Wednesday, June 13, 2012

On going to the temple

So i got tripped up by an interesting bit of Mormon terminology yesterday afternoon. Consider this:

    I’m going to the temple means that you’re going to perform ordinances of one kind or another (with a default of an endowment session, i think) inside a temple.

    I’m going to the temple means that you’re going to the grounds of a temple, perhaps as part of a sightseeing event when you’re on holiday.

This isn’t the first time that this particular ambiguity has caught me. I’m not sure what to do about it (my personally preferred solution, replacing to with through in the ordinance-performing reading, isn’t likely to ever be widely adopted, i don’t think), but one would think we’d be a bit more precise about one of the distinguishing practices of our religion, you know?


Michelle said...

I agree that "to" should be replaced with "through" when going inside the temple. But common usage of "going through the temple" is generally associated with a first time trip inside the temple. So maybe changing to "through" will just result in a second dual-connotation phrase.

Heather the Mama Duk said...

Generally I've heard people say "I'm going to SEE x temple" if they mean they are going to just look at a temple and not go inside.