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Temple Recommend Questions

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3 hours ago, Bernard Gui said:

You are putting yourself in an awkward position.

I'm trying to understand how you pick and choose scriptures that support your positions.  What other scripture contradicts this? Do you believe the Father and the Son said these words? How do you parse this to suit your purposes?

I do not see how this is open to a lot of interpretation no matter where one may be on some sort of spectrum. Help me understand how you interpret this.

Sorry, but I can't see a productive path forward here.  Baby steps towards a better understanding is what is needed to start to look at scripture differently and I can't get you from your current perspective to where I am at on a message board thread.  If interested I would recommend reading these books which are pretty friendly for more conservative believers, but will open up some good questions and inquiry.  

https://www.amazon.com/Misreading-Scripture-Western-Eyes-Understand/dp/0830837825/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?ie=UTF8&qid=1539987307&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=misreading+scripture+with+western+eyes&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/Bible-Tells-Me-Defending-Scripture/dp/0062272039/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1539987335&sr=8-1&keywords=the+bible+tells+me+so+by+peter+enns

 

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5 hours ago, rongo said:

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.

My experience with performing TR interviews over 4 years is that the affiliation question gets more giggles, laughs, and jokes than all other questions combined.  For that reason I think it should be rewritten.  It is also a bit tough to understand grammatically when hearing it — as opposed to reading it... so many Deacons and Beehives would look at you like you had just spoken to them in a foreign language. 

I would guess that the Brethren want to rewrite it but even they can’t figure out exactly what it means. :)

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1 hour ago, hope_for_things said:

Sometimes when people ask me questions I get the impression that they aren't seeking to understand my perspective, but instead are seeking to find points of disagreement.  I'm getting that vibe here.  

I can empathize with anyone suffering concern over potential disagreement with their ideas. I'm not sure how to ease that pain for you, except to point out that I'm trying to understand a specific statement you made... I even said "Please"! :) I think these discussions provide a great opportunity to face one's concerns and build confidence and bridges by answering good questions (which I think mine is) at face value. Don't be shy!

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2 hours ago, hope_for_things said:

Sorry, but I can't see a productive path forward here.  Baby steps towards a better understanding is what is needed to start to look at scripture differently and I can't get you from your current perspective to where I am at on a message board thread.  If interested I would recommend reading these books which are pretty friendly for more conservative believers, but will open up some good questions and inquiry.  

https://www.amazon.com/Misreading-Scripture-Western-Eyes-Understand/dp/0830837825/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?ie=UTF8&qid=1539987307&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=misreading+scripture+with+western+eyes&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/Bible-Tells-Me-Defending-Scripture/dp/0062272039/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1539987335&sr=8-1&keywords=the+bible+tells+me+so+by+peter+enns

 

No thanks. Not interested. My reading some books can’t explain how you deal with the doctrine of baptism taught by the Father and the Son in 2 Nephi 31.

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21 hours ago, hope_for_things said:

I'm pointing out that pride is found within the church as well, nobody is immune.  Its not turning the scriptures on its head, I think its taking the scriptures more seriously and applying the lessons to ourselves.  

It’s an instance of “wresting the scriptures.” 

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13 hours ago, rockpond said:

My experience with performing TR interviews over 4 years is that the affiliation question gets more giggles, laughs, and jokes than all other questions combined.  For that reason I think it should be rewritten.  It is also a bit tough to understand grammatically when hearing it — as opposed to reading it... so many Deacons and Beehives would look at you like you had just spoken to them in a foreign language. 

I would guess that the Brethren want to rewrite it but even they can’t figure out exactly what it means. :)

Why are people giggling and joking in the course of a temple recommend interview? Seems out of keeping with the reverence and solemnity that should prevail on that occasion. 

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17 hours ago, rockpond said:

My experience with performing TR interviews over 4 years is that the affiliation question gets more giggles, laughs, and jokes than all other questions combined.  For that reason I think it should be rewritten.  It is also a bit tough to understand grammatically when hearing it — as opposed to reading it... so many Deacons and Beehives would look at you like you had just spoken to them in a foreign language. 

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. 

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2 minutes ago, rongo said:

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. 

You never had people make cracks like the ones mentioned earlier in this thread?

That's really what I was referring to... in re-reading my comment now it makes it sounds as if I read the question and then they laughed at it.  I meant that occasionally I would get those kinds of jokes with some light (not loud) laughter.

I would always read it slow and really over-work those comma separated phrases.  But, as you mentioned, it is still often hard to understand.  Especially by youth who are new to it.

I found it difficult to explain -- without clarification from the Brethren, I didn't feel that it was my place add further detail.  And as noted by others here:  what exactly is affiliation and support?  Teachings and practices?  I affiliate with and financially support the BSA but the Church doesn't agree with all its practices.  I affiliate (both professionally and personally) with individuals who do things that are contrary to those accepted by the Church.  I lease space in a building that I own to a brewery... am I guilty of supporting their practices.  My in-laws live in Las Vegas and know many Church members and leaders alike who are employed in the gambling industry -- presumably they have recommends.  Here in my stake where we have many military members, they often comment/joke about their affiliation with the military when this question is asked.  I know a Stake Patriarch who attended his sister's lesbian wedding... is that supporting a contrary practice or teaching?

If I take the question exactly as it is written than most people I know would have to answer in the affirmative.

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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 . . . 

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10 minutes ago, rongo said:

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 . . . 

Agreed.  And for that reason, I'd like to see the question eliminated or clarified.

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I haven't read everything here on this thread.  I just wanted to say that clarification is really important.  I had to move out of my county because in the perception of my father's temple recommend questions...(to him)...he could no longer associate with me.  I moved for many reasons...but mainly so that he could keep his recommend.

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15 minutes ago, Jeanne said:

I haven't read everything here on this thread.  I just wanted to say that clarification is really important.  I had to move out of my county because in the perception of my father's temple recommend questions...(to him)...he could no longer associate with me.  I moved for many reasons...but mainly so that he could keep his recommend.

And that was a really bizarre interpretation that I have never heard applied in anyone else's case, thank goodness (not saying your family was the only one to experience it, just the only one I have heard, so likely extremely rare).  And if I had known your father well enough, I would have shared my opinion that he was wrong and it was even sinful to treat his daughter in such a fashion.

I also highly doubt if he had explained his reasoning to his bishop, the bishop would have agreed with him and pulled his recommend.  

It would help, imo, for specific instruction to be received so authoritative counsel can be pointed to for counseling those who go to harmful extremes just in case a member wouldn't accept local leaders' teachings on this.

Edited by Calm

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45 minutes ago, Calm said:

And that was a really bizarre interpretation that I have never heard applied in anyone else's case, thank goodness (not saying your family was the only one to experience it, just the only one I have heard, so likely extremely rare).  And if I had known your father well enough, I would have shared my opinion that he was wrong and it was even sinful to treat his daughter in such a fashion.

I also highly doubt if he had explained his reasoning to his bishop, the bishop would have agreed with him and pulled his recommend.  

It would help, imo, for specific instruction to be received so authoritative counsel can be pointed to for counseling those who go to harmful extremes just in case a member wouldn't accept local leaders' teachings on this.

I expected many in his ward to kind of explain...but in his literal mind..that was the way he took it.  I don't blame anyone...my father was just as strict with himself as he was with the rest of us.  But...I don't blame anyone.  I knew what they meant ...but I was the last person he wanted to listen to.  😊

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31 minutes ago, Jeanne said:

I expected many in his ward to kind of explain...but in his literal mind..that was the way he took it.  I don't blame anyone...my father was just as strict with himself as he was with the rest of us.  But...I don't blame anyone.  I knew what they meant ...but I was the last person he wanted to listen to.  😊

That’s really sad.  I’m so sorry. 

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On 10/19/2018 at 3:23 PM, smac97 said:

Well, you'll have to explain that.  Your reasoning doesn't make sense to me.

 

Actually your reasoning didn't make sense to me.  You just listed off a bunch of principles that you thought were coercive without explaining why they could be.

 

On 10/19/2018 at 3:23 PM, smac97 said:

"Believe in God or lose your privileges."

"Keep the Word of Wisdom or lose your privileges."

"Be honest in your dealings with your fellow men or lose your privileges."

Not.

And it is it "coercive," then so is requiring belief in God, and in the atonement of Christ, and compliance with the WoW/LoC/LoT, etc. are also "coercive."  And that makes no sense at all.

Thanks,

-Smac

The principle under discussion is common consent. Consent does not exist where it is coerced. Do you disagree?

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38 minutes ago, Gray said:

Actually your reasoning didn't make sense to me.  You just listed off a bunch of principles that you thought were coercive without explaining why they could be.

The principle under discussion is common consent. Consent does not exist where it is coerced. Do you disagree?

Your question here needs to be given some context. You suggested that question #4 contradicts common consent, perhaps because a temple recommend can be denied if it is not answered in the affirmative. But one’s participation in common consent for sustaining or opposing callings is operative irrespective of possessing a recommend, of his vote, and even of his choosing to not participate. You seem to be conflating common consent with personal consent, which can be impacted by peer pressure or the desire for a recommend, but that is a matter of personal integrity and not coercion.

Personal consent does not exist under externally imposed coercion, but that is not the case with question #4. The desire for a recommend and to give honest answers are internally driven, irrespective of external pressures. If someone caves to such pressure, he has already given his consent for that to take precedence.

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4 minutes ago, CV75 said:

Your question here needs to be given some context. You suggested that question #4 contradicts common consent, perhaps because a temple recommend can be denied if it is not answered in the affirmative. But one’s participation in common consent for sustaining or opposing callings is operative irrespective of possessing a recommend, of his vote, and even of his choosing to not participate. You seem to be conflating common consent with personal consent, which can be impacted by peer pressure or the desire for a recommend, but that is a matter of personal integrity and not coercion.

Personal consent does not exist under externally imposed coercion, but that is not the case with question #4. The desire for a recommend and to give honest answers are internally driven, irrespective of external pressures. If someone caves to such pressure, he has already given his consent for that to take precedence.

Where there is coercion, there can be no meaningful consent. Your attempt to try to differentiate personal vs common consent based entirely on distinctions that you have invented, which do not exist in doctrine or in the temple recommend questions, or indeed English grammar. .

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9 hours ago, Gray said:

Actually your reasoning didn't make sense to me.  You just listed off a bunch of principles that you thought were coercive without explaining why they could be.

I don't think those principles are coercive.  I was being ironic.

Quote

The principle under discussion is common consent. Consent does not exist where it is coerced. Do you disagree?

I'm saying that sustaining of the leaders of the Church, as a condition for entry to the temple, is not "coercive."

I am saying that your reasoning, such as it is, would make any conditions for entry to the temple "coercive" (such as requiring belief in the Godhead, in the atonement of Jesus Christ, compliance with the Word of Wisdom, etc.).

Thanks,

-Smac

Edited by smac97
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46 minutes ago, Gray said:

Where there is coercion, there can be no meaningful consent. Your attempt to try to differentiate personal vs common consent based entirely on distinctions that you have invented, which do not exist in doctrine or in the temple recommend questions, or indeed English grammar. .

Please Google "personal consent" (it is a thing). The distinction is important for reasons I explained above. You complain that question #4 in the temple recommend interview coerces people to answer in the affirmative in order to obtain a recommend. But having participated in sustaining or opposing leaders actually preserves the principle of common consent (the product of many individuals' personal consent), whereas participating in the interview is a matter of personal consent. That makes the interviewee's reply a matter of personal integrity rather than coercion, for no one is forcing him to get a recommend or change his position on sustaining or opposing.

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On 10/20/2018 at 5:18 AM, Scott Lloyd said:

It’s an instance of “wresting the scriptures.” 

More like wrestling 

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4 hours ago, hope_for_things said:

More like wrestling 

No. Wresting is an apt term. It means to forcibly remove something. In this case it means forcibly removing scriptures from their proper context or meaning

 

 

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16 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

No. Wresting is an apt term. It means to forcibly remove something. In this case it means forcibly removing scriptures from their proper context or meaning

 

 

Someone could accurately accuse a fundamentalist of doing this very thing by proof-texting.  

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27 minutes ago, hope_for_things said:

Someone could accurately accuse a fundamentalist of doing this very thing by proof-texting.  

This is why I'm asking you to please explain what aspect of the Church's consent dynamic represents a developmental problem stunting the maturity and growth of an entire adult population, and how. No appeal to scripture is necessary, just an explication of the assertion you made a couple pages back; an articulation of its basis.

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On 10/20/2018 at 2:20 PM, rockpond said:

You never had people make cracks like the ones mentioned earlier in this thread?

That's really what I was referring to... in re-reading my comment now it makes it sounds as if I read the question and then they laughed at it.  I meant that occasionally I would get those kinds of jokes with some light (not loud) laughter.

I would always read it slow and really over-work those comma separated phrases.  But, as you mentioned, it is still often hard to understand.  Especially by youth who are new to it.

I found it difficult to explain -- without clarification from the Brethren, I didn't feel that it was my place add further detail.  And as noted by others here:  what exactly is affiliation and support?  Teachings and practices?  I affiliate with and financially support the BSA but the Church doesn't agree with all its practices.  I affiliate (both professionally and personally) with individuals who do things that are contrary to those accepted by the Church.  I lease space in a building that I own to a brewery... am I guilty of supporting their practices.  My in-laws live in Las Vegas and know many Church members and leaders alike who are employed in the gambling industry -- presumably they have recommends.  Here in my stake where we have many military members, they often comment/joke about their affiliation with the military when this question is asked.  I know a Stake Patriarch who attended his sister's lesbian wedding... is that supporting a contrary practice or teaching?

If I take the question exactly as it is written than most people I know would have to answer in the affirmative.

I think most folks get the sense that, while not considering oneself as apostate, one can privately and intentionally further apostate aims (according to the light and self-awareness they possess, of course). Everyone answers this on his own terms, and is free to discuss as he feels the need. All temple recommend responses are subjectively generated, the interview first and foremost based on self-accountability, and the decision based on the exercise of priesthood keys.

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5 minutes ago, CV75 said:

I think most folks get the sense that, while not considering oneself as apostate, one can privately and intentionally further apostate aims (according to the light and self-awareness they possess, of course). Everyone answers this on his own terms, and is free to discuss as he feels the need. All temple recommend responses are subjectively generated, the interview first and foremost based on self-accountability, and the decision based on the exercise of priesthood keys.

That's a lot of words to not really say much.

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