Using Human Reason to Think About God

A question which often arises in theological discussion is that of whether we mere mortals are in any position to make sense of these kinds of topics in the first place. One common argument is that the things of God are incomprehensible to mortal understanding, and we shouldn’t expect to understand them with our finite brains. If particular religious teachings appear nonsensical or even morally problematic, then, this is merely due to the limits of human reason.

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Who should have the calling?

Please answer gender-appropriately, as I’m curious if men and women feel differently about this. Also, if you’re single feel free to answer hypothetically.


Would you rather hold a time-consuming calling or would you rather your spouse held one?
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Follow-up on Huckabee and “Chicken Patriarchy”

As a follow-up to ECS’s post on Huckabee and “Chicken Patriarchy”, I thought I’d link to this post which explains in more detail how “submit” is discussed in evangelical circles and how Huckabee’s recent explanations do seem to be either a substantial revision of evangelical beliefs or a deceptive way of making evangelical teachings more palatable to the masses:

Here’s a quote that Majikthise takes from the official SBC website: Read More

Mormon Masculinity and Theological Blood Sport (Or, What We Mormon Girls Look For In the Boys We Date)

At this point in my life I happen to be pretty thoroughly acquainted with, and very fond of, two unrelated men able to recite myriads of scriptures and general-authority citations at the drop of a hat. Both are the uncontested theological authorities of their marriages; their wives might timidly pose questions or even more timidly offer their own ideas, often only to be ignored or shot down. When such men encounter one another, ritualized combat or mutual exhortation often ensue; either the combatants joust over some theological point or they join in denouncing the evangelicals, the secular world, or other unenlightened Mormons or Christians (to mention a few of the more popular targets). And as is so often the case in ritualized intellectual combat, the combatants often provoke one another into taking harder and harder stances, shoving softer, more moderate, and more considered, nuanced voices aside. We’ve all sat through a Sunday-school lesson or two that has followed this general outline. Read More

From the Children’s Songbook to the Hymn Book

If I understand correctly, several hymns in our hymn book appeared first as children’s songs. Isn’t this the case for Called to Serve, I Am a Child of God, and Families Can Be Together Forever?

So, since the precedent is set, I would like to see Beautiful Savior, which currently appears only in the Children’s Songbook, added to the hymn book. Every time I hear the Mormon Tabernacle Choir sing it, I wish that we could sing it in sacrament meeting.

Are there any other current children’s songs that you would like to see moved to the hymn book?

More Thoughts on “Raising the Bar”

The discussion of “raising the bar” in Steve Evans’s Friday Firestorm #24 last month at BCC got me to thinking about what the possible effects of this more stringent missionary screening policy might be.

The screening process that includes interviews with a missionary candidate’s Bishop or Branch President can result in two types of errors. A candidate can be approved to serve a full-time mission when he or she should not have been, or a candidate can be kept home when in fact he or she was qualified to serve. If the goal of the screening process is thought of as a medical test diagnosing “shouldn’t serve syndrome,” the first kind of error would be a failure to diagnose a true case (a miss), and the second kind would be diagnosing someone who isn’t a case (a false alarm).

So what does raising the bar mean for these two types of errors? Read More

Some New Year’s Thoughts

Usually sometime in January, I write down a list of the things I’d like to try and accomplish during the upcoming year. It’s usually not a long list, and I’m not very intense about it, and I usually only accomplish one or two things on the list (and this is often based on the fact that one to two things on my list are things that I think I will likely accomplish). However, I enjoy doing some thinking about how my life has gone for the past year and what I’m trying to envision for the upcoming year.

Except this year I’m not sure if I want to write up a list. Read More