Friday, August 5, 2011

DEAR ANONYMOUS

You posted 3 comments on my blog today, and although I would like to respond directly to you, you've made that impossible since you posted them anonymously.  According to my Feedjit App, you live in Mesa, Arizona, but that doesn't give me enough information to locate you.  So I will post this open letter with the hopes that you will come back to my blog to "check in" and will find it.  And by the way, it seems to me that those who post anonymously are too cowardly to post using either their real name or at least a way for someone to contact them.  If a person is secure in their opinions, shouldn't they be willing and able to handle whatever response they may get?  I'm not hiding behind a pseudonym here, and I'm certainly not posting anonymously.  I'm very firm in my opinions about the lies and deception that are laced throughout Mormonism, and I'm ready to discuss them at any time.

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.
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?
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.

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.

10 comments:

Dan Stapleton said...

Saw your comment on The Others. Good response to anonymous. A couple of thoughts. Why did Joesph and others go through the suffering. The same reason all martyrs do. Why Be a Martyr: From the story of Appolinios – Either he will be true to himself now, in the moment of supreme crisis; or all will brand him as a coward and a traitor to philosophy. Tertillian said “the blood of martyrs was the seed of the church: the accounts of their deaths were among the bonds that held the churches together. (Rousseau) When the martyr entered the arena, he was able to look evil in the eye and proclaim his witness. The acoustics in the arena were of such that all would hear his message. A message against the government, a message of cosmic proportions, a message to those that could stop it, but chose not to. You are watching the death of the martyr, but he is watching you. Who wins? He loses his life to ascend to God, but wins the debate. So Joseph Smith had no choice he ether declared himself to be a fraud or die to perpetuate the fraud.
On the view of the Mormon heaven Joesph plagiarized the concept of the Celestial and terrestrial Kingdoms In 1784 Emanuel Swedenborg wrote a book about his visions of the afterlife. Swedenborg insisted: "There are three heavens," described as "entirely distinct from each other." He called the highest heaven "the Celestial Kingdom," and stated that the inhabitants of the three heavens corresponded to the "sun, moon and stars." ( from Michael Quinn).Keep up the goog work. Dan Stapleton

Stacie Ann Rose said...

Great blog post Diane! I have come to the opinion that Joseph never was a martyr, because to me a martyr is not armed, doesnt fire back into the crowd, and doesnt kill 2 people. It sounds more like a wild west shootout. Joseph, is you read enough about him comes across more and more as arrogant and self rightous. There is so much History that the majority of mormons dont even know which I find the sadest part of it all. I only started researching when my husband started taking the discussions. I sat through them with him through 6 sets of the discussions and realized they left more questions than answers. All they kept telling my husband was to pray. Prayer is good, but you have to have knowledge of your own religon to back it up and the missionairies dont. Keep up the great blogging Diane! :)

Jean said...

Great blog Diane; I think you answered the lady's questions very well. You have done a very good job of researching the history which all people reading this have access to but many will prefer the comfortable lie. I didn't always 'feel' like it was a lie when I was a member, but there were some things that I just couldn't come to grips with, but I had been taught that I didn't need to come to grips with it so I didn't.

I allowed myself the luxury of not knowing any other truth than the one I was told was true. I didn't seek to find out anything other than what I had been taught. Your anonymous is likely a pretender without malice; she cannot believe otherwise. So very sad.

Becky said...

Incredible blog post!

And anonymous, if you are so damned proud about your Church and your relationship to it, why are you anonymous? What are you afraid of?

Loren said...

Preach on Dianne!

Dan Stapleton said...

I like Stacie’s comment “Joseph never was a martyr, because to me a martyr is not armed, doesn’t fire back into the crowd, and doesn’t kill 2 people.’’ There are conflicting stories whether or not any of the assailants died. Leans to the side that 3 or 4 were injured but did not die. To be a martyr one simply has to be claimed as one by a group whether they died fighting , as Simon of Perea, or as a victim as Joan of Arc, does not matter.

Anonymous said...

I love the passion you have for something you believe (or don't believe) in. However, I'm saddened by the easiness you've allowed Satan in turning you away. People of the church aren't perfect. Did Joesph Smith make mistakes? Of course. But this gospel is a perfect one. It sounds like you only have things to say against what some of the teachers have taught you or the example of other members. We've never claimed to have perfect people.
Study it out on your own. It sounds like you do that. But here is the thing...you can't just study the anti. You have to study the pro too. Reading the scriptures and praying with a open mind and heart. NOT judging by the people who wrote it. I doubt you ever examined the lives of the people who wrote the anti side. Don't believe or disbelieve based on that.
I hope you have happiness in your life. I know that the church IS true and I'm so sorry you don't. I'll keep you in my prayers and know that God is mindful of you.

-Nicole

Diane Tingen said...

Another anonymous post. But at least this time, the person left a name (Nicole) although no way to contact her. But I will address this comment to her in the hopes that she will come back here.

Nicole, I'm not sure what makes you think that I have honed in only on the "anti" side (as she puts it) and have not studied the "pro" side. I was a member of the Mormon Church for 50 years - a TBM. And believe me, I believed with all my heart and soul. Naturally, I had some issues, but I stuffed them down just like a good Mormon, and just kept on believing. I know I've told this story many times on this blog (and in my book which is posted on this blog), but I did not begin to seriously doubt Mormonism until I was preparing to go on a Mormon Church History Tour in the Summer of 2001. Prior to going on that trip, I decided to do some reading and research so I would know more when we visited the key places. And that was the beginning of the end of me as I began to discover the truth underneath it all. Believe me, Nicole, I did not turn away from Mormonism with the "easiness" you have stated; it was not "easy" to abandon my Mormon roots after devoting my life to it for 52 years. But after doing my research, and faced with the fact that it is built on a stack of lies, I had no other choice. I could not reconcile staying in a religion that plays so fast and loose with the truth and works to dupe people.

Nicole, you also said "It sounds like you only have things to say against what some of the teachers have taught you or the example of other members." If that is what you think, then she haven't read very much of my blog because my opinion of the Mormon Church is completely based on my own research and not on the people at all. I do not dislike Mormons - I know a lot of very good people who are Mormons, including many of my own family members. It is Mormonism that I detest and speak out against.

In your comment, you talked about the "anti side" several times. In reality, what you term as "anti" is actually the evidence against the Mormon Church being true. Terming everything negative against the Mormon Church as Anti-Mormon Propaganda is simply the church's way of keeping its members from investigating the real truth. Putting on blinders and deciding that anything negative is Anti is what they want you do to. If you would do some actual reading and research away from the "authorized areas," you would probably discover the truth as well. I hope you do that, because living your life in a religion that is built on a mountain of lies is a shocker when you reach the age of 50. Of course, it's very disconcerting at any age, but if you can spare yourself the pain of discovering the truth when half of your life is already gone, I would hope you do that. Regardless of what you do, though, I thank you for coming to my blog - I hope I've planted a seed of doubt that will grow and help you to do some actual research of your own and arrive at your own intelligent conclusions.

Lari said...

Nicole,

I'll keep you in my prayers to the flying spaghetti monster that one day you'll wake up and realize that joseph liked to have sex with little girls, just like warren jeffs.

In fact, the religion of FLDS is more accurate to how Brigham Young practiced it than the "mainstream" church today.

Why? Because the church is a corporation (look it up), and it wants to make money.

Diane Tingen said...

Yes, Lari, you're right. IMO, Warren Jeffs is practically Joseph Smith Reincarnated... both men are/were seriously twisted. When Joseph Smith was killed, he had 33 wives. I'm sure that if he hadn't been killed, he would have just kept on going would have ended up with even more than Brigham Young (who had 55) or Warren Jeffs (at his 78). It's amazing what some people can do (and think) based on "religion."