1. Lay Clergy -- they are supposed to be spiritual advisers but most don't know diddly except what they've gleaned from life experience or what they do for a living. Often inaccessible or indifferent due to having full-time jobs and other commitments.
2. Inaccessible LDS Social Services.
3. Ingroup Outgroup syndrome. Do the program -- you're in. Don't do it, you're out. Love and being part of the community is highly conditional, and you can fall out of favor fast. Lots of judgmentalism.
4. Plural marriage, priesthood ban, one year waiting period.
5. Forced tithing, bad treatment of volunteers (taken for granted).
6. Ambiguous what is doctrine, which shifts from doctrine to policy and policy to doctrine depending on whether the doctrine or policy makes the church look good or bad.
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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by Gerald » 20 Apr 2019, 04:38

Thought provoking question...below are my resulting thoughts.


1. Wards: There is something so very comforting to me about this local community. I do believe that bishops have the most important jobs in the Church and that a good ward can make up for lots of deficits in policy and doctrine. That said, I recognize that this is NOT a universal experience for everyone and I've heard plenty about bad wards (I've even been in one). But the POTENTIAL in the concept is pretty powerful.

2. Emphasis on Education: While I have some quibbles with the Church Educational System as an institution, the Church does appear to work hard to bring educational opportunities (at a low cost) to its members (e.g. BYU Pathways Worldwide). I would even venture to say that it is of fairly decent quality.

3. Religious Education: I know there are plenty of problems with Sunday School, Primary, and Seminary curricula but I think it's easy to forget that we know our scriptures fairly well. Of course, most of us aren't Biblical scholars but, compared to the world at large, we know a great deal. This was brought home to me when I played an online trivia game where the topic was the Old Testament and got every question right. We take for granted how much we as members know.


1. Genealogy: I know it's important but have a hard time getting excited about it.

2. Temples: See #1

3. Missionary Work: See #1 again


1. General Authority Worship: Drives me crazy. It has really gotten bad in the last decade or so. As a child, members seemed impressed by the authorities but I don't remember the kind of fawning, star-struck behavior that I see in members today.

2. Single Adults and Young Single Adults: The Church keeps tweaking their programs but I just don't think they've figured out how to effectively integrate individuals from these groups into a Church with a significant emphasis on families.

3. Corporate Concepts: One of the worst things about church culture is the appropriation of business constructs into a religious context. Examples: Father INTERVIEWS, Companionship INVENTORY, Family COUNCILS. Then there's the whole emphasis on LEADERSHIP at some levels. I went to a stake priesthood meeting where the visiting General Authority had a chalkboard wheeled in and started scribbling words like "STRATEGY" and "OBJECTIVES" on the board. Just not my cup of tea (herbal, of course).
So through the dusk of dead, blank-legended And unremunerative years we search to get where life begins, and still we groan because we do not find the living spark where no spark ever was; and thus we die, still searching, like poor old astronomers who totter off to bed and go to sleep, to dream of untriangulated stars.
---Edwin Arlington Robinson---

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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by hawkgrrrl » 25 Apr 2019, 11:08

Gerald, your list is close to my own list. The only thing I'll add on YSAs is that the biggest symptom of this problem is the infantilizing of YSAs, and that the church's focus on "family / marriage" is the root cause. There's this weird assumption that a married 20 year old is somehow capable of chaperoning the activities of unmarried 26 year olds. Marriage =/= maturity and singledom =/= immaturity.

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Re: My Best & Worst List

Post by mom3 » 27 Apr 2019, 11:23

Nothing to add. Loved the post.
"I stayed because it was God and Jesus Christ that I wanted to follow and be like, not individual human beings." Chieko Okazaki Dialogue interview

"I am coming to envision a new persona for the Church as humble followers of Jesus Christ....Joseph and his early followers came forth with lots of triumphalist rhetoric, but I think we need a new voice, one of humility, friendship and service. We should teach people to believe in God because it will soften their hearts and make them more willing to serve." - Richard Bushman

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