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wenglund

What Is The Solution?

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Yes, I think I can figure out what you might think a respectul rejection might look like.

I think you're saying a person respectfully rejects a belief by simply being nice while rejecting it.

... with the understanding that the belief has already been considered and is perfectly understood.

Is that right?

That is close enough for me. And, I do appreciate your effort.

I respectfully agree with that argument... if that is in fact what you are saying. :P

It pleases me to hear this.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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That is close enough for me. And, I do appreciate your effort.

And I thank you for yours. :P

This issue has actually been unclear to me for quite some time now.

If I had known it was that easy before I would have known I was doing it all along. <_<

It pleases me to hear this.

No problem. I will also respect your beliefs when I do not agree with them.

... with the understanding that I will understand what it is you believe. :unsure:

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I can certainly see how amicably resolving familial religious differences can often be more difficult/complicated than doing the same between relative strangers on the internet. In the latter case, if nothing else, we can just ignore each other or go our separate ways without much negative impact to our respective lives; whereas with the former, the wrong move can tear families apart and devistate the member for long periods of time.

However, as mentioned on another thread, I do think such resolutions are possible (if not hightly probable) and the need more significant (the stakes are much higher with family members than with relative strangers).

From what I have learned, the trick is not in both parties expecting to get everything they want, but in working out a resolution that is a win-win, and fair and acceptable for all parties.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

Wenglund,

I am the only member of the Church in my family. My brother is a hard core atheist and Communist and my parents are socialists or at the very minimum hard left wing Democrats. Oddly, somehow I turned out to be an intensly religous person and a Republican. How did that all happen ?? Good question !

Anyway, needless to say, religion and politics do not get peaceably discussed when I vist with anyone of them. However, I have found that it is their position that I am wrong rather than me saying that they are wrong. In my "wrongness", they basically say that it was my choice and not their choice. As they pat me on the head and say that "even though I am a Marmin, I am still a good boy."

I love my family a lot and know that in the Spirit World they will get an opportunity to learn the truth about Heavenly Father's existence and reality. I have found that on rare occassions I can peacefully ask them to take the lessons or at least read the BOM but it is politely and lovingly rejected. What is a guy to do ? I don't have the answer except to love them as I do and know that in the end, Heavenly Father is fair and will give them an opportunity to embrace the Gospel if they will.

I have sought understanding with them but there hasn't been even an attempt on their part to really understand. We do, however, get along well.

Best wishes for you in your quest.

Volvoman

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Wenglund,

I am the only member of the Church in my family. My brother is a hard core atheist and Communist and my parents are socialists or at the very minimum hard left wing Democrats. Oddly, somehow I turned out to be an intensly religous person and a Republican. How did that all happen ?? Good question !

Anyway, needless to say, religion and politics do not get peaceably discussed when I vist with anyone of them. However, I have found that it is their position that I am wrong rather than me saying that they are wrong. In my "wrongness", they basically say that it was my choice and not their choice. As they pat me on the head and say that "even though I am a Marmin, I am still a good boy."

I love my family a lot and know that in the Spirit World they will get an opportunity to learn the truth about Heavenly Father's existence and reality. I have found that on rare occassions I can peacefully ask them to take the lessons or at least read the BOM but it is politely and lovingly rejected. What is a guy to do ? I don't have the answer except to love them as I do and know that in the end, Heavenly Father is fair and will give them an opportunity to embrace the Gospel if they will.

I have sought understanding with them but there hasn't been even an attempt on their part to really understand. We do, however, get along well.

Best wishes for you in your quest.

Volvoman

I very much appreciate the well wishes--particularly coming from a "volvoman" (I have had my share of Volvo's over the years--two sedans and one station wagon, though that was back in the day when I affectionately would refer to them as "econoboxes". I would love to own the 07 station wagon, but it is well outside my transportation budget.)

You asked: "what is a guy to do?"

Well...I think the way you are handling things now is as good as may be expected. Even though your family may not understand you, or even not seek to understand you at this time, and perhaps may even go so far as to treat you in a light-hearted patronizing way, the important elements of love and getting along are there. That, to me, is great!

For what it is worth, when the time is right, it may be a good thing to broach the subject of mutual "respect" with them (perhaps using the term as I explained it to Paul Ray earlier in the thread)--letting them know that you understand and respect their point of view (though you may see it differently), and ask if they would respect you point of view (though they may see things differently).

One of the ways I have found effective in broaching the subject is to ask, regarding a specific issue you may be discussing at the time: "are you tollerant of opposing views?" and "can you accept and acknowledge that a reasonable person may view it differently?"

Whatever the case, sometimes actions and outcomes speak louder than words. If your family is eventually (if not to some degree already) able to recognize how the restored gospel of Christ has helped make you peaceful and happy and a better person and better able to love and be loved, if not also embewed with edifying passion and a functional sense of direction, then I think that may have more of an impact on their coming around to understanding your beliefs and respecting them (whether they convert or not) than hours of debate and discussions.

Then, too, if right, the Spirit may intercede and touch their heart and minds.

Either way, I hope the best for you and your family. ;-)

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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What changes things for me, though, was to stop viewing both parties as enemy combatents, or as victims and perpetrators, but as fellow children of God who have unintentionally picked dysfunctional ways of socializing and working out our differences. I figured out that we were going about this the wrong way, and the solution was to finding a functional means of resolution--a way that uplifts rather than degrades, edifies rather than hurts, and a win-win for all parties. I figured out that it isn't so much about being "right", but about satisfying the basic human need in all of us to love and be loved, to respect and be respected.

So, no, I am not advocating going along to get along. Rather, I am suggesting finding functional ways of resolving differences.

Now, you are certainly free to leave this board and go to where you feel your faith won't be under attach--and given your hopeless perception of things, I wouldn't blame you a bit (not that I am in to blaming anyway). But, I think in doing so you will miss out on an opportunity to be involved in changing things for the better. And, who knows? You may even pick up some conflict resolution pointers or social skills that may prove useful with family and friends, and in various other walks of life.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

While I understand what you are trying to say, the truth is we are in a "war" that started in Heaven when the first of all critics tried to overthrow the plan of salvation and destroy our agency, that war as far as we understand it was a war of words and our cheif weapons was our testimonies of the Gospel. I am not trying to be melodramatic here I am just being a realist. Some of our critics may come from a position of misunderstanding and some ex-mo's from hurt feelings and "sour grapes" and some of their claims may be legitamate. (The so-called culture and individual memebers aloofness or arrgance is not what I seek to defend, I defend the doctrine and teachings of the Church.) However from long experience I have found that most critics are just trying to justify their own position (Apostacy or Anti-) by tearing others down, and so I have little tolerance for that. It is true as far as these boards are concerned we should try to keep a civil tone and let the "Golden rule" be our guide. But I see little "agreement" over points of doctrine could be reached in many cases. I believe the mods keep civility in check when our emotions get the best of our better judgement. Admitedly the problem with the TBM position is we are basically saying that we are the "only true and living church on the face of the earth" which I understand is very offensive to most. However the rest of the quote: "speaking to the Church collectively and not individually" is often forgotten, yes as individuals we many times fall short of the standard of the Gospel, but collectively the Church is true and if you disagree you are wrong. So we have the unpleasant task of trying to help people see the truth without offending them by telling them they are wrong at the same time. I think that is why the Lord said the following:
(D&C 50:13-23) "Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this questionĂ¢??unto what were ye ordained? To preach my gospel by the Spirit, even the Comforter which was sent forth to teach the truth... Verily I say unto you, he that is ordained of me and sent forth to preach the word of truth by the Comforter, in the Spirit of truth, doth he preach it by the Spirit of truth or some other way? And if it be by some other way it is not of God. And again, he that receiveth the word of truth, doth he receive it by the Spirit of truth or some other way? If it be some other way it is not of God. Therefore, why is it that ye cannot understand and know, that he that receiveth the word by the Spirit of truth receiveth it as it is preached by the Spirit of truth? Wherefore, he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoice together. And that which doth not edify is not of God, and is darkness."
I have quoted this many times on this board, and I do understand it is especially speaking of Missionaries that are sent out to teach, however I believe that the Gospel can only be understood in this manner. If we try diplomacy or harsh attach tactics both are "not of God." So I guess we must descide what it is we want to do here...are we just here to tick off our enemies? Are we here to just "get the last word" in an arguement? Are we doing damage control? Are we trying to teach? Are we trying to understand? Are we searching for truth? So I guess it boils down to why we are on these boards in the first place? Everyone must answer this for him/herself. I guess before we post we should ask and try to answer those questions for ourselves.

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However from long experience I have found that most critics are just trying to justify their own position (Apostacy or Anti-) by tearing others down, and so I have little tolerance for that. It is true as far as these boards are concerned we should try to keep a civil tone and let the "Golden rule" be our guide. But I see little "agreement" over points of doctrine could be reached in many cases.

This has also been my experience. As long as the basic premises are not agreed on it's pretty hard to have any kind of concensus, and with Mormonism there are some basic premises which are the foundation of our faith and which contradict what is taught in general outside the church. As long as a critic understands what basis we are coming from they might be able to have a discussion as to why we do certain things. I frankly have no interest in why they disbelive such things as that is their choice. I only ask that they not do character assassinations on the members of the church who still faithfully follow and the prophets both former and present, who though flawed, were faithful in carrying out the duties God had assigned them.

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This is an excellent question, and well deserving of further consideration.

I suspect, though, that the word "respect" can mean different things to different people in different contexts, and so I can't really speak authoritatively for anyone but myself.

For me, in the context of opposing views, I understand respect to not only mean respecting the right of other people to believe what they believe (as you said), and respecting their right to declare, without distracting interruptions or premature dismissals, their beliefs in the marketplace of ideas, but also respect their belief enough, and where practical, to give it thoughtful consideration and attempt to understand it as fully and as accurately as possible, as well as respecting that from their point of view, their beliefs are, for the most part, reasonable and rational--though I may see things quite differently.

In short, it is treating the opposing beliefs of others in the same manner that I would wish my beliefs to be treated.

This does not mean that while I honor the sanctity of the human body, that I am obliged to respect, in every sense, the brutal actions of a rapist. Not at all. In fact, I believe respect for humanity in general would cause me to feel outraged and indignent about such actions.

But, that is an extreme case dealing with extreme actions, and what I am proposing has more to do with garden variety ideas and differences of opinions.

At least that is the way I look at it. Others may see it differently, and I will respect that. ;-)

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

This is a beautiful post Wade...and I hope you are given the opportunity to teach others this principle. The Golden Rule is indeed the common ground that all good religious beliefs teach -- whether theist or atheist. To respect another is not to take on their position. It is simply to give them the mutual respect you would like them to give you. You said it so well throughout your post.

There are certainly people that do this better than others, whether in politics, business, or religion. I'm always impressed when my lawyer friends can seemingly go for the jugular in the courtroom, then shake hands and sincerely care for the opposing lawyer when they step out. I think it is possible to do that here. It is a developed skill to discuss and debate principles of faith, then show a sincere, unconditional concern for the other. It takes time to master this trait...and it is a goal of mine -- but I have a long way to go!

As it relates to Mormonism, I suspect that for a member to give a never-mo, or ex-mo, total respect, might give the impression that "he" is weak in his testimony. I submit that it is exactly the opposite. One who doesn't project the need to convince the other of their wrongness, and shows true respect for opposing points of view are the one that are truly confident in their convictions.

Wade, I think you've developed that skill very well, and I applaud you for it.

:P

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For me, in the context of opposing views, I understand respect to not only mean respecting the right of other people to believe what they believe (as you said), and respecting their right to declare, without distracting interruptions or premature dismissals, their beliefs in the marketplace of ideas, but also respect their belief enough, and where practical, to give it thoughtful consideration and attempt to understand it as fully and as accurately as possible

Why? I have no problem with respecting another's choice, but I see no benefit in giving thoughtful consideration to why they might have made that choice, especially when that consideration involves rejecting the very tenents of my belief. Now we are not talking about someone who may have left over non-doctrinal reasons, for example getting offended, as I think we do need to understand what happened in those situations. But when the disagreement is doctrinal and the person has already made the decision they no longer believe you can consider and understand all you want and it won't change anything.

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As it relates to Mormonism, I suspect that for a member to give a never-mo, or ex-mo, total respect, might give the impression that "he" is weak in his testimony. I submit that it is exactly the opposite. One who doesn't project the need to convince the other of their wrongness, and shows true respect for opposing points of view are the one that are truly confident in their convictions.

I think you are confusing fervent and yes sometimes heated discussions on a message board with respecting the rights of a person to choose. And by the way it seems to me it is the critics of the church who come on an LDS site and feel the need to convince others of their wrongness. The LDS who respond are trying to correct misconceptions, misunderstandings and misinformation. You can believe whatever you want. But then why not just go live your life according to your beliefs instead of always having to explain it.

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As it relates to Mormonism, I suspect that for a member to give a never-mo, or ex-mo, total respect, might give the impression that "he" is weak in his testimony. I submit that it is exactly the opposite. One who doesn't project the need to convince the other of their wrongness, and shows true respect for opposing points of view are the one that are truly confident in their convictions.

:P

I could just as easily make the same statement in reverse: "As it relates to Mormonism, I suspect that for a never-mo, or ex-mo to give a TBM member, total respect, might give the impression that "he" is weak in his "convictions". I submit that it is exactly the opposite. One who doesn't project the need to convince the other of their wrongness, and shows true respect for opposing points of view are the one that are truly confident in their convictions."

In fact it is not possible to give "total respect" to someone who always denies or critizes the beliefs that one holds dear, so conflict is always there it just may be more diplomatic at some times than it is others. <_<

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I could just as easily make the same statement in reverse: "As it relates to Mormonism, I suspect that for a never-mo, or ex-mo to give a TBM member, total respect, might give the impression that "he" is weak in his "convictions". I submit that it is exactly the opposite. One who doesn't project the need to convince the other of their wrongness, and shows true respect for opposing points of view are the one that are truly confident in their convictions."

Yes...good point...and I agree.

Where it seems we might be viewing things a bit differently is that I have no interest in convincing you or anybody here that they are "wrong." You have your convictions, I have mine. You may be right...as I may be. I've said this many times before, but perhaps I may be lumped in with some of the militant ex, or anti-mormons...I am interested in having more active LDS members understand that we (and I can only speak for many like me) have reason to leave -- reasons that have nothing to do with being "offended," or for a need to lead a sinful lifestyle, as some have expressed.

So like Wade, I see civil dialogue helpful to get us past the anger and bickering that happens so often in this community. You say Joseph received a vision, I say he did not. But that difference of belief doesn't need to create enemies. I can respect you for what you believe, and wish you happiness in your spiritual journey with that core foundation. And I hope you could grant me the same respect.

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I think you are confusing fervent and yes sometimes heated discussions on a message board with respecting the rights of a person to choose. And by the way it seems to me it is the critics of the church who come on an LDS site and feel the need to convince others of their wrongness. The LDS who respond are trying to correct misconceptions, misunderstandings and misinformation. You can believe whatever you want. But then why not just go live your life according to your beliefs instead of always having to explain it.

I hear this line of thinking often...and I can understand your perception. The reason I choose to post here sometimes (besides that I enjoy a good discussion about religion, and I have a job that gives me a few 10 minute breaks throughout the day), is that I live in the heart of Zion here in Utah. Not a day goes by without the LDS culture impacting my lifestyle. I DO live in an area now where there are more non-mos than LDS...but even the members are very friendly to us heathens.

Like Wade has said, just discussing our differences makes us better neighbors, I believe.

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While I understand what you are trying to say, the truth is we are in a "war" that started in Heaven when the first of all critics tried to overthrow the plan of salvation and destroy our agency, that war as far as we understand it was a war of words and our cheif weapons was our testimonies of the Gospel.

I can respect this point of view (having strongly held it once myself, and still do in some ways). What tempored things for me, though, is in reading about the lengthy an brutal war in the book of Ether in metaphoric relation to the "war of words" engaged in since the pre-existence. With the Jaredites, a whole nation was wiped out in battle, right down to the very last person. I don't know about you, but that tragic story vexed me with the questions of: "What was the point?", and "was annihilation necessary?" and "wasn't there a better way to resolve the differences?", etc.?

I used to be of the mind that when verbal arrows were presumably flung at my faith in online discussions, I would fire back with what I deemed verbal howitzers, in hopes of dissuading further flinging of arrows. What I found, though, was that my aggressive repsonses merely hightened the aggression. And while my background in behavioralism taught me to anticipate such escalations, the expectation was that at some point in the near future the aggression would subside. But, it didn't. I found that metaphorically the mortal wounding and severing of limbs on both sides heightened the bloodthurstiness and spurned on the "war", and feed the cycle of violence, and absent change, I figure things would end up much the same as with the Jaredites.

So, I started to ask myself the same thought-provoking question that vexed my mind about the Jaredites. Consequently, I decided to find a better way of resolving the presumed "war" between critics and apologists that wasn't pointless or destined to mutual annihilation.

I am not trying to be melodramatic here I am just being a realist. Some of our critics may come from a position of misunderstanding and some ex-mo's from hurt feelings and "sour grapes" and some of their claims may be legitamate. (The so-called culture and individual memebers aloofness or arrgance is not what I seek to defend, I defend the doctrine and teachings of the Church.) However from long experience I have found that most critics are just trying to justify their own position (Apostacy or Anti-) by tearing others down, and so I have little tolerance for that.

I would caution against ascribing motives to those with opposing views--and this goes for critics in relation to apologist as well as in reverse. Given the respective biases, there is a good chance that such mindreadings may result in inaccurate oversimplifications and sterotyping, if not also unwitting projections.

Besides, the motive is not as important to me, and has less impact on me, than expressed attitudes and sentiments. As long as the expressed attitudes and sentiments are respectful (as previously explained), the motive is of little importance. Right?

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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Why? I have no problem with respecting another's choice, but I see no benefit in giving thoughtful consideration to why they might have made that choice, especially when that consideration involves rejecting the very tenents of my belief. Now we are not talking about someone who may have left over non-doctrinal reasons, for example getting offended, as I think we do need to understand what happened in those situations. But when the disagreement is doctrinal and the person has already made the decision they no longer believe you can consider and understand all you want and it won't change anything.

Doesn't it depend on one's ultimate objective when participating in forums such as this? If one's intent is merely to express one's point of view (whether people may find it of interest or value or not), and if one also is not looking to affect change in one's perspective or the perspective of others (even in positive and enriching ways), then there is little or no need to consider (respect) other points of view. However, if one wishes to change the nature of interfaith discourse (making it more meaningful and productive, civil and mutually edifying) and improve interfaith relations, then the things I suggested may prove helpful.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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I can respect this point of view (having strongly held it once myself, and still do in some ways). What tempored things for me, though, is in reading about the lengthy an brutal war in the book of Ether in metaphoric relation to the "war of words" engaged in since the pre-existence. With the Jaredites, a whole nation was wiped out in battle, right down to the very last person. I don't know about you, but that tragic story vexed me with the questions of: "What was the point?", and "was annihilation necessary?" and "wasn't there a better way to resolve the differences?", etc.?

I used to be of the mind that when verbal arrows were presumably flung at my faith in online discussions, I would fire back with what I deemed verbal howitzers, in hopes of dissuading further flinging of arrows. What I found, though, was that my aggressive repsonses merely hightened the aggression. And while my background in behavioralism taught me to anticipate such escalations, the expectation was that at some point in the near future the aggression would subside. But, it didn't. I found that metaphorically the mortal wounding and severing of limbs on both sides heightened the bloodthurstiness and spurned on the "war", and feed the cycle of violence, and absent change, I figure things would end up much the same as with the Jaredites.

So, I started to ask myself the same thought-provoking question that vexed my mind about the Jaredites. Consequently, I decided to find a better way of resolving the presumed "war" between critics and apologists that wasn't pointless or destined to mutual annihilation.

I would caution against ascribing motives to those with opposing views--and this goes for critics in relation to apologist as well as in reverse. Given the respective biases, there is a good chance that such mindreadings may result in inaccurate oversimplifications and sterotyping, if not also unwitting projections.

Besides, the motive is not as important to me, and has less impact on me, than expressed attitudes and sentiments. As long as the expressed attitudes and sentiments are respectful (as previously explained), the motive is of little importance. Right?

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

I believe that the comparison of this "war of words" to the genocide in the book of Ether is not a valid one. Both sides had become evil and were basically fighting for political gain and revenge, one side was maybe a little more righteous than the other, but since Ether had to hide in a cave and come out at night apparently he was not popular with either side. So I do not feel it is a fair comparison. As for ascribing motives it is true I cannot see into their hearts any more than they can into mine, all I can see is the fruits of their words. If it undermines faith in God and Jesus Christ and His Church then it is inspired of Satan, either unwittingly as a tool or an active conspirator. As I already stated I do believe in using the "golden rule" in our discourse with those that oppose the truth. However I believe that the very nature of the discussion (apologetics) is one that is adversarial. You can be diplomatic, you can be respectful, but still the very position we take makes it argumentative. I suppose that is why the Church has no "official" apologetic site. Most of us on these boards are not "professional apologists" we are speaking from our own personal knowledge and testimony, so often what we say is stereotypical and oversimplified. It is also the nature of message boards to be a barrier to complete communication, we are unable to look our adversary in the eye, to read body language, to hear the tone of voice. All we get is the written word and perhaps an emoticon or two to help us judge intent, this makes total communication on these boards unreliable at best.

You also raise a question in my mind by a reply you made to Deborah, the purpose of these boards. Are we here to have interfaith discourse? I could be wrong but I do not think that the purpose of the "Mormon Apologetics Discussion Board" is for interfaith relations or discourse. Looking at the very definition of apologetics:

From (Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) "Apologists are authors, writers, editors of scientific logs or academic journals, and leaders known for taking on the points in arguments, conflicts or positions that are either placed under popular scrutinies or viewed under persecutory examinations. The term comes from the Greek word apologia, meaning defense of a position against an attack."
So in it's broadest term apologetics is a defense of a position against an attack. So again I see this as a battle or "war" of light and truth against error and falsehood. We can be more kind and considerate of others feelings, but often the nature of the "defence" is "hard" as Nephi noted:
(1 Nephi 16:1-3) "And now it came to pass that after I, Nephi, had made an end of speaking to my brethren, behold they said unto me: Thou hast declared unto us hard things, more than we are able to bear. And it came to pass that I said unto them that I knew that I had spoken hard things against the wicked, according to the truth; and the righteous have I justified, and testified that they should be lifted up at the last day; wherefore, the guilty taketh the truth to be hard, for it cutteth them to the very center. And now my brethren, if ye were righteous and were willing to hearken to the truth, and give heed unto it, that ye might walk uprightly before God, then ye would not murmur because of the truth, and say: Thou speakest hard things against us."
So it can sometimes seem as though we are being harsh, when in reality we are just boldly declaring the truth which is often offensive to the wicked. For me the purpose of this board is for defending the doctrine, beliefs, and practises of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and explaining our beliefs and defending them against the attacks from enemies, critics and Anti-Mormons. I do not believe I can learn anything or be edified by anyone who's main goal is to undermine my faith and sully the good name of the Church that belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ.

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I believe that the comparison of this "war of words" to the genocide in the book of Ether is not a valid one. Both sides had become evil and were basically fighting for political gain and revenge, one side was maybe a little more righteous than the other, but since Ether had to hide in a cave and come out at night apparently he was not popular with either side. So I do not feel it is a fair comparison. As for ascribing motives it is true I cannot see into their hearts any more than they can into mine, all I can see is the fruits of their words. If it undermines faith in God and Jesus Christ and His Church then it is inspired of Satan, either unwittingly as a tool or an active conspirator. As I already stated I do believe in using the "golden rule" in our discourse with those that oppose the truth. However I believe that the very nature of the discussion (apologetics) is one that is adversarial. You can be diplomatic, you can be respectful, but still the very position we take makes it argumentative. I suppose that is why the Church has no "official" apologetic site. Most of us on these boards are not "professional apologists" we are speaking from our own personal knowledge and testimony, so often what we say is stereotypical and oversimplified. It is also the nature of message boards to be a barrier to complete communication, we are unable to look our adversary in the eye, to read body language, to hear the tone of voice. All we get is the written word and perhaps an emoticon or two to help us judge intent, this makes total communication on these boards unreliable at best.

You also raise a question in my mind by a reply you made to Deborah, the purpose of these boards. Are we here to have interfaith discourse? I could be wrong but I do not think that the purpose of the "Mormon Apologetics Discussion Board" is for interfaith relations or discourse. Looking at the very definition of apologetics:So in it's broadest term apologetics is a defense of a position against an attack. So again I see this as a battle or "war" of light and truth against error and falsehood. We can be more kind and considerate of others feelings, but often the nature of the "defence" is "hard" as Nephi noted:So it can sometimes seem as though we are being harsh, when in reality we are just boldly declaring the truth which is often offensive to the wicked. For me the purpose of this board is for defending the doctrine, beliefs, and practises of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and explaining our beliefs and defending them against the attacks from enemies, critics and Anti-Mormons. I do not believe I can learn anything or be edified by anyone who's main goal is to undermine my faith and sully the good name of the Church that belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Again, I can accept and respect that you see it this way (having once viewed it somewhat the same way myself), though I sincerely hope it works for you better than it did for me.

Thanks, -Wade Englund-

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