The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy: Haunting the Hearts and Heaven of Mormon Women and Men

The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy Haunting the Hearts and Heaven of Mormon Women and Men Polygamy says the mainstream Mormon Church We gave that up long ago Not so claims noted LDS poet and author Carol Lynn Pearson who examines the issue as it has never been examined before Any member

  • Title: The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy: Haunting the Hearts and Heaven of Mormon Women and Men
  • Author: Carol Lynn Pearson
  • ISBN: 9780997458206
  • Page: 457
  • Format: Paperback
  • Polygamy says the mainstream Mormon Church We gave that up long ago Not so, claims noted LDS poet and author Carol Lynn Pearson, who examines the issue as it has never been examined before Any member of the LDS Church today who enters the practice of polygamy is immediately excommunicated However, Pearson claims, polygamy itself has never been excommunicated, but Polygamy says the mainstream Mormon Church We gave that up long ago Not so, claims noted LDS poet and author Carol Lynn Pearson, who examines the issue as it has never been examined before Any member of the LDS Church today who enters the practice of polygamy is immediately excommunicated However, Pearson claims, polygamy itself has never been excommunicated, but has an honored and protected place at the table It has only been postponed, a fact confirmed by thousands of eternal sealings giving a man an assurance that he will claim as wives in heaven the two, three, or even women he has sequentially married during his lifetime No such opportunity is available to women Through her own personal stories, those of her ancestors, and the thousands of stories that came to her through an Internet survey, Pearson shows the power of the Ghost of Eternal Polygamy as it not only waits on the other side to greet the most righteous in heaven, but also haunts the living hiding in the recesses of the Mormon psyche, inflicting profound pain and fear, assuring women that they are still objects, harming or destroying marriages, bringing chaos to family relationships, leading many to lose faith in the church and in God Mormon historian and author Dr Gregory Prince says of The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy Carol Lynn Pearson has hit a home run in her quest to illuminate both the damage that Mormonism s de facto practice of polygamy continues to inflict, and the route to a better, humane place Those who truly hope for eternal polygamy or who resent any call to institutional reform will be upset, but countless others will rejoice that she has shown a excellent way.

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      Published :2019-02-16T05:24:11+00:00

    One thought on “The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy: Haunting the Hearts and Heaven of Mormon Women and Men”

    1. 08/17/2016 UPDATED because it turns out I still have THOUGHTS:When my friend lent me this book I asked if it was going to make me angry and she said no. My fuse must be shorter than hers, because it made me SO angry. I was ignorant to some of the ramifications of our current "eternal polygamy" doctrine and practices. But after reading all the submitted stories from women and men it's hard to ignore the pain it causes many individuals, couples, and families. In particular our policies can put you [...]

    2. I will start by saying that I have a lot of feelings surrounding polygamy. A lot. You can't come out of reading D&C 132 (the whole text, not just the one fluffy feel good verse that gets read in Sunday School) without a lot of complicated feels. And then you dig more into the messy history and the accounts of people who actually lived it. And then there's everything with how the practice continues in fundamentalist groups. And it goes on, just a big mess with no simple or straightforward ans [...]

    3. Holy cow this was SO GOOD. So good. I can't even get over it. I heard the author on RadioWest, and was just bowled over by how sincere she was and how much she cared about both the LDS church and this topic, one in which she's basically arguing how wrong the church is about it.I don't want to get into the nuts and bolts of Mormon theology in this review, just know that we Mormons believe that if you marry in the temple then your marriage is eternal and you are sealed to one another and your chil [...]

    4. I have always loved the writings of Carol Lynn Pearson until now. I was devastated from reading The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy that she has promoted and even encouraged the idea of main stream members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints (LDS Church) that God does not love them because He wants His daughters to live in a polygamous relationship in Heaven Bull cocky!!!Under the guise of her self proclaimed "wise-woman elder" position, she discusses the doctrine of polygamy in Mormoni [...]

    5. Though the LDS church would like to banish polygamy as a relic of its past, polygamy is unfortunately still with us today through current sealing practices. Our admission of spiritual polygamy allows a culture in which women can still be viewed as accessories to a man's eternal progression and glory. This view, if left to flourish within a patriarchy (no matter how benevolent) confounds family relationships, the identity of our heavenly parents, and our own eternal progression. There will be no [...]

    6. Bless Carol Lynn Pearson. She has a gift for telling it like it is, naming things that are wrong as such, but in a way that expresses love and hope. I learned more about my own history reading this book, and also gained a deep sense of validation for my own feelings about polygamy.

    7. I grew up singing songs written by Carol Lynn Pearson in my LDS primary activities. Little did I know that I would eventually revisit her work as an adult after leaving the LDS church. At first, I didn't have a great deal of interest in reading this book because Pearson continues to be a practicing Latter-day Saint, and I assumed that with that came a lack of nuance. I'm glad to report that I couldn't have been more wrong. Pearson carefully weaves in dozens of stories of men and women (whose sto [...]

    8. I've read many books about LDS history in the past 8 years. But this book. This book. It touched me in a way I've never felt before. Every feeling, every struggle I've had with polygamy was not only addressed in this book, but completely validated. And yet, this book is so much more than a book about polygamy. It's about women in the church, men in the church, and the policies that have created where we are now. Pearson is a master storyteller and an active, faithful member (I feel that bears me [...]

    9. My best advice for reading this book is to make sure you are able to discuss it with other women upon completion. I think Carol Lynn Pearson did a good job presenting her thoughts and feelings on polygamy in the LDS church as well as representing the views of hundreds of practicing and ex-members of the Church. I do think Pearson worked hard to sterilize her true opinion (although I can't speak on what it actually is); a lot of this book is praising Joseph Smith and proclaiming her love for the [...]

    10. So happy to see my unformed thoughts and beliefs in print! Grateful for CLP who is eloquent and brave and has presented this material in a kind, faithful and bold way. A couple of my favorites: Her generous quote regarding Joseph Smith (based on a lovely thought by Dinah Craik)- "I count myself as a friend to Brother Joseph, and I wish to honor him like this. I hold the fullness of his life in the palm of my hand, chaff and grain together. I keep the many kernels worth keeping, and with the brea [...]

    11. I have put off writing this review for months simply because the book means so much to me, and my own words are inadequate to convey why that is. Sometimes my very favorite books receive no more than a couple of lines from me for that very reason. Since I love this author, and I know the book is not getting all the attention it deserves, I will add my tiny voice. First off, there is so much more to this book than a discussion of polygamy in the LDS church. That said, I am not sure if this book w [...]

    12. 5 stars for the writing and cohesive, well cited book. 4 stars because it's so hard to read. I can't say "I loved it" because it's painful to experience. Ms. Pearson paints an honest, and therefore, quite ugly picture of the real harm of polygamy to LDS members past and present. This book will haunt you. Outsiders will read it and think "Wait, they really do this? They REALLY believe this?" And insiders will be forced to confront that even in modern day 2016 every Mormon couple has to talk about [...]

    13. I have a love-hate relationship with this book. There were so many, *so many*, moments of "Woah! I never knew that before!" and even many "Wow. I've thought these very thoughts," which - obviously - bodes well for how I feel about the book in the end.But thenI'm not really sure that I appreciate the writing style of Carol Lynn Pearson at least not in context of this book and its subject matter. The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy is part scholarly work (complete with sociological research), part memoi [...]

    14. This book elicits so many negative emotions, as it should. These feelings come from my ancestral past, from my maternal great great grandmother Lavina Young, who married John D. Lee as a 13th or 14th wife (she and her sister Polly married him on the same day). They come, unbidden and still painful, from a relatively recent personal family trauma. And yet, life is messy, and my feelings can also be ambivalent. My own beloved sister died at age 35, leaving 3 children and a wonderful husband who la [...]

    15. I can't decide whether to give this book 4 or 5 stars, so I'm going to split the difference at 4.5. This book centers around a tough topic, and I think Carol Lynn covers it beautifully. I can't remember when I first learned that a man could still be sealed to more than one woman in the LDS church, but I do know that for years I thought that if I could just be righteous enough I would be able to stand the thought of my husband being sealed to another woman if I died before him. Even as I type tho [...]

    16. It's kind of amazing that in the 21st century, a book has to be written to try and convince leadership of a church that they should completely disavow the practice of polygamy. That's religion for you--painfully slow to change, even things that are just wrong--in practice and in philosophy. Look at the Catholic church expecting celibacy of its priests and how much pain and dysfunction that has caused.This book examines the history of polygamy in the LDS church, how it arose, the response to it, [...]

    17. I'm having a hard time reviewing this book. I am giving it a 5 because of how important I think the message is, though I am not crazy about some of the prose and find bits of the historical analysis and future applications slightly less nuanced compared to some other accounts I have read (Laurel Thatcher Ulrich's House Full of Females, for example). I do, however, agree with the basic thesis. Polygamy = destructive, we must urgently answer for it and stop hurting women. My favorite parts were th [...]

    18. The "Ghost" in "the Ghost of Eternal Polygamy" refers to some of the uncertainties that surround the doctrine and historical practice of plural marriage in the LDS church. To be clear, the LDS church and its living adherents have not practiced civil plural marriage for over one hundred years. Yet, a modern LDS woman could still find herself anticipating a plural marriage. For example, she could precede her husband in death. Her surviving husband might eventually marry another woman. If both marr [...]

    19. carol Lynn Pearson is a fantastic writer & thinker, and sensitive to all sides of the story. I think you can read this book from the perspective of active LDS, inactive LDS, former LDS, and quite possibly never LDS. she does a good job with a very delicate and passionate topic, and hopefully will make a lasting impact and change in the church.

    20. Carol Lynn Pearson is Mormonism's poet laureate. The author of over 40 books and screenplays, she has helped shape the contours of LDS culture more than most members of the church realize. Throughout the last several decades, Carol Lynn has highlighted the richness available in Mormon theology, art, music, and history. In many ways, she is the church's modern Eliza Snow.Now, Ms. Pearson has turned her gifted writing capacity to bear on one of the most intractable and confounding components of Mo [...]

    21. I really wish I could differentiate between *quality of book* (2-3) and *value/importance of book* (5) in my star rating. This book is essential. As a former [very active] Mormon, who has a close and personal family experience with polygamy, and as the daughter of parents who firmly believe in the doctrine of "eternal" polygamy, I can unequivocally state that it is a tragically damaging and dangerous concept--one that does "haunt the hearts of Mormon women and men." It brings darkness.I believe [...]

    22. I love Carolyn Pearson. The first book I picked up of hers was a small fable for our times called The Lesson. At the time I had no idea who she was, what else she'd written or her story. I was so naive to so much of Mormon culture and famous people when I went to BYU! Now of course, I've read so many things by her and about her. She feels like a wonderful example of what a woman in the church can be. She talks about herself being a "tribe elder" and I would totally agree. She talks about being p [...]

    23. It is hard to rate this book for me because Carol Lynn Pearson is such an inspiring writer, and like a poet expresses herself in beautiful words and language. For that part of the book it is at least a 4 star if not more. I like myself better after reading this book. She made me think about the worth of questioning and looking for answers, for forgiving myself for not being perfect, and genuinely liking people just because God loves us, each and every one of us, sinner or saint.I liked how she t [...]

    24. In the way that only Carol Lynn Pearson can, this book delves into polygamy both past and present and how it affects women and men today. She deftly explains the ins and outs of polygamy from the past in the LDS Church as well as the present. Many times in Mormonism we talk about not practicing polygamy anymore. Pearson puts forth all of the evidence for how polygamy is still not only practiced (both in the eternal sense as well as due to current sealing policies), but how harmful it is being en [...]

    25. The best part of this book is where Carol shared excerpts of Mormon women's feelings about Polygamy. They echo my own problems I had with Polygamy, as I questioned how such a backward principle could have ever been inspired by God. Carol gives way more love to Joseph Smith than I do, and so a Mormon women can still feel comfortable reading this book. I've always been bothered by the church trying to distance themselves from a practice that was actually a fundamental part of our foundation. You c [...]

    26. "-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, and dismiss whatever insults your own soul". - Walt WhitmanWhat I loved about this book is that Pearson was able to do this without throwing Joseph Smith under the bus. The first 3/4 was hard (but compelling) to read, but she shows a way forward that is full of hope and faith and love. I feel like I have been waiting to read this book since I was in seminary and first learned about polygamy.

    27. No one can broach a touchy subject as well as Carol Lynn Pearson. She writes is such a beautiful and sensitive way, while still managing to be forthright. I love the way she approached polygamy, marrying (no pun intended) history, modern day views, and her own issues with the troubling element of Mormonism. If Carol Lynn can make amends with our past, I feel that I can too.

    28. Very interesting book. The author surveyed LDS women about the effect that past teachings on polygamy & current sealing practices have on them today. It's a tough subject, but I think she approaches it well. She tells her story, shares comments collected from her survey and ends with her vision for a better way forward. Very thought-provoking. Glad I read it.

    29. A lot to mull over concerning polygamy. An important book that covers a difficult topic. Pearson is a believing Mormon who is definitely not afraid to rock the boat when it needs a good rocking. It's going to take me a while to process it all.

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