In one of my recent posts, I was dealing with personal issues, that quite honestly fit into the theme of this blog perfectly, but I still feel uncomfortable posting about these things.
Growing up LDS exposed me to many uniquely Mormon things that most of the world is unaware of. Both unique cultural experiences, and unique religious practices.
I feel like sharing these things are good therapy, and some times even good affirmation for people dealing with the same topics.
When I lived in Utah, many of these things that were very common and known by everyone, were completely foreign to people when I spoke about these things when I left Utah and traveled the USA. When I would speak about “Lamanites” or “Nephites”, or “Ancient White Native Americans”, people thought I was crazy. Just the mention of those words threw most people for a loop, and yet in Utah those words are very commonly used. But if you mention things like “Samaritans” or “Philistines” or “Lazarus”, people world round are well aware of what you are talking about. In Utah if you talk about things like “Baptisms for the dead“, “Stake President”, “Deseret”, “Garments”, you don’t get a second glance. But if you use that type of lingo outside of Utah, people are usually aware that you are “not from around here”.
But one thing that is sort of unspoken in Utah, and maybe not well known by name, but is commonly practiced and even encourage by LDS leadership, is the principle of “Lying for the Lord”. This is a hard concept to understand, unless you are LDS/Mormon. You don’t even really have to be an active member or a person in a position of any authority to “get it”.
This has been a long practiced notion in LDS history. This type of communication happens from the “apostate”, to the “Jack-Mormon”, to the “Active Member” and especially by those in “Leadership” position or in other words, people with a “calling”.
This started as early as 1830 with Joseph Smith, when Joseph Smith would try to convince people he had many pounds worth of golden plates, that had ancient writings on them.
It’s hard to describe this. But it is well known that Joseph Smith claimed to have golden plates, and that it was given to him by a ghost of a dead prophet that came from a tribe that traveled to the Americas from Israel many thousands of years ago named “Moroni” or “the “Angel Moroni“. But the conclusion by scientists and critics are that after analyzing all of Joseph’s records, and the records of the “witnesses” that allegedly “witnessed” the golden plates. Is that no one actually saw the plates. Most of the accounts reveal that a cloth was drawn over the plates, and that these witnesses were allowed to touch but not see the plates. This sort of relates back to Joseph Smith’s childhood when he was on treasure hunts with his father, and they would solicit farmers with their “glass looking” services. They would tell farmers that by means of using their “seerer stones” or “looking glass”, that they could discover buried treasure that was left behind by ancient native Americans. Their pursuits never yielded any treasure, and at age 14 Joseph Smith and his father were arrested and fined for scamming the people that they offered their services to. Joseph Smith Sr. and Jr. would take money in advance for their expenses, and in turn promise to uncover treasure with their unique occultist services. There were multiple arrests before Joseph Smith was even an adult.
But fast forward to 12 years after Joseph Smith Jr. started the LDS church, and took it upon himself to run for president. During this, Joseph Smith had many questions about the practice of polygamy, to which he responded as recorded in History of the Church 6:410–41, and a local newspaper in the city of Nauvoo ran by a Mormon who was at one time one of Joseph Smith’s second in command.
|“||A man asked me whether the commandment was given that a man may have seven wives …. I am innocent of all these charges, and you can bear witness of my innocence, for you know me yourselves …. What a thing it is for a man to be accused of committing adultery, and having seven wives, when I can only find one. I am the same man, and as innocent as I was fourteen years ago; and I can prove them all perjurers”.|
It was clearly known by most people relatively close to Joseph Smith that he had dozens of wives by this time, many of which would later report being sealed and having consummated the marriage with Joseph Smith. You can learn more here; http://wivesofjosephsmith.org/ Joseph Smith had wives ranging from the age of 12 to the age of 56 at this point, which was shortly before he was killed in Carthage jail. Yet, in respect to furthering the cause of the LDS church, Joseph Smith lied about his involvement with polygamy. As did several presidents of the LDS church and apostles that would follow. Denying poligamy to the public, and practicing it in private. Even the church president to officially end the practice of polygamy Wilford Woodruff would take more wives after releasing the 1890 “Polygamy manifesto“.
But now getting on to how this practice became very common among members. An unspoken practice that nearly all members are taught. The LDS church CES (Church Education System) has had their instructors recorded teaching how to do this. This is Robert L. Millet teaching this principle of “Lying for the Lord“. But a more comprehensive documentary on this can be found here, which has many LDS leaders knowingly lying for the Lord, with documented evidence, the most interesting case was with Mormon Apostle Jeffery R. Holland talking about the Book of Abraham, when he says one thing, and then when confronted with the truth immediately says something else. Ref: https://youtu.be/KhNOx1TjeLg?t=9m (skip to minute 9 to see this apostle tell bold face lies on cameras, and then get caught).
How this bleeds in to common Mormon culture, is what I have witnessed in my own life. Where family members talk about how they “think the Mormon church is full of crap”, how they think “Joseph Smith Jr. was a charlatan”, or like my gay family members who will say “The Mormon church is such bigots”. But then in social situations such as marriage or funerals will participate in Mormon rituals, and claim to be Mormons, and that they “believe Mormon doctrine” and such. Or will baptize their or bless their children in a Mormon ritual.
Recently I had a big blow out with my gay cousin, who in recent years I have been friendly with. But I think because of my personal opposition to the gay lifestyle has found reason to be combative with me. She tells me that I lie about my past, or that I lie about my beliefs. When I think in fact the opposite is true, and that it is her in many occasions living a lie.
In 2010 I was invited to her daughter’s wedding, and since her daughter’s father isn’t around, they had both asked me to walk her down the isle. I was surprised when I got there, that not only I would not be walking the daughter down the isle, but that this would be taking place at a Mormon church, and that my Mormon “priesthood holding” uncle who has never been a part of their lives, would be walking the daughter down the isle. What surprised me even more, is that the bishop who officiated the wedding proceedings was very hostile about how marriage is “between a man and a woman” and how there is only one kind of marriage and such, KNOWING that the brides parents were lesbians.
I felt a little hurt first being invited to be a part of the wedding in a special way, to learning that it was a bait and switch, but also that all of the complaining about the LDS church, and denouncing of the LDS church by the bride and her ‘mothers’, was thrown out the window in order to appease the family.
But it doesn’t stop there, siblings of mine who have always been against the church, who have always smoked, drank, smoked marijuana and have been vocal to friends about opposing the policies of the LDS church, will have weddings (some of them having many weddings each), and baptisms, and “blessings” in the Mormon church, in order to keep up appearances with family.
For those in my family who say I lie about my beliefs, I think it’s interesting that all of my beliefs are public on Youtube, and on my website, and can even be researched in the “internet archive” at www.archive.org.
My cousin who is gay, and other people in my family love to remind me of my past, when I confront them on their hypocrisy regarding the LDS church, about how when I was 13-15 hanging out with family members who were skinheads. They remind me that when I lived with my cousin and her skinhead boyfriend, that I claimed to be a “skinhead”, and pretend as if though I deny it. What is funny, is that despite we are family, I distanced myself from them at age 15, and moved out of my parents home, and traveled the USA. I founded an anti-racist skinhead ideology that I call S.P.E.A.R “Skins and Punks Every Where Against Racism“. Ive never spoke to them about this, and we’ve never really spent much time together, so there wasn’t much that they could really go on except for when I was 15 years old. But I made a video recently for them, explaining who I am, and who I have been since I was 17 years old, when I got my tattoos (two of them) that say “S.P.E.A.R”, and how I have wrote about my past in my biography that I put online in 1999, and has been viewed by 3 million+ people since 1999, where I spoke about my past hanging out with people who were racist. They say “[I] deny it, or conceal it”, but I have so much media that I have put on the internet over the past 16 years regarding this topic, that Im surprised they never came across it. Reference to the internet archive of my biography, that I did speak about this in detail.
Chapter 4 of my biography is very explicit on this. I also made videos as far back as 2008 talking about this, and denouncing racism @ http://youtube.com/utahpirateradio
What I learned, is that before they discovered these things about me, from my videos to my biography, that they would go out of their way to search out people I have worked with, and friends of my on Facebook, and would write them saying “this guy is a racist”. My friends often write me with a “ROFL”. Knowing that my wife and kids are Native American, and that many friends and girl friends from my past have been of all races and creeds. But my family seem to like to do whatever it takes. But claiming that I lie about it or deny it, is so hilarious it almost makes me choke from laughter every time I hear it. This period in my life was one of my greatest learning experiences.
However, their hypocrisy would be funny if it wasn’t so tragic. The LDS church is highly against their lifestyles, yet they go so far out of their way to kiss the LDS churches ass that they will build their lives and every important event in their lives around it.
So I will make this next point very clearly for them as well. Especially for my gay cousin. I am opposed on a personal level to the gay lifestyle. I am also opposed to laws that hurt or exclude gay people from society. I just personally think the gay lifestyle is extremely hazardous and counter productive. I have learned that there is about 4% of the US population that are gay (both lesbians and gay males). Yet more than 63% of HIV/AIDS infections are from gay male sex. With such a small population being carriers and spreaders of such a horrific disease, I resist the notion of the homosexual lifestyle both personally for myself, and as a parent who wants the best for my kids.
Some of my videos from 7-8 years ago include my opposition to Proposition 8, which was a LDS Church sponsored initiative in California to reject gay marriage by law.
I have never been dishonest about my stand on gay rights. Or racism. I wear my heart on my sleeve.
The same cousin that blasts me about my past 25 years ago, has also wrote me emails saying that she “dislikes Mexicans”.
But I guess different standards and expectations apply to her. Maybe because she is in an “oppressed group” herself, being gay.
But racism is racism. I have stood against racism for 23 years strongly, she apparently never got over it. She started this feud with me shortly after I made the video above in 2013 and sent it to her on Facebook. Our relationship is no more now. But I tried for the last two years to come to an understanding, but I won’t sacrifice my principles just to appease her, or anyone else.
My goal is to continue to develop lie detection software though. Because this “Lying for the Lord” thing is all over the LDS culture.
Lying in general is sort of a cultural thing in Utah, whether a person is LDS or not it seems.
I made this video to talk about my new project to develop such a software, to sort out lies from truth.
I wrote more about my new lie detection technology that I am developing now at this post:
These Mormon’s really researched their faith, and made some honest decisions based on the information that they found; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BuFdjLjDwPc