Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Secrets breed lies

 I think the US public deserves a right to know to whom (the corporation) Mitt Romney has sworn allegiance.   No, not Bain or other Wall Street junkies.  There's a corporation that keeps under the radar to which Romney made a secret oath to protect and give all of himself to when called upon.  You may think I am a conspiracy whack-job.  Don't.  I have first hand knowledge of this.

The US military curtails the speech & association rights of its soldiers, service personnel, and even contractors with clearances.  I encourage Romney to voluntarily give up a small part of his religious freedom and tell us finally to whom he gives his allegiance and what oaths specifically he has sworn over his life. Yes, he has, and I know this because I have done this too.

What do I mean?  Be patient with me while I explain.

Romney is a temple worthy LDS member and as such, he's made promises and keeps secrets that could affect the rest of the world. LDS members who go to the temple for their first time to receive their washing & anointing and their endowment are not told what exactly they promise to give.  It’s expected that before they get to the temple, they already have incredible devotion and incredible support to the LDS faith. Once a member enters the temple ceremonies, doors are closed, lights are dimmed and the theater like seats are packed with attendees.  Somewhere around 40 minutes into the ceremony, you are then told that you are about to take on severe obligations and covenants, and now is your chance to leave.  The pressure of family, friends and so many people sitting around you—all donning purest sheep white & uniform temple dress, expected to follow the flock—builds a level of peer pressure not seen in most high-schools.  Conformity is all-but mandated.

When I went to the temple, back in the mid 1980s, I was troubled deeply that I had to promise my own death if I dared discuss or revealed the ongoing of the temple.  I was a month away from entering full-time missionary service to Guatemala.  By the end of the endowment, I was determined to call off the mission and get out of the church.  My parents felt my shock and cancelled their plans for the next several days to take me on a trip to Bear Lake and isolate me so that they could convince me that all would be well.  By the end of that weekend, I was consoled that I would in fact be okay and that the temple may, on the surface, seem ritualistic, but was much deeper than I understood at the time. 

After my mission, I served as a veil worker in the Idaho Falls temple and attended weekly sessions for over a year.  I was inoculated and had memorized every word of the ceremonies in the temple.  Years later, after entering a career in science, I would investigate where the rituals, the oaths, the signs and the penalties had originated through Joseph Smith.  That newly discovered information once again threatened to put my testimony and membership in a tail spin.

Richard Packham published an article about the secrecy surrounding the temple, in which he says:

The biggest secrets involve the special lengthy rituals (the Mormons call them "ordinances") that take place outside of public view in the Mormon temples. The most important of these rituals is called the "endowment" - lasting several hours and taking the Mormon through symbolic washings and anointings (in my day they were actual washings and anointings on the entire naked body), then clothing the Mormon in special clothing and robes (including the notorious "magic underwear," which Mormons call "the garment"). The Mormon then watches and participates in long dramatizations of key events in the coming of the gospel, beginning with the creation of the world, showing Adam's fall, the coming of the Christian gospel (but not the crucifixion and resurrection), and ultimately the Mormon's being admitted into heaven, represented by "passing through the veil (of the temple)." When Romney and I first went through this ceremony, it was a ritualized dramatization with live temple personnel. Nowadays it's a movie. 

I'm beginning to have serious concerns about Romney's commitment to the oaths, covenants and promised secrecy of what he did in the temple.   Mitt Romney, as a faithful LDS member, has solemnly covenanted in the Mormon temple that he wholly-devotes himself, his time and his talents, and everything with which the Lord has blessed him to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

One promise Romney made, called The Law of Consecration is made in the temple with these words: You and each of you covenant and promise before God, angels, and these witnesses at this altar, that you do accept the Law of Consecration as contained in the Doctrine and Covenants, in that you do consecrate yourselves, your time, talents, and everything with which the Lord has blessed you, or with which he may bless you, to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, for the building up of the Kingdom of God on the earth and for the establishment of Zion.

Another promise Romney made is called The Law of Sacrifice.  The words in the temple are: as Jesus Christ has laid down his life for the redemption of mankind, so we should covenant to sacrifice all that we possess, even our own lives if necessary, in sustaining and defending the Kingdom of God.

These are secrets in the temple.  Effectively, Romney made an oath, under penalty of death, that he would give anything, his life, his talents, his time and blessings (including the office of the president?) to the LDS prophet, if asked.  That is, if Monson were to ask him, Romney, perhaps after protesting, would still be required to submit to Thomas S Monson, the President of the Corporation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

I don't believe this is likely to happen.  But I can't know for sure.  I think examining the history of what the Latter-day Saints have been asked to do in the name of politics is important.  I'll write about that later...

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