Hell is Other Family Members

Stephen Fry tells the story of his close encounter with the Mormon Church.

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Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

0 thoughts on “Hell is Other Family Members

  1. Just a late thought or two . . .

    I’ve been telling this story to people, doing my best Fry impression (which ain’t bad) and they all love it.

    How far back does the "extended family with you forever" go? I know you can have your ancestors certified as Mormon by the church — they have been a blessing to genealogy researchers through the information the church provides for this purpose.

    Far enough back, though, isn’t everyone related? Would you draw the line at your great-grandfather? Wouldn’t he wan’t HIS great-grandfather included? All the way back to the first Neanderthal/Sapiens crossbreeds? Well, THEY’d want their family to enjoy eternal life, too. Most reasonably intelligent mammals have affection for their kin. Maybe you could draw the line at sharks or eels.

    Fry’s probably wrong on the appeal being to women, unless that part of Mormon doctrine was developed fairly recently (I’m no expert.) If it dates back to Smith or Brigham Young, it was probably just a way of legitimizing polygamy. And polygamy makes a kind of sense, for a persecuted minority — it creates more children. Although I suspect Smith just wanted to keep marrying younger wives. (Something Mohammed has been accused of, but marriages among tribal cultures are often about creating alliances, not sex.)

    Anyhoo, it’s classic Fry. He’s such a treasure.

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