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Rivers

Coffee an Tea

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I can understand why tobacco is outlawed in the Word of Wisdom.  It also makes sense that alcohol is in there considering all the negative effects of alcoholism. But why tea and coffee?  Is there any good scientific literature out there that supports the declaration that tea and coffee is “not good?”

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5 minutes ago, Rivers said:

 Is there any good scientific literature out there that supports the declaration that tea and coffee is “not good?”

Not really, no.

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4 minutes ago, Rivers said:

I can understand why tobacco is outlawed in the Word of Wisdom.  It also makes sense that alcohol is in there considering all the negative effects of alcoholism. But why tea and coffee?  Is there any good scientific literature out there that supports the declaration that tea and coffee is “not good?”

The WoW was not based on scientific literature.  It came out of a time and place in the 1830s in a very specific context.  Why coffee and tea, honestly it wasn't based on any rigorous research.  It was how most of the early church ideas came about.  The idea popped into Joseph's mind or one of the other brethren, likely influence by writings of their day, and they ran with it. 

To me its sad that our church culture feels a sense of loyalty to continuing to follow the precedent set by someone who took such little thought in the first place to create this WoW rule.  And the underlying assumption that comes with any idea promulgated by a prophet, seer and revelator, is that this idea is God ordained.  

Think about the caffeine taboo and how long that has permeated the culture.  Who knows where that came from, someone in history making a connection between coffee and tea and caffeine and the fact that its a stimulant, and then deciding that this must be the reason those items are prohibited in the WoW, even though the text of the canonized scripture doesn't say anything about coffee and tea or caffeine.  Its all an interesting study in the dynamics of religious groups in general and Mormonism in particular.

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25 minutes ago, Rivers said:

I can understand why tobacco is outlawed in the Word of Wisdom.  It also makes sense that alcohol is in there considering all the negative effects of alcoholism. But why tea and coffee?  Is there any good scientific literature out there that supports the declaration that tea and coffee is “not good?”

Actually, the WoW's reference to "hot drinks" does not say that they are "not good," as opposed to "wine or strong drink among you" (v. 5) ("That inasmuch as any man drinketh wine or strong drink among you, behold it is not good, neither meet in the sight of your Father...").  Note the qualification as to alcohol "among" the Saints.

"Not good" is also used to reference tobacco consumption by people in v. 8 ("tobacco is not for the body, neither for the belly, and is not good for man, but is an herb for bruises"), except as "an herb for bruises."  

Instead, the only reference to coffee/tea is in verse 9 ("And again, hot drinks are not for the body or belly.").

I am not sure that the proscriptions in the WoW have 1:1 correlations to known health effects.  There could be additional reasons the Lord imposed these constraints.

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97

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18 minutes ago, hope_for_things said:

 

To me its sad that our church culture feels a sense of loyalty to continuing to follow the precedent set by someone who took such little thought in the first place to create this WoW rule.

 

wow

(no pun intended, just sadness)

Edited by ksfisher

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12 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Actually, the WoW's reference to "hot drinks" does not say that they are "not good" (as opposed to "

Thanks for the correction. 

Edited by Rivers

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20 minutes ago, ksfisher said:

wow

(no pun intended, just sadness)

Care to explain why?  

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41 minutes ago, hope_for_things said:

The WoW was not based on scientific literature.  It came out of a time and place in the 1830s in a very specific context.  Why coffee and tea, honestly it wasn't based on any rigorous research. 

Or, for that matter, on any research at all.  Instead, it purports to be revelatory.

41 minutes ago, hope_for_things said:

It was how most of the early church ideas came about.  The idea popped into Joseph's mind or one of the other brethren, likely influence by writings of their day, and they ran with it. 

Unless, of course, it is revelatory.

41 minutes ago, hope_for_things said:

To me its sad that our church culture feels a sense of loyalty to continuing to follow the precedent set by someone who took such little thought in the first place to create this WoW rule. 

I don't follow.  Could you clarify?

41 minutes ago, hope_for_things said:

And the underlying assumption that comes with any idea promulgated by a prophet, seer and revelator, is that this idea is God ordained.  

You are surprised that a tenet of our faith is presented as revelatory and accepted as such?  Why?

41 minutes ago, hope_for_things said:

Think about the caffeine taboo and how long that has permeated the culture.  Who knows where that came from, someone in history making a connection between coffee and tea and caffeine and the fact that its a stimulant, and then deciding that this must be the reason those items are prohibited in the WoW, even though the text of the canonized scripture doesn't say anything about coffee and tea or caffeine.  Its all an interesting study in the dynamics of religious groups in general and Mormonism in particular.

Still not following.

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2 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Or, for that matter, on any research at all.  Instead, it purports to be revelatory.

I'm not aware of any claims in the early church that the coffee and tea specifically was revelatory.  I think it was based on a Hyrum Smith statement if I remember correctly, but not a revelation.  Maybe someone more familiar with the history can comment on the origins of this idea.  

3 minutes ago, smac97 said:

I don't follow.  Could you clarify?

Yes, this is more a general commentary on early Mormon church history.  We have a small group of people, very untrained educationally and with a wide disparity of theological ideas and backgrounds.  In 1833 when the WoW text was produced, there were roughly 2k - 3k members, think 4-5 wards worth of people.  And the leaders were just trying to figure out how to run things.  Joseph was taking ideas he had and running with them.  Any idea that was proposed would be considered.  Picture Oliver or Sidney or W.W. Phelps or Emma in this case coming to Joseph with an idea about something and him saying, ok, lets take the ball and run with it.  Or I'll go pray about it and then he'd formalize the inspiration in a text and they would run with it.  It was very fluid and ad hoc.  

Its like your bishop having an open playing field for however he wants to run the ward, no handbook, just a small group of people spit-balling and coming up with ideas on how to manage a new religion.  Would have been quite exciting, but no ideas were rigorously considered after thorough research, debate, trial and error, etc.  I think of this as the wild wild west, for religious creation.  

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11 minutes ago, smac97 said:

You are surprised that a tenet of our faith is presented as revelatory and accepted as such?  Why?

Actually, I don't think believing every word or idea that comes from a church leader is a tenet of Mormonism.  I think common consent is a tenet.  I think reason and logic mixed with inspiration is a tenet.  I don't think anyone's speculation about scripture is a tenet (remember coffee and tea is found nowhere in the text).  

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I love my cup of morning liquid crack.

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I'll see your reasoned research and raise you several decades of study and extensive experimentation into the drawbacks or benefits of .... EGGS. Do we have a definitive answer yet?  We see studies as to the good and bad of coffee and tea all the time. Pick your poison. All it took for me was a summer washing dishes at a hotel and seeing the effects of coffee on the stainless steel counters where the left over was drained off.

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2 hours ago, smac97 said:

I am not sure that the proscriptions in the WoW have 1:1 correlations to known health effects.  There could be additional reasons the Lord imposed these constraints.

1, Coffee breath and stale coffee cups sitting around the office

2. Incredible amounts of money wasted on a non-nutritious drink. Granted, it makes the some of the sons of Lehi a good living

3. A very simple and almost universal test of obedience

http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/american-coffee-habits-spend-coffee/story?id=16923079

Quote

A new report estimates that the average American worker spends nearly $14.40 a week on coffee, which does not include the cost of drinking coffee at home. Data is shown to indicate that the average worker spends around $1,100 annually on coffee.

Not only are American's spending thousands on caffeine, but nearly half of U.S. workers say they are less productive without their daily cup of coffee. Scientists and lab technicians are the most dependent on coffee, followed by marketing and public relations professionals.

 

Edited by Bernard Gui

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3 hours ago, The Nehor said:

Yeah, without research, debate, and trial and error they were sure to get it wrong. If only there was some way for God to communicate his will to his followers to avoid such wrongness........alas.......

Perhaps there is some realistic model for early church leaders experimenting and occasionally being inspired in the overarching process.  The all or nothing approach is what I’m critiquing.  

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1 hour ago, hope_for_things said:

Perhaps there is some realistic model for early church leaders experimenting and occasionally being inspired in the overarching process.  The all or nothing approach is what I’m critiquing.  

I also critique that approach (if by that you mean everything or nothing was inspired with no middle ground). I also critique your realistic model with only occasional inspiration.

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If you drink too much caffeinated coffee and tea studies have shown you can suffer from gastrointestinal difficulties, such as ulcers or diarrhea 
https://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/coffee-harm-gut/ ,
not to mention an addiction to it that makes one dependent on it to get themselves going. We should be the masters of our own bodies and spirits if we want to be temples as we are told we should be. We lose control if we allow ourselves to be addicted to something.
Besides this it is a test of our level of obedience to what God wants us to do as instructed through His prophets. 

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1 hour ago, The Nehor said:

I also critique that approach (if by that you mean everything or nothing was inspired with no middle ground). I also critique your realistic model with only occasional inspiration.

It’s pretty hard to measure the amount of inspiration involved, so occasionally is my observation, but it could be anywhere between 1% and 99%. 

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12 minutes ago, Hamba Tuhan said:

Based on my observation, the Saints tend to project their own personal experiences with revelation onto the prophets.

I certainly do this. I refuse to believe that the prophets are in receipt of less, less varied or less frequent revelation than I am.

Pretty much this.

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7 hours ago, smac97 said:

Actually, the WoW's reference to "hot drinks" does not say that they are "not good," as opposed to "wine or strong drink among you" (v. 5) ("That inasmuch as any man drinketh wine or strong drink among you, behold it is not good, neither meet in the sight of your Father...").  Note the qualification as to alcohol "among" the Saints.

"Not good" is also used to reference tobacco consumption by people in v. 8 ("tobacco is not for the body, neither for the belly, and is not good for man, but is an herb for bruises"), except as "an herb for bruises."  

Instead, the only reference to coffee/tea is in verse 9 ("And again, hot drinks are not for the body or belly.").

I am not sure that the proscriptions in the WoW have 1:1 correlations to known health effects.  There could be additional reasons the Lord imposed these constraints.

Thanks,

-Smac

I doubt any of this has to do with the lord.  Please correct me if I am wrong, and show me where the lord has made any amendments to the original word of wisdom that is found in the D & C.  I would think it would take a new revelation to change canonized doctrine.   

I lump the Prohibition on coffee and tea in the same category as the priesthood restrictions, and the Adam God non-sense.  Just leaders taking upon themselves to make doctrine.

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4 minutes ago, sunstoned said:

I doubt any of this has to do with the lord.  Please correct me if I am wrong, and show me where the lord has made any amendments to the original word of wisdom that is found in the D & C.  I would think it would take a new revelation to change canonized doctrine.   

I lump the Prohibition on coffee and tea in the same category as the priesthood restrictions, and the Adam God non-sense.  Just leaders taking upon themselves to make doctrine.

It does not take a written revelation to change canonized scripture.

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Just now, The Nehor said:

It does not take a written revelation to change canonized scripture.

How about any hint of a revelation?  There is nothing on this.  Just like there was nothing about the restriction of blacks and the Priesthood.  And look where that got us.

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6 minutes ago, sunstoned said:

I doubt any of this has to do with the lord.  Please correct me if I am wrong, and show me where the lord has made any amendments to the original word of wisdom that is found in the D & C.  I would think it would take a new revelation to change canonized doctrine.   

I lump the Prohibition on coffee and tea in the same category as the priesthood restrictions, and the Adam God non-sense.  Just leaders taking upon themselves to make doctrine.

So you do accept the original Word of Wisdom as coming from the Lord through revelation? Is that what you're saying? 

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