p. 31. `A wife feels that her husband is taking on a second wife …. .. can wickedness be claimed.’ This savors strongly of unrighteous dominion to me, not only for the husband taking the second wife in wickedness but in maintaining that this kind of power structure is valid.
p. 31. As far as a vow of exclusivity goes, doesn’t conventional sealing under the presumed expectation of monogamy and according to the law of the land which prohibits bigamy constitute such a vow implicitly?
p. 32. As far as two non-overlapping sets of keys goes, it seems like a false dichotomy. Both sets of keys have application in and out of this world. (I should point out, I suppose, that I believe that a woman holds the priesthood by virtue of the temple, so I also don’t really buy the stewardship/concern sex division.)
p. 35. I believe those nine states make it a felony, not a crime. It’s a crime pretty much everywhere in the U.
p. 36. “Unlicensed marriages are ordained of God” is easily the strongest section in the whole chapter, and on the firmest ground as far as I stand.
p. 39. This section seems very confrontational and antagonistic, which doesn’t seem like the best way to start out a tribe. Maybe use it as an appendix?
p. 40. I believe that sealings for polygamist fundamentalists are currently banned even vicariously by the church, for what it’s worth. That presumably will change in the Millennium.
General reactions: There is a marked tendency throughout to regard an absence of negative evidence as positive evidence. If the Book of Mormon says that polygyny was revoked, then remarks no further on the subject, it doesn’t automatically mean that it was reinstated.
Although there has been a lot of discussion of the multihusband–multiwife tribe, I do not believe that this arrangement will appeal to most people brought up in the world and church today. It’s too transgressive, and the mores are too deeply ingrained in us, for many of us who want to live a consecrated family life to ever seriously build /that/ kind of tribe. (Although I do believe that as tribes form, future generations could potentially be far more comfortable than we are today.) I personally feel that sibling-based tribes are more palatable, and could effectively provide many of the same resources and stewardship claims without introducing the element of jealousy that is certain to arise with shared spouses (perhaps a GESTAM, sibling-based).
All of that said, it does a lot to distill the M portion of the argument down. I’m still not ready to run it past my wife, if you know what I mean, and I think the model needs the refinement that time will bring, but you’ve done an excellent job putting together the sort of radical social model that could successfully counteract the world’s toxic influences and decaying culture, preparing us a little more for the practical Zion.
Ascentury – this feed-back is great to have. Thanks for putting in the time to read through the chapter and give your thoughts. I’ll reply to a couple of your points that I think could bring on a good conversation on the subject:
And on the next page, `the sealing power only affects the afterlife, not the here and now’ implies that a sealed marriage is not quantitatively different from an unsealed marriage, which I’m not certain is true either
To my knowledge, marriage is used in this statement according to the principle of, “equal in the bonds of all things” – which would include marital bonds.