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Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

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Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Ivan on Wed Oct 12, 2011 12:51 am

Mark Twain described the Book of Mormon as "chloroform in print”. Could a Mormon, namely Mitt Romney, be elected President of the USA in 2012?

Mormons believe that their first prophet, Joseph Smith, discovered golden plates in upstate New York in the 1820s, and that he translated them with the help of magic stones, discovering them to contain an alternative Bible. They also believe that Jesus visited America after the crucifixion in order to take his message to the descendants of ancient Israelite tribes who had lived there for centuries, forgotten by history and unknown to modern archaeology. How has this strange offshoot of Christianity survived for nearly 200 years?

Nelson Jones offers us an explanation:-

“The religion's strength comes from its quintessentially American nature. It is almost the theological expression of America itself - as baseball is its sporting expression, or Coca Cola its liquid one. Its history, first of all, is the story of the frontier and of settlement. Just as the United States is a country of immigrants, many of whom came fleeing persecution in their own country, so the early Mormons were chased from town to ever remoter town until, under the leadership of Brigham Young, they established their own mini-America in Utah. In Salt Lake City, they recreated the ideals of the Pilgrim Fathers, establishing a new and godly community far from the corruption of the world. It was an achievement that called for all the great American virtues of self-reliance, ruggedness, family values, courage and fortitude.”

For the full article:-
http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/star-spangled-staggers/2011/10/american-religion-mormonism

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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Shirina on Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:11 am

Well, first of all ... all organized religion is comprised of cults. Methodists, evangelicals, Lutherans, Catholics, and Mormons are just as much cults as Jimmy Jones' congregation was. The size of membership does not necessarily determine whether something is a cult, and calling them "denominations" is a massive euphemism. The only real delineation between one cult and another is the degree of fanaticism.

As for whether a Mormon could ever be elected president, sure, it's possible. Before 2009, no one thought a black man could be elected president, and before 1961, no one thought a Catholic could be elected. However, I very much doubt a proclaimed atheist will ever be elected in this country.

And right now, Romney is about the only person the GOP has resembling a candidate that has a chance of winning the election ... and even that isn't saying a lot right now. I do think Romney's Mormonism will cost him some votes but probably not enough to hamstring his chances.

I also disagree with Nelson's explanation since he seems to have left out the zany beliefs like magic protective underwear and that God, Brigham Young, and Joseph Smith are all hanging out on the planet Kolob (even though modern Mormons are trying to distance themselves from that).

I'm also certain that building a harem filled with subservient wives appealed to a lot of young males.

Like the formation of any cult or new religion, it appealed to the disenfranchised, the disconnected, the social pariahs, and those living on the outer fringes of society. Often times, the tenants of the faith mean far less to the joiners than the sense of belonging one receives from being a part of it all. This is why cults professing even the most idiotic or stupid beliefs still manage to gain a following. Just look at Heaven's Gate.

Many American settlers, by virtue of being here, were disenfranchised and disconnected. That's why they came to America in the first place - to escape the persecution and exile of believing in something different than the mainstream.

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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Wed Oct 12, 2011 1:26 am

Ivan,

I'd like to know if you see and hear what I see and hear.

 
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Ivan on Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:46 am

"I also disagree with Nelson's explanation since he seems to have left out the zany beliefs like magic protective underwear and that God, Brigham Young, and Joseph Smith are all hanging out on the planet Kolob (even though modern Mormons are trying to distance themselves from that)."

Shirina. To be fair to Nelson Jones, he did say a lot more, but I only used a short extract of his article to avoid falling foul of any copyright laws. Here is another paragraph from it:-

Or one could mention the direct influence of Freemasonry on the rituals that Smith created for his temple; or the planet Kolob which plays a minor part in Mormon theology; or practices that seem strange to outsiders - baptism of the dead, sacred underwear, in former times (and still in some dissident groups today), polygamy. Atheist blogger Greta Christina described her visit to the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City earlier this year as "a rollercoaster ride of hilarity and horror”. The effect, she writes, "was to make me think, even more strongly than I had before, this religion is batshit crazy”.

http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/star-spangled-staggers/2011/10/american-religion-mormonism

Rock. What do I see in that video? Mainly hypocrisy – Romney’s father walked out of the 1964 Republican Convention because of perceived racism, yet was a member of a church which until 1978 did not allow full participation by black males (what about females?). It was also unnecessary, but significant, for Romney to single out black people for special mention, as he did at the end of that video clip. After all, he didn’t need to refer to Hispanics or Asians, or anyone else. If race isn’t an issue, why make reference to any group?
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Thu Oct 13, 2011 7:09 am

Ivan,
 
That's what I see and hear. Mitt Romney is doing more tap dancing than the Four Step Brothers.
 

 
 
1964 letter to Governor George Romney from Delbert L. Stapley, Mormon Apostle from October 5, 1950 to August 19, 1978, actual text (PDF file).
http://www.boston.com/news/daily/24/delbert_stapley.pdf
 
Commentary
http://www.mormoncurtain.com/topic_delbertlstapley.html
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by GreatNPowerfulOz on Sat Oct 15, 2011 12:31 am

I believe Mormonism to be of a "cultish" nature. It seems to fit the hallmarks of a cult quite well. I would lump it in with Scientology.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Farley on Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:06 pm

No doubt...a cult.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:36 pm

"Sometimes I can believe at least six impossible things before breakfast."
The Red Queen, Alice through the Looking Glass
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by jennym42 on Sun Oct 30, 2011 3:31 pm

I always assumed mormonism to be a cult, but as I view all religions fairly dimly perhaps thats just me.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Charlatan on Thu Dec 08, 2011 4:59 pm

Yes I would say that mormonism is a religion just like any other. They have a bible, and follow a god.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Shirina on Thu Dec 08, 2011 5:10 pm

What, exactly, is the difference between a "religion" and a "cult" other than the size of the congregation?
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Charlatan on Thu Dec 08, 2011 6:57 pm

That is a very good point shirina.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:11 pm

Shirina wrote:
What, exactly, is the difference between a "religion" and a "cult" other than the size of the congregation?
Size is irrelevant. There are several differences. The primary difference is intent.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Charlatan on Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:22 pm

Okay, well this cult has a bible and a god. They also probably have a leader and a set of 'rules.'

Please explain how this cult is different from a religion?
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by jackthelad on Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:39 pm

It's really the Church of the Latter Day Saints, a branch of protestants, a bit like a cult though.
I have been pondering on how they become to be called Mormons, then i had a sudden flash of inspiration, in there little sect, men were outnumbered by women by four to one. As you know, one wife could be tiring for a man, so the men prayed for more men, hence the name Mormon, it was the accent.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Charlatan on Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:49 pm

That is full of useful information, thanks jack.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Thu Dec 08, 2011 8:10 pm

Charlatan wrote:
Okay, well this cult has a bible...

The beast that ate children had a Bible. I have a Qur’an and a Book of Mormon; I am neither Muslim nor Mormon.

Joseph Smith created the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Google key words and read the extensive and well referenced Wiki article and see for yourselves what Joseph Smith was al about.

Mormons must have temple pass card to, enter the temple. Mormons call it a temple recommend, although I didn’t know that recommend was a noun. In order to obtain a temple pass card (or temple pass sheet of paper), Mormons must get two signatures from higher-ups, other Mormons who are p the ladder of the hierarchy.

One Mormon, when told he must tithe in the manner and amount dictated by the higher-ups in order to obtain his pass card, told the higher0ups that he had already given that amount in a manner chosen by him. When his daughter got married, he wasn’t allowed to enter the temple to participate in her wedding. She complained about that on a dis-satisfied Mormon web site, but held the wedding in the temple anyway rather than changing he location to a p[lace where she as the bride could decide who was allowed to attend.

Something about that temple pass card that smacks of mind and behavior control, a universal trait of cults. Also, Jesus the Christ neither created, nor mandated, nor approved of hierarchies in his name, so the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints isn’t.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Dec 08, 2011 10:20 pm

Glad we cleared that up.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Charlatan on Fri Dec 09, 2011 8:12 am

Uh... okay...
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Fri Dec 09, 2011 7:47 pm

Charlatan wrote:
Uh... okay...
No problem,mate.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Charlatan on Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:08 pm

Imagine we were all teachers in the same class room arguing over what is right? We could really confuse some people!
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:12 pm


No confusion about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It’s a cult.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:42 pm

Apart from Mormons, is anyone else affected by this type of discussion?
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sat Dec 10, 2011 1:44 am

oftenwrong wrote:
Apart from Mormons, is anyone else affected by this type of discussion?

Yes.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by blueturando on Sat Dec 10, 2011 2:00 am

All relgions are a cult and anyone with half a brain knows that...

Religions and 'Gods' change over time and history proves this, so it will keep on happening with new religions/cults taking over from the established ones we have today

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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sat Dec 10, 2011 2:28 am

blueturando wrote:
All relgions are a cult…

No, they are not.

blueturando wrote:
… anyone with half a brain knows that…

I’ve at least three quarters of a brain; I don’t “know that.”

blueturando wrote:
'Gods' change[s] over time…

Perhaps ‘God’ may change; God is unchanging.


Last edited by RockOnBrother on Sat Dec 10, 2011 4:26 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Shirina on Sat Dec 10, 2011 12:39 pm

Hello, Rock.

I'm not sure why you quoted yourself then quoted your quotes a second time, but I deleted your last two posts since it was resembling the phenomenon you get when looking into the reflection of two opposite mirrors. Since you had three identical posts without any other responses in between, I deleted the last two as being duplicates.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sat Dec 10, 2011 4:25 pm

Shirina,

The Quote and edit keys are side by side. That should have been two edits in the post prior to yours, which I have now done. My bad. Thank you for cleaning it up.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by Shirina on Sat Dec 10, 2011 6:25 pm

The Quote and edit keys are side by side. That should have been two edits in the post prior to yours, which I have now done. My bad. Thank you for cleaning it up.
LOL! I've almost done the same thing a few times. Plus I keep wanting to hit the edit button thinking it's the post reply button, then I can't find the latter because it's down off my screen.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by blueturando on Sat Dec 10, 2011 7:14 pm

Rock....I have no idea whether God...or a God/Gods exists and neither do you. You can believe there is one, but no one really knows....anyway....I thought the thread was about religions and cults?
For arguments sake lets just say there is a God (even though I doubt there is) Religions and versions of God/Gods change over time, because they are man made...and humans are very fickle. One minute it one religion and the next its something else. So God may not change, but man made religions do and that's why they are all Cults

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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sat Dec 10, 2011 7:38 pm

blueturando wrote:
Rock....I have no idea whether God...or a God/Gods exists…

I have more than an idea; I know that God is God; more correctly, I know that YHWH Elohim is YHWH Elohim.

blueturando wrote:
… and neither do you.

Yes I do. See above.

blueturando wrote:
… You can believe there is one, but no one really knows…

I know that there is One God, so I really know. There are a few other folks that also know, and some folks have known since circa 1400 BC (inexact), when Moses said, “Sch’ma, Y’srael, Adonai Eluheinu, Adonai echod, Hear O Israel, the Lord God, the Lord is one.”

blueturando wrote:
… I thought the thread was about religions and cults?

The thread is about one religion that, in my opinion, is definitely a cult.

blueturando wrote:
For arguments sake lets just say there is a God (even though I doubt there is) Religions and versions of God/Gods change over time, because they are man made…

God, YWHW Elohim, pre-existent existence, author, creator, and sovereign of all that is, was, and ever will be, is by definition not “man made.”

blueturando wrote:
… So God may not change, but man made religions do…

Of course “religions do”, as flim-flam artist (in my opinion) such as Joseph Smith figure out how to pimp God in the name of their own power, their own money, and plenty of females with whom to lie.

blueturando wrote:
… that's why they are all Cults

Nope.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by blueturando on Sat Dec 10, 2011 8:02 pm

Just wanted to ask...was this God around for the billions of years the Earth has been here prior to Moses having his little rant? Or do you believe like a certain other cult that the earth is only 13 thousand years old?

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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sat Dec 10, 2011 8:18 pm

blueturando wrote:
Just wanted to ask...was this God around for the billions of years the Earth has been here… [italics mine]

Considering that the God (“this” presuppose “others”) is the creator of all that is (right now), was (13 billion, 130 billion, 13 trillion years ago, whatever), and ever will be  (13 billion, 130 billion, 13 trillion years hence, whatever), yes.

blueturando wrote:
… prior to Moses having his little rant?

As Moses did not have a “little rant”, this portion of your question is unanswerable.

blueturando wrote:
… do you believe like a certain other cult that the earth is only 13 thousand years old?

As I don’t believe “like” any “certain other cult”, your question is unanswerable in its entirety.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by blueturando on Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:04 pm

Didnt think you would answer the question, which ironically answers it perfectly Smile

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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:11 pm

blueturando wrote:
Didnt think you would answer the question…

Is that why your questions are disingenuous and, in my opinion, intentionally insulting?

blueturando wrote:
…which ironically answers it perfectly

Erroneous.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by blueturando on Sat Dec 10, 2011 11:46 pm

Is any point of discussion you cant or wont answer just erroneous or intentionally insulting? I guess that's your get out clause

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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sun Dec 11, 2011 1:23 am

blueturando wrote:
Is any point of discussion you cant or wont answer just erroneous or intentionally insulting?

This is erroneous:

blueturando wrote:
…which ironically answers it perfectly

These are disingenuous and, in my opinion, intentionally insulting:

blueturando wrote:
… prior to Moses having his little rant?
blueturando wrote:
… do you believe like a certain other cult that the earth is only 13 thousand years old?

I would personally appreciate your return to the thread topic, “Is Mormonism a ‘cult’, or just the great American religion?”
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by dimsum on Sun Dec 18, 2011 2:54 am

I beleive many Org. religion seems cult-like. Being spiritual is much different I think than organized religion. Being a Morman means no more or less to me than being a Catholic does. Your choice. I have known many people who are very spiritual but are not members of any church.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by ROB on Sun Dec 18, 2011 6:23 am

dimsum wrote:
Being a Morman means no more or less to me than being a Catholic does. Your choice.

Wander around within any Roman Catholic cathedral and you will be welcomed by any priest you might encounter. Seek to attend any Roman Catholic worship or any other religious ceremony, weddings and infant baptisms, for instance, and you will be welcomed.

Seek entrance into any Mormon temple and you will be denied access by any Mormon official you might encounter. Seek to attend any Mormon temple worship or any other temple religious ceremony, weddings and infant baptisms, for instance, and you will be denied access.

Being a Mormon means something different than being a Roman Catholic to me.
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Re: Is Mormonism a "cult", or just the great American religion?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Dec 18, 2011 11:43 am

Why do Mormons always seem to carry smarter-looking Bibles than everyone else?
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