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Showing posts from 2012

Atheism and Wiley Coyote

Adherence to atheism stuns me.  I have empathy for the individual who struggles to find God as there have been plenty of times in my life where I, too, have felt spiritually bereft and alone; however, I have genuine trouble accepting one of the core tenets of the atheist worldview that is born out of its original God-less premise:  If we are solely a product of cosmic randomness, then there is no inherent purpose to our existence.

Many folks around the world wonder what will happen to them when they die.  They (we) also want to know why we are all here.  The former question doesn't intrigue me as much as the latter because if I cease to exist after I die then there won't be any of my consciousness around to continue wondering the question.  If there is an afterlife and that afterlife is governed by God, then really the more important question is the latter and its corollary:  What does God want me to do while I'm alive? What is the purpose of my existence?

In an atheistic …

Does President Clinton make it to Heaven?

I read an article today about President Clinton's investigation of Mormonism where he said he:
"admires the church for its high ethical standards and belief in a celestial kingdom but said the idea of being in heaven without his non-Mormon friends was too much to give up." Fair enough.  I'd probably give it up, too.

Sometimes missionaries get it wrong.  Sometimes investigators misunderstand.  However, one need only go so far as the common misinterpretation of who can attend LDS worship services to remember that we Mormons have a reputation for being a pretty exclusive group.

(To set that record straight for the three people who read my blog:  Anyone can attend.  Services are every Sunday morning in LDS chapels, most of them are buzzing with believers by 9am.)

Anyway, what about heaven? Do our scriptures bear out the idea that President Clinton's "non-Mormon friends" won't be in heaven with him?  Let's check it out.

Doctrine and Covenants, Section…


I recently read an article about Chick-Fil-A's socially conservative reputation, and I thought I'd write out my thoughts.  In the original article the writer makes five points.  Below, I've aligned my paragraphs accordingly.  Enjoy!

While I think that any business should be evaluated against their contribution to the community in addition to their products, these points sound a bit shrill.

Before I share my thoughts on the writer's points, I'll disclaim that my wife is a stay-at-home mom, and we will sacrifice to the bone to keep it that way.  We eat dinner with our kids every night.  We believe our kids need Mom and Dad there as often as possible, and that children are entitled to a mom and a dad.  We believe that practicing homosexuality is a sin and that condoning said sin individually or collectively will not result in a social good.  We don't pretend that homosexuality is something that can be prayed away, but we be…

Motivation for Dishonesty

I was reading about a recent conference held at UVU called Mormons and the Internet.  While I wasn't able to attend, I found a number of online discussions and "play-by-plays," and I really resonated with a number of things that I heard.

One of the interesting points that was brought up was that the Internet is where different groups of Latter-Day Saints are fighting to own (or contribute to) the definition of what it means to be a Latter-Day Saint.  Because the Internet is now the first source that people look to for information on just about anything, it is prime real estate for staking claims of identity, and a great many individuals who feel repressed by the top-down nature of the LDS Church have interpreted such as an opportunity to make their voice heard.

I think that this was brought to light by a question that Allen Wyatt asked of John Dehlin during a panel discussion (thanks, Allen, for posting the question and answer online):

People often study the same facts or…

Pierced With Deep Wounds

This post is inspired by an article that I read today in the Deseret News about churches losing members, specifically the LDS church of which I am a faithful member. It hit close to home for me, and I wondered if someone out there might benefit from my own story.
Way back on New Year's Eve in 1999, I was surfing the Internet to find some information for my calling as Elder's Quorum Secretary. In the middle of my search, I found an article that brought to light some teachings by Brigham Young that future Church leaders rejected. The site claimed that prophets would never teach anything that was false and that this history had been suppressed because of its fatal nature to the LDS faith. To my 18-year-old mind, the arguments were persuasive.
Needless to say, it was a moment that I desperately wanted to forget. I ran upstairs into my bedroom and cried and cried. Like the filth of pornography, it stained my mind and wouldn't let me at peace. Was all the happiness and joy …

Make Your Voice Heard Through

You've heard it before. Mormons wear magic underwear, hide their extra wives in their closet, and believe that they will get their own planet when they die. Sigh. I've read things like this on Wikipedia, the Washington Post, the LA Times, and a number of other places where I would expect a modicum of accuracy from the writers if not from the multitude of commenters who see it as an opportunity to get to the "juicy" stuff about those weird Mormons. It has only increased in the last year and a bit that has been dubbed "the Mormon Moment".

If there is anything that I've learned from this it is the incredible amount of misinformation that is out there on the Internet about the faith that I hold dear. Truly, I've learned that lack of access to the facts of a given matter does not stop a person who wants to say something from making something up in its place. On the other hand, I've also learned that many people are more than happy to be enlighte…