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OGHoosier

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Everything posted by OGHoosier

  1. I've always found in-person vocal debates to be tests of showmanship just as much as they are tests of evidence and logic. Personal presence, gravitas, dramatic timing, humor...these things do not truth decide, but they sure can affect our impressions of who won a debate and thus who was correct. I personally am not interested in identifying the best grandstander out of Dehlin, Ritner, Gee, Muhlestein, and RFM, so I'd be just as happy if they stick with the texts. In-person debates rarely allow for much more than soundbites anyway.
  2. I can respect that. It was an interesting conversation and you've put me on a new research topic, so thank you! I've seen you around the board but never actually engaged with you, so I'm glad I got the chance.
  3. I freely confess to arguing within a "Smith was the sole translator" paradigm because I find a conspiracy roping in Cowdery, the Whitmers, and the Smiths untenable. It's just too broad and trial-tested and requires too much dismissal of eyewitness testimony for me to feel comfortable accepting it. The Book of Mormon manuscript is manifestly a dictation, which makes no sense if Cowdery and Whitmer are already in on it. It's unlikely that the educated Cowdery, demonstrably prone to soaring language, would be behind a book with such grammar and relatively bland didactic tendencies as the Book of
  4. As I'm sure you know, a summary is not the same thing as the text. Nevertheless, I don't know what text you are referring to, so there's not much more I can say. Since I don't believe Cowdery or Whitmer were conspirators/co-creators of the text, I find arguments that use them as sources to be unconvincing. The consensus surrounding Neibuhr's map is that it was too far away for Smith to reliably access; a traveling copy must be posited. Then there's the relevant time depth and the fact that the maps referenced all complicate the account of the the Jerusalem-Bountiful journey in ways
  5. One might say the professors...went medieval on each other.
  6. Timbuktu is famous. Nihm is minutiae. Anyways, as to your point about maps published near Joseph: https://journal.interpreterfoundation.org/joseph-and-the-amazing-technicolor-dream-map-part-2-of-2/. It's from 2016, so it's possible that new information has come forward of which I am not aware. If so, I'd love to hear it. The long and the short of it is: the closest map with references to Nihm/Nehhm to Joseph that we can identify with certainty was 200 miles away from Palmyra and 300 miles away from Harmony. Not exactly close. So, no map with the relevant information can be demonstrated to be i
  7. There's probably parts of it she doesn't agree with, so she doesn't see it as the Restored Gospel full stop. But there's reason to believe that she meant it when she said that Joseph was receiving revelations.
  8. It's evidence in that we have a location referenced in 1 Nephi which was a) unlikely to be known to Joseph Smith, but also b) in the appropriate place chronologically, which was impossible for him (or anyone else in the world) to have known, unlike most of the names on the maps he theoretically (but improbably) could have referenced. Right place, right time, right function, right integration into the narrative. This is a whole thread in the making. You've given me a good discussion of categories of historical evidence, but not on how they fit together in everyone's subjective
  9. Perhaps it's time for a break then. We're talking past each other. For what it's worth, I didn't say that bias makes it a tie. I said that our judgements as to what constitutes evidence precedes any argument based on the evidence. That's why magisterial handwaves to "the evidence" aren't convincing unless you share the same rules about what evidence should be expected. For my part, I've read the papers talking about what the Book of Mormon says about its own geography and I have found them, personally and subjectively as all evaluation is, to be strong enough evidence to convince m
  10. You'll find examples at the beginning of the thread. Nahom and general correspondence with Arabia are witnesses of First Nephi. The seal of Malkiyahu. Stubb's research in Uto-Aztecan. LiDAR when contrasted with the views of archaeology in Joseph Smith's time up to later. Literally everything Kevin Christensen has posted. We've been over this. If you don't find it convincing, then so be it. Everyone has a different threshold for what they consider to be evidence, its strength, etc.: if it were not so, disagreement among humans would not exist. But we have to be aware of this fact, aware of our
  11. The discussion of paradigms and the definition of evidence is no "resort." It's an establishment of first principles. Your stance on the matter, on the other hand, indicates that you have chosen to accept the paradigm of evidence adopted by the critics. Did you consider the counterarguments when you did so? Are you justified in ignoring them now? You certainly have not engaged with them here. Even your examples illustrate the flaws with a simplistic view of "evidence", and why different types of evidence matter. If you were trying to persuade a flat-earther, you would show them a picture
  12. Except that Jenkins asked for a specific type of evidence. Pottery, inscriptions, etc. We don't have that specific type of evidence, obviously, so if that's the style of evidence you demand, then so be it. Hamblin's point is that that's not the only thing that counts as evidence, that there are other types of evidence that we do have which are more reasonable to expect, and that you need to have a discussion about what counts as evidence before weighing evidence.
  13. If something akin to Nahom was found in the New World than the challenge would be successfully answered. I wouldn't complain. But I freely acknowledge that such an outcome is highly improbable, and that defangs your objection. The overall point is that, even if the Nephites existed, such a find would be highly improbable. Therefore, the failure to meet that challenge can't constitute evidence against the Nephites because, again, it demands that which would be improbable even if the tested theory were true. The whole crux of the Jenkins v. Hamblin debate is that you need to have a firm und
  14. However the challenge is meaningless because it asks for that which would be improbable even if the tested theory is true.
  15. I think Sheshonq would probably be really upset if her hydrocephalus was restored. Thankfully, given the doctrine concerning the Resurrection, we can be confident that will not happen. Autocorrect strikes again I see. More seriously though: your point is?
  16. That comes down to differences in interpretation and perspective between individuals, imo. As does this whole thing, really.
  17. If I remember correctly, he wasn't Professor Gee's teacher in the sense that Gee received special tutelage, but he was on the advisory board for Gee's degree at the University of Chicago until Gee asked for him to be removed. The university removed Ritner and Gee went on to get the degree. The reason for Gee's appeal and Ritner's removal has never emerged.
  18. Papers published in Interpreter are peer-reviewed, I believe the same holds for the Journal of Book of Mormon Studies. The peer reviewers are generally members of the Church, which prompts some to consider it invalid peer review at times. If I may digress (and reveal a degree of my defensiveness in so doing), I personally don't think that's a valid critique as, outside the Mormon Studies world, there's not a requirement for absolute ideological diversity in peer reviews - if it were so, every Biology department would have to have a Discovery Institute peer reviewer on speed dial. Furtherm
  19. The sources I gave to bluebell in my post are commentaries on that question.
  20. Book of Mormon videos are basically the distilled-for-popular-consumption version of the papers available on the Book of Mormon Central archive. Those feature more detail, scholarly attribution, etc. As you might expect, scholars outside the whole Mormon Studies debates don't take notice.
  21. We have. @Robert F. Smith and @gav have pointed out that Ritner's reconstruction of Facsimile 1 is likely wrong. But beyond that, we've stepped beyond the minutiae and lampooned the central pillar beneath Egyptological attacks on the Book of Abraham: that the presence of the Book of the Dead surrounding Facsimile 1 is a defeater for the Book of Abraham's divine provenance.
  22. You need to stop abusing Terryl Givens to try to make your points. Givens was talking about the facsimiles, not all of Joseph's scripture.
  23. Hold onto your butts, folks. In my opinion, there is evidence for Book of Mormon historicity. I wouldn't say proof: proof is in fact not to be expected, per Dallin H. Oaks. That said, if God chooses to grant it, I won't complain. A great one-stop shop for Church scholarship on the Book of Mormon is Book of Mormon Central. Their archives have papers and research on all sorts of things Book of Mormon, from apologetics to theology. There's also a difference, as Ben McGuire mentions, between historicity and verisimilitude. One of my favorite parts about the Book of Mormon is the onomast
  24. John would likely have an extremely eclectic form of English which could account for multiple authors issue, along the lines of JarMan's comment. Then again, I've always thought that a connection between the Nephites and the Petrine church via the Three Nephites was almost guaranteed. My thoughts on Mormon's teachings on faith, hope, and charity was that he was exposed to the teachings of Paul by way of the Three Nephites bringing over a "greatest hits" list. Seems like a little deus ex machina, but we're a religion. Deus ex machina is the point. Edit: On the flip side, now I'm ima
  25. Indeed. Even the higher canons of critical scholarship, like deutero-Isaiah, have their critics (see Avraham Gileadi for one). The dance of scholars will continue until the end of time.
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