I was reading an ethnography of Mormonism that will be released in the next few months (I got an advance copy) and a thought struck me when the author started describing some Mormon beliefs: There are some aspects of Mormonism that really cannot be explained. Â In other words, Mormons can’t answer some questions about their religion. Â I could be wrong, of course, but here the questions that came to mind:
- Why do people have to have ordinances performed on physical, mortal bodies, thus necessitating proxies? Â If the ordinances can transfer to spirits via proxies, why can’t the spirits be baptized?
- And if there is some reason why they have to be performed on physical, mortal bodies, why can’t this wait until the resurrection?
- If god is omniscient, why do Mormons need to learn handshakes and passwords to get into his kingdom? Â Wouldn’t god know who is worthy and who isn’t?
- If priesthood is required for performing ordinances, then how are female temple workers able to perform washings and anointings?
- When does a prophet speak as a prophet and when does he speak as a man?
- How will god not let a prophet lead the church astray (per, “The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as president of this Church to lead you astray.” – Wilford Woodruff)?
- And, of course, the infinite regress question: Where did the first god come from? Â Joseph’s regression of gods doesn’t actually solve the problem of “who created god”, it just regresses it.