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February 22, 2010

Let’s have some fun

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 8:41 am

Hopefully without beating a dead horse, I want to play with the Mormonism/Happiness thing a bit more before moving on.  Judging by the declining amount of comments and voting, the viewing populace either agrees with me, is bored, or doesn’t want to get in to it.  Therefore, I shall chose to believe that you are persuaded and I can go on to having some fun with the assertions.

Seeing as Mormonism has invested so much brand identity in being the most effective happiness promoting mechamism out there (but doesn’t seem to actually be), they will be in the market for some new branding ideas.  Ever the helpful one, I am ready to combine google image search with Microsoft Paintbrush and rise to the occasion:

 

Do you like me? Circle one and put it in my locker.

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6 Comments

  1. I haven’t yet weighed in on this matter, but I would prefer the first shirt. However, since we are having some fun here, I would alter the wording slightly to say “In ways undetectable by Matthew’s research.” :) As I think you have pointed out a number of times, happiness is very hard to measure.

    Comment by Art — February 23, 2010 @ 5:53 am

  2. That’s a fair enough observation.

    I’m curious to see your views on the earlier posts in this series and to understand what definition of happiness you would advance that could be supported by data and reconciled to the existing measure which do not correlate to the presence of Mormonism.

    I’m not sure if you are the person who voted for the option, but I would really like to hear from someone who would advocate that happiness data does correlate to Mormonism, particularly the data explored to date on this blog. I really don’t see how one could argue that *this* data correlates to Mormonism, so perhaps the person who voted for that was referring to some other data set or other definition of happiness.

    It seems to me to be a rather clear math question that *this* data doesn’t correlate…

    Comment by Matthew — February 23, 2010 @ 10:42 am

  3. It wasn’t me, I haven’t voted for anything yet.

    I am still sort of stuck back on the initial proposition. I was thinking of going through “Preach My Gospel” and seeing how the present missionary approach deals with the subject of happiness. The idea that Mormonism will make you happy appears to be a logical conclusion, since God loves us and wants us to be happy, but that it in this life will make you happier than anything else you could be doing–I’m not sure is a defensible message. We talk a lot about the distinction between lasting happiness versus temporary happiness. Temporary happiness could still last for quite a long time and be very common, diluting the signal from lasting happiness. One of my favorite scriptures on this subject is Malachi 3:14-17. I see Mormonism, because its goal is to bring people to Christ, as a PATH TO happiness, and because it has the saving ordinances of the gospel, will lead to sure happiness in the life to come. Are people “on the path” already there?

    So, maybe a new t-shirt slogan: “Mormonism: the path to happiness”. I think this may be more consistent with the scriptures and what the church is actually saying.

    Comment by Grandpa Art — February 24, 2010 @ 4:25 am

  4. @Art – I am very interested in seeing any official pronouncements disputing the basis case of this argument. I think that would be very illuminating. As a parallel, this series of posts focuses on things that I was taught as doctrine in order to qualify in the basis. That being said, I don’t mind shifting to a dispassionate discussion of Mormon official stances, particularly since I did make some comments about those early on in response to Cris. If I misrepresented anything there, it would be best to correct that. Would you think it is likely that most members would agree intuitively with the basis case as you have described it in your post?

    I’m intrigued at your text: “…in this life will make you happier than anything else you could be doing–I’m not sure is a defensible message. ” This is basically my point, so I look forward to your take on the matter. I hope we don’t end up with the unfalsifiable proposition that Mormonism is an under-performing earthlife happiness promoter, but pulls ahead in the after life. Even if we do end up there, that certainly has implications for the Church marketing department =) In that case, the second shirt might be best, perhaps with the prefix “In this life…”

    As far as your proposed shirt edit, I would suggest that having it say “Mormonism: a path to happiness” seems to be more in line with the tentative postulate in your comment. That being the case, we do need to come up with some kind of testable assertion under which Mormonism could be evaluated. If Mormonism does promote a result, we can then compare the effectiveness of doing so, the cost of the mechanism, etc. Otherwise we have a non-falsifiable proposition on our hands, which is a whole different ballgame.

    Otherwise, the link between happiness and Mormonism would be a matter of faith. Nothing wrong with that, of course, but it is a very different proposition to say ‘I have faith that Mormonism does X’, than to say ‘Mormonism does X.’

    Comment by Matthew — February 24, 2010 @ 6:56 am

  5. ummm….I was the vote you saw…I think I remember thinking it would be funny to screw with your voting system. It all seems so fuzzy in the light of day :)

    Comment by Terra — February 24, 2010 @ 9:05 am

  6. How dare you feed my poll false data you scallywag. A pox on your house.

    Comment by admin — February 24, 2010 @ 1:33 pm

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