About

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20 thoughts on “About”

  1. jasonford818 said:

    I came to the about page to see who the person is that is posting to this site. I wanted to see who is pointing fingers and mocking from the tower. But I see they do not want to come forth at this time with their real name or any personal information. I don’t think I would want to put my name and face to this blog ether.

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    • I understand that he has a number of passionate followers, and sometimes it makes sense to protect oneself from those. I have tried to keep the discussion focused on the facts of what he has actually said, and close reading of his products, and I don’t think that I would have written it any differently if it were public. If you see any factual errors in anything I have written, I would be grateful if you would point them out to me.

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    • i always viewed John Dehlin as the one standing in the great and spacious building, mocking those on the path.

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  2. This reeks of Greg Smith or little Stevie Smoot. LOL

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  3. Ya. Pretty obsessive and one has to wonder how much of that is motivated by vindictiveness rather than some sense of proportion or the common good.

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    • I think this is in the interest of the common good. We’ll just have to see how it plays out I suppose. I hope I’m not vindictive. If I discover that I am at any point I will try to fix it.

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  4. I see that the site’s tag line has been changed. No more “[s]uggestions for John Dehlin for a better life.” Why?

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    • I received some reports that some readers felt that it was in some ways too condescending. I thought about it, concluded that they had a legitimate point, and made the change, I may fine tune it a bit, but it is a little bit more descriptive of the focus of this particular blog project. Most of the posts are analysis of documents commentary. While I do try and bring out the lessons that I see in the various situations because I think it’s worthwhile and even essential to learn from the world around us and the situations we encounter, the main point of the blog is not to tell someone how to live their life, hence the new description line.

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      • Can you explain why you started this blog? How long do you anticipate posting?

        Thank you.

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      • I would probably have to go back and read my own journal to determine what finally motivated me to do this. I think part of it was probably the feeling that a lot of non-sense had been promoted by him around the time of the Kelly discipline, and I realized that if he wasn’t ever really held accountable for his actions, he could more or less claim whatever he wanted to about the Church and various individuals and damage it and them with impunity, which would allow him over time to do a great deal of damage.

        As for your second question of how long I anticipate posting, some people believe he will fade into irrelevance like most others have who have been excommunicated. He even makes some statements that indicate that he has some expectation of that happening. I don’t agree. Instead, I think he will continue to court attention form time to time on Mormon topics, and I expect to continue to post on an ongoing basis as issues come up that he is involved in. I expect that this will be more sporadic after the disciplinary hearing waves recede, but his plans as he has outlined them in, say, his 2015 end of the year update suggest to me that this will be an ongoing project.

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  5. I am not a “passionate follower” of John Dehlin’s and stumbled upon your blog while trying to educate myself about the controversy surrounding him at this time. After reading your blog, I was very disappointed to find that you’ve chosen to take the easy path and just hide.

    Considering your blog is devoted toward the character assassination of an individual willing to lay everything on the line to make public his opinions, I find it interesting that you are not willing to do the same. Shouldn’t you at least give John the courtesy of knowing who is attacker is?

    If the answer is no, maybe you’ll answer two questions for me.

    1. Are you, or have you ever been, an employee of the LDS Church or it’s private businesses?

    2. Have any Church authorities (ward, stake, or even higher) been in contact with you and offered any input or advise about this blog.

    Thanks in advance…

    Mike Iverson (who IS willing to take credit or blame for his opinions)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mike,
      You asked some good questions. Here’s what I can tell you. First, why anonymity? Some people like fame others don’t. I think it sounds tedious, and would just as soon not become a household name. Second, everyone has to decide how much risk they are willing to assume in a given venture. If you’ve read this post https://dearjohndehlin.wordpress.com/2015/02/12/john-dehlin-and-the-art-of-interpersonal-terrorism/ you can probably see why I wouldn’t choose to put myself in a position where he or his followers could retaliate against me. He has a tendency to act vindictively toward those who disagree with him, and sometimes it just doesn’t make sense to give him that opportunity, or temptation. It is quite true that anonymity has it’s problems too—like having to not discuss your blog or post about it in order to avoid unwanted exposure—among other difficulties. Do you think that it is wrong to hide one’s identity, and protect oneself from an opponent who has a demonstrable willingness to attack others business or otherwise abuse them? Mike, you accuse me of character assassination, but let me ask you something: have you found anything inaccurate or that you believe needs correcting? John has written and done some deeply problematic things, and has not apologized to those he wrote and did them to my knowledge. Do you think it is out of bounds to write about them? Wouldn’t ignoring his mistreatment of others and abuse of the Church be enabling those behaviors? You also had two specific questions:

      1. I am not, nor have I ever been an employee of the LDS Church. I have received no compensation for my writing, and do not expect to receive any, nor do I expect to receive any remunerative benefit from my writing from any party. I also do not expect to receive any non-monetary tangible benefit from this (not inconsiderable) project. I do anticipate some degree of satisfaction and peace of mind in helping some of those who have felt alienated with his discipline to understand that the fact that he has been discipline doesn’t mean there is not a place for them.
      2. As for contact with or advice from Church authorities, I started the blog on my own initiative, my Ward and Stake leaders generally don’t know about it, and haven’t offered any advice, and no known Church authorities have contacted me regarding it. I don’t know who all of the people who have commented (in this case in the sense of the comments section of the blog) are, but if any of them are Church officials they haven’t mentioned the fact. Sufficed to say, this project—the name, the ideas, the research, the writing, and all have been largely a personal endeavor, and haven’t received input from Church officials. Some others have contributed ideas, intelligence, and strategic advice, but I don’t believe any of them are in the employ of the Church either.

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      • I think the February 4, 2015 Patheos post by ‘TT’ gives some good points about being an anonymous blogger:

        http://www.patheos.com/blogs/faithpromotingrumor/2015/02/on-pseudonyms-and-insults/

        It is a very difficult situation to understand. it’s so multidimensional. Thanks for the blog.

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      • Thank you for providing this service. My own research when John started his excommunication journey was difficult because there was so much he and his cronies have written, obfuscated, propagandized, and even removed from so many websites and internet sources that it was hard to keep up. Your blogs are thorough, fair, well-written, and very insightful. Anonymity is in no way a detriment, since your treatment of all things Dehlin has been to show us the evidence and the critical thinking he so much lacks in his own statements and “evidence.” He is a master of using social media, so it only makes sense that someone who also uses it well can do some damage-control. I appreciate your investment of time and thought.

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  6. Dear dearjohndehilin,

    I am very happy to see that you are keeping this record. Thank you. I believe it will be a valuable resource to future historians who will, no doubt, be interested in analyzing this charismatic man and the impact he has had on Mormonism. I believe that in addition to holding Dehlin accountable, it will be valuable to Mormons and former-Mormons who are trying to comprehend current events. It may help them better understand the situation so that they can make less reactive and therefore more effective personal decisions.

    I am especially grateful that you are doing your best to keep this record fact-based; doing so will make a difference because facts prevent polemics from both sides and, when directly linked to evidence, help increase the public’s discernment.

    As conflicts between Mormons who believe and Mormons who don’t believe often devolve into personal attacks and assertions that one’s own belief or disbelief makes one and those who hold similar ideologies to be superior to others, I think it would be best to intentionally maintain as much neutrality in regards to belief as possible in this record. This is especially true considering Dehlin’s history of publicly vacillating through different belief systems. The extent to which you are able to maintain neutrality will impact, in my opinion, the extent to which you are able to help Mormons and former Mormons of many different beliefs comprehend the tactics Dehlin is using to manipulate large groups of people. If your blog takes on a very believing tone, for example, you will be less able to help Mormons and former Mormons who have discarded belief recognize what Dehlin is doing. It is my perspective that these Mormons may need the most help discerning Dehlin’s actions because they believe Dehlin is serving them. They need real help, not necessarily to become Mormon again, in my opinion, but to navigate the crises they are facing without becoming victim to exploitation and further harm.

    I do not believe Dehlin is a sociopath. In addition to being highly manipulative, he can be deeply emotional and empathetic. His compassion for others is very selective, however, and is very much based on meeting his own needs, whatever they happen to be at that moment in time. All of that said, his interactions with people very much resemble Frank Underwood’s from House of Cards. Watching Underwood manipulate people for his own gain and, specifically, get good people to sacrifice themselves altruistically in order to benefit Underwood has helped me better understand the way Dehlin operates. I wonder if thinking about Dehlin that way would help you better gather and present evidence. If these types of actions are exposed, you may help protect many good people who Dehlin will no doubt try to exploit in the future.

    Again (sorry to be didactic and repetitive), please keep everything fact-based; facts are the only way to win in this case because Dehlin will sequentially change his presentation of facts from day-to-day by intentionally promoting facts that best serve him and downplaying facts that detract from his current causes. You will do great service by using facts, facts, facts to point this out whenever and wherever you can.

    Again, thank you. This is a very important record to keep. Dehlin has confused and harmed many people who are in crisis. It is difficult to watch when one knows what is going on. A clear presentation of facts is the way to end that harm. You may end up helping many people. You are a good samaritan.

    I agree that it is a good idea to not share your name in order to protect yourself from John’s retaliations. If he becomes aware of who you are, he will likely try to restrict your access to information and will possibly even attempt to get others to harass you in order to make it less possible for you to continue in this endeavor.

    You have my best…….. be brave.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh…. and I just finished watching season 2 of House of Cards. When I compared Dehlin to the character (above) I wasn’t thinking of Underwood’s murders, etc. in season 1 and the beginning of season 2 . I would like to clarify. I am not trying to say that Dehlin is guilty of such extremities. I do not believe that to be true and feel bad for making such public insinuations. (Thus this second comment.)

      The Underwood that reminds me of Dehlin is the Underwood at the end of season 2 who strategically manipulates several people in order to gain the presidency. As I watched Underwood talk characters into taking actions that would benefit him, I kept thinking ‘Dehlin’ ‘Dehlin’ ‘Dehlin’. It’s no accident that Dehlin is studying psychology. He knows how to work people to get what he wants.

      Walter White’s (Breaking Bad) ability to strategically lie in order to manipulate other characters into behaving as he’d like reminds me of Dehlin, too, but Dehlin is not a murderous drug lord, of course.

      Both Underwood and White intentionally speak and act for the purpose of strategically coordinating others’ emotions and behaviors. So does Dehlin. Both leave a lot of collateral damage in their wakes. So does Dehlin. That’s why this blog is important and is a service to the Mormon and former Mormon communities. Dehlin’s actions affect thousands and thousands of people. Many have been harmed and many will continue to be harmed until Dehlin is held accountable for his manipulations and people on all sides see him for who he really is.

      I predict that in the next little while Dehlin might emotionally acknowledge some of his wrongs and ask the public for forgiveness. I would like to see him be forgiven for his actions and again be accepted and awarded the compassion due a repentant sinner, but I am concerned because he uses collective sympathy and false apologies to manipulate people’s emotions for the purpose of benefitting himself. He also has a history of publicly admitting wrong without taking actions to remediate the harm done to individuals behind the scenes demonstrating that his repentances are false manipulations of public emotion. He’s a tough nut to crack. Emotional apologies are meaningless when a person behaves cyclically and each apology is followed by the behaviors that preceded it and then another apology. Dehlin will display morality when he quietly takes care of his family and no longer makes loud public statements to manipulate large groups of people. He needs a solid day job.

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      • I agree with you, A……..[.] One of my hopes with this project, and maybe it errs on the side of optimism, but whatever, is to create enough accountability that honesty becomes the most advantageous course of action. I appreciate your clarifications, though I didn’t read your previous post as an accusation of murder; only of manipulation. Nevertheless, I admire a commitment to clarity, and also your insight into the situation.

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  7. It’s super Christ-like to create a blog to criticize someone else’s life.

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