General Question

eklamor's avatar

what do you know about Mormons

Asked by eklamor (415points) March 10th, 2008 from iPhone

I am Mormon, prefer LDS and I’m not looking to argue. Just curious what people know. Or why they feel that way about LDS people.

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18 Answers

brownlemur's avatar

Much of what I know is from Jon Krakauer’s Under the Banner of Heaven. Have you read that? Do you think it gives a fair and balanced view of LDS?

The other source of my knowledge is from a few episodes of South Park, which I imagine you may think gives an unfair and unbalanced view of Mormons.

segdeha's avatar

I made the crack on another thread that “Everything I know about Mormons I learned from South Park.” For the record, I was exaggerating to make a point about religious freedom. The South Park episode was, obviously, a parody, but I do think there are some screwy things about LDS (talking salamanders, for example). Thing is, the same can be said about any and every religion. I guess you can say I’m not super prejudiced against LDS, particularly. Rather, I’m a little prejudiced against all religions.

kevbo's avatar

I don’t mean for my reply to be offensive (and I guess you know where this is going). A few thoughts:

I have two women friends who refer to themselves as recovering Mormons. One is a lesbian. Both felt heavily oppressed living a Mormon life and left the faith.

I think baptizing the dead is an insane practice and a waste of time (although I do appreciate the side benefits to genealogy).

I watched a cable documentary on Mormons (and polygamy practices). The people were dressed in the most awful clothes one could imagine and the women talked the talk, but their faces spoke absolute misery.

I think Mormon temples aren’t the best contributions to architectural design.

When I drove through Zion Nat’l Park and stopped in towns on either side, I noticed a definite cultural difference, and it was palpably odd for me to be there. I guess it wasn’t a very welcoming feeling.

I don’t remember the details on my exposure to the concept, but I do respect Mormons’ devotion to family. Based on the above, it seems to play out not quite as well as it’s professed, but it’s an admirable value to hold up.

In general, I think it’s too excluding, too patriarchal and too repressive, but I respect to a degree that some things are kept sacred and that family is a central value.

allen_o's avatar

am I right in thinking that Mormons believe that the red Indians originated from Jews?

djbuu's avatar

Smart smart smart smart smart.

eklamor's avatar

First its there choice to turn away fro
faith. This religion is not the only one that teaches lesbianism is not of god. Baptism for the dead is an amazing blessing acting in proxy for a deceased loved one because they did not get baptised before they died gives us hope. There is life after we die. This plane of existence is not all god has in store for us. We will see our family again and we are giving them the oppertunity to enjoy all the blessings we have. And we do not practice polygamy. Anyone that does in the LDS church is excommunicated. And the temples are beautiful. Just like the temples of old. Solomans, the one in the wilderness with Moses. God has commanded them to be built again just like in times of old.

segdeha's avatar

I’m with kevbo. I think it’s pretty presumptive to baptise someone after their dead. If anyone does that to me, I’ll be pissed! Except, that I’ll be dead, so I won’t really know.

eklamor's avatar

actually we believe you have a choice. Its not like people are unaware that its happening. Its your choice when you have passed on to accept the work done for you or not. As in your case you might turn it down. And that’s fine. Free will after all.

eklamor's avatar

oh and the question about the red Indians and the Jews. Our belief is some of them not all. The book of Mormon tells of a group that came from Israel. They came to the Americas but different groups came as well

brownlemur's avatar

Serious question – what about the transcription of the tablets that were lost? Does that make sense to you?

segdeha's avatar

Does anyone ever “turn down” the baptism after death? I’d be surprised.

eklamor's avatar

The same person you are now will be the exact same person you will be when you die. If you liked to smoke here youll have that addicition there. If you are a happy person full of hope youll be that same person. If your cold and turn down the things of God here your going to be that same person. And are you referring to the book of Mormon in general or the book of lehi?

mcbealer's avatar

Not a whole lot… interesting posts though. I always drive by the HUGE temple near the beltway in MD and wonder what it looks like on the inside.

trainerboy's avatar

I am Mormon and am learning a lot about non-mormons here.

eklamor's avatar

any temple you see, you can see the inside when it is first built before it is dedicated. They are beautiful

thegodfather's avatar


I have to say that Under the Banner of Heaven is, IMO, not a good starting point if you’re really interested in learning about Mormonism. He actually doesn’t distinguish between fundamentalist Mormon groups and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which in my view, is a disastrous blunder. The vast majority of people identified with the Mormon movement are members of this church, not members of splinter groups. So that to me reveals Krakauer’s bias and shallow research. Second, he uses journalistic research techniques, which is fine and all, but can only go so far. He should have pulled together more historical data to show where these people came from, and to clarify the belief system instead of only touching on holes in that system.

A better treatment by a non-Mormon, if you’re interested, is Forty Years Among the Mormons by Jan Shipps. I also recommend Richard Bushman’s biography of Joseph Smith, Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling. This at least can give you a more solid foundation when gathering information on Mormonism.

fundevogel's avatar

Religion in general doesn’t make sense to me, and the Mormon religion has its share of weirdness. The bits that disturb me the most are the exclusivity of Mormon weddings/funerals, the temple garments and the posthumous conversion of people.

The garments don’t really have anything to do with me as a non Mormon, but they sound horribly inconvenient, and potentially damaging to ones self image. I’ve read about women having to stuff their garments into the their pantyhose which I can guarantee wouldn’t make me feel very good. And if you’re really not allowed to take them off, even for sex, that limits intimacy and teaches people to feel discomfort and shame in their bodies.

But the exclusive funerals/weddings and posthumous conversion bother me. I honestly can’t remember if both Mormon weddings and funerals are off limits to non members, but it definitely bothers me. The people one wants at both of those events are friends and family and excluding someone you would otherwise want present because they don’t believe the same as you is cultish. I don’t really expect that the weddings or funerals would be particularly different from the generic ceremonies, but the exclusion is VERY different.

And the posthumous conversion is just rude. I don’t like anyone preaching at me, but ultimately as long as I’m alive I can tell them I’m not interested. When you claim someone’s soul when they’re not around to speak for themselves—thats just disrespectful. It happened to a friends grandma when she died, and believe me the grieving family was not happy to have people they didn’t know trying redefine their kin. And the Mormon church did it to the holocaust victims, it’s down right insulting.

No offense meant, I’ve got serious qualms with most every religion out there. You just happened to ask about this one.

reijinni's avatar

Ever heard of a play called “Book of Mormom”? That has some of the stuff that I needed to know about that cult. And a documentary said the baptism rite were stolen from the freemasons.

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