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About clarkgoble

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  1. Big Bang not the Beginning

    That which is not forbidden is compulsory. OK, not a great argument but at least one we can't dismiss out of hand.
  2. Big Bang not the Beginning

    He's a physicist, but so too is Physics Guy. So your reply is a bit odd. I'm not sure he has that fantastic of credentials. He seems primarily known due to his blogging not his papers. He's a professor at Lewis & Clark College which isn't exactly great in the reputation for theoretical physics. If he was at Berkeley, Harvard, UT Austin or some place like that I think you'd have more of a point. Not that it matters in this case since he's just explaining fairly well known things. But pointing to credentialism can be as problematic as ad hominem. For more fun get at Woit or Motl's posts on the subjects. Again, not true just because they say it, but at least they have some credential respect.
  3. The Church is growing so fast...

    Apparently archive.org actually has scans of many old priesthood manuals from the 70's and 80's. I've not successfully been able to download one yet though. Still trying.
  4. Big Bang not the Beginning

    All excellent points. Plus, for doubters, the only issues with the big bang really come very, very early on. But even by 1 second the universe is so radically different so as to make the places where decades ago there were debates kind of moot. Tons of evidence for the big bang with, as you note, just nuance that was debated about. The multiverse really has zero evidence for it despite claims popping up at times. I vaguely recall several PBS documentaries claiming there was weak evidence for it but I think that was misrepresenting what constitutes evidence. That said, I think there is a certain elegance to the multiverse even ignoring the Mormon theological need for such a thing. Ignoring theology, it would seem rather odd if this universe was all there was.
  5. Baptism - Doctrinal Evolution

    Yeah baptism in the 19th century Utah period is particularly interesting as it parallels much closer the Jewish mikvah rather than my perceptions of Protestant baptism. I don't know if anyone has done comparisons with other movements in the US. I suspect it was more widespread than just Mormons. However I found it fascinating when I first learned about it. The other thing I find interesting is how the line between anointing and washing blurs both in the ANE but even in early America. When you stop and think about the semiotics it makes a lot of sense why the meanings would shift and flow like that. Still I find it pretty fascinating. That said, despite that semiotic drift as different associations ebb and flow, the key meanings have remained fairly stable over time. (For obvious reasons given the fixed texts of the NT, D&C, and BoM)
  6. It's not owned by CoC but the temple lot is the ultimate real estate from the Church's perspective. Of course I doubt the Church will ever get it. Nor am I sure I want them to get it just yet, given the prophecies and traditions of the lot.
  7. I've not heard that anywhere although it wouldn't surprise me. That's been the case in the past with many documents the Church has obtained. Although in this case it's a large sum of money, although most reports I've read said the Church got a killer deal on the documents. They were likely worth $50 million to as much as $100 million dollars. It's possible, although there are quite a few different wealthy people who have bought documents in the past. This one is a bit pricier than many past documents, but it could have easily been the Huntsman family too or a few others very rich people.
  8. Big Bang not the Beginning

    That is the traditional knock about multiverse models. I think theologically Mormons need something like that since we have a materialist ontology and believe in something akin to an infinite past.
  9. The Church is growing so fast...

    Well, in the 70's there were a lot more explicit discussions in the Ensign so I'm skeptical the manuals would have avoided the issue. The vaguer manuals that were more focused on basics really developed in the 90's - especially with the shift to rotating through a chronological study of the scriptures. People are primarily familiar with the pretty big changes in manuals that Pres. Hinkley introduced in the 90's. In many ways the manuals prior to that were much more substantial.
  10. The Church is growing so fast...

    Again those manuals were pretty explicit in the introduction that they were only focusing on teachings relevant today. So I don't consider that whitewashing. Now I do consider it a pretty reasonable criticism that we have this weird hybrid between topics and studying what these figures wrote. It ultimately just doesn't work. It's hard to teach from as teachers often are confused as to whether they're supposed to be teaching the subject or the particular statements on the subject. Contrast this with say when we teach on a conference talk. There's still some tension (are we talking about the talk or the topic?) But with the Presidents of the Church manuals nearly all the quotes are distorted somewhat from their original context. So if you're just complaining about that point in general I'd agree. I just don't think it particularly is an issue of polygamy or whitewashing so much as trying to fit pretty disparate quotes to a topic that's relevant. I think they got much better at it in the last few manuals but those early ones were tough IMO. I think the Church would have done much better just haven't topical chapters without trying to make it also about particular figures.
  11. CNN article on Mormon dating issues

    I'm going to go out on a limb and guess the majority of missionaries haven't really even dated for fun much. There certainly are people who date for fun, which often at BYU means somewhat chaste hookups. But it's typically a smaller number of people than most assume. And the people who have skills at that often don't have skills at relationship type dating. I know lots of people who were extremely popular socially in their early 20's and then struggled by their late 20's. I've no idea how things are now, but if there's one thing I know having older people tell younger people to get married doesn't help and just stresses them out.
  12. CNN article on Mormon dating issues

    The main issue, at least back when I was single in my early 30's, is simply your peers. When you're single you have free time. When you're married you typically don't. That means married people just don't form a realistic social net. That's not to say you can't be friends, but the nature of the relationship is very different. You get bored. You want to do things. You want to do things with people with similar interests. If, as is so often the case, the group of Mormon single peers don't really connect you're choice is to be bored and lonely or else socialize with non-Mormons. That in turn almost always has practical effects on ones spirituality. (Which isn't a knock on non-Mormons in the least - just that the times you're spiritually not as strong you don't have people building you up and the differing values often make it hard to stay spiritual at such times)
  13. CNN article on Mormon dating issues

    That's a big issue. For people over 25 you start to develop habits - not even bad habits but just you get set in your ways, have your interests and so forth. During the early 20s most people are pretty malleable in interests which makes dating easier in some ways. You then just have people who are socially ignorant or have issues in their lives. What's frustrating is when you have certain things you're interested in but the majority of your dating pool doesn't have the same interests. I'll admit I was pretty clueless in my early 20's - I frequently wish I could go back and slap some sense into myself. But by the time I figured things out the type of people I found myself interested in were all married or not living in my area. I hated dating younger people but in practice that's what ended up happening just because they either didn't have strong interests or had the interests I had. (Or they pursued me rather than vice versa) The non-Mormon thing is tricky. I often found I had much more in common in many ways with non-Mormons than many of the Mormons in my wards. But there's obvious issues there and big incompatibilities if your faith is important to you. My brother ended up marrying a non-Mormon partially due to having pretty similar feelings on things to me. (Clueless in the early 20s when there was opportunity, and just not being compatible with those around when you figured things out)
  14. The Church is growing so fast...

    It's one thing to complain that in manuals designed for teaching basic principles they don't delve into historic controversies. I think saying there's a cover up is completely different. To my eyes you're conflating the two.
  15. The Church is growing so fast...

    I think most Mormons most definitely are embarrassed or at least quite uncomfortable talking about polygamy. That said I don't think they have some duty in a manual primarily about practical theological & ethical teaching ought put the worst light possible on all the history. In any case the Church is now linking to the main article on the subject in most manuals and it does say "careful estimates put the number between 30 and 40" and has references for further research for those interested.