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Polygamy


The Humanist

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Is the early practice of polygamy not evidence enough of Mormonism's falsehood? How could those such as Joseph Smith or Brigham Young, claiming to be direct emmissaries to God, possibly encourage the practice of taking more than one wife, engaging in what could only be termed "multiple, internally adulterous affairs," when the institution of marriage is clearly intended as a means of signifying the union of two souls in love (As opposed to multiple females joinig in subservience to a single male)?

-The Humanist

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Have you seen the topic "Could Jospeh Smith be a Fallen Prophet?" We have been talking a lot about polygamy on this thread this month if you want to read it.

This is an issue that I think is going to start causing some problems for faithful members of our church. There is a lot of talk going around Relief Society because of Martha Beck's new book. Women are finding out things about our Prophets that we can't believe. That's why I am here. I had no idea about any of the polygamy history.

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I can't tell you how absolutely thrilled I am that you're willing to investigate this issue, rather than simply gloss over it (like so many who encounter threats to their doctrine). So long as your not attending B.Y.U.[,] simply approach any one of your American History professors on the subject, and you'll no doubt recieve more information on what actually transpired during the days of Mormon polygamy than you've ever wanted to know. I forget what the old stand-by excuse was for those inquiring to Mormon clergy about polygamy; I only remember how woefully insufficient it was and how it left those who bothered to ask with even more questions and growing doubt with regard to their faith.

Again, kudos to you.

-The Humanist

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when the institution of marriage is clearly intended as a means of signifying the union of two souls in love

Who declared this as a universal law? And why is marriage defined union of two souls, and not one man to one woman?

I don't wish to be rude (honest! :P) but your argument is extremely weak. You have declared a definition of marriage, but have made no argument why your particular definition of marriage is morally correct. Then armed with your definition, you in one gigantic swoop exclaim that Mormonism in false.

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If "by their fruits ye shall know them is true", how can polygamy be a true principle of the Christian people ? I was amazed at some of the things from the following website that describes the impact that polygamy is still having upon many, even today. It suggests to me that Joseph Smith was not acting as a prophet - or even with the Holy Spirit - when he introduced it and practiced it.

Polygamy Information Website

God Bless,

Hal.

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Is the early practice of polygamy not evidence enough of Mormonism's falsehood?

Is the early practice of polygamy by the Patriarchs not evidence enough of all of religion's falsehood?

(As opposed to multiple females joinig in subservience to a single male)?

Are you as distraught over a single female in subservience to a single male?

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Have you seen the topic "Could Jospeh Smith be a Fallen Prophet?" We have been talking a lot about polygamy on this thread this month if you want to read it.

This is an issue that I think is going to start causing some problems for faithful members of our church. There is a lot of talk going around Relief Society because of Martha Beck's new book. Women are finding out things about our Prophets that we can't believe. That's why I am here. I had no idea about any of the polygamy history.

Lori,

Martha Beck's book is very difficult to take seriously. How many danite groups have you seen in Provo these days? How many ritualistic murders have you read about in the newspaper recently that have the imprint of the Mormon church? How many phone connections are routed through the local LDS churches? How many wild stories does someone get to tell before we stop believing them?

As for plural marriage--we have known about it since the 1850's. It shouldn't be a suprise. Books have been written about this for the past 150 years.

And why do you say "women are finding out?" Don't you really mean "I am finding out?" At least one of the biggest researchers on plural marriage is a woman. The fact that you don't know something shouldn't be turned into a universal truth.

Scott

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when the institution of marriage is clearly intended as a means of signifying the union of two souls in love

Who declared this as a universal law? And why is marriage defined union of two souls, and not one man to one woman?

I don't wish to be rude (honest! :P) but your argument is extremely weak. You have declared a definition of marriage, but have made no argument why your particular definition of marriage is morally correct. Then armed with your definition, you in one gigantic swoop exclaim that Mormonism in false.

I qualify my arguament with (dare I say) common sense. You're correct, I have no authoratative, biblical text evidence to qualify my assertion, only what I believe in my heart and what seems, to me, to be correct ("Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense" -Buddha_. Just the same, your argument -- that marriage can indeed take place between multiple individuals -- is a matter of personal opinion that I happen to disagree with. I can't make the definitive argument that marriage should be constrainied to that of between a man and a woman, but plural marriage has indeed long been considered, by every industrialized nation, a deplorable practice that degrades women and (to add yet another personal opinion) utterly desanctifies the institution of love -- upon which marriage is based.

-The Humanist

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Is the early practice of polygamy not evidence enough of Mormonism's falsehood? 

Is the early practice of polygamy by the Patriarchs not evidence enough of all of religion's falsehood?

(As opposed to multiple females joinig in subservience to a single male)?

Are you as distraught over a single female in subservience to a single male?

In a good and loving marriage, neither partner is subservient to the other. And in implying that ealry Patriarchs' plural marriages were, by the same right, proof of their falsehood, you may be on to something...

-The Humanist

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If "by their fruits ye shall know them is true", how can polygamy be a true principle of the Christian people ? I was amazed at some of the things from the following website that describes the impact that polygamy is still having upon many, even today. It suggests to me that Joseph Smith was not acting as a prophet - or even with the Holy Spirit - when he introduced it and practiced it.

Polygamy Information Website

God Bless,

Hal.

Amen.

-The Humanist

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I qualify my arguament with (dare I say) common sense. You're correct, I have no authoratative, biblical text evidence to qualify my assertion, only what I believe in my heart and what seems, to me, to be correct.  ("Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense" -Buddha_. Just the same, your argument -- that marriage can indeed take place between multiple individuals -- is a matter of personal opinion that I happen to disagree with.

Well, if this is a debate of opinions, then your initial inquiry is already answered.

Is the early practice of polygamy not evidence enough of Mormonism's falsehood?

Answer: Ultimately, it depends on what your opinion is.

How uninsightful. Were you hoping for a more concrete answer?

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Joseph Smith was studing the Bible, he ran accross passages indicating that revered Patriarchs and prophets of old were polygamists raised questions that prompted the Prophet to inquire of the Lord about marriage in general and about plurality of wives in particular. He then learned that when the Lord commanded it, as he had with the Patriarchs anciently, a man could have more than one living wife at a time and not be condemned for adultery. He also understood that the Church would one day be required to live the law. This was written a decade latter on July 12, 1843 (D&C 132:1

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So long as your not attending B.Y.U.[,] simply approach any one of your American History professors on the subject, and you'll no doubt recieve more information on what actually transpired during the days of Mormon polygamy than you've ever wanted to know.

Do you know any American history professors at BYU? It hardly sounds like it. Kathryn Daynes can tell you all that you need to know about polygamy. She wrote her dissertation under the tutelage of Jan Shipps, a non-LDS Mormon scholar. She first felt the need to write on polygamy after she discovered that her great-great-great (I think) grandmother was married as a plural wife at age 14. She thought, "Why would that happen?" And she researched. You seem like you think so highly of your own mind and knowledge that you come of sounding like a real ignorant *** (I'm sure you're not, but you sound like one).

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I can't tell you how absolutely thrilled I am that you're willing to investigate this issue, rather than simply gloss over it (like so many who encounter threats to their doctrine).

You obviously haven't been here long. Check out the other 20+ threads on this issue from the past month.

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How uninsightful. Were you hoping for a more concrete answer?

Perhaps you're right. Perhaps simply because it is my personal opinion that murder is wrong doesn't actually mean that it is. What, ahem, "concrete" evidence do I have to support that it's wrong after all? Perhaps nothing is wrong and nothing is right, and we're all just out to discredit and degrade one another. Then again, perhaps we could carry-on an intelligent discussion without dead-ending wherever an indisputable truth cannot be proven (for, as the scientific process has taguht us, no single fact can be definitively proven, only strongly supported by evidence or, in this case, the much-despised "personal opinion").

-The Humanist

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Perhaps you're right. Perhaps simply because it is my personal opinion that murder is wrong doesn't actually mean that it is. What, ahem, "concrete" evidence do I have to support that it's wrong after all?

You already stated that my opinion of marriage's definition does not match yours. So, on that matter, we disagree by matter of opinion. As for murder, I agree with you, murder is wrong.

It appears we agree in one aspect, and disagree on another. How boring.

Then again, perhaps we could carry-on an intelligent discussion without dead-ending wherever an indisputable truth cannot be proven

Then you should have explained this was your goal in your initial post. Besides, your discussions aren't even about debating opinions. You just repeatedly state yours. What's so interesting about that? Billions of people can repeatedly state their opinions too. As far as I'm concerned, unless you can state a new, insightful idea, then the discussion has already reached a dead end.

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Is the early practice of polygamy not evidence enough of Mormonism's falsehood? How could those such as Joseph Smith or Brigham Young, claiming to be direct emmissaries to God, possibly encourage the practice of taking more than one wife, engaging in what could only be termed "multiple, internally adulterous affairs," when the institution of marriage is clearly intended as a means of signifying the union of two souls in love (As opposed to multiple females joinig in subservience to a single male)?

-The Humanist

If we assume the terms of the marriage arrangement are based on principles revealed from God, then we must leave it up to God to dictate his own rules. Then in fact the implementation of plural marriage is actually evidence of mormonism's divine origin.

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Hi H... :P

when the institution of marriage is clearly intended as a means of signifying the union of two souls in love (As opposed to multiple females joinig in subservience to a single male)?

IN MY OPINION, the history of marriage is a bit more complex than this. I personally don't think it started out having much of anything to do with love.

I do believe however that humankind has evolved to a place where we have deep emotions of romantic love and compassion and with these developments came the beauty of a union between two people.

Just my opinion,

<_<

~dancer~

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Humanist

What makes Your opinion right? What is the basis of your opinion? IS there even a basis? or did you just wake up one morning and said "Hey I think polygamy is wrong and I am gonna let those stupid mormons know." This board is meant for discussion. We need your background info to let us know the basis of your bias.

Ashy

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IN MY OPINION, the history of marriage is a bit more complex than this.  I personally don't think it started out having much of anything to do with love.

There's an excellent article on the history of marriage at the link below, with an entire several paragraph section on polygamy and polyandry:

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09693a.htm

Here are a couple of interesting quotes from the article:

One deviation from the typical form of secular union which, however, is also called marriage, is polyandry, the union of several husbands with one wife. It has been practised at various times by a considerable number of people or tribes. It existed among the ancient Britons, the primitive Arabs, the inhabitants of the Canary Islands, the Aborigines of America, the Hottentots, the inhabitants of India, Ceylon, Thibet, Malabar, and New Zealand. In the great majority of these instances polyandry was the exceptional form of conjugal union.
Among the principal causes of polygamy are: the relative scarcity of males, arising sometimes from numerous destructive wars, and sometimes from an excess of female births; the unwillingness of the husband to remain continent when intercourse with one wife is undesirable or impossible; and unrestrained lustful cravings. Still another cause, or more properly a condition, is a certain degree of economic advancement in a people, and a certain amount of wealth accumulated by some individuals.
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the / any middle ground on polygamy...Non-existent, isn't it?

Actually, I do believe there is little Biblical reference to 'true' polygamy - multiple sanctioned Wives - as was practiced by BY and possibly JS. Does anyone know regarding what U.S. laws (statutes) might have applied to Utah before statehood, before the laws referred to in the 'Manifesto' of 1890 (Edmunds-Tucker; ch. 397 24 stat 635)?

I'm sure the church silence on this is mirrors the 'position' on the MMM;

the GA's 'just wish it would Go Away'!

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Truth Dancer is correct in the establishment of marriage. Love hasn't had much to do with it until recently (even biblically, look at Isaac and Rebekah). We have so many telling us polygamy has to be wrong. We of the west hate polygamy, why? I don't understand. We used this as a method to determine is a culture was civilized (which is why the Europeans during the crusades felt more civilized than their Muslim counterparts). It comes off as narrowness or thought if one states we, as Mormons, were wrong to practice polygamy without stating why. Truth Dancer and I have had some discussions concerning this and haven't been able to determine which is the least educated in this but I doubt either one of us ever thought we would change the other.

Humanist,

Throughout history polygamy has been an accepted form of marriage. You may not like it but your opinion holds little weight. Why do you not like it? Wouldn't developing "oneness" with more than one person be agreater challenge? Isn't polygamy a greater challenge than monogamy? Wouldn't cause much greater growth on all sides due to the dynamics of the relationship? You may not like polygamy (or the scholarship at BYU,for that matter) but it doesn't change the fact God instituted it and condones it.

Dr Fatguy

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