Last night, I saw the popular broadway show "Book of Mormon" with family and friends, and I absolutely loved it. Not only was it as offensive and full of the vulgar South Park humor we all know and (secretly) love, it was an amazing musical with brilliant, hilarious actors. And by offensive, I mean the fact it practically took an entire religion and made incessant fun and ridicule of it for two hours, besides the numerous jokes and cliches portrayed too. Beyond all of these factors, one thing really stuck out to me.
Not trying to spoil it for anyone, but after the failure of the Ugandian's rendition of the Book of Mormon, Elder Price realizes something that made so much sense to me. Price explains how Elder Cunningham was trying to teach him the absurdity of Mormonism all along, but he never realized it even as a kid when he read the book and it made no sense.
In every religion, there are going to be certain stories, legends, or tales passed down generations by generation. Over the course of many years, these stories can be edited and elements added just by natural way of oral history and to keep people engaged in the religion.
Of course the in the play "Book of Mormon," the book may not have had all the fascinating quirks that Cunningham added and was not as hilarious, but the addition of the Star Wars, Game of Thrones, and other pop culture references made me think. Not all of the teachings, texts, stories, etc. of any religion can be taken seriously because of the possibility of additions.
I mean, it does not make sense to take every element so seriously and literally and I think that is sort of what "Book of Mormon" was going for, besides being hilarious and ridiculing a whole religion. Of course the Mormons did not fight off the death star, or yell "Hodor!" as Cunningham so proudly claimed, but these additions definitely made the Uganda villagers way more excited and engaged in the book. Even at the end, we see how the villagers did not take most of what Cunningham to be literal with frogs being the cure to aids and what not.
Thank you "Book of Mormon" for making me laugh until my abs hurt, crying from Elder Cunningham's hilarious reactions, Elder Price's contagious smile and dance moves, and an overall reflective perspective towards religion and the stories within them.