In the darkness the trees are full of starlight (henwy) wrote,
In the darkness the trees are full of starlight

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Go ye therefore, and teach all nations...

My posting of late has still been sporadic as you can see, mostly because I'm still going through those Kim Harrison audiobooks. Rejoice (or tremble) however since I'm on the last book and it probably won't be long until I return to something more normal. There have been a ton of things I've wanted to share on here, if for no other reason than to get my thoughts down, but most of it has gone by the wayside. I just wanted to toss out 2 cents on something that a comment on facebook just reminded me of. I've probably told quite a few of you at one time or another that I really like Mormons as a whole. I've often said that I've never met a mean or grumpy mormon in my life. You'd almost think they're grown in pods the way that every one I run across is a good, friendly, and often impeccably groomed person. I have to allow that there might actually exist evil Mormons out there, sort of like how the Jedi had the Sith, but in my entire life I've never run into one.

It's for that reason that I find Mormon bashing sort of inexplicable. I was reading about some of the blowback where one of Rick Perry's supporters called Mormonism a cult. He actually went a bit further then that and you can find a fuller excerpt and context here.

Jeffress described Romney's Mormon faith as a “cult,” and said evangelicals had only one real option in the 2012 primaries.

“That is a mainstream view, that Mormonism is a cult,” Jeffress told reporters here. “Every true, born again follower of Christ ought to embrace a Christian over a non-Christian.”

Now, I'm in no position to argue the religious points here, much less the intricacies of Christian doctrine. I'll admit the whole book made out of gold thing and visiting Indians seems a bit hokey to me but no more so than the entire idea of someone being the son of God and coming back to life. The only difference is one happened so many years ago and is so ingrained into our collective consciousness that all the rough edges have been worn off. Either is just as likely to be true, given the entire premise is fundamentally unprovable by definition. That said, even if Mormonism were some sort of cult, it seems to be a cult that promotes industriousness, family, sober living, sacrifice, community service, and being friendly. Hell, we should have more fucking cults like this. The world would almost certainly be a better place.

So it seems pretty clear that I really don't understand what some Christians have against Mormons. Hell, as far as I'm concerned, Mormons seem to be a better and purer expression of the very virtues Christianity claims to embrace. If holyness is achieved by being good, then they would seem to have a huge leg up.

I've often said that my little black soul shrivels a little bit every time I think about what some people are willing to do out of faith. I've met some Mormon missionaries in my day and I'm still amazed they're willing to do what they do. How many people you know would have willingly in the prime of their young life, take years out to travel across the country to preach the word of God to people? The entire idea almost seems ludicrous. I can imagine my response at that time in my life and it would have went something like, 'You want me to do what? @#%^ that.' It's not even like you often get sent to some place exotic or abroad where you can view it as a exotic adventure. Yeah, spending up to three years living in Alabama and trying to preach to strangers on the street and door to door sounds like tons of fun. That said, many young Mormons are willing to do that, which is just baffling to me. Forget for a moment that they may or may not be right. Forget for a moment that God might not exist and this may all just be a farce. Even if you told me there was a 100% chance that 100 people would die horrible deaths in Montana unless I spent three years there going door to door, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't do it. Frankly, I just don't care about people that much to save their lives much less something as ephemeral as their souls. That these people are willing to sacrifice their time and effort for their fellow man, whether salvation ends up being true or not, is amazing and also a bit shaming.

So in the end, I just don't get Mormon bashing. Frankly, I love Mormons and only wish I weren't so cynical and jaded by contrast. I don't understand the Christian hangup with them and I think it would be pretty spiffy if Romney won, if only to knock down that particular wall. The doctrinal squabbling just seems petty given the shared values, not to mention the amount of good.
Tags: lj-related, mormons, politics, religion

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