I ran into an acquaintance the other day whose family knows some of the big muckety-mucks in the Mormon hierarchy. Well, in this case they know someone who is part of the caretaking of the casinos "the church" owns in Vegas . . . [yeah, the LDS church has long been involved with the mob and such owning and running casinos there--you see, it doesn't matter where the money comes from, so long as a healthy 10% tithe is the result for the "building up of the kingdom."
Anyway, they told me that their friend related how they have developed a special, psychotropic olfactory-based "gas" or scent they pump into the casinos to create a slight atmosphere of euphoria. In essence, they "drug" the air . . . so that the patrons feel good and want to stay, stay un-anxious while losing money, and continue to fork it over into the slots and gaming tables as long as possible.
But that is not the whole of it. . . . This person said they also use this airborne euphoric tranquilizer in the big 1.4 million sq.ft. Conference Center in downtown Salt Lake. The Center hold over 21,000 church members who dutifully arrive two times a year for "conference"--the "gathering of the saints" . . . along with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and all the General Authorities and "the Prophet". . . .
Of course, it is hearsay, but comes from a reliable source . . . and do I doubt it? No. Which partly explains the giddy, blank and blissed-out expressions I've seen on the faces of those exiting the giant auditorium . . . aside from the humanist pap served verbally there.
But that is certainly not the most dangerous and insidious lure of "the church." The biggest attraction "the church" has . . . is what we call "handouts and hookups." Because it is a works-based religious system . . . and it is generally taught and believed that God blesses His members with material gain and social status . . . the wealth of "the church" is very expertly utilized to buy it's devoted members off. Things will "go well" with you if you join "the church" and obey all the church's commands, callings and overall expectations. They will help you with housing, food and especially connections for employment and insider-info investment opportunities.
Add to this the highly organized and ubiquitous social and community activities and fellowship, and "the church" is a very attractive and seductive lure . . . to the carnal heart. Material security? Hook-ups? Endless social engagements/activities? Political, social and ecclesiastical status? "For sure!" says the worldly-minded who lives the "pride of life" and "lust of the flesh."
Not only that, but there is the promise that you will get to be with your family forever AND be a god of your own planet to boot! (Not to mention, if you are a man, endless sex with multiple goddess-wives, worshipped by your spirit children forever and ever!)
The whole thing is designed to appeal to the exaltation of the self and all its carnal desires--pride, power, sex, autonomy, greed. . . . And what happens is that . . . someone joins "the church"--starts getting "handouts and hookups" and thinks that this sudden material and social boon is a "sign that the church is true" and of God's favor!
Which is why, so many stay in "the church" . . . even though they don't really believe Joseph Smith was a prophet, nor the Book of Mormon the "most correct book on the face of the earth."
Because on the other hand, if you do go "apostate" and leave "the church" . . . your connections, your friends, your family, likely your job and every other membership accoutrement . . . is swiftly taken away--you are shunned and considered a "son of perdition", dangerous to the flock, and so, sent packing.
How much easier to just go along with the program, maintain all the worldly benefits and keep your suspicions and doubt to your self? Which is what many of them do.
Problem is, of course . . . that Jesus says anyone who loves the world--including their family and social status and material securities . . . MORE than Him . . . is not fit for the Kingdom of Heaven.
Jesus did not say . . . that if you follow Him, you will get a good job hookup, inside investment tips, multitudinous adoring friends and family, material security and comfort. No, in fact, He said it is more likely that the world will hate and persecute you. Some, if not a lot, of your friends and family will turn on you, shun you, betray you.
The bottom line question, in this respect, is always, who and what do you love more? Creatures and creature comforts? . . . or Creator? Are you willing to sacrifice everything for the Lord . . . or only so far as your own personal wealth, prestige and security are not touched?
Many are called--they hear the call . . . but few . . . FEW . . . are actually chosen.
"For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit."
“If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple."