Mormons / Latter Day Saints (LDS), was founded by Joseph Smith less than two hundred years ago.The Church’s full title is “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”. Smith claimed to have personally communicated with God and Jesus Christ who told him that they were unhappy with all the current churches and that they are going in the wrong direction. Joseph Smith claimed that they instructed him to create a new church which Joseph called it “the only true church on earth”. They believe they are the restored Church from the original Church established by Jesus Christ 2000 years ago.
The Mormons go by the teachings of the Bible and of the Book of Mormon and other scripture. The Book of Mormon is said to have been given to Joseph Smith in the the form of Golden Plates to translate. Smith says that an angel guided him to the location of where the Golden Plates were buried . The book is said to have been written by “reformed Egyptians”. These people are said to have traveled to North America and wrote the book over a period of 1,000 years. Mormons believe that there are different levels or kingdoms in the afterlife: The Celestial Kingdom, The Terrestrial Kingdom, The Telestial Kingdom, and outer darkness. Where a person will end up depends on what they believe and do in this life. I also found out that Mormons have secret handshakes and names that they must keep secret and not tell anyone. These names and gestures are said to be able to get you into Heaven. During my research I came across a fact that Mormons believe that God lives on a planet called “Kolob”. It is also said that Earth once orbited Kolob but fell and now orbits the Sun.
A strange belief that I found was that Mormons believe that there are multiple worlds with multiple Gods. They believe that God created many planets with many people and each planet has its own God. They also believe that if you obtain the highest level of heaven you can also become a God of your own planet. In the LDS Church it is mandatory to give 10% of your income to the church. Mormons claim that if you want to be accepted into the highest kingdom of Heaven (The Celestial Kingdom) you must give an honest sum of money. This, in my view, is shocking. Here we have a church demanding money from it’s members. That means, if a person is earning 30,000 a year they must hand over 3,000 to the church. I read an article that says that the church has an estimated net worth of 30 billion! WOW!! That’s a tasty bit of money! The Church has around 14.1 million follower so with tithing mandatory, the church is picking up a large amount of money.
The Church also has a controversial history surrounding Polygamy or Plural Marriages. This is where a person is entitled to have more than 1 spouse. Joseph Smith, himself, had over 30 wives and many children. Polygamy was a key part of the church and Joesph Smith claimed that polygamy was essential to be accepted into the highest level of heaven. The Book of Mormon condemns polygamy while other LDS doctrine accepts it. Controversy followed when polygamy became a social cause and writers began to publish works condemning polygamy. The U.S then banned polygamy forcing many Mormons to emigrate. In 1910 polygamy was stopped and members were told they would be excommunicated if they were found to be still performing it. Controversy also surrounded the Mormons and Black people. The Mormons believe that black people are descendants of Canaan and are cursed. The 3rd President of the LDS Church once said that the only reason black people were allowed on Noah’s Ark was so that Satan would have representation on Earth. In 1978, Mormons lifted the law withholding black people from becoming priests in the church.
The Mormons are a strange bunch I can tell you. It was a hard religion to research them as I kept coming across contradictions and false information. There is so many interesting and crazy facts about this crowd but I have decided I won’t go into detail because it would take me forever! Some other cool facts include , Mormons believing Satan created Dinosaur fossils to deceive people. The LDS Church is also against tea, coffee, tobacco and drugs. That’s all I have on the Mormons/Latter Day Saints. Thank you for reading my blog. I hope you learned something interesting! If I am incorrect on any matter please do leave a comment and I’ll fix it.
Okey doke! I have conducted my research on Scientology and here are my findings.
Scientology was developed by L. Ron Hubbard who was a science fiction writer. The whole Scientology religion is based on finding your true self and becoming a better human being. Hubbard developed a psychotherapy system called “Dianetics”. Dianetics is supposed to free you from stress and all mental constraints. But it does not free you from incidents that have scarred you for life (Sexual Abuse etc..). It only helps you to deal with these kinds of events. They do this by way of a process called “Auditing”. Auditing is like counselling. It takes you back through painful events in your life and helps you to be freed from the stress and pain they have caused you so you can improve as a human being. The Councillor/Auditor asks you specific questions and writes down your answers. Everything you say is kept in your confidential file. During the session you are hooked up to a E-meter. The E-meter helps locate engrams. Engrams are “mental images which is a recording of an experience containing pain, unconsciousness and a real or fancied threat to survival”. The whole process of Auditing is for you to get rid of your “Engrams”.
It costs nothing to join Scientology but, the courses they offer are very expensive. The courses are all linked to “The Bridge to Total Freedom”. You start at the bottom of the bridge and must work your way up. Each member is hopeful to cross the bridge to total freedom. This is where you are free of all your engrams. Members are required to make donations for study courses and auditing as they move up the Bridge, the amounts increasing as higher levels are reached. Participation in higher-level courses on the Bridge may cost several thousand and Scientologists usually move up the Bridge at a rate governed by their income.
According to Scientology, the founder of the religion is Xenu. 75 million years ago, Xenu is said to have brought billions of his people to Earth in a spacecraft, piled them around volcanoes and killed them using hydrogen bombs. Scientologists believe the essences of these many people remained, and that they form around people in modern times. The whole Xenu story is said to be kept a secret in the Church of Scientology and only revealed to members who have donated large amounts of money and completed the courses. Before a person is given the information about Xenu, they must sign an agreement promising to keep what they hear a secret. Members at the lower levels of Scientology don’t hear much about Xenu. It’s only as you move up the ranks of Scientology do you learn about Xenu. When I was doing my research I found that many of the hierarchy of Scientology had different answers when asked about Xenu. One of them called it lies and another agreed that Xenu plays a part in Scientology.
In my opinion, Scientology is not a religion, it is a cult. It is a brainwashing system. It brainwashes people and gets them to pay more money for these courses. Once they pay and complete the first course, you will feel obliged and encouraged to keep going and pay for more. Also the Church of Scientology has everything about your life on your file and can easily do some serious damaged to your life with that information, depending how much you revealed during your auditing sessions. The only reason Scientology is called a religion is so it can get tax exemptions. I can’t get my head around how people believe this kind of stuff. It baffles me to even think about it. At the start of my research I knew very little of Scientology. The only thing I knew was that Tom Cruise & John Travolta were involved in it. Though I may not agree with their beliefs, I do respect them. There is probably a lot more to Scientology than I have looked at. But I’ll leave that research up to you. I’ve seen enough. Thanks for reading my Blog. I hope you have learned something you never knew. If I am incorrect about anything I’ve written please do notify me and I’ll change it. The next religion I shall be delving into is the Mormons!
I’ve decided to set myself a task. The task is to do research on a number of Christian religions. I will be looking at a select few of Churches. I plan to take a look at Mormons, Jehovah Witnesses, Baptists, Methodists and a few more. I will also take a look at Scientology. I lately took a brief look at Scientology and I plan to take a more detailed look at it. It’s a strange church and has a lot of question marks over it in my view. I will be examining all I can about the churches I select. I aim to discover what they truly believe in. As soon as I feel I’ve done enough research I will post my reactions. I have 1 week off school so I hope to get a bit of research in during my free time. This should be a fun and intriguing challenge. Hopefully, I will learn a lot and benefit from this.
Awhile back I found a Youtube Channel belonging to the Restored Church of God. I began watching their videos. I found their videos ,which are presented by David C. Pack, to be helpful and interesting. I would recommend taking a look at them. Here is a link. http://www.youtube.com/user/RestoredCOG
Well I guess that’s all from me. I might start my research tomorrow. I will take a look at either Scientology or Mormons first.