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Uncorrelated Mormon


Duncan

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Actually, I just read that he has not left the church...yet.

He does use the term Uncorrelated Mormon. I think it's just another term for someone who is questioning the church (but hasn't actually left, yet)...or has left, but still identifies as LDS (culturally or otherwise).

I am probably in that group, somewhat. I don't think I have completely left the church (in my head).

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Actually, I just read that he has not left the church...yet.

He does use the term Uncorrelated Mormon. I think it's just another term for someone who is questioning the church (but hasn't actually left, yet)...or has left, but still identifies as LDS (culturally or otherwise).

I am probably in that group, somewhat. I don't think I have completely left the church (in my head).

From thesometimesaint's link I read in here that he has left and is a "big celebration" on that link from the comment section. Talk about "out of the Lord's Church" testimony builders.

Regardless, you don't have to answer, but what would keep you in the Church? What do you feel you need? How can we as members help if that is a desire?

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Since one of my posts was linked here (thanks, btw), I thought I would comment.

When I wrote the post, I thought that an "uncorrelated Mormon" would be functionally equivalent to a "new order Mormon" or a "cafeteria Mormon." I thought all of these varying terms were simply different metaphors to describe the same phenomenon. Different approaches by different people (where "uncorrelated" Mormon is obviously John Dehlin's...and perhaps an evolution of the "stay LDS" concept he developed earlier.)

Anyway, one thing I would say is that, despite the PostMormon topic (and the hasty topic I made elsewhere linking to the PostMormon topic), the news of John's exit is greatly exaggerated. I mean, depending on how you define "exit," it either is 1) not new or 2) not true. The most dramatic thing to have happened is that John's SP wanted to talk to him, and now he will be looking over Mormon Stories to see if John has crossed any lines that will warrant further disciplinary action. The PostMormon topic (and others) then are quite interesting...because they reflect people's reaction to misinformation, rumor, and misinterpretation. But whatever.

ANYWAY, back to what an uncorrelated Mormon is.

In my post, I had supposed that whatever an uncorrelated Mormon is, it would turn out to be someone that is essentially "out" of the church by specific measures, despite their attempt to recontextualize the church in their lives.

But over that post (and on several other posts, on my blog, and in other message boards), I've found that uncorrelated Mormonism means quite a bit more. There are quite a few perspectives I found, and I guess even these aren't exhaustive:

  • Of course, there's a number of people who do not believe in the fundamental truth claims of Mormonism, and they "stay" because of things like family, etc., Without such external pressures and risks of losing who they love, they would probably be out. Regardless, while they are technically "in", they may not willingly pay tithing or things like that, or only do so to keep up appearances.
  • There are people who believe in most of the Mormon truth claims, but have ruffles around key issues. As John listed in a powerpoint, they may have racial, feminist, gay, or intellectual sympathies or feelings. In this case, what jeopardizes them is not a lack of belief in core beliefs about the Restoration, but rather current issues and the church's involvement in these current issues. (E.g., the way the church would like for its position against gay marriage to be a "fundamental truth claim" of Mormonism alienates these people.)
  • The most surprising group for me to talk to were those people who believe Mormon truth claims, and generally the values that the church is trying to espouse, but disagree with the corporatist mentality that the church has taken. In this sense, this group is literally uncorrelated, because they feel that correlation has either stamped out some Mormon truth or that correlation is apostasy. One person I talked to went so far to say that correlation was socialism creeping into the church stamping out member agency.
  • (Other people have come from a similar anti-correlation standpoint, but without the conservative/traditional backdrop. In this sense, their uncorrelated vision may be more "radical" looking...such as tribe-based, or clinging to the more community-based approach of the early restoration days.)

I can't speak for any of these groups, much less all of them, but it seems to me that what's interesting, in addressing bookofmormontruth, is that there isn't one thing that "would keep [them] in the church." There isn't one thing that they feel they need. There isn't just one way that members could help.

Nevertheless, I can't help but feel that most people here, and especially people who might be called "TBM" or orthodox at other venues (I mean this term in a positive, descriptive way), would not be willing to do the kinds of things that might keep these people in the church, because it would probably change the church to be unacceptable from a TBM perspective.

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Subversive Asset 2.0:

I can't speak for others, but I am a member because I actually believe what the Church teaches. I'm not your conventional Mormon, but I am about as LDS as one can get.

I'm not quite sure how to respond to this because I'm not quite sure what the emphasis in this post is.

I have a couple ideas:

1) I am a member because I was raised in the Church and I have never resigned/been excommunicated, so I am still on the rolls. (Consider: for a great many members, whether converts or raised in the church, belief in the church's truth claims is not the essential determinant of membership.)

2) I am not your conventional Mormon, because I do not believe in the claims of the church. But I am still a Mormon insomuch that being a Mormon is akin to an ethnicity or culture, of which I am a part despite my nonbelief. (Consider again, being a Mormon is not equivalent to being a member, nor equivalent to being a believer for many people.)

So, this is the angle that I approach the uncorrelated Mormon phenomenon from...even though I recognize now that this doesn't really cover many of the perspectives.

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Subversive Asset 2.0:

Long time convert for the last 40 years. I fully believe the Truth Claims of the Church, but am very particular about what I consider its Truth Claims. It isn't necessarily what some random member, be they high or low in the Church, believes.

To me, to devote as much time, effort, and expense to the Church, as we do and not believe it, is a waste. They need to find something they do believe in, they'll be happier for it.

I'm the only member of the Church in my birth family.

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Subversive Asset 2.0:

Long time convert for the last 40 years. I fully believe the Truth Claims of the Church, but am very particular about what I consider its Truth Claims. It isn't necessarily what some random member, be they high or low in the Church, believes.

To me, to devote as much time, effort, and expense to the Church, as we do and not believe it, is a waste. They need to find something they do believe in, they'll be happier for it.

I'm the only member of the Church in my birth family.

Well, what about someone who believes the following:

"I believe that even if the church is not what it claims to be, it's as good a place as any to raise my children in a community with values I can relate to."

or

"I believe that keeping my family/marriage together is more important than my own personal happiness, so I will stick in the church."

or

"I believe that this church can change and improve, but that I can't help it if I am outside of it."

These are just a few things someone who is "uncorrelated" might believe, that makes devoting time, effort, and expense to the church not a waste.

I'm not saying I agree with these. But it's the difference between uncorrelated and disaffected, really. Totally different after all...

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Well, what about someone who believes the following:

They should be excommunicated as swiftly as possible in my opinion since it is apparent they will not leave on their own. Such are not going up or down in terms of progession so they need to get moving. A lot of them might sink immediately but I think of those, some will begin to rise as they experience the error of their ways.

Revelation 3:16

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They should be excommunicated as swiftly as possible in my opinion since it is apparent they will not leave on their own. Such are not going up or down in terms of progession so they need to get moving. A lot of them might sink immediately but I think of those, some will begin to rise as they experience the error of their ways.

Revelation 3:16

I think that is why many people in this situation mask their thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. Were it not for internet forums where people may speak anonymously, you would never even be able to tell...which is the point.

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[*]The most surprising group for me to talk to were those people who believe Mormon truth claims, and generally the values that the church is trying to espouse, but disagree with the corporatist mentality that the church has taken. In this sense, this group is literally uncorrelated, because they feel that correlation has either stamped out some Mormon truth or that correlation is apostasy.

This sounds a lot like how I feel.

It also sounds a lot like how Joseph Smith felt.

It feels so good not to be trammeled.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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I think that is why many people in this situation mask their thoughts, feelings, and beliefs.

It's actually a good thing that they have to mask it. It reduces their influence on the weak.

Were it not for internet forums where people may speak anonymously, you would never even be able to tell...which is the point.

They're often easily identified. Few have the fortitude to serve in the Church or carry out assignments or come on a regular basis.

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Why isn't it is a surprise that you would compare yourself to Joseph Smith. rolleyes.gif

I do not consider myself fit to black Joseph Smith's boots.

I am only saying that Joseph Smith was an "uncorrelated Christian," and would likely be aghast that the church he founded to break away from the creeds of Christendom has been converted into the correlated Christianity he abominated.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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They're often easily identified. Few have the fortitude to serve in the Church or carry out assignments or come on a regular basis.

This is not universally true.

One doesn't have to be a demagogue in order to value service or attend worship service.

I find my home teaching has actually improved as I have come to focus more on the service aspects of the Church rather than its claims to doctrinal supremacy and inerrancy.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

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It's actually a good thing that they have to mask it. It reduces their influence on the weak.

What are you more concerned about? Their personal salvation (e.g., excommunicate them so they see the error of their ways) or their effects on others' (reduce their influence on the weak)?

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Since one of my posts was linked here (thanks, btw), I thought I would comment.

When I wrote the post, I thought that an "uncorrelated Mormon" would be functionally equivalent to a "new order Mormon" or a "cafeteria Mormon." I thought all of these varying terms were simply different metaphors to describe the same phenomenon. Different approaches by different people (where "uncorrelated" Mormon is obviously John Dehlin's...and perhaps an evolution of the "stay LDS" concept he developed earlier.)

Anyway, one thing I would say is that, despite the PostMormon topic (and the hasty topic I made elsewhere linking to the PostMormon topic), the news of John's exit is greatly exaggerated. I mean, depending on how you define "exit," it either is 1) not new or 2) not true. The most dramatic thing to have happened is that John's SP wanted to talk to him, and now he will be looking over Mormon Stories to see if John has crossed any lines that will warrant further disciplinary action. The PostMormon topic (and others) then are quite interesting...because they reflect people's reaction to misinformation, rumor, and misinterpretation. But whatever.

ANYWAY, back to what an uncorrelated Mormon is.

In my post, I had supposed that whatever an uncorrelated Mormon is, it would turn out to be someone that is essentially "out" of the church by specific measures, despite their attempt to recontextualize the church in their lives.

But over that post (and on several other posts, on my blog, and in other message boards), I've found that uncorrelated Mormonism means quite a bit more. There are quite a few perspectives I found, and I guess even these aren't exhaustive:

  • Of course, there's a number of people who do not believe in the fundamental truth claims of Mormonism, and they "stay" because of things like family, etc., Without such external pressures and risks of losing who they love, they would probably be out. Regardless, while they are technically "in", they may not willingly pay tithing or things like that, or only do so to keep up appearances.
  • There are people who believe in most of the Mormon truth claims, but have ruffles around key issues. As John listed in a powerpoint, they may have racial, feminist, gay, or intellectual sympathies or feelings. In this case, what jeopardizes them is not a lack of belief in core beliefs about the Restoration, but rather current issues and the church's involvement in these current issues. (E.g., the way the church would like for its position against gay marriage to be a "fundamental truth claim" of Mormonism alienates these people.)
  • The most surprising group for me to talk to were those people who believe Mormon truth claims, and generally the values that the church is trying to espouse, but disagree with the corporatist mentality that the church has taken. In this sense, this group is literally uncorrelated, because they feel that correlation has either stamped out some Mormon truth or that correlation is apostasy. One person I talked to went so far to say that correlation was socialism creeping into the church stamping out member agency.
  • (Other people have come from a similar anti-correlation standpoint, but without the conservative/traditional backdrop. In this sense, their uncorrelated vision may be more "radical" looking...such as tribe-based, or clinging to the more community-based approach of the early restoration days.)

I can't speak for any of these groups, much less all of them, but it seems to me that what's interesting, in addressing bookofmormontruth, is that there isn't one thing that "would keep [them] in the church." There isn't one thing that they feel they need. There isn't just one way that members could help.

Nevertheless, I can't help but feel that most people here, and especially people who might be called "TBM" or orthodox at other venues (I mean this term in a positive, descriptive way), would not be willing to do the kinds of things that might keep these people in the church, because it would probably change the church to be unacceptable from a TBM perspective.

This is a classic result of identity crisis to find a category to fit and be in with the "newest" and most catchy phrase.

When in reality, it is only a conflict between the natural man and the Divine soul that intimately knows truth and is re-awakened throughout life by the Holy Ghost who "brings all things back to remembrance". For we all at one time had the same knowledge of truth (possibly on different levels) in the pre-earth life and we will all have that same knowledge in the next life.

Yes, it is difficult to "live" the Gospel, but it is "easy" to believe in it because in reality, we already know and knew it.

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It's actually a good thing that they have to mask it. It reduces their influence on the weak.
What are you more concerned about? Their personal salvation (e.g., excommunicate them so they see the error of their ways) or their effects on others' (reduce their influence on the weak)?

I try to be more concerned about what the Lord would be more concerned about. "It is better that one man should perish than a whole nation should dwindle in unbelief......."

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I do not consider myself fit to black Joseph Smith's boots.

I am only saying that Joseph Smith was an "uncorrelated Christian," and would likely be aghast that the church he founded to break away from the creeds of Christendom has been converted into the correlated Christianity he abominated.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

It never was Joseph Smith's Church.

The Lord who communes with our modern day Prophets would adamantly disagree with your "steadying the ark" analysis.

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This is a classic result of identity crisis to find a category to fit and be in with the "newest" and most catchy phrase.

When in reality, it is only a conflict between the natural man and the Divine soul that intimately knows truth and is re-awakened throughout life by the Holy Ghost who "brings all things back to remembrance". For we all at one time had the same knowledge of truth (possibly on different levels) in the pre-earth life and we will all have that same knowledge in the next life.

Yes, it is difficult to "live" the Gospel, but it is "easy" to believe in it because in reality, we already know and knew it.

The problem is that for many of these people, the opposite is the case.

It's astoundingly easy to "live" the Gospel. There are very specific actions to take and to do. (which is one of the criticisms of the church by some uncorrelated Mormons and by non-Mormons.)

It's not so easy to believe in it. It's not so easy to produce a spiritual experience, to produce confirmation, and so on. Because these things -- despite what some will say -- are gifts of grace, and not results of effort.

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Subversive Asset 2.0:

To me if I didn't believe in some organization I certainly wouldn't be inclined to join much less maintain affiliation with that organization. This life is just too short for that.

One can certainly be and teach their children to be moral responsible citizens without being members of the Church.

One can certainly be a non member and love their spouse and children every bit as much as a member.

The Church is changing constantly. What was applicable in JS day just doesn't meet the needs of a 14 million member organization. What hasn't and won't change is the Truth Claims of the Church.

If one is using the term uncorrelated to mean disaffected sure. But I not too sure that is a correct supposition.

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The problem is that for many of these people, the opposite is the case.

It's astoundingly easy to "live" the Gospel. There are very specific actions to take and to do. (which is one of the criticisms of the church by some uncorrelated Mormons and by non-Mormons.)

It's not so easy to believe in it. It's not so easy to produce a spiritual experience, to produce confirmation, and so on. Because these things -- despite what some will say -- are gifts of grace, and not results of effort.

Wrong on all accounts, sorry.

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