Jump to content

Your ward / stake level of activity for youth?


Recommended Posts

47 minutes ago, Teancum said:

Just trying to roll with ya man!  But I did get COVID last week for the first time so it may be brain fog.😁

I'm sorry to hear that.  I hope you recover quickly, and well. :) 

Link to comment
25 minutes ago, bluebell said:

Exactly!  Which is why the definition is pretty useless.  

Hardly.  Did you look at the link.  Jesus met the very definition of a cult leader. Most new religious leaders do.  There is more to it than the paragraph I posted.  But you didn't spend any time with it did you.

Link to comment
17 minutes ago, Teancum said:

I would not disagree.

 

 

So use cult if you prefer.  I don't think the Church is a cult. My wife thinks it is but she is a pretty black and white thinker. I know other disaffected members who feel the same.  I don't.  I think there are attributes that cults use that are part of the LDS Church experience.  I think it is on the right slope of the bell curve when you graph those attributes.  I think time demands are one of them.  OThers can disagree.

I don't. I don't think we fully match either, though there are practice and communities within the religion that can be more cultic. I had a client once who described several of their small community's practices and behaviors in the faith and I told them that it was cultic. It was also pretty foreign to me...I had no equivalent community I could compare it to within the church. The ones I could best "get" seemed an extremely rigid interpretation to random advice and counsel. Others were so rigid and separatist to the point of being contradictory to other forms of church guidance (like many being concerned if a kid went to a nearby college). Others were just insane or cruel to me. But there's a reason these were foreign to me...they didn't represent the entirely of the church. Some of it went overtly against what I'd been taught or believed as a member. I can't call the church either cult or HDG in aggregate because that is still a representation of other forms of cognitive distortion to me (overgeneralizing, mental filtering, labeling, jumping to conclusions, etc). That there are some attributes of cults or HDG's in it doesn't make it one.

17 minutes ago, Teancum said:

Have you looked at this book per chance:  http+s://recoveringagency.com/

When googling I was looking for sources not focused on a singular group, but generalized principles or attributes. These are the three I landed on

https://secularliturgies.wordpress.com/2020/02/24/the-25-signs-youre-in-a-high-control-group-or-cult-by-anastasia-somerville-wong/

https://www.colleenrussellmft.com/high-demand-group-or-cult-education-a-recovery

http://www.dreichel.com/Checklist_of_Cult_Characte.htm

 

With luv,

BD

Link to comment
2 hours ago, Teancum said:

Hardly.  Did you look at the link.  Jesus met the very definition of a cult leader. Most new religious leaders do.  There is more to it than the paragraph I posted.  But you didn't spend any time with it did you.

I realize there is more to it than that.  A lot more.  So many different people have written so many different books about it, and they don't all agree with each other (which is why I don't see a reason to treat the link you shared as an expert on the topic).

But my point was that, if all religious leaders fit the definition of a "cult leader" then what does "cult leader" mean except leader of a religion?  And if that's what it really means, then why use the term?  

Link to comment
1 hour ago, bluebell said:

I realize there is more to it than that.  A lot more.  So many different people have written so many different books about it, and they don't all agree with each other (which is why I don't see a reason to treat the link you shared as an expert on the topic).

I did not say that they were the  only expert, nor the bet expert, etc.  But the book is well researched and my guess is you really did not look at it much. I don't think you are interested in really exploring the topic much.  And it seems nonsensical to argue people have written lots of books about IT.  I assume you mean cult/mind control?  That diminishes the values of the topic how?  So many have written about religion, Jesus, Mormonism, evolution, self improvement and likely other topics that you may find worthwhile. Do you dismiss other books because so many have written books about IT and they don't agree with each other?

1 hour ago, bluebell said:

But my point was that, if all religious leaders fit the definition of a "cult leader" then what does "cult leader" mean except leader of a religion?  And if that's what it really means, then why use the term?  

All religious leaders do not mean the definition.  Nor do all religions tilt heavy on the mind control techniques.  Your premise is faulty.  If you don't want to do a healthy examination of your own religion and its methods that's fine with me.  But that does not mean it does not have some, a lot, who knows. As I said to another poster I don't think the church is a cult but I do think it moves down the right side of the bell curve when one plots the attributes of high demand groups. Some people like that, and thrive on it. Some may need it.  Others may disagree with me. I am not an expert on this.  But I have read some on it by different sources. Thus my personal conclusion.

Link to comment
8 hours ago, Teancum said:

Thanks for the down vote about the church filling up your time to control you.  I know the truth hurts.  But this is what high demand organizations do. It is not just the church.  But the church does dominate an active members time.  I am sure you have associate with non LDS who when they see the amount of time the church takes they are a bit surprised.  Anyway sorry if that made you mad.

Looks like I ticked the Aussie off as well.😏

Link to comment
18 hours ago, Hamba Tuhan said:

Quorums still have advisers to assist. Literally the sole change was to stop calling quorum advisers a 'presidency'. That's it.

You are right.  That is the only change according to the handbook.  In practical terms however the impact is much greater.

Three of the busiest people in the ward now have additional responsibilities (In charge of all planning and executing of activities, attending all activities, attending all quorum meetings, teaching lessons, … They do not have time for their list of responsibilities.  They are overburdened.

The predictable outcome is that things and more importantly kids are falling through the cracks.  I’ve talked to too many people from around the country to know that this is working poorly.

Link to comment
5 hours ago, bluebell said:

Almost exclusively, leaders who seek control get power out of controlling participants, and with that power they get access to things that they want (like money, or fame, or sex, or people willing to carry out illicit/illegal activities that they benefit from, etc.)

But the church and its leaders don't get any of that from this alleged control.  So again, why would they seek to have such control?

I feel for the leaders. I think they're up against youth that may not need the in person social activity. Everyone has it on their phones. It's a different time and age. If I were active and had a calling in YW's I'm afraid how I might react. I remember what I went through when I worked with them before social media and thinking they'd love to go to a play for the activity, and it seared in memory how one young woman said she couldn't and had too much homework. I guess I wasn't much of a student because I'd have chosen activity over homework when her age. And even the younger people say time goes fast, I thought just the older people felt that way. 

 

 

Link to comment
3 hours ago, Durangout said:

Three of the busiest people in the ward now have additional responsibilities (In charge of all planning and executing of activities, attending all activities, attending all quorum meetings, teaching lessons, …

I was first called as a counsellor in the bishopric in 2012. As second counsellor, I oversaw the deacons quorum. I attended all quorum (and quorum presidency!) meetings. I attended all activities. I picked boys up for church and activities and dropped them home again. When the quorum adviser (a policeman) had to work on Sundays, I taught lessons too, as directed by the quorum president. What I didn't do -- because it's wrong! -- was to plan or execute activities. That's the role of the quorum presidency, and they did it well because we'd trained them right.

There are literally no 'additional responsibilities' for those who were following the Handbook ten years ago.

Edited by Hamba Tuhan
Link to comment
8 hours ago, Teancum said:

I did not say that they were the  only expert, nor the bet expert, etc.  But the book is well researched and my guess is you really did not look at it much. I don't think you are interested in really exploring the topic much.  And it seems nonsensical to argue people have written lots of books about IT.  I assume you mean cult/mind control?  That diminishes the values of the topic how?  So many have written about religion, Jesus, Mormonism, evolution, self improvement and likely other topics that you may find worthwhile. Do you dismiss other books because so many have written books about IT and they don't agree with each other?

All religious leaders do not mean the definition.  Nor do all religions tilt heavy on the mind control techniques.  Your premise is faulty.  If you don't want to do a healthy examination of your own religion and its methods that's fine with me.  But that does not mean it does not have some, a lot, who knows. As I said to another poster I don't think the church is a cult but I do think it moves down the right side of the bell curve when one plots the attributes of high demand groups. Some people like that, and thrive on it. Some may need it.  Others may disagree with me. I am not an expert on this.  But I have read some on it by different sources. Thus my personal conclusion.

I can't speak for BB, but I got bored today and looked more closely at the website. The first page is super vague and it's hard to get a good read of what the author is going at if you don't already agree with her conclusions on the faith. So I went and scanned some of her related blog posts/articles about this. I landed on this one specifically and started taking a deeper dive into what she wrote. If this is an example of how she does research and forms her conclusion, I'm not impressed. 

I made it through part 1 "behavioral control." Here are the main problems I see with it.

- Almost all the quotes from modern leaders are from sources at least 30-40 years old. Almost all of them are from the 80's and 90's. The one I was most curious about was from peer pressure, I looked it up and the section isn't the best from my eyes. But of course this was from a time that I would have been either a baby or a you child (depending the copy right), so not from my time and sensitivities. It also was pretty vague up until maybe the end. Her conclusions on the church on this ignore the plethora of sources from the lest decade or so that talk about this same topic. They range from explicit condemnation of ostracism based on religious affiliation and general good advice that I have a hard time picturing most parents disagreeing with if they have any desire to teach their kids boundaries and safety. Things like, how to say no to activities that make one uncomfortable (like drinking parties, or uncomfortable movies/media). These come from sources ranging from church magazines to GC talks. But lets go with one  of the more awkward lessons from a manual no one uses from a time most people under the age of 40 can barely remember. 

- To make her points she needs to over-generalized and/or exaggerate the degree of reprimand someone would get from the church. So for example several things are described as "prohibited" that are at best uncommon or discouraged. This includes things like dating pre-16 or dating/marrying non-members or less-active members. Other "strongly discouraged" items also vary a ton in actual discouragement. 

- Her points are frozen in time...that time beings somewhere between the 80's-00's. There were several things that were antiquated or have obviously shifted. Temple garment use for example. There was never clear instructions on how to wear your g's with undies or other random specifics. This was usually dependent on who gave instructions. I watched this in real times as both one who got endowed with two temple workers emphasizes or shrugging of extra advice the other was giving. One was older, one was younger. And then again as I watched temple policy clarify to insist that one not give excess advice on temple garment use beyond the approved script with a strong emphasis to not give newbies advice on how to wear their bras. In general many policy changes made in recent decades have usually worked to clip the degree of imposed rigidity that can happen in individual wards or stakes. But again, this is ignored...focusing on a time when this was becoming a serious problem.

- Using smaller populations to fit assertions she was trying to make. One included a stat about bankruptcy in UT (the whole utah = a worldwide church where the majority of members don't live there nor hold their cultural quarks). But on one of her weakest points, she noted a rando survey of 17 EQ men on their sleep patterns. This has so many problems: the small completely non-representative sample size and the comparison to both non-active members or non-member of a similar demographic being the biggest. By no means is this solid, but then she uses this to help bolster a claim tied with cults: disrupted sleep patterns EVEN THOUGH she acknoweldge that actual church doctrine strongly encourages good sleep and several policy changes and emphases have focused on reducing the amount of time any one person is working on a calling. THis leads to...

- Though she acknowledges contradiction in practices, she doesn't really address what this means to her arguments when pidgeon holing us into cultic traits. This shows a ton in the WoW section. It's all over the place. At one point we're super rigid and cautious about the WoW. On the next we're ignoring other caveats in scripture. On the next we're fat because we don't follow the WoW...but also showing we're not receiving the blessings on the WoW?? On the next we're discouraged from caffeine, but then we sometimes do or sometimes don't follow it depending on our level of being a kosher rebel. So basically, like every religion, we have principles/beliefs that have variances of belief and obedience to with minimal consequence if we do or don't minus some old fart getting the vapors when they see a coke. Not really nailing it.

-  Exaggeration to make stronger claims. This shows a ton on the "leisure time" part. She stretches us to having to spend 22 hrs a week filling church "duties." 22 hours! I'm a "good mormon" and the most I've ever done was maybe 10? again, minus special 1-2 times a year activities or super rare experiences like missions. Here's the list that makes it... it hits bingo on several of the other problems I mention:

3 hours/week Sunday Church meeting - antiquated...it's 2 now

Average 8 hours/week for callings - for who?? maybe leaders who suck at delegating and maybe the bishop. That's not a lot of callings. Most callings are easy to complete in 2-4 hrs at best.  

2 hrs/week additional meetings - no specification or description just assertion we're supposed to take by her word

2 hrs Monday for Family Home Evening -  No where is it insisted how we do FHE, let alone how long. The practice is highly variable based on ages, desire, family status, etc. 

1 hr/day scripture reading & prayer - Again, highly variable and exaggerated. Most I seriously doubt are studying an hour a day. Especially if they have younger kids. I like deep dives and chatting with God (aka prayer). So mine may be longer some weeks...Barely there another cuz I still have a 3 year old and other interests. The only time I ever consistently studied 1-2+ hrs a day was a mission. That's not exactly the norm. 

 

But all of this and more is to get to the conclusion that we don't have time to play. Even though most members* play at least somewhat and openly.  Personally, I paint play video games (mostly with my husband, along with home projects), watch TV, read books, hike when I can (3 yr old), hang with friends, and garden....though she puts that last one as an encouraged activity so I probably was brainwashed into liking that last activity to a nigh obsessive level. True I have reduced my fave hobby of travel.  But that one's covid more than church related. Note: I do at least one of these activities daily. Even with my calling.

*I say most because I'm a therapist. Therapists tend to get people who are out of balance. Including overachievers. Over achievers tend to burn out or struggle to take breaks. They also can be found in just about everywhere where high-achievers are common.

- I could go on, but it's getting late. I would add I found the "need to ask permission for major decisions" pretty bad too. it ends with "Parents can (but don’t always) exert a lot of control in both major and minor life decisions." You know, like every parent I've ever met on earth, member or not. This section just doesn't fit what it looks like for cults (let alone HDG's) to have a dependency on the org for major life decisions. 

 

One doesn't have to be uninterested in having a "healthy examination of one's religion" to find serious reasons to be completely uninterested in this book. This author has an unchecked bias (other things that I scanned)...a bias that's fairly antithetical to an LDS worldview. And it shows a ton. Is there fair critique to our faith found both in and out of the church? yeah, i've read many. But I don't think this is showing solid signs of being it. 

Side note I find it curious how much LDS have been recently labeled HDG's online. It's so disproportionate that when I first looked up HDG's "mormon" often came up with it. I thought it was just that I look at a lot of LDS material...so Google. But then I looked up a group that is also "right of the bell curve" and could fit a number of traits that are HDG's: 7th day adventists. Also had a charismatic leader, believes in supernatural phenomenon and have some "extreme" views, strict religious behavioral recommendations and expectations, and some I would say are a little more strict that ours. And yet when I did a few searches trying to attach the phrase HDG or HDR to SDA I got nothing. All there was, were a few scattered comments about them being "cults" by a few christian sites. What was the difference? from what I could first tell, the number of post-SDA sites giving this term a run. Wasn't a big a thing as the Post-lds or lds critical sources that are more adamant in finding a quasi-scientific approach to give legitimacy to grievances and concerns without using the cult-word immediately to de-legitimize it (since heaven knows that'll shut down a convo fast with a member and likely aligns too strongly to another group many post-mo's are also not big fans of: conservative x-tians). I don't know if this is fully a thing. It's completely anecdotal and based on my research powers via google and exposure of some post-mo thoughts/experiences. But based on how this woman does "research," how I ran this "research" has about the same degree of legitimacy. 

 

With luv,

BD

Edited by BlueDreams
Link to comment
6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

I can't speak for BB, but I got bored today and looked more closely at the website. The first page is super vague and it's hard to get a good read of what the author is going at if you don't already agree with her conclusions on the faith. So I went and scanned some of her related blog posts/articles about this. I landed on this one specifically and started taking a deeper dive into what she wrote. If this is an example of how she does research and forms her conclusion, I'm not impressed. 

I am not an apologist for the author or her book.  I think the book is better than her web site.  Her book is one of a number I have on the topic.

6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

I made it through part 1 "behavioral control." Here are the main problems I see with it.

- Almost all the quotes from modern leaders are from sources at least 30-40 years old. Almost all of them are from the 80's and 90's. The one I was most curious about was from peer pressure, I looked it up and the section isn't the best from my eyes. But of course this was from a time that I would have been either a baby or a you child (depending the copy right), so not from my time and sensitivities. It also was pretty vague up until maybe the end. Her conclusions on the church on this ignore the plethora of sources from the lest decade or so that talk about this same topic. They range from explicit condemnation of ostracism based on religious affiliation and general good advice that I have a hard time picturing most parents disagreeing with if they have any desire to teach their kids boundaries and safety. Things like, how to say no to activities that make one uncomfortable (like drinking parties, or uncomfortable movies/media). These come from sources ranging from church magazines to GC talks. But lets go with one  of the more awkward lessons from a manual no one uses from a time most people under the age of 40 can barely remember. 

I am sorry but I find the argument that these are all old quotes weak sauce. And the book has more current sources as well. I could pick plenty of comment from current leaders. The recent talk by President Oaks and BYU on the two greatest commandments and the first superseding the second and following the prophets.  A talk by Elder Ballard on "where will you go" annd "stay in the boat." Two earrings and a Bednar talk about a RM dumping his GF because she had two earrings and that indicates she might not follow the prophet in all things.  Heck the whole two earring thing was totally cult like.  One talk was taken way to far. No beards for temple workers and on and on. All of these examples fall into various categories of control type messaging.

 

But again, the Church needs to own what its leaders say no matter when they say it.  You may be to young for 3 to 40 year old comments. But I am not.  I grew up with them as have many members and they had an impact and still do.

6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

- To make her points she needs to over-generalized and/or exaggerate the degree of reprimand someone would get from the church. So for example several things are described as "prohibited" that are at best uncommon or discouraged. This includes things like dating pre-16 or dating/marrying non-members or less-active members. Other "strongly discouraged" items also vary a ton in actual discouragement. 

I don't know what church you grew up in nor what you taught your kids if you have them but this was al part of the messaging I got and gaev to my children who range from 40 to 27.

6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

- Her points are frozen in time...that time beings somewhere between the 80's-00's.

Not really.  I can find all sorts of things currently as noted above.

 

6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

 

 

-  Exaggeration to make stronger claims. This shows a ton on the "leisure time" part. She stretches us to having to spend 22 hrs a week filling church "duties." 22 hours! I'm a "good mormon" and the most I've ever done was maybe 10? again, minus special 1-2 times a year activities or super rare experiences like missions. Here's the list that makes it... it hits bingo on several of the other problems I mention:

 

6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

3 hours/week Sunday Church meeting - antiquated...it's 2 now

Average 8 hours/week for callings - for who?? maybe leaders who suck at delegating and maybe the bishop. That's not a lot of callings. Most callings are easy to complete in 2-4 hrs at best.  

2 hrs/week additional meetings - no specification or description just assertion we're supposed to take by her word

2 hrs Monday for Family Home Evening -  No where is it insisted how we do FHE, let alone how long. The practice is highly variable based on ages, desire, family status, etc. 

1 hr/day scripture reading & prayer - Again, highly variable and exaggerated. Most I seriously doubt are studying an hour a day. Especially if they have younger kids. I like deep dives and chatting with God (aka prayer). So mine may be longer some weeks...Barely there another cuz I still have a 3 year old and other interests. The only time I ever consistently studied 1-2+ hrs a day was a mission. That's not exactly the norm. 

 

But all of this and more is to get to the conclusion that we don't have time to play. Even though most members* play at least somewhat and openly.  Personally, I paint play video games (mostly with my husband, along with home projects), watch TV, read books, hike when I can (3 yr old), hang with friends, and garden....though she puts that last one as an encouraged activity so I probably was brainwashed into liking that last activity to a nigh obsessive level. True I have reduced my fave hobby of travel.  But that one's covid more than church related. Note: I do at least one of these activities daily. Even with my calling.

2 hour church-came after the book was written.

 

Callings-I have had many calling that take 8 plus hours. BR Counselor, bishop, YM president, Ward Mission Leader, EQ president Stake HC-heck that could take an entire Sunday when I had to trave l to speak and a unit a long way from my home.  Plus it is not just callings.  It is activites youth activities, getting teens to seminary, temple attendance, family history, journaling, etc

 

FHE-yes that is a variable.

 

Scripture/Prayer-variable.  I know I spent hours a week on these things.

6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

 

 

One doesn't have to be uninterested in having a "healthy examination of one's religion" to find serious reasons to be completely uninterested in this book. This author has an unchecked bias (other things that I scanned)...a bias that's fairly antithetical to an LDS worldview. And it shows a ton. Is there fair critique to our faith found both in and out of the church? yeah, i've read many. But I don't think this is showing solid signs of being it. 

As noted this is just one of many books on high demand cult like techniques.  Don't like this book?  Fine. As mentioned I am not an apologist for the book.

6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

Side note I find it curious how much LDS have been recently labeled HDG's online. It's so disproportionate that when I first looked up HDG's "mormon" often came up with it. I thought it was just that I look at a lot of LDS material...so Google. But then I looked up a group that is also "right of the bell curve" and could fit a number of traits that are HDG's: 7th day adventists. Also had a charismatic leader, believes in supernatural phenomenon and have some "extreme" views, strict religious behavioral recommendations and expectations, and some I would say are a little more strict that ours. And yet when I did a few searches trying to attach the phrase HDG or HDR to SDA I got nothing. All there was, were a few scattered comments about them being "cults" by a few christian sites. What was the difference? from what I could first tell, the number of post-SDA sites giving this term a run. Wasn't a big a thing as the Post-lds or lds critical sources that are more adamant in finding a quasi-scientific approach to give legitimacy to grievances and concerns without using the cult-word immediately to de-legitimize it (since heaven knows that'll shut down a convo fast with a member and likely aligns too strongly to another group many post-mo's are also not big fans of: conservative x-tians). I don't know if this is fully a thing. It's completely anecdotal and based on my research powers via google and exposure of some post-mo thoughts/experiences. But based on how this woman does "research," how I ran this "research" has about the same degree of legitimacy. 

 

With luv,

BD

I don't know much about 7th Day Adventists but based on what little I do know I would not be surprised to find them lumped into a high demand group. I think many evangelical groups fall into the mix.  I think mamy multi level marketing groups fall into the category.  As for recent labeling of the church as what a HDG?  I do not know timing or anything.  Most use the work cult.  As noted I do not. But I think outside the church calling the church a cult is not new.  ut that term was more used by other Christian critics and they use it in a different way meaning a pseudo Christian sect that is not orthodox though most when they hear the term don't interpret it that way.  Anecdotally I think you may be surprised how many outside the church have long viewed it a cult like.  Heck my mother in law thought her daughter was joining up with a group like the moonies when my wife joined. I have heard similar comments from others all my adult life.

Link to comment
17 hours ago, Teancum said:

I did not say that they were the  only expert, nor the bet expert, etc.  But the book is well researched and my guess is you really did not look at it much. I don't think you are interested in really exploring the topic much.  And it seems nonsensical to argue people have written lots of books about IT.  I assume you mean cult/mind control?  That diminishes the values of the topic how?  So many have written about religion, Jesus, Mormonism, evolution, self improvement and likely other topics that you may find worthwhile. Do you dismiss other books because so many have written books about IT and they don't agree with each other?

It does not diminish the value, but where there is little consensus, it does diminish the value of a single author's views (that others disagree with).  And you are right, I have not read that book.  I have not read most books, by a vast majority.  There are simply too many of them.

I've studied the topic some, but that book did not come up so it was not a part of that study.

Quote

All religious leaders do not mean the definition.  Nor do all religions tilt heavy on the mind control techniques.  Your premise is faulty.  If you don't want to do a healthy examination of your own religion and its methods that's fine with me.  But that does not mean it does not have some, a lot, who knows. As I said to another poster I don't think the church is a cult but I do think it moves down the right side of the bell curve when one plots the attributes of high demand groups. Some people like that, and thrive on it. Some may need it.  Others may disagree with me. I am not an expert on this.  But I have read some on it by different sources. Thus my personal conclusion.

I have absolutely no issues with you thinking whatever you like.  My only issue is when you elevate your thoughts to facts, which you often do.  As I said before, there's where you'll get pushback from me (and many others).

 

Link to comment
16 hours ago, Tacenda said:

I feel for the leaders. I think they're up against youth that may not need the in person social activity. Everyone has it on their phones. It's a different time and age. If I were active and had a calling in YW's I'm afraid how I might react. I remember what I went through when I worked with them before social media and thinking they'd love to go to a play for the activity, and it seared in memory how one young woman said she couldn't and had too much homework. I guess I wasn't much of a student because I'd have chosen activity over homework when her age. And even the younger people say time goes fast, I thought just the older people felt that way. 

 

 

It is different, that is very true.

Link to comment
15 hours ago, Hamba Tuhan said:

I was first called as a counsellor in the bishopric in 2012. As second counsellor, I oversaw the deacons quorum. I attended all quorum (and quorum presidency!) meetings. I attended all activities. I picked boys up for church and activities and dropped them home again. When the quorum adviser (a policeman) had to work on Sundays, I taught lessons too, as directed by the quorum president. What I didn't do -- because it's wrong! -- was to plan or execute activities. That's the role of the quorum presidency, and they did it well because we'd trained them right.

There are literally no 'additional responsibilities' for those who were following the Handbook ten years ago.

If everyone had been understanding the handbook that way before, I doubt there would have been a need to make the changes that were made.  Maybe there are some implications there (in the need for the change that was made) that should be considered and acknowledged.

Link to comment
43 minutes ago, bluebell said:

It does not diminish the value, but where there is little consensus, it does diminish the value of a single author's views (that others disagree with).  And you are right, I have not read that book.  I have not read most books, by a vast majority.  There are simply too many of them.

CFR that there is little consensus. This seems your own conclusion without anything other than you seem to want to dismiss and disparage those who write on the issue.

43 minutes ago, bluebell said:

I've studied the topic some, but that book did not come up so it was not a part of that study.

I have absolutely no issues with you thinking whatever you like.  My only issue is when you elevate your thoughts to facts, which you often do.  As I said before, there's where you'll get pushback from me (and many others).

 

Where did I say my thought on this were facts?  Just sharing like I see it. I offer my views no more as facts than you do or most anyone here. I do think that if anyone who reads enough about the subject anyone who can be objective about it (which most cannot especially when they are in the thick of the organization that uses cult like techniques) it becomes pretty clear that these attributes can be found in the  church.  You disagree. Maybe it hits to close to home for most active members to be objective about it. I would have responded that way as an active member.

Link to comment
1 hour ago, Teancum said:

I am not an apologist for the author or her book.  I think the book is better than her web site.  Her book is one of a number I have on the topic.

I'm not super interested in the topic. It's been more a side note when looking into groups like hasidic/orthodox jews.  It can be either neutral or negative in use, depending who is using it and how their biases shape their views on more structured groups. Most the groups I've seen this applied to seem at fact value for more strict than the LDS faith in aggregate (again, there are pockets of more rigid communities). 

1 hour ago, Teancum said:

I am sorry but I find the argument that these are all old quotes weak sauce. And the book has more current sources as well. I could pick plenty of comment from current leaders. The recent talk by President Oaks and BYU on the two greatest commandments and the first superseding the second and following the prophets.  A talk by Elder Ballard on "where will you go" annd "stay in the boat." Two earrings and a Bednar talk about a RM dumping his GF because she had two earrings and that indicates she might not follow the prophet in all things.  Heck the whole two earring thing was totally cult like.  One talk was taken way to far. No beards for temple workers and on and on. All of these examples fall into various categories of control type messaging.

You're allowed to find it weak. I don't I know she uses more quotes that are more recent. She had an Oaks talk bingo card in one of her articles with varying jargon labels to look for in the talk. My problem with both her using old quotes and what you describe here is a problem of balance in critique and display. It gives a stagnant absolutist church, when we're more dynamic and have more variety in positions than we're given credit for. With the balance many (if not most) of her arguments to pidgeon us in the BITE model of cults begins to fall apart. Because for every Oaks talk there's a lovely Uchtdorf one to balance it out. There are talks trying to address compassionately issues of abuse and depression in just about each GC in the last couple of year. We are not a monolith in how we engage , not even in the highest levels of leadership...but especially in how it is applied in the ward, peer, and family level. 1 Earrings lasted a couple years, it wasn't super unreasonable at the time, but became anachronistic when trying to convey keeping a nice presentable appearance . Similar to how long skirts died out. At this point several people have multiple earings and few think twice about what it "says" because it's just a common beauty option. Heck with my migraines, I've had more than 1 active member ask me if I'll get a second piercing in my cartilage to help. Similar to beards. Though The temple is yet a great example of the balance trying to be struck by rules and compassion. Temple workers often have a different set of rules to follow. They're more strict than average callings. Yet they've also loosened somewhat, and what is officially directed to workers in temple lesson videos is one of open compassion and reducing judging patrons based on appearance among other things. It's NOT to over-police patrons into following what we may deem "respectful" or "better" for the temple.

1 hour ago, Teancum said:

But again, the Church needs to own what its leaders say no matter when they say it.  You may be to young for 30 to 40 year old comments. But I am not.  I grew up with them as have many members and they had an impact and still do.

 

I do not hold a standard that we need to "own" previous teachings, beyond acknowledging they're there and you can find them. It was easy enough to dig each of them up on the LDS website. But I prefer promoting and focusing on the changes made while contextualizing where past ones come from and both their value and limitations in their time. AND how we need to continue growing as we come to understand things differently or meet some of the concerns. How imporant it is to recognize that is equally part of this church experience. I know many of these comments still have an effect now, particularly with older generations. And thus how older gens may approach topics in lessons and even leadership practice (Gen x +). But Again, that's only part of the story. And if one stays stuck with 40 year teachings you're going to miss the higher purposes of the church in terms of continuing revelation, dynamic organization and discussion between average members and lay-leadership. You'll miss the pushes to have more collaborative and careful conversations. You'll miss different narratives, experiences, and views within a large and diverse church. And that's my problem. In order to get to her conclusion you have to flatten the church into a stereoytpe based on a singular form of experience within it. 

1 hour ago, Teancum said:

I don't know what church you grew up in nor what you taught your kids if you have them but this was al part of the messaging I got and gaev to my children who range from 40 to 27.

I'm 34. My daughter is 3 for a reference point. I was raised by a mom who was very culturally mormon and relied on a more conservative background/reading of the church. Her views were stuck in another time and place....one I would have limited access to for most of my formative years. My husband is peruvian and raised by solid parents who converted when he was really young...then leaving and coming back himself in his late teens after exploring varying religions and beliefs. Netiher of our experiences fully fit these descriptors, and that's a big problem IMHO. Particularly when labeling and describing the church in aggregate.

1 hour ago, Teancum said:

Not really.  I can find all sorts of things currently as noted above.

And I can find several that don't or have several caveats to them.

1 hour ago, Teancum said:

 

 

2 hour church-came after the book was written.

 

Callings-I have had many calling that take 8 plus hours. BR Counselor, bishop, YM president, Ward Mission Leader, EQ president Stake HC-heck that could take an entire Sunday when I had to trave l to speak and a unit a long way from my home.  Plus it is not just callings.  It is activites youth activities, getting teens to seminary, temple attendance, family history, journaling, etc

 

 

FHE-yes that is a variable.

 

Scripture/Prayer-variable.  I know I spent hours a week on these things.

But are we talking 22 hrs consistently. Not just in a handful of higher demand callings. My most time consuming church activies/experiences were as follows: Mission by far, sunday church, temple worker, YW's leader, and going to Seminary. The most (minus mission) would have been the mix of seminary, weekly activities, and church, I did pray and read daily. that would have equaled 10-14 hrs a week...most things falling of or slowing during holidays and summers. As a temple worker, I had around 4 hr shifts, plus church (3, mostly), plus calling (I prefered some sort of teaching calling as a YSA and usually got them; it also seconded as my scripture study...so I'll say 4 hrs). So at best that's around 11.  Mission obviously entailed a hyper focus on churchy things. That's the only time my personal interests and ideas for down time seriously took a hit. But again that's a short period of time and I knew it would. My shortest periods of churchy things were likely early marriage and with young baby. At times I didn't have a calling at all...or one that was intermittent. So church things went down to 2-3 hrs a week...at most maybe 6 if I had a calling. I'm not saying that being a "good mormon" can't take a lot of time. It can. But not usually 22hrs worth for the vast majority of members. There's 168 hrs in a week. 49-56 of those should be sleep. If you work a 40 hr work week that leaves at least 72 hours. Even if you worked at a calling for 22 hours, that leaves 50 hours of unspent time. That's a little over 7 hrs a day (I'll give 3 extra for small daily tasks....so 4). So even if that were true, you'd still have free time and her argument relies on the idea that you can never take time off from said calling too. It just doesn't work. MOST of our time isn't used for church related things. Most of us have and make time to play in non-churchy ways. And the crux of her argument is that we are soooo busy we never get time to chill. It's not so.

Also, some things I don't know if I count as church because I like them and would do them anyways. Just because it's advanced as a good thing to do by the church, doesn't make it a church outlet. I've mentioned gardening, but I also like journaling to clear my head, and I like family history gathering because It fills blanks I have about my heritage.  

1 hour ago, Teancum said:

As noted this is just one of many books on high demand cult like techniques.  Don't like this book?  Fine. As mentioned I am not an apologist for the book.

Ok. Like I said I was bored, so I read parts of the article instead to get a feel.

1 hour ago, Teancum said:

I don't know much about 7th Day Adventists but based on what little I do know I would not be surprised to find them lumped into a high demand group. I think many evangelical groups fall into the mix.  I think mamy multi level marketing groups fall into the category.  As for recent labeling of the church as what a HDG?  I do not know timing or anything.  Most use the work cult.  As noted I do not. But I think outside the church calling the church a cult is not new.  ut that term was more used by other Christian critics and they use it in a different way meaning a pseudo Christian sect that is not orthodox though most when they hear the term don't interpret it that way.  Anecdotally I think you may be surprised how many outside the church have long viewed it a cult like.  Heck my mother in law thought her daughter was joining up with a group like the moonies when my wife joined. I have heard similar comments from others all my adult life.

I know fairly little as well. I had a friend in high school and taught/shared a meal with one on my mission. What I do know is via random moments of curiosity on tangential topics (like blue zone groups). It doesn't surprise me that they would be called a cult via certain conservative christian groups. They're different and have a differing POV on christianity. That's usually enough to demonize them in those circles. I'm also most certainly unsurprised how many view us a cult outside the church. I lived in Texas in the bible belt. That seemed to be a hub for labeling us a cult. Softer versions would usually include fraud and deceived. Derogatory stereotypes included sheeple, racist, and secretive. If I sat and thought about it, I could probably think of more that I've heard over the years. What did surprise me was just how much the HDG label was getting traction in certain ex-lds/post mormon circles....insomuch that it was leading to different algorithm reads than another group with similar stricter values. The HDG label was there prior...usually left to small research papers or casual examples on sites like I posted previously giving examples of it. To me that shows this label has gotten disproportionately popular among certain circles. BUT when I read the reasoning, I don't see a ton of difference between how this term is used now to how those previous labels were used then. They're just a little softer and give a better air of analysis. 

Honestly when I read some of this, it just looks like critique coming from certain people who find more value in another way of living. Which kudos to them. I just wish people would keep better tabs on their biases when groups that range in practice widely all the sudden can be lumped in one label that is then taken usually negatively. 

 

With luv,

BD

Link to comment
1 hour ago, Teancum said:

CFR that there is little consensus. This seems your own conclusion without anything other than you seem to want to dismiss and disparage those who write on the issue.

There is little consensus on the definition of what a cult is.  Some attempt to apply it to every religion for example, others only to religions that they don't agree with or like, but most only apply it to those religions who espouse "socially deviant" teachings and practices.  And even people who agree on the definition don't necessarily apply it the same way.

Quote

Where did I say my thought on this were facts?  Just sharing like I see it. I offer my views no more as facts than you do or most anyone here. I do think that if anyone who reads enough about the subject anyone who can be objective about it (which most cannot especially when they are in the thick of the organization that uses cult like techniques) it becomes pretty clear that these attributes can be found in the  church.  You disagree. Maybe it hits too close to home for most active members to be objective about it. I would have responded that way as an active member.

To the bold, when questioned about the church dominating members time to control them you replied "I know the truth hurts."   When I said that you couldn't possible support a Call for References to support that statement of fact you posted a link to the book/website on how the church is a cult as your statement of support.

So yes, you did say (more than once) that your thoughts on this were facts.

On the underlined, you always go back to this idea that we only don't agree with you because we don't want to face the truth.  :rolleyes: 

Link to comment
1 hour ago, bluebell said:

There is little consensus on the definition of what a cult is.  Some attempt to apply it to every religion for example, others only to religions that they don't agree with or like, but most only apply it to those religions who espouse "socially deviant" teachings and practices.  And even people who agree on the definition don't necessarily apply it the same way.

To the bold, when questioned about the church dominating members time to control them you replied "I know the truth hurts."   When I said that you couldn't possible support a Call for References to support that statement of fact you posted a link to the book/website on how the church is a cult as your statement of support.

So yes, you did say (more than once) that your thoughts on this were facts.

On the underlined, you always go back to this idea that we only don't agree with you because we don't want to face the truth.  :rolleyes: 

Ok all fair enough. I think we have beat this one up enough. 

Link to comment

Sorry, one more thing: I was still a little bored today and found this quiz about HDG's that you can score. It was one mormon stories, but it's framed to be fairly generic. I took it and scored around a B range (there were several that I could kinda see from other's experiences that I've known even if they weren't mine. So I gave those a .5 or .25 depending how often I recall those). Most of my personal experiences were 0 or 1, with one 2. At the end I looked at some of the comments and wasn't surprise that many former LDS rated far higher (a score of a D or an F)

It seems like a perfect example of how perspective really effects what one experiences or recalls experiencing. 

Here's the quiz if anyone's curious and/or bored

 quiz: https://Mormon*******.***/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/Was-I-Raised-in-a-Cult-A-Self-Assessment.pdf

Responces: https://Mormon*******.***/podcast/was-i-raised-in-a-cult-or-high-demand-religion-a-self-assessment/

 

With luv,

BD

Edited by BlueDreams
Link to comment
1 hour ago, BlueDreams said:

Sorry, one more thing: I was still a little bored today and found this quiz about HDG's that you can score. It was one mormon stories, but it's framed to be fair generic. I took it and scored around a B range (there were several that I could kinda see from other's experiences that I've known even if they weren't mine. So I gave those a .5 or .25 depending how often I recall those). Most of my personal experiences were 0 or 1, with one 2. At the end I looked at some of the comments and wasn't surprise that many former LDS rated far higher (a score of a D or an F)

It seems like a perfect example of how perspective really effects what one experiences or recalls experiencing. 

Here's the quiz if anyone's curious and/or bored

 quiz: https://Mormon*******.***/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/Was-I-Raised-in-a-Cult-A-Self-Assessment.pdf

Responces: https://Mormon*******.***/podcast/was-i-raised-in-a-cult-or-high-demand-religion-a-self-assessment/

 

With luv,

BD

I'll have to do it later when not on my phone.  PDFs and phones don't work well.

I did find the cutesy pictures annoying given the serious topic.

Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...