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TBM v Jospeh Smith


dirtius maximus

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I do not understand the term TBM, on blog I found reports "TBM" as "Most LDS consider it derogatory", yet I have seen people use it by LDS with apparent (righteous) pride. What I have gathered is that it means "True-blue-Mormon". A few times I have seen the phrase used seems to suggests that a TBM unquestionably follows the Church/Priesthood. Then I have read the signature line of Semlogo, and I wondered what Joseph Smith was referring too, and did he foresee the use of TBM by members.

"We have heard men who hold the Priesthood remark, that they would do any thing they were told to do by those who presided over them, if they knew it was wrong: but such obedience as this is worse than folly to us; it is slavery in the extreme; and the man who would thus willingly degrade himself, should not claim a rank among intelligent beings, until he turns from his folly...When the Elders of Israel will so far indulge in these extreme notions of obedience, as to teach them to the people, it is generally because they have it in their hearts to do wrong themselves, and wish to pave the way to accomplish that wrong; or else because they have done wrong, and wish to use the cloak of their authority to cover it with, lest it should be discovered by their superiors, who would require an atonement at their hands." - Joseph Smith

Is TBM different from Joseph Smith speaks against above? Can someone provide an explanation of TBM?

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Hello dirtius max...

I refer to myself as a TBM (yes, it stands for True Blue Mormon) but I, like many others who consider themselves such, am not a blind follower. I like to think of myself as a "thinker" who is pretty well-read, has heard most anti- arguments, and who also enjoys participating here... and, I have a deep testimony of the restored gospel (the Big Picture).

Some people equate TBM to be overzealous Saints who are more identified as blind followers or Molly Mormon/Peter Priesthood types, hence the derogatory connotation. I, and many others, do not fit that mold, but we are very strong in our testimonies... certainly not lukewarm.

from the beach on finally what appears to be a sunny day... GG

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TBM on boards such as this is usually used soley to describe the poster's activity level in the church. ie-they are 'active', believing members.

Because there are critics of the church which retain their membership and then use that membership to assert their authority on all things mormon, the accronym(sp?) is helpful in determining where a poster is coming from, especially when a non-member asks a question and isn't aware that the answer they have gotten is from someone that is still a member but actually believes the organization to be evil, corrupt, or whatever.

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I do not understand the term TBM, on blog I found reports "TBM" as "Most LDS consider it derogatory", yet I have seen people use it by LDS with apparent (righteous) pride.

I take upon myself the epithet of the enemy with pride yes.

What I have gathered is that it means "True-blue-Mormon".

Sure. But I see it as "True Believing Mormon" and I apply it to those who accept all the core doctrines of the Church and also act in the public arena as if they did. In other words, they can truthfully answer the TR questions and receive one.

A few times I have seen the phrase used seems to suggests that a TBM unquestionably follows the Church/Priesthood. Then I have read the signature line of Semlogo, and I wondered what Joseph Smith was referring too, and did he foresee the use of TBM by members.

"We have heard men who hold the Priesthood remark, that they would do any thing they were told to do by those who presided over them, if they knew it was wrong: but such obedience as this is worse than folly to us; it is slavery in the extreme; and the man who would thus willingly degrade himself, should not claim a rank among intelligent beings, until he turns from his folly...When the Elders of Israel will so far indulge in these extreme notions of obedience, as to teach them to the people, it is generally because they have it in their hearts to do wrong themselves, and wish to pave the way to accomplish that wrong; or else because they have done wrong, and wish to use the cloak of their authority to cover it with, lest it should be discovered by their superiors, who would require an atonement at their hands." - Joseph Smith

I agree, such is folly. But it is not folly to believe, live, and teach what the Church does. So an opponent of Prop 8, for example, cannot possibly be a TBM.

Don't allow this thread to become about Prop 8 please.

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When I first came upon the phrase "TBM' I thought it meant, "Tickets By Mail" and I couldn't figure what all you wonderful people were talking about then I figured out it meant, "Teddy Bear Mormon" and so now I think it means "Transforming Body Mormon" but I guess it means True Believing Mormon

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Is TBM different from Joseph Smith speaks against above? Can someone provide an explanation of TBM?

I've always understood a "TBM" to be someone who has a very, very strong testimony of Joseph Smith, The Book of Mormon, and the current Prophet. :search:

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"We have heard men who hold the Priesthood remark, that they would do any thing they were told to do by those who presided over them, if they knew it was wrong: but such obedience as this is worse than folly to us; it is slavery in the extreme; and the man who would thus willingly degrade himself, should not claim a rank among intelligent beings, until he turns from his folly...When the Elders of Israel will so far indulge in these extreme notions of obedience, as to teach them to the people, it is generally because they have it in their hearts to do wrong themselves, and wish to pave the way to accomplish that wrong; or else because they have done wrong, and wish to use the cloak of their authority to cover it with, lest it should be discovered by their superiors, who would require an atonement at their hands." - Joseph Smith

Is TBM different from Joseph Smith speaks against above? Can someone provide an explanation of TBM?

You can be a True Believer and still humble yourself; question, ponder, pray, and seek out the Lord's council on the things uttered by the Prophets/Authorities; in some ways it may require it.

A zealot is a zealot no matter the religion and a TBM is not a zealot; or he/she would fall under condemnation for "Unrighteous Dominion".

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I think TBM is a phrase people use to describe a non-thinking, naive member. It does not have a literal meaning otherwise I would consider myself a TBM, which I don't. I consider my parents TBM, they are great, wonderful people who follow the prophets greatly. They never "think" about their position on things and that's ok. There are other members who shut off their brains when presented with a logical argument about how something could potentially be incorrect in their overly fundamental premises. For example, a sister in my ward refused to question our bishop on an idea for something to do in a RS meeting because that would be not supporting your leaders. I'm sure he would have welcomed her question/comment. She is a TBM in all the negative aspects of the term, my parents are TBM in the positive sense of the term. I, as a strongly believing Mormon who deeply thinks of everything I do and follow the prophets, I am not a TBM. Just my $0.02

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I see TBM used as a synonym for "Chapel Mormon," while something like NOM (New Order Mormon) is used for "Internet Mormons." The former is often presented as a close-minded zombie, while the latter is presented as some odd "intellectual" New Age or secular Mormonism.

I frankly find the dichotomy silly. They both reflect a fundamentalist attitude, in my view.

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I see TBM used as a synonym for "Chapel Mormon," while something like NOM (New Order Mormon) is used for "Internet Mormons." The former is often presented as a close-minded zombie, while the latter is presented as some odd "intellectual" New Age or secular Mormonism.

I frankly find the dichotomy silly. They both reflect a fundamentalist attitude, in my view.

While Chapel Mormons would almost have to be TBMs by definition, most Internet Mormons are TBMs as well.

NOMs tend to reject the principles that would qualify them for even marginal Internet Mormon status.

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The quote, by the way, is not from Joseph Smith; it's from an unsigned article published in the 13 Nov 1852 edition of the Millennial Star. Not that I don't like it. I do. Heaps. But I'm a historian, and I like to maintain at least a semblance of accuracy.

Concerning the acronym, it means many things to many different people, I suspect, but I personally hate it because overwhelmingly I see it used in one of two ways: 1) Many critics use it as a derogatory term suggesting a certain mindlessness on the part of people who are 'brainwshed' enough to believe. 2) Many apostates use it in reference to themselves in their pre-apostasy days to lend credence to their former 'insider' status. For example: 'I was as TBM as they come [so you should believe me], and then I discovered the truth.' Though I'm certain there are exceptions, I have read enough exit stories to reach the personal conclusion that the more one played around with the law of chastity as a youth, found Church services to be mind-numbingly boring, or frittered away one's mission experience, for example, the more adamantly that same person will claim to have been a TBM before his/her eventual apostasy.

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I see TBM used as a synonym for "Chapel Mormon," while something like NOM (New Order Mormon) is used for "Internet Mormons." The former is often presented as a close-minded zombie, while the latter is presented as some odd "intellectual" New Age or secular Mormonism.

I frankly find the dichotomy silly. They both reflect a fundamentalist attitude, in my view.

I don't see TBM's as being chapel mormons. I think that most internet mormons are true believing members. The internet mormons are more liberal in their understanding of things while the chapel mormons are more orthodox.

I don't see anything silly about the dichotomy. Actually I like to think of it more as a spectrum. Its a spectrum I assume would be found in all belief systems.

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TBM has too much of sneering condescension and is, as such, a gross insult intended as such.

My view is you don't let your ideological enemy define you, your positions or, especially, your holy writ.

If you use TBM to attempt to define me or those with whom I am allied, you make yourself my enemy.

USU "Define your terms and there are rarely errors in understanding" 78

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My view is you don't let your ideological enemy define you, your positions or, especially, your holy writ.

If you use TBM to attempt to define me or those with whom I am allied, you make yourself my enemy.

In the animal kingdom, the rule is, eat or be eaten; in the human kingdom, define or be defined.

Metaphorically, the result is the same.

Lehi

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I always assumed that TBM = True Blue Mormon, stemming from the Joseph F. Smith story:

Fifteen-year-old Joseph F. Smith was called on a mission to the Sandwich Islands, now Hawaii. After he arrived he became ill, but he used this time to learn the language so he could talk to the natives. He learned the language in one hundred days. He also learned to love the people and even their food. Some of the other missionaries gave up and went home. Some felt that only the Americans and Europeans, not the natives, should be converted, but Joseph knew that the Lord, through President Brigham Young, had sent him to bring the light of the gospel to these loving, generous people—the natives of the Islands.

Three years later, and still younger than today’s young men who are called to go on missions, he was released to return home. On the return trip, just as on the way to the Islands, it was necessary for the elders to stop and find jobs in the harvest fields or elsewhere to pay for clothes and food and to help them return to Salt Lake City. When they got as far as San Bernardino, Joseph was hired as a teamster to drive a team across the desert to Salt Lake.

At this time there were strong anti-Mormon feelings. Brigham Young and the Mormon people were blamed for the terrible Mountain Meadow Massacre where some non-Mormon immigrants traveling through Utah to California were killed in 1857. Also, the U.S. Army was on its way to Utah because of false charges made by government officials from Utah who were antagonistic toward the Latter-day Saints. “There were many men scattered abroad who had murder in their hearts” who boasted that they would kill any Mormons they found. Because of this, Church members traveled in little companies for safety.

Joseph F. and his company had stopped to camp one afternoon when a band “of drunken men rode into the camp … , cursing and swearing and threatening to kill any ‘Mormons’ that came within their path. … Some of the brethren when they heard them coming had cautiously gone into the brush down the creek, out of sight. Joseph F. was … gathering wood for the fire. [He walked up to the campfire to deposit his wood. One drunken ruffian with a pistol in his hand said] that it was his duty to [kill] every ‘Mormon’ he should meet. … In a loud, angry voice [he demanded from Joseph], ‘Are you a … Mormon?’ [Joseph ignored the gun aimed at him,] and looking the ruffian in the eye … boldly answered, ‘Yes siree; dyed in the wool, true blue, through and through.’

“This [surprised] the man; and … he grasped [Elder Smith’s] hand and said,

“ ‘Well, you are the … pleasantest man I ever met! Shake, young fellow, I am glad to see a man that stands up for his convictions’ ” (Smith, Life of Joseph F. Smith, p. 189

The Presidents of the Church

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The quote, by the way, is not from Joseph Smith; it's from an unsigned article published in the 13 Nov 1852 edition of the Millennial Star. Not that I don't like it. I do. Heaps. But I'm a historian, and I like to maintain at least a semblance of accuracy.

That's good to know. Thanks for telling us.

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TBM has too much of sneering condescension and is, as such, a gross insult intended as such.

My view is you don't let your ideological enemy define you, your positions or, especially, your holy writ.

If you use TBM to attempt to define me or those with whom I am allied, you make yourself my enemy.

USU "Define your terms and there are rarely errors in understanding" 78

How would one define your beliefs without offending you?

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I never knew the term TBM (True Blue Mormon) was so offensive to LDS. I thought they prided themselves on being, "Mormon, true blue, through and through." I will try to avoid using the term in the future.

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I never knew the term TBM (True Blue Mormon) was so offensive to LDS. I thought they prided themselves on being, "Mormon, true blue, through and through." I will try to avoid using the term in the future.

I think it's one of those things, we can use it, but they can't.

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The quote, by the way, is not from Joseph Smith; it's from an unsigned article published in the 13 Nov 1852 edition of the Millennial Star. Not that I don't like it. I do. Heaps. But I'm a historian, and I like to maintain at least a semblance of accuracy.

The MS was "Edited and Published" in London at this time by "S[amuel]. W. Richards," mission president of the British mission and nephew to Apostle Willard Richards.

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I think [True Blue Mormon is] one of those things, we can use it, but they can't.

It's a lot less who uses it than it is how the person uses it. At least in my mind.

I know a few Saints (at least in name) who can make "TBM" a swear word, and some outside the Church who use it respectfully. Of course, it's usually the other way 'round, but that's the point.

Lehi

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I take upon myself the epithet of the enemy with pride yes.

Sure. But I see it as "True Believing Mormon" and I apply it to those who accept all the core doctrines of the Church and also act in the public arena as if they did. In other words, they can truthfully answer the TR questions and receive one.

I agree, such is folly. But it is not folly to believe, live, and teach what the Church does. So an opponent of Prop 8, for example, cannot possibly be a TBM.

I think that you are quite wrong about that. My closest friend is an opponent of Prop. 8 for the same reasons that he is opposed to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Reynolds v. U.S., yet he is certainly a man who could fill a place in the Quorum of the Twelve today, if necessary. I personally know very few men of such caliber.

By the way, I had not heard the terms TBM or Molly Mormon until coming to Utah. I think it inappropriate to use such terms in a dismissive or contemptuous manner. Some very sincere people try to follow the Gospel as best they can, and we needn't find fault so quickly. We need to be tolerant and kind to one another.

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By the way, I had not heard the terms TBM or Molly Mormon until coming to Utah. I think it inappropriate to use such terms in a dismissive or contemptuous manner. Some very sincere people try to follow the Gospel as best they can, and we needn't find fault so quickly. We need to be tolerant and kind to one another.

As one who has in the past used labels like "Molly Mormon" in derogatory ways, I totally agree with this. I find the criticism coming most often from those still in a teenage mindset of "I'm cool because I rebel!"

This isn't to say there aren't members who are uptight, naive, or slightly fundamentalist. But there is nothing wrong with, say, avoiding R-movies or taking out the second pair earrings (I don't do the former and don't even have one of the latter).

My favorite outcry, though, is "judge not lest ye be judged!" There are plenty of self-righteous, judgmental Mormons (this usually occurs due to gospel hobby horses). However, I find those who throw out this version of the verse don't know where it is located or what the context is. What is basically boils down to is that they don't want to be told what they are doing is possibly inappropriate or downright immoral.

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