Posts Tagged 'Mormon Culture'

Dude. You Have the Scriptures on Your IPod?!

A paraphrased story from my #2 son:

We have recently moved to a small town in western Ohio.  My #2 son is one of only two young men in the local high school (as far as I know).  He is participating on the football team and just the other day the team had a meal together.  At the table where he sat, the conversation turned to the practices of Mormonism.  The report of the conversations went something like this:

“So you believe there should not be any sex before marriage.”

“Yes”, my boy said.

“Seriously?”

“Yes”

“What would you do if a pretty girl came up to you, unzipped your pants, and gave you a hand job?”

“I would probably slap her face.”

“No you wouldn’t”

“Yes I would”

“What about Adam and Eve, they weren’t married”

“Yes the were”

My son then pulls out his IPod and goes to Genesis 1 to show that Adam and Eve were husband and wife.

“Dude.  You have the scriptures on your IPod?!”

The boy seemed to handle it pretty well.  And seems to have no fear.

I Know the Church is True – Or – Epistemology of a Testimony

I know that the church is true.

This statement is repeated over, and over again on the first Sunday of every month in Fast and Testimony meetings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  Members, of course, are not forced to say this, but most of them do.  This certain statement bothers a few people when they hear it.  They will often say that the ‘know’ part is to strong, and ‘true’ is a pretty strong word as well.

Continue reading ‘I Know the Church is True – Or – Epistemology of a Testimony’

Free Agency vs. Moral Agency

Mormons tend to have a very robust, though unsophisticated, belief in free will.  Most will refer to this free will as free agency.  This term agency seems to add an element of accountability to God for the choices that are made, while maintaining the freedom of the will.

There has been something of a subtle movement within the church to change the phrase ‘free agency’ to ‘moral agency’.  A few of the local members in my home ward are quite fond of pointing this out every time anyone mentions free agency in a lesson discussion.  They feel the need to correct some error on the part of the individual who uses the more common term free agency.  These good folks will point out that the phrase ‘free agency’ is not a scriptural phrase (although they never mention that the phrase ‘moral agency’ isn’t scriptural either). – [Update:  D&C 101:78 does use 'moral agency'.  I was wrong.]

But these few local members are not the only one’s getting into the act.  A search on the phrase ‘moral agency’ at lds.org will bring up several recent conference talks.  It does appear that some church leaders are beginning to prefer the term ‘moral’ to ‘free’ when describing our agency.  Why should this be, and what is at stake?

Continue reading ‘Free Agency vs. Moral Agency’

Philosophies of Men, Mingled with Scripture

The phrase ‘the philosophies of men, mingled with scripture’ is sometimes used by Mormons to discredit some idea as a false doctrine, even if the idea has some scriptural support.  It almost always has a strong negative connotation associated with it. I imagine that people who have a background and interest in philosophy wish that this phrase, and the usual usage of it, would just go away.  I do not believe it is likely to go anywhere, and since one place this phrase is used is a narrative that is sacred to Mormons – it may be a warning to be taken seriously.

Continue reading ‘Philosophies of Men, Mingled with Scripture’

The Gap Between Worthy and Perfect

The concept of worthiness in a somewhat unique aspect of Mormonism.  There are frequent worthiness interviews that one undergoes when fully participating in the church.  Youth get interviewed quite frequently as they progress through the youth programs and Aaronic priesthood quorums.  Adults get interviewed for temple recommends regularly as the recommends expire.  There are also interviews for church callings.  The individual conducting these interviews (particularly temple recommends and priesthood advancement) has a responsibility to determine the worthiness of the person being interviewed.

The Perfect College Football Playoff System: 2009 Version

Last year I introduced what I consider to be the perfect college football playoff system.  The BCS selections were made a couple of days ago, and while there is less national controversy this year than in previous years, there are still problems with the BCS system in 2009.  The primary problems this year include:

-  Three teams have undefeated seasons (Cincinnati, TCU, and Boise State), yet will have no chance whatsoever at the national championship.  And this year more than most I believe these teams actually have a shot.  I personally believe TCU would likely beat Texas right now for example.

Continue reading ‘The Perfect College Football Playoff System: 2009 Version’

Um, God? It’s Golf Season Again.

Heavenly Father,

Could you please help me find my golf ball?  I know it is around here somewhere.  I’ve looked everywhere, and it is time to either find the ball, or take a penalty stroke and a drop.  Could you PLEASE help me find the ball?

In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Continue reading ‘Um, God? It’s Golf Season Again.’


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