Satan may have turtles all the way down but God has fathers' light and knowledge all the way up.
"I want to reason a little on this subject; I learned it by translating the papyrus which is now in my house. I learned a testimony concerning Abraham, and he reasoned concerning the God of Heaven; in order to do that said he,— ‘suppose we have two facts, that supposes another fact may exist; two men on the earth, one wiser than the other, would logically shew that another who is wiser than the wisest may exist. Intelligencies exist one above another, so that there is no end to them.’ If Abraham reasoned thus— if Jesus Christ was the son of God, and John discovered that God the Father of Jesus Christ had a Father, you may suppose that he had a Father also. Where was there ever a son without a father? and where was there ever a father without first being a son? Whenever did a tree or anything spring into existence without a progenitor? And every thing comes in this way. Paul says that which is earthly is in the likeness of that which is Heavenly; hence if Jesus had a father, can we not believe that he had a father also? I despise the idea of being scared to death at such doctrine, for the bible is full of it. I want you all to pay particular attention to what I am saying. Jesus [HC 6:476] said that the Father wrought precisely in the same way as his Father had done before <him>— as the Father had done before, he laid down his life and took it up same as his Father had done before; he did as he was sent, to lay down his life and take it up again, and then was committed unto him the Keys &c. I know it is good reasoning. “I have reason to think that the church is being purged; I saw Satan fall from Heaven, and the way they ran was a caution. All these are wonders, and marvelous in our eyes in these last days. So long as men are under the law of God they have no fears— they do not scare themselves. “I want to stick to my text to shew that when men open their lips against these truths they do not injure me, but injure themselves. To the law and to the testimony; for these principles are poured out all over the scriptures. When things that are of the greatest importance are passed over by weak minded men without even a thought, I want to see truth in all its bearings, and hug it to my bosom." https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/history-1838-1856-volume-f-1-1-may-1844-8-august-1844/109
Basically, if you criticize the concept of a multilevel marketing of infinite heavenly fathers you are just hurting yourself.
I don't know the Mormonism teaches this but unless Smith was speaking as a human instead of as a god this would be a core doctrinal concept being expounded by their founding prophet.
"I want you all to pay particular attention to what I am saying. Jesus [HC 6:476] said that the Father wrought precisely in the same way as his Father had done before <him>— as the Father had done before, he laid down his life and took it up same as his Father had done before; he did as he was sent, to lay down his life and take it up again, and then was committed unto him the Keys &c. I know it is good reasoning."
Translation = Zombies hold the keys to the kingdom.
I've thought about this a lot over the years and I believe it's a fantasy arising from JS's grandiose and damaged psyche.
Back when I was TBM and pouring through the JS and BY era history, I came across Adam-God. This was in my pre-endowment stage so I hadn't been overtly taught a lot about exaltation. My Mormon mentors were still keeping a sort of "Santa" woo woo mystique for me, lots of how oh, the ultimate truth is so wonderful but shhhhh, we mustn't spoil anything by talking in the nasty mundane world about it. Yet cult-sanctioned texts mentioned the 'As man is..." couplet and with the whole three kingdoms thing so I put the idea together myself that we humans are little tadpoles (godpoles?) in this world and if we're good, we get to morph into...Bullgods?
I read everything cult-approved I could find pertinent to this subject that I could get my hands on because none of my ward buddies would outright say "yes, that's the deal". I did come across plenty of exegesis on the papyri, various historical texts and GA conference transcripts that indicated that by *Mormon* logic it must follow that it's turtles all the way up.
I just thought ooh, I will grow creative powers. Neat. Maybe I can make some really pretty stuff the God will like. I almost made sense from an evolutionary point of view, if souls are eternal.
I wasn't thinking it all the way through, really. At that point in life I had just been married and was prepping for the first kid, working full-time, and dealing with the realization that my MIL was exceedingly...peculiar...(to be gracious) and honestly, I was still deeply afraid my father would decide I couldn't be trusted not to disclose what he'd been doing to me all my life and that I might have an "accident", so I was unusually preoccupied with death and the afterlife for an early 20-something. In truth, I was very vulnerable to manipulation, both external and internal. I was more than just a wee bit...peculiar...myself, but I didn't know it. I had a lot on my plate and who doesn't, deep down, want superpowers and a whole lot of control?
So I'm standing in the shower one day contemplating the whole "we're going to be gods" and the "turtles all the way up" thing and this thought just popped into my mind. If there are wars in heaven and we are all potential gods, and even God Elohim has his own Father God...can Elohim be overthrown? Or destroyed even? Could it have already even happened, and that's why things like the Holocaust happened? Or if God wasn't gone, shouldn't God be punished for allowing things like that? Did other Gods treat their children better?
The instant I thought this stuff I felt so guilty. I though I'd been talking in my head with Stan, or worse, I was just like him! What kind of ungrateful, horrid, evil person would ever even think of such a monstrous set of ideas? What was I thinking, that I could do better as a Goddess someday? What disgusting pride! I was such a wicked thing!
I prayed for forgiveness, fasted every other day for a month, and took ice cold showers to punish myself for the mere thought.
Fast forward many, many moons. I'm out of the cult. I got treatment for my mental illness and trauma. I'm older and wiser, and better educated. I understand human psychology much better now, including my pet interest, Cluster B personality disorders.
I believe JS was highly narcissistic and possibly meets criteria for Antisocial Personality Disorder, and a person like this would be exactly the person to entertain, teach, and promote the idea of a Godly hierarchy because he had absolute confidence that he could climb that food chain. He had a need to dominate and control others that was likely insatiable, because he also had a shallow personhood that needed constant supply of reassurance. What could be more reassuring than eventually becoming the God of Gods?
It's all about wanting and needing power and control, fantasies of limitless and irresistible force to be used against the narcissist's terrified certainty that other minds, other wills, can never be anything other than a threat unless they are fully subordinated down to their core selves.
I believe JS's ideas on "Eternal Progression" were a mix of Swedenborgian ideas that recombined with his own fundamentally broken personality, and that he didn't view attaining godhood as a blissful and benevolent drift towards infinite peace and that creation thereafter would arise from love. I think he viewed it as a magical fraternity, a secret handshake club he could claw his way to the top in, and further creation entailed lots of great sex with all the females resulting in worlds full of worshippers over whom he had complete life-and-death control of.
I see no reason why he would have thought he should stop at being the newest turtle.
If you think about it it, it's a shallow aspiration if one really does have limitless possibilities to choose from and unfettered dominion over reality. It's immature, self-aggrandizing, shortsighted and deeply ignorant. It's just the early 19th Century American backwater world JS grew up in, put into some magical Xerox and set to enlarge 250%. It shows spectacular lack of imagination. L. Ron Hubbard has since stomped JS utterly in that category. But it fits JS's profile. Shallow, unimaginative drivel is exactly what goes on between a narcissist's ears most of the time.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/13/2020 02:08PM by ptbarnum.
They are in direct opposition to their founder but this isn't the first time they spin this excuse. Smith never once alluded to inspiration over actual experiential "facts." No pretend angels with drawn swords for him.
Another version of “I’m right and if you don’t like it Screw You”. Joseph Smith had the gift of persuasion. He could have done so much good in the world. Instead of leaving behind a curse. I suppose since farm work tied up Joe Senior most of the time, Lucy Mack Smith could be most to blame. They were a pair.
Elder Berry Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > "I want to reason a little on this subject; I > learned it by translating the papyrus which is now > in my house. I learned a testimony concerning > Abraham, and he reasoned concerning the God of > Heaven; in order to do that said he,— ‘suppose > we have two facts, that supposes another fact may > exist; two men on the earth, one wiser than the > other, would logically shew that another who is > wiser than the wisest may exist.
Those Mormons who like to point out that Joseph was "uneducated" (he wasn't, really, when compared to typical Americans of his day) should be pointing to this passage as indicative of his lack of critical thinking skills.
Leaving aside the whole issue of his "translation" that wasn't for a moment--he states that it is "logical" that if there are two men, one wiser than the other, there must be a third who is even wiser, or that if Jesus has a Father, he must have a Father too. This is not logical; it is akin to stating that, if we see parked here a large passenger jumbo jet and another that is even larger, somewhere in the world there must be an even larger passenger jumbo jet. If one of the jets you're looking at is an A380, then that is not true. Similarly, it does not follow that two wise men implies the existence of a third, or that the existence of two facts implies the existence of a third. It doesn't imply anything at all.
"Reasoning" that Jesus has a Father does not imply that there is another Father and on up. Most Christians, in fact, "reason" exactly the opposite--Jesus has a Father, and that's it.