WmJas Tychonievich has written several posts concerning the recent decision by leadership of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints to 'ban' the term Mormon being used to refer to the church and its members.
This has created angst and uncertainty among the church membership (as was inevitable) because 'Mormon' has been used for more than a century and a half by innumerable official church organizations, missionaries, books, documents, and in personal discourse between church members - as well as among outsiders.
The name change came along-with several other changes marking a delayed (compared with other large Christian denominations) but swiftly-accelerating convergence of the CJCLDS with mainstream Establishment Leftism - especially in relation to the birdemic-peck and antiracism-diversity agendas.
Name changing is - like 'reorganizations' - a typical, compulsive, and careerist behaviour of managers in bureaucracies; so much so, that many people seem to assume it is normal and 'natural' for human institutions to be in an almost continual churning of re-naming and re-organizing.
Because this is self-interested behaviour by bureaucrats, there is a temptation to assume that is the whole story. But there is a much more deeply sinister, and indeed demonic, aspect to re-naming.
The proper and natural reason for re-naming is that a name is wrong in some significant way: ie. that using the name does harm.
Re-naming intrinsically therefore includes the assumption that the previous, now abolished, name was indeed wrong - and therefore that the people who used that name were also wrong.
Re-naming is intrinsically an act of aggression against ancestors: a type of 'year zero' radicalism.
Furthermore, name change entails that those who continue to use the prohibited word are also wrong.
Consider the way that political correctness continually introduces and then demonizes words for its chosen victim groups.
Anyone who uses old/ obsolete/ prohibited terminology is immediately disparaged (or worse) - because by using the older word, they are regarded as having demonstrated their affiliation to what was wrong; they have done a wrong thing in using that name.
Such people are often, indeed, regarded as if they had performed an aggressive act.
Therefore, name change introduces an element of anxiety and trepidation about the use of language. To use the new word is regarded as 'a good thing' - an act of obedience and compliance to those who claim moral power; while not to use that word is either a revelation of ignorance/ incompetence; or an act of dissent.
And when a new name is introduced by a religious leader, use of the old name is tainted with defiance of authority; with heresy, apostasy...
But there is even more to this matter or renaming; because such feelings of angst may be an actual purpose of name change.
In other words, name change can be a type of PSYOPS - or Psychological Warfare; intended (by at least some of those behind the name change) to create psychological distress, uncertainty, demoralization, confusion.. and even a kind of insanity.
Name changing may, in other words, be a subversive, destructive or value-inversional attempt at psychological manipulation.
The Mormon name change has this aspect - since the word has been abolished without any possibility of substitution.
It is not just that "Member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints" is a grossly clumsy and time-wasting alternative to Mormon; but that there are grammatical uses derived from Mormon that have no other substitute short of a sentence-long paraphrase. As one of many examples: Mormon theology.
Therefore, forbidding the use of Mormon to the obedient faithful church members will inevitably create a continual and ineradicable sense of exactly that kind of sanity-threatening psychological distress, uncertainty, demoralization, confusion - which is the objective of PSYOPS.
We have all experienced multiple example in the field of sex, sexuality and race - but the phenomenon is pervasive; and while commoner now, goes back several decades.
For example, back in 1974 (and under a 'conservative' government) there was a reorganization of the counties of Britain - which not only changed administrative boundaries, but abolished ancient names to replace them with invented or repurposed ones.
My county of Somerset (going back to Anglo-Saxon times) was re-named Avon. Ancient and small counties like Rutland and Westmorland were abolished. More egregiously; the old Gaelic named Scottish county of Clackmannanshire was made part of... Central Region.
This was experienced by many people as an attack on local patriotism and their sense of belonging; and I have no doubt that that was exactly what it was - at root and by genuine intent.
Of course, most of those who voted and implemented this scheme were shallow materialistic functionaries merely - but behind that was a malicious intelligence that was engaged in psychological warfare against the traditional and local patriotisms within Britain.
And recognized as part of a centralizing and depersonalizing agenda leading towards the deletion of local autonomy with takeover by central national government; then assimilation into the European Union superstate; and eventually subordination to the (at present covert) world government that arrived in 2020.
Back in 1974, evil intent was more widely discerned than now; and many of these 1974 name changes were undone and reversed over subsequent years; and indeed led to an increased awareness of the importance of such things; such that unconscious and unconsidered, taken-for-granted tradition became a conscious choice - which was all to the good.
That is how those on the side of Good, who wish to resist evil-motivated PSYOPS, should regard such aggressions: as an opportunity for increased self-awareness and a chance to fight back.
Names matter, words matter - which is why the Satanically-motivated Global Establishment and its national branches and mass media are continually manipulating language.
But by engaging in linguistic PSYOPS; the Authorities also create opportunities for verbal counter-measures and tactics.
These may be negative and defensive: a refusal to comply.
But verbal counter-measures could also - if they were made component elements of an overall strategy of Romantic Christianity - become positive and creative interventions in the spiritual war: interventions on the side of divine providence.
Very astute observation - let us not forget that the 'name' of someone or something in the Bible also refers to the person/thing blind it and thus the identity. Also see Geneis 2,19.
@mike.a - https://charltonteaching.blogspot.com/2021/10/an-attempted-definition-of-romantic.html
Parallels with changing identity. Compulsory reassignment surgery. Being forced to no longer identify as Mormon and all that that has historically entailed. A potential cleansing of the Mormonism out of Mormonism. They really do love messing with logos don’t they?
The Mormon Church leaders will find that they've laid an egg with this move. More of a 'Sigh-Oops!'.
“You will own nothing and be happy.” Nor will you have any identity, or place, or kin. All is subject to arbitrary rearrangement as dictated from “above” (actually below). I have come to appreciate the old admonition to “take refuge” in the Lord Jesus Christ. Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” Maybe these are the only two words utterly proof against the demonic subversion rampant in our time.
Jeffrey Johnson has left a comment:
"As a Mormon, I can't stand the changes that the CJCLDS have taken. Back in the day in July we would have talks and Sunday school lessons based on the early Mormon pioneers and what they had to suffer and their struggles to get the church established. Even on my mission in Guatemala we would talk about the pioneers and the local Guatemalan members loved those talks. Now, we never talk about the pioneers because it's un-inclusive or something. It's like they never existed.
"When President Nelson announced the change banning the word Mormon, I wanted to be supportive because the most important thing that we can do as followers of Christ is make sure that we are following Jesus Christ. However what has the church done since banning the word Mormon? Now it's just Globalism, Globalism, Globalism.
"Now General Conference talks are about how Trump is bad, Black Lives Matter, we opposed gay marriage because 'muh states rights but not because Sodomy is a sin, we are supposed to take the [peck] because "[Pecks] Save Lives" or something, we have to help refugees move into Utah and help drive up housing prices and increase crime and we have to be "Good Global Citizens." It's the same smug drivel that you get from the media and government.
"The new CJCLDS has very little to do with Jesus Christ and the Restored Gospel and a lot to do with promoting soft leftism. Rank and file church members are very demoralized and you can see it on them at church on Sundays. Taking away their identity as Mormons and being replaced as "Good Global Citizens" is a huge part of it. I'm still a faithful attending member because I recognize that I need to take the sacrament on Sundays and my children need to attend primary.
"I ask myself what it would take to get me to stop attending and I have 3 hard lines on that. If the CJCLDS ever ordains women to the Priesthood or allows homosexuals to be married in the temple, or allows bishops to conduct civil marriages of homosexuals then me and my family are done. Right now the soft leftism is just annoying and demoralizing but nothing that can't be repaired with inspired prophetic leadership. However if the church ever changes basic fundamental doctrine then, that's it."
This may seem an odd comparison; when I was a kid, my brothers and sisters called me Dinda. No one uses it anymore except the brother just older than me who has always been like a teacher to me, and it's endearing. I don't really want anyone else to call me that.
That's pretty much how I feel about being called Mormon. It's nice when it's used endearingly, but very unpleasant otherwise. I know that you, Bruce, use the word endearingly, but for those who dislike Mormons, it can feel mean.
And Mormons are always sad when people won't even consider them Christians. Church leadership has been trying to get people to use the official name ever since I can remember. I tried very hard as a little girl, but I'm colloquial, as my mom would say. I don't even know if I'm using that word right.
To the broader point, I think the breaking of language is ultimately going to break Leftism, like at the tower of Babel. So I try not to get too psyched out about it. They are destroying their own project against God.
@L "To the broader point, I think the breaking of language is ultimately going to break Leftism, like at the tower of Babel. "
I don't think so; because Leftism is about breaking. Babel broke language, and was itself broken by that break. But this Old Testament story is a misleading guide for what is required nowadays, in our post-religious world.
In the Old Testament it seems that God quite often sorts bad things out without requiring any conscious positive/ good choice from the Hebrews; and also things are sorted-out for the Hebrews as a group, not so much for individuals. Salvation (which lay in the future) was for the 'people' not for individuals.
But now, things are very different; groups are weak, broken or corrupted - so what good is required of us is individual; and God wants us to understand and choose good consciously.
And therefore God does Not want to *manipulate* us, or the world, to make good outcomes. God will not manipulate the mortal world to save us from our evil choices in this mortal life.
Manipulation of unconscious, uncomprehending, duped, merely-obedient people is now a tool of evil only.
I do Not believe that (here-and-now) mainstream, totalitarian, secular Leftism is self-correcting; so its 'excesses' will Not lead to good but just to more advanced evil. e.g. the breaking of language will lead to the collapse of civilization, but (of itself) this will just lead to more purely destructive, more chaotic evil.
*Unless* there are 'good people' (i.e. people affiliated with the side of good) who understand what is happening, and choose to support and sustain good.
In sum - I think the way that God is working in the Left's destruction of language is to teach us the importance of truth - and the evil, and evil consequences, of untruth in all its manifestations. Our job is to lean that lesson, and pick the right side.
Yes. I guess I should have referred directly to CS Lewis's "That Hideous Strength", since that's what I was thinking of. The good side is not exactly organized, so it just seems like, "How is this going to work out?" Wow, remembering that book is really fun.
When I first read it, the ending came across a bit "Deus ex machina", but as I watch current events, the ending seems more plausible, even obvious.
So I agree, we need to be consciously choosing God's side, his truth/coherence, his spiritual understandings. But I want to avoid the discouragement from the Left and darkness seeming so much more organized/powerful. That's why your blog is so great for reminding us that seeking institutional 'power' is counterproductive at this time. And forever going forward.
I guess I feel that language must become something that serves relationships of love, rather than the other way around, but it has to be properly understood. Language serving relationships is a Leftist wedge ("if you love them, use their preferred pronouns!" kind of stuff), but I think it's only that way because they deny the primacy of God's loving relationship with us. "If you love me, keep MY commandments." Language should be used to express love for God and the goodness of His creation. So when Leftist language games jostle us from taking these things for granted, it's an opportunity to make consciously good language choices.
"if you love them, use their preferred pronouns!"...
Truthfulness is a primary value; and far more important than 'not hurting feelings' in the immediate term.
Real love (Not a thing given promiscuously to someone merely because they self-identify as member of some victim group) is wanting that specific person's well-being - well-being at least in the longer-term and ideally in eternity; which is a Very different matter from doing Whatever they happen to ask of you today.
This corruption of language is downright insidious. I prefer to read books written prior to the 1960s as the language within these books is (usually) more vibrant and full of life. Modern language has become dessicated and pseudo-technical and lacking in life; it has no beauty or warmth. Referring to women as "uterus havers" for example.
I'm reminded of an American politician in the 1990s who used the word "niggardly", a perfectly acceptable and appropriate word to use in that particular context, and was fired and forced to apologize just because this word sounds similar to another word that a certain race finds deeply offensive. The absurdity of this boggles my mind.
My everyday, common speech is old fashioned and sometimes downright archaic and I live Portland Oregon, a city where many of the inhabitants consider any kind of speech that isn't a particular kind of politically correct to be "violence".
A pox on them, I say.
I do not want to detract from your valid and necessary criticisms of manipulators of obedient dupes. But I'd rather count mormon.org as the wrong move and churchofjesuschrist.org as the right move, whatever other wrong or right moves may be going on. Mormon was always a nickname, never the real name. It is more important to self-identify with Christ than with Mormon. Mormon.org was a concession to those who wanted to sell Mormon culture as non-threatening and non-judgmental. I hated it. It was part of many popularity moves that almost drove me from the Church. I guess that's why I feel so strongly about it.
@Lucinda - It strikes me as net-loss, and to be caught in a double-bind, to be dissatisfied with one's birth name and reject it - yet not to have another and analogous name to replace it. Being name-less seems a worse fate than having a disliked name.
I won't argue with that.
I am so glad for your encouragement against PSYOPS. Even if I don't necessarily agree about the name issue, the PSYOPS are there in SO MANY ways that are more pressing to me. When I feel fight-or-flight-y, I definitely am predisposed to flee. But I want to stand my ground, I want to stay in the church for my own reasons. It really helps to have you making these points, so I can think more clearly and not give into irrational impulses.
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