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About MrShorty

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  1. I wonder if part of the problem here is that the Arkansas lawmakers failed to describe what they mean by "creationism". When someone mentions to me "creationism" (without qualification) I automatically assume they are talking about the fundamentalist Christian young-earth version. I know there are Christian old-earth versions as well as the existence of multiple other religions with their own accounts of how the Earth and the universe came to be, but I usually have to be very intentional about bringing those possibilities to mind. I guess I wonder if the law could avoid these kinds of accusati
  2. The thing I see with this question is how does Elder Andersen's talk help in determining where the dividing line/range is? The Church officially acknowledges the existence of these gray areas: 1) When life and health of mother/baby are at risk. As noted in the link I shared earlier as, and Elder Andersen's talk follows the same pattern, all anecdotes shared by GAs that illustrate risk to the mother and/or baby illustrate/promote "accept the risk and see if you are as fortunate as the examples we share" choice. I'm not aware of any positive examples of "mom balanced the risks of keeping/te
  3. Isn't this a big part of the whole prophetic fallibility thing,though? I expect you are correct that Pres. Nelson and others are teaching what they believe they know to be true. I even expect they are quite confident in their ability to discern truth (I'm reminded of this essay: https://journal.interpreterfoundation.org/yes-its-true-but-i-dont-think-they-like-to-hear-it-quite-that-way-what-spencer-w-kimball-told-elaine-cannon/ ). I'm sure Pres. Young was sure he knew the (now disavowed) reasons for denying Africans the priesthood. There are other examples, if we want to rehearse them. For me i
  4. I think this is an excellent, succinct way to frame the question (unless it is just posed rhetorically). Somewhere between "a callous woman who decides at 20 or 30 weeks that she just doesn't want to be pregnant anymore" and "terminating an ectopic pregnancy because the chances of mother and baby surviving is essentially nil." is a line/point (probably more of a gray area than a bright division, I think) that makes abortions on one side of that line morally acceptable and abortions on the other side immoral. I think my main criticism of Elder Andersen's talk is that he brought nothing new to t
  5. Thinking about the BYUs deciding not to accept Pell grants and similar need based federal financial aid, how would that change the student body makeup at Church schools? Does it effectively push the poorer students out making space for richer students? Or would the Church offer equivalent need based grants to replace Pell grants? In addition to, "if you want to grow a beard or drink coffee, you should consider a different university and make room for other students who want to follow our strict honor code," would we also add, "if you need a Pell grant in order to attend university, you should
  6. Agreed. I'm still trying to understand what it means. Granting grace and patience and withholding judgement as you describe are certainly good parts of this, but I'm not sure that merely withholding judgement on a leader's righteousness is a full description of what it means to be loyal. I frequently observe that this discussion often focuses on the leader, when what really wants to be discussed is the teaching/practice in question -- conflating loyalty to the leader/leaders/Church with loyalty to a specific teaching/practice. Present issue I think illustrates. When we "accuse" the Church
  7. @Calm I agree that there are logistical difficulties in using such large chunks of money to "help" people. Done wrong, we can hurt more than help. At this point, I acknowledge that those difficulties exist and figure that people smarter than me can cross the bridge of figuring out how best to help when we come to it. I don't doubt that God did tell leaders (via Elder Tanner et al) to get the Church out of debt and build up a reserve fund. The question I see going around might be best expressed as, "Did God tell you to build a reserve fund 15-20x the Church's annual budget?" I've been a
  8. Being Easter weekend, I hope there is much more said about Christ than about money. One conference talk addressing this issue might be nice. At the same time, I think a Liahona article or a Church News article or even a Newsroom press release could be adequate.
  9. An interesting "accusation" (perhaps more inflammatory than you intended, but I'm using it anyway). Everywhere I see the Church's rain day fund discussed, I see people asking something like, "why so much?" I don't know that I need the "transparency" of financial statements, but some transparency regarding goals and purposes philosophy of having such a large rainy day fund would be useful to know. So far, the official word from the Church seems to be, "we are doing the same as we teach our members -- live within your budget and save for the future." If this is the only explanation even fo
  10. At the risk of ignoring the specific legal case under discussion, @Analytics You cite a few sources claiming that 1x to 3x of annual budget is a good guide for a Church rainy day fund. What do you make of Aaron Miller's (who "teaches nonprofit management and ethics in the Romney Institute at BYU") claim that it is quite common for charitable endowments to be about 20x the size of their annual budget. (see the section "Is saving $1B a year for a rainy day fund wrong or abnormal?" here: https://publicsquaremag.org/editorials/the-100-billion-mormon-church-story-a-contextual-analysis/ ) He estimat
  11. I took a picture of the same rainbow on the same day with Y mountain in the background from SW Provo (though the Y itself was hidden behind a bunch of trees. It seems possible to me that, from campus, the rainbow may have easily appeared to be between the observer and the Y.
  12. In my experiences with both, I agree that I did not get more out of one presentation or the other, but I did get something different out of each presentation. Between both presentations, I think I got more out of the endowment than I would have got limited to exclusively one or the other. I was still in my first decade when the Logan temple was renovated in the late '70s. I know there were many who did not appreciate the "gutting" of that temple. What is being described here sounds like more of a gutting than a remodel. It's rooted more in sentimentality than eternal truth, but there it i
  13. So do you see the epigenetics talked about in the OP part of how the body correctly imitates the spirit, or are these epigenetic influences part of how the fallen world interferes with the body's imitation of the spirit? In asking this, I cannot help but recall that the Church once incorrectly believed that the genetics around race and skin color were "accurate imitations" of aspects of the premortal spirit. With that precedent in mind, this question might boil down to -- how do we know that the cis-hetero norm that we argue so strongly for is the only correct imitation of pre-mortal spirit cr
  14. On the Church's disavowal, I have seen some claim that "disavowal" is not the same thing as "contradiction". That disavowal means something like "We no longer teach that (but it might still be true, we're not making a statement one way or the other on the possible truthfulness of those teachings)." In this line of thinking, it's the difference between "We don't teach that those racial justifications are true." and "We teach that those racial justifications are false."
  15. @CV75. I'm a bit intrigued by this idea of "prototypes".; I don't recall seeing or hearing anyone else try to explain this using that concept. Things that immediately come to mind: How is this different from "Platonic forms/ideals"? As I noted in my initial response in this thread, one direction this topic often takes me is understanding exactly what we mean when we talk about "God created ...". As I conceptualize a "prototype" (the first item created from which other copies will be made or compared), this feels like an attempt to explore what it means to create, and I find that a lot of c
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