Apathy is not a problem, it’s a symptom and a solution


Almost all of my posts are directed to LDS who are not in leadership positions.  But with this one post, I want to talk about, and perhaps even to, the leaders.

Apathy is not a result of bad members,
it’s a result of uninspired leadership

Apathy in the church is a manifestation of a problem with the leadership, not the members.  Inspired leaders do not preside over apathic congregations.  Take Ammon and his brethren:

And as sure as the Lord liveth, so sure as many as believed, or as many as were brought to the knowledge of the truth, through the preaching of Ammon and his brethren, according to the spirit of revelation and of prophecy, and the power of God working miracles in them—yea, I say unto you, as the Lord liveth, as many of the Lamanites as believed in their preaching, and were converted unto the Lord, never did fall away.  (Alma 23: 6)

The converts of Ammon (and his brethren) remained 100% active throughout the rest of their lives.  Apathy never became an issue.  Why?

Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this question—unto what were ye ordained?  To preach my gospel by the Spirit, even the Comforter which was sent forth to teach the truth.  And then received ye spirits which ye could not understand, and received them to be of God; and in this are ye justified?  Behold ye shall answer this question yourselves; nevertheless, I will be merciful unto you; he that is weak among you hereafter shall be made strong.  Verily I say unto you, he that is ordained of me and sent forth to preach the word of truth by the Comforter, in the Spirit of truth, doth he preach it by the Spirit of truth or some other way?  And if it be by some other way it is not of God.  And again, he that receiveth the word of truth, doth he receive it by the Spirit of truth or some other way?  If it be some other way it is not of God.  Therefore, why is it that ye cannot understand and know, that he that receiveth the word by the Spirit of truth receiveth it as it is preached by the Spirit of truth?  Wherefore, he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoice together.  And that which doth not edify is not of God, and is darkness.  (D&C 50: 13-23)

Ammon preached to the Lamanites by the Spirit of truth, which resulted in the edification of both parties.  In other words, he preached by the gifts and powers of the Holy Ghost and the (non-member) Lamanites who eventually converted received the word he preached also by the gifts (see D&C 46: 14) and powers of the Holy Ghost. They continued this same process and no one became apathetic.  But no one can receive the word by the Spirit of truth unless it is preached by the same Spirit.  Therefore, uninspired leadership alone is to blame for apathy in the church.

Ah, but surely the receivers carry some of the blame, too, right?

Wrong.  We are talking of members of the church, not non-members, so these are people who have already received the word and who are already willing to receive more of the word.  They believe in the word, they believe the word will be at church and they go to church to receive it.  They expect and believe their leaders will give them the word in the Spirit of truth, meaning that it will be dispersed “according to the spirit of revelation and of prophecy,” by the gifts and powers of the Holy Ghost, “the power of God working miracles in them”, just as Ammon spread the word.  If, though, after they go and listen to their leaders, they remain apathetic, it is entirely their leaders’ fault.  The leaders are uninspired.  Period.

Without the manifestations of the Spirit, boredom sets in

Anyone who has experienced manifestations of the Spirit knows that any “religious” experience in which the Spirit is not manifesting itself is not really a religious experience.  It is just going through the motions.  When the Spirit is present, a religious gathering can last all day long and one still can’t get enough.  Without the Spirit, boredom quickly sets in and ten minutes becomes an eternity.  Many will say that it is up to the members to bring the Spirit to a meeting, in other words, that you get what you put into it.  This, though, is a cop-out to try to remove the responsibility of the leaders from ministering the gospel as the scriptures direct: in the Spirit of truth.

In other religious denominations, in which pastors are paid, the members do not simply suffer through boredom-filled meetings.  If the pastor does not bring the Spirit, they either fire him or the members go elsewhere, to a pastor that they feel does possess the Spirit. Not so with the LDS.  We do like the Puritans and consider it saintly to suffer through week after week of boredom.  (See The Title of Insufferable, Self-Righteous Prigs.)

Motivation is not the issue

The typical tactic used by uninspired leaders is to try to motivate the members to do their duty, as if motivation were the problem.  For example, not a single Sunday will go by without an elder’s quorum president striving to remind, encourage and motivate his quorum to do home teaching.  Success stories will be drawn from talks of GA’s and such, showing that home teaching is important and effective.  Week after week the elders’ ears will grow more and more weary with hearing the broken “home teaching” record play.  In one ward that I was a part of, one of the elders got so tired of hearing it that when the bishop sent one of his counselors to deliver a special bishopric message to our quorum of elders, and it turned out to be about home teaching, this elder stormed off in anger and didn’t return again to the quorum until he was finally coaxed gently back.

Member missionary work is another area that is treated like a motivation problem.  Members generally are excited about the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ and do not need motivation.  They do, however, need inspired leadership.  Bringing a non-member friend to a boring meeting is not something everyone is willing to do.  If the leadership is inspired and the gathering of the saints are occasions in which the Spirit is poured out and manifestations are regular, members naturally spread the word.  This is true of all cultures and religions.  For example, in the Catholic religion and regions of the world, when someone has witnessed a virgin appear somewhere, word spreads like wildfire and everyone goes to see what Spiritual manifestation is occurring.  The miraculous is widely held as a sign of the divine working, or as the Savior puts it, “the works of the Father.”  If you remove the works of the Father from any church, even one that carries the name of Christ, you are left with a church of man.  So, “the power of God working miracles in” leaders is very important.

Uninspired leaders are not sanctified

The Lord has made it plain that all leaders are to be sanctified.  If they are not sanctified, they are not to be leaders, or “teachers” of the word.  (See Scriptural Discussion #5: Teachers—Must Be Sanctified.)  Sanctified leaders possess the spirit of prophecy and revelation, yet, how many leaders have actually prophesied in the church?  How many leaders have actually received a revelation, not just inspiration, but the type that can be written down?  Go and ask your leader if he or she has ever prophesied or ever received a revelation from the Lord and see for yourself.

Unsanctified leaders are more like managers than leaders.  No one wants to be “managed.”  Heck, no one wants to be led, either, unless the Holy Ghost is doing the leading, then everyone wants to be led.  Unless a leader is sanctified and thus possesses the guidance, gifts and powers of the Holy Ghost, those who follow his leadership are being led by just a man.

Apathy is a good thing

If you touch a hot iron, you feel pain.  That pain may seem like a bad thing, but it really is a good thing as it alerts you to the danger of the hot iron so that you can remove your hand and avoid further damage to your body.  All symptoms of illness, then, although they don’t feel good, are but signals to us that there is a problem.

Leadership will often see apathy not as a signal that there is a problem, but as the problem itself. The apathy itself is then addressed, not its cause.  The members will be preached to and made to feel guilty for not doing their duty.  They will be encouraged and motivated and every other trick in the book to get them to do something that they would naturally do anyway, without any external influence, if only they heard the word preached to them in the Spirit of truth.

An argument could be made that uninspired leadership should not be encouraged by acting on it.  Only inspired leadership should be acted upon.  After all, if the membership acted upon uninspired leadership and brought their friends to boring church meetings in droves, what would be the result?  However, such an argument is not necessary because man, by nature, negates uninspired leadership with the solution of apathy.  Apathy, therefore, is not a problem, but a solution to uninspired leadership. It is an apathetic membership which should inspire the leaders to sanctify themselves and obtain the powers, gifts and fruits of the Spirit with which to minister in righteousness among the Lord’s people.  Only the Spirit can cure apathy, or enliven a sleepy body.

How to encourage leadership to repent: inspired, intentional apathy

If your ward or stake leaders are uninspired and you notice that your ward or stake is full of apathetic members, the answer is not to fight them or call them to repentance.  The Lord will take care of His leaders and will chastise them in His own due time.  It is not the duty of the membership to steady the ark.  We members did not call them, although we did sustain them through our vote. And that (sustaining) is the key.

Sustain inspired leaders and withdraw support from uninspired leaders

The proper, scriptural way that the Lord has set up whereby membership can “modify the misbehavior of the leadership” is by withdrawing a sustaining vote.  Most people feel that once a vote is cast, it must remain cast until the end of the term of office.  The election of California Governor Schwarzenegger should have put an end to that line of thinking.  Just as the Lord giveth and taketh away, so the membership has the power to sustain and withdraw support.

I might suggest a couple of important things to keep in mind when withdrawing support from an uninspired leader.  First, this is not a way to punish him, but to encourage him to sanctify himself so that he may again have your support.  And second, keep firmly in mind the difference between what are the commandments of God and the counsels or petitions of an uninspired man.  As long as you continue to keep the commandments of God, you will remain on safe ground.

For example, having entered baptism and made a covenant with God, we are to partake of the sacrament each week.  So, not attending a ward that has an uninspired bishop is not an option.  However, just attending the portion in which the sacrament is passed, partaking and then skipping the rest of the meeting, might be.  On my mission, many baptized members did just that, as they had covenanted to partake of the sacrament each week, not listen to every talk given in that meeting.

During sustaining votes, especial care might be taken as to who you vote for, or even if you vote at all.  (See Is our procedure for sustaining a rubberstamp?)  Just as there are many ways to sustain a leader, there are probably as many ways to withhold support.

Inspired apathy is a solution

Inspired apathy can be a great tool in the hands of those who wield it with a proper understanding of its effect on leadership.  Although apathy is often seen as a thing to be avoided, a bad thing, it can be a means of generating humble leaders who are guided by the Holy Ghost and not just by their egos.

Next Common Consent article: The voice of the people signifies a majority

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Monson and his constipated physics redux; or, how electric gravity makes hollow earthers happy


I’ve mentioned Milton W. Monson and his curious book once before on this blog, but without really explaining its impact on me.  Whatever you think of him, after reading the book, it is hard to get it out of your mind.  A look at the reactions to it by the physics boys who’ve actually read it shows that although most give it a bad review (as in bad physics and bad mathematics), they all concede that the book is unforgettable.  How could it not be?  His was the first book, that I know of, that attempted to tackle physics using algebra alone, as well as to unite the sciences.  Plus, it was really funny.

I was one of the few individuals (actually, I don’t know the precise number of individuals) who contacted the author after reading the book.  It was then that I learned that he sent out S.T.R.R.I.P. Tease bulletins to those who contacted him, free of charge.  (S.T.R.R.I.P. = Society To Restore Rationalism In Physics, or something to that effect.  Yes, he was a dirty old man.)  The S.T.R.R.I.P. Tease bulletins were further physics lessons that he had not included in his book.

Monson was/is (I don’t know if he is still alive) an atheist and dedicated an entire chapter to debunking religion, but despite that, I had to send him some emails concerning the similarities I found in modern revelations with the physics he was proposing.  Needless to say, finding a spiritual counterpart in his theory didn’t make him very happy and he tried to convince me of the errors of my ways.  I had fun corresponding with him and I think it was fun for him, too, as he was getting up there in age and most people just thought of him as “old Monson with the crazy space balls.”  (Space balls was a theory he invented to help explain physics phenomena.)

Monson was set in his irreligious ways, and accepted a great deal of mainstream science, while attempting to debunk the rest that he felt did not hold up to rational, physics scrutiny.  He either wasn’t aware of the plasma scientists and their experiments, or chose not to consider their results in his model of the Universe.  I believe that he simply didn’t know about it.  I also believe that if he had known about it, he probably would not have liked it, as the discoveries plasma scientists make tend to confirm the scriptures, and he, being an atheist, probably would not have liked that very much.  Also, as he tended to ridicule everything he felt was wrong, if plasma science was available to him, and he thought it was erroneous, it probably would have gotten a mention in his book.

Let me just say here and now to Monson, if you are still alive: I thoroughly enjoyed your book and am glad it was written, both for its witticisms and its portrayals of new concepts. And if he is not alive, then to his son and any other surviving family members: Your departed relative made an impression for the better upon at least one individual on this planet.  I hope one day someone takes up and finishes his foundational work.

Physics Is Constipated (Intellectually That Is)

That is the title of Monson’s book.  Even if the content was horrendous, the title alone would be hard to forget.  To his credit, though, it was engaging and fun.  Heck, even the front and back cover artwork and text were thought-provoking.  But it has been many years since I last read it.  So, what was my surprise when along comes an electrical theorist, Wallace Thornhill, proposing an electric gravity model in an electric universe and using words that seemingly conveyed the same types of thoughts as Monson?

Here is Thornhill’s shortened, but nevertheless interesting paper:

Electric Gravity in an Electric Universe

Gravity, Einstein and Scientific Saints

Gravity is the most familiar force. We are subject to it every day of our lives. Newton gave us his ‘law of gravity,’ which describes its effect but doesn’t explain it. “I frame no hypotheses,” he wrote.  (Thornhill, first paragraph of Electric Gravity in an Electric Universe.)

Unlike Newton, Monson actually attempted to explain gravity.  And his explanation, using only two material types,  which he called structured space and structured matter, made pretty darn good sense.  Thornhill seems to build upon this Monsonian base—has he read Monson’s book?—, including the all-important electrical connection.

Einstein wasn’t so prudent when he introduced his “postulates.”  Unfortunately, his unreal geometry doesn’t explain gravity either. The usual demonstration using heavy steel balls on a rubber sheet to represent ‘gravity wells’ relies on gravity as its own explanation!  (Thornhill, first paragraph of Electric Gravity in an Electric Universe.)

Thornhill throughout this article does the same thing Monson did: show the Einsteinian age as the death of rational physics.  Monson is a bit harsher in his denunciation of Einstein, whereas Thornhill at least gives Einstein the benefit of doubting his own words:

How has this situation arisen? In the 20th century technology perfected wireless communication and computers and got man into space, while fundamental science fell deeper into a ‘black hole’ of complication, illogicality and metaphysics. I consider the principal cause has been the usurping, since Einstein, of natural philosophy and physics by theoretical mathematicians. Meanwhile Einstein, perhaps to his credit, remained sceptical of his own work. (Thornhill, 6th paragraph of Electric Gravity in an Electric Universe, emphasis mine.)

Monson spoke of the scientific community with disdain as being made up of “scientific saints” and “scientific priests.”  In this paper, Thornhill quotes Mike Disney in his footnotes as saying:

The most unhealthy aspect of cosmology is its unspoken parallel with religion. Both deal with big but probably unanswerable questions. The rapt audience, the media exposure, the big book-sale, tempt priests and rogues, as well as the gullible, like no other subject in science.

The Aether and the Michelson-Morley Experiment

Monson was a believer in the Aether.  He rejected the concept that space was filled with nothing.  In his view, there were but two elements that made up the entire Universe: structured space and structured matter and the interaction between these two elements as they competed for the same volume of space accounted for all of the seen and unseen energy manifestations around us.  He believed in simplification as the key to the promulgation of the sciences among the masses.  The structured space was the motive element whereas the sctructured matter was basically just pushed around.  Each element was completely opposite in its qualities.  For example, one could be compressed and deformed like a hollow balloon whereas the other was a dense ball of super hard, indestructible stuff.  There was no volume of space that was not occupied by either structured space or structured matter.

Sound familiar?  When I brought to his attention Lehi’s writings of that which acts and that which is acted upon (see 2 Ne. 2: 13-14) or the Lord’s revelations in the Doctrine and Covenants about the Light of Christ filling the immensity of space (see D&C 88: 12), etc., he wasn’t too happy, but I was pleased to see that he had come to these conclusions on his own, independent of the word of God, merely by observing nature.

Monson’s major problem was the Michelson-Morley experiment, which had apparently failed to detect the aether.  His solution was a modification to that experiment that, in his estimation, would have shown that the aether does, in fact, exist.  (He believed that the experiment failed because the experimenters didn’t know what to look for.)  At any rate, as the experiment had been discredited as a failure, any newbie (such as Monson) contending that the aether was real was laughed at as a crackpot.

Thornhill in this paper brings up the same Michelson-Morley experiment, adding, though, that Dayton Miller repeated the experiment and found an aether drift! Monson, apparently, was not aware of that fact, as Miller was written out of the text books, which would have helped his case immensely.

Structure, structure, everywhere

As stated above, Monson believed the Universe was composed of structured material of two types.  Thornhill, likewise, addresses the Universe as structured, even taking the electron and breaking it down into smaller structures called subtrons.

Gravity, Electromagnetism and Inertia

Both men tie gravity, electromagnetism and inertia to the same common source: the aether.  Whereas Monson contended that the aether “deformed balloons” pushed back at structured matter to produce gravity, Thornhill explains that the minute, structural, electric dipoles align in one direction to produce gravity.  In either case, all manifestation of any type is explained from a single source.

Gravity is a Variable

Both Monson and Thornhill come to the same conclusion: gravity varies depending upon the aether environment. Monson described the aether environment in terms of compression and torsion and Thornhill describes it in terms of charge and electricity.

The speed of light and gravity

Both men also address the near instantaneous speed of gravity, no matter how far the distances, and the slowness of light.  Both Monson and Thornhill address the e=mc2 equation, including when the speed of light is put into the equation.  Neither man gets time slowing down or Alice in Wonderland Effects.  Everything remains based in reality and rationalism.  However, Monson, again, explains things using compression and torsion, while Thornhill explains it in electrical terms.  Both men, though, make sense.

Mass

Monson and Thornhill both explain mass in terms of the aether environment and not as “quantity of matter.”  As a result, this opens up the possibility that mainstream science’s expectation of fluffy, spongy or hollow bodies could turn out to be solid and dense while the expectation of solid and dense bodies could turn out to be hollow or spongy.

Thornhill, in fact, draws from recent cometary and asteroid evidence, which should have shown fluffy snowballs (the comets) but instead showed apparently dense rocks, suggesting that our models—of what type of a body ought to produce the gravitational field were are seeing—are inaccurate.  Monson, whose book was written in the 1980’s, never had this astronomical data to work from.

Electric Gravity and Hollow Planets

Electric, or aether-generated gravity opens up the very real possibility of the planets being hollow.  The current thoughts on gravity, that it requires a certain amount of matter to have a certain amount of gravity, preclude many planets from being hollow.  They must be solid in order to account for the amount of gravity detected.  So, if gravity is shown to have an electric connection, the main obstacle to hollow planets vanishes altogether.

Although Monson never intended to promote the hollow earth theory, his model could be equally applied to both solid and hollow planets, without destroying it (the model).  Likewise, Thornhill’s model is also consistent with hollow spheres or structures, both on the subatomic level and on the planetary or galactic scale.  The electric universe theorists usually do not categorically state that their model favors a hollow planets scenario, as they are marginalized by the mainstream scientists enough, as it is, but as one reads more and more of their findings, it becomes apparent that it does.

Black holes

The major break between Monson and Thornhill is their opinion of black holes.  Whereas Monson accepted that black holes do, in fact, exist, Thornhill and the other plasma scientists think it’s just a mathematical invention, an imaginary device that has no counterpart in the real world.  But, again, Monson didn’t have the plasma data to work with.  If he had, he might have discarded the notion of black holes, too.

LDS Scientists: Pay Attention

The plasma theorists and scientists are on the cutting edge.  Despite being largely ignored by the mainstream, they are forging ahead and breaking new ground.  It would be to our benefit (as an LDS community) to pay attention to their findings.  The day may come that we will have to rebuild society.  If and when that happens, a proper understanding of all physics findings will be needed to correct the errors perpetuated by the current scientific community, your non-LDS peers, otherwise we LDS will be no better off or no more enlightened than any other people on the planet, regardless of the gospel knowledge we possess.  The electrical connection may be the most important of all.

The keys to correcting the errors are the scientific anomalies, which invalidate many theories.  Often we don’t hear about these anomalies.  They are briefly reported and then swept under the rug.  Out of sight, out of mind and the current popular scientific theory remains intact.  Inform yourself about the anomalies. Bring them up, focus on them and seek to correct the errors.  A knowledge of the plasma research will help as that field of research addresses anomalies.

Next Plasma Theology article: Plasma Rods: A Theoretical Concept

Previous Plasma Theology article: The hollow earth theory, the plasma model and Mormon theology

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50,000 hits and LDS Anarchy stats


As this blog quickly approaches 50,000 hits, I thought I’d inform the dear readers of some of the current statistical numbers.

(Now, keep in mind that the following numbers are just page hits. WordPress doesn’t tell me how many unique visitors the blog gets.)

Top Ten Page Views of All Time

Joseph Smith’s Daguerreotype—An Appeal for Help (4,312 views)

How I get out of jury duty (1,591 views)

About (1,453 views)

The hollow earth theory, the plasma model and Mormon theology (1,329 views)

Why do LDS still circumcise their boys? (1,239 views)

Lakota independence—prophecy starting to be fulfilled (861 views)

Contributors (830 views)

What did Jesus Christ look like? (792 views)

Strong drinks, mild drinks, hot drinks, wine, etc. (698 views)

Book of Mormon Anarchy (569 views)

Busiest Day Ever

Thursday, March 27th, 2008 (914 views)

Busiest Week Ever

13th week of 2008 (2,559 views)

Busiest Month Ever

August 2008 (7,117 views and still growing)

Top Ten Search Engine Terms of All Time

anarchy (1,066)

how to get out of jury duty (476)

joseph smith (275)

getting out of jury duty (240)

lakota independence (226)

get out of jury duty (132)

joseph smith daguerreotype (117)

lds anarchy (114)

joseph smith iii (114)

strong drinks (87)

Top Blog Aggregator Referrer

MormonBlogs.org (232 referrals)

Top Link Clicked (away from the LDS Anarchy Blog)

Read and Post Patriarchal Blessings Anonymously (154 clicks)

Number of Incoming Blog Links ( blogs linking to the LDS Anarchy Blog)

16

The stats show that each month more and more people are viewing the LDS Anarchy blog.  The How I get out of jury duty post, in particular, is bringing a lot of new people here.  For example, in the last 30 days, that post got 1,070 views, whereas the second most viewed post in the same time period was The hollow earth theory, the plasma model and Mormon theology, with 234 views.

The audience still seems to be primarily LDS, which is the group I addresss my remarks to, but there appears to be a lot of lurkers and probably a good portion of them are non-LDS.  I may try a few posts directed at non-LDS to see if anyone outside of the LDS community is listening to this blog.

All-in-all, the numbers look encouraging and the feedback I’ve gotten from the comments sections is more than I anticipated.  The blog appears to be growing in a healthy manner.  It’s taken about 10 months to get to the 50,000 mark.  I expect the blog to reach the 100,000 mark in much less time.

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If voting could change things, it would be illegal


We interrupt this program for the following (anti-)political message.

Now that the Olympic games are over, we are being inundated with press about the Democratic National Convention, the nomination of Barak Obama and the coming election, all of which preps us for our “civic duty” of voting.

For most, the questions are: What candidates should I vote for?  What initiatives should I vote for?  But these questions presuppose that you should vote.

To Vote or Not To Vote: THAT Is the Question

You can go to any political party, or to anyone who believes in voting, to learn why you should vote.  But where do you go to learn why you should not vote? Well, I’m glad you asked.  Your friendly, neighborhood LDS Anarchist will point you in the right direction:

Non-Voting Archive

To give you a taste of the many reasons against voting found in the non-voting archive, here is an excerpt of an essay by Lysander Spooner entitled, Against Woman Suffrage:

Women are human beings, and consequently have all the natural rights that any human beings can have. They have just as good a right to make laws as men have, and no better; AND THAT IS JUST NO RIGHT AT ALL. No human being, nor any number of human beings, have any right to make laws, and compel other human beings to obey them. To say that they have is to say that they are the masters and owners of those of whom they require such obedience.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.

Next Anarchism/Anarchy article: The Root Cause of the Current Financial (Monetary) Crisis and Its Solution

Previous Anarchism/Anarchy article: Anarchy in Education

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Scriptural Discussion #16: David and Solomon


DAVID AND SOLOMON

Behold, David and Solomon truly had many wives and concubines, which thing was abominable before me, saith the Lord. (Jacob 2: 24)

David also received many wives and concubines, and also Solomon and Moses my servants, as also many others of my servants, from the beginning of creation until this time; and in nothing did they sin save in those things which they received not of me.  David’s wives and concubines were given unto him of me, by the hand of Nathan, my servant, and others of the prophets who had the keys of this power; and in none of these things did he sin against me save in the case of Uriah and his wife; and, therefore he hath fallen from his exaltation, and received his portion; and he shall not inherit them out of the world, for I gave them unto another, saith the Lord.  (D&C 132: 38-39)

Discuss.

Previous Scriptural Discussion: #15 ABORTION

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Anarchy in Education


My wife and I started homeschooling our children nearly from the get-go.  Only our eldest child has ever experienced public school.  She protested, at first, but as the years went by, she came to realize that home school was better than public school.  Any time she gave us grief, the threat (in jest) that was held over her head was that we’d put her back in public school.

At first, we did the best we could with the material we could get our hands on.  I ended up buying a course for $350 that we hardly used, at all.  It contained a lot of patriotic stuff, meaning government propaganda, and me being the anarchist that I am, let’s just say that that didn’t sit too well with me.  We used more stuff from the library and used bookstores than from that course.

Homeschooling also took up a lot of our time, both in preparation and in teaching.  Often, my wife worried that we’d get to a subject in which we weren’t experts and that the children would be taught incorrectly by us.  But the benefit of being able to also teach them character education and remove the false ideas taught in public school outweighed her concerns.  All in all, it was still better than public school.

One of the things I didn’t like about the pre-made course was that it wasn’t sufficient for all of our children, for all of their years of schooling.  I’d have to keep buying material for each child for each year of their lives.  The dollars were going to add up, but the financial sacrifice still seemed worth it.

The Robinson Curriculum

Not long after we began homeschooling, I came across an article that mentioned the Robinson Curriculum, an autodidactic program for K-12.  I could use it for all of our children.  It was one single purchase: I needed the course of CD-ROMs, a computer (which I had), a good printer (one-time purchase), the Saxon Math books (one-time purchase), printer paper (cheap) and printer ink (cheap).  With these supplies, all of my children could get an outstanding education with very little parental involvement.  It required about 15 minutes of parent time a day.  The children just taught themselves using the material.  Needless to say, I was intrigued.

After visiting the Robinson Curriculum web site, reading, listening to and watching all the media that is on it, I decided that the Robinson Curriculum would be perfect for our family.  We made the required purchases and haven’t looked back since.

Since starting the course, we’ve noticed that the children are learning to think for themselves, to figure things out for themselves and to take initiative.  As no one is teaching them anymore, they have no one to blame for their ignorance except themselves.  Because each child is different, they learn at their own pace, according to their maturity level and desires for learning.  The mentally quick children with strong desires for learning gobble up the information, the slower ones take longer, but each eventually learns the information and does so without reliance upon a teacher or each other.  If asked, “Who taught you this?” each one could respond, “No one did.  I taught myself.”

The Robinson Curriculum is a complete course, so my wife and I no longer need to worry about teaching subjects that we, ourselves, are weak in.  The children get taught out of books written by experts in those fields.  They literally get taught by the best.

The only thing required of the parents is to get each child to the point where they can read, write and do the arithmetic tables: addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.  Most parents are capable of teaching their children these things, if they, the parents, already know how to read, write and do simple arithmetic. Once a child knows these fundamentals, they can start the Robinson Curriculum with no further input from the parents.  Parental involvement after that is just to make sure they are engaged in their work (good study habits) and to focus on the one thing parents can excel at: character education.

The Robinson Curriculum allows a parent to incorporate other material, as they see fit, into the course, or to subtract material that is deemed unhelpful or unneeded.  However, the course alone is complete and no modification is necessary, so even without any changes, a child who undergoes the entire curriculum will have an exceptional and well-rounded education.

A Decentralized Course

The Robinson Curriculum is better than other homeschooling courses in that it is based upon truly anarchic principles.  The child alone must teach himself.  There is no reliance upon Mommy or Daddy.  There is no reliance upon other students.  There is no cheating possible.  It instills confidence from the get-go.  Each book that is read in the course must be analyzed by the child and its meaning figured out.  Dictionaries and encyclopedias must be consulted.  It is supremely individualistic in that the child comes to his own conclusion concerning the information coming in, without any interpretation from the parents or teachers.  This makes for highly critical thinking.  And as the course is finished, the child can now be placed into high stress situations, such as the university, without being overwhelmed, without having to hold a parent’s or teacher’s hand, with the ability to learn whatever material is presented.  Why?  Because it no longer depends upon the instructor’s ability to instruct.  The child learns on his own.  Put the information before the child, and he will learn it, because he now knows how to learn.  This is the beauty of the Robinson Curriculum.

Such supremely decentralized teaching can only create superior intellects, as the brain is engaged more than in other courses, which rely upon a teacher telling a student what the meaning of something is, instead of the students figuring it out for themselves.  As long as the material is superior, decentralized, anarchic self-education will always produce greater intellects.  It is my estimation that the Robinson Curriculum contains just such material.

On the sidebar of this blog, under Education, you’ll find a link to the Robinson Curriculum web site.  You can also just click below to go there now:

www.robinsoncurriculum.com

Additionally, I’m including links to Lew Rockwell dot com articles that talk of this course.  I invite all public, private, and home schooling parents to look into the Robinson Curriculum for yourselves.  I especially invite all anarchist parents everywhere who are still raising children to consider this course as the anarchy-based education solution you’ve been looking for.

Why Home Schools Are Superior to Private Schools by Gary North

Destroying Your Child To Save a Buck by Gary North

Quality Time vs. Quality Guilt by Gary North

Must Your Children Run the Collegiate Gauntlet? by Gary North

This Advice Might Save Your Life: Don’t Bring Ayn Rand to a Gun Fight by Greg Perry

The Best One-Shot Investment on Earth by Gary North

America’s Bread and Circuses—Schools and Jails by Greg Perry

Spreading Anarchy through Education

For those who wish a peaceful means of spreading anarchy throughout society, consider the Robinson Curriculum as a powerful tool towards that end.  The wide-spread promotion and use of this course will unplug entire families from state-propaganda machines (public schools).  If there are those who really want to turn the tide against socialistic education (public and private schools), a United Effort could be organized with the express purpose of pooling financial resources and equipping families with the Robinson Curriculum.

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Previous Anarchism/Anarchy article: Anarchy in action: congregational nullification

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Anarchy in action: congregational nullification


Jury Nullification

Jury nullification means making a law void by jury decision, in other words “the process whereby a jury in a criminal case effectively nullifies a law by acquitting a defendant regardless of the weight of evidence against him or her.”

Jury nullification is more specifically any rendering of a verdict by a trial jury, acquitting a criminal defendant despite the defendant’s violation of the letter of the law. This verdict need not disagree with the instructions by the judge concerning what the law is, but may disagree with an instruction, if given by the judge, that the jury is required to apply the law to the defendant if certain facts are found.

Although a jury’s refusal relates only to the particular case before it, if a pattern of such verdicts develops in response to repeated attempts to prosecute a statutory offense, it can have the practical effect of disabling the enforcement of the statute. “Jury nullification” is thus a means for the people to express opposition to an unpopular legislative enactment.

The jury system was established because it was felt that a panel of citizens, drawn at random from the community, and serving for too short a time to be corrupted, would be more likely to render a just verdict, through judging both the accused and the law, than officials who may be unduly influenced to follow merely the established law. Jury nullification is a reminder that the right to trial by one’s peers affords the public an opportunity to take a dissenting view about the justness of a statute or official practices.

(Taken from the Jury Nullification entry of the Wikipedia. See the entire entry for more information.)

Jury nullification occurs when a jury judges both the facts of a case and the law it is based upon. In modern times it doesn’t occur very often, perhaps because juries are not aware that they have this common law right or power due to modern judges not informing them of the entire jurisdiction of a jury. In fact, judges often do the opposite and give them instructions that they must apply the law. However, the truth is that juries do have this power regardless of what a corrupt judge may say.

Congregational Juries

Our system of church government consists of judges, courts and councils, with witnesses and advocacy, but apparently without juries. However, as all appointments/callings must be approved by the congregation through common consent vote before an appointment/calling is solidified, in reality and practice the congregational members are the juries of the church.

Again, any calling in the church needs to be ratified by the congregational jury. A name is read and a call to ratify is made to the members, who raise their hands in approbation or in opposition, or who do not raise their hands, at all. A count is made and if the voice of the people (the majority) is for the appointment, it goes through. If the voice of the people is against it, it does not go through. In this way the congregational jury renders a verdict of their approval or disapproval of the various appointments/callings. We call this vote sustaining. Nothing in the church happens, nor can happen, without a sustaining vote of the members of the congregation, as that would be tyranny and a usurpation of powers, because all things must be done with the consent of the congregation.

Congregational Nullification

There is, however, another way that the congregational jury renders a verdict. Sometimes policies or instructions are handed out to the members from their leaders without taking a vote. For example, recent First Presidency letters read in sacrament meeting contained instructions to the members concerning the passage of a constitutional amendment on marriage (for California saints) and sacrament meeting behavior, specifically, not using visual aids or asking the congregation to turn to a scripture while giving a talk. These instructions are similar to those received by trial juries from the presiding judge concerning how they are to apply the law to the case. In both instances, neither jury is instructed that they can pass judgment upon the judge’s instructions and discard them if wisdom so dictates.

Many saints get offended when instructions they feel are overbearing or tyrannical come down from their leaders. To prove their point, they’ll sometimes take actions that end up pitting the church against them, such as taking a public stand against the church. This is not the wisest course to take and may lead to their being disfellowshipped, excommunicated or even them just leaving on their own.

The Lord has given us the means to nip all tyranny in His church in the bud via the law of common consent. Just as trial jury nullification exists as a common law right, it also exists as a right of the congregational juries. Simply ignoring all instructions deemed to be unjust, unwise, overbearing, tyrannical or humiliating nullifies the instructions. End of story.

Most instructions given today by leaders are called “counsel.” When members are asked to do something, usually that is the very word used: ask. Anybody can ask anything they want of you. Asking you to do or not to do something does not rob you of your agency. It also does not obligate you to do the thing asked. Like trial juries, congregational juries have the choice to obey instructions received by them from the leaders without another thought, or they can render the instructions null and void by ignoring them.

Anarchy in Action

Both congregational nullification and the raising of the hands in approval/disapproval during a sustaining vote is anarchy in action. Ultimately, always, the people decide all matters of the church. The leaders can do nothing without the consent of the people.

Taking the two examples given above, for those saints who agree with the First Presidency letter on the marriage bill, they can sustain the letter’s instructions by donating time, means and effort to that cause. For those saints who disagree with the letter’s instructions, they can ignore the petition entirely and donate no time, means or effort to it. Just as during sustaining votes, members do not campaign other members to sway votes in favor of or against particular church callings, campaigning need not occur for non-voting uses of the law of common consent. Everything remains peaceful, ordered and anarchic, each man, woman and child of the church casting a verdict on the instructions by their actions.

In the second instance mentioned above, congregational nullification can also occur, should the people think the instructions are unneccessary or unjust. Or, congregational ratification can occur should the people think the instructions are wise and timely. All that is necessary is that each speaker either obey the instructions and stop using visual aids or asking the audience to open their scriptures, or disregard the instructions and use visual aids and ask the congregation to turn to such-and-such a verse.

The bishop or other leaders may attempt to correct a single person who ignores counsel or instruction, but if that person continues to ignore the counsel, or if more than one person ignores the counsel and it becomes apparent that the congregation has passed a verdict against the counsel, by ignoring it, then congregational nullification has occurred and that counsel is now null and void. There is nothing a leader can do with a group of people who refuse to ratify an instruction by obedience to it.

In my own experience, eventually even the most power-tripping leaders will throw up their hands in frustration because peaceful, ordered, anarchic congregational nullification cannot be stopped. No one can be tried for ignoring counsel or petitions. There is no law against it in the church. There are only laws against sin.

Use of Common Consent Stops Tyranny

Jury nullification drives leaders up the wall with frustration, as it limits their power and control over a congregation, but it is one of the means the Lord has set up to stop tyranny in His church. Used as a proper check to usurpation of power, it properly balances the church and puts all saints, leaders and members alike, on equal ground.

So, the next time you receive instructions from your religious leaders you do not agree with, even after prayer and fasting, instead of publicly fighting them and becoming an apostate, instead of striving to get other members in your camp and pit member against member or member against leader, or instead of trying to win the leader over to your cause (which never works), just apply the principle of congregational nullification and ignore the instructions.

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Previous Anarchism/Anarchy article: The dissolution of the corporate LDS Church via “gay marriage”

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Previous Common Consent article: Power of the Law of Common Consent

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