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JAHS

Flunking Sainthood.....again

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Two thoughts came to mind when I read this - first, how on God's green earth does this exalted individual know the motivations of another? How pompous does one have to be before gaining this vaunted quality? Second, gads, am I really tired of those who talk ad nauseam about the great failings of society... "especially for women".  I have yet to meet an individual that actually understood what it means to be the opposite sex or capable of defining what challenges every individual encounters. Suffice it to say that if we are going to begin talking about our own challenges, don't attempt to claim them for a single gender. In doing so, you will be wrong every time. 

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14 hours ago, Calm said:

Unless there was something really obvious, like one of the women saying something explicit, it seems a huge stretch to go that far in assuming that is how they think about it.  And it does seem very judgmental of someone else to make that assumption.

Me, it seems more likely just a habit and they for some reason didn't pick up on the nonverbals that might have led them to back off.  From what I have heard temple workers are trained to try and help patrons be comfortable, not to be sticklers.  Maybe they got the impression she was someone who cared about such things even.

Did you read the essay?

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15 hours ago, Calm said:

Unless there was something really obvious, like one of the women saying something explicit, it seems a huge stretch to go that far in assuming that is how they think about it.  And it does seem very judgmental of someone else to make that assumption.

Me, it seems more likely just a habit and they for some reason didn't pick up on the nonverbals that might have led them to back off.  From what I have heard temple workers are trained to try and help patrons be comfortable, not to be sticklers.  Maybe they got the impression she was someone who cared about such things even.

I remember the feeling that how I put things on during the endowment session was critical, and the temple worker sisters would very lovingly help me do it the right way, so that's what I think the sister sitting behind her was probably trying to do. Probably wanted to help this sister avoid having to have a temple worker sister come over to help adjust the veil in front of everyone. So Jana IMO got it all wrong, totally!

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Summary the article: lady A has a minor clothing malfunction.  After the ordinance, lady B offers and shows her how to avoid the minor malfunction.  Lady B expresses not knowing something in the temple for sure. Lady A does not share her thoughts on the matter with Lady B.   Instead from this one statement Lady A internally judges the entirety of Lady B's life, while saying that we shouldn't judge and police other women.

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26 minutes ago, Thinking said:

I'm not sure why it's a big deal for the helpers to help.

Did you read the article?

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3 minutes ago, Avatar4321 said:

Or why an act of kindness is a sign of a life afraid of judgment

Agreed.  

Some people do get embarrassed when they have a clothing malfunction, however minor.  This isn't an LDS-specific thing remotely.  Offering to help afterwards (done in private, trying to be humble about it) is not a horrible deed at all, but rather a good way of handling things.

Edited by Jane_Doe
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15 minutes ago, Jane_Doe said:

Summary the article: lady A has a minor clothing malfunction.  After the ordinance, lady B offers and shows her how to avoid the minor malfunction.  Lady B expresses not knowing something in the temple for sure. Lady A does not share her thoughts on the matter with Lady B.   Instead from this one statement Lady A internally judges the entirety of Lady B's life, while saying that we shouldn't judge and police other women.

“Lady B expresses not knowing something in the temple for sure”

 

From article lady B says:

Then she took my veil in her hands and told me it was “all wrong,” and she was going to show me how to put it on correctly for the next time. Which she proceeded to try to do, and even she wasn’t able to (that veil has always been a bit wonky; I’m a cheapskate). It got her a bit flustered.

“Well, I don’t think this meant that you invalidated the ordinance or anything,” she said, handing back the obstinate veil. “I mean, I don’t think so.””

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48 minutes ago, Avatar4321 said:

How on earth does she conclude that tiny mistakes threaten your eternal value? That is completely contrary to everything the Lord teaches us.

we are taught that we are worth so much to Him despite our flaws that He sent His Son to die for us and redeem us. He has reiterated this point many times in the scriptures telling us the worth of our souls is great and precious to Him.

 

 

My neighbor who is literally the best Latter-day Saint I’ve ever known cries often, feeling like she is not good enough. From my experience in the church, this is not uncommon. Per Jana’s research judgement was the number one reason women leave the church. While not the reason she left the church, my wife’s biggest increase in happiness after leaving was leaving behind the feeling that she was always failing. 

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1 minute ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

My neighbor who is literally the best Latter-day Saint I’ve ever known cries often, feeling like she is not good enough. From my experience in the church, this is not uncommon. Per Jana’s research judgement was the number one reason women leave the church. While not the reason she left the church, my wife’s biggest increase in happiness after leaving was leaving behind the feeling that she was always failing. 

"Judging" is a tricky thing.  For starters, there's frequently rampant hypocrisy in the statement "don't judge" (like Jana is exhibiting here).  And then there's the factor of "I think somebody is judging me".  And then the judgment Sally imposes on Sally.  

Learning to break free of this cycle is a HARD.  And a certain point the "breaking free" is just acknowledging that it exists but choosing not to care.  

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55 minutes ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

Did you read the article?

Yes.

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It used to be that clothing was policed even down to the order the pieces were put on. And it did produce anxiety. Often the workers weren’t kind just official. 

But that stopped long enough ago that this worker should have gotten the message. Which leads me to think she really was trying to be helpful. It was her lead in phrase about offending that makes me go hmmm. She knew she was taking a risk and should have stopped right there. The lady seated behind her, well that was out of line. I’m not sure what that has to do with the evaluation of their personalities though. Sometimes we all are impulsive, intrusive or rude. 

The change in tone years ago was so obvious that after escorting a converted friend, I remarked to a worker about the remarkable kindness and lack of regulation there was. I was so worried about not doing something “wrong” when helping my friend. She was so excited to hear that I noticed she told me that they had been instructed to stop the rule watching and make sure the patrons had a carefree positive experience. She was eager to tell her co-workers that their efforts were appreciated. 

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2 hours ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

My neighbor who is literally the best Latter-day Saint I’ve ever known cries often, feeling like she is not good enough. From my experience in the church, this is not uncommon. Per Jana’s research judgement was the number one reason women leave the church. While not the reason she left the church, my wife’s biggest increase in happiness after leaving was leaving behind the feeling that she was always failing. 

1

...and her feelings are the Church's fault?  Got it. Tell me how emotionally mature that position is?

Who is always responsible for our own feelings of this caliber?  

Edited by Storm Rider
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2 hours ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

My neighbor who is literally the best Latter-day Saint I’ve ever known cries often, feeling like she is not good enough. From my experience in the church, this is not uncommon. Per Jana’s research judgement was the number one reason women leave the church. While not the reason she left the church, my wife’s biggest increase in happiness after leaving was leaving behind the feeling that she was always failing. 

True knowledge of the Law inevitably leads to either despair or the atonement. Well, except for the rare person who is stupid enough and/or not self-aware enough to believe they are living the Law perfectly.

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17 hours ago, Calm said:

 From what I have heard temple workers are trained to try and help patrons be comfortable, not to be sticklers.

I think the only rabid sticklers now are those very old temple workers from the old school of being more strict and quick to make corrections. I think the recent changes to the temple ordinance is proof of the fact that things don't have to be so perfect.  What is important is to have a good spiritual experience and to make the covenants between us and God.

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12 hours ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

Did you read the essay?

No, I was turned off by the reasoning and didn't feel like I wanted to read more that would likely wallow in it.  I should have.

I have read it now.  I wonder how much her sense of being judged affected her interpretation of what was going on and even what she heard....and what she chose to write.  My reaction is "this feels staged".  It is a perfect little vignette to frame her information about women feeling judged...and it just managed to happen to her this week involving multiple judgmental women. (Yes, I understand the possibility that the experience brought the info into her mind rather than the info leading to the way the story is told, including the need to make it in the here and now.)

I wonder if Reiss added some touches to increase the impact of her story, made explicit what she believed the other was thinking. Given the current rules about veil use, I find it highly unlikely that a temple worker would assume that misplacement could invalidate an ordinance.  I find it more likely the woman was focused on helping her to be comfortable because in her experience when the veil is messed up it is uncomfortable (it is very uncomfortable for me unless pretty perfectly placed) and at most making a joke to defuse any insecurities the patron might have over the impact of the misplacement/twisting.

I have a major bias against stories like this because I have a few friends and relatives who are good storytellers and invariably they have added details to make it more interesting or to get the point across.  Often it ends up being the story they preferred would have happened than much of what actually did when I have had knowledge of the experience.  Now some make this clear and generally everyone has fun with it, but others don't care if listeners take it as fact even when pointed out how it might affect the perception of and therefore the feelings of those involved.  

I get suspicious of stories when everything falls into perfect place leaving no wiggle room for the writer to be wrong in their evaluation of a situation (which is relatively rare in real life in my experience) and in this case the comment about invalidation did that for me.  I can buy a patron concerned about another's twisted veil thinking it might be very uncomfortable or even being distracted by the messiness themselves or a worker overly focused on getting things just right or hyperfocused on making a patron more comfortable to the point of not noticing how uncomfortable she is getting...those kinds of things are common enough experiences.  But all the dominos of the story leading up to the crowning touch of a serious concern about invalidation?

Reiss is a good storyteller, an excellent writer, who understands the emotional impact of a personal experience.  I find it much more probable she polished the story up than she ran into one of the few temple workers who believes veil placement could affect the value of the ordinance.  (And if she was so uncertain, why didn't she ask for the name so she could check and if found to invalidate, it could be repeated?)  

When it comes to these practically perfect for the point stories, I  generally look at what the point is rather than the story for my own judgments about the value of the story and the aim of the storyteller.  And I also think of the people involved and how they will feel having been used as a 'visual aid' in what amounts to objectifying them, not trying to understand them.  When it ends up feeling like a caricature, they lose me.

And I do recognize my own bias is the reason I find her story more fiction than fact by the end of it.  I suspect there are others out there who read it and feel it happened to them.

PS:  I feel the same way about practically perfect stories told the same way across any pulpit, church or news media, or everyday blog.

Edited by Calm
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1 hour ago, JAHS said:

I think the only rabid sticklers now are those very old temple workers from the old school of being more strict and quick to make corrections. I think the recent changes to the temple ordinance is proof of the fact that things don't have to be so perfect.  What is important is to have a good spiritual experience and to make the covenants between us and God.

In your opinion, among the old sticklers, do anyone of them see things being 'off' as invalidating an ordinance or is it more often about respecting the ordinance (similar to the reasoning of wearing your best clothes to church) or something else.

It seems unlikely to me that a belief ordinances can be invalidated by such things would last long as they would be going through the patrons tweaking placements out of concern (given what I see in the crowd at an endowment) if they were the least committed to the purpose behind the ordinances, noticed by the other workers or supervisors, and when explaining their concerns, would be informed of the correct information.

Edited by Calm

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1 hour ago, Calm said:

In your opinion, among the old sticklers, do anyone of them see things being 'off' as invalidating an ordinance or is it more often about respecting the ordinance (similar to the reasoning of wearing your best clothes to church) or something else.

It seems unlikely to me that a belief ordinances can be invalidated by such things would last long as they would be going through the patrons tweaking placements out of concern (given what I see in the crowd at an endowment) if they were the least committed to the purpose behind the ordinances, noticed by the other workers or supervisors, and when explaining their concerns, would be informed of the correct information.

Some of them might wrongly feel that it would invalidate the ordinance if it is something that could have been corrected when noticed but not corrected. But if it did invalidate the ordinance think of all the times such things went unnoticed and uncorrected. Are all those ordinances invalid and the person's soul lost because of it?  I don't think so.  I  once accidentally put my robe on inside out and didn't realize it till the endowment was almost over. I felt a little stupid but I did not at all think the ordinance was invalidated. I said all the right  words and made all the required promises and covenants with God. 
The main reason the temple workers might want to help patrons do the right things is to make sure there is order in the house of God. We are all equal in the sight of God and that is why we all wear the same clothes do the same things and say the same words.  Some might be a little more fanatic at keeping that order compared to others. 

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6 minutes ago, JAHS said:

Some might be a little more fanatic at keeping that order compared to others

And that doesn't not surprise me at all.

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