There is a thriving shame culture in the world today. The shame culture is cancer and sadly, it has infected in many aspects Mormon culture. Having lived in the South, I experienced persecution for being a member of the Church. However, nowhere have I experienced more shame and persecution than by members of the Church. Like the olive tree overtaken with wild branches, Mormon culture has been overpowered and corrupted by the shame culture. Elder Christofferson gave a great talk on this very subject. It is time for us to realize that aspects of Mormon culture are really aspects of the shame culture. I want to outline four aspects of Mormon culture that have been corrupted.
1st. The Caste System Within Mormon Culture.
One of the first things the shame culture does is feed one’s pride. It does this by categorizing everyone and creating a caste system so to speak. (A caste system is a class system). A few examples of caste distinctions we often make include:
- Pioneer Stock vs. Converts
- Early RM’s vs. RM’s
- Single vs. Married
- Large Families vs. Small Families
I could go on and on about the growing caste system within Mormonism.
We even do this with the leadership of the Church. We want to idolize them as more than men. One time I was doing an endowment at the Salt Lake Temple and Elder Christofferson sat right in front of me! And then Steve Young sat right next to me. I made a comment about how cool it was to do an endowment with Elder Christofferson. Steve Young turned to me and said, “He is just a man, as normal as me or you.”
It was humbling to see that to Steve Young, an Apostle, an NFL Super Star, and a single 24-year-old Mormon were all the same. His words reminded me that in the Kingdom of God, there are no caste systems! Each of us is a child of God with the potential to become like Him.