Jump to content

Simon Southerton's New Book


Recommended Posts

6 minutes ago, Rajah Manchou said:

Apologies, I'm not familiar with the "Sherem as Other" discussion. 

Is the argument that Sherem was a Mayan? 

Is whose argument that "Sherem is a Mayan"?  I'm not trying to guess Sherem's ethnicity.  I'm simply reading what the text says.  Verse 1 of Jacob 7 says Sherem "came among" the people of Nephi.  Why would he have to "come among" them if he were already among them?  And, as I've already pointed out, why make a point that Sherem "was learned" in the language of the people if it were his native tongue (v. 4)?

  • Like 1
Link to post
28 minutes ago, Kenngo1969 said:

Is whose argument that "Sherem is a Mayan"?  I'm not trying to guess Sherem's ethnicity.  I'm simply reading what the text says.  Verse 1 of Jacob 7 says Sherem "came among" the people of Nephi.  Why would he have to "come among" them if he were already among them?  And, as I've already pointed out, why make a point that Sherem "was learned" in the language of the people if it were his native tongue (v. 4)?

I'm asking because I've only heard the discussions about Sherem being a Mulekite trader or Jaredite survivor. But since this thread is about other (non-Book of Mormon) people in the land, I'm assuming we're discussing the possibility that he was an aboriginal American, Mayan or Hopewell or something else? 

Just trying to understand why we're discussing Sherem in a thread about Simon Southerton's new book.

Link to post
On 1/16/2020 at 8:29 AM, smac97 said:

Emphases added, yes?

Yes. I'm sorry. I will do better next time. Don't tell Scott.

On 1/16/2020 at 8:29 AM, smac97 said:

Elder McConkie acknowledged the Native Americans as being "a people of mixed blood and origin." Doesn't that rather undermine your . . . well, what point are you making, anyway?

No undermining here because anything less than 100% is mixed and BRM clarifies that

Quote

for the great majority of the descendants of the original inhabitants of the Western Hemisphere, the dominant blood lineage is that of Israel.

Yet somehow you seem to believe that

On 1/16/2020 at 8:29 AM, smac97 said:

It seems fairly ambiguous.

Nah.

 

Edited by Thinking
  • Like 1
Link to post
9 hours ago, Kenngo1969 said:

Stemelbow,

I draw exactly the opposite conclusion you do from that verse. If Sherem came from among the Nephites rather than being an outsider to them, why bother mentioning his proficiency with their language at all? Wouldn’t such proficiency simply be a given? It’s true that one needs to do a certain amount of learning to acquire one’s native language, but trust me: I know from personal experience that the effort required to acquire one’s native language pales in comparison to the amount of learning one must do even to become somewhat proficient in a second language, much less to acquire a “perfect knowledge” of that language, as Sherem did.

It is quite a stetch to think this hints and Sherem being from outside.  It is contrasting one who is learned with one who is not.  He is learned, that makes him have a perfect knowledge of the language.  It's a precarious position to think this coupled with the after many years there came a man among them and say he represents significant mixing of people already in the Americas and people who came with Lehi and co.  I hear you point and find it wanting and lacking reason.  

9 hours ago, Kenngo1969 said:

Sherem says he believes their scriptures, but his continuing dialogue with Jacob seems to put the lie to that assertion:

 

The continuing dialog says he does not understand them not that he does not believe them.  Who had the means to read the scriptures at this point?  Everyone?  Everyone learned?  Literacy was hardly a concern in those days, as most couldn't read.  Did Sherem read them?  I suppose we can assume Jacob could.  It'd be foolish to think an outsider from a different civilization, settlement or peoples came in, learned the language perfectly and was able to read their scriptures (likely in a different language) and not have known Jacob, at some point, in some way.  Too few readers to be able to not know each other, I'd imagine.  

The biggest problem is the story doesn't really work whether Sherem was from the Nephite group or was one who joined them, and had a completely different people.  And if that's the best the defenders can do to say there were others, I think they're really stretching and filling their assumptions with wishful thinking.  

Link to post
18 hours ago, Fair Dinkum said:

I agree.  There is nothing in the story of Sherem that would suggest he is anything but an insider, member of the Nephite/Lamanite people. That he was familiar with Christ is evidence that he was an insider.  The use of Anti Christs are a familiar story theme in Smiths BoM .  Having an antagonist is central to many of his stories.

 

Yep.  Using the Sherem story to attempt to force upon the text the presence of others is nothing but contrived guesswork it seems to me.  There's noting legitimate is saying sure there were others because Sherem came among the Nephites.  That's clearly forcing something on the text that is not there.  

Link to post

 

21 hours ago, Kenngo1969 said:

And, as I've already pointed out, why make a point that Sherem "was learned" in the language of the people if it were his native tongue (v. 4)?

I am an English-speaking person but I  don’t excel enough in the language that I can flatter many people with the use of words.  I could never be a motivational speaker, political activist, evangelical preacher, or a great debater.

 

 

 

Edited by Rivers
  • Like 3
Link to post
13 hours ago, Rivers said:

 

I am an English-speaking person but I  don’t excel enough in the language that I can flatter many people with the use of words.  I could never be a motivational speaker, political activist, evangelical preacher, or a great debater.

 

 

 

If that be the explanation, it seems to me the text might more properly have been that he was  <skilled> in the language of the people. 
 

If it were a matter of him being “learned” in his native language, it would sound like he had undertaken an academic study of the language. I’m not sure that, among the Nephites in ca. 500 BC they would have had anything like a counterpart to an advanced college degree in English. 
 

No, to me it sounds like he, not being a native speaker, had acquired a proficiency in the Nephite language, as I in my young adulthood learned to speak, read and write in Swedish. 

Edited by Scott Lloyd
  • Like 2
Link to post
15 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

If that be the explanation, it seems to me the text might more properly have been that he was not <skilled> in the language of the people. 
 

If it were a matter of him not being “learned” in his native language, it would sound like he had not undertaken an academic study of the language. I’m not sure that, among the Nephites in ca. 500 BC they would have had anything like a counterpart to an advanced college degree in English. 
 

No, to me it sounds like he, not being a native speaker, had acquired a proficiency in the Nephite language, as I in my young adulthood learned to speak, read and write in Swedish. 

How long did it take you to gain a perfect command of swedish?  

Link to post
2 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

How long did it take you to gain a perfect command of swedish?  

The question is irrelevant to my point, which is that becoming “learned” in a language is not synonymous with becoming skilled in it. At least not in our common vernacular. 
 

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
7 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

The question is irrelevant to my point, which is that becoming “learned” in a language is not synonymous with becoming skilled in it. At least not in our common vernacular. 
 

 

What about a perfect knowledge of a language?  Would you say that wouldn't mean skilled in it?  

Link to post
16 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

The question is irrelevant to my point, which is that becoming “learned” in a language is not synonymous with becoming skilled in it. At least not in our common vernacular. 
 

 

But was it in 1820?

Quote

Learnt

LEARNT, lernt. participle passive Obtained as knowledge or information.

LEARNED, adjective lern'ed.

1. Versed in literature and science; as a learned man.

2. Skillful; well acquainted with arts; knowing; within; as learned in martial arts.

3. Containing learning; as a learned treatise or publication.

4. Versed in scholastic, as distinct from other knowledge.

Men of much reading are greatly learned, but may be little knowing.

The learned, learned men; men of erudition; literati

http://webstersdictionary1828.com/Dictionary/Learnt

  • Like 1
Link to post
16 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

What about a perfect knowledge of a language?  Would you say that wouldn't mean skilled in it?  

I would be apt to call that “learned.” “Skilled,” to me, implies facility with the language, not academic learning in it (assuming there was such a thing in Nephite society at that time). 
 

Think of it as academic knowledge vs practical application. You can have one without the other. 

Edited by Scott Lloyd
  • Like 2
Link to post
On 1/15/2020 at 4:38 PM, Fair Dinkum said:

Accepting the book as a work of fiction doesn't hurt my brain as much as trying to force the other theories into believably. And I'm comfortable with the book being a work of fiction.

Maybe "parable" is a better word.

There is no way of knowing its most of the characters in The Bible actually lived or not and that we believe and their stories and take lessons from them

  • Like 1
Link to post
On 1/17/2020 at 9:20 PM, mfbukowski said:

Maybe "parable" is a better word.

There is no way of knowing its most of the characters in The Bible actually lived or not and that we believe and their stories and take lessons from them

Except the Book of Mormon is neither fiction nor parable — though the actual events it relates can teach us lessons as a parable can. 

Link to post
2 hours ago, Scott Lloyd said:

Except the Book of Mormon is neither fiction nor parable — though the actual events it relates can teach us lessons as a parable can. 

Fine.  Whatever you prefer.  I choose to build my house on a rock, not sand

I see no relevant pragmatic difference.

The parable and teachings are what changes lives, not what might or might not have happened thousands of years ago.

The lessons stand on their own, forever, the history could in principle be overturned by one potshard.

Sherem a Mayan? (Or not...)

Oh no! The heavens just fell!

Edited by mfbukowski
Link to post
7 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

Fine.  Whatever you prefer.  I choose to build my house on a rock, not sand

I see no relevant pragmatic difference.

The parable and teachings are what changes lives, not what might or might not have happened thousands of years ago.

The lessons stand on their own, forever, the history could in principle be overturned by one potshard.

If there’s any undermining to be done, it will be through the misguided notion that the Book of Mormon is “inspired fiction” or “a pious fraud,” a thing that, carried to its logical conclusion, stands to upend the entire Restoration. 
 

But that won’t happen, because the Brethren have not and will not allow such false doctrine to gain an authoritative foothold. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
8 hours ago, Scott Lloyd said:

If there’s any undermining to be done, it will be through the misguided notion that the Book of Mormon is “inspired fiction” or “a pious fraud,” a thing that, carried to its logical conclusion, stands to upend the entire Restoration. 
 

But that won’t happen, because the Brethren have not and will not allow such false doctrine to gain an authoritative foothold. 

I believe it is historical, it just doesn't have to be imo, to be scripture 

No parables that Christ taught were historical and yet we treasure their messages and they form the backbone of his teachings 

Link to post
3 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

I believe it is historical, it just doesn't have to be imo, to be scripture 

No parables that Christ taught were historical and yet we treasure their messages and they form the backbone of his teachings 

I can tolerate those who don’t view it as historical so long as they don’t promulgate their incorrect views, especially in a Church setting. But I worry for them, as their sentiment must ultimately be seen as untenable if one accepts the reality of the Restoration. 

Link to post
56 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

I can tolerate those who don’t view it as historical so long as they don’t promulgate their incorrect views, especially in a Church setting. But I worry for them, as their sentiment must ultimately be seen as untenable if one accepts the reality of the Restoration. 

John Dewey's book "Reconstruction in Philosophy" puts forth the idea that philosophy must be restored to it's original purpose, the love of wisdom, and remarkably follows along similar lines to the ideas of restoration of beliefs and yet has nothing to do with history directly.

The notion of restoration itself simply points to error and how to fix it.

I believe in Book of Mormon history but I don't see it tied to any of these Concepts. To me there are two separate variables.

I can see no logically necessary connection.

Link to post
1 hour ago, smac97 said:

 

The "inspired fiction" approach to The Book of Mormon requires a rejection of The Book of Mormon for what it claims to be. To accept it on those grounds would be like saying "Yes, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and my Lord and Savior, even though I reject the idea that he ever actually existed." A fictional Christ does not work, and neither does a fictional Book of Mormon.

The Book of Mormon is dependent on a non-fictional Christ; if Christ is fictional, so are the BoM stories of his second appearance in the New World.  But Christ's mortal existence is not much questioned, right? 

A better analogy might be, "[like saying] Yes, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and my Lord and Savior, even though I reject the idea that he ever actually rose from the dead; that's just inspired fiction."

Link to post
3 hours ago, smac97 said:

I respect that position, but I think it is substantively incorrect.  

In my view, rejecting the BoM's historicity necessarily requires rejecting the BoM's status as scripture. I don't think that a coherent good faith argument can be made otherwise. In fact, I think the "Inspired Fiction" concept sets a faith-imperiling precedent.  If we reject The Book of Mormon as not having historicity, we reject it as scripture, because The Book of Mormon presents itself as historical, not as a fable.  If we reject The Book of Mormon for what it claims for itself, then we must also reject Joseph Smith, who likewise declared it to be an actual historical document recounting the lives of actual historical people.  

The "Inspired Fiction" folks are rejecting the words of God and the messengers of God, and they are encouraging others to do likewise.  Consider the following remarks by Elder Oaks (emphasis added):

I have yet to see the Inspired Fiction folks address this issue, which I believe is fatal to their proposal.  If The Book of Mormon can be rejected for what it claims to be, and instead construed as fiction, then so can Jesus Christ.

 

A popular refrain from the "Inspired Fiction" folks is that The Book of Mormon has value even if it is entirely fictional, just like the parables of Jesus need not be literally historical in order to have value.  However, I disagree with this comparison.   Parables have value irrespective of their historicity, I agree with that. However, Jesus Christ being the Son of God and Savior of the world only has value because of the historicity tied up with that declaration. Historicity matters when we consider various scriptural passages, such as this one: "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." Absent historicity, this passage has no salvific meaning or value. Without historicity, Jesus would be just another admirable fictional character, like Atticus Finch, or Samwise Gamgee, or Captain America. Jesus would be about as valuable to me as an imaginary life preserver would be to a drowning man.

In his article "Joseph Smith and the Historicity of the Book of Mormon" (published in the above volume), Kent P. Jackson asks, "what credibility could any of these sources have if the book is not historical?"  He goes on (emphasis added):

I think the Inspired Fiction folks have not really thought through the ramifications of their proposal.   The "fake but accurate," "I can reject what The Book of Mormon claims to be and what Joseph Smith represented it to be, but still accept it as scripture" type of reasoning is a fundamentally flawed line of reasoning. Elder Oaks aptly described it as "not only reject(ing) the concepts of faith and revelation that The Book of Mormon explains and advocates, but it is also not even good scholarship."

This is why I find advocacy of this approach problematic. Such advocates are steering others up a spiritual blind alley; a path, I think, which sooner or later will culminate in a crisis of faith and/or a rejection of The Book of Mormon. After all, one who rejects its historicity has already rejected a substantive, even vital, part of the book. Rejecting the rest of it would seem to be just a matter of time.  I think an affirmative denial of the book's historicity will, sooner or later, become fatal to a testimony of the book.

Ambivalence about historicity is perhaps possible, but affirmative denial is, I think, not compatible with an enduring and efficacious testimony of The Book of Mormon.

I think those who seek salvation, but who reject the messengers who bring it, are in serious error.  Nevertheless, as deeply flawed as their position is, I welcome such persons who buy into the "inspired fiction" meme in fellowship in the Church.  We are all of us working to improve our understanding of God and His plans for us.  It is not for me to withdraw or withhold fellowship from those who differ from me on this issue.  I also won't speculate as to their standing in the Church generally, and will instead leave such things to those who are in authority and have proper stewardship.

The "inspired fiction" approach to The Book of Mormon requires a rejection of The Book of Mormon for what it claims to be. To accept it on those grounds would be like saying "Yes, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and my Lord and Savior, even though I reject the idea that he ever actually existed." A fictional Christ does not work, and neither does a fictional Book of Mormon.

Thanks,

-Smac

So beautifully put!

I’m going to copy and save this post as a personal resource (I’ll be sure to give you credit if I ever quote it). 

You ought to publish it in some form more durable than as a post on  a message board. 

Edited by Scott Lloyd
Link to post
5 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

So beautifully put!

I’m going to copy and save this post as a personal resource (I’ll be sure to give you credit if I ever quote it). 

You ought to publish it in some form more durable than as a piston a message board. [Emphasis added by Kenngo1969.]

Autocorrect strikes again? ;):D

  • Like 1
Link to post
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...