If you have been following the political pundits on the news channels, one of the quickest liberal jibes at the conservatives is to make fun of Mitt Romney’s use of “Magic Underwear” in his religious life as a Mormon. Personally, I think both sides need to focus more on politics and less on personal attacks; so I decided to actually look into what “Magic Underwear” actually means in the Mormon faith. What I found was that the real name for undergarment is a “Temple Garment.” The term “Magic Underwear” is actually offensive to Mormons and that term should never be used. Throwing the “Temple Garment” into a political argument is similar to throwing a cross or a head wrap into the debate. I wonder if our pundits know this. It is my hope that we all take a step back and really think about and research our political commentary.
Here is a bit more info on Temple Garment:
According to the LDS Church, the temple garments serve a number of purposes. First, the garment provides the member “a constant reminder” of the covenants they made in the temple. Second, the garment “when properly worn…provides protection against temptation and evil”. Wearing the garment is also “an outward expression of an inward commitment” to follow Jesus Christ. General authority Carlos E. Asay adds that the garment “strengthens the wearer to resist temptation, fend off evil influences, and stand firmly for the right.”
The nature of the protection believed to be afforded by temple garments is ambiguous and varies between adherents. Researchers who interviewed a sample of Latter-day Saints who wear the temple garment reported that virtually all wearers expressed a belief that wearing the garment provided “spiritual protection” and encouraged them to keep their covenants. Some of those interviewed “asserted that the garment also provided physical protection, while others seemed less certain of any physical aspect to protection.” In Mormon folklore, tales are told of Latter-day Saints who credit their temple garments with helping them survive car wrecks, fires, and natural disasters.
In the church’s Handbook of Instructions, leaders are instructed to tell members they “should wear the garment both day and night”,, and that they should not alter it. In the temple recommend interview, members are asked if they wear the garment “night and day” according to the covenants made in the temple, although the temple ordinance only states that “you must wear [the garment] throughout your life.” Members are told that they should not partially or completely remove any portion of the garment to participate in activities that can “reasonably be done with the garment worn properly beneath the clothing”. When necessary, the garment may be temporarily removed, but members are told that after the activity “they should put it back on as soon as possible.” Swimming is given as an example of an activity that would justify removal of the garment.
Garment wearers are also instructed that they should not adjust the garment or wear it in a way that would accommodate the wearing of what the church considers to be immodest clothing. This includes uncovering areas of the body that would normally be covered by the garment, such as the shoulders and lower thighs. Members are instructed to keep garments clean and mended and to refrain from displaying them or exposing them to the view of others who may not understand their significance. Prior to the disposal of old garments, members are instructed to cut out the markings on them. After the marks are removed, “the fabric is not considered sacred” and the garment fabric may be cut up and discarded or used for other purposes.
*** Not all Mormons wear Temple Garments — it is elective and heavily debated within the religion. Romney has never confirmed/ denied the use of a Temple Garment ***
Info via Wikipedia