Welcome to Mitt Romney's world
UPDATE November 10, 2012:
The youtube channel by "newnamenoah" has been reinstated again!
UPDATE November 6, 2012:
This post features several video clips by the youtube user "newnamenoah", which he secretly filmed during Mormon temple ceremonies at the temple in Salt Lake City. Unfortunately, about one day ago, the youtube by "newnamenoah" has been closed by youtube due to "hate speech" - current screenshot from this page:
Well, I didn't detect "hate speech" when the account was still online, but it is clear that some people have been very upset by the fact that these clips had been published...!
There are some good news as well. The most successful clip by "newnamenoah" was a summary of his published clips, in which he also included some precise and accurate explanations of the rituals performed in the clips. It was viewed by more then one million people on youtube! Here it is:
Please note that the above clip has also been published on "Liveleak."
Just a few days ago, the USA once again discovered the power of secretly taken video. As a result of the leaking of the now famous "47 percent" video clip, Mitt Romney's campaign is in pieces, and politicians have been reminded that they should watch their mouth at any time. What I especially like about the internet is its power to reveal secrets - especially since many secrets do only exist because some more sinister agenda has to be hidden. Therefore, it also should be questioned whether there is actually any justification for keeping things secret.
Speaking about Mitt Romney: While Romney for example just discovered that "secret" fundraisers are not such a great idea, it is also a fact that he is a very active member of a very secretive religion - Mormonism, "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints." In the past, Mitt Romney has even been a Mormon Bishop, and some of his actions back then came under intense scrutiny. Some progressive journalists concluded that Romney's religion actually might have a much larger impact on his policy views than many people would expect - see for example the extensive report published on September 15 at "Think Progress":
Given recent controversies over rape and abortion, one particular decision by Governor Romney merits renewed scrutiny. In July 2005, Romney cut short a New Hampshire vacation in order to veto a bill requiring hospitals to give emergency contraception to rape victims. (The legislature overrode his veto.) Romney defended his veto by claiming he had “spoken with medical professionals” who had informed him that the morning-after pill could work as “an abortion pill.” Who those unnamed scientists are and what they told Romney is unknown. But Romney’s contention is as false, if not as patently absurd, as Todd Akin’s now classic “legitimate rape” canard. The morning-after pill contains a different dose of hormonal contraception to prevent pregnancy; it does not induce abortion. Romney persists in calling emergency contraception “abortive pills.”
Mitt’s Mormonism matters because in the one elective office he has held, he governed in accord with Mormon doctrines and against the consensus values of the citizens who elected him. It matters because, by all accounts, it has been the most powerful influence in forging his values and identity. And it matters because the Mormon Church has deployed its wealth and power in the political arena for the purpose of keeping women and gays in their God-given place.
That being the case it is definitely a good idea to take a closer look at Mitt Romney's religion.
I do not believe that there is any justification for a religion to practise for example secret rituals. Of course, it is understandable for a religion being practised in a "private" setting, but why should there be any need for absolute secrecy? In the modern world, a high degree of transparency is necessary. This is what in my opinion distinguishes a religion from a cult - and it becomes especially relevant if a high-ranking member of this religion wants to become the most powerful person in the world.
In this post, I cannot provide a comprehensive overview about Mormonism, but I would like to focus on several video clips which recently appeared on youtube (and as we all know by now, youtube is one of Mitt Romney's fiercest enemies...). These clips reveal further fascinating insights into Mormon views and practises, and are an excellent addition to facts which are already known.
It is incredibly difficult to tape the proceedings in a Mormon temple. Only the very faithful receive admission to the temple - and to reveal what happens in there is considered to be a great sin. One website (highly recommended), which contains a lot of interesting details about Mormonism, explains:
Whenever a new Mormon temple is finished, it is always opened to the public for a few weeks for inspection before it is dedicated. This is the only opportunity that a non-Mormon (or an unworthy Mormon) will have to see the inside of a Mormon temple. If there should be a new temple built in your area, you might consider taking the pre-dedication tour. You will not see any of the rituals performed, but you will have a chance to see the building and its furnishings.
Mormons who wish to participate in any of the temple rituals must first request an interview with the bishop of their local ward (that is, the pastor of their local Mormon congregation), who will examine them individually as to their religious beliefs, their loyalty to the church leaders, their abstinence from forbidden things (alcohol, tobacco, coffee, tea), their sexual morality, and the extent of their financial contributions to the church. If the bishop determines from this examination that they are sufficiently worthy, he will issue them a "recommend," that is, a pass to the temple, valid for two years. (Until 2002 the recommend was valid for only one year.) The member must then take the recommend to the stake president (the church officer who oversees several local wards), who will conduct a similar interview before countersigning the recommend. Many Mormons always carry their recommend, which is the size of a credit card, in their purse or wallet.
Upon arrival at the temple, a temple worker at the reception desk examines the recommend and grants admission. Those who do not own their own temple clothing may rent the necessary clothing items for a small fee. Most Mormons who regularly attend the temple own their own set of temple clothing and bring it in a small suitcase or bag.
Recently, one (former) Mormon who calls himself "newnamenoah" published on youtube a series of secretly taken video clips which constitute probably the largest "leak" of footage taken in a Mormon temple ever. These clips give fascinating insights into the secret temple rituals, and they reveal how deeply Mormonism was influenced for example by the rituals of the freemasons (the Mormon founder Joseph Smith Jr. was a freemason until his death). These rituals would be highly suspect to anyone who has grown up for example with Christianity.
The largest clip uploaded by "newnamenoah" is a complete Mormon temple endowment ceremony. He explains in the video description:
This is the entire Mormon Temple Endowment Ceremony (with movie) that is in every temple in the world except the Manti, Utah and Salt Lake City, Utah temples. (Those two temples have temple workers act out the endowment ceremony instead of showing a movie in those two temples.)
Mormons believe they must wear special underwear (which can only be purchased in special Mormon Church owned stores) and learn secret Masonic handshakes in order to go to Heaven.
Take special note of the "Law of Consecration" that is at the 58:40 mark. Mitt Romney has sworn to obey this oath countless times. Do you really want the President of the United States to be a man who has sworn to "consecrate" all of his "time, talents and everything with which the Lord has blessed him with or with which he WILL BE blessed with" to the Mormon Church?!?!
It seems to me that THAT oath might conflict with the oath of office.
Watch the clip:
UPDATE FEBRUARY 23, 2014:
The video of the complete endowment ceremony, recorded by "newnamenoah" has been blocked on copyright grounds by the Mormon Church, but another user re-posted it:
UPDATE NOVEMBER 2012:
The ex-mormon "newnamenoah" now also uploaded the complete "live version" of the Mormon Endowment Ceremony, as performed at the historic Mormon temple in Salt Lake City - click here to watch.
But this is by far not everything.
The user "newnamenoah" also for example upload a series of six other short clips which contain parts from the endowment ceremony, but also fascinating parts of other Mormon rituals, and the clips highlight some of the "weirder" aspects of Mormonism. I doubt very much that the Americans would elect somebody to become their president who has performed such kind of rituals for decades!
Clip 1 - Veil instructions:
Clip 2 - Secret handshakes at the veil:
Another youtube user, who used to be a temple worker in LA, uploaded an excellent clip in 2011 in which he explained these veil ceremonies. This clip is the perfect addition to the two clips above:
The fourth clip shows a particularly controversial part of the Mormon rituals - the baptism for the dead.
As we can see, children function as "stand-ins" for the dead people who are being baptised. Pretty creepy indeed!
Clip 5 - temple chants and costumes:
Clip 6 - Inside the prayer circle:
Finally, a little highlight at the end:
The user "newnamenoah" published another video which he called "The Mormon Temple: OFFICIAL TRAILER w/ Mitt Romney." Now, this is a promising title, but do we actually have a little "Mother Jones moment" somewhere in the clip? ;-)
Let's take a look:
Well, as you can see, the faces of the people in the clip are obscured. So is Mitt Romney appearing in the clip or not?
I established contact with the youtube user "newnamenoah" and asked him. I convinced myself that he is "legit" (although this was already pretty obvious), and I also received additional information from him. He explained to me that he obscured the faces of the people in the clips for reasons of privacy, which is understandable. He also explained that he has several pieces of footage from the temple which show Mitt Romney, but that he is hesitant to publish the footage. He is willing to reveal that Mitt Romney can been seen in the above clip from the 1:05 to 1:15 point - and I believe him. We can offer no "hard proof" for this assertion right now - but this is fine, as the aim of my post is not to upstage "Mother Jones" with some follow-up scoop, but to highlight previously unknown details about Mormonism.
In the end, it does not matter whether Mitt Romney is included in the videos or not, as the video clips show rituals which Mitt Romney without any doubt has been practising for decades. This is also what "newnamenoah" pointed out to me in our exchange, in which he also stressed that it is not without danger to videotape the proceedings in a Mormon temple:
People realize that Mitt Romney has done this EXACT stuff literally HUNDREDS of times, right?
Before 1990, Mitt and everyone else that went through the temple had to pantomime their own murder in various ways (i.e., drawing thumb across their own throats in a cutting motion, drawing thumb across belly in a disemboweling motion) and vow that we (I did it too) would not reveal any of the things we did in the temple or we would “…suffer my life to be taken.” Before 1990 we would also chant, “Pay Lay Ale” three times and were told that it meant, “Oh God, hear the words of my mouth” in the “pure Adamic language” that Adam and Eve spoke in the Garden of Eden (which Mormons believe was located in Jackson County, MO.)
There are tens of thousands of Mormons just in Utah alone that have pantomimed their OWN murders in Mormon temples and sworn to NEVER reveal the things taught in the temple.
Lastly, Mitt has sworn to obey the “Law of Consecration” which is as follows:
You and each of you covenant and promise before God, angels, and these witnesses at this altar, that you do accept the law of consecration as contained in this, the book of Doctrine and Covenants [he displays the book], in that you do consecrate yourselves, your time, talents, and everything with which the Lord has blessed you, or with which he may bless you, to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, for the building up of the kingdom of God on the earth and for the establishment of Zion. Each of you bow your head and say, "Yes."
This would obviously include his “time and talents” as President of the United States. God how I wish SOMEONE would ask Mitten on camera, “Mr. Romney, do you still vow to obey the oath you’ve made countless times in Mormon temples to consecrate ALL of your time and talents, both current and future, to the Mormon Church?”
That, in my opinion, is a MILLION times worse than ANYTHING Obama heard form Rev. Wright. Obama NEVER swore an oath to consecrate all of his time and talents to building up ANY religion.
Also, in a comment on youtube yesterday, "newnamenoah" said:
Do you know of ANY other religion that requires you to change brands of underwear if you leave their church? Any other religion that requires special handshakes to get into heaven? Any other religion that prevents non-member family and friends from witnessing marriages?
Therefore we can safely conclude that there are more facts about Mitt Romney which need to be discovered and emphasized. His religion should not be "off-limits."
A final note:
Realizing that Mormonism has a large "secret world", it also does not surprise me that Mitt Romney seemed comfortable to mouth-off with his real views at the now famous, supposedly secret posh fundraiser. Romney is used to the fact that some things can only be said in secrecy. He is certainly also used to the notion that such secret gatherings are very protected, just like the secret proceedings in a Mormon temple. So it can very well be the case that the "habits" of Mormonism heavily contributed to Mitt Romney's downfall. This I find very interesting thought. Also, we have to ask how secretive would a Romney-presidency be? Hopefully we won't have to find out.
See this website for detailed information about Mormon temple rituals.
Another very informative clip, from the History Channel: "10 things you don't know about Mormons"
More interesting reports here: "Mormon Temple Experiences - Stories from Mormons on their visits to the Temples"
Website which explains in detail the Mormon endowment ceremony
A very good source for carefully researched information about Mormonism is the website mormonthink.com. David Twede, the managing editor of this website, a fifth-generation Mormon who lives in Florida, is currently being threatened with excommunication by the LDS church, as reported by the Daily Beast and the New York Times. It was interesting for me to discover that the editors at mormonthink.com have very similar thoughts about Mitt Romney and his relationship to secrecy - quote from the website:
White Horse or Night Mare?+++
As much as many Mormons may want Romney to be the White Horse, there is a missing nail in his shoe that could throw the whole race. Mitt Romney refuses to disclose financial information buried in his tax returns because, according to Ann Romney: “We have been very transparent to what’s legally required of us. There’s going to be no more tax releases given.” Mitt has said, “Our church doesn’t publish how much people have given... One of the downsides of releasing one’s financial information is that this is now all public, but we had never intended our contributions to be known.” This underscores a pattern of secrecy that he likely learned as a member of the LDS church. Not only does it keep the wording, mimed actions and penalties for revealing its temple ceremonies secret, it has also refused to disclose its financial information—charitable and corporate—since before the 1960s. Why would exalted prophets refuse to disclose business profits? Perhaps it’s because the LDS church recently invested well over two billion dollars (exact amount still secret) into a high-scale mall at the Salt Lake City Creek Center—a mall that includes Tiffany & Co., Porsche Design, Tuma, Pandora, Rolex and more to cater to the wealthy of Utah. Hiding financials is a lesson Mitt may have learned early in life as a young Mormon.
I just found this excellent BBC-documentary on youtube, called "The Mormon Candidate." From the 27:00 mark, the proceedings in the temple are being discussed, and right afterwards, BBC-journalist John Sweeney visits a group of ex-Mormons, which is particularly interesting. The complete documentary is well worth watching.