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(International Business Times)   The head of the Mormon church is to appear before court on charges of fraud for basically making people believe in religion   (ibtimes.co.uk) divider line 151
    More: Interesting, Mormon Church, City of Westminster Magistrates' Court, AUB, Israelites, Book of Mormon  
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9490 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Feb 2014 at 9:54 AM (31 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-02-05 11:07:08 AM

TheManMythLegend: Interesting,  considering 20% of the House of Lords have to be Bishops in the Church of England,  and the Head of State is also the head of the Church.


Since the CofE isn't Mormon, it makes total sense.
 
2014-02-05 11:07:22 AM

hasty ambush: CleanAndPure: Kozaru

All religions do that. Xianity is all about convenience and picking the parts you want to believe in.

You mean like politics?

[sanderspoli323.files.wordpress.com image 427x320]


[lh3.ggpht.com image 425x250]


Some people get caught up in things while attending rallies. It's true. However, I'm pretty sure that nobody really expects much of politicians. Even if those politicians have excellent marketing campaigns. With religion, people really expect shiat. Nobody is going to tithe 10% of their income for a farking lifetime if they don't actually think the whole heaven/hell/planet/whatever thing is real.

Churches that withhold their teachings until members get to certain levels (usually of contribution $$s) are nothing but scams, though. I'm not sure at which level of indoctrination that Mormons start talking details about the whole "get a planet" thing is, but certainly Scientology qualifies as a scam.
 
2014-02-05 11:07:59 AM

angryjd: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.


When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.


When the government demands protection money we call it taxes.


When you don't pay and the cops show up to your house with a SWAT team, kill your dogs, and turn your house inside out, some people call it "being civilized".
 
2014-02-05 11:10:02 AM

HeadLever: CheatCommando: You mean the ones that routinely deny women critical care so that they can stay right with their god?

Not aware of them denying trauma or ER care to any women here.  Source please.  Pretty sure that treating women in critical condition is consistent with their mission statement.

If you are talking about abortion (in which the 'critical' part is pretty laughable), there are plenty of places where one can get this outside of these hospitals.


Yeah, they've never denied an abortion to a woman and let her die in agony to appease their zombie god.
 
2014-02-05 11:10:23 AM

dr_blasto: What was the deal with that Irish hospital that let their patient die because abortion was no-no for them?


Didn't hear about that one.  If a patient is in a critical condition and is in need of care, you provide it to the best of your ability.
 
2014-02-05 11:12:06 AM

Kozaru: rnatalie: And I Believe; that in 1978 God changed his mind about black people!

There seems to be a recent campaign by the Mormon church where they are addressing these "issues".  Basically they are now saying that Brigham Young was a racist dick (because everyone was a racist dick back then) and that the teachings on blacks were his personal views and not those of God or the church.

It's really convenient when you can, after the fact, pick and choose from the countless statements your prophets made  were their personal opinion and which ones where they were God's Personal Mouthpiece.  Joseph Smith tells people that Quakers live on the moon?  He was speaking as a man.  No coffee?  That's from God.  Brigham Young says that the punishment for interracial relationships is death on the spot?  His "opinion".  Every man should have a handful of wives?  God's idea (but for a limited time only).


The idea that Brigham Young was folly to the racism of his times, despite being a prophet with the literal ability to speak to God face to face, doesn't help the Mormon position. Were Young actually connected with the Divine perhaps he would have risen above  the moral failings of the 19th century regarding race. For that matter, couldn't the same deity that commanded him to marry over three dozen women have also told him to quit being a racist ass?
 
2014-02-05 11:16:52 AM

CheatCommando: Yeah, they've never denied an abortion to a woman and let her die in agony to appease their zombie god.


You will notice that there is an Inquest on this and hopefully, they will update their policy to make sure that this never happens again.  Like I said hospital care needs to address critical conditions to the best of their ability.  If that requires an abortion to save the mother, that is a pretty straightforward decision.  This one case does not mean that this is standard practice, either.
 
2014-02-05 11:19:23 AM

HeadLever: CheatCommando: Yeah, they've never denied an abortion to a woman and let her die in agony to appease their zombie god.

You will notice that there is an Inquest on this and hopefully, they will update their policy to make sure that this never happens again.  Like I said hospital care needs to address critical conditions to the best of their ability.  If that requires an abortion to save the mother, that is a pretty straightforward decision.  This one case does not mean that this is standard practice, either.


True. Catholic hospitals often perform abortions when the mother's life is in jeopardy. It's official policy, if I'm not mistaken.
 
2014-02-05 11:19:54 AM

Diogenes: bigdanc: Diogenes: van1ty: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.

When the government demands taxes to pay for police services, and arrests you if you don't pay them, it's called life.

Difference being the police protect you from threats they don't deliberately create.

Thats a stretch because youre asserting the church knows its beliefs on spirituality to be false

You can believe what you want to or feel you must believe.

I'm not a believer.  So requiring a tithe to me seems like a protection racket.  And LDS is particularly egregious because they really demand it.

You can't even step foot in the local LDS temple until you release a financial statement to the church.


You can't set foot in an NFL stadium unless you've bought a ticket......
 
2014-02-05 11:22:19 AM
I imagine whoever decided that the lawsuit could go forward had to belong to a rival religion, otherwise they'd read the list of charges, say "Yep, sounds like typical religious bullshiat, can't legislate against that" and throw it out.
 
2014-02-05 11:25:00 AM

machodonkeywrestler: Diogenes: bigdanc: Diogenes: van1ty: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.

When the government demands taxes to pay for police services, and arrests you if you don't pay them, it's called life.

Difference being the police protect you from threats they don't deliberately create.

Thats a stretch because youre asserting the church knows its beliefs on spirituality to be false

You can believe what you want to or feel you must believe.

I'm not a believer.  So requiring a tithe to me seems like a protection racket.  And LDS is particularly egregious because they really demand it.

You can't even step foot in the local LDS temple until you release a financial statement to the church.

You can't set foot in an NFL stadium unless you've bought a ticket......


Team members usually don't need to purchase tickets.
 
2014-02-05 11:26:03 AM
Diogenes:Difference being the police protect you from threats they don't deliberately create.

Now who's being naive, Kay.
 
2014-02-05 11:26:46 AM

Kozaru: It's just that, compared to the Mormon upstarts, the others have a 2000-year old veneer of respectability covering their blatant flaws.


And on top of that, the creation of Mormonism is recent enough that it's documented.  Newspapers, interviews, even film and sound recordings of people who were alive at the time.
 
2014-02-05 11:28:11 AM

DeArmondVI: Kozaru: rnatalie: And I Believe; that in 1978 God changed his mind about black people!

There seems to be a recent campaign by the Mormon church where they are addressing these "issues".  Basically they are now saying that Brigham Young was a racist dick (because everyone was a racist dick back then) and that the teachings on blacks were his personal views and not those of God or the church.

It's really convenient when you can, after the fact, pick and choose from the countless statements your prophets made  were their personal opinion and which ones where they were God's Personal Mouthpiece.  Joseph Smith tells people that Quakers live on the moon?  He was speaking as a man.  No coffee?  That's from God.  Brigham Young says that the punishment for interracial relationships is death on the spot?  His "opinion".  Every man should have a handful of wives?  God's idea (but for a limited time only).

The idea that Brigham Young was folly to the racism of his times, despite being a prophet with the literal ability to speak to God face to face, doesn't help the Mormon position. Were Young actually connected with the Divine perhaps he would have risen above  the moral failings of the 19th century regarding race. For that matter, couldn't the same deity that commanded him to marry over three dozen women have also told him to quit being a racist ass?


My point exactly. I guess when you are the God Whisperer you only get some of the divine plan.
 
2014-02-05 11:29:09 AM
First thing that I thought of when I saw him.

d.ibtimes.co.uk

s3.vidimg.popscreen.com
 
2014-02-05 11:29:46 AM

Talondel: Diogenes:Difference being the police protect you from threats they don't deliberately create.

Now who's being naive, Kay.


*rolls eyes*

You guys fail at analogies.  But to your specific "point," you're conflating bad cops with institutional policy, practice and philosophy.
 
2014-02-05 11:32:22 AM
True Believing Mormons, or TBM's for short, are some of the most off-puttingly whitest people I've ever encountered. As in, "Stepped out of a 50s sitcom" white. They're also hugely passive-aggressive and repressed.

/Served with many in the Air Force.
 
2014-02-05 11:32:45 AM

machodonkeywrestler: Diogenes: bigdanc: Diogenes: van1ty: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.

When the government demands taxes to pay for police services, and arrests you if you don't pay them, it's called life.

Difference being the police protect you from threats they don't deliberately create.

Thats a stretch because youre asserting the church knows its beliefs on spirituality to be false

You can believe what you want to or feel you must believe.

I'm not a believer.  So requiring a tithe to me seems like a protection racket.  And LDS is particularly egregious because they really demand it.

You can't even step foot in the local LDS temple until you release a financial statement to the church.

You can't set foot in an NFL stadium unless you've bought a ticket......


The NFL never threatened anyone with eternal damnation if they didn't show up to the games with a ticket in their hand.
 
2014-02-05 11:33:45 AM
So is the head of the Mormon church actually going to show up in the UK on fraud charges? My guess is no.
 
2014-02-05 11:35:34 AM
It's pretty simple.

MY religion is the One True Word of God®.

YOUR religion is a pack of lies.
 
2014-02-05 11:37:27 AM

Kozaru: You can't even step foot in the local LDS temple until you release a financial statement to the church.

You can't set foot in an NFL stadium unless you've bought a ticket......


The NFL never threatened anyone with eternal damnation if they didn't show up to the games with a ticket in their hand.


The argument, and it's an interesting one theologically, is that you don't  have to go get temple-endowed and temple-sealed and all that.  If you die without doing that, someone will inevitably do it for you by proxy after you're dead and you can accept it then.

Which turns Pascal's wager on its head really.  "You mean, I can save my money, not go do stupid handshake crap, wear comfortable underwear, drink, and if you're right you've still got me covered?  Great! Have fun endowing me when I'm dead".
 
2014-02-05 11:42:47 AM

TheSubjunctive: Which turns Pascal's wager on its head really.


Always loved that.  Definitely something ironic about using an odds-based argument.

But I love his programming language.
 
2014-02-05 11:46:04 AM

Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.


You left out unions for some reason...
 
2014-02-05 11:47:59 AM
blog.nola.com
Fascinating.
 
2014-02-05 11:49:13 AM

Diogenes: machodonkeywrestler: Diogenes: bigdanc: Diogenes: van1ty: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.

When the government demands taxes to pay for police services, and arrests you if you don't pay them, it's called life.

Difference being the police protect you from threats they don't deliberately create.

Thats a stretch because youre asserting the church knows its beliefs on spirituality to be false

You can believe what you want to or feel you must believe.

I'm not a believer.  So requiring a tithe to me seems like a protection racket.  And LDS is particularly egregious because they really demand it.

You can't even step foot in the local LDS temple until you release a financial statement to the church.

You can't set foot in an NFL stadium unless you've bought a ticket......

Team members usually don't need to purchase tickets.


Neither do the priests. Just saying it's not nearly as simplistic as you made it seem. Both are non profit religious entities.
 
2014-02-05 11:49:43 AM

Diogenes: *rolls eyes*

You guys fail at analogies.  But to your specific "point," you're conflating bad cops with institutional policy, practice and philosophy


The original comment you responded to so naively was about government and taxes being used to hire police.  You claimed that in that scenario at least the money isn't being used to solve problems they themselves create.  But of course they do actually do that.  They create criminals by criminalizing victimless behavior and then tell you that they need your money to stop that crime and they take it from you under penalty of imprisonment.  They're using your tax dollars to solve a problem that they've created.

Not all tax dollars are spend solving problems that the government created.  But then not all the money you give to the church is either.  At least the money being given to the church is given voluntarily and people have the option to opt out of it.  Try to opt out of paying your local goon squad police force and see what happens.

If you think your government isn't using your tax dollars to hire police (or soldiers, or bureaucrats) to fix problems that the government created, you're naive.
 
2014-02-05 11:52:13 AM

Kozaru: machodonkeywrestler: Diogenes: bigdanc: Diogenes: van1ty: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.

When the government demands taxes to pay for police services, and arrests you if you don't pay them, it's called life.

Difference being the police protect you from threats they don't deliberately create.

Thats a stretch because youre asserting the church knows its beliefs on spirituality to be false

You can believe what you want to or feel you must believe.

I'm not a believer.  So requiring a tithe to me seems like a protection racket.  And LDS is particularly egregious because they really demand it.

You can't even step foot in the local LDS temple until you release a financial statement to the church.

You can't set foot in an NFL stadium unless you've bought a ticket......

The NFL never threatened anyone with eternal damnation if they didn't show up to the games with a ticket in their hand.


You sure about that??
 
2014-02-05 11:53:00 AM

TheSubjunctive: The LDS money stream is pretty astounding.  No other church gets anything close to 10% reliably. Virtually none of that is spent locally.  A common US ward will be bringing in maybe $500k a year in tithes, all of which they send to SLC. The ward will get maybe $20k of that sent back (to pay the electric bill and feed the copier). The bishop (= minister in other churches) isn't paid. They don't even usually pay a janitor (people are volunteered).  The larger church did pay for building the meetinghouse.

The temples aren't that expensive. The missionaries aren't that expensive either (they're supposed to pay for their own flights and food).  Their charity work is average at best (you're more likely to run into a Mennonite relief group in a disaster than a Mormon, at 1/100th the budget).

But, Desert Industries owns hundreds of for-profit shopping centers and millions of acres of for-profit farm/ranchland, so that's nice.


RottNDude: I grew up in a Mormon family and escaped as soon as I was old enough to leave the house. I still talk to some of my family though.
According to my sister in law the church is apparently going through some of the same political pressure regarding gay couples and the eventual legalization of gay marriage throughout the US and rest of the world. Did you know you can be a gay member of the church as long as you remain celibate? Oh and give your required 10 percent tithe. I did the biggest quizzical dog face when I heard that.

The Mormon church is a business. A successful one at that. If political and societal pressure threaten that revenue stream, they will find it convenient to say The Lord revealed that such-and-such is now hunky-dory.

Hell, maybe I should sue the church too for all of the therapy I had to go through to undo the brainwashing. It's the biggest crock of shiat religion on the face of the Earth.


TRUTH .... ALL OF IT...EVERY SINGLE WORD OF THIS!!

/Married to a Mormon for 22 years
//Not Mormon
 
2014-02-05 11:54:28 AM

MyRandomName: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.

You left out unions for some reason...


Get the fark off fark if you're just going to whine. It's getting tiring.
 
2014-02-05 12:04:58 PM

machodonkeywrestler: Get the fark off fark if you're just going to whine. It's getting tiring


Good thing Fark.com is run according to your personal tastes and political preferences. I'm sure the mods will have him cleaned up in no time.
 
2014-02-05 12:19:48 PM

wxboy: The UK, which has an official Christian church, is hearing a case in which someone is complaining that religion is untrue?

as well as a claim that all humans alive today are descended from "just two people (Adam and Eve) who lived approximately 6,000 years ago".

If a court finds that this claim is untrue, how would that affect other Abrahamic religious organizations that have presence in the UK?


Are their any Mormon Archaeologists? Or Biological Evolutionary Scientists? Or any type of Scientist?
 
2014-02-05 12:23:22 PM

Egoy3k: Pokey.Clyde: Oh look. Another religion bashing thread on Fark. How original.

It's nice to take a break from bashing furries, transgender kids, the GOP, the DNC, Canada, America, Russia, Japanese culture, gamers, Justin Beiber, television, non television watchers, gays, straights, McDonalds, Olive Garden, hipsters, rednecks, white people, black people, gun owners, gun grabbers, hunters, PETA, nuclear power, coal power, natural gas, wind turbines, anti-vaxxers, etc etc etc and come back to the classics every so often.


4.bp.blogspot.com

They all adore him. They think he's a righteous dude.
 
2014-02-05 12:28:08 PM

dpzum1: Are their any Mormon Archaeologists?


There is a hill in New York where they believe that Joseph Smith found the Golden Plates that he translated. The Mormon church owns it and puts on pageants reenacting the story found in the Book of Mormon about the ancient Indians/Israelites and also about the plates. They say they have conducted extensive archaeological studies there and have lots of proof to back up their claims, but no non-Mormon is allowed to dig there.
 
2014-02-05 12:29:56 PM
My issue with the Latter Day Saints can be summed up simply by the name of their principle prophet, later resurrected to hand over golden tablets that only Joseph Smith ever "read" and then "returned" the plates to said angel: Moroni.

Moron is the name of said angel and prophet.

Why, yes, I DO think of the entirety of the Mormon organization as a vast con job, as much as I think of Scientology as a vast con job. Or the f*cking Nichiren--though, at the Nichiren have some loose basis with a faith that has some history, as opposed to being created whole cloth for the express purpose of getting sweet, sweet, sweet valuta from rubes. And keeping daughters close to home and compliant, so they got that going for them.

Don't get me wrong: folks can use the lessons from the Book of Mormon to live productive, even useful and decent lives, and I hope that their belief gives them comfort, but it doesn't distract me from the vast con job that is the Church of Latter Day Saints. As a younger man, I hung out with enough carnies and grifters to have an appreciation for a good con, and can even admire a good con for the art, especially when applied to those who desperately cry out to be rooked and swindled with wild abandon, and it keeps a lot of folks off the streets I suppose, but the LDS does a lot of damage not just to their followers, but to the communities around them, and what the Mormons have done in Utah, I can easily see Scientologists working their way towards in California if given the chance and another hundred years to settle in. Both are brilliant scams, in that they give just enough encouragement, and likewise are draconian in their control, and both are equally dangerous to their followers and the folks near them.
 
2014-02-05 12:33:13 PM
Well, after the right honourable magistrate is done with the LDS--and they should be done--she can start with the Church of England next.

I'd say the Catholic Church next but the first head of the COE already did a lot of the dirty work on the Minions of the Antichrist in This Our Beloved EnglandTM.

/I bet the magistrate didn't think the cunning plan through. But she'll get a phone call and this kerfuffle will all go away
/Or is she going to take on the Muslins next?
 
2014-02-05 12:35:45 PM

hubiestubert: My issue with the Latter Day Saints can be summed up simply by the name of their principle prophet, later resurrected to hand over golden tablets that only Joseph Smith ever "read" and then "returned" the plates to said angel: Moroni.

Moron is the name of said angel and prophet.

Why, yes, I DO think of the entirety of the Mormon organization as a vast con job, as much as I think of Scientology as a vast con job. Or the f*cking Nichiren--though, at the Nichiren have some loose basis with a faith that has some history, as opposed to being created whole cloth for the express purpose of getting sweet, sweet, sweet valuta from rubes. And keeping daughters close to home and compliant, so they got that going for them.

Don't get me wrong: folks can use the lessons from the Book of Mormon to live productive, even useful and decent lives, and I hope that their belief gives them comfort, but it doesn't distract me from the vast con job that is the Church of Latter Day Saints. As a younger man, I hung out with enough carnies and grifters to have an appreciation for a good con, and can even admire a good con for the art, especially when applied to those who desperately cry out to be rooked and swindled with wild abandon, and it keeps a lot of folks off the streets I suppose, but the LDS does a lot of damage not just to their followers, but to the communities around them, and what the Mormons have done in Utah, I can easily see Scientologists working their way towards in California if given the chance and another hundred years to settle in. Both are brilliant scams, in that they give just enough encouragement, and likewise are draconian in their control, and both are equally dangerous to their followers and the folks near them.


If your only distinction between the LDS and scientologists is the age of their faith then you must understand that at some point all faiths were young.  They all went from one guy to worldwide success and they did it with the money and power that 'rubes' as you put it willingly gave to them.
 
2014-02-05 12:37:23 PM

RottNDude: It's the biggest crock of shiat religion on the face of the Earth.


No, Scientology is worse. Or at least more in-your-face and blatant about it.
 
2014-02-05 12:50:06 PM
Shiva would like a word with you non-believers. Doesn't everyone worship a blue skinned fertility goddess?


i271.photobucket.com
 
2014-02-05 12:59:11 PM

autopsybeverage: Yeah, but the church threatens imaginary parts of you with imaginary punishments. The mob will actually hurt you.


So will some churches.

Others, like the Hutterites, merely use the threat of poverty and homelessness to keep people in line.  (i.e., you can leave the Hutterite church any time you like--taking with you the clothes you are wearing.  The church owns everything else.)
 
2014-02-05 01:05:49 PM

redmid17: The head of the Mormon church is to appear before court on charges of fraud for basically making people believe in religion Mormonism

FTFY. The two are different.


Yes, one is a subset of the other. But in the larger context, they are the same.
 
2014-02-05 01:27:32 PM

jigger: angryjd: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.


When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.


When the government demands protection money we call it taxes.

When you don't pay and the cops show up to your house with a SWAT team, kill your dogs, and turn your house inside out, some people call it "being civilized".


Well, apart from the poor dogs, if you had "vowed to resist arrest violently and die rather than go to prison", then yes, that IS the civilized response.  And I for one would clap and cheer the SWAT team on while they gave you your beatdown.
 
Ant
2014-02-05 01:28:13 PM

Tom_Slick: Here is the problem with starting a new religion based on artifacts you claim to have seen yourself. Eventually someone will demand to see these artifacts.


STOP PERSECUTING ME!!!!!
 
2014-02-05 01:28:33 PM

markfara: True. Catholic hospitals often perform abortions when the mother's life is in jeopardy. It's official policy, if I'm not mistaken.


You are mistaken.  Abortion is forbidden in all circumstances.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Excommunication_of_Margaret_McBride

You may be thinking of Directive 47, which states that a pregnant woman may be treated even if the treatment may result in the death of the fetus.  But they cannot directly abort.  This means, for instance, that if a woman has an ectopic pregnancy she cannot be given methotrexate to end the pregnancy.  She has to wait until her life is in danger and then have surgery to remove the entire Fallopian tube.  Removing just the fetus is not an option because that's abortion.
 
Ant
2014-02-05 01:30:20 PM

rnatalie: I Believe; that the Lord, God, created the universe 
I Believe; that He sent His only Son to die for my sins 
And I Believe; that ancient Jews built boats and sailed to America 

I Believe; that God has a plan for all of us 
I Believe; that plan involves me getting my own planet 
And I Believe; that the current President of The Church, Thomas Modson, speaks directly to God 

I Believe; that Satan has a hold of you 
I Believe; that the Lord, God, has sent me here 
And I Believe; that in 1978 God changed his mind about black people!


Sounds legit. Where do I send my money?
 
2014-02-05 01:34:13 PM

autopsybeverage: Diogenes: When the mob demands protection money from someone we call it racketeering.

When a church demands protection money from someone we call it religion.

Yeah, but the church threatens imaginary parts of you with imaginary punishments. The mob will actually hurt you.

If you give the former real money for protection from imaginary things, then you're a sucker.


But aren't most conspiracy charges based on the fact the person has a reasonable belief that what they are saying/planning will come true.

If I tell you 'pay me or chucky is going to break your legs' or 'pay me or satan is going to torture you for eternity' and profess to believe both to be real threats aren't they the same?
 
2014-02-05 01:35:12 PM
The Mormon church's PR department has been ordered to crush this story at all cost.  How they plan on doing so, or why they would have to if it was just a frivolous case, remains a mystery.
 
Ant
2014-02-05 01:38:19 PM

redmid17: The head of the Mormon church is to appear before court on charges of fraud for basically making people believe in religion Mormonism

FTFY. The two are different.


Not really
 
2014-02-05 01:39:18 PM

Egoy3k: If your only distinction between the LDS and scientologists is the age of their faith then you must understand that at some point all faiths were young.  They all went from one guy to worldwide success and they did it with the money and power that 'rubes' as you put it willingly gave to them.


It's not the age of the faith, but the scam that underlies it. Scientology was created by a guy who created the whole thing on a bet. And then realized that he could make a bit more at that, than writing pulp science fiction. Rastafari is a young movement, but it's a bit more than smoking weed and listening to Bob Marley and Macka B. The LDS, indeed has many willing participants, as do faith healers and a lot of snake oil merchants, but that doesn't exactly make them pillars of morality, or ethics. There are a LOT of odd cults out there. Odd spiritualists, who are looking to make a buck off faith. My old boss back in Farmington got hooked up with a Quaker offshoot, that had him doing missionary work, and casting off their worldly possessions into their commune, and it sort of fell apart when their leaders decided that they should hold their wives in common, or rather, he could "commune" with their wives, and the other menfolk should study on the glories of abstinence and chastity.  My ex-wife briefly got hooked into a group that was a "fusion of American Indian and Eastern philosophies" that meant she was brought into a circle with a Polish woman who claimed to be a Sioux shaman who did aura readings with a hand held electrode and it spat out some printouts, and who thought it was a cool idea to do a lot of spouse swapping to shore up her marriage after the kids went to college. My step-mother got hooked up with some tent revivalist Baptists back in the day, and Reverend Dale was working his way into getting her into his compound for some serious "religious education" just before my Dad got us to Germany to live on base. I've seen a fair number of scams in my day attached to faith. The one thing that they share, is that folks are looking for something to put their faith into. Yes, they do so willingly. And part of the scam is to give folks something to reach for, all the while reaching into their pockets, and often a bit more.

I know folks of faith, who I admire. I've got good friends who are ministers, a couple of priests, an ex-Jesuit who routinely whoops the tar out of me at chess, there are Buddhists of both Chinese, Tibetan, and Japanese, and even native sons from America who I have studied with, and practiced with. I know folks who have no seminary experience, and have great faith, who I admire, and even as laity who have deep understanding of their faiths, and the one thing that all these folks have in common? They don't push their faith, they are up front about their faith, and their teachings aren't in secret, behind closed doors, there aren't mystic rituals that exclude folks. That is the key for drawing in a lot of folks: secrets. Secret knowledge that isn't for everyone. To make folks feel special.

That's the secret to a good con. To make your rube feel like that they are special, that they are deserving for this extra attention, and that it's worth good money, American money even, to get that attention. Scientology is especially good at this, as are the Nichiren. A lot of Newage--yes, it rhymes with sewage--likewise has their hucksters who trade on folks who want to be special and deserving of the secrets of the Universe, and of course, only a few can afford such secrets. It's not the youth or age of the teachings that makes a scam and a con, it's the reaching for the wallet, deeply. Be that some Baptist faith healer, be that some Newage crystal weaver, be that some cult of UFO worshipers, or some cat who decided to flee to Utah because he couldn't make it in the East, and suckered some folks to thinking that he was the chosen prophet by an angel named Moron...
 
Ant
2014-02-05 01:41:13 PM

Pokey.Clyde: Oh look. Another religion bashing thread on Fark. How original.


Religion was asking for it
 
2014-02-05 01:43:50 PM

Some Coke Drinking Guy: The Mormon church's PR department has been ordered to crush this story at all cost.  How they plan on doing so, or why they would have to if it was just a frivolous case, remains a mystery.


No idea about the how, but I suspect who the complaint was filed by plays pretty heavily into the why.

FTA: "...ex-Mormon Thomas Phillips...Phillips, who lives in Portugal, formerly served as a stake president (responsible for a group of congregations), area controller and financial director for the LDS Church's UK corporate entities, as well as other positions within the church between 1969 and 2002."
 
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