This is the seventh and last 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 are those who do not believe or who only believe partially in LDS doctrine, or believe in the need for major reform inside the LDS church.
This then is the correlated Mormon setup: Those at the top of the LDS hierarchy dominate. Women cannot be too much like men or they are kindly shoved back down again. The very structure of most theological assumptions results in this dominance-submission scheme. Power is at the top. This hierarchy results in an assumption of an unchanging God. God must remain constant so men can strive to be like “Him.” The hierarchy itself must also remain static.
The LDS church claims to change with ongoing modern revelation, but the church does not really change much until it is acted upon by outside forces (polygamy, blacks and the priesthood, etc.) There is not much movement in regards to equality.
In the correlated Mormon system power is conceived of to exert quiet domination and moral control over the members. In the uncorrelated Mormon’s view power is conceived of as personal power which has nothing to do with power or control over another.
Money is the embodiment of power. The more money the church has, the more influence it will be able to exert over society. They are humbly raking in the money through required tithing and gaining more and more quiet power.
Leadership is another symbol of power. In correlated Mormonism leadership involves a thorough working knowledge of the rules. Many rules exist to control others and limit their freedom of thought. It allows male priesthood leaders to counsel and advise those under them according to these rules. It is assumed that people need to be kept in line. Rules are a result of a regulatory approach to others, so rules are made to support the System. After awhile, if that is indeed what they accomplish, they become sacred rules. They take precedence over the individual, who must learn them in order to fit into the System and support it more effectively.
In the uncorrelated Mormon view, rules are developed to increase individual freedom rather than to impose limits. They aim at embracing the individual and serving her or his needs, not those of the System. They are intended to facilitate personal growth. As a result, they are in process. If a rule does not make sense, it can be challenged and modified or even thrown out altogether. Rules never take precedence over the individual.
In the correlated Mormon world view morality is a public issue. In uncorrelated Mormonism morality is a private issue.
Correlated Mormonism desires everyone to conform to its definitions of right and wrong. It wants everyone to support its myths and beliefs. It has everything labeled and defined.
The uncorrelated Mormon view sees the world as constantly growing and changing. It can not be labeled or defined; it can only be observed as it emerges. Understanding comes from watching, learning from, and facilitating the process of emergence. One does not need to control or define.
In correlated Mormonism differences are seen as threats. When differences are labeled dangerous or harmful, it becomes essential to train everyone to think and act in similar ways. In uncorrelated Mormonism differences are seen as opportunities for growth.
If history is any teacher, the end result will be that uncorrelated Mormonism will grow and correlated Mormonism will start to lose energy and move toward a state of entropy.
* Now for the surprise ending and the resource I used to write all of my posts in Understanding John Dehlin’s Uncorrelated Mormon Movement. This is it: Women’s Reality by Anne Wilson Schaef. Yes, I took excerpts from this feminist book written in 1981 and changed the word MEN to correlated Mormonism and WOMEN to uncorrelated Mormonism. Can you believe how well it rings true? You can see where I changed the words to fit the posts because all of the changes are in italics. Read through the posts again and see how it rings true. Why is this? It is because correlated Mormonism is run by MALES. It is a man’s church with a MALE mentality. It does not have sufficient input from women to be balanced. Many people see this and changes are happening. I am excited to see all the changes that will occur in the LDS church over the next 35 years or so. Exciting times!