Mormon Culture

What happens without a loyal opposition?

July 28, 2016
What happens without a loyal opposition?

Most organizations face a dilemma. On the one hand, too much factionalism and resistance and they break down into feuding, balkanized  fragments. On the other hand, without any pushback, they turn into an echo chamber of yes men. The trick to success is to harness the power of loyal opposition. Thus the Chinese wisdom saying:  “A […]

Posted in LDS, leadership, Mormon, Mormon Culture | 59 Comments »

Abandoned

July 25, 2016
Abandoned

I grew up in rural Pennsylvania, outside the small village of Bainbridge on a country lane called Locust Grove. We lived atop a hill surrounded by corn fields. The Conoy Indians used to live there [1] nestled between the banks of the Susquehanna and the Conoy Creek. We sometimes found arrow heads in the corn […]

Posted in Agency, Apostasy, Christian, Criticism, Culture, Doctrine, doubt, emotions, Empathy, Faith, faith crisis, Feminism, Freedom, LDS, LGBT, Mental Health, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion | 16 Comments »

Prophet Among Us (part 2)?

July 24, 2016
Prophet Among Us (part 2)?

Several of you didn’t like the choices last week when I asked who was the most likely apostle (among the top 6 in seniority) to give us a new revelation.  So, let’s ask the question again, amongst the bottom half of the apostles!  (Note this is listed by seniority.)

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Posted in LDS, leadership, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, scriptures | 27 Comments »

Bad Memes

July 18, 2016
US President Eisenhower with Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson.  He later called Eisenhower "a tool of the communists."

If you’re on Facebook, you’ve probably seen many of these memes.  I’d like to point out some of the ones that I’m not much of a fan of.  Take this one from Elder Ezra Taft Benson. On the one hand, it seems to be intended for conservative leaning folks, those who can’t seem to stomach […]

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Posted in History, LDS, Mormon, Mormon Culture, Politics | 16 Comments »

The Limits of Empathy

July 12, 2016
The Limits of Empathy

Today’s guest post is from Brother Sky. There have been some significant events over the past eight months involving the church and how it treats people (the November policy change, sexual assault at BYU, ongoing women and the priesthood discussions, etc.) Kristine A wrote a post about a year ago about how Mormons aren’t terribly good at empathy. […]

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Posted in Agency, Apostasy, Criticism, Culture, emotions, Empathy, Faith, LDS, LGBT, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Politics, Pride, Race Relations, Spirituality | 21 Comments »

Hillary vs. Howard: Are Successful Women Less Likeable?

July 12, 2016
Hillary vs. Howard: Are Successful Women Less Likeable?

Heidi Rozen was a successful venture capitalist. Frank Flynn, a professor at Columbia Business School, used her resume in a now-famous experimental study to see what types of bias evaluators would exhibit based solely on the sex of the applicant being reviewed. Half of his students were given Heidi’s resume with her real name. The other […]

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Posted in Agency, Criticism, Culture, Education, Empathy, Feminism, Freedom, gender equity, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Patriarchy, Politics, Tradition, Uncategorized, Women, workplace | 8 Comments »

Happiness vs. Marriage

July 5, 2016
Happiness vs. Marriage

A recent New York Times article talked about the psychological reasons we choose our marital partners, and those reasons were far less designed to result in our happiness than we might expect. Because we lack self-awareness about our wishes and rationales, we are unaware of both what we need and what we seek in marriage. But though […]

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Posted in Agency, emotions, Empathy, faith crisis, LDS, Mental Health, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Religion, Women | 19 Comments »

Temples Struck by Lightning

July 3, 2016
Utah Temple Passport

My daughter recently turned 12, and wanted to participate in baptisms for the dead.  She also wanted a temple recommend holder.  I stopped by Seagull Book and discovered these temple recommend holders cost between $3-4, which seems ridiculously expensive for a simple piece of plastic.  While there, I discovered a Utah Temple Passport for around $6. […]

Posted in LDS, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Temple | 20 Comments »

When Are Women Men and Men Women?

June 28, 2016
When Are Women Men and Men Women?

As a woman, it can sometimes be difficult to determine what in the scriptures applies to me and what doesn’t. Sometimes when I mention this to people, they think I am being purposefully obtuse. Today’s guest post is from EBK. To illustrate the issue, I have made a list of scriptures below that can present […]

Posted in Agency, Church Policy, Criticism, Culture, doubt, Education, emotions, Empathy, Faith, faith crisis, Feminism, Freedom, gender equity, General Conference, LDS, leadership, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Polygamy, Priesthood, Religion, scriptures, Spirituality, Sunday School, Tradition, Women | 19 Comments »

Origen & the Pre-Existence, Coats of Skins

June 27, 2016
Origen & the Pre-Existence, Coats of Skins

I was listening to a great Maxwell Institute podcast in which Blair Hodges interviews Peter Martens. Among other topics, Martens briefly discussed early church father Origen who was denounced postumously for his heretical views, some of which, although they may have been anathema to Catholics, are particularly of interest to Mormons. Origen was an early Christian scholar […]

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Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Christian, Church Policy, Criticism, Culture, Doctrine, doubt, Excommunication, Faith, faith crisis, Feminism, Freedom, gender equity, LDS, leadership, Mental Health, Modesty, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Premortality, Religion, Spirituality, Temple, theology, Tradition, Women | 16 Comments »

Does D&C 132 support Polyandry?

June 26, 2016
Does D&C 132 support Polyandry?

This past week, we’ve discussed polyandry–the idea that a woman can have multiple husbands.  (Polygyny is the concept where a husband can have multiple wives.  Polygamy encompasses both polygyny and polyandry.)  The reason this came up was due to a presentation I attended at the Mormon History Association meetings.  Many people have charged that Josephine’s mother […]

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Posted in Church Policy, History, Joseph Smith, LDS, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Patriarchy, Polygamy, Prophet, theology, Women | 6 Comments »

Less Temple Laundry?

June 25, 2016
Less Temple Laundry?

The LDS Church has recently changed clothing requirements for both baptisms and initiatory rites at temples.  With regards to baptisms for the dead, patrons used to be issued 2 white jumpsuits:  (1) that got really wet for the baptisms, and (2) to be worn during the confirmation process.  Due to recent administrative changes, patrons may […]

Posted in Church Policy, LDS, Mormon, Mormon Culture, Temple | 9 Comments »

Risk & Religious Prilgrimage

June 22, 2016
Risk & Religious Prilgrimage

Today’s guest post comes from Rob (@RobTmanJr). He is a convert to the LDS Church, has three kids, and lives in Salt Lake City.  He can’t read something without wanting to make edits. With the recent heartbreaking news of a Young Women leader dying of heat stroke during an LDS pioneer trek event, I have been […]

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Posted in LDS, Mormon Culture, Roman Catholic Church | 12 Comments »

What’s the Cost of a Mission?

June 21, 2016
What’s the Cost of a Mission?

Today’s guest post is by Megan. What’s the cost of a mission? There’s a monetary cost, of course, money spent in preparation and then more money paid every month in support. My father took a second job to help pay for the cost of sending my brother and me into the mission field, while he was […]

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Posted in Agency, Blind Obedience, Charity, Christian, Church Policy, Criticism, Culture, emotions, Empathy, Faith, faith crisis, Freedom, Grace, Gratitude, LDS, leadership, LGBT, Mental Health, Mission, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Religion, Tradition, Women | 24 Comments »

Becoming “Nones”: 3 Exit Ramps

June 21, 2016
Becoming “Nones”: 3 Exit Ramps

I recently listened to one of Blair Hodges’ Maxwell Institute Podcasts. He was speaking with Elizabeth Drescher, discussing “The Spiritual Lives of America’s Nones.” She studied the behaviors and beliefs of the increasing number of people who are leaving religion behind and claiming no affiliation. Personally, I hate podcasts, but this one was well worth a listen, […]

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Posted in Agency, Anti-Mormon, Apostasy, Atheism, Christian, Church Policy, Criticism, Culture, Doctrine, doubt, Education, emotions, Empathy, Faith, faith crisis, Feminism, Freedom, LDS, leadership, LGBT, Modesty, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Patriarchy, Politics, Pride, Prophet, scriptures, theology, Tradition, Women | 29 Comments »

#MHA2016: Memories of Missouri & Sexual Violence

June 16, 2016
#MHA2016: Memories of Missouri & Sexual Violence

This past weekend was my first time attending MHA – it was amazing and I want to give a standing ovation to the organizers.  I suppose I’m one of a few dozen of the crowd that happily attend both MHA and Sunstone, there was a group that I recognized from both – which was fun. […]

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Posted in Feminism, History, Honor Code, Mormon Culture, Reviews, Women | 4 Comments »

Amnesia, Arguments, and Alliances

June 14, 2016
Amnesia, Arguments, and Alliances

I’ve gotten immersed in the Outlander books by Diana Gabaldon.  It’s the story of a combat nurse from World War II transported back in time 200 years while visiting the Scottish highlands.  Although she’s English, and therefore an enemy in the conflicts underway in Scotland in the mid-1700s, these are not her personal conflicts.  Her own […]

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Posted in Agency, Apostasy, Blind Obedience, Criticism, Culture, emotions, Empathy, Faith, faith crisis, Feminism, Freedom, LDS, LGBT, Mental Health, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, scriptures, theology, Tradition | 6 Comments »

As a Little Child

June 5, 2016
As a Little Child

Today’s guest post is from Megan. Ever since Holy Week, my dad and I have been trying to read the scriptures together whenever we get a chance.  Our first goal was to read 3 Nephi.  We started in April and it’s now June, so, like I said, trying. But our slow progress isn’t the point.  […]

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Posted in Agency, Charity, Christian, Culture, Doctrine, Education, emotions, Empathy, Faith, Freedom, Grace, Gratitude, LDS, Mental Health, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Religion, scriptures | 6 Comments »

Why didn’t someone tell me — Just what “eternity” means

June 2, 2016
Why didn’t someone tell me — Just what “eternity” means

A dear friend of mine died last year.  As she aged she reflected that while it used to be that waiting for Christmas seemed like years — and the wait was 25% of her life, it now seemed like it came once a week (or about 1.25% of her life).  The conversation was interesting because […]

Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Culture, History, Mormon Culture, Premortality, Technology, Uncategorized, understanding | 13 Comments »

Faith Transition vs Something Else

June 1, 2016
Faith Transition vs Something Else

Last August, Kristine wrote about labeling her personal experience a “faith transition”: Four years ago I started to question things I’d been taught in the Church because I received an answer to prayer that I believe conflicted with church teachings. I started questioning almost everything, but never the core foundation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ or […]

Posted in Bill Reel, Faith, faith crisis, Mormon Culture, Religion | 116 Comments »

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