Sunday, November 23, 2014

Agency and Morality

I wonder and I wonder at the concept of agency...

What does it mean to choose? Are we free to choose or are we punished if we make a choice that is counter to the *right* choice?  According to the Mormon church, there is ONLY one choice, to do what they tell you:

"When our leaders speak, the thinking has been done. When they propose a plan--it is God's Plan. When they point the way, there is no other which is safe. When they give directions, it should mark the end of controversy, God works in no other way. To think otherwise, without immediate repentance, may cost one his faith, may destroy his testimony, and leave him a stranger to the kingdom of God."
Ward Teachers Message, Deseret News, Church Section p. 5, May 26, 1945
Also included in the Improvement Era, June 1945 (which was the official church magazine before the Ensign)

"Always keep your eye on the President of the church, and if he ever tells you to do anything, even if it is wrong, and you do it, the lord will bless you for it but you don't need to worry. The lord will never let his mouthpiece lead the people astray."
LDS President Marion G. Romney (of the first presidency), quoting LDS President (and prophet) Heber J. Grant "Conference Report" Oct. 1960 p. 78

"When the Prophet speaks the debate is over".
N. Eldon Tanner, August Ensign 1979, pages 2-3

"Follow your leaders who have been duly ordained and have been publicly sustained, and you will not be led astray."
Boyd K. Packer (General Conference, Oct. 1992; Ensign, Nov. 1992)

Yes, from the times of Brigham Young: "The Lord Almighty leads this Church, and he will never suffer you to be led astray if you are found doing your duty. You may go home and sleep as sweetly as a babe in its mother's arms, as to any danger of your leaders leading you astray, for if they should try to do so the Lord would quickly sweep them from the earth."
Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 9, p. 289, 1862.

To today, the leaders of the Mormon church have claimed that they speak for god  and will not lead us astray. There have been recent developments that have led many people to have a crisis of faith and to attempt to stem this, the leaders are once again telling the people to not trust in their own moral compass, but to trust in the leaders of the church. In the most recent Ensign article, the  LDS leaders want you to trust them even when they have lied to you 

I left the Mormon church BEFORE I knew that Joseph Smith took other men's wives from them (the church calls this polyandry, but since polygamy and all its various forms was illegal at the time, then these marriages were illegal so he was in fact just engaging in adultery. He also lied to Emma, his only legal wife. He also used manipulation to gain access to girls as young as 14 years old.  Link to LDS acknowledgments

I left because it isn't right to discriminate against people because their skin color is different than my own.
I left because it isn't right to discriminate against people because their sexuality is different than my own.
I left because it isn't right to discriminate against people because their gender is different than yours.
I left because it isn't right to pursue the impossible idea of perfection at the cost of being your best. I left because my moral compass compelled me to leave.

Why did I leave the Mormon church? I left because I could not trust priesthood authority over my own thoughts/feelings/intuition/spirituality.

Too many times the priesthood authority said what was right contradicted my moral compass and in the end, I must follow my own moral compass.

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