While Mormons are a part of the Christian community, some people see their belief system as a bit outlandish and strange. From the undergarments to the concerns over polygamy Mormons have a hard time constantly defending their religion when everyone is ready to attack it.
The goal of this article is to provide no-biased information about different Mormon rules, what they are, and why they follow them. We’re not here to bash or ridicule anyone who is Mormon, far from it. Our intention is to provide the most accurate information for educational purposes only.
Mormon Appearance Guidelines
The first Mormon rules we want to look at are their guidelines pertaining to their appearance. There’s nothing outlandish or too out of the ordinary here.
When it comes to clothing, Mormons dress similar to how we should as Christians. Keep in mind that they follow the same biblical principles as us so they’re still instructed to dress modestly.
Women do not show a large amount of skin, they don’t wear anything low cut, and they always make sure that they’re representing the Church in a positive light. They don’t do this because they think they’re better than others, they simply believe in dressing in a way that doesn’t draw male attention.
Men dress however they like for the most part but are also told to represent the Church in a positive way. You won’t find Mormons dressed in clothing that is obscene, violent, or gorey in any way. Instead, Mormon men dress modestly as well.
The only exception to the rules here is if the person is a full-time missionary. These men and women follow much stricter guidelines and are required to dress in a full suit or dress at all times.
The big question on everyone’s mind pertains to the popular undergarments that Mormons wear. Only adults wear these and they don’t start wearing them until they make a formal declaration of their dedication to Jesus in the Temple. Once they do this, they’ll receive their undergarments and will wear them at all times outside of swimming, exercising, and having sex.
The garments are not there to protect the person from evil spirits or anything like that, these are all myths and most Mormons take great offense to it because these garments are an important piece of their faith.
They exist to remind the Mormon of their faith. Each time they put them on, they’re reminded that they made a commitment to God and they don’t want to break that. The clothing is a spiritual reminder of their faith and that they need to take actions everyday to protect themselves from sin.
Women are taught to wear their hair in a way that doesn’t draw attention. This means no bright colors, no strange hairstyles, and nothing that will shine a negative light on the Church community.
The same Mormon rules apply to the men. Men are taught to wear their hair neatly, clean, and in a mature fashion. No mohawks, spikes, or fully bald heads are recommended.
For those men and women who are full-time missionaries, they follow stricter guidelines. They must keep their hair up in a way that doesn’t draw attention and men are required to keep their hair neat and cannot have sideburns that extend past the middle of their ears.
Women are allowed to wear makeup and there aren’t any specific guidelines explaining how much or how they can wear it. It’s important to understand that none of these rules are set in stone and all Mormons can essentially dress how they want and do what they want. These are mere recommendations set forth by the Church and most men and women happily comply.
Tattoos and Piercings
Mormons believe that your body is a gift from God so you should not disfigure yourself in any way. This closely mimics what most Christians believe and the Bible tells us the same. Our body is God’s temple so we shouldn’t do anything to it that is irreversible or that changes our appearance.
As for tattoos, it’s not said that you can’t have them but the Church recommends against them. The main reason they do so is because so many people get tattoos that don’t have any type of meaning and many of them incite violence or stand for things that the Church does not. If you decide to get a tattoo it is recommended that you get something relating to your faith or something that is non-violent.
Having a tattoo will hurt your chances of ever going on a mission as well. While it doesn’t say that you’re not allowed to have one, it is greatly frowned upon by the community.
Many of the same rules apply for piercings. For women, they are allowed to have your normal piercings but are told to do so in a way that doesn’t draw attention. Big hoop earrings and piercings in places other than the ears are generally frowned upon. As with most Church communities, they are starting to become more accepting of things that are popular in today’s culture but have still done a nice job of keeping a handle on trends and helping the community understand the reasons behind the seemingly strict rules.
Can Mormons Drink Alcohol?
In the Mormon doctrine, the Word of Wisdom instructs them to abstain from consuming alcohol. Just as they are told to stay away from drugs and anything else that would alter their state, it’s simply a means of preserving the body God gave you, only putting the best into it, and trying not to escape from reality at any time. It is considered a sin to consume alcohol.
Can Mormons Drink Coffee?
Mormons are also instructed to abstain from excessive caffeine consumption. This primarily applies to coffee. Mormons do not drink coffee or tea and they cannot use tobacco products either. As for the coffee consumption, we’re really not sure why this is because it doesn’t apply to the “changing your state” argument or anything like that. It’s simply something that their biblical doctrine states and as a result, they follow it.
Growing up as a Mormon
Life as a Mormon child can be a great one because one of the most central staples of a Mormon household is caring for the children. They hold “old school” values as many would describe them and believe that children are important and giving them the best life possible is their central goal.
Growing up as a child in a Mormon household means a lot of quality time with the family, typically patient parents, and a lot of activities that involve the Mormon community. In this section, we’re taking a look at some of the Mormon rules that may apply to children or teenagers.
Can Mormons Kiss? Hold Hands? Hug?
Once again, much of Mormonism and Christianity overlap so there are some things here that apply to Christians as well. In fact, Mormons are Christians, they just do certain things in a different way.
When it comes to kissing, they have a very specific set of guidelines to follow if they’re not married. It’s called the “passionate kissing” before marriage. It essentially allows Mormon kids and teenagers to kiss as long as there is no passion, it doesn’t last too long, and there is no tongue involved.
They believe that kissing for too long, grabbing or groping, or using tongue will excite passion which could lead to more. As for a standard “run-of-the-mill” kiss, they actually allow that which is somewhat surprising.
Hugging and holding hands is also allowed following the same guidelines. There is to be no excessive touching or anything that could excite passion between the two. It is meant to be as innocent as possible.
Dating as a Mormon
Whether you’re thinking of dating a Mormon or you’re a Mormon yourself, there are some rules that you’ll have to follow. There’s nothing out of the ordinary here and it’s honestly what you would expect from a community that tries to preserve children’s innocence and save all the joys of marriage for when they’re actually married.
Here are some general rules when dating as a Mormon:
- Have a chaperone or date in groups
- Only date people with high moral standards
- No dating before age 16
- No sex before marriage
- Avoid frequent dates with the same person
The ultimate goal of these rules is to ensure that you’re never put in a situation that may lead you to sin. If you date the same person over and over again and you’re spending a lot of time with each other, you might become too comfortable which can lead to experimentation, and you get the point.
Also, even though kissing is considered okay, a lot of Mormons choose not to kiss until they are in a committed relationship or engaged.
At What Age Can Mormons Marry?
Mormons are allowed to marry at any age they want and they typically marry younger than the rest of the population. This happens because Mormon men are expected to become a full-time missionary at the age of 18. This lasts for a number of months and typically following the mission is when the men come home and attempt to find a wife.
Of course when you follow the rules that the Bible teaches us, marrying young doesn’t sound like a bad thing because it allows you to still fulfill God’s will while also having the freedom to be with your partner the way you want to be. That is the primary reason why most people get married young.
How Do Mormons View Divorce?
This is one area where things get interesting. So, divorce is considered a necessary evil in the Mormon Church and they do believe in annulment and everything that goes along with it. But, Mormons actually have two weddings.
They have a “normal” wedding where they can invite their friends and family and have food, cake, etc. But, they then have the sealing of their marriage at the temple and this is one thing that separates Mormonism from the rest of the Christian community.
Mormons believe in celestial marriage which means that once a marriage is sealed in the Church, it can never be broken, even with divorce. The marriage lasts forever and even remains in the afterlife.
So, this would mean that if a person was to get a divorce and remarry that they would have two sealed marriages and would go into the afterlife with two wives.
Do Mormons Still Practice Polygamy?
That brings us to our final point. According to the LDS Church, they renounced the practice of polygamy in 1890 but this is where we reach a major contradiction. Even though they don’t practice polygamy, the sealing of marriages says otherwise. As part of their ceremony, the marriage is said to last forever, even in the afterlife. So, if a man marries, divorces, and marries again that would mean that he has two wives.
The polygamy that you’re thinking of still happens in places and is a part of the Mormon community but most families and Temple communities no longer take part in this.
What’s interesting is that the initial founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith was assassinated in 1845. Following that, Brigham Young brought polygamy into the mainstream and it was actually part of the core doctrine of the religion through the late 1800’s. At this time, as much as 30% of Mormon households practiced it.
In 1887 the United States congress passed the Edmunds-Tucker Act which seized LDS Church assets and made polygamy a federal offense. Many polygamists broke away and went into hiding and to this day, Mormon fundamentalists still practice polygamy all throughout the country.
There are many Mormon rules that guide the way they think, act, eat, and live but none of them stray too far from what we all believe as Christians. We all believe in living a modest and honest life that glorifies Christ. If you can forget about the polygamy, Mormons aren’t that different than anyone else.