Category Archives: Mormonism
Discussions, questions, opinions, and facts about Mormonism
I highly recommend reading An Imperfect Book, by Earl Wunderli, to anyone interested in focusing in on what the text of the Book of Mormon says about its own origins.
Wunderli uses the text of the Book of Mormon itself as his evidence to explore its origins by looking at character/place names, word-use distribution, idioms, prophesies, subject matter, concepts, etc. He also does a great job at surveying the extensive history of scholarship on the Book of Mormon’s authorship, geography, translation, and historicity, comparing it to what the BoM text actually says; letting the evidence speak for itself in relation to both apologists and critics alike, with little need for additional commentary.
While this book covers a lot of the typical questions regarding the Book of Mormon, it is by no means comprehensive. Wunderli notes that in making this book, his editor asked him to cut his content in half. This has allowed for a very concise book that focuses on the essentials and engages a wider reading audience without belabouring his points. Personally, I would have welcomed another hundred pages or so —because of my intense interest in the subject matter— but alas, I will have to track down and read his previous essays for a more detailed analysis.
His writing style and approach is very easy to read, academic, and neutral, in that his tone shouldn’t offend or discourage anyone with an open mind to the evidence. If you are a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who is willing to take your study of the Book of Mormon to a deeper level, you too will come to understand what makes it An Imperfect Book.
This blog post purports to be written by Grant Palmer, and discloses some rather damning insight into the current General Authorities and their beliefs toward the truthfulness of Mormonism and the historicity of the Book of Mormon.
While this blog post does align with statements made by Grant Palmer at the 2012 ExMormon Foundation Conference, which I attended, I’d be grateful if someone could help to authenticate this post and it’s claims!
The following very interesting memorandum was received on 5th April 2013 from Grant H. Palmer, and is shared here with his permission.
Grant is a renowned LDS historian, and is author of “An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins”, which is referred to in the following memorandum. Further details of that book may be found here:
Three Meetings with a LDS General Authority, 2012- 2013
Grant H. Palmer
In mid-October 2012, a returned LDS Mission President contacted me to arrange a meeting. Several days later, he called again and said that a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy also wished to attend. He said the General Authority would attend on condition that I not name him or repeat any stories that would identify him. He explained that neither of them, including the GA’s wife, believed the founding claims of the restoration were true. He clarified that they…
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Though I originally read this a week ago, I find myself amazed at how well-writen this open letter to the LDS Church’s presidency is. Because of this, I’ve decided to reblog this on my own site. I hope you enjoy.
An Open Letter to Europe Area Presidency by Chris Ralph.
In two parts:
Initial Open Letter (below) sent 28th August 2012
Second (Follow-up) Open Letter sent 5th October 2012 ( http://stevebloor.wordpress.com/2012/10/04/a-second-open-letter-to-the-europe-area-presidency/)
Initial Open Letter
Posted on August 28, 2012
(Please Re-Post, Tweet, Share & Re-Blog to help us reach as many General Authorities, Priesthood Leaders & members as possible.)
The following letter was sent by the Europe Area Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to its Stake Presidents and Bishops, and various other leaders in April 2012. It was sent in response to the increase in levels of disaffection of members who were encountering the problematic history of the church through the medium of the internet. The letter was soon afterwards leaked to rank and file members and ex-members, and became a public document. It is here reproduced, together with my response in the form…
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Last week, a blogger by the name of Josh Weed, posted a personal story that quickly went viral. Why? Because Josh Weed came out as a gay Mormon man who is happily married to a woman. I’ve decided to write a response to Weed’s story, not so much because of what he said, but mainly for what was not said: his omissions and the implications of his story on the wider LDS and LGBT communities.
You can read his story on his blog, The Weed, here: Club Unicorn: In which I come out of the closet on our ten year anniversary.
The 2011 Brodie Award nominations are in, and I’m in two categories! If you have enjoyed reading my blog, you can vote for me in the following two categories:
Best New Blog: Progressive ExMormon
Most Poignant Personal Story: “Life After Death”
The third annual Brodie Awards are to highlight excellent work from all over the LDS-interest internet (both critical and apologetic views). The awards are named after Fawn M. Brodie, who authored one of the first comprehensive (and critical) biography on Joseph Smith entitled, “No Man Knows My History”.
Unfortunately, I didn’t win the Brodie Award in either category, but would like to congratulate all those who won. You can click here to see the list of the winners.
An Insider’s View of Mormon Origins, by Grant H. Palmer, is a solid overview of the documented facts surrounding Joseph Smith Jr., the Book of Mormon, and the beginnings of the Mormon religion. With Palmer being a practicing member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a three-time director of the LDS Institutes of Religion, a former LDS seminary teacher, and a member of the Mormon History Association, I was fully expecting his book to be an apologetic view of Mormon origins, which I’m pleased to say was not the case. Palmer lays out a very well researched and referenced exposé of the foundational aspects of Mormonism that would make any ‘anti-Mormon’ proud.
Tell It All is the heartbreaking autobiography of Fanny Stenhouse. Her story begins with her as a young woman returning home to England, after spending some time in France, to discover that her family had converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. While investigating her family’s new-found faith, she became the object of one of the Elders’ affections. They were soon married and subsequently ‘counseled’ to serve a mission for the Church while in impoverished conditions. It was only after years of whispered rumours (and public denials by apostles) of polygamy being practiced among their American counterparts, that Joseph Smith’s polygamic ‘revelation’ was finally disclosed in England. Her adventures only truly began when she and her husband were later ‘counseled’ to emigrate to the ‘promised land’ of Utah, where she learned, first-hand, the detrimental effects of Brigham Young’s institutionalized polygamy.
A few weeks ago, while I was reading Jim Whitefield’s The Mormon Delusion Vol 1, I double-checked a claim that the author had made regarding the Church’s official website. On pages 132-3 of TMDv1 (2011 PDF edition), Whitefield had noted that, in 2006, the Church’s biographical sketch of Zina D. H. Young grossly misrepresented history and established facts. After Whitefield had pointed out the ‘error’, the Church deleted the offending sentence – which Whitefield notes in the updated edition (I read the latest 3rd edition).
I wanted to check for myself what the current wording of the biographical sketch was, so I did a quick google search of Zina Young site:LDS.org. Sure enough, I quickly found the revised bio, just as Whitefield said. However, in the search results, I also found a link to a Relief Society Presidents poster which still contained the original biographical sketch! There I had it, proof that the LDS Church had not only rewritten history to mislead people, but that they had deleted the misrepresentation once it was discovered!
Below is Jim Whitefield’s official September 2011 update containing my contribution. Click here for the original source.
I recently came across a blog post called “The Family“, by The Blissful Heretic. I thought it was really well written, and successfully illustrates the contradiction that exists with the LDS Church’s marketing strategy of promoting themselves as a ‘family church’, while actively preaching against any and all family types that don’t fit it’s patriarchal, heterosexual, and procreational ideal.
I highly recommend my readers to follow the link below to read her great post. Here’s a sample:
In recent years, the church has been trying to enhance its image as a “family” church. It has always been adamantly opposed to homosexuality and gay marriage, and it has received a lot of press for this since its involvement in Prop 8. Nary a conference goes by without a veiled reference to “the family” being under attack. The current threat is the gay rights movement, but historically the church has also identified feminism and interracial marriage as threats to the family. READ MORE…