BuildingZion.org is for everyone who shares this worldview:
- Babylon (our society of political, economic, religious, and moral corruption), will fall as prophesied (Isaiah 21:9; Revelation 18:2; and D&C 1:16) .
- We can & should prepare by following our leaders’ counsel to become as independent and self-reliant as possible.
- Building Zion probably qualifies as being “anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do[ing] many things of their own free will, and bring[ing] to pass much righteousness” (D&C 58:27)
Babylon cannot endure because it’s founded on the self-defeating principles of pride and greed. It has no firm foundation, so it must, and will collapse under its own weight. Jesus told Joseph Smith, “I will not spare any that remain in Babylon“. So… why stick around?
I’m not the prophet and I’m not a member of the Seventy, in fact, I’ve never even been a bishop. Currently, I serve as a ward librarian in my Utah ward. I’m no one in the LDS Church.
I’ve been fascinated with the idea of Zion since I first read about it at age 15. I suppose I might have heard about Zion in Sunday School between the time my family joined the LDS Church in 1970 and when I first read about it in 1977. That spring my sister married a man from Salt Lake City and for a wedding gift, she gave me a novel titled, “Added Upon” by Nephi Anderson.
Reading a description in that novel about life in the New Jerusalem lit a fire in my soul that has endured over four decades. The idea of participating in a Zion society makes living in even the most abundant nation in history rather bland by comparison. America achieved what no other nation has done – a society built on political, economic, and social freedoms. In spite of this, I still yearn for Zion, which I expect will be 10 times what America was at her peak. A Celestial City. A light to the world. The literal capital of God’s Kingdom on Earth. I ACHED TO BE THERE.
Tragedy and Hope
Then I forgot about her. I was preoccupied for six years while I served a mission, attended BYU, and got married. I had forgotten Zion; I was out to become a success! Then, I came across and read Hugh Nibley’s speech (now a chapter in the book Approaching Zion) entitled “Work We Must, But the Lunch is Free”. It threw me for a huge loop – rocked my world – challenged all my economic assumptions. I realized that I had been suckered by the “delicacies” of the prostitute Babylon.
But what hurt more was that I soon came to realize that most of my fellow Mormons apparently had only a vague notion of what Zion was and appeared to have little or no interest in building it in the here and now. Imagine my joy when an occasional conference talk referenced quotes by modern prophets that indicate that the goal of building Zion had not been abandoned. Imagine my joy when a few full-length talks (here, here and here) were given over the past 12 years indicating that the vision of building a latter-day Zion still lights a few hearts.
So, I’ve Been Waiting…
Waiting for my fellow Saints to catch the vision. Waiting for the Brethren to give us directions. I have been biding my time the past three decades gathering examples of human institutions that more readily approximate Zion’s organizational principles (like cooperatives and freedom-based schools). I’ve studied a history of the LDS Church’s economic experiments and discovered many remarkable things of which the general membership is apparently unaware.
I’m tired of waiting.
So, now I’m taking personal responsibility to do all I can to learn and apply Zion principles in my life and encourage others to do so.
I invite all who read this to get “anxiously engaged in [this] good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness.”