Sunday, June 12, 2022

That Old Time Religion


For those of you who wonder what on earth could make having a house on Dog Island worth the work and effort it takes to get there and maintain it, there's a picture for you. 
Here's another. 


Combine sunsets like that along with the absolute peace and isolation of the place and it becomes more understandable. You can literally go for days on the island without seeing another human being, meanwhile being surrounded by water, sky, trees, and birds. This is so rare in our world today. 

Mr. Moon sent me those pictures last night. He and Chip had had a long day but had grilled themselves steaks and made a big salad and even invited our neighbor on the island to come and eat with them. As far as I know, the boys are still over there. The last text I got from my husband said they were running late and that he'd let me know when they'd made the crossing. I suggested they take it easy, spend another night, and get up and fish before coming home. I doubt they will though. 
Look what they got done.


Ta Da! That is the area underneath the house. Our old washer and dryer got flooded during a hurricane and needed replacing. Glen's been looking out for good deals for a long time for appliances we need and squirreling them away in that GarageMahal of his. It's so excellent to have the ability to do laundry there. It's just about a necessity if you're staying for more than a few days and it's nice to be able to leave all the beds with clean sheets and all the bathrooms with clean towels when you leave, all ready for your return. 
And so forth. 

I have had my lazy day. I just could not face time outside. I have no idea in the world how those men could be doing things like installing machines in this heat. The only thing I did outside was to pick beans and a few other things. 


That's a sweet basket of goodness, isn't it? I'll be pickling more beans, probably on Tuesday. I need to go to the store tomorrow and I need more canning bands. I have some but they've been reused for so long that they're getting rusty and although that probably won't interfere with the canning process, it sort of makes me worry. 

Last night I started watching a limited series on Netflix called "Keep Sweet: Pray and Obey" and finished it up today. It's about the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints who still very much believe in polygamy and which was headed by their "prophet" Warren Jeffs after his father, Rulon Jeffs died which was a shocker for the church as they were quite sure that he would never die, being so holy and all. 
That is some fucked-up shit right there, y'all. 
I'd read a book written by the woman who helped authorities with a case against Warren Jeffs, Elissa Wall, who was forced into marriage by Jeffs when she was fourteen with her cousin despite her unwillingness. With her testimony, they were able to charge Jeffs with being an accomplice to rape which eventually led to charges of child sexual abuse. Warren himself had over seventy wives, some of them under the age of fourteen. 
Although I'd read Wall's book, the Netflix series put faces to the names and the shocking images of pregnant fourteen-year old girls in prairie dresses with intricately braided hair with the regulation poof in front is enough to make you want to commit murder on anyone who would perpetrate this system, especially under the guise of it being the will of god. 
Warren Jeffs is still running the church from prison and because so many of the members in it have been indoctrinated since birth, and because they are kept in such isolation, he is still seen as and called The Prophet. 
We all know how I feel about religion but this sect definitely takes it all to a horrifying level of abuse. Girls are basically raised as chattel, and assigned in marriage to older men who are already "married" to many, many women. And told that this is how they will get to heaven and that in doing so, they are doing the will of their god. 
The Mormon church, the "real" Mormon church, now known as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, officially ended the practice of plural marriage in 1890 when it was either that or get prosecuted. But. BUT. It is still part of their beliefs in that if a man and a woman are sealed in the Temple for eternity (married) and the woman dies and the man takes another wife and is sealed to her, both of those women will be his wives in the Celestial Kingdom. 
Yeah. That's not weird. 
And yet, I have to admit that I am absolutely fascinated by what people can be led to believe and practice when they are indoctrinated to those beliefs and practices. The official LDS church is in deep trouble because people can access whatever they want online now but it is still hugely difficult for many of them to renounce their beliefs and leave the church because that is where their families and communities are. For people who have no access at all to the outside world, who don't even know who the president of the United States is, leaving their church is almost unthinkable if not impossible. 

Phew. That's not what I came here to talk about today but it's what I'm pondering. And let me say this- how many of OUR beliefs are so deeply embedded in us that we do not see them as troublesome? The patriarchy, for instance. Racism, homophobia, patriotism. The list goes on and on of things we believe in until we learn better, and some of us never do. 

One more picture. 


That's one of Darla's children who obviously feels old enough to sleep in his own nest without his mama. 
I wonder how long it will be until all of them leave her nest? 

We made it through another Sunday! 

Love...Ms. Moon

34 comments:

  1. Hi Mary, I'd never heard of Dog Island. I even lived in Maimi for a while. I looked it up. I even saw a YouTube video of the island. Really beautiful.
    They showed the Pelican Hotel. I read that it closed in 2016. Did you ever stay there? They went inside and it was still intact and looked pretty nice. Amazing. Did the hotel close for lack of business? I take it there's no permanent (or not many) residents on the island. What about running water and electric? Sorry for so many questions. It's just fascinating. I'm assuming you have a home there. Thanks, Paranormal John

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    1. The Pelican Inn- which no, I never stayed at, has been washed away, I think, by a hurricane or storm. The coastline is ever-changing on the island. We do have electricity AND running water but the water is not potable. We use it for washing and showering and flushing toilets. But whatever water we need for drinking, we bring with us. There are a few permanent residents. Not many.
      We do have a very small little cottage there on the bayside. I haven't been there in years (long, long story) but I have spent many, many days and nights there. Sometimes with my husband, sometimes with my whole family, sometimes with one or two children, sometimes with a friend or two. It's difficult, it's magical, it's Florida as it once was. There are no stores, shops, or restaurants. Anything you need, you will have to bring over by boat or by small plane.

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  2. Interesting thoughts about LDS. I'm torn between disapproving of people who go out as missionaries to convert to their beliefs and admiration for the courage of people who do it no matter what their reception. The couple of Mormons I've known seem to have a lot of children, so maybe that's an expectation of women.

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    1. Their mission program has a lot of elements to it. It's really cool that the kids get to go and live in different parts of the world but basically, I think, the main reason for it is to keep the young people completely indoctrinated at that age when normally, they would be questioning everything. Also- since they aren't supposed to have sex until they are married, the mission program keeps them exhausted. The rules and regulations are extremely strict. They are never alone except for in the bathroom. And yes, women are not allowed to be "priest holders" or hold any position in the church of real authority and are told that their true mission in life is to raise children in the church. That, too, is becoming a problem for the church as young girls and young women are not quite so accepting of that philosophy.

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  3. Looking good on Dog Island! A washer and dryer will make a huge difference in your quality of life there.

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    1. I can't imagine being there without them.

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  4. Dog Island sounds wonderful, but I'm too lazy to have to deal with being far from services. I am in awe of you husband and what he accomplishes. And I am in awe of your vegetables. I couldn't face doing ANYTHING in that heat.

    Have you listened to Under The Banner of Heaven by on Jon Krakauer? It is a fascinating account of the start of the LDS church, and how it's theology lends itself to splinter groups. It then follows one of the splinter groups. It is a great audible listen, a non-fiction page turner.

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    1. I have indeed read "Under the Banner" but have not watched the series as we don't have HULU. These people get so caught up in such unbelievable shit.

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  5. well, those two first photos *are* religion......my religion! Gorgeous. Glad the men got so much done. LDS.......ugh. My *step* MIL is an LDS......but she does not adhere to these archaic beliefs.....she is actually the kindest and most giving, loving woman. Always extremists in every walk of life. Hope Mr Moon will be home soon......... hope martini and clean sheets on tap!
    Susan M

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    1. After years of listening to Mormon Stories Podcast, I honestly can say that Mormons are some of the nicest people on earth. They just believe really weird shit. Even the non-extremists. If they are true believers they accept a lot of crap.

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  6. More on Latter Day Saints: My younger daughter married into the Church. Her husband eventually came out as gay, four children later. A case of trying to live up to his church and his parent's expectations. He was a missionary after high school and spent the time in Japan. That makes me wonder how prevalent is sexual experimentation among the missionaries, since is is against their faith, but a wonderful time of minimal supervision to check it out; to be.

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    1. I don't think there's a whole lot of sexual experimentation of any sort going on in the mission program. I'm sure it DOES happen but they have those kids under a super tight reign every second of the day and night. And if anyone reported someone for same sex attraction, much less activity, they'd be sent home so fast it would make their heads spin and their families would be dishonored forever. I'm really sorry to hear about your daughter's ex-husband. I assume he's an ex. That is very common- go on a mission, get married in the church, and you will be "cured." Of course no one ever is.

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  7. My great grandparent with his brothers, The HANKS brothers, came over from England to start/ practice their newly inspired religion. Pushing their barrows over the trail ruts to get to Utah the promised land , whatever, They became rather important in the Maniacal Mormon religion, I visited them when I was a girl. Weirdest damned set up ever, I came home real quick- I had questions. My Mom was polite but my Dad would not let them in the house. "Crazy" he said, "full of crap" he said. The relatives were nice, and smart but the disconnect was too much tilt! Plus if they did vote they voted wrong. Now they are in England- 2 temples worth! The religion seems to be growing there now. Mystery!

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    1. I think the only place the religion is growing right now is in Africa. Possibly a few places in central and south America.
      I guess your Mormon ancestors were some of the original pioneers. As they call them. The Hand Cart pioneers. What a damn scam that was.

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  8. Beautiful seaside pictures, I see the attraction there. Crazy religions, I've come to think that most all organized religions are cults, my opinion only. Your straight from the garden veggies always look delectable!

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    1. Oh, I agree with you about religions being cults. Some are far more culty than others, though. The ones that make it very hard to leave the religion, the ones that tear families apart, the ones that try and prevent members from doing research or learning things on their own about their beliefs. The LDS church ticks all those boxes for sure.

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  9. AAAAAHHHH! I am also watching Keep Sweet (and just finished Under the Banner of Heaven) and of course also read Elissa Wall's book and am halfway through a Mormon Stories episode about Teal Swan. Someday I will figure out how to write about why cults are so fascinating to me, and weirdly reassuring (maybe they help explain why I stayed in an abusive marriage for so long, even though I wasn't in a cult, but it feels familiar).

    My chickens have decided it is winter again. We have gotten almost 3 inches of rain in as many days, and it's been raining for almost two weeks straight and barely above 70 degrees. I'm hoping one goes broody so I can raise some new chicks and also hoping it might break 70 degrees so my poor tomatoes start growing instead of shivering in their little cages.

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    1. I'm about to start listening to the Teal Swan episode. I'm still a Mormon Stories Podcast addict. I can't help it. I think there are a lot of similarities to cults and being in abusive relationships. I'm sure that John Dehlin would agree. You should get in touch with them and see if they'd do an episode on that subject! Wouldn't you love to meet him and the others? I would.
      Oh, I hope one of your hens goes broody. It's so much easier letting a hen raise peeps than doing it yourself. Can you get fertile eggs? I'm sure you can. I'm wishing it would break 70 degrees here, too, but from the other direction. We are sweltering and the tomato plants are not happy.

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  10. My ex-BIL was excommunicated from the LDS when one of his multiple affairs was discovered. He had women all over the world - who were only interested in his money but the ugly fool thought he was irresistible. He dumped my sister and her 4 children (one legally blind) for a Russian garden tool he met online, who promptly took him to the cleaners and took all his money off him. Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. I know one bad apple and all that but just coincidentally he was a bible thumping LDS! Thankfully I haven't seen him in years, nor do I care to, but last I heard he was living in a shed!

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    1. "A Russian garden tool..." Haha! I assume she's not living with him in the shed although that would be appropriate.
      An asshole is an asshole, no matter what religion he or she is in.

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    2. Nah she's back in Russia living with her still husband!

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  11. My first crush was our postman who was a teenager on a bicycle, when I eventually met his family, I found out they were Mormon, but I think they do things differently in Australia. There were no extra wives and they didn't preach 'the will of God' all the time.
    I find it hard to believe there are people who don't know who is President there.

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    1. There are no plural marriages here either in the church except for the ones after death. Such a crock. The show I was talking about is about a splinter sect that I'm sure the LDS church would never, ever recognize as being part of their religion.

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  12. It angers me that there are men who twist religion to serve their own ends, or in this case, dicks. WTF! Why are men so fucking afraid of women? What did we ever do to them?

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    1. We gave birth to them. They can't create life and they are scared of us because we can. That's my theory.

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  13. If the old men are getting all the young girls who do the young men marry? Or maybe they just set the boy babies out to perish. Dangerous cults. Apparently we humans are strangely susceptible to that shit. Witness the Trump cult. Just finished watching the second committee hearing. The things they believe because that's what Trump told them.

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    1. They do dump a lot of the teenaged boys off in big cities. Or, bigger cities. This is a huge problem because these kids have no knowledge of the outside world and no education to speak of. It's horrifyingly cruel.
      I was having the same thoughts today about the second Trump hearing. And you know- I doubt that even with all of this evidence and testimony, the Trumpers are still going to believe the election was stolen and that Trump used all that money he collected from them for his legal defense.

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  14. That is a lovely view so I can see why you like to go to Dog Island. Good thing that you have water and electricity! I don't think I could live there, tho. Have you explained how Dog Island got its name? I can't remember...

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    1. I've read several theories as to how Dog Island got its name but I don't think that any of them are definitive. I couldn't live there either. At one time in my life, I might have been able to handle it but I don't think I could now.

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  15. I watched all 4 episodes of that docuseries yesterday. I liked it a lot. Effed up topic but well done series.

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    1. I agree. How can all of those people trust and believe in that slimy snake?

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  16. Dog Island sounds intriguing — sunset photos magnificent! Veggies look delicious.

    Read some old documents on the internet years ago at the time LDS founded. Much argument, debated over whether the so-called history was simply that of a fictional story some writer had written. They could never definitively establish that and the writer had died as I recall. Reminded me of L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology and look how that “religion”:is followed by some.

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  17. That’s a beautiful washer dryer set up right there. Go Mr Moon! And that sunset. Wow.

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Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.