This is the fourth post in my series: Understanding John Dehlin’s Uncorrelated Mormon Movement. This post is not endorsed by John Dehlin and is my own opinion.
Uncorrelated Mormons often have the following view:
Correlated Mormonism has its own system of logic and reason. While the three great myths and the belief that men can be God are at its core (even though this isn’t talked about anymore), there is far more to it than that. If one adheres to its beliefs and follows its ordinances and principles, one can “prove” or “disprove” anything within the system.
Correlated Mormonism attempts to describe our universe and our lives in a way that “makes sense”. It aims at understanding and explaining the worlds within and around us.
Correlated Mormonism orients much of its research and development effort toward a goal of control. It has embraced white-washing history, taking all your time (no time to question), utopian goals, demand for purity (shame cycle), required confession, unquestioning obedience (you can pray about it, but you better get the right answer or you are wrong), negative judgement (especially for family members or friends who question), groupthink (doctrine more important than reason, or individual experience), and apologetics that distort logic and reason.
In its secular form, logic and reason encourage open-mindedness. It allows a person the freedom to explore anything and gives her or him a process to use when doing so. Since its adoption by correlated Mormonism, however, logic and reason has undergone a significant change. It is now seen as the basis for supporting and proving the myths of correlated Mormonism. It is no longer a tool of learning and exploration.
Many uncorrelated Mormons distrust the “findings” of the correlated Mormon apologists, scholars or gospel-doctrine teachers, and for a good cause. Often, these “findings” have little relation to fact. They are simply data which have been interpreted to suit the bias of correlated Mormon truth claims. They are then used to reinforce correlated Mormon myths. Part of the misuse of logic and reason involves unquestioning faith.
Numbers are also key to the logic and reason used by correlated Mormons. Many more missionary work hours are focused on numbers rather than relationships with people.
If a Mormon missionary tells his mission president how pleased he is with the relationships he has have formed, with the good he has done, the mission president might nod and then launch into a discussion of how few people there are in attendance at the local ward or branch or how more baptisms are needed by a certain date.
Correlated Mormonism belives in numbers. It has to in order to support its own mythology (as being the one and only true church on the face of the earth). Numbers are used to measure, predict and control (even if they have to skew them).
Let me reiterate that uncorrelated Mormons do not consider correlated Mormonism as all bad and do not think that uncorrelated Mormonism is perfect. The important thing to realize is that neither is the way the world is. There are a wide range of choices of belief systems in the world. They are simply different ways to view our world. Power and wisdom are contained in the knowledge that one is free to choose.
References will be given at the end of this series.