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Everything posted by BlueDreams

  1. I'd likewise be worried about the defaulting. And there would still be the problem that splitting them would be a little different. Like would these classes still be age specific? If they were, would you just have a beehive/laurel class if there weren't mia maids. If there was one class would they all be mia maids. Or would you all the girls to keep a title and just let it be known that girls in this age group would be here and another age there. It would render the names even less meaningful in my opinion. With luv, BD
  2. The ceremonious blessings to me is more important. I really wish we had more of that to tie them more to a spiritual identity in becoming women/leaders in the church.
  3. i can see that. Honestly it hasn’t personally bothered me. The names weren’t super great to begin with (beehive just doesn’t hold the same spiritual impact as deacon, and I don’t have a clue what a Mia Maid is or what a laurel has to do with anything). Plus the pragmatism beats out the symbol of a group name for me. but it could also be that I’ve been eyeball deep in the concerns of my YW’s group for the last bit that for me it’s really just about real time implications for me on this. There’s less time to think of the abstract meaning/comparison between that and the boys’ programs when focused on 14 or so YW in the midst of toggling the school/social life with a spiritual one. with luv, BD
  4. I’m in the YW’s presidency and we’ve redone how we group the girls 3 times. The first due to the pandemic. We weren’t meeting in person and it made more sense to just have everyone together when we were only doing zoom. Then we did an older and younger class once we were in person more. Now we do a hybrid of the two, to help with both a limitation in leadership support. It’s been extremely helpful IMHO. with luv, BD
  5. Technically this is dependent on if they break up the YW’s into groups or not. They got rid of the names because they wanted to give flexibility for the classes to be set based on the need and circumstances of the ward instead of by a strict age category.
  6. Yeah, not great on my end at least. I haven't ministered and I have no clue who's supposed to minister me or my family. At least for myself, I do blame covid. And then my body crapping on me. I've enjoyed ministering in the past and want to get back into it once I get a few other more pressing things back in order.
  7. Probably not. I listen to Charlie’s podcast “questions from the closet” (which I highly recommend) where he talks openly about his spiritual and religious experiences in the context of his co-host and guests, largely surround LGBT experiences. Also, Charlie is dating Ryan, just an fyi. With luv, BD
  8. The church history museum currently has the church’s international art competition up that happens every 3 years or so. It’s a really good exhibition this year. It gives a little currently cultural window into the experience of church by (albeit artistic) members. It’s right across the street from temple square and the conference center.
  9. ::Shrugs:: we have a different history and demographic than you. One that entails often communities favoring a specific religion and where "religious diversity" is still largely within a christian framework followed distantly by "nones." Not just in numbers but in policies that often effected who could share their religious identity without repurcussions. Even now, in certain communities affiliation can still be a means to judge one's capacity to opine or be taken seriously or show religious expression. I experienced that first hand more than once. It's not too hard to see why that's led to a policy that keeps religion and state more separated. I would love for our community to be healthily religiously pluralistic. Some of my treasured memories include experiencing said pluralism and learning from others not of my faith. But we're not. And its easy for us to slide from religious liberty/pluralism to religious entitlement and subjugating our spiritual framework as a moral and community litmus test. With luv, BD
  10. They were already headed in that direction pre-raid and they were less isolated and more disperse pre-warren...which is why it's hard to know how much less isolated they would have been and how much their practices would have stayed less extreme in what was already an extreme assertion (the spiritually essential nature of polygamy). The website @webbles gave several practices within the FLDS that increased the likelihood that a Warren Jeffs type man could move in. It created a structure over time that hyper-monopolized power within the sect...to the point that the church decided your family. And by church, it was really one man. This came about with massive shifts in their church structure....which likely made other changes and failed prophecies easier to swallow IMHO. If they were less separated, maybe there would have been more who peeled away from the church. But I doubt it. And some of their beliefs would inevitably lead to at least some cruel practices. For example, the being worthy of the highest degree of the CK is when you have 3 wives. That practice inevitably pushes the age of marriage for women down and the number of single men up. The dynamic of major age gaps would reinforce sexist power dynamics. Since higher authorities had lowkey harems this was even more to cause unstable social practices. Polygamy in just about every society that's ever practiced it has to remain a small subsection of the population at any given moment for the simple factor of numbers. There's a near equal amount of men to women most of the time. With luv, BD
  11. This part I really wonder about this one. The degree of misogyny is by no means similar in all groups. I wonder how one became this hyper patriarchal while other groups maintained at least some relative balance on this.
  12. This time period in the church is also not my forte. I found an article in Slate that does mention the church in the lead up to the raid. There are some errors...like the fact that there were a few excommunications earlier than mentioned. I'm also coincidentally reading Saint 3 write now and am on the chapters right before this raid discussing the difficult work of actually kicking out the polygamy entirely. Both to me points to a more complicated relationship between church-government-polygamist families/groups. The government basically clipped the church both in forms of representation and soon via prosecution, which is what led to the first manifesto. The church changes policy to limit polygamy. The larger public/government hones in on the loopholes with political/social ramifications for the saints. The church officially blocks all new marriages in the 2nd manifesto. Newspapers and the public find new marriage on the local level and magnifies them to large systemic promotion of polygamy. The church starts to more strongly enforce policies on those who continue to refuse to abide the church's policies. Those who insist on polygamy as a higher law who have either left our are excommunicated from the mainstream church begin to separate and form their own groups. The polygamist groups begin to isolate more and continue practice what they see as a "higher" law or way. Which also means the main way people outside these isolated communities begin to interact with them is by the problems that come from them in a larger society that is strongly biased against them and a larger church they're disaffiliated from who often pays the consequences for their reputation. The raid was the 3rd and biggest one on a group that was already starting to isolate strongly under a belief of the righteous against the wicked. This fortified this, though according to the article (and probably the doc, though it touches pre-warren era lightly) this was reducing a little in terms of work and geographic location, as there was a large group that lived in SLC pre-warren. The impulse to isolate, rigid teachings, and generational heritage made it easy for Jeffs to keep pushing the group into further cultic behavior and to leave abusive/dysfunctional behaviors unchecked. https://slate.com/human-interest/2008/04/the-legacy-of-an-infamous-1953-raid-on-a-polygamous-enclave.html With luv, BD
  13. I binged it. Echoing the interesting part. I think the thing that I pulled me was how this evolved. To me it showed the potential weakness of a small tight and insular community. This likely couldn't happen as easily in a larger more spread out one. But overall it was a good watch. There were parts of me that wished for more of the "other side" per se. More of the stories from those that are still in it. I want to know how they processed this. How they see their community at this point, etc. But that's a story I'll probably never get. With luv, BD
  14. Sure. It's not super easy if shame's a go-to. But it's based on cognitive behavioral therapy (basicaly identifying and changing thinking errors or maladaptive beliefs), learning to practice self-compassion, and being mindful of when one is falling into a shame hole. Really bad shame patterns I call shame-holes or say they like blackholes because no light or positive messages outside them really can help them escape it. It has to be them learning to take and believe the messages they come up with outside the shame-hole and responding back them for oneself when in them. I've watch more than one well-meaning partner try to bolster them up and wear themselves out before their shaming partners starts to ease out of their shame-hole. If there's shame given from an external source and the person doesn't naturally go to shame, then it's just learning to process the message, see what is actually true (maybe they did something wrong) v what isn't (that they're bad, extreme assumptions, etc). With luv, BD
  15. i agree with calm. For me I would say it’s more of an interplay. How Children see others interact around problems or mistakes can cement or shift their own predispositions to shame or not. Some are more likely to fall into shame than others. shifts in beliefs and cognitions can reduce a shame response. No one can fully “force” one to feel shame. It’s more like strong influences that add up. with luv, bd
  16. I have. Funny enough on the same part about my family. I had a paragraph largely tied to that, going into detail about my relationship with my spouse. When my parents were fighting and things were going badly, I’d take my blessing and read that paragraph again and again to remind myself that this wasn’t what I’d have forever. It’s what I worked towards when fixing some of the baggage I got from said situation. Later in my 20’s and in love with the wrong guy, the same blessing kept me hesitant about him and more cautious while I was with him on and off, since it was apparent he was missing some key traits. That said, There were things I assumed about meeting my husband that I did get wrong. With luv BD
  17. I think we're talking a little past each other on this point. I'm talking more personal nuanced "why's" moreso than abstract conceptual "why's." For example my personal why started as a deep sense that I was missing something and then a knowing of God as I tried to seek what I was missing. My covenants became innately personal at a fairly young age. Fear has a role to play, but it's generally a pretty weak one and one of last resort in the scriptures. That fear only works with some form of personal knowledge or assumption of God. But none of these are exactly how I've seen some of the people I'm picturing when I talked above. Many were doing church due to routine, social assumptions, and misplaced loyalties. A simple example: one I know enjoyed the experience of being praised and went through the motions of covenant making without understanding much more past the expected social stage related to the rite. If it were just that, it may have been workable, but there was more going one. Stuff that takes years of therapy to work through. And without it, many of these rites would get sucked into a space in them not ready to really receive them. I would argue that though both of us went through the same rite, we did not experience or make the same covenant. I made further covenants mindfully, fully committed to God, and with a firm sense of God in my life. They made it out of social expectations, with a strong desire to look good, and with a sense of God but a difficulty really understanding themselves, the experiences they've had, and who God really is. Note, I'm simplifying this. These stories that I'm thinking of are usually complex. There's layers to unpack and these layers often can get enmeshed in seriously unhealthy ways with their religiosity. While in this state, the abstract motivations get warped. They may hyper-focus on fear of punishment, which ends up making any form of love (expressed or received) difficult and tenuous, and hold only tentative hope that they may one day be rewarded for honoring their covenants. They may hope for earthly reward, love praise by their peers, and constantly worry about social punishment. Grief, trauma, social expectations, etc have crowded out healthy spiritual connection to God or the church community. Some to a point that interaction causes severe psychological distress and unhealthy coping behaviors. And in that place covenants can bind them to their dysfunctions, not to God. When these haven't been warped, when there are less drastic soul/mind corrections needed, this advice can work. When there isn't, this advice can fall flat at best and accidently exacerbate problems at worse. I would argue that wasn't actually Adam's starting point. Their starting point was knowing God and being able to differentiate between the Godly and ungodly to a basic degree. This underlined part (among other things) is somewhat what I'm talking about. There are experiences and contexts where Obedience is done in a way that is not good for people. Scrupulosity comes to mind. Some can rearrange this without leaving or "taking a break" from the church. Some can't. I'm not assuming full comprehension, but I'm expecting at least healthy pre-reqs to obedience, as I mentioned with Adam and Eve. I can. I disagree. The context is what we are bring to the covenant. Easy example is cain and able. Able made a covenant in sincerity or faith. Cain....not so much. I'm definitely not saying the people I'm thinking of are pulling a Cain. I'm just pointing out that the context can shift the meaning and impact of a covenant. For example, I've met people who married for definitely the wrong reasons. Just because they were sealed does not mean that the act suddenly shifted the innate problems in the relationship. I would contend that without serious changed in the dynamics (if possible) the act is fairly vacant of promise and meaning. Funny enough, I've given the advice to mom's especially to "take a break" from the kids. Usually because they've become so wrapped up in child care that they've lost a sense of self and other aspects of their lives are struggling. So it's pretty easy for me to think that one may need to "take a break" from the kiddos and give at least some of the obligations to another for a while. Depending on the depth of dysfunction, that may need to be a longer break. With luv, BD
  18. I’m more with @sunstoned on this one. There’s a series of social factors that are making extreme acts seem more justifiable. And it’s not this theory I’ve seen floated that you’re referencing in bold. In the US we have several problems coming to a head: a national governing body that is becoming more and more dysfunctional to the point that major concerns go unanswered and have been for a long time Greater social stratification on wealth and ideology especially. In so much that the “other side” are more and more seen as a threat in aggregate and the regular person as powerless compared to the rich. a sense of causes that would lead to death or the end of something deemed essential to ones rights/liberty…unless the people directly act (because again governing sources often won’t…or will act in a way that further entrenches/enables a problem) personally the bolded theory seems a stretch at best. It’s placing pro-life moral frameworks over a single group causing largely major vandalism and building damage as being okay with killing in general. For one that’s not how very pro-choice people see it. They distinguish the born and unborn in terms of personhood and then prioritize the woman’s needs and concerns over the fetus. Whether one agrees or disagrees with this framework still means that pro-choice people would not be likely to start committing violent acts of born humans anymore than a meat eater would naturally be more prone to mass shootings since they’re willing to endorse the mass slaughter of animals. after all any form of violence begets violence and if one is willing to kill one form of life for yourself than it’s a matter of time that you’d be willing to kill other forms of life. With luv, BD
  19. I'm linking these together because they both tie to the purpose of what one is doing. Why do you personally keep the commandments? What's the point of the covenants? What is the purpose in them? for me, most of my covenants I firmly believe and see a purpose in them. Even the ones I'm not the best at (looking at you fasting). At varying points in my life they've become valuable and foster my spiritual growth and development. They make me a better person. More like my Savior. The people I'm thinking of often don't have the same purpose and understanding of the covenants they made as I do. Some people have no answer to this and just tell me it's what they're supposed to do. Some have a really warped belief around their purpose. Some have lost a sense of meaning due the negative experiences they've had that piled up on them. To me, if the covenant is not working to bring one to a greater wholeness through Christ, it's lost its savor and is good for nothing....it just becomes meaningless ritual. And until other more basic things have realigned in a healthier manner it's going to continue to be at best worthless. At worse it can actually be fairly harmful as they expend energy on things like what I call "checklist jesus" and not on the needed healing From what you describe I assume you also find deeper purpose to the commands you follow or strive to live by. That's wonderful. In that circumstance it makes sense that it would be unjustifiable to deliberately break them. But for those I've come to know, that is not their context. On external sources: that can be helpful...it can also be neutral...and it can also be harmful if the voices around them have biases, ignorance, pride, etc that get in the way of reaching the person. It can also be a problem if one relies too much on external sources to figure out what you should be doing within your personal stewardship. Or one assumes you can't disagree or say no to a leader's advice or guidance. I'm not opposed to external sources. Heck for many I've been an external source. But others have varying experiences that can make this not as much of a slam dunk when managing complex issues. I believe I've mentioned before that I'm personally leery of relying too much on authority figures. This stems from my likely very different experiences in life than your own. So with the bold, this would not be the response I'd have. I would want to know where they got their idea, the evidence they held for it, how much their stewardship actually covers this area they're coming to me about, and my degree of trust in the person/how well they actually know me to give me said advice or caution. And I won't take it as something I should do unless there's something outside of them (aka the Spirit) backing it up. if some one gives me a stated assumption about god, life, or anything inbetween I instinctually seek for exceptions. In short this general orientation is not mine. It doesn't work for me and never has. When I'm nudged to follow it I can grow resentful. I'm not pointing this out to say I'm right and your wrong. Both likely have strengths and weaknesses. I'm saying it to not that the same orientations (active members) may have very different experiences, perspectives, and approaches to being such. Side note: I understand that yourself is the most accessible person to grasping concerns and such. But for this issue, it's not really about seeing if I would do what they did. But moreso if I can place myself into their circumstance and truly see the same thing as they do. I remember one of my first ex-lds clients that I had. I'd work extra hard to make sure they felt heard by this active LDS member....which meant diving deep into their experience. This one suffered from severe scrupolosity as a member bolstered by a family culture that promoted a more rigid interpretation of religious practice. It caused them to crack, big time. I remember thinking that if I had their experiences maybe I too could have ended up like them. But I didn't and still don't and so my story around faith ended up very different. I don't think their views are necessarily all together right. But that's also sorta the point. On the last point the secrecy or slow reveal of a "taking a break" doesn't tell me much. People do it for a dozen reasons dependent on their cirucmstance. Covenants, temples, commandments, ritual, theology, etc. You name it and I can probably think of an example of someone I've known or needed to work with. I'm only so much speaking on abstractions. The concept may be, but its based on many people that I've known and often been there to help. With luv, BD
  20. I didn't take her analogy so literally. I had a professor who used contemplating a divorce like contemplating an amputation...there may be circumstances that it's necessary but it shouldn't be your go to for a broken leg. I don't take this or BB's analogy to mean there will be physical damage from separating. I also am not picturing something like too much genealogy work. That would better suit your analogy. I'm picturing some of the messier experiences. Severe scrupulosity, certain forms of trauma that at points had religious implications or concerns, toxic community cultures where they've lost sight of what they actually believe in the expectations of a rigid local community, a system of rigid/maladaptive beliefs about their faith, experiences of depression, anxiety, or other things are skewing religious experiences to be extremely difficult, Family ruptures that leave church painful for a while. Etc. In these cases it's not just that a part of a religious experience has gone a little too far or run a muck, but that large swaths of a church experience has become sources of pain, disorder, and grief that may be simply intolerable for a time. Until other parts start to heal, a break sincerely may be a needed step to something healthier than what they currently are in. For some that break may need to be long term. Obviously I don't think all or even a majority of cases are like that. But I think people would be surprised by how common these experiences can be. And it's impossible to tell if theirs is more the type of your mothers or more the type of something seriously out of step. Not until you're closer and can dive more into their story. I can picture and have seen people assume a position that they're "taking a break" from church in these circumstances more than once. With luv, BD
  21. It may depend the degree of problem. For many of the ones I was thinking of (which bb was responding to) cancer would still be a fair analogy. As in the routine, perspectives, relationships they had around church were super unhealthy and needed a more extreme solution to manage it. If you stuck with the exercise or dietary habits, the would be ones that were starting/had an extremely imbalanced form of routine or beliefs around this that was at the very least out of balance (doing too much or rigidly following an elaborate plan) or veering to straight up disorder. note: these are not all cases of people who leave or “take a break.” I’m not sure what percentage i’d consider them, since one likely wouldn’t know without being really close to their difficulties with church. I’ve just seen them enough to recognize that sometimes it’s a blessing “take a break” to stop unhealthy patterns around one’s religious practice. These would not be ones who following the analogy just decide hiking isn’t for them and swimming’s a better fit. with luv, BD
  22. Or that he'd simply share the gospel in his general life online. Every member a missionary and all that jazz...
  23. Yeah I've never heard that and my blessing personally doesn't look like that. (it's 2 pages back and front...so 3.3 pages all together). Once you get that long blessings do tend to get more specific and mine also tends to have some repetitious language. So either short and succinct are super relative or that may not be consistent advice....or that advice has changed recently. What's generally in a blessing has shifted over the years. Personally I'm glad my PB doesn't fit that. My PB doesn't directly give me guidance per se, but it's been a source of guidance and support at important points in my life. I would prefer a Patriarch just prepare themselves spiritually, we understand that something may not come to pass as we initially picture them, and that length doesn't say much about who you are as a person or the importance of your mission. But it's also not my stewardship so I don't really care one way or the other. With luv, BD
  24. It may not be fully comparable but personally my experience with it has given me greater compassion for those who may need to step away for less obvious reasons. Early on when everyone took a big step away from church, I received a small prompting from the spirit that told me we would not be going to church in person for a while. I assumed at the time it was for several weeks, maybe months. It’s been over 2 years since I’ve fully attended my meetings in person. We don’t do Sunday school and there isn’t an option to attend online in my ward, I’ve been more or less active with my calling depending the pandemic numbers, no matter what my stake/ward is currently doing. My reason is obvious so we don’t get direct pushback. I also miss fuller community beyond just the girls/leaders in YW. This break won’t last much longer past my daughter getting her shots. But I also have seen the difference between my personal worship patterns and my church version. And it’s increased my empathy to paths that look very different from my own…where God may be just fine with them taking a break. with luv, BD
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