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clarkgoble last won the day on June 19

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About clarkgoble

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  1. I think we get some, but I'm not sure we can tell which.
  2. That's not really the same thing. I certainly don't mind the Holy Ghost having an occasional micromanging position - either to prompt us or to prompt others to help us. But that seems quite different from our particular trials being given in the particulars. Yeah that was one of the ones of his I'd looked up. But it really seems again quite different. That seems different too. What I'm worried about is unfortunately a common belief but I've never heard a GA preach it and several preach against it. The idea is that every trial you face in the particulars was customized and prepared before you were born. It's not quite predestination but is close. In philosophy it requires what's called middle knowledge - that is the idea God knows every possibility and actualizes the one that is what he wants. The idea is that for any trial you are facing God created it just for you. I heard it a lot on my mission but honestly I think it a heretical idea. We may face some trials God gives us a blessing. But we also face trials we might not need for our progression and trials caused by other people's free will.
  3. I wouldn't assume we know the full story - particularly the views of those who excommunicated him. As someone else noted, he appear to want to remain married to his wife which seems pretty problematic. Kind of like a person who was a member of the Allred polygamist group deciding to come back to the church but wanting to remain married to all his wives. It just doesn't work that way. So far as I know the Church doesn't have a formal transgender policy. Perhaps this will prompt one. But it's not exactly clear what he expected to do as a woman. I'm really sympathetic to the points you raise. I think those who disparage the very thought of transgender as impossible to be woefully ignorant. That said I don't think the above come close to exhausting the possibilities, particularly given the place transgenderism has on the left the past few years. It's quite possible to think you're transgendered yet be mistaken. It's not hard to find people who feel like they were socially pressured into such things by therapists or even loved one. I remember one interview with someone who actually had the surgery and came to deeply regret it. This is particularly the case as parents often pressure or teach children they think might be transgendered to express their gender of choice. While this might be deeply beneficial to someone who is deeply transgendered it could be very destructive to someone confused. So I think you really need to put a place for people who are mistaken. That might blur in with mental illness depending upon how broadly you define that. Which takes one to the next point. I think we have a tendency to over pathologies mental difficulties. Now addiction far too quickly gets treated as mental illness as are many other things. While we can all think of things like highly autistic people or people unable to control themselves due to schizophrenia or bipolar disorder most people don't suffer conditions that extreme. Depression being a great example of a term that covers a pretty wide variety of states. I'd be far more sympathetic to the mental illness tag had we a biological understanding of what was going on. But we don't remotely have that. What we instead have are a loose collection of "symptoms" that could have radically different causes - not all of which would be helped by practicing life as a person of the opposite gender. Indeed that might in some cases make things worse. What I fear is that in our eagerness for the very important virtue of tolerance we make things worse overall. That's quite possible even as we make life better for some. To raise the obvious question - is there a way to biologically determine if someones gender identity is correct? From an LDS perspective is there a way to determine if there's a way to know spiritual gender? Clearly there isn't. So what do we do? I understand those who want an "anything goes" attitude, but I'm not sure they're thinking through the implications of that for things like marriage, priesthood, sealing or so forth. Certainly for someone deeply mentally ill it's pointless to administer a church court unless there are very compelling reasons. But it seems that's not the case here. So let me raise the obvious questions. Who are the kids sealed to? Who is his wife sealed to?
  4. I don't think Elder Packer was saying every trial we face was custom for us, although I'm not sure what talk you're referring to. (I searched but I couldn't find one making quite that point) Certainly we came to experience trials and I suspect many of the trials we experience were known in a general form before we arrived. But I don't think Elder Packer accepted such micromanaging so as to eliminate free will.
  5. The church couldn't care less what you believe so long as you don't commit any major sins and don't go around preaching false doctrine. I think JS' teaching still applies but that doesn't mean people hired to teach at a Church owned university should be able to teach anything they want.
  6. It really depends upon the professor. Some professors absolutely love when students do that. Some are clearly about the image of critical thinking and the reality of dogma. And then of course there are the majors where there are right answers... LOL.
  7. I think people still are ignorant. So while I find the essays extremely helpful, I don't think they've changed the situation on the ground significantly. I'd lay really good odds that less than 10% of the American church has read any of the essays. Probably a lot less. I definitely think Hinkley changed things as prophet and towards the end of his life even brought Pres. Packer along. So I think the Church's stance regarding faithful history has definitely changed. I'm skeptical the internet made as big a difference as some portrayed. But I definitely suspect the fear of the internet changed how certain prominent figures saw the problem. Rough Stone Rolling goes through things in passing in a fairly quick pace. It's still a long book to cover everything. But long before RSR came out there were plenty of essays in the Ensign on the multiple versions. I'm not sure it made that big a difference because frankly most people don't read the historical essays in the Ensign. I'm really skeptical of your later point. I think we have to distinguish between the heyday of anti-Mormon stuff. The CES Letter stuff was probably the culmination of that with nothing coming close sense. However I think those who mentioned YouTube or podcasts like Mormon Stories are right that what really happened is the nature of criticism changed. I'd also add that many books are still very critical but just don't have the chip on their shoulders that critical naturalistic writing in the 90's had. (In that sense both critics and apologists have matured a bit since the silly "wars" of the early 90s)
  8. That was true with Sorenson's initial model but not more recent ones. To my eyes more contemporary models have pretty well dealt with that. From the East to the West: The Problem of Directions in the Book of Mormon I don't think you need to have exact places for them to get the general geography working.
  9. I'm not sure that's fair at all. Certainly some faithful, yet ignorant, might have dismissed elements of them. But certainly in the BYU region much of this was pretty well known by a large number of faithful. Again I'm not sure that's fair. First I'm not sure I agree with your characteristic of cafeteria Mormon (nor the degree to which it is acceptable). But I'm also not quite sure the Givens have much to do with all this. But by and large I think it's long been the case that the Church doesn't care what you believe (outside of the temple questions) so long as you don't go around teaching it. There's long, long been a presumption that if you're at least striving to head in the right direction that the spirit will lead you over time to learning the correct doctrines. Umm. No. I think people who think it is not historical are wrong. I personally have troubles with them in leadership positions. But no one ever saw that as an excommunicable offense that I know of. That's an interesting point. I think it a huge problem right now that leads to things like Trump or conspiracy theories. But I do think you're right there. A closely related phenomena is the ability to find some community on the internet that believes similar to you so that your ideas are never really seriously challenged. This isn't just a challenge for the Church but for the country. I think you're right to a degree although I think you miss the most critical component. This is all only loosely connected to truth. (Witness InfoWars or similar movements on the left) Rather group identity becomes key so that some elements are fixated on to the degree they support group identity and policing of group boundaries. Group rather than truth becomes the focus. (And reddit groups are good examples of this)
  10. When you say doesn't really match up what are your big problems with the Yucatan to Chiapas/Guatemala region? It's not perfect but seems to line up reasonably well.
  11. Yes but look at how it uses it. "But behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words." So it's connecting faith and belief but how this then leads to conducting the test. It's a secondary effect. Exercise (use) your faith to conduct the test. If you don't have enough faith to conduct the test, let the desire to believe work until you can conduct the test. It's not desire to believe as faith but desire to believe as a ground to conduct the text. The idea is that there has to be a minimal amount of faith/belief to conduct the test. It's the means not the ends.
  12. Yes, but I was responding to the idea that this was due to religion changing. It seems like religion is pretty similar and people are just rejecting it not because it's changed but because of what it is. I'd dispute it's been hijacked. If anything I think that while the religious right makes up a significant portion of the GOP base, that the GOP has tended to do relatively little for them. Ask yourself what the major policy achievements by the religious right have been at the federal level since 1980 -- nearly 40 years ago. You can't same DOMA since that was bipartisan and pushed by Clinton. The end to partial birth abortion maybe, although again that was pretty widely disliked. Beyond that? Not a whole lot beyond a lot of failures. What the GOP has largely done (and sadly they've done this for most of their coalitions) is yell a lot about how much they agree with them and do nothing for them. Now if "hijacking" means rhetorically talking about the fall of morals and how bad abortion is then I guess you might have a point. The question though is whether that's going on more now than it was under Nixon and the rise of the silent majority. I'm really, really skeptical it is. If anything I'd suggest the opposite. And that was more than 50 years ago. Could you be more specific about what polls you're talking about and which church? I've not seen any poll suggesting that number. Again it's not clear what poll you're talking about Jana has a Next Mormons Survey but I don't think that's what you're referring to. In the comments people referred to the Pew and Gallup polls. I suspect you're thinking about that - likely the Nones and what they are reporting as their problem. However my point is that these aren't new things in religion, not that Nones don't feel that way. I've written about how they do feel that way.
  13. I don't see why you interpret that as a desire to believe rather than a desire to test. The "give place for a portion of my words" isn't saying to believe them but to try them out.
  14. It's using the desire. So the first act is the planting and he's trying to explain why someone would want to plant. Either they have a little faith or just a desire to find out so they plant or they have a lack of belief and don't plant.
  15. I was primarily going by a recent Bloggingheads TV interview of Adam Frank by Robert Wright who is a big QBism proponent. Frank said MWI was still the dominant interpretation so I assumed he'd know. But you raise a good question of what is it physicists do believe. I just don't know for sure. I found a poll from 2013 which found the Copenhagen interpretation was the overwhelming popular choice at 42%. Which was rather surprising to me. (Copenhagen always seemed a dodge driven by the net-kantianism that a lot of the German figures of the era were brought up with) Unfortunately it polled only 33 people at a Quantum Conference so it isn't too meaningful. Everything I found either refers to that poll or the earlier one from 1995 that was more pro-MWI. So I suspect we don't really know. I need to read up on QBism as it's still not entirely clear to me how it differs exactly from Copenhagen. Back in college I was enamored of Cramer's transactional interpretation of QM but I confess it's been so long I don't remember much about it. I rarely hear about it (supposedly there's a relativistic form around) so I assume it didn't really catch on. Fully agree. As soon as someone starts appealing to QM I generally tune out. Penrose's model was a bit interesting but I never fully bought it. (When was that? Late 90's?) These days I just think we don't know enough given the gaps between QM & GR, the relative disappointment of string theory, and lots of cosmological oddities still unexplained that I think it kind of pointless to get wrapped up in an interpretation of an incomplete theory. The last book on interpretation I bought was Philosophy Meets Physics at the Planck Scale. That was way back in 2001 and I kind of lost interest after that. But back in the day I did hear all the various models including trying to fit the observer in as an ontological feature to explain consciousness.