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Joseph's treatment of Emma


sjdawg

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Joseph tried to talk Emma reason, but she would not listen and crabbed a broom and hit Joseph with it several times chasing him around the house. Then Joseph threw himself on the floor and started to cry aloud kicking the floor with his heels and hands in trantum.... womans fury is terrible! ;)

Noooo I ment to say

He looked at Emma who was not able to calm down for a reasonable talk and shouted: Shut up woman, go in your room! I am THE MAN in this house! And Emma, startled of his unusuall outburst backed into the bedroom... turning at the door she whispered ... but I am the neck that turns the head...

It tok Joseph 10 whole tree trunkpieces to chop before he was calm enough to go in, where a warm cup of herbtea was waiting.... along with her beloved Emma... sigh :P

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From everything I have read about Joseph Smith (both for and against mormonism) I have never seen anything that would lead me to believe that abuse was characteristic of Joseph Smith.

What do you think the harsh measures were? Verbal Chastisement?

I can't remember if it's in RSR, but I did hear Richard Bushman comment at a presentation that one of the things he learned about Joseph Smith through his study was that Joseph had a much greater temper than we might think (but he was also quick to forgive if the person showed humility and contrition).

Obviously that isn't a side of him that the Church ever presents, so it's not something we'd think about.

So it may have been "verbal chastisement". I wouldn't presume anything beyond that without better evidence.

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Joseph tried to talk Emma reason, but she would not listen and crabbed a broom and hit Joseph with it several times chasing him around the house. Then Joseph threw himself on the floor and started to cry aloud kicking the floor with his heels and hands in trantum.... womans fury is terrible! ;)

Noooo I ment to say

He looked at Emma who was not able to calm down for a reasonable talk and shouted: Shut up woman, go in your room! I am THE MAN in this house! And Emma, startled of his unusuall outburst backed into the bedroom... turning at the door she whispered ... but I am the neck that turns the head...

It tok Joseph 10 whole tree trunkpieces to chop before he was calm enough to go in, where a warm cup of herbtea was waiting.... along with her beloved Emma... sigh :P

And here I thought he took her home and drowned her in a bucket, then ate her liver and buried the rest of her body.

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I don't see any reason to think that this was anything more than a war of words between them--maybe even a shouting match. If I were Emma, I'd have been steaming mad. I can't imagine that any woman wouldn't be angry under those circumstances and if a woman says she wouldn't be, I'm not sure I believe her. Emma was described as being "high spirited" and she was no doormat. I think that is probably part of what attracted Joseph to her in the first place.

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Emma and Joseph had a typical marriage filled with love and hot tempers. Both seem to live passionately. Emma and Joseph had a happier marriage during the kirkland period than during the Nauvoo period. Much of the anger was centered during the nauvoo period when joseph began to be sealed to many women. Joseph became a christian revolutionary in the nauvoo period. In fact, he stated that he wanted to revolutionize the world. And I believe that this was said during the nauvoo period. But when one reads Joseph's sermons and words, one can read the passion. And emma was no different. She was a passionate frontier woman who had difficulties with her husband during the nauvoo period. But they stuck together regardless and emma never denied her husbands prophethood regardless of the fights they had about polygamy. If emma believed the Joseph to be a fraud, she would have spilled the beans during the nauvoo period. But she didn't.

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I don't see any reason to think that this was anything more than a war of words between them--maybe even a shouting match. If I were Emma, I'd have been steaming mad. I can't imagine that any woman wouldn't be angry under those circumstances and if a woman says she wouldn't be, I'm not sure I believe her. Emma was described as being "high spirited" and she was no doormat. I think that is probably part of what attracted Joseph to her in the first place.

And if she believed her husband to be a fraud, she would have come clean. I think that Joseph knew that section 132 was going to be a problem to emma. I think that he had his brother show her the revelation and she wasn't a happy camper to my knowledge. I think that they set a good example for all marriages. There will be disagreements and at times, these disagreements will enlist passionate arguing. But they still stuck together seeing the bigger picture.

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I can't remember if it's in RSR, but I did hear Richard Bushman comment at a presentation that one of the things he learned about Joseph Smith through his study was that Joseph had a much greater temper than we might think.... Obviously that isn't a side of him that the Church ever presents, so it's not something we'd think about.

Well, it's certainly in church history. Truman Madsen mentioned a number of times when Joseph throttled someone...William comes to mind. You won't find it in any of the fictionalized accounts, which is where most Mormons apparently get their knowledge about the prophet. Does that mean Joseph ripped Emma's arm out of her socket and beat her senseless with it? I doubt it, but I think he was more than capable of asserting himself when angered. Especially with Emma behaving like she was.

If Emma didn't want Flora having the watch, she should have taken it up with Joseph, not Flora. What did Emma want with the watch, anyway, other than to deprive Flora of it? If Joseph was sealed to Flora, I don't know what sort of arrangement it was or what Emma had agreed to, but she was aware of the revelation on plural marriage. In truth, her wish was most likely to deprive Flora of Joseph and that the watch had little to do with it. I can understand her anger, but no one really liked the idea of plural marriage, but it was something no one had any choice about.

.

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I can't remember if it's in RSR, but I did hear Richard Bushman comment at a presentation that one of the things he learned about Joseph Smith through his study was that Joseph had a much greater temper than we might think (but he was also quick to forgive if the person showed humility and contrition).

Obviously that isn't a side of him that the Church ever presents, so it's not something we'd think about.

So it may have been "verbal chastisement". I wouldn't presume anything beyond that without better evidence.

FWIW The book on Emma (I cant remember the title maybe just Emma).It remarks that in the journals of their children it mentioned Joseph as the calm one and Emma the one who didn't spare the rod.

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FWIW The book on Emma (I cant remember the title maybe just Emma).It remarks that in the journals of their children it mentioned Joseph as the calm one and Emma the one who didn't spare the rod.

That would not surprise me, she had to spend the most time with, and children seem to have been Joseph's soft spot.

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Well, it's certainly in church history. Truman Madsen mentioned a number of times when Joseph throttled someone...William comes to mind. You won't find it in any of the fictionalized accounts, which is where most Mormons apparently get their knowledge about the prophet. Does that mean Joseph ripped Emma's arm out of her socket and beat her senseless with it? I doubt it, but I think he was more than capable of asserting himself when angered. Especially with Emma behaving like she was.

.

Ivan J Barret taught about the temper too. I learned about it from my father who heard it personally from Barret.

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I can't remember if it's in RSR, but I did hear Richard Bushman comment at a presentation that one of the things he learned about Joseph Smith through his study was that Joseph had a much greater temper than we might think (but he was also quick to forgive if the person showed humility and contrition).

Obviously that isn't a side of him that the Church ever presents, so it's not something we'd think about.

So it may have been "verbal chastisement". I wouldn't presume anything beyond that without better evidence.

Yes, in Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, Dr. Bushman gives some excellent insight into the character/personality of the Prophet. Here are some excerpts:

When harmony eluded him, he lashed out. (page 187)

. . .Joseph's angry responses conflicted with the harmony and brotherhood he prized. Through the fall of 1835, he engaged in a series of small quarrels, domestic disturbances, and squabbles. He did not rise above the fray in the serene majesty of his calling. . . . His own sensitivity entangled him in further rows, repeatedly recycling resentment and reconciliation. (page 295)

While Joseph was sensitive to the spirit of others, he may have been tone-deaf to the spirit of his own words. Unable to bear criticism, he rebuked anyone who challenged him. (page 296)

By his own account, Joseph frequently felt cast down, lacking, or falling short, never enjoying all that he needed, whether wealth or spiritual assurance. (page 234)

Richards [Joseph's personal secretary) seemed a little uncomfortable when Joseph began to boast. . . . Richards noted that Joseph was criticized for lack of meekness. . . .he cut lose with extravagant comments about his mastery: "I am a Lawyer. I am [a] big lawyer and comprehend heaven, earth, and hell to bring forth knowledge which shall cover up all Lawyers and doctors." (page 484)

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And if she believed her husband to be a fraud, she would have come clean. I think that Joseph knew that section 132 was going to be a problem to emma. I think that he had his brother show her the revelation and she wasn't a happy camper to my knowledge. I think that they set a good example for all marriages. There will be disagreements and at times, these disagreements will enlist passionate arguing. But they still stuck together seeing the bigger picture.

Yea I know I always have disagreements in my marriage when I give 16 year old girls gold watches before I marry them, and when I get sealed to them so I can live with them eternally, and then have my brother gives her the news that if she doesn't like it she will be destroyed.

54 And I command mine handmaid, Emma Smith, to abide and cleave unto my servant Joseph, and to none else. But if she will not abide this commandment she shall be destroyed, saith the Lord; for I am the Lord thy God, and will destroy her if she abide not in my law. (D&C 132)

I don't mean this to be sarcastic, but come on, to compare this to the average marriage? If Mormonism is true or untrue, either way this is hardly a example of typical marriage "disagreements". Leaving up the toilet lid, sneaking off to buy a hot dog, leaving my socks inside out inthe hamper...sorry I can't relate.

Mark

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...sorry I can't relate. Mark

Given your demonstrable prejudice, I would be surprised if you could relate to much of anything Joseph experienced. You have a very uncommon knack for not seeing the obvious point (as evinced by this inane response to Why Me), and this for reasons of getting lost amidst the unimportant details--and I don't mean this sarcastically.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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Given your demonstrable prejudice, I would be surprised if you could relate to much of anything Joseph experienced. You have a very uncommon knack for not seeing the obvious point (as evinced by this inane response to Why Me), and this for reasons of getting lost amidst the unimportant details--and I don't mean this sarcastically.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

Emphasis mine, bravo. :P

Sorry for the brief derailment here but I have to say Wade you are fast becoming one of my favorite posters.

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Given your demonstrable prejudice, I would be surprised if you could relate to much of anything Joseph experienced. You have a very uncommon knack for not seeing the obvious point (as evinced by this inane response to Why Me), and this for reasons of getting lost amidst the unimportant details--and I don't mean this sarcastically.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

What was the obvious point Wade?

Personally I believe I can relate to allot of what JS experienced, but it would not be in the context of a inspired prophet, but more a sinful man with human wants and disires. I can say I'm seeing a pattern in our discussions together that your ideology of the LDS faith is oneof a means to the end kind of philosphy, correct me if I'm wrong. In other words there is the 3 fold mission of the Church, and nothing else really matters except for that mission, and how one gets to that understanding doesn't really matter as long as they get there, I don't want an argument, I am trying to understand your general take on the LDS faith.

Mark

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Okay, I have a hard time having all that much respect for Emma Smith. Didn't Brigham Yound accuse her of attempting to murder Joseph twice?

Here's the story:

Joseph won a respite with Emma over plural marriage when she received the Church's highest ordinance, the second anointing, on or shortly before 28 September 1843. She had received her endowment and been sealed to Joseph for eternity the previous spring. But by November marauders on the outskirts of the city had begun looting, burning, and whipping. Emma and Joseph's relationship again showed signs of intense stress and they both suffered from ill health. In an 1866 conference address, Brigham Young told this story:
[Joseph] called his wife Emma into a secret council, and there he told her . . . of the time she undertook to poison him, and he told her that she was a child of hell, and literally the most wicked woman on this earth, that there was not one more wicked than she. He told her where she got the poison, and how she put it in a cup of coffee. . . . When it entered his stomach he went to the door and threw it off.

The story seems bizarre. How could Joseph think such a thing? But if he said it, the reasoning goes, it must be true. How could Emma have done such a thing? The evidence strongly suggests that Joseph indeed made the accusation but that he was wrong in concluding that Emma tried to poison him. The episode needs a larger context. Joseph's diary entry of 5 November 1843, describes becoming suddenly ill while eating dinner and vomiting so violently that he dislocated his jaw and "raised fresh blood." He believed he had been poisoned, but recovered enough to attend a "prayer meeting in the hall over the store" that evening.24 This was a meeting of the "quorum of the anointed"--those who had received their endowments--and most likely the "secret council" in which, according to Brigham, Joseph accused Emma of trying to poison him. Joseph's diary records that he and Emma did not dress for the prayer circle that night. Significantly, members did not customarily participate in the prayer circle if they had hard feelings against anyone else in the group.

Joseph would subsequently experience periodic bouts of sudden nausea and vomiting. Many ailments could cause such symptoms, including acute indigestion, food poisoning, ulcers, gallstones, but only poisoning, bleeding ulcers, or (rarely) food poisoning would have led to such an acute episode. Moreover, the 1844 poisons strong enough to cause hemorrhaging in the stomach as rapidly after ingestion as Joseph's diary indicates, would not leave the victim well enough to attend a meeting just a few hours later.

According to Joseph's diary, "domestic concerns" kept him busy the next morning. Perhaps Emma was able to convince her husband that she had not attempted to poison him. The previous evening, according to Brigham, Emma had cried when Joseph lashed out at her. Tears rather than an open defense are in keeping with at least one other occasion when she endured a public rebuke from Joseph. When Joseph was suffering from violent vomiting the next month, he reported that Emma "waited on me, assisted by my scribe, Willard Richards, and his brother Levi, who administered some herbs and mild drinks. I was never prostrated so low, in so short a time, before; by evening was considerably better."

If Emma had convinced Joseph of her innocence in the earlier incident, Joseph apparently did not tell the others at the meeting and Emma remained forever guilty in their minds. Aroet Hale, who heard the accusations later in Utah, wrote in her defense:

a grate meny of the Saints in these Days think that the Prophet wife Emma Hale Smith was a bad Woman that she tried to Poison the Prophet. Their never was a more Dutiful woman than Emma Smith to her husband till after the Prophet had made publick the revelation on Seelestial marrige. He begun to take to himselve Other Wives. This proved a grate trial to her. How meny women is there in Our Day after 30 or 40 years . . . that it Dose not try to the Hartsbare. The prophet Joseph Said that She was a good woman.... Emma wood & did go before Judges Rulers and Govenors to Plead for her Husband. She would have Lade her life down for him.29

"The Emma Smith Lore Reconsidered"

Linda King Newell

Dialogue, Vol.17, No.3, p.93

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What was the obvious point Wade?

Personally I believe I can relate to allot of what JS experienced, but it would not be in the context of a inspired prophet, but more a sinful man with human wants and disires.

This is what you don't get: all the prophets were men with human wants and desires. You obviously aren't too familiar with the OT if you think otherwise. That is what makes what they accomplish through the power of God even more remarkable.

God is the one who refines his prophets and Joseph certainly went through the refiners fire and at the end of his life Joseph had come to a point where he could truly say "I have a conscience void of offense towards God, and towards all men."

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This is what you don't get: all the prophets were men with human wants and desires. You obviously aren't too familiar with the OT if you think otherwise. That is what makes what they accomplish through the power of God even more remarkable.

God is the one who refines his prophets and Joseph certainly went through the refiners fire and at the end of his life Joseph had come to a point where he could truly say "I have a conscience void of offense towards God, and towards all men."

I'm not really sure how to answer with out getting into trouble, I'm towing the line here, so lets just say I do not see that Joseph's behavior was one that was ordained by God, I do not believe that God threatened to destroy Emma if she didn't accept this behavior...do you really believe that his behavior was ordained by God and Emma would have been destroyed if she did not accept it?

Mark

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. . . so lets just say I do not see that Joseph's behavior was one that was ordained by God, . . .

Of course not. We all know that men ordained of God are perfect, no character flaws at all. (unless of course they are a "true Christian" like Markk, right?

I do not believe that God threatened to destroy Emma if she didn't accept this behavior...

Of course not. Because Markk's god would NEVER do anything like that, right?

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I'm not really sure how to answer with out getting into trouble, I'm towing the line here, so lets just say I do not see that Joseph's behavior was one that was ordained by God, I do not believe that God threatened to destroy Emma if she didn't accept this behavior...do you really believe that his behavior was ordained by God and Emma would have been destroyed if she did not accept it?

Mark

DO you see Peters behavior or Pauls behavior or Moses behavior or Abrahams behavior as one being ordained from God? What about Jonah? Markk you can't have your cake and eat it too.

BTW in the OT God destoyed people and turned them into a pilar of salt for much less.

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