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BlueDreams

Temple workers and cultural identity

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2 hours ago, Calm said:

Seriously?  They can be as clean as any other hairstyle.  Given how many women and men go to the temple with hair full of gel or spray and the bouffant styles of past years, I don't see much difference between beehives and dreads.  The important thing is what they mean to him, not what baggage they carry for some.  I am with the guidelines, clean and cared for is enough.

Some of our friends had a daughter that decided to grow dreads. She never washed her hair, ever. After a year or so she finally cut them off because they got too heavy for her. Are you telling me that not washing your hair is clean? Just curious. 

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

Some of our friends had a daughter that decided to grow dreads. She never washed her hair, ever. After a year or so she finally cut them off because they got too heavy for her. Are you telling me that not washing your hair is clean? Just curious. 

Your assumptions can be clarified with simple online research. Your friends who had a daughter who never washed her hair is hardly a fair sample. The good news is, once you learn more, you won’t assume people with dreadlocks are dirty. 

Edited by MustardSeed
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18 minutes ago, MustardSeed said:

Your assumptions can be clarified with simple online research. Your friends who had a daughter who never washed her hair is hardly a fair sample. The good news is, once you learn more, you won’t assume people with dreadlocks are dirty. 

Sanctimonious blather. It would seem you would give up on that. 

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25 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

Some of our friends had a daughter that decided to grow dreads. She never washed her hair, ever. After a year or so she finally cut them off because they got too heavy for her. Are you telling me that not washing your hair is clean? Just curious. 

If she never washed her hair it would be dirty with or without the locs. The issue was not washing her hair, not the locs. 

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2 hours ago, BlueDreams said:
 

1.) I obviously don't think racism is simply perceived. There's a difference in questioning between when people ask about my ethnic heritage and when the questions/comments about heritage come with loaded race-based assumptions. I don't have a problem talking about my heritage. I enjoy my many peoples. And if that's where it ended, it would be an enjoyable and reasonable experience. What I get from  Tekulve in this article isn't about these questions but the ones laden with assumption. Such as assuming that he must be from a foreign country....often' has an assumption about who would immediately be considered american (usually white). For me there are experiences that make me feel more invisible. Such as when I explain my heritage, and they then refer to me only by one side, because they're used to having nice clean racial categories. Or assuming that my experiences as a mixed woman must be difficult because....well I'm mixed (cue tragic mulatto stereotype here). Or assuming who I should or would date based on race rather than personality and interests based on their expectations on dating cross-racially.  I would note that most the racism in UT that I've seen is based more in ignorance and lack of exposure than to open hostility. 

 

2.)  That would be a good question to ask him. But a large part of the african diaspora and african-american heritage entail reclaiming experiences and identity that were forcefully lost due to forced migrations, slavery, colonization, and imposing white standards of grooming and dress onto them. Locs are part of the natural hair movement and efforts to reclaim a heritage that entails a heavy focus on hair and removing the idea that "good hair" is closest to white/straight hair styles. (you can also replace good, with "professional, clean/unkempt, etc" and still have the same ethnocentric value standards shine through)   Again, I can't answer for him specifically, but here is an article and a video about locs and their significance for african americans...from black sources:

Article here: https://www.ebony.com/style/history-dreadlocks/

Lastly assuming equality in an experience and the assumption about cleanliness simply shows a cultural ignorance about black communities and cultures. It's often not the same experience for a black person v white person with a similar hair style. For one, for black people's hair this may be a healthier choice to maintain natural hairstyles v chemical perms/more damaging hairstyles and may link to a cultural and historical experience that's about reclaiming lost heritage. Most white people adopting these styles do it because it looks cool...there's usually little deeper than that to it for them.  

With luv,

BD

Our friend's daughter was white, not black. Her dreads were free form, rather than braids. Even this speaker in the video above seems to distinguish between free form dreadlocks and locs. I have never seen braids of any length on any person appear unclean or unkempt. 

There is a difference between cultural ignorance and simple ignorance or misunderstanding. 

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7 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

Sanctimonious blather. It would seem you would give up on that. 

Excuse me? 

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2 minutes ago, Calm said:

If she never washed her hair it would be dirty with or without the locs. The issue was not washing her hair, not the locs. 

Calm, do you understand what I mean when I say free form dreadlocks? No one that wears free form washes their hair regardless of race. It is impossible to wash because of the of the purpose of the free form dreadlocks. The point is, if this young lady wanted to work in the temple, I would guess the TP would say no and he should say no due to cleanliness of wearing free form dreadlocks. 

When I looked at the picture of the young man, he appeared to be wearing free form dreadlocks, which I know you don't wash. Based on that, cleanliness is why it would be appropriate to say, "No". Saying yes to a temple worker wearing free form dreadlocks would be a double standing, not racist. 

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1 minute ago, MustardSeed said:

Excuse me? 

I will try once - read all my posts. Then just stop with the snide comments.

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5 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

Calm, do you understand what I mean when I say free form dreadlocks? No one that wears free form washes their hair regardless of race. It is impossible to wash because of the of the purpose of the free form dreadlocks. 

Sorry, this is inaccurate. 

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(Also, am I a sanctimonious blatherer? I mean, I’ve been accused of worse, but I’m always open to a new adventure.) 

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26 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

Our friend's daughter was white, not black. Her dreads were free form, rather than braids. Even this speaker in the video above seems to distinguish between free form dreadlocks and locs. I have never seen braids of any length on any person appear unclean or unkempt. 

There is a difference between cultural ignorance and simple ignorance or misunderstanding. 

Freeform locs are usually still washed....they’re just not brushed out or purposely patterned. The matting creates the locs over time. That’s on her for not washing. Most do, black or white. 

 

With luv, 

BD

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10 hours ago, Storm Rider said:

LOL - you make me smile. 

One of the lessons I learned while serving in the temple was that as a temple worker, our actions should simply be to facilitate the experience for others. Our actions, demeanor, etc. should never detract from the experience of each patron. The moment that our actions become about us - as in the individual - then we detract from the session. 

For these reasons, our jewelry should not be noticeable or remarkable, our attire should closely resemble others, our hair styles should be uniform and conservative, etc. What is conservative and culturally acceptable in the US may very easily not be ideal in Tonga, Japan, China, India, or any other part of the world. 

If we are going to serve in the temple, then serve in the temple 100%. It is not a place for satisfying a personal agenda. If that is what is most important for an individual, then serving the temple is probably something that should be delayed until such time as serving others becomes of primary importance. 

I have also been taught that one must have the same standards as missionaries regarding facial hair etc

Is that no longer the case or have those standards been lifted for missionaries?

I have seen no evidence of that, and simply wonder why the standards are not consistent if indeed they are different for missionaries and temple workers.

I joined the church now about 40 years ago and the standard of the stake I was in at the time was "no facial hair" and a conservative hair style IF you had a calling that required attendence at PEC or Ward Council meetings.    I had to cut my hair and remove a mustache I had since I was 16 years old. 

But I have never heard that missionary guidelines for grooming have been changed so that they can be different than temple worker standards?

Anybody know?

 

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Posted (edited)

Missionaries are fulltime representatives of the Church to nonmembers.  Having them easily recognizable makes sense especially in this day and age where letting strangers into your home is less common.

Temple workers are working with members and should imo have pretty much the same standard for the rest of the members in the pews sitting next to you, with the addition of expected cleanliness and cared for due to it being the temple.

Edited by Calm
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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

I have also been taught that one must have the same standards as missionaries regarding facial hair etc

Is that no longer the case or have those standards been lifted for missionaries?

I have seen no evidence of that, and simply wonder why the standards are not consistent if indeed they are different for missionaries and temple workers.

I joined the church now about 40 years ago and the standard of the stake I was in at the time was "no facial hair" and a conservative hair style IF you had a calling that required attendence at PEC or Ward Council meetings.    I had to cut my hair and remove a mustache I had since I was 16 years old. 

But I have never heard that missionary guidelines for grooming have been changed so that they can be different than temple worker standards?

Anybody know?

 

I first went through the Temple in the late 1990s, the officiator had a full beard

Edited by provoman

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4 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

Same. I don't get what hair style has to do with the calling. I told my husband they'd have to change to policy if they called him to something like that, because I wouldn't agree to it :P. I love his hair longer and his face with a little scruff. 

 

With luv,

BD

In the '60's  among white folks, having long hair was an act of protest as is clear if you listen to the songs of the day.  Hippies were considered dirty and unkempt and were called "freaks".  We were trying to get back to nature and strip away the commercial use of things like deodorant etc for our own "natural" scents, affirming our own natural pheromones.  In other words we "stunk" by the corrupt standards of the surrounding military/industrial capitalist culture of the day.  ;) 

https://www.singout.org/sohistry.html

Quote

 

Silber reports that at the height of the folk revival, Bob Dylan was asked about commercial sponsorship of folk song programs. (The first televised airing of Hootenanny, hosted by that noted folk impresario Jack Linkletter came in April 1963.) “We’re not singing folk-songs in order to sell soap,” Dylan quipped, “Hell, we don’t even buy soap!” By the mid-1960s, folk as a commodity was making a lot of people very, very rich, and some others, very, very nervous. In a show of solidarity, The Kingston Trio, Joan Baez and Peter, Paul & Mary refused to appear on Hootenanny because of the show’s blacklisting of performers such as Pete Seeger and The Weavers.


 

I was a freak myself and proud of it.  I sought out other freaky folks and felt most comfortable around people like myself.  

So I think that is how it got started.   People now see it as a hair style, but long hair was a formal protest mode especially before about 1967.  Young men could not wear hair longer than covering their collars in my public high school precisely because they were, it was believed, targeting themselves as "troublemakers" and being proud of it.  That is one of the reasons the Beatles became popular at first- they had "long" hair in 1963- 64.

That was me!

Anyway at the time it was not about culture it was about protest and was a deliberate political/moral statement.

I don't know that the church was wrong in making the policy, but don't judge those times by the standard of these times!  It really was a much simpler black and white world- unfortunately in most cases- than today.

It was very polarized.  You were on one side or the other, and in that way today is similar unfortunately.

Edited by mfbukowski
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2 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

don't judge those times by the standard of these times! 

I think more are concerned about judging these times by those times.  We would still be in one piece garments if that was by the same time standard.

Edited by Calm
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12 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

This story was a bit of a big deal in some of  the black social groups. Before it could be rectified it caused a number of people to actually call the temple (from what i read) and several were very frustrated with the temple president’s initial decision. But it came with a very positive ending and represents to me a part of the cultural church that could be removed. In our stake there’s still this (dumb) expectation that people with certain male leadership callings must be shaved and hair cut short. 

But beyond hair I think it points to something that i see as a major thrust in President Nelson’s goals and actions: to help better separate church culture from gospel doctrine. I see this in several changes to temple policies to allow more people to serve as temple workers who are otherwise worthy to do so. I also see it in general church initiatives, such as the hymn book, to better represent what people in varying areas view as spiritual. 

Here I see this sometimes when people often extrapolate what happens in Utah or their own individual ward to represent the whole of the church. It can be a nice reminder that our assumptions based on a geographic location may sincerely not hold in another area or even a ward over. 

 

Also liked the quote at the end: The Lord asked us to be one, not to be the same

 

 

https://www.heraldextra.com/news/local/faith/payson-temple-worker-s-hairstyle-opens-bigger-discussion-on-diversity/article_6c57851c-55f5-5d7f-b3ee-d83decf59063.html?fbclid=IwAR05G_ja6GudYFOatfqvmNVS260xPwhXsGUfrTl49HtsdPXDb0IXF1S7c6M

 

Anyways thought i’d share and see what others here thought of the article. 

 

With luv, 

BD 

I am glad with the outcome. And I hope that it helps separate "church culture" from Gospel Doctrine.

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27 minutes ago, provoman said:

I first went through the Temple in the late 1990s, the officiator had a full beard

1- Provo

2- Recent history.  Ya gotta crank it back a bit more to know where the wacky "standards" came from.  ;)

 

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28 minutes ago, Calm said:

I think more are concerned about judging these times by those times.  We would still be in one piece garments if that was by the same time standard.

Perhaps you misunderstood.  I am not affirming either standard anywhere.  My point is about history that if one was a white male in the early 60s that one was making a statement that was probably not in coherence with church standards of behavior.

the 90's were 30 years later

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6 hours ago, Calm said:

Seriously?  They can be as clean as any other hairstyle.  Given how many women and men go to the temple with hair full of gel or spray and the bouffant styles of past years, I don't see much difference between beehives and dreads.  The important thing is what they mean to him, not what baggage they carry for some.  I am with the guidelines, clean and cared for is enough.

With some spikey styles men have, it almost feels like you are putting your hands on a cactus to do an initiatory.  ;)

 

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, provoman said:

I first went through the Temple in the late 1990s, the officiator had a full beard

I was serving in a temple in America as part of my YSA ward when the uniform 'dress and grooming standards' were introduced. It was around the year 2000. They came with a cover letter from the Temple Department explaining that they were a response to the many Saints who had complained about 'inconsistencies' across temples. I rolled my eyes at the time and thought, Modern Israel isn't much removed from ancient Israel. We still like to whinge about stupid things until the Lord satisfies us with kings or onerous rules or whatever else the modern equivalents might be.

Edited by Hamba Tuhan
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3 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

With some spikey styles men have, it almost feels like you are putting your hands on a cactus to do an initiatory.

We have a brother with a massive top-knot who regularly comes to our temple. As one who loves seeing how the gospel is for everyone, I revel in laying my hands on this brother's 'bumpy' head when he shows up with a stack of ancestors he wishes to rescue and bless. The only thing better is when the hands laid atop mine are tattooed, a different shade to mine, or both! :yahoo:

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5 hours ago, Calm said:

Temple workers are working with members and should imo have pretty much the same standard for the rest of the members in the pews sitting next to you ...

Precisely. We have training videos in the temple that show patrons with garish nail varnish, stacks of woven bracelets and coloured hair -- along with the reminder that no one should be turned away for any of these reasons. The training videos that show endowment sessions frequently have bearded men serving as witnesses. This can't be an accident. I keep thinking that one of these days, the disconnect between the images and instructions in these videos and the current 'standards' from the Temple Department are going to unravel ...

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