Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Rain

Women in the scriptures thought exercise

Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, Rain said:

No reason. Just tried to come up with topics you might be assigned for a talk. Thought that would be any easy way to do it. Mind went blank! So I looked at Christlike attributes in Preach My Gospel and at the topical guide.

Yeh, I wouldn't expect an LDS talk to include female prophets.

Share this post


Link to post
58 minutes ago, Calm said:

There is something so definite about it.  

 Judith cut off the head of the drunken Holofernes (Judith 13:1-20), and, during the Bactrian War in 327 B.C., Spitamenes’ wife cut off his head while he slept and then took it to the tent of Alexander the Great.   Cf. the old English epic of Aethelflaed, the Lady of the Mercians.   Such tropes are gathered in Stith Thompson, Motif-Index to Folk-Literature, 1st ed. (1932-1936); 2nd ed. (1955-1958).  Such events take place in real life as well as in fantasy.

Share this post


Link to post
17 hours ago, The Nehor said:

Faith - Ruth

Leadership - Deborah

Knowledge - Queen of Sheba

Wisdom - Rahab

Action in a Calling/Mission - Abish

Strength - Miriam

Testimony - Susanna (does apocrypha count?)

Diligence - Martha

Obedience - Mary, mother of Jesus

Hope - Hannah

And I want to add:

Courage - Jehosheba

Humility/Willing Condescension - Eve (it may seem an inappropriate virtue but my suspicions about the Garden and the Fall put both Adam and Eve right below the Savior in terms of giving themselves up to save others.

 

Thank you very much, The Nehor.

Share this post


Link to post
5 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Yeh, I wouldn't expect an LDS talk to include female prophets.

It all stemmed from someone talking to me about the stripling warrior moms as a comfort and then the thread that someone mentioned them.

I started thinking about how over and over they seem to be the fallback of who we think of as righteous women examples. We do talk about Mary and Eve quite a bit, but we talk about them more as a part of the story, not using them usually as examples to illustrate character traits like we do with the warrior moms and so many of the men. 

I'm sure a great part of this is because there is little said of the women in the scriptures. I get that. Over the last few years though, again and again, people tell me or people talk about moms in their talks using the warrior moms and that has all become quite painful to me as faith does not supersede agency. In essence telling women if they have enough faith then their children will choose righteousness.

So with the use of them twice, one where I was pouring out the pain of my heart and the other in a thread, in less than 24 hours I really started to think about it all.

I wondered why the warrior moms seemed to be the example used and not others all the time. Why do we always share the story where their success is shown by the use of agency of someone else?

We often use Nephi as an example of faith. He got the plates, he built the boat, he made the bow etc. He also counseled Laman and Lemuel, but instead of using the L and L story as a "but if not" example of faith we use it as an example of their agency. 

So with women and constantly using the warrior example we show the strength of their agency through the choices of others and we as women have to break through that and teach ourselves and really try to listen to the Lord that our faith does not fall or grow based on our children's agency and more importantly we cannot change their agency no matter how much faith we have. 

So with this thread I am hoping to help myself and help others use examples of women that will help us be able to readily bring their examples to mind when we give talks or counsel with the women in our lives. If we are thinking about the other examples, if we are searching for the examples, then they will more readily come to mind when those around us need to hear them.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

Okay, I have done this before but seems a good thread for a repeat.

Pop Quiz:

There are only six women mentioned by name in the Book of Mormon. Who are they?

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
19 hours ago, Duncan said:

I like Zelophehad's daughters. Correct me if I am wrong, but Zelophehad was a guy (in Moses' time) with 5 daughters but no male heir. When he died the daughters would bupkus, just due to the fact of being women and they thought that wasn't right. So, they petitioned Moses in front of the Temple and he took the case to God who granted them what they wanted. Otherwise all Zelophehad's stuff would go somewhere else and not to his daughters. In a similar real life situation, we had a Bishop who was impossible to work with. His councilours were the twit twins. His ward council meetings were a total joke. Complaints ran high and even we had Elder Bradley Foster of the 70 attend Stake Conference and taught us how to hold an effective ward council meeting but to no avail. What broke it all open was the RS President basically chewed him out, in a dignified way and then things changed!!!! and good for her for doing so. We couldn't get the ball to roll but she did.

Yeah, the story of Zelophehad’s daughters is a weird oddity I sadly doubt the veracity just due to the timing. The daughters show up and ask what will happen to their inheritance.....which they do not have because the Israelites have not yet entered the Promised Land. Odd to be worried about an unseen inheritance. It also led to a problem because when women married they basically joined their husband’s tribe so the elders told the daughters they had to marry within their own tribe so that the ancestral lands of Manasseh would not be divided. Many suspect the story is there to clarify inheritance laws. Then again it might be true. Stranger things have happened.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
55 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

Okay, I have done this before but seems a good thread for a repeat.

Pop Quiz:

There are only six women mentioned by name in the Book of Mormon. Who are they?

Abish, Eve, Isabel, Mary, Sarah, Saria-- not including Deseret, Dragons, Rahab, Flying Fiery Serpents, and Leah, because they are not human females.

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, The Nehor said:

Yeah, the story of Zelophehad’s daughters is a weird oddity I sadly doubt the veracity just due to the timing. The daughters show up and ask what will happen to their inheritance.....which they do not have because the Israelites have not yet entered the Promised Land. Odd to be worried about an unseen inheritance. It also led to a problem because when women married they basically joined their husband’s tribe so the elders told the daughters they had to marry within their own tribe so that the ancestral lands of Manasseh would not be divided. Many suspect the story is there to clarify inheritance laws. Then again it might be true. Stranger things have happened.

 

would make a great sitcom! it would be like "Designing Women" but of the 2000s

Share this post


Link to post

Vashti is the real hero of the Esther story. And we always leave out Hagar, who had a visitation, probably because it interrupts the narrative of making Abraham and Sarah righteous. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
23 minutes ago, juliann said:

Vashti is the real hero of the Esther story. And we always leave out Hagar, who had a visitation, probably because it interrupts the narrative of making Abraham and Sarah righteous. 

Vashti would be a good example of a woman exercising moral dignity (not wanting to be paraded as a sexual possession in front of her likely drunk husband’s friends, especially if she was instructed to appear unclothed as is often speculated).

Esther did risk her life since she could have been killed for coming before the king without being summoned and she did so in order to save her people from being massacred, so that seems very heroic in my view. 

Hagar is in my list because she listened to the angel sent to her. 

Edited by Calm

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, juliann said:

Vashti is the real hero of the Esther story. And we always leave out Hagar, who had a visitation, probably because it interrupts the narrative of making Abraham and Sarah righteous. 

I thought about Vashti but she did not seem to fit any of the categories. If there was one for self-respect or dignity then she probably would have won. I have a hard time pulling any specific virtues out for Hagar without turning to Islamic texts which provide her with all kinds of reported virtues. In the biblical text as written she gets in arguments with Sarah and obeys an angel.

I do like the theory that Hagár is Keturah and after the death of Sarah she reconciles with Abraham completely but that might just be a fanciful story.

Share this post


Link to post

Hagar trusted the angel in the first case and moved out of passive despair into active faith in the second when God sends a sign of his protection with the spring.  Story ends there for her, but often we have only these snapshots and don’t see long term follow through.  So some inference, but reasonable if we combine the two experiences and assume she was consistent with her responses. 

Edited by Calm

Share this post


Link to post

The story of the mothers of the stripling warriors is a lot more interesting if you stop and consider how it is that the Anti-Lehi-Nephite mothers could make the promise to their sons.  It was not a promise that Nephites made generally.  The Nephite leadership, including the prophets, were as surprised as anyone at the survival of the young men.  If you consider their background, their personal experience includes watching the slaughter of 1000 of their husbands and sons and brothers, who, through their obedience, refused to defend themselves, and were not saved from death.  The key phrase from the story is "We did not doubt our mothers knew it."  So, how did they know? Not from experience, and not from wishful thinking, and not from something that priesthood leaders told them.   Who could have both made and kept such a promise?  There is really only one source that explains it.  They received revelation.  Not their leaders, not the prophets.  The mothers.

I had an essay on this years ago in the Meridian, and another earlier in RBBM v10/2, "Nephite Feminism Revisited."  Something I also had in the Meridian essay was a similar story about a pioneer mother being comforted through a personal answer to a prayer about how she should feel about letting a son join the Mormon battalion.  I think the only reasonable way that the Mothers could have made a viable promise to their sons is because they had prayed about it, and received answers. So the story should not be taken as a general case about obeying with exactness whatever leaders say, but an example of exceptional women doing something exceptional and receiving in consequence, something extraordinary.  I see a connection with the stories of Elijah and the Widow of Zarapeth, as well as of Lehi and Sariah while the sons were gone to Jerusalem, and possibly not going to return.  In all of these cases, these were women who had already offered up everything.  And in their prayers, they could and would likely say that.  "I have offered everything.  Are you going to take my sons?"  The widow of Zarapeth had literally given the last of her food to Elijah because the Lord personally directed her to do so.  Remember that most of Lamanite mothers had likely been on the ground during the slaughter of a thousand of their number.  They knew that the most obedient and faithful could die.  And Sariah had left everything she had in Jerusalem to follow Lehi.   And the mother on the Mormon Trek facing the prospect of a son going to war had also left everything for her faith.

The thing to notice about Sariah is that Nephi tells that particular story, making deliberate allusions to the story of the widow and Elijah as a way of saying, "My mother is like this exceptional, proverbial woman of faith from the scriptures."  If you don't see the allusions, you don't see the point he is making.

I've been pushing this reading for years.  For the lamanite mothers, it was actually an insight from my older brother, that he got while I was working on Nephite Feminism Revisited.  There are institutional reasons why the "exact obedience" message gets passed around by people who would love to have more exact obedience, but the scriptures have a better message about seeking personal revelation, and the circumstances under which it may come.

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

Edited by Kevin Christensen
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

I saw an amateur painting once that depicted the stripling warriors going into battle. It showed in the background their mothers praying and amongst the warriors the spirits of their martyred fathers carrying shields to protect their sons as God repaid them for their faithfulness unto death. The painting was not that good from an artistic quality standpoint but it hit me “in the feels”.

Share this post


Link to post

I just read last night the beginning of the Book of Helaman, I believe, where Pahoran the Second, Pacumeni, and Paanchi, brothers, were getting ready to duke it out for the throne *Cough* judgment seat *cough*. And the text says, these are not all the sons of Pahoran (the elder) because he had many. And I knew that this meant that he also had many wives. So right there I get to start pondering about the women in between those lines.

I also have a great respect for the mother of Limhi. If you have a father such as King Noah, how is it that you turn out a bit sane, as Limhi did? My answer is . . .  because his mother taught and loved him.

Share this post


Link to post
3 minutes ago, Maidservant said:

I just read last night the beginning of the Book of Helaman, I believe, where Pahoran the Second, Pacumeni, and Paanchi, brothers, were getting ready to duke it out for the throne *Cough* judgment seat *cough*. And the text says, these are not all the sons of Pahoran (the elder) because he had many. And I knew that this meant that he also had many wives. So right there I get to start pondering about the women in between those lines.

I also have a great respect for the mother of Limhi. If you have a father such as King Noah, how is it that you turn out a bit sane, as Limhi did? My answer is . . .  because his mother taught and loved him.

Why does having six or seven or even twelve sons necessarily mean multiple wives?

 I also like to imagine Limhi was there in the court where Abinadi called out his dad and Alma fled and that it had a big impact on him.

Edited by The Nehor

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, The Nehor said:

Why does having six or seven or even twelve sons necessarily mean multiple wives?

Of course. That's not where I landed with it, that's all. Feel free.

4 hours ago, The Nehor said:

 I also like to imagine Limhi was there in the court where Abinadi called out his dad and Alma fled and that it had a big impact on him.

Right? He likely was watching every thing.

Share this post


Link to post
6 hours ago, The Nehor said:

I do like the theory that Hagár is Keturah and after the death of Sarah she reconciles with Abraham completely 

Ugh! Why? She was free! She had the status of a freewoman and was the mother of a very prominent man. She chose her own Egyptian daughter in law and likely enjoyed helping raise her many grandchildren. She may have had some affection for Abraham but probably had PTSD from her experience with Sarah!

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
On 9/11/2019 at 12:46 PM, Rain said:

In a couple of weeks I'd like to come back to this and see if it has made a difference in how we think or approach women in the scriptures. These have to be actual women, not just scriptures describing what women are, like the ruby passage.

I just wanted to say thanks for posting this. I kind of went off-book a little and focused exclusively on women who are referenced by name in modern scripture - there's still not that many: Lucy Mack Smith and Joseph's sisters all get referenced in JSH. But other than them, it's pretty much just Emma and one other: Vienna Jacques - assuming you are limiting yourself to people actually alive during the era and not counting references to other women in the scriptures like Eve.

Anyway, after I compiled my list I realized that, aside from Lucy and Emma, I honestly couldn't tell you much of anything off the top of my head about what happened with any of the others. I have to admit, I was a little surprised to see that someone like Vienna, a woman who came to the church as a single lady in her 40's and who ended up being such a great example of obedience, strength, and faith, isn't talked about more. The next time we read through the D&C though, I plan on pointing her out to my daughter as a roll model. Okay, I'll probably bring it up before then. Thanks again. :) 

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
9 minutes ago, Amulek said:

I just wanted to say thanks for posting this. I kind of went off-book a little and focused exclusively on women who are referenced by name in modern scripture - there's still not that many: Lucy Mack Smith and Joseph's sisters all get referenced in JSH. But other than them, it's pretty much just Emma and one other: Vienna Jacques - assuming you are limiting yourself to people actually alive during the era and not counting references to other women in the scriptures like Eve.

Anyway, after I compiled my list I realized that, aside from Lucy and Emma, I honestly couldn't tell you much of anything off the top of my head about what happened with any of the others. I have to admit, I was a little surprised to see that someone like Vienna, a woman who came to the church as a single lady in her 40's and who ended up being such a great example of obedience, strength, and faith, isn't talked about more. The next time we read through the D&C though, I plan on pointing her out to my daughter as a roll model. Okay, I'll probably bring it up before then. Thanks again. :) 

 

I love it that you went to modern scriptures. I don't count that as off book. And now I have to go look up Vienna. 🙂

Share this post


Link to post

Since manuals and conference talks might be looked at some day like we look at the ancient scriptural texts, perhaps we could expand with a subtopic of modern Apocryphal writings (not sure that is the right term...could use religious texts or sacred writings).

Edited by Calm

Share this post


Link to post

I sometimes have it as a thought experiment that if one were to compile a small selection of general conference talks and similar for a book of scripture for future saints, and all else would be lost, which items would make the cut?

1 hour ago, Calm said:

Since manuals and conference talks might be looked at some day like we look at the ancient scriptural texts, perhaps we could expand with a subtopic of modern Apocryphal writings (not sure that is the right term...could use religious texts or sacred writings).

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
6 hours ago, Amulek said:

I just wanted to say thanks for posting this. I kind of went off-book a little and focused exclusively on women who are referenced by name in modern scripture - there's still not that many: Lucy Mack Smith and Joseph's sisters all get referenced in JSH. But other than them, it's pretty much just Emma and one other: Vienna Jacques - assuming you are limiting yourself to people actually alive during the era and not counting references to other women in the scriptures like Eve.

Anyway, after I compiled my list I realized that, aside from Lucy and Emma, I honestly couldn't tell you much of anything off the top of my head about what happened with any of the others. I have to admit, I was a little surprised to see that someone like Vienna, a woman who came to the church as a single lady in her 40's and who ended up being such a great example of obedience, strength, and faith, isn't talked about more. The next time we read through the D&C though, I plan on pointing her out to my daughter as a roll model. Okay, I'll probably bring it up before then. Thanks again. :) 

 

This is not a bad resource: At the Pulpit: 185 Years of Discourses by Latter-day Saint Women (https://www.churchhistorianspress.org/at-the-pulpit?lang=eng)
It's in the Gospel Library app too (history section).

Edited by Nofear
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
On 9/12/2019 at 9:22 PM, katherine the great said:

Ugh! Why? She was free! She had the status of a freewoman and was the mother of a very prominent man. She chose her own Egyptian daughter in law and likely enjoyed helping raise her many grandchildren. She may have had some affection for Abraham but probably had PTSD from her experience with Sarah!

Sarah was dead at that point plus at some point Ishmael and Isaac reconciled to some degree.

Share this post


Link to post
9 hours ago, The Nehor said:

Sarah was dead at that point plus at some point Ishmael and Isaac reconciled to some degree.

Well, by the time Sarah was dead, Hagar would have been at least 65 years old. That's assuming she gave birth to Ishmael at the age of 14. Of course you are free to believe as you like but, as a woman,  I just don't see it from any angle.  🤷‍♀️

Share this post


Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...