Saturday, October 19, 2019

What is Our Real History?

“There are two ways to be fooled.
 One is to believe what isn’t true;
 the other is to refuse to believe what is true.”1

[O]ur own individual point of view makes a great difference to how we see things.2
Which raises the quandary footnoted (being #10) in a blog post of January 16, 2016.3 The quandary? How can we be sure of church history when so many revisions were made to it in 1845, the year following the martyrdom of Joseph in 1844? Here is the reproduced footnote:
10. Re Mormon history revision: All the following quotes are from History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 7 vols., [purported author, Joseph Smith], introduction and notes by B. H. Roberts [Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1932-1951]. (All bold emphasis added.) Note: [Do we] know what B[righam]Y[oung] meant by revising—just grammar and style errors or something more? [And is correcting the same as revising?]
» Moreover, since the death of the Prophet Joseph, the history has been carefully revised under the strict inspection of President Brigham Young, and approved by him, (1:v-vi; 7:243)
» Tuesday, April 1, 1845.—I [Brigham Young] commenced revising the History of Joseph Smith at Brother Richards' office: Elder Heber C. Kimball and George A. Smith were with me. President Joseph Smith had corrected forty-two pages before his massacre. It afforded us great satisfaction to hear Brother Richards read the history of the infancy of the church. Adjourned at eleven p.m. having read one hundred and forty pages in Book 'A'.
» Wednesday, [April] 2 [1845].—Engaged at Elder Richards' office with Elders Kimball and Smith revising Church History. (7:389)
» Saturday, [May] 10 [1845].—Brother George A. Smith called upon me this morning and I [BY] accompanied him to the Historian's Office where we read and revised Church History. …
» Monday, [May] 12 [1845].—Evening, with Brothers Heber C. Kimball, W. Richards and George A. Smith at Brother Edward Hunter's revising history.
» Tuesday, [May] 13 [1845].—With Elders Heber C. Kimball, W. Richards and George A. Smith reading and revising Church History at Brother Edward Hunter's where we had retired to keep out of the way of writs reported to have been issued against us. (7:408)
» Wednesday, [May] 14 [1845].—Continued at Brother Edward Hunter's as yesterday; my health, and that of Brother Richards poor; but we read and revised history all day. …
» Friday, [May] 16 [1845].—I spent the day at Brother Hunter's in company with Brothers Heber C. Kimball, Willard Richards, George A. Smith and N. K. Whitney revising history: …
» Saturday, [May] 17 [1845].—Revising history as yesterday, with the addition of Brother John Taylor: … (7:411)
» Tuesday, [May] 20 [1845].—With the brethren named I remained at Brother Pierce's; Willard Richards and George A. Smith joined us. We read and revised fifty-seven pages of History of Joseph Smith from Book 'B': … (7:414)
» Wednesday, [June] 18 [1845].—I met with Elders Heber C. Kimball, John Taylor and George A. Smith at Brother Taylor's; we revised a portion of the History of Joseph Smith. …
» Thursday, [June] 19 [1845].—I spent the day with Brothers H. C. Kimball and George A. Smith revising history. …
» Friday, [June] 20 [1845].—Elders H. C. Kimball, Orson Pratt, George A. Smith, and myself engaged revising Church History. (7:427-428)
» Saturday, [November] 8 [1845].—Revising history in company with Brothers Heber C. Kimball, Willard Richards and George A. Smith till 4 p.m. (7:514)
» Monday, [November] 10 [1845].—I spent the day with Elders Heber C. Kimball, Willard Richards and George A. Smith revising Church History; …
» Tuesday, [November] 11 [1845].—Forenoon, Elders Willard Richards and George A. Smith revising history. Afternoon, Elder Kimball and I joined them, and assisted in revising history. (7:519)
» Wednesday, [November] 26 [1845].—At the Historian's Office with Elder George A. Smith and revised fifty pages history. …
» Friday, [November] 28 [1845].—I went to the Trustees' Office, attending to church business. Elders Willard Richards and George A. Smith read and revised history to the end of 1843. (7:532)
» Monday, [December] 29 [1845].— … Elders George A. Smith and Amasa Lyman revised history. (7:556)
So what was the purpose of so many revisions made to our history? Do we know what and how extensive the revisions were? Were they innocuous? Were they just cleaning up errors? adding things that should have been recorded but had been forgotten as in the Savior's admonition to Nephi4?

Maybe someone has researched and written about these revisions in depth (if they can even be ascertained), but the question remains: How can we know the full truth if we are not open to seeking it? And if we refuse to see and hear 360°, how can we take dogmatic positions with only 180° (or less) awareness? Why do we attach ourselves so readily to rigid positions? holding to hard priors5 instead of viewing as best we can the 360° view and being truly open to proving all things6 with a discerning spirit? Have we not learned from the déjà vus of record-keeping and the prescience of George Orwell's 1984 how easy it is to amend, revise, mis-state, or mis-remember “events”? sometimes deliberately toward error?

What, too, is our real U.S. history? Are we not witnessing every day allegations of “suppressed facts”? of CIA and ST7 psych-ops orchestrated without conscience, sometimes just for the “fun and games” of it? Have we not already been put on notice of the “revision / false attribution” strategy of those early deceivers in our own church history8? How can we be sure what is original-Joseph and what is revision-Joseph? and in these last days what is deep-state propaganda and what is fact?

Perhaps that is why we need to reserve final judgments9 in our Bernayzian10 world, not only about Joseph, but about US until we are ready to hear and see 360°.

-----------------------------/
1. (Søren Kierkegaard ~ 1813-1855); see https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/35782-there-are-two-ways-to-be-fooled-one-is-to
2. Midgley, Mary. The Myths We Live By (p. 28). Taylor and Francis.
3. https://dejavu-timestwo.blogspot.com/2016/01/part-one-evil-speaking-discernment.html
4. Book of Mormon | 3 Nephi 23:8–13 ~ And when Nephi had brought forth the records, and laid them before him, he cast his eyes upon them and said: Verily I say unto you, I commanded my servant Samuel, the Lamanite, that he should testify unto this people, that at the day that the Father should glorify his name in me that there were many saints who should arise from the dead, and should appear unto many, and should minister unto them. And he said unto them: Was it not so? And his disciples answered him and said: Yea, Lord, Samuel did prophesy according to thy words, and they were all fulfilled. And Jesus said unto them: How be it that ye have not written this thing, that many saints did arise and appear unto many and did minister unto them? And it came to pass that Nephi remembered that this thing had not been written. And it came to pass that Jesus commanded that it should be written; therefore it was written according as he commanded.
5. The science writer Sharon Begley gives insight into such motivated reasoning: “If you have a strongly held belief with an emotional component, the brain defends information that reinforces those ‘priors’ and is skeptical of information that challenges them. … People who hold these hard priors filter information to support their perceptions.” (Bold emphasis mine.) These observations are from the work of political scientist Hank Jenkins-Smith of the University of Oklahoma as quoted, in Newsweek, October 13, 2010, pp. 29-30 by science writer Sharon Begley about voter tendencies—observations that seem applicable to almost everything that requires choice or discernment. We all do it, (even this writer) and without awareness of a “priors” bias, are we not all more prone to biased judgment—whether pro or con? Shouldn’t 360° honesty in dealing with all the facts help control that bias?
6. New Testament | 1 Thessalonians 5:21 ~ Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.
7. See L. Fletcher Prouty's, The Secret Team:The CIA and its Allies in Control of the United States and the World
8. Doctrine and Covenants | Section 10:8–37 ~ And because you  [Joseph] have delivered the writings into his hands, behold, wicked men have taken them from you. Therefore, you have delivered them up, yea, that which was sacred, unto wickedness. And, behold, Satan hath put it into their hearts to alter the words which you have caused to be written, or which you have translated, which have gone out of your hands. And behold, I say unto you, that because they have altered the words, they read contrary from that which you translated and caused to be written; And, on this wise, the devil has sought to lay a cunning plan, that he may destroy this work; For he hath put into their hearts to do this, that by lying they may say they have caught you in the words which you have pretended to translate. Verily, I say unto you, that I will not suffer that Satan shall accomplish his evil design in this thing. For behold, he has put it into their hearts to get thee to tempt the Lord thy God, in asking to translate it over again. And then, behold, they say and think in their hearts—We will see if God has given him power to translate; if so, he will also give him power again; And if God giveth him power again, or if he translates again, or, in other words, if he bringeth forth the same words, behold, we have the same with us, and we have altered them; Therefore they will not agree, and we will say that he has lied in his words, and that he has no gift, and that he has no power; Therefore we will destroy him, and also the work; and we will do this that we may not be ashamed in the end, and that we may get glory of the world. Verily, verily, I say unto you, that Satan has great hold upon their hearts; he stirreth them up to iniquity against that which is good; And their hearts are corrupt, and full of wickedness and abominations; and they love darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil; therefore they will not ask of me. Satan stirreth them up, that he may lead their souls to destruction. And thus he has laid a cunning plan, thinking to destroy the work of God; but I will require this at their hands, and it shall turn to their shame and condemnation in the day of judgment. Yea, he stirreth up their hearts to anger against this work. Yea, he saith unto them: Deceive and lie in wait to catch, that ye may destroy; behold, this is no harm. And thus he flattereth them, and telleth them that it is no sin to lie that they may catch a man in a lie, that they may destroy him. And thus he flattereth them, and leadeth them along until he draggeth their souls down to hell; and thus he causeth them to catch themselves in their own snare. And thus he goeth up and down, to and fro in the earth, seeking to destroy the souls of men. Verily, verily, I say unto you, wo be unto him that lieth to deceive because he supposeth that another lieth to deceive, for such are not exempt from the justice of God. Now, behold, they have altered these words, because Satan saith unto them: He hath deceived you—and thus he flattereth them away to do iniquity, to get thee to tempt the Lord thy God. Behold, I say unto you, that you shall not translate again those words which have gone forth out of your hands; For, behold, they shall not accomplish their evil designs in lying against those words. For, behold, if you should bring forth the same words they will say that you have lied and that you have pretended to translate, but that you have contradicted yourself. And, behold, they will publish this, and Satan will harden the hearts of the people to stir them up to anger against you, that they will not believe my words. Thus Satan thinketh to overpower your testimony in this generation, that the work may not come forth in this generation. But behold, here is wisdom, and because I show unto you wisdom, and give you commandments concerning these things, what you shall do, show it not unto the world until you have accomplished the work of translation. Marvel not that I said unto you: Here is wisdom, show it not unto the world—for I said, show it not unto the world, that you may be preserved. Behold, I do not say that you shall not show it unto the righteous; But as you cannot always judge the righteous, or as you cannot always tell the wicked from the righteous, therefore I say unto you, hold your peace until I shall see fit to make all things known unto the world concerning the matter.
9. New Testament | 1 Corinthians 4:5 ~ Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.
10. “The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country.” (Source: https://www.amazon.com/Propaganda-Edward-Bernays-ebook/dp/B0097D76MG/ref=sr_1_1?crid=2NLE7CZI9MORU&keywords=propaganda+bernays&qid=1570053969&sprefix=propaganda%2Caps%2C210&sr=8-1  |  “Edward Bernays (1891–1995), pioneered the scientific technique of shaping and manipulating public opinion, which he famously dubbed “engineering of consent.” During World War I, he was an integral part of the U.S. Committee on Public Information (CPI), a powerful propaganda apparatus that was mobilized to package, advertise and sell the war to the American people as one that would “Make the World Safe for Democracy.” The CPI would become the blueprint in which marketing strategies for future wars would be based upon. // Bernays applied the techniques he had learned in the CPI and, incorporating some of the ideas of Walter Lipmann, became an outspoken proponent of propaganda as a tool for democratic and corporate manipulation of the population.”

 
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