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Boa Apologists=flat Earthers?


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I must confess that I'm not as informed as I should be about these issues, but I know that the Book of Abraham has been quite the hot topic lately. A comparison I've seen quite a bit lately is that people who are apologists for the book of Abraham are like flat earth conspiracy theorists, and are basically crackpots who shouldn't be trusted. The two that seem to be attacked the most are Gee and Muhlestein. I was curious why people would think this is or isn't the case, and explain to a layman like me why they feel these characterizations are accurate or not. I'm also asking this to get a better understanding of some of the main points of contention. Thanks for any responses.

You can start another thread without name calling in the title.

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I think this is a fair comparison.  It’s like they are adults still believing in Santa Claus.  The denial is substantial.

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5 minutes ago, 2BizE said:

I think this is a fair comparison.

I don't.   There is plenty of room for reasoned and principled disagreement about the Book of Abraham.

5 minutes ago, 2BizE said:

It’s like they are adults still believing in Santa Claus.  The denial is substantial.

Uh huh.

Thanks,

-Smac

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Book of Abraham mud has been slung for over a century... With those anti the church running out of material as many early criticisms evaporate a Custer like last stand is being made by the disaffected in technical territory largely unfamiliar to the lay person. Easier to bamboozle people and undermine faith that way in this age of "unquestionable and often ungraspable science"(a least from many a lay persons perspective).

The critics are now so vehemently clinging too and defending this last patch, that as the earth below their feet erodes, they feel it necessary to overstate their assertions and resort to personal attacks and other measures to disparage anybody that strays from their carefully constructed but ultimately unsteady narrative.

It is a highly technical secular attack by the spiritually bankrupt.

Edited by gav
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21 minutes ago, 2BizE said:

I think this is a fair comparison.  It’s like they are adults still believing in Santa Claus.  The denial is substantial.

If you could elaborate on some specific reasons that would be helpful.

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7 minutes ago, gav said:

Book of Abraham mud has been slung for over a century... With those anti the church running out of material as many early criticisms evaporate a Custer like last stand is being made by the disaffected in technical territory largely unfamiliar to the lay person. Easier to bamboozle people and undermine faith that way in this age of "unquestionable and often ungraspable science"(a least from many a lay persons perspective).

The critics are now so vehemently clinging too and defending this last patch, that as the earth below their feet erodes, they feel it necessary to overstate their assertions and resort to personal attacks and other measures to disparage anybody that strays from their carefully constructed but ultimately unsteady narrative.

Could you give a bit more information about what you feel has changed?

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7 minutes ago, boblloyd91 said:

Could you give a bit more information about what you feel has changed?

allow me to quote you

Quote

On 7/31/2020 at 4:07 PM, boblloyd91 said:

 

Quote

https://religionnews.com/2017/07/11/rip-anti-mormon-literature/

I'm surprised no one has mentioned it already. To repeat what others are saying, the challenges not just to the church but faith in general are larger and different. Being secular instead of sectarian. Also, on a more positive note I also agree that our defenses and apologetic responses are getting more advanced and compelling each year for those that take the time to read them. 

Finally, although the evidence overall is mixed and in dispute, in some quarters evangelical fundamentalists are losing ground, the biggest example being the consistent declines in the membership of the SBC. 

Simply put: as the overall response increases in sophistication so does the attack. With less and less ground to work with the battle is more bitter 

Edited by gav
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33 minutes ago, gav said:

allow me to quote you

 

Simply put: as the overall response increases in sophistication so does the attack. With less and less ground to work with the battle is more bitter 

I do remember that now, thanks for bringing that to my attention. I think I was referring more to the Book of Mormon as I'm more familiar with the arguments for and against it, however I do feel a bit more ignorant about the Book of Abraham than I'd like to be 

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3 hours ago, boblloyd91 said:

I must confess that I'm not as informed as I should be about these issues, but I know that the Book of Abraham has been quite the hot topic lately. A comparison I've seen quite a bit lately is that people who are apologists for the book of Abraham are like flat earth conspiracy theorists, and are basically crackpots who shouldn't be trusted. The two that seem to be attacked the most are Gee and Muhlestein. I was curious why people would think this is or isn't the case, and explain to a layman like me why they feel these characterizations are accurate or not. I'm also asking this to get a better understanding of some of the main points of contention. Thanks for any responses.

Sorry, I am one of those who still believes in the Pearl of Great Price in total; in the same way that I believe in the other parts of the Standard Works. I find the critics to be those incapable, or having chosen, to not have faith. It is a position I understand and recognize. The supposed "Modern Man" is much too refined to have faith unless it is the work of his own hands or the thoughts of his own mind. 

I try to read out of the best books. As a result I have copies of most of the sacred works known in the world. Some of them are particularly uplifting and worthwhile. Some not so much. I don't think I have ever once started my reading by trying to determine if it was "true". I seek truth in them and when I find it I am gratified for having made the search. 

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24 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

I try to read out of the best books. As a result I have copies of most of the sacred works known in the world. Some of them are particularly uplifting and worthwhile. Some not so much. I don't think I have ever once started my reading by trying to determine if it was "true". I seek truth in them and when I find it I am gratified for having made the search. 

Love. Ditto.

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14 hours ago, gav said:

.....................................

It is a highly technical secular attack by the spiritually bankrupt.

It's not so much that they are spiritually bankrupt, because they never had the Spirit to begin with, as that they actually have no grasp whatsoever on the technical matters of Egyptology or ancient Near Eastern studies.  Their attack is a pretend attack on a subject about which they know nothing.  What is so awful for them is that they do not even have the capacity for secular reasoning or knowledge.

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48 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

It's not so much that they are spiritually bankrupt, because they never had the Spirit to begin with, as that they actually have no grasp whatsoever on the technical matters of Egyptology or ancient Near Eastern studies.  Their attack is a pretend attack on a subject about which they know nothing.  What is so awful for them is that they do not even have the capacity for secular reasoning or knowledge.

I think it is worth repeating.

One does not have to agree with apologetic Egyptological theories (or even Near Eastern) regarding the BoA to hold it as scripture. Nor are those who disagree with the same theories anti-Mormon simply because of the disagreement.

We need to stop equating equating agreement with the  apologetic theories of a few with being in tune with the spirit or as a test of faith. This does far more damage to the church than any critical view of those theories.

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2 hours ago, CA Steve said:

I think it is worth repeating.

One does not have to agree with apologetic Egyptological theories (or even Near Eastern) regarding the BoA to hold it as scripture. Nor are those who disagree with the same theories anti-Mormon simply because of the disagreement.

We need to stop equating equating agreement with the  apologetic theories of a few with being in tune with the spirit or as a test of faith. This does far more damage to the church than any critical view of those theories.

It is especially worth repeating that confusing faith with reason is a common category mistake.  They are two very separate modes of thought.  Each has a very different basis.  Religious faith will survive just fine, regardless of such confusion.

Most people are incapable of carrying on a professional historical debate about their personal religion, regardless of which denomination or faith they adhere to.  They may, of course, have a basic understanding of the tenets of their faith, and can often repeat them in formulaic fashion, but a deep, scholastic understanding is well beyond their grasp.  That doesn't seem to put a dent in the apologetic and polemic temptations of some.

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22 hours ago, boblloyd91 said:

I must confess that I'm not as informed as I should be about these issues, but I know that the Book of Abraham has been quite the hot topic lately. A comparison I've seen quite a bit lately is that people who are apologists for the book of Abraham are like flat earth conspiracy theorists, and are basically crackpots who shouldn't be trusted. The two that seem to be attacked the most are Gee and Muhlestein. I was curious why people would think this is or isn't the case, and explain to a layman like me why they feel these characterizations are accurate or not. I'm also asking this to get a better understanding of some of the main points of contention. Thanks for any responses.

Generally I avoid BOA issues for the simple fact that I am don't know enough regarding this dead language to know a good argument from a bad one.  I suspect if some ancient Egyptians traveled through time and could read many of the more academic stuff regarding their society, language, ect they would find lots of comedy in it.  Who knows if they had a lot of street language and slang in Egyptian like we do today in English and other languages.  Plus if their definitions of words changed over time like ours does today, who knows how accurate we are.   Overall if Joseph Smith was a fraud, it should be fairly easy to show in the easy stuff.  The simple stuff should be sufficient.  If one needs a phD in Egyptian to possibly show it, then the opposition is grasping at straws.   

Edited by carbon dioxide
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On 8/14/2020 at 7:02 PM, smac97 said:

I don't.   There is plenty of room for reasoned and principled disagreement about the Book of Abraham.

Uh huh.

Thanks,

-Smac

Don’t reply to trolls, please. 

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On 8/14/2020 at 6:56 PM, 2BizE said:

I think this is a fair comparison.  It’s like they are adults still believing in Santa Claus.  The denial is substantial.

Very simplistic way to see the world.

Santa IS "real" as representing the peace and love which people- including adults- feel at Christmas time. This is called "personification". These are symbols not meant to be anything more.

Those who don't see that are simply limited in their vision.

And then there are those who try to figure out the physics of how he gets down the chimneys and around the world in one evening, and conclude that he cannot exist.

It's like, as someone said, walking around a campus,

"Well I see a lot of buildings but where is the University?"

They need to elevate their level of vision a little.

 

 

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To me, I really don't care how/where Joseph got the Book of Abraham... I consider it inspired.  Scripture... I don't pay any real attention to the facsimilies because of the possibility/probability of error, as has been argued/debated... To me, I particularly like Chapter 4 and the verses describing the Creation... particularly verse 18... "And the Gods watched those things which they had ordered until they obeyed."   In each phase, the Gods ordered certain things, then they sat back, waited, and watched until they were obeyed... and could see that it was good.  The question I have is how long did these things take... hundreds? thousands? millions? of years? while each thing went through the process of developing until the Gods were satisfied that they had been obeyed and pronounced that something was good?  I believe this allows for evolution and natural selection (NOT Darwinism).  But a natural progression and development until they reached the point of being pronounced complete and "good".   

GG

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On 8/15/2020 at 6:14 PM, carbon dioxide said:

Generally I avoid BOA issues for the simple fact that I am don't know enough regarding this dead language to know a good argument from a bad one.  I suspect if some ancient Egyptians traveled through time and could read many of the more academic stuff regarding their society, language, ect they would find lots of comedy in it.  Who knows if they had a lot of street language and slang in Egyptian like we do today in English and other languages.  Plus if their definitions of words changed over time like ours does today, who knows how accurate we are.   Overall if Joseph Smith was a fraud, it should be fairly easy to show in the easy stuff.  The simple stuff should be sufficient.  If one needs a phD in Egyptian to possibly show it, then the opposition is grasping at straws.   

Dr. Ritner has shown many, many instances of the easy stuff. But nobody cares to take a look. The youtube of the interview with RFM and Dehlin, shows where. I haven't watched, but listened, and it sounds like there's plenty. And what seems to not get discussed enough, is that the Gospel Topic Essay concerning the BoA, even says it's more a revealed vs. translation of the papyri, but everyone seems stuck on proving it's literal. I don't get it. None of this matters if Joseph was inspired through the papyrus. We can scrap all of these posts and go on with our lives, IMO. But some are stuck in the past, I guess. Now needing to show that Joseph used the word "translation" differently than the modern version. But  in actuality, Joseph did claim to translate a language. So did use it in the modern sense. 

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On 8/14/2020 at 6:42 PM, boblloyd91 said:

I must confess that I'm not as informed as I should be about these issues, but I know that the Book of Abraham has been quite the hot topic lately. A comparison I've seen quite a bit lately is that people who are apologists for the book of Abraham are like flat earth conspiracy theorists, and are basically crackpots who shouldn't be trusted. The two that seem to be attacked the most are Gee and Muhlestein. I was curious why people would think this is or isn't the case, and explain to a layman like me why they feel these characterizations are accurate or not. I'm also asking this to get a better understanding of some of the main points of contention. Thanks for any responses.

It's just a bit of exaggeration, the type found commonly found when there is a debate on an issue.  Like how when Democrats debate against Republicans.  Someone says something reasonable and then someone on the other side of the debate doesn't like that because that person doesn't want the other side to be perceived as having reasonable ideas so that person will exaggerate and make false claims against the other side in hopes that it will help to dissuade attraction to that other side and maybe make some points for their side instead.  Pretty much like how you did in your post by merely bringing up the idea that any apologist for the book of Abraham must be thought of as being "like flat earth conspiracy theorists, and are basically crackpots who shouldn't be trusted."  It's just part of what happens when people debate issues together when there is more than one side of an argument.

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I am curious as to your response to the fact that much of fac 2 can be found in other hypocephalus and different interpretation to that of Smith.Especially figures 5 6 & 7.

 

 

unnamed.jpg

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4 minutes ago, aussieguy55 said:

I am curious as to your response to the fact that much of fac 2 can be found in other hypocephalus and different interpretation to that of Smith.Especially figures 5 6 & 7.

 

 

unnamed.jpg

This bit http://www.boap.org/LDS/Hugh-Nibley/TrFac.html from Hugh Nibley is pretty good but I recommend all of his books dealing with this issue.

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 Tamas Mekis  writes "The next figure is Nehebkau who offers the wedjat-eye to the sitting deity before him"   Nehabkau is identified with the Atum -serpent "   Some Reflections on the funerary equipment of Paiuhor

 

 

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