Friday, January 8, 2016

Enter Captain Moroni. "The Mormon messianism of the Oregon occupiers."

I am reluctant to believe all of this critique, but I know from personal experience at Bundy Ranch that Ryan Payne insinuated himself into the good graces of the Bundy family by appearing to convert to their branch of LDS. It is also reported that Ammon believes that the occupation of the the park service property in Oregon is a chance to advance the cause of a "New Jerusalem" and that the occupiers are serving as the right arm of the Lord on earth, much like John Brown in 1859. I have neither the desire nor inclination to say that he is wrong and start some sort of sectarian strife, but I do know that his beliefs have apparently blinded him to the reality of embracing Ryan Payne, sociopath.
"Among the Malheur occupiers is Lavoy Finicum, a Mormon rancher from Arizona who is the author of Only By Blood and Suffering, a novel about one family’s efforts to 'survive in the face of devastating end-times chaos.' Yesterday, Finicum told reporters yesterday that he’d prefer death over prison. Ammon Bundy, the leader of the Malheur occupation, and his father Cliven, who gained national notoriety for a similar standoff at his Nevada ranch in 2014, likewise belong to the Skousenite wing of contemporary Mormonism."


Chiu ChunLing said...

People trying to find obscure religious foundations for the motivations of ordinary humans will inevitably fail. Humans are humans, they mostly have their motives and then they pick justifications after the fact. If you want to understand the motives, don't pore over hero-literature with which you have no familiarity, look at how you justify those motives in your own narrative idiom of life.

It is true that stories have power, but the most common stories are common because they justify the most common motivations. People pick hero-stories which reinforce the rightness of what they've decided to do anyway, not the other way round. It is true that LDS scripture and history provides plenty of hero-stories of resistance to unjust governments, but for a Church that is intent on international proselytes, most of whom live in countries with no tradition of Constitutionally protected human rights, those stories are inconvenient to the leadership's attempts to negotiate legal recognition and access.

Thus they are downplayed.

While to LDS members living in America and trying to defend their traditional Constitutional rights, those stories are vital.

There is another story, more obscure than most, which is relevant here. When the LDS church formally rejected polygamy, a number of the faithful refused to renounce their existing wives, and were excommunicated as a result. While some of these split off and founded their own factions (notably the FLDS, which still practices polygamy), some simply ignored the excommunication and continued to attend their former church. Several of these, after death, were quietly unexcommunicated administratively, including John W. Taylor (the son of a former prophet of the LDS church). There are some complex nuances here.

The takeaway is that the LDS church doesn't have nearly as much power to dictate morality to its membership as most people imagine. An excommunication for something many members think was justified just won't stick in the end, and those with deep roots in the faith (which could otherwise make excommunication seem unimaginable to them) know it.

Anonymous said...

This is definitely worth discussion, and it is not a pretty picture.

More to the point than the first post is the extreme gullibility of most Mormons. (If you look below the PR surface of Mormonism, it is a strange animal indeed. Few understand that Mormonism is polytheistic, but it is. Who else believes that God was once just a man who by his own efforts elevated himself to godhood, and that any man in the church can do the same? Or that God sneaked down as a man and had sex with the Virgin Mary to conceive Jesus?)

Here's another insight: Mormons are revered as good preppers, but that's largely PR as well. I'm not Mormon, but out of curiosity attended a couple of services. I allowed myself to be dragged there because the Bishop was going to be addressing preparedness. I sat there stunned as he begged the majority of an affluent rural Ward to at least put away a week or two of food and supplies - this in an area that has blinding snowstorm and impassable roads EVERY winter.

Also, the church is the most intrusive organization I've ever seen. They monitor everything and everyone, and are the best gossip network you could imagine. To get your temple recommend, you have to let your Bishop check your tax return to verify that you have tithed a full 10% of your gross income!

The adherents, who live under this legalistic microscope, are a tyrant's wet dream of obedience. It's no coincidence that FBI & CIA target Mormons for recruitment, and these agencies sure aren't seeking moral character these days. Ditto the reason for location of the new NSA data center and the giant IRS office in Ogden...

I was told repeatedly that the church believes that Mormons will be the saviors of the Constitution, and that Jesus will come back to rule in "Zion" which is somewhere in Jackson County Missouri. This messianic conviction that they will rescue America and sit at the right hand of Jesus is no doubt driving the Bundy's actions, at least in good part.

Their gullibility is further evidenced by their continued trust of Payne. All he had to do was say he'd join their church, and they'll follow him anywhere.

Besides leftists, Mormons are the most self-BS'ing group of people I've encountered. Beware!

Anonymous said...

Anon@10:32 PM: You are spot on. Have no illusions about these "God-fearing" people. Their own doctrines put them in lock-step with the FEDGOV. In addition to being ideal candidates for the FBI and the CIA, think government snitch. This "religion", which has its roots in Freemasonry, is bought and paid for by Washington. Never confide your plans or preps to them and never include them into your tribe. If you do, you do it at your own peril.
They will do whatever the President of The Quorum Of The Twelve tells them to do. If you do not believe my and my experiences, then read UNDER THE BANNER OF HEAVEN by Jon Krakauer. The book is well-researched by a respected author. It will make the hair on the back of your neck stand straight up.

Anonymous said...

anon 10:32 - in 48 years I've never been asked to prove my income or provide a tax receipt. That makes the rest of your 'first-hand breathless account' rather suspect to my cynical ear.

anon 9:55 - in happily agreeing with 10:32 it seems your statements directly contradict the substance of his message.

I suspect the trap both of you are falling into is seeing a very large group of people as being a homogeneous group that all are exactly the same. I must assure you that you are mistaken, it's a very large tent with a very diverse set of opinions, beliefs, motives and actions.