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  1. A very interesting article. Thank you for posting this reading.
    I won’t denigrate any type of ritual that people find helpful in realizing our brotherhood and sisterhood with the rest of the human race. But it seems contradictory to expect trust in the face of any type of secrecy. The natural question is, of course, this: if Mormons will not trust non-Mormons with something, why should non-Mormons trust Mormons with anything?
    I didn’t hear an answer to this question. The author seems to challenge the legitimacy of the question, pointing out that people can, if they wish, extend a large measure of trust to other people who keep ritual secrets. He points to historical precedents like the Eleusinian rites in the classical world and Masonic rites in early America. But he fails to point out why people would choose to extend such trust.
    I don’t blame him for not explaining it. I can’t explain it either.
    He also fails to point out that the Eleusinian and Masonic rituals are no longer considered either secret or sacred. The first is a historical artifact. The second is simply a benevolent club. In this light, the author’s precedents don’t bode well for Mormonism, or at least for its temple rituals.

  2. Ooh. Thank you for reading this essay. I have had no desire to go to the temple for over the past year. Not for any doctrinal or anything that I find offensive – simply just the fact that I get nothing out of the ritual.. I want to go back now. Thank you – mike

    1. Hello Mike, I have not gone to the temple for over 30 years because I find the ritual far from spiritual and rather boring. I have no desire to go back, either. When I found out that the part of the Protestant minister was added by Brigham Young at a later date and again removed in 1990 because it upset new converts going to the temple for the first time, I felt that the ceremony has little to do with God’s love or Christ’s sacrifice. Perhaps you should read why so many changes came about in 1990 pertaining to temple ritual.

  3. My understanding was that it wasn’t the secrecy alone that is viewed with questions, it’s that too often we find ugliness behind that veil. As a non-mormon, the shift for me was when I learned about the genital touching part of the ritual. While I understand that part has been removed now, it was only after the internet dispersed that information, when a few bold souls ventured to tell the secret. Too often the Mormon church makes things about what they are not: they spin arguments out of side issues. This isn’t about the fact of secrecy, but what the secrecy hides, and the moral authority of leaders who use these sorts of tactics. The fact is that there is no major world religion that uses secret rituals, and there are reasons for this. If something can’t be done in the light it shouldn’t be done. There was a real famous man who said that, about 2,000 years ago.

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