The first comment you posted was this: "Mormonism is true. I am a Mormon. No, I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I know who I am and I won't forget it, not now, not ever. You may have forgotten who you are and what your divine destiny is, but trying to convince others that it's not true isn't right. How can you do this to others? How can you make these awful claims of the truthfulness of the gospel? How can you leave it when the Spirit can be felt so strongly at times? How can you do this to yourself?" By Anonymous on Mormonism Seuss-ified at 1:21 PM
You say that although you know who you are and won't forget it, not now, not ever, that I may have forgotten who I am and what my divine destiny is. You go on to say that trying to convice others that it's not true isn't right, and ask how I can do this to others, even going on to ask how I can make these awful claims of the truthfulness of the gospel... how can I do this to myself? To answer your questions, how can I NOT do this? When I discovered the lies and deception laced throughout Mormonism, I was flabbergasted. I was born and raised in the Mormon Church, and I never expected to discover that the religion on which I had based my life was actually a fraudulent scam. But that's exactly what it is, and if you would do some independent research instead of relying on what the Mormon Church tells you to believe, you might discover the truth as well. If you want to read the entire background on my journey away from Mormonism, you can read my book which is posted on this blog.
The second comment you posted was this: "You must not know what Mormon heaven is if you'd rather choose the other way. And you must not understand what the other way holds." By Anonymous on Heaven... or Hell??? at 1:24 PM
Yes, I know what "Mormon Heaven" is claimed to be. The Celestial Kingdom. A fantasy place made up by Joseph Smith, along with two "lower" kingdoms called the Terrestrial Kingdom and the Telestial Kingdom. He made up a lot of stuff, and simply because there were people who bought it all doesn't mean it's true. As the saying goes:
And as far as what "the other way" holds (i.e. Hell), I'll take my chances. After all, no living person really knows what the Afterlife holds. They can profess a religious belief, but no one knows what is true until it's too late to tell others.
Your third comment is the most interesting by far... and definitely the most rambling: "Why would Joseph Smith create such a lie and still continue on with it? If it wasn't true, why did he allow himself to be tarred and feathered? If it was a made-up story, why would he choose to preach it and show such strength even though he was killed in the end? If it was a lie, why would he allow his friends and family and HIMSELF to be tortured, beaten, spit upon, and torn up in such an awful way? Why didn't he, if it wasn't true, just drop the whole idea in the end? Make people like him like the rest of the world would have done? And if it's a lie, why did so many people join? Why not just his closest friends and families? Why millions? Why? Because: it IS true. Quite often when people have something great to share, it isn't believed. The world says it is so amazing that it can't be true and the people all believe the world. Except for the ones who really try, who really pray; why would the early members, including Joseph Smith, have kept going had it been a lie? It makes no sense; if you have the chance to win twenty million dollars but people say it's not real, it's fake, but it really is, are you going to give up, knowing that you could have gotten that twenty million dollars, or that celestial salvation, in the end? Would you give up your chance on twenty million just because people discourage you? Or would you work at it and keep going until you HAVE twenty million? Think on that. Because it is true. And the reason people keep going through all the trials and tribulations brought upon them by the world is because they have found something great. It's because they've found something amazing, astounding, something worth sharing. Once you got your twenty million, wouldn't you share the chance with your family members, friends? Wouldn't you want them to be just as happy as you are? But the reward of celestial salvation is MUCH more than twenty million; it's more than anyone could even comprehend on their own. The things that He has in store for us are amazing, are truly astounding, are way greater than any trials or tribulations could ever overcome. Why shouldn't we share it with people? Why shouldn't we want our family members and friends, everyone, be as happy as we are? That's why we continue on. That's why we don't stop. That's why we don't and why we will never give up. That's the reason we are so happy. Because it is true and we know it. We know who we are. We know who we can become. We know what's in store and what we can gain. We know it. We know who we are. I know who I am. And I hope you do too; because if you decide to continue like this, you won't get your twenty million. Why would anyone give up that chance?" By Anonymous on Called to Dupe Them - LDS Hymn Parody at 1:35 PM
When someone goes on and on to the point of rambling, it is usually a sign that a nerve has been hit. Perhaps that is the case with your three comments, particularly since they were posted this afternoon in the course of 14 minutes. To comment on your first list of questions from this third comment, I'll break it down.
1. Why would Joseph Smith create such a lie and still continue on with it? Plain and simple, it is my opinion that Joseph Smith created Mormonism to gain power over people and to get their money. He became a rich and powerful man because of Mormonism. And as far as I am concerned, that was his motivation. Plus he pretty much got to say whatever he wanted, and people hung on his every word. Plus he creating polygamy, marrying 10 teenage girls (one as young as 14), and 11 women who were already married to living husbands. Yes, I do believe the his sexual appetite and desire to bed numerous women was the motivation behind his invention of polygamy and polyandry. The evidence is there. Just look at it.
2. If it wasn't true, why did he allow himself to be tarred and feathered? This question is actually pretty funny. If a group of people were going to tar and feather someone, the act doesn't occur because the victim has "allowed" it to happen. They are captured - and then tarred and feathered. What you need to ask yourself is WHY was Joseph Smith tarred and feathered. Research that question and the name Nancy Miranda Johnson will come up. Here's a link that gives some interesting information about this incident. And before you pass this information off as "anti-Mormon propaganda," please remember that these are historical facts.
3. If it was a made-up story, why would he choose to preach it and show such strength even though he was killed in the end? Well, I've already stated my opinion on why Joseph Smith chose to preach Mormonism. As far as showing strength and being killed in the end, he was not killed because of "religious persecution" as touted by the Mormon Church (and as I was told growing up). He was arrested and placed in Carthage Jail because he ordered the destruction of the Nauvoo Expositor printing press (and the burning of the building in which it was housed) after a story was published exposing the truth behind Joseph Smith's practice of polygamy and polyandry. And the mob that attacked him while he was in Carthage Jail did so because of Joseph Smith's practice of polygamy/polyandry and what was exposed in the article published in the Nauvoo Expositor (and by the way, did you know that he had a gun with him during the shoot-out and shot it? That was news to me, too). The fact that he was in jail for this act did not make him a religious martyr upon his death but rather a criminal. It really irritates me that I was taught otherwise, and sang hymns like "Praise to the Man." It wasn't until I did my own independent research that I began to discover the truth behind it all. I just wish I had done my research much earlier in my life so I wouldn't have spent 52 years in a religion that plays so fast and loose with the truth - and was obviously a hoax from the get-go.
4. If it was a lie, why would he allow his friends and family and HIMSELF to be tortured, beaten, spit upon, and torn up in such an awful way? Why didn't he, if it wasn't true, just drop the whole idea in the end? Those are good questions and ones that in most likelihood have several answers. Yes, the Mormons were persecuted for their beliefs. But Joseph Smith was the one who had the most to lose if he were to turn away from it. In my opinion, he craved the power that he gained by being the founder of Mormonism. From what I have read, he was very charasmatic and was able to get people to follow him. But in the process of establishing Mormonism, he told a lot of lies and kept digging his hole deeper and deeper. How could he suddenly say it wasn't true? How could he turn away from it when he had created such a money machine? No, instead of turning away from it, he just kept moving and moving and moving... from New York... to Ohio... to Missouri... to Illinois.... hoping that people would leave him and his followers alone. But in the end, he couldn't just leave well enough alone and began a campaign to run for President of the United States. Such arrogance. And that was probably the final nail in his coffin. Of course, after his death, Brigham Young took over and moved the Mormons to Utah where he built an incredible empire and made himself a very rich man. And so the lies were perpetuated... and more men became rich and powerful on the coat tails of the "Saints."
5. And if it's a lie, why did so many people join? Why not just his closest friends and families? Why millions? Why did so many people join? Well, the answer is obvious. They were told lies that they bought - and the Mormon community was so closed off from the rest of civilization that they became trapped in the lifestyle. Back in the beginnings of the church, they didn't have the internet (or Google) to lead them to the truth. Lies weren't so easily discovered until the advent of the internet, but now they are easily uncovered. You really should do some research. Just Google it. Like this paraphase of a scripture used by the Mormon Church says, "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of Google, and the truth will be made known unto you." Of course, the lies and deception continue today, and people who join the Mormon Church today are not told the truth behind Mormonism. It isn't until they begin to do their own research that they discover that the religion they have joined is a fraud. Very sad state of affairs.
As far as the statistics broadcasted by the Mormon Church today, it claims 14 Million members. Worldwide. And what is the total world population today? 7 Billion. At 14 Million, that is .2% of the world's population. That's not even 1%. Not even 1/2 of 1%. After all, 1 Billion is 1,000 million. But the fact is that number is highly inflated since it includes inactive members, excommunicated members, and deceased members (no, they don't take those names out of their numbers - look it up). So let's talk active members. Perhaps 4 Million. And at the real number of 4 million members, that is .06% of 7 Billion. Barely over 1/2 of 1% of the entire world's population. So what does the Mormon Church really have to brag about in saying it has 14 Million members? Not very much when you compare that number to the world's population. Yes, I know - that's why the Mormon Church has baptism for the dead. For those who never had the opportunity to hear the gospel. Just another one of Joseph Smith's inventions.
You use the analogy of the 20 Million dollars. Well, my blog contains another analogy. This is a quote by Christopher Miller.
In my ExMormon state, I prefer to try to guide people away from this bogus religion rather than just sit by quietly and watch them continue to be poisoned. Seems like the humane thing to do.Some of you are probably thinking, "Why don't you just leave them (the Mormons) alone?" So I ask you, if you saw a thirsty man drinking water from a well you knew to be poisoned, would you let him continue to drink or would you guide him to a safe well?
And in closing, Dear Anonymous, you can keep the 20 Million dollars. Particularly if Joseph Smith has anything to do with handing it out. Because in actuality, it will probably be illegal tender left over from his Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company scheme.