The Mormons baptized Gandhi

February 27, 2012 • 6:05 pm

Not satisfied with converting all their ancestors, the Mormons got their sticky hands on the world’s most famous Hindu, Mahatma Gandhi, whose real name was Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (“Mahatma” means “Great Soul,” a nickname coined by Tagore).

HuffPo has the details and proof:

A screen shot of the database page sent to HuffPost by Radkey [Helen Radkey, a former Mormon who researches this stuff] shows a proxy baptism for Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was completed in a Salt Lake City Temple on March 27, 1996. The record has since been removed and Radkey said a subsequent search came up with “Unknown Name.”

A request to a church spokesman for comment on the alleged baptism by proxy of Gandhi was not immediately returned.

Too late—perhaps Gandhi has already doffed his dhoti and is wearing magic Mormon underwear in heaven.

I tell you, that’s one crazy religion.

77 thoughts on “The Mormons baptized Gandhi

    1. Dudeism & Bokononism should merge: “It’s all nonsense, relax Dude(tte).” But parody religions apparently don’t count, only ones with real batshit insane fairy tales do!

        1. Last I checked, the collective is, “bullshit.” As in when the pair of pimply-faced “elders” come knocking on your door, you’re being spammed by a small bullshit of morons.



          1. Oh, come on, I love those guys. So ernest. It is fun to ask them tough questions they haven’t actually thought of yet. The last ones I met said I should pray for an answer to whether Mormonism is true. They seemed perplexed when I pointed out that if Mormonism is true and most Christians pray for guidance on their faith and most Christians are non-Mormons then the guidance prayer gives must be wrong the majority of the time–and that, therefore, statistically everyone should doing the opposite of what prayer tells them to do.

            So, send those missionaries over to me ;->

            1. Just because they make good squeaky toys doesn’t mean they’re not also bullshit-spewing moron spammers…or that you can have mine….

              (Strangely enough, I think I’ve only gotten one pair of Witlesses in the three years I’ve lived here, and they caught me with my hands in the sink or somehow otherwise unable to engage. Ah, well. Probably for the best, all things considered.)


              1. I once had a woman buzz my apartment. She wanted me to invite her up so we could discuss Jesus together. I was working from home and behind schedule so I told her no thanks. I tried to decline politely first, but when she became insistent I hung up on her. When I told my wife later she said I should have invited her up and debated her. But honestly, I feel like I have better things to do with my time than invite a crazy lady into my home. The glassy-eyed proselytizers freak me out lil’ bit.

              2. “But honestly, I feel like I have better things to do with my time than invite a crazy lady into my home. ”

                I agree. I never let them in. Instead, I talk to them outside. So I can leave the conversation whenever I wish. Never let them get a foot in the door.

                For more on Mormons and atheists people should seek out Julia Sweeny’s talk on how Mormon missionaries played a big part in bringing her to atheism. It is a funny tale, and the bit about the Mormons is in her TED talk, IIRC.

              3. Last time I saw Jehova’s Witnesses (who, for some reason, insist on getting adonai all over the yahweh), they walked with slumped shoulders away from my door after I failed to stop laughing.

              4. I think I got the JWs to stop coming by my house when I greeted them at the door by saying if they expected me to listen to their sales pitch, it was only fair that they had to listen to me read a chapter from The God Delusion first.

              5. The JWs regularly drop off their mags at our house, mostly because my wife enjoys arguing with them. Of course, she also enjoys baiting the computer scammers who phone up pretending to be Microsoft security people (she works in IT, thus can lead them a pretty dance before they hang up in frustration).

              6. @ Microraptor (“…read a chapter from The God Delusion…”): super ploy! Making a note of it…

                @ Eamon Knight: I wish your wife were available to help my 90-year-old, trying-to-be-computer-literate father when those jerks call him!

              7. @Diane:
                The strategies I use start with asking them *which* computer has been exhibiting the problem they have ‘detected’, since I have many. (They are evolving their strategy: Last time I talked to them, they told me to type a command and read me a string of numbers that they said would identify the computer – though it looks like a serial number, it turns out that string is the same on pretty much every computer running Windows.) I also ask them for details of the reports they are ‘receiving’, telling them that for security reasons I have turned off all the settings that automatically send information to Microsoft.

                One thing that might work for your dad (if he has the time and inclination) is suggest that he tell them that it is an inconvenient time, and ask for a name and phone number he could call at a later time, then he can follow up with Microsoft (or at least with Google)..

              8. This keeps happening to me. Last time I told the guy that all my computers run Linux, which happens to be true, but he didn’t seem to understand that it was a different operating system. I found a video explaining how to configure Ubuntu on youtube, started it an placed the phone next to my speaker. I went and put the kettle on and when I came back 10 minutes later he was still talking to the video!

              9. @ Theo Bromine

                Thank you for the ideas! They are ones I can use myself!

                Unfortunately, my Dad is far from that computer-savvy/eloquent. I’m very proud of him for having taken courses and managed to get up to speed with email & some internet familiarity he can use for his work in maritime history, but a great deal of the cyberworld is simply beyond his comprehension. I was, however, able to convince him that any such “Microsoft security” calls should be totally ignored by asking him to consider just how large a call-center staff MS would have to have, given the number of Windows users in the world…He can still appreciate examples like that.

                But it’s very discouraging how many con artists prey on the elderly…

  1. They are waiting for you to die so you can be baptised too, that way they can claim that “Eventually, Dr Coyne saw the light and became a Mormon too, These are the Stanfield’s he wore.”

    1. My children have strict instructions to de-Moronize me after death ( a la the Bill Maher ceremony) if they find I have been involuntarily been “necrodunked” by these fools.

    2. Why not just download the obits from every newspaper they can get and go for volume. After all if Rev. Moon could marry 5000 or so at one time, the mormies should be able to knock off a few thousand baptisms every day. These guys just aren’t putting enough effort into this.

      1. They do.

        The fake baptism of the dead is so assembly lined and efficient that they have run out of names.

        From what I’ve heard from exMormons, they’ve baptized every name of everyone that ever died that they can get their hands on.

        Which is far from everyone. Some countries won’t release names to the Mormons any more because the baptism of the dead thing grosses them out. And of course, billions of people have died and weren’t recorded or the records have been lost or destroyed in one war or another.

  2. The “magic Mormon underwear” for men looks rather like (except for the “codpiece” look) the sort of thin underwear, I forget what it’s called, that Japanese men wear/used to wear in summer to prevent sweat staining their shirt or outer garments – it’s hot and humid in Japan in summer, and sweat stains are uncouth. The pants part would be worn over some closer undergarment (briefs, usually). In fact years ago you could sometimes see men wearing just the underwear and a “haramaki” – a sort of knit tube covering the waist to hips.

  3. I find this behavior by the Mormons incredibly distasteful.

    I don’t believe I have a soul. I also don’t believe that anything magical is going to happen to my corpse, nor will I have any use for it when I am gone.

    That doesn’t mean I don’t have a big fracking problem with some Mormon version of Dr Frankenstein digging my body up so he can get a kick out of giving it everlasting life.

  4. Hmm…

    …what is it with people who feel such a need to worship all powerful gods who can’t be bothered to do the right thing and just let good people into heaven regardless of what they believed? A god who can’t do the right thing on its own isn’t a moral god :-p

    1. Our species seems to be incapable of accepting that death is the finality of life – ALL life. I also believe that at some time in our evolutionary past our conscious awareness and fear of death contributed to the development of spirituality, religion, gods and “life” after death – which of course was exploited by those cynics who saw the opportunity of mind control and influence over the masses!

    1. Scientologists believe all humans are infested with mind-controlling space ghost soul vampires.

      Christians like to cannibalize the reanimated flesh of an ancient zombie in the hopes that said zombie will permit them to eternally fondle his intestines.

      Morons are Christians who think the ghost of a first century Jew living in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica selected an eighteenth century con man as his personal secretary.

      And the Hairy Fishnuts drool over blue-skinned elephant-headed naked men with seventeen penises, or something-or-other like that.

      One of them might qualify for the title of the craziest, but I sure as hell can’t figure it out….


    2. The religion is no more crazy. The organisation is pathological, as pathological as the Mormon church was a hundred and fifty years ago. I expect by 2150 the remaining Scientologists will have had the rough edges sanded off.

  5. Strictly speaking, we shouldn’t be bothering our heads about this. Seeking out the names of real dead people in a register and then sending someone to take a plunge in (or with) their name does nothing whatsoever to them or their descendents. “It neither picks their pocket nor breaks their leg,” as Jefferson might have said.

    Only the knowledge that this has been done hurts the feelings of the descendents. Then it seems, the descendents believe or fear that it actually does what is claimed for it, turns the ancestors into Mormons – but only, say the Mormons, if they (the dead) want it to.

    Like (I suspect) many of you, I support the descendents in this. It’s a bloody cheek! But if I could look at it more objectively, I should see that it’s no better or worse than burning a Qu’ran – a meaningless act.

    1. Nail on the head Shuggy, plus, the International Genealogical Index they produce from all that research is available to the public for their own research. Genealogists use it frequently, and I have used it literally as an index into official records to establish lineages back three generations. I truly don’t care if grandad is only in the index because a smart suited guy in a temple or office re-baptised him.
      And if a quick re-baptism gets BigBob onto the index then I say go for it. The Mormons can pretend they’ve saved my soul just as the man in a frock did when I was a baby. Meanwhile many years from now a family historian descendant of mine will know where to find me. Knock yourselves out Mormons.

    2. I’m vacillating on this.

      OT1H, you’re right: it’s a silly ritual with no significance outside the sect that performs it — getting worked up over it almost implies we think there’s actually something to it. Rather we should regard it the way non-gamers would regard the rules of D&D or WoW. So, while I’d be a little creeped out and irritated to find they’d done their silly magic spell, inserting my late (and agnostic) parents’ names in the blanks, I’d get over it. The appropriate reaction is to give a bemused sneer, and move on.

      OTOH, Jews have this unhappy history of forced conversion by Christians (Mormons being a heretic offshoot thereof), so I can see where it might be more of a sore point. Suppose there were a sect that performed a ritual in which they cursed and vilified everyone’s dead relatives, individually, by name, and wrote down all the details. Again, there’s no “real” harm done, but it’s goddamn insulting — we still care about our deceased — and they’d be universally regarded as assholes. And I suppose to many Jews, that’s roughly equivalent to what the Mormons are doing when they baptize Anne Frank.

  6. I heard a story once of a guy who was in some sort of secret mission in WW2 and was declared dead as some sort of cover. Some odd bits of limbs that the military claimed was all that was left of him were handed to his family and there was a funeral service. When he turned up some years later he discovered that he had been baptized by the Mormons.

  7. Thanx for that underwear link. About what I expected but I’d never seen the actual items.

    At least, the Mormonical girl I once knew didn’t wear those things – not then, anyway. But I have a strong suspicion that the stuff that she was raised under reared itself up and now she very well may.

    1. How old? You don’t get ’em till you have your temple endowments performed, which is typically around 19 (and maybe 22 or 23 for women; I can’t actually quite recall).

      That’s why, despite being a Mormon priest (still am, technically!), I never had the magic underwear. I left a couple years before I would have got it.

      It’s an interesting thing that, despite being raised Mormon and being entirely active for ~16 years and on-and-off for the next year or so, I still didn’t know anything about the temple endowment rituals. Until I looked it up on the Internet, that is. I was so grateful to be able to do that! If I’d been born just a few decades earlier, I might have gone to my grave never knowing what my parents actually did in the most important ceremony of the religion in which I was raised. Fucked up, eh?

  8. Why aren’t they baptizing bad guys? Have they baptized Attila the Hun or Hitler or Stalin? How much can they care about salvation of doomed souls if they aren’t going after Nazis and Commies?

    1. According to Helen Radkey again, the Mormons did baptise Hitler and Eva Braun in a UK temple. Likewise, the entry has since been removed from the record.

      I googled -helen radkey hitler- to find a site called the Mormon Curtain which had the information.

    2. Yes, as I described below, this is not some publicity ploy or some deliberate attempt to dishonor the memory of other culture’s icons, or even to co-opt their fame. Rather, it is the logical conclusion of a dogma which establishes that posthumous baptisms must be performed for every human who ever lived, lest they be denied the opportunity to accept the Mormon faith after death.

      For all questions of the form, “have they baptized X?”, the answer is either “Yes” or “No but they are planning to.”

  9. I guess we’re going to have to accept that humanity’s capacity for stupidity is inexhaustible and there will be crazy cults for so long as there are people too lazy and ignorant to put in the work and research reality. Considering the statistics the pool available for exploitation is always going to be a large one.

    A great business opportunity, though, cash on demand, a long line of willing shapely acolytes, power and adoration a plenty. I can see the appeal Who’s in?

      1. True. Someone more harmless like Ahura Mazda would be a good candidate. The Zoroastrians cannot spare enough people for suicide missions.

  10. Just a side note, since there’s a fair amount of “why would they do that?” Well, given their premises, why wouldn’t they do it? Should Anne Frank and Ghandi be left alone as the sole people unable to choose to accept their posthumous baptism and enter the Celestial Kingdom (the highest level of heaven in Mormon mythology)? That would seem like rather twisted logic… “Well, most people we are going to give the chance to have the rituals performed which they missed out on in life, but these people are so revered, we’re going to say ‘fuck ’em!'”

    The problem, as is often the case, is the dogma itself. It’s not that Mormons are rotten people; it’s that the dogma is rotten. In fact, granting for the sake of argument that the dogma is true, Mormons would be rotten people if they didn’t baptize Ghandi and Anne Frank.

    As we all know, this is the problem with those who would wish to argue that religion is not the problem, that “haters gonna hate” and some simply use religion as an excuse. That’s true to a point… but I can assure you that those diligent Mormons performing these offensive-to-many baptisms are not rubbing their hands together and think how they are going to dishonor Jews today. This stems from an unholy confluence of a rotten dogma and misplaced compassion.

    This isn’t an example of individual Mormons being insensitive; rather, this is yet another example of religion’s all-poisoning effect.

    (As a side note of clarification, Mormons do not believe that posthumous baptism automatically makes people into Mormons, they believe it merely gives them the opportunity to do so. I hesitate to even mention it, because it’s not really germane to much of anything… I suppose I mention it only because, like most of us here, I value truth for its own sake, so when I see a misconception being propagated, I feel compelled to correct it even when there’s really no point in doing so… heh…)

  11. I look at this as a perfect response to Pascal’s wager: “Well, if I’m wrong, the Mormon’s will probably baptize me when I’m dead anyways.”

    Baptism for the Dead: All your soul are belong to us!

  12. Overall I find this practice revolting. I would hate for my descendants to think that this might in any way indicate my acceptance of Mormanism.

    While I can see from the Moran’s perspective that providing a path to salvation for those who never had a chance because they were born before Joseph Smith is noble, to do it for people who lived after is just insulting. (It is preferable, in a miserable sort of way, to the attitude of many churches who just damn all those people. It must really suck to be Jesus’ grandparents.)

    At the same time, though, given that it doesn’t seem that there are any actual requirements for ex post facto baptism, might this not in later years be used to call into question the devoteness of all deceased Mormans? After all, people might say, they use to baptize the dead, so you can’t tell what any of them believed? I heard Mitt Romney was a Morman, but maybe he’s just one of those dead Mormans? (If we have a word — pedobaptism — for infant baptism, don’t we need a word for baptism of the dead? Thneskobaptism? Nekrobaptism? Someone who knows Greek…?)

    Finally, if a dead person can gain salvation with no action on their part, what does that really say about being saved? Why not just say that everyone is saved? What’s the operant here, the database? Seems to me like living Mormans are getting the shaft.

  13. I think all religions should do it. It would really liven up eternity if you didn’t know what religion you were going to be and what heaven you were going to find yourself in every time you woke up.

  14. It never fails to amaze me the extent to which omnipotent gods require friendly human intervention to achieve their objectives. Islamists require bombs, guns & knives to deal with Quran burners and Mormons need proxy baptism. A thunderbolt might be more helpful in the first case and a prayer in the second.
    “O God, since the creation of the first human countless are the generations which have tasted death without knowledge of Thee and of Thy Son and of Thy servant, Joseph Smith. Extend to them Thy Grace and Infinite Mercy. Help them that they may be led to Truth and Wisdom. Receive them into the Everlasting Light of Thy Love.”

  15. The Mormon church has gotten bad press before for stepping out of bounds regarding baptisms for deceased famous people(founding fathers). They changed their policy years ago and now require all names for baptisms for the dead be submitted by literal descendants only. I find it interesting that the ordinance record shown on this post was performed out of order which is a big no-no in the church. Where did you get this? Forgive me for being skeptical. Having been raised Mormon, there was a time I thought this proxy thing was a great idea. Luckily, my conscience finally caught up with my strict indoctrination. If this story is true, the church should publicly acknowledge the mistake and apologize to India and M.G.s family.

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