Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Indoctrination of Mormon Beliefs

The Mormon take on Indians is very interesting to me, but what I find most fascinating is the relationship the Mormons have with Native Americans. I find the story of how the Lamanites and Nephites came into America a bit farfetched; I am a bit dubious of anyone sailing across the Atlantic Ocean in 600 BC. But that’s beside the point, I am not trying to make this into a scientific argument of why The Book of Mormon is a bit impractical. But in this blog post, I am trying to make a finer connection with the relationship Mormons have with the Native Americans and why there is so much resentment between the two groups. After reading the chapter, “The Book of Mormon,” I came to conclude from this is that Mormons established themselves in Native American territory and took their land for themselves, competed for hunting territory, took other valuable resources and felt the need to convert non-believers. Naturally the Indians would rebel and use violence towards the Mormons to try and get their point across. With persistence and “the will of God” the Mormons firmly believe the Indians must “lay down [their] weapons of war, and delight no more in the shedding o blood, and take them not again, save it be that God shall command [them]”. Through this, the Mormons are able to indoctrinate their own set of beliefs and principals into Native American culture. In many ways, the Mormons have stripped everything from the Indians and instilled their own set of beliefs and “God shall command” them in the name of Jesus Christ. 

1 comment:

  1. I definitely agree with the way you discuss The Book of Mormon's dealings with Native Americans. The way that the Nephites establish themselves in Native American territory like you say, and through all the historically similar methods of extermination of the Native Americans, it seems to me the Book of Mormon is almost a documentary in a way of European ravages to Native Americans. While this might be reading a bit far into the book, it certainly makes sense in context. Naturally, as you say, Native Americans would want to rebel against this invasion of their homes, and this sets the stage for many Native American conflicts, especially those in upstate New York where Smith himself came of age.