This past week, Outer Blogness-and-beyond has been full of reports from all sorts of families on all sorts of family situations!
To start with, we can hardly discuss Mormon families without hearing from the Polygamists! (Fascinating podcast — definitely worth a listen.) Eliza is no longer haunted by polygamy now that she no longer believes it might be imposed on her in the afterlife. The modern poly life, however, still has its challenges.
In other old-school Mormon doctrines, the Faithful Dissident wonders about the possibility of choosing your eternal family (rather than focusing solely on the biological family). Speaking of your extended biological family, Holly discusses some interesting genetic studies about Jewish populations. And Reina has good reason to be proud of the nation of her ancestors. But the Urban Koda, discussing marriage and apostasy, provided this week’s feel-good message:
I’m not with her because I’m obligated to her because of the kids, or other obligations, or that I’m worried what people might think if we were to split up.
I’m with her, because I genuinely love her, and I enjoy being with her.
It’s great when family love works that way. Nonetheless, even the happiest families have an element of challenge and compromise. Take the Christian Mom whose daughter has been caught pole-dancing. See the exmo-atheist dad flying his family to Scotland and proudly participating in his daughter’s (Catholic) baptism. And who can forget the hiding-the-booze drama when the Mormon parents come to town? (Tangential but interesting, check out Aerin’s post on Lolita and male feminists.)
Speaking of alternative families, pride came to Utah this week — check out the pics! This led to some constructive discussion of who’s pushing their views on whom. And about who killed traditional marriage. After all that, it may take some creativity to come out to your family.
Considering the challenges of being in a mixed-faith family, I was intrigued by this post. In a nutshell, a Mormon author was incensed that folks on facebook would call a former Mormon “brave.” Then (in a round-about-self-effacing-way) he implied that his own play was much braver than some bitter ol’ apostate. I think this is just a case of a believer who is honestly unfamiliar with what it’s like to come out as unbeliever to your faithful-LDS family — and it may be an opportunity to have a positive and constructive discussion with him about it.
Moving on from families to general Mormon topics, Jonathan did a bit of number crunching, and found that tithing to the CoJCoL-dS is not a terribly efficient way of giving humanitarian aid. El Guapo crunches some more numbers on membership. And the Demon of Kolob was not impressed by the behavior of some Mormons on a recent cruise. In Mormon funnies, Joseph Smith and Nikola Tesla are both portrayed with rays of power coming out of their hands. (Recall that Tesla got the patent for the first wireless communications, as I learned from Schoolhouse Rock, and Italian comic book, and blogging.)