With all of the evidence that proves beyond a reasonable doubt that mormonism is a sham, why do people still buy into it? It almost makes me think that reason will not always work in apologetics. its as if mormonism (and islam among others) trivialize faith by making it appear unreasonable.
Obviously, they don’t consider it fabricated.
Many non-Christians ask the same question you do, but about Christianity, with equal legitimacy.
Although your question is a little bias, it is nonetheless, valid in some points that I highlighted.
Mormons undergo an intense mental reconditioning when they enter into the cult. This is a common practice in any entity where loyalty is required for success as a unit overall. Psychology, particularly in the areas of emotional manipulation and subliminal suggestion, is the key to most religious cults and sects ultimate recruiting regimen.
Often the adherents are of a personality that craves acceptance with others, as a “recognized” group of special individuals. It tends to work very effectivly with those who have low self esteems and lower IQs. This mindset is literally impossible to shake, and it is usually a mark of some deep seated psychosis that, in most instances, would not render the victim culpable or guilty of sin.
If the Truth, which is contained only in the Catholic Church, is presented to them, and a reasonable time frame is allowed for them to accept it, but they still reject it then the sin is damnable. Often one must remember this is only subject to the final grace and judgement of God, and that the individual must surely undergo some form of mental thought reversal in both learning and belief system for this to actually come about. Miracles do happen.
As for reason in apologetics, I have yet to see it. Often reason is confused with opinion and this is why there exists errors and false religions in the world. Experience fosters reason, but Faith fosters individual beliefs. There is seemingly little reason where it should exist sometimes, even if the proof is right in front of a person. Faith extends beyond reason, and therfore cannot be considered as a key element in religious situations of a personal nature. Naturally, if historical fact is present in apologetics, than reason will have to be present.
That’s not taught by the Catholic Church. Sorry. See Catechism para 819.
**819 **"Furthermore, many elements of sanctification and of truth"273 are found outside the visible confines of the Catholic Church: "the written Word of God; the life of grace; faith, hope, and charity, with the other interior gifts of the Holy Spirit, as well as visible elements."274 Christ’s Spirit uses these Churches and ecclesial communities as means of salvation, whose power derives from the fullness of grace and truth that Christ has entrusted to the Catholic Church. All these blessings come from Christ and lead to him,275 and are in themselves calls to "Catholic unity."276
**Toward unity **
**820 **"Christ bestowed unity on his Church from the beginning. This unity, we believe, subsists in the Catholic Church as something she can never lose, and we hope that it will continue to increase until the end of time."277 Christ always gives his Church the gift of unity, but the Church must always pray and work to maintain, reinforce, and perfect the unity that Christ wills for her. This is why Jesus himself prayed at the hour of his Passion, and does not cease praying to his Father, for the unity of his disciples: "That they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be one in us, . . . so that the world may know that you have sent me."278 The desire to recover the unity of all Christians is a gift of Christ and a call of the Holy Spirit.279
**821 **Certain things are required in order to respond adequately to this call:
- a permanent *renewal *of the Church in greater fidelity to her vocation; such renewal is the driving-force of the movement toward unity;280
- conversion of heart as the faithful “try to live holier lives according to the Gospel”;281 for it is the unfaithfulness of the members to Christ’s gift which causes divisions;
prayer in common, because “change of heart and holiness of life, along with public and private prayer for the unity of Christians, should be regarded as the soul of the whole ecumenical movement, and merits the name 'spiritual ecumenism;”'282
-* fraternal knowledge of each other*;283
- ecumenical formation of the faithful and especially of priests;284
- *dialogue *among theologians and meetings among Christians of the different churches and communities;285
- *collaboration *among Christians in various areas of service to mankind.286 “Human service” is the idiomatic phrase. **822 **Concern for achieving unity "involves the whole Church, faithful and clergy alike."287 But we must realize “that this holy objective - the reconciliation of all Christians in the unity of the one and only Church of Christ - transcends human powers and gifts.” That is why we place all our hope "in the prayer of Christ for the Church, in the love of the Father for us, and in the power of the Holy Spirit."288
Perhaps I stand corrected here. I should have stated: It is of my opinion, based on personal experience and observation, that Truth is only to be found in the Catholic Church. I guess there is more to be considered when seeking Truth when it is presented in full context. Remember that opinions can never be truth due to possible human errors or bias. Thank you for the correction.
To be completely clear, the FULLNESS of Truth is only found in the Catholic Church. Pieces of that Truth can be found elsewhere as well.
Many former-Catholics fall into the category of persons converting to Mormonism, which raises a question about how well such persons were catechized. The fullness of Truth is in the Catholic church. Obviously anyone who leaves the Catholic church does not understand that Truth. As Fr. Corapi likes to say “Truth, in its essence is not a someTHING, it is a someBODY, His name is Jesus Christ”. Persons that leave the Catholic church, no matter where they go, obviously never understood their faith.
But the explanation as to why people “buy into” the sham of Mormonism, or Islam, or any of the other faiths that can essentially be considered Christian heresies, is something else entirely. The reason people fall for Mormonism is not based on reason, it is because they WANT it to be true. They like the “everything is explained” thing or the “families are forever” thing or some other thing. The Mormon story about families is very appealing, especially to emotional, vulnerable people. And they are very good at both sending out emotional hooks as well as shutting down rational discussions.
The decision to accept Mormonism is entirely emotional, and not at all rational. There is no rational basis for believing in Mormonism and, although another poster has posted otherwise, the rational basis for the rejection of Mormonism has a greater foundation in fact than a similar rejection of Christianity as a whole. Mormonism is provably false. The same cannot be said for Christianity.
Your question is amusing to me, since the Bible backs up every Mormon teaching and thus to say it is a “sham” is to say the Bible is a “sham”, which I doubt you meant to say. I have wondered the same thing about “reason” on this website (for example, one poster explained that infants need to be baptized and then taught because of one verse in the Bible, but youth and adults new to the church need to be taught and then baptized because of another verse in the Bible–such head-shaking reasoning!)
The Bible assures that the gospel will be “hidden”, it will impact “one of a family, and two of a city.” It will not be embraced by the entire population. That just is not how God works, based on Biblical evidence. So people will always be puzzled by the believers and I suppose believers who are aware of the “hidden truths” that become so obvious to them as they read the Bible, will be just as puzzled by those who don’t find the hidden truths for themselves. It is not a trivialization of faith. It is experiential reality of vitalized faith in action, guided by the Holy Spirit.
The reason people fall for Mormonism is not based on reason, it is because they WANT it to be true.
doesn’t say much about the human intellect does it. we tend to only see what we want to see. there have been many times in my life where i was blind to the truth at hand because i didn’t like it. this is a consequence of original sin, a darkened intellect.
basically mormons have created a environment where they can keep people from thinking critically about their religion. at this point, their religion is beyond reason because it is outside of it.
since the Bible backs up every Mormon teaching and thus to say it is a “sham” is to say the Bible is a “sham”,
circular logic. where did the bible come from? not joe smith.
but youth and adults new to the church need to be taught and then baptized because of another verse in the Bible–such head-shaking reasoning!)
it makes less sense to initiate people into a organization when they don’t know what they are getting into. as for babies, do they have any choice in the matter anyways? obviously not. they are catholic or mormon if their parents want them to be. that’s what parenting is all about, doing what’s best for your children.
That is not obvious, and not necessarily true.
DeeDee, Parker cannot support his statement anyway. Don’t allow yourself to be distracted.
The Bible does not support the Book of Mormon story, in fact the Book of Mormon story is provably false. The Book of Mormon claims that persons from the Middle East emigrated to the Americas in the time period asserted by the Book of Mormon (hundreds of years BC). DNA evidence from native Americans (north, central & south) prove that to be utterly false. END OF STORY. The Book of Mormon story is a total fabrication & it goes downhill from there. There are many other proofs, but once there is one, what does it matter how many more there are? False is false. Mormonism is based on a false “scripture”. Hence, everything about Mormonism is suspect.
Don’t get into a “says so”/“no it doesn’t” argument comparing the Bible and the BOM. The BOM is provably false on its face. The Bible is not. There is no comparison, no matter how much a Mormon might want to believe otherwise.
On the contrary, I have found it to be utterly true. Every person that has left the Catholic church, at least in my experience, and that includes vast numbers of persons posting to this forum, did not understand the faith they were leaving.
Is that evidence that the statement is 100% true? Perhaps not, but on the other hand I have never seen one instance to contradict that statement. Even those persons who claim to have had a “Catholic eduction” and “studied the faith” have been shown to have an inaccurate view of the Catholic faith.
But since you’re so sure that it is “not obvious” and “not necessarily true”, go ahead and give your examples. My conclusion is based on numerous examples gathered over a lifetime, what’s yours based on?
And then there’s the “Pearl Of Great Price”. :rolleyes:
I find the statement “mormons have created a environment where they can keep people from thinking critically about their religion” quite true. Mormons that question the factual basis of their faith are marginalized and, if necessary, expelled. There is quite a bit of documentation of this available. Such persons are not given answers to their questions, they are treated as heretics and/or are ostracized. This sort of behavior is not unusual for Mormons because they routinely ostracize any person who has fallen into inactivity in their faith. If someone publicly questions the faith, it’s just worse.
It’s very hard to call Mormonism a faith as opposed to a cult. While it may be more charitable to refer to to Mormonism as a faith, it may not be accurate. But “cult” is very inflammatory so many people may avoid that term. Nevertheless, many aspects of Mormonism are cult-like and their historical treatment of questions/dissent about the faith supports that view.
I believe you.
That being said, assuming we’re both referring to genuine, real, true experiences, your claims don’t stand up as ultimately as they were expressed (as I read them). I am sure there are many Catholics who left the Church due to inadequate catechesis etc. as you claim. But I also know many Catholic who left the Church with a full understanding of the Catholic Church. You may not know of such people, but I do. Many of them. Don’t let your apparently limited experience or exposure to such people cloud your judgment.
That’s nice. I know of no such persons.
I know of persons who CLAIM to have had a full understanding of the Catholic faith, but then, but upon listening to their understanding and their list of “flaws” of the Catholic faith, it was very clear that they did not understand the faith they left for the heresy of Mormonism. This includes even those who were raised Catholic & who went to Catholic school their entire life & then converted to Mormonism as a young adult.
It’s important to realize that Mormons view Catholics as a prime “feeding ground” for conversions. It is all too apparent that such a situation can easily result from a poorly-catechized Catholic going off in search of the “meaning of life” & then coming into contact with a Mormon Missionary. All “Catholic to Mormon” converts I have come in contact with have had in their backgrounds two things ~ poor catechisis in their faith and YOUTH. They were seduced into Mormonism somewhere between the age of 18 & 25, a very vulnerable age, and they DIDN’T UNDERSTAND THEIR CATHOLIC FAITH.
Bottom line ~ we cannot assume understanding of faith. And the primary person in charge of teaching the faith is not a Priest or other religious it is US because the person most in charge of teaching a child is their parent. (Teachers like to tell us that we parents are parents for life & they are only teachers for a short time, that’s TRUE.) So we better know what we’re talking about.
If we’re parents, we need to teach our children. If we’re grandparents, we need to teach our children and THEIR children. We need to set the example. We need to go to church with them. We need to TEACH in every way there is possible to teach. We cannot ASSUME understanding, we have to TEACH it. Jesus gave us this job. It is obvious that it would be incumbent upon us to impart such knowledge to anyone we love, at the very least, and the world at large as well.
And then, maybe in the next generation not so many Catholics will, in ignorance of their faith, switch to Mormonism.
Martin Luther wrote quite extensively to prove beyond any reasonable doubt that Christ was the Messiah in order to convince Jews to convert to Christianity. He was beside himself when most Jews didn’t buy his arguments and logic. In his emotional outrage he wrote nasty and anti-Semitic things about the Jews; some of which were used by the Nazi’s to help justify the holocaust.
I guess my point is that no matter how much evidence there is supporting the truth of the Catholic faith, don’t be surprised if non-Catholics fail to see that truth. Their minds aren’t open to evidence that contradicts their beliefs and probably have a huge investment (emotional) in maintaining those beliefs.
I would also say, Mormons would say the same things about Catholics (we have a huge investment as well). Maybe it is just the nature of man to only pick and chose those things that support our beliefs while ignoring the evidence to the contrary. Another current example is the small group of conservatives who still believe President Obama wasn’t born a U.S. citizen despite copies of his birth certificate from Hawaii and local newspaper clippings announcing his birth.
The only thing we can do is to pray their (Mormon) eyes and minds will be opened to the truth.
As for example?
From my point of view, an “as for example” is the doctrine of original sin. No wonder I find such fear and trepidation among some posters about whether to allow others to have their own thinking process. Christ’s atonement so obviously overcame “original sin” that I am astonished every time I find someone writing about it as doctrine. My thoughts are “has this person not read the Bible and thought about it?” But, then again, the reference to “sacred tradition” is pointed out time and time again, making that more important than the Bible. It is disheartening to find these kinds of logic patterns. How can the Holy Spirit penetrate such a heart? 'Can’t happen when fear is the basis of the belief pattern.
The Mormon church is false? I must have missed the news release. In what newspaper was it announced that the mormon faith is false? To my understanding it has not been proven false yet. Mormons still have the original 11 witnesses to the book of mormon and none of these witnesses ever denied their claim even on their deathbed or when they left the lds faith. And then of course, we have the wives of these witnesses. None ever claimed that their husbands were fraudsters. That is quite unusual. Plus we have a book which is over 500 pages and no one to my knowledge has come up with a rational explanation of how it came about. Did Joseph Smith write it? Highly unlikely. Did Sidney Rigdon write it? He had a brain but not likely. No one ever saw Joseph with a manucript in hand and in fact considering all the paper and ink it would have taken to write such a book, not to mention feathered pens, the local store would have run out of ink supplies many times. But as far as I know no one ever testified that they sold Joseph Smith a lot of ink and paper. Now that would be a clue.
The mormon faith comes up for a lot of criticism here. Strange since the faith has many good people in it. If the world had more mormons it certainly wouldn’t be a worse place. All faiths have the seeds of doubt in them. I see no evidence that god exists except by faith that he does exist. I see no evidence outside of the bible that Christ performed miracles. It would be wonderful if such events could be confirmed by the discovery of new scrolls…scrolls written by an eyewitness. Now that would be something. Mormons base their belief on faith and the witness of the holy ghost. They pray about the book of mormon and receive a witness that it is true. And that is why they remain members.
Never at this point in time will mormonism be proven true through evidence. If that were the case, every catholic on this forum would convert to mormonism but all for the wrong reasons. God does not work through conclusive evidence but through faith. It the same for the catholic faith. Many non-catholics could claim the same about the catholic faith: how can they believe such a sham? And an atheist would claim that all religion is a sham.
Words can come back to bite you.