Friday, January 21, 2011

Manipulation WAS RE: Touching base

Hi T.,

[Max wrote] "And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit eternal life. But many that are first shall be last, and the last shall be first." (Matt. 19:29-30.)

[T. wrote] I've never thought of applying that scripture in that way, I've always thought of it regarding the Gentiles and house of Israel.  The house of Israel was the first to receive the gospel at the time of Christ (focusing specifically on the Jews for example) then the Gentiles after Christ's ascension; even so, in this dispensation the Gentiles (and the lost tribes of Israel) will receive the gospel first while the Jews will be after Christ's second coming.

[Max replies] Some principles apply in multiple situations and are given as the answer to more than one question. For instance, see JST Matt 5:32-34 ("if thy right hand offend thee..."), where hand/foot/eye represent sins according to v 34, and the same analogy in JST Mark 9:40-48 where they represent other people. The scripture does apply to the Gentiles & House of Israel as well (for instance 1 Nephi 13:42) but here in Matthew 10 (and also in Mark 10:29-31) Jesus is answering a question about personal destiny. It wouldn't make sense if he answered Peter's question by talking about the Gentiles: he is talking about Peter (and it's quoted in the scriptures because the same answer applies to all the righteous).

[Max wrote] 2.) One reason the inversion occurs in the first place is that eternity and mortality play by different rules. Things that work inmortality don't work in eternity and sometimes vice versa. (See Moses 8:15 for an example of playing by mortality's rules, and where it leads.) ...

[Tom wrote] I'm not sure I follow your thinking here.  Are you saying Noah's daughters were playing by mortality's rules and thus condemned of God?

[Max replies] I suspected that reference was too oblique when I wrote it. Compare Moses 8:12-14 to Genesis 19:14, and think about the fact that Noah's granddaughters (and grandsons-in-law) were not on the Ark. Why? At least in part, because their husbands weren't spiritually awake. (Didn't take Noah seriously, just like Lot's sons-in-law didn't take him or the message from the angels seriously.) Why then did they marry these men? They must have had something to offer--we don't know if it was good looks, or money, or just making them feel great emotionally--but they valued those qualities more than they valued a love of righteousness, which is why the Lord says they "sold themselves." As for the husbands in question: yes, they got the girls, and were probably popular with their (wicked) friends and rich to boot. And then they drowned. And spent the next 3000-4000 years (at least) in spirit prison. Short-term success, long-term failure. It only looks like success in the short term.

[Tom wrote] After reading your example below I'm glad you wouldn't treat your wife that way.  I do not believe manipulation is behavior becoming a priesthood holder.  I've found manipulation to, in a way, deny a person their God given right to be a person and choose despite their motivation.

I don't think I share that view, and in fact I think manipulation, in a sense, is an important duty of a husband. Women are emotional creatures, and it's my duty to know what her buttons are and how to push them. What is a candlelit dinner and a romantic evening but a form of emotional manipulation? You're using your knowledge of her psychology to customize her experience to put her in a certain mood. It's not like she minds, either, and in fact she will cooperate because it makes her feel good. Self-manipulation is also very useful: knowing how to push your own buttons in such a way that your emotions do what you want them to. The key component to both kinds of manipulation is actual knowledge of the details of how a person works internally.

However, I have other problems with the described behavior.


Be pretty if you are,
Be witty if you can,
But be cheerful if it kills you.

If you're so evil, eat this kitten!

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