"Next week, we will look at how we can see the hand of God in history and give a
reason for the hope that is in us."You're really funny.
The very idea of God's hand in history, is anathema to some of today's mockers
and scorners. However you may find that most are with you.The
basic proverb that "Righteousness exalteth a nation but sin is a reproach to any
people" holds true in any era.The "accidental" view of history is
what was in vogue when I was at University studying history, although not all of
the professors were of that opinion.The only problem I have with the
development of this theme is that it seems to assume that there was an "Age of
Faith" corresponding with much of the Dark Ages, when I don't think people knew
much about Christianity because it was taught in a dead language (Latin) and
dissent was hideously punished.There needs to be freedom for faith
to survive. There have been a few bright periods when people could choose to do
the right thing and actually chose it, but we look in vain to find any very
protracted Age of Faith. At least that's my view of history after having
studied it for its facts rather than the philosophies of historians of any
particular school of thought.
Mr. Cannon cannot see the decadence of religion. He values tradition and
spirituality over intellectual honesty. We can agree and disagree
about the successes and failures of Western civilization. I see it's greatest
failure as succumbing to religion. I see it's greatest triumph as starting to
take the training wheels off.
Kevin,Your idea of religion seems to be founded on man's use of
power to enslave others - under the guise of religion. That has nothing to do
with God's idea of religion, which is to make all mankind equal to Himself, with
all the responsibilities and all of the joy and enjoyment that comes from that
lofty position. What is the difference between some of the clergy
telling us that the sky is going to fall unless we act immediately and do
exactly what they tell us to do, and Mr. Obama instilling fear in us so that we
will blindly follow him and accept, without thinking for ourselves, his chaotic
financial 'changes'? History really does repeat, doesn't it?Mr.
Cannon has clearly and concisely presented an outline, that if we use as a study
guide, will give us information upon which we will be better able to draw our
own conclusions about the causes that have influenced the changes that have
occurred over the past 500 years.To disagree with his premise
because you have issues with some cleric who used his position improperly shows
a lack of enthusiasm to find truth.
Becoming free from religion has only helped us. Beginning with the 17th
century Age of Enlightenment, we have become liberated from superstition and
corrupt religious control. That is why we have made what progress weve made.I agree with the author that we are becoming more decadent, but it is
not because of less religion. Utah is also becoming more decadent. Greed and decadence go hand-in-hand with controlling patriarchal religions,
because they promote ignorance and blind obedience. People who are
trained to think for themselves are less susceptible to demagogues, hucksters,
and empty glittering promises of material fulfillment.
There is something ironic in your statement, "People who are trained to think
for themselves are less susceptible..."
Leaning how to think isnt the same as learning what to think.Schools
and universities should be teaching students how to think on their own.
We are just now living in an age of decadence?People have been
boozing and drugging and having recreational sex and worshipping money and power
since the dawn of civilization. Gimme a break.Get
control of your own life. A lot of the LDS paranoia with "decadence" is nothing
more than subconscious envy of the recreational sex and power and money and
leisure living. "We deny ourselves of these things, so we can't stand the
thought of someone else getting some of it." Don't be fooled. People who are
secure with themselves and at peace with life don't sit and fret about what the
aristocracy is doing in the palace. Everyone knows what is going on in the
palace, because it is the same thing that has always gone on there. The local
in-the-closet porn addictions and the near-religious obsession over "free
marketing" schemes and real estate fortunes and being "financially independent"
are the symptoms of what I'm talking about. The outward appearances and
rhetoric may be squeeky clean around here, but there is a powerful current of
raging horomones and money-lust beneath the pious surface. Hence all the
Kevin and "Decadence" are exactly the problem the authors referred to, as Mike
Richards correctly pointed out. Religion can be corrupt, too.
Historically it's been rather easy to see when it is. Look around the world
today.But don't make the prejudicial leap that all religion is
corrupt. That is neither true nor fair.And don't make the mistake
of stereotyping religious people as not "trained to think for themselves," or
you'll overlook a greatness and strength in American society.
I like decadence. We could sleep on dirt floors, eat cold oatmeal and use
outhouses. What defines decadence? You don't need to dine at the Olive Garden.
You could can food and spin wool. One man's decadence is another man's
necessities.Do you need a Brooks Brothers suit to attend Sacrament
Meeting? You could buy a modest suit from Sears.The father of
Neoconservatism, Leo Leo Strauss taught that decadence was the fruit of
liberalism. Leo miss the target by a city block. Decadence in America, I
believe, is a result of capitalism. Decadence is about marketing and creating a
need to buy a $80,000 car when a Honda would do. Marketing sells us lobster when
beans and franks would feed us.I'm not arguing against capitalism.
We create markets and markets create jobs.
These are the liberal democrats rolling off the assembly lines of the
"institutions of higher learning", willingly brainwashed by professors who came
off the same assembly line some years before.
Would the Deseret News please stop censoring my rebuttals?
This is a bunch of nothing. Cannon's analysis lacks the economic perspective:
classical, neoclassical, and Marxian. Of course I'm not going convince anyone
here, least of all Joe Cannon, that this is of any importance.I
think this is part of the morphing of the D-News into the Mormon Times. Get it
Demosthenes, I agree that some churches have done good things, but when they get
big, they get corrupt and controlling. Then its more about power and collecting
souls than about God.Speaking of decadence who is it thats
investing a few billion dollars in a shopping mall and in million-dollar condos
in Salt Lake City -- while telling its members theres little money for
"Decadence," you're stereotyping again when you say "big" means corrupt. That's
an unfounded assertion."Some" churches have done good things? Can
you name a church that has NOT done good things?According to
published news reports, the Mormon Church is not using any tithing funds in the
Salt Lake development. When did the Church tell its members "there's little
money for assistance?"Prejudice, stereotyping, and unfounded
assertions are not a good way to make a point.
Very good series of columns. Your commentary on our age (or end thereof) is
spot on! There is too little that is thought provoking or intelligently
presented in newspapers or othere medis forms.