Burned at the Stake…Who’s Next?


On Feb 17, 1600, Giordano Bruno was burned at the stake.  This scientist and philosopher was accused of heresy by the Catholic Inquisition in Rome.  He refused to recant his belief that the earth was not the center of the universe.  His teaching that our planet rotates around the sun was in direct contradiction to the Vatican.

The Survey Says…

A couple of weeks ago, I posted a survey entitled, “Is Sam Young Racist?” Every question represented beliefs that I actually espoused for 62 years of my life. The survey results:   69% believe I’m racist.   31% say I’m not.

BTW, I no longer believe anything on that list.

Questioning Strangers

Over the past 2 weeks, I have privately posed my survey questions to several people who are not familiar with Mormon beliefs. I asked them to answer as if these were MY beliefs.  Without exception, every single person had a similar reaction to the following question:

Am I racist if, I BELIEVE that a person with brown skin will turn white when they become “righteous?”

They either laughed at the absurdity or scrunched their face in disgust. Then they said something like this, “I’ll pray for your soul.”

Who’s Next?

For most of my life, I believed the “Indians” would turn white if they joined the Mormon Church and lived righteously.  I can remember a prophet, Spencer W. Kimball, making the observation that a child in the Indian Placement program had become “several shades lighter than her parents.”  And, that “these young members of the Church are changing to whiteness and delightsomeness.”

Well…..I don’t believe that anymore.  At best, it’s metaphor.  The skin color of native Americans is gorgeous.  Just the way God created it to be.

To say this in public, might be heresy in my church.  A church that I love.  If I suffer the same fate as Bruno, my white skin is be about to turn several shades darker.

11 thoughts on “Burned at the Stake…Who’s Next?

  1. Read Mark Twain’s short story “Captain Stormfield’s Visit to Heaven”.
    He discusses the hereafter, and how few of us White Chosen People there will be compared to how many billions and billions of darker-skinned humans were on the earth since the beginning of time. We came onto the scene VERY late in the history of the Earth, and he alludes to the possibility that we would wander around heaven for a few thousand years before we would ever see another white man… 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I remember a beautiful young Hispanic woman standing in Stake Conference many years ago and reading the quote from Pres. Kimball. Even then she believed that it was an analogy meaning that she would or could one day glow in a light of righteousness. I don’t know if I ever believed that she or any of my Hispanic brothers and sisters would turn white one day. But I do know that there were those who believed it was going to happen. There is a wonderful video put out by the Genesis Society about the journey of the blacks in the Church. It is an amazingly well put together film. In the film, a black mother and daughter who were members of the church from southern California told the story of when they went through the LA Temple for the first time and how there were many members of their ward present for this ordinance. When it was over and they were in the dressing rooms, one member of the ward came and threw her arms around the daughter. She proceeded to say, ” When we meet in heaven beyond the veil, please come to me and tell me who you are. I doubt that I will remember you when you are WHITE.” Yes, there is ignorance in the church that has gone on for way too long, however, I don’t think the sister who said the stupid remark meant it in any way but with love. I believe we are all going to be overwhelmed with our stupidity some day. We need to get past the “Mormon Culture” and understand the “Mormon Doctrine”.


    1. The problem with passing it off as stupidity is that it was the doctrine passed through to your church by supposed prophets. Prophets are supposed to speak for God — per Deutoronomy, if they are wrong they are not prophets and should be put to death.

      Mormon doctrine has been racist since its founding and somehow people just say “Ha, Ha — mark of Cain equals black people according to the ones who are supposed to speak for God — that was silly. ” Since way, way back, at least the 70’s we no longer believe that anymore….no go away and don’t ask any hard questions.

      If that is not true – and it so obviously not — how do you trust anything?

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Bruno was not killed for his rejection of Copernican heliocentrism. He propagated his theories that Satan was destined to be saved and redeemed by God, that Jesus was not the son of God but rather “an unusually skilled magician” and rejected the virginity of Mary – all of which he did as a Catholic priest in the Dominican order.


  4. I think that many in the church today don’t even know about the teachings on this topic by President Kimball. Nor do they know he counceled against any mixed-race marriage. But he wasn’t as hard on the topic as Brigham Young was (and even fewer know of this)
    “Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to the African race? If the white man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so.” Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 10, p. 110

    What the leadership wants is for you to only read the current correlated manuals and not even talk about what past leaders have said. Even on this topic we see in 1981 some verses in the Book of Mormon changed from “white and delightsome” to “pure and delightsome” and then in 2010 some changes to the chapter summaries from calling Lamanites “a dark, filthy, and loathsome people” to “because of their unbelief, the Lamanites will be scattered, and the Spirit will cease to strive with them.”

    And like most Mormons, I don’t think you are racist (not more than everyone in the world is at a certain level). But I do think most (white?) Mormons have a bit of a thought in the back of their head of some status for being white.


  5. Greetings, Sam. I found your blog while listening to your Mormon Stories interview with John, which I found fascinating. I posted the following response on Mormon Stories. I don’t know if it will survive John’s moderation, so I will also post it here where I am sure you will see it.

    ======== verbatim Mormon Stories post ===========

    My Dear Sam,

    Cudos to you for your forthright candor and refreshing honesty.

    I will be honest as well and observe that some of your logical processes are exhibiting evidence of the unavoidable brain damage that happens to lifelong Mormons who fully immerse themselves in the systemic mind-control brainwash so skillfully administered by The Brethren. What they are doing to the members is intentional and premeditated, while members have no clue that The Brethren are playing the members like violins skillfully tuned for a lifetime of pay, pray and obey.

    In all fairness and due respect, Sam, you (and John as well) are freshly into your healing and recovery processes. Your brains will more fully heal and recover slowly over time. I myself have been out for 36 years by now, and my brain is nearly fully recovered (or so I tell myself . . . or more probably, I am still deluded).

    Eventually you may come to this conclusion: If history shows that Joseph intentionally lied about many, if not most, if not all of the founding fundamentals of the Mormon Church, then it logically follows that most, if not virtually everything about the Mormon Church is fundamentally untrue at best, and spiritually, socially, emotionally and financially stunting and harmful to the members at worst.

    Sam, I am sure that John can fully resonate with your sentiments to stay in the Church with the intention of improving it. You will eventually discover that The Brethren have no interest in your interest … as in no interest whatsoever. Why not just walk away and allow them to self-destruct under the weight of their own Spiritual Dwarfism?

    You and your loved ones deserve better than to continue to associate with the very antithesis of your personal core values, Sam.

    Please hear this plain and simple truth: The personal core values of The Brethren are diametrically opposite to your personal core values, Sam. Never in a million years would you remotely consider doing to your fellow human beings what The Brethren routinely do to the members of the Church … to whom they publicly feign love and service.

    Here is a piece of counsel you can use for the rest of your life: If you want to understand someone’s motives, completely IGNORE their words, as in everything they say. Talk is cheap. Liars talk all day. Instead of listening to their words, focus entirely on their ACTIONS. Behaviors do not lie. Behaviors are driven by a person’s core values. Behaviors tell the truth that crafty words endeavor to conceal.

    With The Brethren, focus on their behaviors. How do they treat members who do not fully conform to the pay, pray, obey brainwash programming? Your gut will guide you, Sam. When you have a gut response to what The Brethren DO while ignoring what they say, you are seeing clearly.

    I wish you all the best! Thank you again for the courage to share your story.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Careful, asking those questions… You may indeed be “Burned at the Stake (Center)?”

    Bonus Question: “SMORGASBORD GOSPEL,” who coined this term?
    Who “Smorgasbords” more? Is it LDS members, or LDS Leaders?
    What are the most important Commandments? “Follow the Prophet?” “Obedience?” “Don’t question Church or Leaders?” You can get excommunicated for those 3. So, are they the most important commandments?

    What about when some “commandments” contradict other Commandments, or contradict Christ?
    Can we follow commandments to “not follow Commandments?”
    Would we be blessed more for Obedience?
    What do we do?
    Can we serve two masters?
    How did we get here from there?
    Can a house divided against itself stand?

    Are WE choosing, or are we consenting for our leaders choosing for us, to “Smorgasbord” the Law of Common Consent, and other selected Laws and Commandments, right off of Christ’s menu? Are we commanded to give consent for whatever our leaders choose for us, lest we be shamed, shunned, punished? Do we Consent that this is Christ’s way?

    Do Christ’s top Commandments get over-trodden when we get stuck in letter of the law commandments (the manner of Sadducees, Scribes, Pharasees and The High Priest) and sign over our Common Consent (our agency and our own accountability) to our leaders as the “true followers of the official church God loved most” did in the Book of Luke?

    Does punishment, shaming and shunning for opposing, questioning or testing go against Christ’s Law of Common Consent?

    Do we follow Christ’s, Alma’s and Moroni’s Commands to question and test all things and everyone, to discern Truth? Or, do we instead obey the commandment to follow leaders first, obediently, to never question, to seek only their consent, and approval? John 12: 42-43? Helaman 3:34-35?

    President Hinckley said, “The proud wish God would agree with them. They aren’t interested in changing their opinions to agree with God’s (Even to contradict His Laws with new laws, or the saints consenting to that?)” Proverbs 16:18? John 11: 45-54? Nephi 16:2? Alma 12:10-11?

    Remember the LDS Hymn, “Who’s On the Lord’s Side?”
    Will we follow Christ, Satan or… “Could it beeee… Saint’n?”

    Liked by 1 person

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