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About rongo

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    Places Sun, Moon & Stars In The Sky
  • Birthday 07/19/1975

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    Baseball, basketball, football (especially college); LDS Church history; the Gospel; reading

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  1. rongo

    Temple Recommend Questions

    Sorry, rockpond. Any response I try to make is "403"d. I can't imagine why. No bad content or anything. Suffice it to say that I consider most people's response to the affiliation question to be similar to the final question: in the end, do *you* consider yourself . . .
  2. My former stake is holding their trek in December (in the Sonoran Desert near the Mormon Battalion camp site on the Butterfield Stake Route). My daughter and son (junior and freshman) will be participating in it. My wife and I were surprised to read the instructions sent to parents. No pioneer gear/wear. No women's pull. No dolls named after dead ancestors. No people dressed in white representing angels. Etc. I guess my advice as far as historical accuracy and the Church's dos and don'ts was heeded after all, "post-humously," after we moved. I had sent the stake leaders links to the Church's instructions in pointing out "sacred cows" that many stakes continue to disregard. The focus is going to be on the Restoration instead of handcart companies, but there will still be some necessary carting to bring supplies. It is essentially much more a co-ed extended camp out, with kids still divvied up into "families," and with lots of faith-building activities, campfires, etc.
  3. rongo

    Temple Recommend Questions

    I've never had giggling, laughing, or joking. It is a humongous sentence, so I find that the questioner needs to slow down, pause at the commas, and enunciate. Even then, it is confusing to many people, so I find that it needs to be explained as needed. I don't think it is solely addressing the polygamy issue, but rather, "any group or individual whose teachings or practices are contrary or opposed to those accepted by the Church." It's a good time for some to reflect on their "support, affiliat[ion] with, or agree[ment] with" such groups.
  4. These two items seem to be avoiding a problem to me. Suicide and suicide contagion are real phenomena (cf. Malcolm Gladwell's excellent chapter on this in "Tipping Point"). Studiously not talking about it seems to be burying our heads in the sand. I do agree that we should avoid contributing to the snowballing mania about it, as it appears to influence vulnerable people (people who are prone to suggestion about suicide).
  5. rongo

    Tithing Breaks Poverty Cycles?

    Ouagadoughou: It comes down to individuals and their experience. Have you experienced tangible miracles in your life, and do you believe in miracles? If the answer to that is no, then no amount of evidence will convince you. Even empirical evidence. On the other hand, if a poor person heard this counsel, and decided to lay it on the line and test it, then they will have done their own test that is 100% valid for them. Maybe it doesn't work, it's a bunch of baloney, and their cycle of poverty continues. Or, maybe testing it and paying a full tithing no matter what does, indeed, result in their breaking the poverty cycle. When God's messengers lay it on the line like this, they give people a choice. They can test it and see if the seed grows, or if it doesn't, and the result (either way) will impact them going forward. But people have to take the first step of faith in order to test it and see. Many poor people in impoverished nations testify that they have been blessed, spiritually and temporally, such that they don't have room to receive it. My testimony only has an impact inasmuch and to the extent that the Spirit testifies to others. My family has seen this in our lives --- in spades. We have had tangible, back-of-the-Ensign miracles because we pay tithing, but we have also had the Spirit and confidence that, come what may, we have good standing with God and are keeping our covenants. Skeptics will never be able to convince our children that these types of miracles aren't true or don't happen, because they lived it with us. They know of many of the miracles that we have had in our lives. An important principle is taught in Journal of Discourses by Heber C. Kimball, and that is that God's math in blessing us doesn't operate on the principle of 2+2=4. That is, the way God blesses us, or the way that he "delivers," often can't be logically and mathematically derived on paper. So, when paying tithing looks on paper like it will be catastrophic (I used the expression "feeling like you're jumping off a cliff" in counseling with a man about paying tithing, and he thought it was an apt description. This is someone who served a mission and was the dean of admissions at an elite Eastern University, too, but he didn't have the faith to pay his tithing), but people try it anyway in faith, and things work out (sometimes logically, but often not). When Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball went on their mission to England, they were given $5.00, and they made their way to New York. Along the way, they paid for food and lodging, and they marveled that they never ran out. When they got to New York, they had $82.50 (Heber C. believed that angels had physically put it in his pocket, while Brigham Young speculated that God had commanded the elements to transport and combine in his pocket). Things like this really happen (they have happened to me and my family), and when skeptics rail on the Church for teaching the bold doctrine of tithing, we just shake our heads. O they of little faith! For a God who we personally and experientially know can manipulate and command space, time, and the elements, prophesying to the poor that tithing will end their cycle of poverty is no leap at all.
  6. rongo

    Temple Recommend Questions

    I've never, and I don't think anyone has really, interpreted that to mean affiliation = "acquaintance-ship." That is, simply being related to or interacting with polygamists (or other groups --- polygamists aren't the only ones referred to in this question when it comes to "support" or "agreeing with" them) does not denote "affiliating" with them. It seems clear to me that what it meant is active advocacy. I worked with a COP (child of polygamy) as a ward mission leader in Salt Lake, and I had a member of my ward who was an adult daughter of a polygamist father. Both had to be interviewed by an apostle to be baptized, but there were no temple recommend issues after that with them having polygamist family. They renounced and dis-affiliated themselves from it, and that suffices as long as the leaders feel they are sincere. Blood relation or even friendship/acquaintance-ship doesn't constitute a strike with question #7. I would be fine with changes that clarify this, but I don't think they are necessary.
  7. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    You're overreacting to this. I never said "facts" depend on anecdotal experience. Individual impressions do, though. That's why they're individual. What I am saying is that if individuals have the impression that crime is worse, then that is their impression. Regardless of how many sociologists tell them it's really not that bad. If you're in a war zone, then the fact that Alpine, Utah is not doesn't color your impression. You sure about that? I'm going to wait and see how the people of those and other cities react to increasing violent crime. Note: this doesn't mean I think they're going to vote Republican. It means that they will demand the things start being done to change the trend. Population demographics and psychology are very different in Baltimore/Chicago and Berlin. So is the existing political landscape. You definitely have a minority view among active LDS that the phrase "law and order" is dog-whistle shorthand for racism, xenophobia, fascism, etc. Most people really do understand "law and order" under the expression "law and order."
  8. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    1) This depends entirely upon individual anecdotal experience. Violent crime certainly hasn't been falling in Chicago or Baltimore. If you live there (I'm from Chicago), it is perfectly understandable to have a "something needs to be done about this!" mindset, no matter how many sociologists tell you violent crime is actually declining and isn't really that bad. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crime_in_Chicago https://www.yahoo.com/news/baltimore-puts-230-desk-officers-streets-murders-mount-131536561.html This is the phenomenon in Germany: horror and outrage and rising crime in areas (even if not in the whole country). No, nothing like that. There are a lot of differences between how Jews were unfairly villified in Germany in the 30s and concerns about violent crime and violent crime syndicates in 2018 Germany. Did you actually read the Wall St. Journal article in the OP? Only to liberals. CFR that it well-established outside of CNN or Politico.
  9. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    That's an important point as well. It is remarkable that AfD is drawing support and numbers from people who are not right-wing. As you mentioned, these people won't tolerate what reactionaries are railing against --- and if these doomsday policies and predictions do end up coming to pass, then these "soft" supporters will abandon AfD and it will collapse. I think the people pooh-poohing "law and order" concerns as "dog-whistle for racism" grossly underestimate the power that violent crime can have on families --- especially when it happens in front of them and society is completely not used to that. That can turn any Paul Kersey (Charles Bronson) into a Death Wish vigilante. I think the same underestimation is evident among those who rage about President Trump's election. I didn't vote for Trump, but I understand the phenomenon behind his election and what drives that. A lot of people who can't stand him voted for him because of a reaction against how things are.
  10. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    This is an important point. The original emergence of the AfD was mostly right-wing. Last year's elections represented *gains* comprised of, surprisingly, SPD, and more left-wing parties. Which is pretty astonishing, but it illustrates how the immigration and crime problem can make for strange bedfellows. No, I don't expect the Green Party to ever move to the right . . .
  11. rongo

    Results: 10 day social media fast

    It does and it doesn't. It sounds cliche, but in a real sense, "we are more connected than ever before, and we are more alone than ever before." It's a way to have nominal, superficial "constant contact," but it often makes getting results harder. I've noticed (and pointed this out to multiple people when they couldn't get volunteers to clean the church or set up for a RS activity) that, "when you talk to everybody, you're talking to nobody." Meaning, when you make an announcement to a group (in spades, on social media), people are free to pass the buck. This is also a problem with "passing the clipboard around for signups." I've told countless frustrated people that they can't put something on Facebook and expect people to just show up. You have to talk to people in person or call (not text) them on the phone. If it just goes to voicemail (common, these days), leave a message and keep trying. Don't be afraid to knock on the door. If you talk to someone in person, they are much more likely to respond and actually come. I think that's what President Nelson is addressing. We (most of us) live our lives almost solely online now. We feel lonely if we get off of the online network. I think he was encouraging us (women, this time; youth last time; men, next time) to begin living life in the flesh again, instead of online.
  12. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    Done discussing in good faith and sticking to mockery? That's all you ever contributed here. I won't press you on backing up any of your claims. People can make up their own minds about that.
  13. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    What do you think about Okrahomer's post, Gray? Any response to that? That's the hot issue in Germany. It isn't, "Holy cow, we have budding fascism among us!," it's "Holy cow, people across the spectrum are turning to the right in many ways." Primarily from the two main parties, the CDU and SPD, but others as well. And, even if they don't become far-right, there are millions more who are more to the right now than before. Germany has a coalition government, which means that the party that wins needs to cobble together a coalition to put them over the halfway mark. The sharp rise in the AfD and the steep declines in the CDU and SPD (the decline was even sharper in the SPD, the more liberal party), means that whoever governs is going to have to have AfD's support. Even if SPD members don't become AfD, they are sliding more to the right and may be CDU. Or (and which also has an effect) not vote at all because of unhappiness, dissatisfaction, etc. That shows up in declines in votes, rather than "switching party" numbers. Also, this trend right-ward isn't just in the U.S. and Germany. It's popping up in many other countries as well. Much of it has to do with "law and order" concerns, economy, and immigration.
  14. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    CFR for where you are paraphrasing this from. And, CFR that "this is fascism." Please provide a definition for fascism, and show how it compares to your paraphrased definition. I'll help you. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fascism You'll need to demonstrate that the AfD is pushing for "dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition and strong regimentation of society and of the economy," according to this source.
  15. rongo

    Muslim crime families in Germany

    Okay. Where are you claiming that the 17% of the electorate came from?