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Bishop asks: Do you understand the word of wisdom? If answer is no, interview ends in failure. If answer is yes, is the applicant  lying? I answered no. I admit I do not know everything. Do some other people know everything? I later asked someone (missionaries) who answered yes, and I found they know less about it than I do. For example, the definition of tea.  The word of wisdom has many viewpoints: literal, historical, and medical for a start. So what am I missing? What am I being asked?

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, ce4 said:

answer is no, interview ends in failure

Why would it end in failure?  Why not discuss it?  What did the bishop or whoever interviewed you tell you said no?  Did he understand you were responding to the “understand” part and not the “obey” part (assuming you are not drinking alcohol, tea, coffee or smoking)?

You need to understand the part of the word of wisdom that the Church requires you to understand, not the whole revelation and what the Spirit can teach you.  The Church has a very simple and consistent way of teaching it.  See link below.

The part to obey is what you have covenanted to do, which is abstain from tobacco, coffee and tea (not including herbal infusions, often called herbal teas as they are not of the same plant) and alcohol.

If the Spirit has inspired you that you should also obey the ‘using the good food for the body’ part as well, then it is up to you whether or not you are doing that sufficiently and whether or not you are inspired to make that part of your interview question.  You can always discuss this with your bishop.

As for the rest, what the blessings are to mean for you and anything else you might not understand, studying it with the Spirit and trying to live as the Spirit teaches you is what is expected of you, imo. 

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/topics/word-of-wisdom?lang=eng

If we assume God inspired the format of the interview questions and what is being asked, then it makes sense to assume the Church is capable of teaching what is needed to qualify to receive a recommend, etc even if there is much about the gospel that must come from the Spirit. I see no reason to make it more complicated than what the Church does if the Church is God’s authorized representative in this way. 

Edited by Calm
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Thank you Calm for quick answer, in your opinion. Here is my reply to what you said: I do not know Why would it ended in failure. I did discuss it. He Did understand I was responding to the “understand” part and not the “obey” part. I think I understand the part of the word of wisdom that the Church requires me to understand. (and what is that?). As I said, I know more than the missionaries. I already know what is in the link you gave me.

And here is new information: Also, I asked Bishop to give me a test to see if I understand whatever he is asking. He refused. I asked the missionaries, they were not helpful. I did much research.

And here is what is what I plan to do: Since the question is vague, I reserve the right to interpret it however I wish. This sounds like what lawyers do in court, but I am not educated in that.

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Posted (edited)

I just get the feeling you may be trying to use your insight, or other people's ignorance, as an excuse to absolve you of your obligation.

The "Word of Wisdom" he's talking about is a revised version that specifically prohibits alcohol, tobacco, coffee (any "ccinos") and tea (Camellia sinensis, most certainly black tea, if not also green and white tea), and illegal drugs (marijuana, etc) without a medical reason.

Bishops try not to interpret the policies for you, or reason with you over possible loopholes, as my Bishop says, "I teach correct principles and let the people govern themselves." They don't typically tell you how much to tithe, or tell you to wear garments 24/7, its up to you to figure it out; if you drink green tea to lose weight, or decaffeinated coffee to help your morning constitutional, or caffeinated cola or hot chocolate, keep your conscious clear and give an honest "yes" when he asks. Though its not exactly the Bishop's role to ensure the veracity of your answers, but its the Lord you'd be lying to.

On occasion, even Bishops don't understand sometimes. A Bishop in Japan wasn't issuing Temple Recommends to those who drank caffeinated soda. Then Apostle Thomas S. Monson went down there to meet him, opened the meeting by opening and sipping a Pepsi, and asked, "So, what seems to be the problem?"

Edited by Pyreaux
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To Calm:  I am a member. the interview is for the temple.

To Pyreaux:  You feel that I am  trying to fail the interview? I say I am not. Bishop specifically defined The "Word of Wisdom" as DC section 89. Nothing was said about is a revised version. So you agree that I should interpret the question however I wish?

Also, during interview I presented bishop with a one-page type-written report I made about the topic, some of the technical information was new to him. So this means he does not understand word of wisdom? This sounds like a logic problem to me.
 

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4 hours ago, ce4 said:

To Calm:  I am a member. the interview is for the temple.

To Pyreaux:  You feel that I am  trying to fail the interview? I say I am not. Bishop specifically defined The "Word of Wisdom" as DC section 89. Nothing was said about is a revised version. So you agree that I should interpret the question however I wish?

Also, during interview I presented bishop with a one-page type-written report I made about the topic, some of the technical information was new to him. So this means he does not understand word of wisdom? This sounds like a logic problem to me.
 

If you are going that hard at him, it seems as though you are trying to argue some point- so why not give us the rest of the story? With the pride you are displaying I get why your Bishop discerned there something being amiss.

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Posted (edited)

What about asking the bishop to schedule a different time than the interview to resolve your concerns about understanding the WoW well enough to go to the temple?  We do not need perfect understanding to be worthy or no one would be able to pass the interview, so if you discuss what is required with the bishop prior to your next interview, that could resolve your concerns about not understanding the WoW sufficiently.

I assume you wish to go to the temple, but perhaps you are more interested in how the interview reflects your discipleship and are using the interview to focus on that?  As a checklist for yourself?  Perhaps you could share more of your purpose for saying “no” when you must realize if you have been a member for a while that a “no” prevents you from receiving a recommend.

Edited by Calm
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, ce4 said:

This sounds like a logic problem to me

Out of curiosity, do you see this happening a lot in how leaders approach teachings?  Or is this something new for you that has occurred as you studied the gospel more?  

If you have had other temple recommend interviews, have you answered “yes” or “no” to this question before and if “yes”, why have you changed your answer in your view?  If “no”, have you ever discussed the topic with your leaders before to express your concerns?  Is this the only “no” for you in the entire interview?

 I am trying to figure out what the greater context of comments is to better answer you.

Edited by Calm
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, ce4 said:

To Calm:  I am a member. the interview is for the temple.

To Pyreaux:  You feel that I am  trying to fail the interview? I say I am not. Bishop specifically defined The "Word of Wisdom" as DC section 89. Nothing was said about is a revised version. So you agree that I should interpret the question however I wish?

Also, during interview I presented bishop with a one-page type-written report I made about the topic, some of the technical information was new to him. So this means he does not understand word of wisdom? This sounds like a logic problem to me.
 

The “failure” could have had more to do with how you said what you said than what you said. Whether intentional or not, you very well could have been conveying the perception of a generalized negative attitude toward the church that caused the bishop to “feel off” about the interview. And it could also be that prior to the interview the bishop may have already observed or discerned that you tend to have a contrarian attitude toward the church that trends toward the diminishment of faith in the restoration. And while one can quibble about the finer points of the Word of Wisdom, what faithful Latter-Day Saint doesn’t understand that the the main thrust of the Word of Wisdom in today’s morally sick world is to eat a healthy diet and totally abstain from tobacco, alcoholic beverages, and the scores of mind altering and addicting drugs out there that are destroying hundreds of millions of lives as I write?

Ultimately, living the gospel boils down to having a strong testimony, a positive attitude and a living faith in Christ that combine to powerfully motivate the individual to repent daily and earnestly strive to become more and more like Christ. Meanwhile cynical, iconoclastic and nitpicking attitudes are not the characteristic behaviors of those who are earnestly striving to be valiant in the testimony of Jesus.

Edited by teddyaware
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Posted (edited)
12 minutes ago, teddyaware said:

Meanwhile cynical, iconoclastic and nitpicking attitudes are not the characteristic behaviors of those who are earnestly striving to be valiant in the testimony of Jesus.

Nitpicking or being highly detailed oriented may be a result of a prideful or cynical way of looking at things (as in pride that one has greater knowledge than others) or it may simply being a different way of processing information that has nothing to do with pride, but with how one has been trained to think about/process information or naturally does so (such as those on the autism spectrum).  Therefore you might want to remove “nitpicking” from your list to avoid the implication that nitpicking is always a negative way of approaching finding truth.

Speaking as someone who has been a nitpicker in many others’ eyes because it’s the small details that best illuminate the big picture for me (though not sure if it’s because of upbringing or nature).

Edited by Calm
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My memory isn't that good anymore but I don't recall being asked if I understand a law, just if I obey it. The law of Chastity has areas that a BYU student might understand differently than I do. At least that is what I have heard. 😈

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12 hours ago, ce4 said:

Bishop asks: Do you understand the word of wisdom? If answer is no, interview ends in failure. If answer is yes, is the applicant  lying? I answered no. I admit I do not know everything. Do some other people know everything? I later asked someone (missionaries) who answered yes, and I found they know less about it than I do. For example, the definition of tea.  The word of wisdom has many viewpoints: literal, historical, and medical for a start. So what am I missing? What am I being asked?

Whether or not you understand the WoW is just one part of the temple recommend interview question on the topic, so if you answer no, that's not a failure.  It's a chance for you and the bishop to discuss the topic and for you to learn more.

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1 hour ago, blackstrap said:

My memory isn't that good anymore but I don't recall being asked if I understand a law, just if I obey it. The law of Chastity has areas that a BYU student might understand differently than I do. At least that is what I have heard. 😈

I looked it up and the question is:

Do you understand and obey the Word of Wisdom?

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To: ZealouslyStriving
Yes, I do like to argue. It is fun and educational. And the interview was a good opertunity. That is the rest of the story, that I can think of. And I suppose I am proud. But the main reason of interview was that I was told I should get a temple recommend.

To: Calm
I have occasional annual meetings with Bishop, that is enough. Then I do have ongoing discussions with him. Yes, I wish to go to the temple. But not lie to get there. No, I am not more interested in how the interview reflects my discipleship. Yes, this is a checklist for myself. My purpose for saying “no” is to be honest, but I am beginning to suspect I misunderstand the question. As I said, I reserve the right to give a vague answer to a vague question.

This paragraph might be jiberish because I do not understand your question: Yes, I see this happening a lot in how leaders approach teachings. One principle of the gospel is to pick a side and argue for it. Sometimes the correct side and argument gives a burning in bousem. As you can see, I am putting effort into finding an answer. No, this is not something new for me that has occurred as I studied the gospel more.  

To: Pyreaux
I made an error, here is the correction. Yes, revised version was mentioned in interview. But I tried to keep things simple by limiting discussion to official scripture. I have studied many commentaries, it seems they are just opinions.

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8 minutes ago, ce4 said:

To: ZealouslyStriving
Yes, I do like to argue. It is fun and educational. And the interview was a good opertunity. That is the rest of the story, that I can think of. And I suppose I am proud. But the main reason of interview was that I was told I should get a temple recommend.

First: Do you even want a Temple recommend?

Second: Arguing with the Bishop over the semantics of the Word of Wisdom will appear to some as you not taking it that seriously- even if that is not your intention.

Third: Coffee, tea made with tea leaves, any kind of drugs not prescribed by a doctor, alcohol.... Not permitted.

**Perhaps you could explain what about the Word of Wisdom is unclear to you?

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35 minutes ago, ce4 said:

To: ZealouslyStriving
Yes, I do like to argue. It is fun and educational. And the interview was a good opertunity. That is the rest of the story, that I can think of. And I suppose I am proud. But the main reason of interview was that I was told I should get a temple recommend.

To: Calm
I have occasional annual meetings with Bishop, that is enough. Then I do have ongoing discussions with him. Yes, I wish to go to the temple. But not lie to get there. No, I am not more interested in how the interview reflects my discipleship. Yes, this is a checklist for myself. My purpose for saying “no” is to be honest, but I am beginning to suspect I misunderstand the question. As I said, I reserve the right to give a vague answer to a vague question.

This paragraph might be jiberish because I do not understand your question: Yes, I see this happening a lot in how leaders approach teachings. One principle of the gospel is to pick a side and argue for it. Sometimes the correct side and argument gives a burning in bousem. As you can see, I am putting effort into finding an answer. No, this is not something new for me that has occurred as I studied the gospel more.  

To: Pyreaux
I made an error, here is the correction. Yes, revised version was mentioned in interview. But I tried to keep things simple by limiting discussion to official scripture. I have studied many commentaries, it seems they are just opinions.

Arguing isn’t always something to be proud of. In some instances, it’s a sign of arrogance, and an unwillingness to learn and grow. 

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To: ZealouslyStriving
Yes, I want a Temple recommend. To avoid argument, I could silently interpret the vague question any way I wish and simply answer yes. One viewpoint of the Word of Wisdom that is unclear to me is medical. I have not gone to medical school. I feel that no one has a complete understanding of Word of Wisdom. Or does the question imply a complete understanding? I have not studied logic, but for now I can assume it does not.

 

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Posted (edited)

Over the years I’ve had some very sweet experiences conducting and receiving temple recommend interviews.  In conducting such interviews I was often prompted to invite the member to share their feelings about the temple (or to share their feelings about temple prep if they hadn’t yet been endowed) or to ask if there were any experience in, or questions about, the temple they’d like to share.

 I’ve been known to ask interviewees open ended questions like, “share with me your understanding of the WofW”…A TR interview isn’t a spelling test.

Edited by let’s roll
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To: ZealouslyStriving
I do not know if inhaled tobacco interferes with the division of muscle cells.

Thank you bluebell for doing that research. I narrow it down to this question: Do you understand the Word of Wisdom? To explain the question, I suppose I need someone good with English, law, and logic. But I will be happy to take what I can get. Opinions are welcome.
Does the question mean: Do you understand (all about) the Word of Wisdom? Or does the question mean: Do you understand (at least one thing about) the Word of Wisdom? Or does the question mean something else? I have assumed it means all.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, blackstrap said:

My memory isn't that good anymore but I don't recall being asked if I understand a law, just if I obey it.

 

4 hours ago, bluebell said:

I looked it up and the question is:

Do you understand and obey the Word of Wisdom?

The understand part is new. I used to ask just about obeying.

Edited by ksfisher
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2 hours ago, ce4 said:

To: Pyreaux
I made an error, here is the correction. Yes, revised version was mentioned in interview. But I tried to keep things simple by limiting discussion to official scripture. I have studied many commentaries, it seems they are just opinions.

Vague as ever, reading between the lines, I suspect as far as keeping things simple, you've been showing the bishops and missionaries articles concerning the health benefits of tea and trying to browbeat them into submission. I can't say I approve if that is the case. It's one thing to not lie because you interpreted it yourself WITH divine guidance that may go against the typical understandings or maybe you are obeying, as you need your tea to flush your kidney of the other substances/medications you take, thus a "medical" reason; it's another to let worldly forces tell you what you want to reject it entirely, and not even try to obey the word of wisdom. I might dare say without a medical degree that the blessings of obedience can be heathier than tea. A sacrifice is always nice. The word of wisdom doesn't come with detailed reasons why tea is prohibited. The world once advocated the health benefits of smoking. There are certainly some worldly reasons to avoid tea. Caffeine is a mood-altering drug, once you start getting withdraw symptoms, the idea of rebellion against the word of wisdom might start looking like a good idea, but it could be the tea leaves talking.

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