Episode 66: The First Anniversary Episode

150 comments on “Episode 66: The First Anniversary Episode”

  1. Swearing Elder Reply

    Congratulations on one year of podcasting! So many efforts like this fizzle out.

    I think this podcast has been wonderful. I’ve listened to every single one — even a few of them a couple times. It’s so nice to have an effort like this that takes an even-handed, objective approach to the church.

    Keep up the great work!

  2. Swearing Elder Reply

    Congratulations on one year of podcasting! So many efforts like this fizzle out.

    I think this podcast has been wonderful. I’ve listened to every single one — even a few of them a couple times. It’s so nice to have an effort like this that takes an even-handed, objective approach to the church.

    Keep up the great work!

  3. jax Reply

    Excellent. I cannot believe it has been a year. Happy Birthday, Mormon Expression.

    John, you hit on something in this podcast that resonates pretty deeply. Leaving the church is very, very difficult. You are so right about the history and its effect on you as a person. That is why I love ME. You give us a voice. It is such a basic human need, to be understood. This is where I feel understood.

    My gratitude to John and crew for their work on this project goes a long way. I’m so glad you got involved, Zilpha. Hearing another woman’s perspective is great! Thanks to each of you for lending your time and talents.

    Tom, I think what you shared explains to a lot of people the struggle many of us who find ourselves in a crisis of faith wake up immersed in. There is no better way that I can think of to help other people understand why this journey is such a personal one, and why black and white thinking just do not work. Your struggles highlight the need for understanding, patience, and compassion for people caught up in this mess… and why there is not a single right way to navigate the terrain.

    Keep up the good work. You all are making a difference. Thank you.

    jax

  4. jax Reply

    Excellent. I cannot believe it has been a year. Happy Birthday, Mormon Expression.

    John, you hit on something in this podcast that resonates pretty deeply. Leaving the church is very, very difficult. You are so right about the history and its effect on you as a person. That is why I love ME. You give us a voice. It is such a basic human need, to be understood. This is where I feel understood.

    My gratitude to John and crew for their work on this project goes a long way. I’m so glad you got involved, Zilpha. Hearing another woman’s perspective is great! Thanks to each of you for lending your time and talents.

    Tom, I think what you shared explains to a lot of people the struggle many of us who find ourselves in a crisis of faith wake up immersed in. There is no better way that I can think of to help other people understand why this journey is such a personal one, and why black and white thinking just do not work. Your struggles highlight the need for understanding, patience, and compassion for people caught up in this mess… and why there is not a single right way to navigate the terrain.

    Keep up the good work. You all are making a difference. Thank you.

    jax

  5. Eric Comstock Reply

    I’ve loved this podcast too. In fact I would not have known about it unless John Dehlin had told me about it.

    Here’s to many more ME podcasts in the future.

  6. Eric Comstock Reply

    I’ve loved this podcast too. In fact I would not have known about it unless John Dehlin had told me about it.

    Here’s to many more ME podcasts in the future.

  7. Glenn Reply

    I stumbled across the podcast back in January and just devoured each episode. They are fantastic, and I count myself very lucky to have gotten to know you and play in the sandbox with you. My favorites so far:

    1. Ep 37, Nauvoo Expositor for dummies — this was just awesome.

    2. Ep 14, Science and Disbelief — Seth and Lorin were fantastic. I’d love to hear from them again.

    3. Ep 40, Brian Dalton and Mr. Diety — turned me on to the Mr Diety episodes — hilarious

    4. Conference episodes — you made me actually want to listen and pay attention to conference talks again. Amazing.

    5. Ep 61, Lost tribes after podcast — John was laser sharp on this one. It was just a lot of fun to be involved in that.

    Of course I also loved the one-on-one’s getting to know you guys better — especially Tom and Zilpha’s — I have recomended those to several friends. The dream mine was fantastic. The Occult in America with Mitch Horowirtz. Elna Baker was great. I even liked the Fowler episodes. I guess I am just one big huge snarky mamby pamby liberal mormon fan.

    Congrats on your first year! Here’s to many more.

    • Glenn Reply

      Per my comment #2 above — Thanks for responding with Guns, Germs, Steel, and the Book of Mormon so quickly, John. Now that’s what I call service! Seth, Lorin, Jonathan, and John. I could sit and listen to you guys talk about anything. Loved it!

  8. Glenn Reply

    I stumbled across the podcast back in January and just devoured each episode. They are fantastic, and I count myself very lucky to have gotten to know you and play in the sandbox with you. My favorites so far:

    1. Ep 37, Nauvoo Expositor for dummies — this was just awesome.

    2. Ep 14, Science and Disbelief — Seth and Lorin were fantastic. I’d love to hear from them again.

    3. Ep 40, Brian Dalton and Mr. Diety — turned me on to the Mr Diety episodes — hilarious

    4. Conference episodes — you made me actually want to listen and pay attention to conference talks again. Amazing.

    5. Ep 61, Lost tribes after podcast — John was laser sharp on this one. It was just a lot of fun to be involved in that.

    Of course I also loved the one-on-one’s getting to know you guys better — especially Tom and Zilpha’s — I have recomended those to several friends. The dream mine was fantastic. The Occult in America with Mitch Horowirtz. Elna Baker was great. I even liked the Fowler episodes. I guess I am just one big huge snarky mamby pamby liberal mormon fan.

    Congrats on your first year! Here’s to many more.

    • Glenn Reply

      Per my comment #2 above — Thanks for responding with Guns, Germs, Steel, and the Book of Mormon so quickly, John. Now that’s what I call service! Seth, Lorin, Jonathan, and John. I could sit and listen to you guys talk about anything. Loved it!

  9. Stephen Erastus Knudsen III Reply

    Heretics. All of you. I think it is worth pointing out that your one year anniversary is episode 66 — in June, another 6. It must mean something…

    • Mister IT Reply

      To make that determination we have to look to the doctrine of names . . .

      Mike, can you help us out here?

      😉

  10. Stephen Erastus Knudsen III Reply

    Heretics. All of you. I think it is worth pointing out that your one year anniversary is episode 66 — in June, another 6. It must mean something…

    • Mister IT Reply

      To make that determination we have to look to the doctrine of names . . .

      Mike, can you help us out here?

      😉

  11. kaylanamars Reply

    Great podcast! So many great insights into everyone.

    I hope for a day when all levels of belief and unbelief within Mormonism will be accepted. So grateful for all of your voices! Keep up the good work!

  12. kaylanamars Reply

    Great podcast! So many great insights into everyone.

    I hope for a day when all levels of belief and unbelief within Mormonism will be accepted. So grateful for all of your voices! Keep up the good work!

  13. scott2 Reply

    whether our glasses are full with champagne or ginger ale, i think everyone can toast you for the good work you’ve done…

    to another year!

  14. scott2 Reply

    whether our glasses are full with champagne or ginger ale, i think everyone can toast you for the good work you’ve done…

    to another year!

  15. Oz Reply

    Happy Anniversary Brethren!!! I am not one who posts or even really looks at many of the blogs, other than the casual peek here and there. I feel lucky to have found you guys. To have voices that openly discuss these issues within our culture, pro and con, is very comforting for someone like me who has struggled or is coming to grips with the issues you guys have discussed.

    I have a ton of favorites, but the individual, one on ones with each of you guys are really great. There are pieces of each of you that I found that I could relate to. Thank you guys for opening yourselves up to us.

    Tom/Nyal, I know you mentioned the possibility of scaling back your participation on the podcast, I really hope not. Each of you guys bring a different perspective that I have enjoyed. If anything, I wish George, Nyal, and Jim were on more consistently. Who doesn’t enjoy the “3am” Nyal…even if it consists of low blows towards John Dehlin. 🙂

    Please keep up the good work and cheers to a great 2nd year!!!!

  16. Oz Reply

    Happy Anniversary Brethren!!! I am not one who posts or even really looks at many of the blogs, other than the casual peek here and there. I feel lucky to have found you guys. To have voices that openly discuss these issues within our culture, pro and con, is very comforting for someone like me who has struggled or is coming to grips with the issues you guys have discussed.

    I have a ton of favorites, but the individual, one on ones with each of you guys are really great. There are pieces of each of you that I found that I could relate to. Thank you guys for opening yourselves up to us.

    Tom/Nyal, I know you mentioned the possibility of scaling back your participation on the podcast, I really hope not. Each of you guys bring a different perspective that I have enjoyed. If anything, I wish George, Nyal, and Jim were on more consistently. Who doesn’t enjoy the “3am” Nyal…even if it consists of low blows towards John Dehlin. 🙂

    Please keep up the good work and cheers to a great 2nd year!!!!

  17. brandt Reply

    Happy Anniversary! 66 episodes, to crank one out about every week, is quite the accomplishment! MAZEL TOV!

    While I’m probably one of the outliers (a TBM ), I guess I feel I can objectively separate my belief in Mormonism from my objective fascination of Mormonism as a culture. That being said, having all the viewpoints that you do (even Mike) gives one a broad view for not only the experiences wrapped up in Mormonism. From Nyal’s ex-Mormon perspective, to Mike’s “right of center” perspective, to Tom’s NOM/Open perspective, to John’s nonpracticing perspective (sorry if I labeled anyone incorrectly). It’s all debated openly, challenged, and honest.

    While I would be wary about recommending the podcast to immediate family and TBM friends (my wife knows about it, but doesn’t listen), I would recommend it to people who want to get to understand Mormonism as a whole (not Mainstream Mormonism).

    Which is why I’m glad the discussion about “Leaving the Church but not Leaving it Alone” was brought up again. It gives perspective for those who aren’t familiar with Mormonism the cultural impact that it has on it’s members, both current and former, from all sides of the perspective.

    Anyways, enough talk, MORE GUSHING! CONGRATULATIONS!! Here’s to another 66 episodes!

  18. brandt Reply

    Happy Anniversary! 66 episodes, to crank one out about every week, is quite the accomplishment! MAZEL TOV!

    While I’m probably one of the outliers (a TBM ), I guess I feel I can objectively separate my belief in Mormonism from my objective fascination of Mormonism as a culture. That being said, having all the viewpoints that you do (even Mike) gives one a broad view for not only the experiences wrapped up in Mormonism. From Nyal’s ex-Mormon perspective, to Mike’s “right of center” perspective, to Tom’s NOM/Open perspective, to John’s nonpracticing perspective (sorry if I labeled anyone incorrectly). It’s all debated openly, challenged, and honest.

    While I would be wary about recommending the podcast to immediate family and TBM friends (my wife knows about it, but doesn’t listen), I would recommend it to people who want to get to understand Mormonism as a whole (not Mainstream Mormonism).

    Which is why I’m glad the discussion about “Leaving the Church but not Leaving it Alone” was brought up again. It gives perspective for those who aren’t familiar with Mormonism the cultural impact that it has on it’s members, both current and former, from all sides of the perspective.

    Anyways, enough talk, MORE GUSHING! CONGRATULATIONS!! Here’s to another 66 episodes!

  19. JackUK Reply

    Mormon Expression is a year old already, thats amazing
    Hope your’e just getting started!!!!
    Here’s to many more episodes in the future….

  20. JackUK Reply

    Mormon Expression is a year old already, thats amazing
    Hope your’e just getting started!!!!
    Here’s to many more episodes in the future….

  21. Laura Reply

    Congratulations on a truly awesome year! I listened joyfully to the first episode one year ago just a day or so after it was first posted and I haven’t missed an episode since. I love the balance in the panel (although more female voices would be great, thank you Zilpha). I am honored and humbled to have been able to participate in my small way, also. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  22. Laura Reply

    Congratulations on a truly awesome year! I listened joyfully to the first episode one year ago just a day or so after it was first posted and I haven’t missed an episode since. I love the balance in the panel (although more female voices would be great, thank you Zilpha). I am honored and humbled to have been able to participate in my small way, also. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  23. Richard Reply

    Way to go! Thanks for all the hard work. I have truly enjoyed the podcast over the past year.

  24. Richard Reply

    Way to go! Thanks for all the hard work. I have truly enjoyed the podcast over the past year.

  25. Samantha Reply

    Congratulations for your anniversary. I love this podcast. I wish you have more years to come. Keep on posting more episodes. Thanks.

  26. Samantha Reply

    Congratulations for your anniversary. I love this podcast. I wish you have more years to come. Keep on posting more episodes. Thanks.

  27. Joseph Reply

    I really love the podcast, everyone! And I share John’s interest in exploring the middle ground between Mormons and “gentiles” — I think both groups are much more alike than many realize. We learn from one another, and (in many ways) mirror one another (as two sides of the same coin, two different faces of the same human silliness). Thanks for giving that dialogue a really nice place to live, Mormon Expression (every last one of you, including homophobic, sexist Mike and “anti-Mormon” Nyal)!

  28. Joseph Reply

    I really love the podcast, everyone! And I share John’s interest in exploring the middle ground between Mormons and “gentiles” — I think both groups are much more alike than many realize. We learn from one another, and (in many ways) mirror one another (as two sides of the same coin, two different faces of the same human silliness). Thanks for giving that dialogue a really nice place to live, Mormon Expression (every last one of you, including homophobic, sexist Mike and “anti-Mormon” Nyal)!

  29. Sam Andy Reply

    I listened to this episode this morning and reflected on what ME has meant to me over the last year. I wish all of you were in my ward. Even Mike. I would love to heckle his EQ lessons. I feel like I know each of you and can relate to your struggles with the culture and the faith. I like how George and Tom are able to find a balance, but I wonder, if like Nyal says, taking a stand could eventually be the best route. I look forward to new episodes and am very grateful to John for launching and maintaining the podcast, and to the great panelists and guests for their time and insights. For me, you’re a lifeline of sanity and reason in a “Twilight Zone” of Mormonism.

  30. Sam Andy Reply

    I listened to this episode this morning and reflected on what ME has meant to me over the last year. I wish all of you were in my ward. Even Mike. I would love to heckle his EQ lessons. I feel like I know each of you and can relate to your struggles with the culture and the faith. I like how George and Tom are able to find a balance, but I wonder, if like Nyal says, taking a stand could eventually be the best route. I look forward to new episodes and am very grateful to John for launching and maintaining the podcast, and to the great panelists and guests for their time and insights. For me, you’re a lifeline of sanity and reason in a “Twilight Zone” of Mormonism.

  31. Mike Tannehill Reply

    I finally got a chance to listen to this one yestewrday. It was great to hear the original crowd gather together and reminisce about the show. I know Jim is in the middle of a big move, and it was a shame he wasnt able to join in.

    I think I can join in the chorus of voices in sayign that after each episode you sit back and think “Man, that was the best one yet!” and then you get that sort of let down feeling because you know it will be a week before a new one arrives.

    Just a short word about the comments made in regards to my participation:

    1) To my knowledge I have never made any sexist comments, and while I have trouble with the term “homophobic” (it implies fear rather than the disgust most people have towards the lifestyle) any anti homosexual comments I have made were here on the comments board where they were pertinant to the conversation. (I caught what appeared to be an edit point in there, did I miss something?)

    2) Nyals comments were very insightful and appreciated. I in fact do not see it as my right to accept or reject the doctrines I choose. The caffeteria mindset is a piss poor attitude in my opinion.
    Nyal said it this way: Mike “.. Tries to make it work in reality, not reality work for it”. In the doctrine and covenants section one there is a reference to Gods displeasure regarding those who create their own Gods after the image of the world. We are supposed to allow the Holy Ghost to shape us and inspire us and bring about a change in us. We are not supposed to shape our God to fit our own world view.

    3) Tom mentions Mormons who take everything as real and literal. What good is a church that is neither of those things?

    • Sam Andy Reply

      I loved that comment from Nyal. He has had some zingers.

      Individuals are only following the Church’s lead by fitting their faith into reality. There are so many examples I don’t know where to begin. And then those changes fade into forgotten history in what Lavina Fielding Anderson calls “Institutional Forgetting.” The church sees no benefit in stirring the pot of history and bringing unsavory tidbits to the surface. So the members plug along with the latest redacted manual or updated conference talk. Someone once asked, “What do Mormons believe?” Answer: “The last thing they were told.”

    • Scottro Reply

      Mike – “To my knowledge I have never made any sexist comments” yes, and that’s the problem.

    • Tom Perry Reply

      It seems everyone gets a chance to reply to Mike, so I guess it’s my turn.

      First off, just to get this out of the way, Mike I really do respect you and your opinions. I don’t agree with many of the things you say, but I do think highly of you. I guess I probably frustrate you about as much as you frustrate me.

      Mike, “To my knowledge I have never made any sexist comments”
      -In reference to your controversial Doctrine of Names you stated in Episode 61: “A woman is either tied to her father or to her husband.”
      Mike, you may not believe that statement is sexist, but it is.

      Mike, “any anti homosexual comments I have made were here on the comments board where they were pertinant to the conversation.”
      -Why are you trying to separate your statements from what is said on the podcast to what is said in the comments section? Why are you trying to separate the two? If you say something, whether it is here in the comments or on the podcast, isn’t it still coming from YOU? If you say something very anti-homosexual why does it matter if it comes from your voice or your fingertips? It appears to me that you are trying to backpedal from some of your anti-homosexual statements a bit. I could very easily pull some of the terrible and hurtful things you have said about homosexuals, but as long as you admit to saying them I see no additional reason to “pour salt in the wounds”.

      Mike, “(I caught what appeared to be an edit point in there, did I miss something?)”
      -Yes you heard the edit point correctly. It was nothing more than a dropped call, nothing more. Feel free to ask anyone who was there.

      Mike, “The caffeteria mindset is a piss poor attitude in my opinion.”
      -You may not agree with me when I say this, but Mike… Every Mormon is a cafeteria Mormon. You included. We just sit at different degrees of our “cafeteria-ism”. And for the record, I agree that a cafeteria mindset sounds disingenuous. So we agree here.

      Mike, “Tom mentions Mormons who take everything as real and literal. What good is a church that is neither of those things?”
      -You make a good point here. I just don’t like feeling like I need to take all that the Mormon church teaches as “real and literal”. Only because some of the things the church promotes doesn’t jive or work with reality. Creationism is a good example of this. Why should I feel pressured to subscribe to creationism when there is overwhelming evidence that supports evolution/natural selection?

      • Mike Tannehill Reply

        Tom,
        Thanks for the response.

        1)In regards to sexism and the sealing of a woman to her Father or Husband – You are sealed to your Father who will call you forth in the resurrection,( Assuming he is worthy) the same way you will call forth your wife and children. Does this upset you? Is it a sexist teaching?

        2)You make a good point, written or spoken it is the same. I’m not backpedaling, I stand by every comment I have made in regards to homosexuality. I guess in my head I see the audio version of ME as the face of the show that more people see. As a side note I thought I was being very kind and reserved in what I said on the homosexual thread.

        3)Only a dropped call? Thats a bummer.I recall some funny stuff that gets edited out. I was hoping for something more than a dropped call.

        I think we agree on the last two. A personal mantra of mine is that the most important commandment a person should follow is whichever of the commandments the Holy Ghost is encouraging you to follow that day. People do pick and choose what part of the church is most important to them. I dont have a problem with this as long as they understand that all of it is important and all of it is very real and very true.

        We have discussed crationism/evolution before. The bottom line on this is that you cannot seperate Adam and Christ. I hope you have found a way to accept Adam into your faith.

        • Gunnar R. Reply

          Mike, you said “We are not supposed to shape our God to fit our own world view.” The frustrating thing to me is your apparent inability to recognize that that is precisely what YOU are doing. What is worse, is that,IMHO, you systematically try to shape or distort reality to make it fit the world view that you perceive is the one officially endorsed by the Church, and ignore or dismiss those bits of reality that simply cannot be made to fit what Church authorities would rather have us believe (or, at least, what YOU think they would rather have us believe).

          • FWAnson

            Ditto Gunnar – I wish that I’d written that. Great job.

          • FWAnson

            Ditto Gunnar – I wish that I’d written that. Great job.

    • Mister IT Reply

      “Tries to make it work in reality, not reality work for it”

      Mike, I’ve heard this concept expressed this way:

      “The underlying problem with Mormonism is that it bends the facts to meet the conclusion – not vice versa.”

      So your reference to D&C is really irrelevant because we’re not talking about theology v. apostasy here, we’re taking about reality v. unreality, facts v. fiction, evidence v. Mormn dogma.

      Or, if you prefer, (and most directly) psychosis v. an accurate perception of reality.*

      I hope that helps clarify what, I’m pretty sure, Nyal was trying to say.
      (Nyal, please feel free to correct me if I’m wrong)

      * I wrote about this dynamic in my article, “The Problem of ‘The Mormon Tank’ see http://www.concernedchristians.com/index.php?option=com_fireboard&Itemid=42&func=view&id=82448&catid=10

  32. Mike Tannehill Reply

    I finally got a chance to listen to this one yestewrday. It was great to hear the original crowd gather together and reminisce about the show. I know Jim is in the middle of a big move, and it was a shame he wasnt able to join in.

    I think I can join in the chorus of voices in sayign that after each episode you sit back and think “Man, that was the best one yet!” and then you get that sort of let down feeling because you know it will be a week before a new one arrives.

    Just a short word about the comments made in regards to my participation:

    1) To my knowledge I have never made any sexist comments, and while I have trouble with the term “homophobic” (it implies fear rather than the disgust most people have towards the lifestyle) any anti homosexual comments I have made were here on the comments board where they were pertinant to the conversation. (I caught what appeared to be an edit point in there, did I miss something?)

    2) Nyals comments were very insightful and appreciated. I in fact do not see it as my right to accept or reject the doctrines I choose. The caffeteria mindset is a piss poor attitude in my opinion.
    Nyal said it this way: Mike “.. Tries to make it work in reality, not reality work for it”. In the doctrine and covenants section one there is a reference to Gods displeasure regarding those who create their own Gods after the image of the world. We are supposed to allow the Holy Ghost to shape us and inspire us and bring about a change in us. We are not supposed to shape our God to fit our own world view.

    3) Tom mentions Mormons who take everything as real and literal. What good is a church that is neither of those things?

    • Sam Andy Reply

      I loved that comment from Nyal. He has had some zingers.

      Individuals are only following the Church’s lead by fitting their faith into reality. There are so many examples I don’t know where to begin. And then those changes fade into forgotten history in what Lavina Fielding Anderson calls “Institutional Forgetting.” The church sees no benefit in stirring the pot of history and bringing unsavory tidbits to the surface. So the members plug along with the latest redacted manual or updated conference talk. Someone once asked, “What do Mormons believe?” Answer: “The last thing they were told.”

    • Scottro Reply

      Mike – “To my knowledge I have never made any sexist comments” yes, and that’s the problem.

    • Tom Perry Reply

      It seems everyone gets a chance to reply to Mike, so I guess it’s my turn.

      First off, just to get this out of the way, Mike I really do respect you and your opinions. I don’t agree with many of the things you say, but I do think highly of you. I guess I probably frustrate you about as much as you frustrate me.

      Mike, “To my knowledge I have never made any sexist comments”
      -In reference to your controversial Doctrine of Names you stated in Episode 61: “A woman is either tied to her father or to her husband.”
      Mike, you may not believe that statement is sexist, but it is.

      Mike, “any anti homosexual comments I have made were here on the comments board where they were pertinant to the conversation.”
      -Why are you trying to separate your statements from what is said on the podcast to what is said in the comments section? Why are you trying to separate the two? If you say something, whether it is here in the comments or on the podcast, isn’t it still coming from YOU? If you say something very anti-homosexual why does it matter if it comes from your voice or your fingertips? It appears to me that you are trying to backpedal from some of your anti-homosexual statements a bit. I could very easily pull some of the terrible and hurtful things you have said about homosexuals, but as long as you admit to saying them I see no additional reason to “pour salt in the wounds”.

      Mike, “(I caught what appeared to be an edit point in there, did I miss something?)”
      -Yes you heard the edit point correctly. It was nothing more than a dropped call, nothing more. Feel free to ask anyone who was there.

      Mike, “The caffeteria mindset is a piss poor attitude in my opinion.”
      -You may not agree with me when I say this, but Mike… Every Mormon is a cafeteria Mormon. You included. We just sit at different degrees of our “cafeteria-ism”. And for the record, I agree that a cafeteria mindset sounds disingenuous. So we agree here.

      Mike, “Tom mentions Mormons who take everything as real and literal. What good is a church that is neither of those things?”
      -You make a good point here. I just don’t like feeling like I need to take all that the Mormon church teaches as “real and literal”. Only because some of the things the church promotes doesn’t jive or work with reality. Creationism is a good example of this. Why should I feel pressured to subscribe to creationism when there is overwhelming evidence that supports evolution/natural selection?

      • Mike Tannehill Reply

        Tom,
        Thanks for the response.

        1)In regards to sexism and the sealing of a woman to her Father or Husband – You are sealed to your Father who will call you forth in the resurrection,( Assuming he is worthy) the same way you will call forth your wife and children. Does this upset you? Is it a sexist teaching?

        2)You make a good point, written or spoken it is the same. I’m not backpedaling, I stand by every comment I have made in regards to homosexuality. I guess in my head I see the audio version of ME as the face of the show that more people see. As a side note I thought I was being very kind and reserved in what I said on the homosexual thread.

        3)Only a dropped call? Thats a bummer.I recall some funny stuff that gets edited out. I was hoping for something more than a dropped call.

        I think we agree on the last two. A personal mantra of mine is that the most important commandment a person should follow is whichever of the commandments the Holy Ghost is encouraging you to follow that day. People do pick and choose what part of the church is most important to them. I dont have a problem with this as long as they understand that all of it is important and all of it is very real and very true.

        We have discussed crationism/evolution before. The bottom line on this is that you cannot seperate Adam and Christ. I hope you have found a way to accept Adam into your faith.

        • Gunnar R. Reply

          Mike, you said “We are not supposed to shape our God to fit our own world view.” The frustrating thing to me is your apparent inability to recognize that that is precisely what YOU are doing. What is worse, is that,IMHO, you systematically try to shape or distort reality to make it fit the world view that you perceive is the one officially endorsed by the Church, and ignore or dismiss those bits of reality that simply cannot be made to fit what Church authorities would rather have us believe (or, at least, what YOU think they would rather have us believe).

    • Mister IT Reply

      “Tries to make it work in reality, not reality work for it”

      Mike, I’ve heard this concept expressed this way:

      “The underlying problem with Mormonism is that it bends the facts to meet the conclusion – not vice versa.”

      So your reference to D&C is really irrelevant because we’re not talking about theology v. apostasy here, we’re taking about reality v. unreality, facts v. fiction, evidence v. Mormn dogma.

      Or, if you prefer, (and most directly) psychosis v. an accurate perception of reality.*

      I hope that helps clarify what, I’m pretty sure, Nyal was trying to say.
      (Nyal, please feel free to correct me if I’m wrong)

      * I wrote about this dynamic in my article, “The Problem of ‘The Mormon Tank’ see http://www.concernedchristians.com/index.php?option=com_fireboard&Itemid=42&func=view&id=82448&catid=10

  33. OzPoof Reply

    I’m so glad I found this podcast. Not only is it entertaining, but I learn so much from it.

    I was born in the church, but now know so much more about its early history. I have learnt more from this podcast that I ever did at church.

    I appreciate all contributers, and I think your voices are great!

    John – you could’ve fooled me that you aren’t a professional interviewer and broadcaster. Your interviewing style is fantastic. You know how to get an answer and know what questions to ask.

    I really enjoy the discussions between the regulars. Each adds a different perspective and the responses demonstrate how to engage with family members with similar views.

    Although I don’t agree with Mike much, I appreciate his input and hope he stays on.

    Zilpha, you sound great. You seem calm and rational and add a woman’s viewpoint.

    Nyal, you were great “angry” and still are great.

    Tom, Glenn (great laugh in ep 65b) Bridget, George, Tom, and James are all valuable members too.

    Here’s to another year (at least) and keeping the team intact.

  34. OzPoof Reply

    I’m so glad I found this podcast. Not only is it entertaining, but I learn so much from it.

    I was born in the church, but now know so much more about its early history. I have learnt more from this podcast that I ever did at church.

    I appreciate all contributers, and I think your voices are great!

    John – you could’ve fooled me that you aren’t a professional interviewer and broadcaster. Your interviewing style is fantastic. You know how to get an answer and know what questions to ask.

    I really enjoy the discussions between the regulars. Each adds a different perspective and the responses demonstrate how to engage with family members with similar views.

    Although I don’t agree with Mike much, I appreciate his input and hope he stays on.

    Zilpha, you sound great. You seem calm and rational and add a woman’s viewpoint.

    Nyal, you were great “angry” and still are great.

    Tom, Glenn (great laugh in ep 65b) Bridget, George, Tom, and James are all valuable members too.

    Here’s to another year (at least) and keeping the team intact.

  35. Scottro Reply

    Nyal, we need you, sometimes desperately. I love everyone on the program, but what you offer is unique. I like that you tell it how it is. Please please be on as many episodes as you can. If you need extra incentives, tell John Dehlin to give you a raise, after this episode I know you’re on his payroll. (just kidding, and John D if you’re reading you know I love you)

    I can’t add much else that hasn’t already been said, but keep it up Mormon Expression!

  36. Scottro Reply

    Nyal, we need you, sometimes desperately. I love everyone on the program, but what you offer is unique. I like that you tell it how it is. Please please be on as many episodes as you can. If you need extra incentives, tell John Dehlin to give you a raise, after this episode I know you’re on his payroll. (just kidding, and John D if you’re reading you know I love you)

    I can’t add much else that hasn’t already been said, but keep it up Mormon Expression!

  37. Nyal Reply

    What a great year it has been. I was surprised the time went by so quickly. One day I am wondering how to plug my earphones into those little hole things, and the next John is scheduling this episode. Where will we be in another year? Prison, if there is any sense of karma.

    I appreciate all the kind words about the podcast, John has done a marvelous job.

    scottro- shucks, man. I am just talking in a microphone… 😀

  38. Nyal Reply

    What a great year it has been. I was surprised the time went by so quickly. One day I am wondering how to plug my earphones into those little hole things, and the next John is scheduling this episode. Where will we be in another year? Prison, if there is any sense of karma.

    I appreciate all the kind words about the podcast, John has done a marvelous job.

    scottro- shucks, man. I am just talking in a microphone… 😀

  39. andrew Reply

    if you knew john dehlin, you would know he does not have a blazing ego or a need to be THE voice of open mormonism. in fact, he has been an advocate for multiple voices, including yours.

  40. andrew Reply

    if you knew john dehlin, you would know he does not have a blazing ego or a need to be THE voice of open mormonism. in fact, he has been an advocate for multiple voices, including yours.

  41. Patrick Reply

    Thank you Mormon Expression for not hiding your light under a bushel. I stumbled upon you guys on episode eight. I was in that angry place that Nyal mentioned. The candor on the show was what I needed to become comfortable with my mormon culture without the hostility.

    Nyal, if Karma sends you guys to prison, it’ll be the one with the tennis courts and drinks served in a pineapple.

    I’ll drink something bubbly in toast to you guys for a job well done.

  42. Patrick Reply

    Thank you Mormon Expression for not hiding your light under a bushel. I stumbled upon you guys on episode eight. I was in that angry place that Nyal mentioned. The candor on the show was what I needed to become comfortable with my mormon culture without the hostility.

    Nyal, if Karma sends you guys to prison, it’ll be the one with the tennis courts and drinks served in a pineapple.

    I’ll drink something bubbly in toast to you guys for a job well done.

  43. Gail F. Bartholomew Reply

    Thank you all. John I really love your philosophy that under lies this pod cased: Mormonism is interesting and we are going to talk about it/where ever we are in belief or attendance being Mormon is still part of who we are. You have been an enjoyable part of my life and my journey trying to figure what my being Mormon looks like. You fill a niche that is filled no where ells. Thanks again. Please continue.

  44. Gail F. Bartholomew Reply

    Thank you all. John I really love your philosophy that under lies this pod cased: Mormonism is interesting and we are going to talk about it/where ever we are in belief or attendance being Mormon is still part of who we are. You have been an enjoyable part of my life and my journey trying to figure what my being Mormon looks like. You fill a niche that is filled no where ells. Thanks again. Please continue.

  45. Stephen Clarke (aka "Nevo") Reply

    Congratulations, guys, on your first anniversary. I’ve enjoyed a number of the podcasts. My favorite so far was Glenn’s interview with Kaboh (I hope Glenn sticks around–he’s great). I also really enjoyed the Lost Ten Tribes podcasts, particularly the surreptitiously taped “bonus” episode. Great discussion, and funny too. Another highlight was hearing “Alf O’Mega”, who I met on the boards ten years ago and for whom I have enormous admiration and respect.

    My one quibble is that I wish the panel was better prepared for some of the discussions. Being a stickler for accuracy, it is cringe-inducing to hear people discuss topics that they know little or nothing about. And have no one correct their misrepresentations. Naturally I prefer informed discussion to uninformed discussion.

    A trivial example, perhaps, but I noticed that no one in the recent First Vision podcasts seemed to be aware that “Joshua the Jewish Minister” wasn’t, in fact, a Jewish minister (and wasn’t named Joshua). Hearing him referred to as a “rabbi” gave me heartburn. Also, no one seems to have noticed that the vision account in the Wentworth letter is essentially identical to the account published by Orson Pratt in 1840.

    But these are minor points. Even full of inaccuracies, many of the podcasts are still fun to listen to. Finally, I have to say I loved the bit John and Zilpha do before some of the podcasts, advertising the upcoming live broadcast and essay contest. Wonderful timing, chemistry, and you both have great voices!

    Best of luck in year two!

    • John Larsen Reply

      Hey, Nevo, thanks for your kind words. I have the same quibble. I agree that we could be better prepared, but oh well. I disagree with the idea that we know little or nothing.

      As to Joshua, we referred to him that way because that is how he was referred to in the text. I think we all knew he wasn’t in fact a Rabbi–that was said tongue in cheek. And we didn’t review the Orson Pratt version, so that point wasn’t germane.

      You should come on. Drop me a line.

      • Stephen Clarke (aka "Nevo") Reply

        Hi John,

        Sorry, I shouldn’t have said “little or nothing.” That’s too harsh. And unfair. I certainly didn’t mean it as a generalization. You yourself are very well informed on an impressively broad range of Mormon-related subjects.

        But it’s like when someone in Sunday School states as fact that “Jesus didn’t drink wine. It was actually grape juice.” Or, the “the eye of the needle” didn’t refer to a literal needle, but a gate in the city wall that a camel had to kneel down to get through.” And everyone nods approvingly. Yet it’s total BS. That’s the sort of thing I find cringe-inducing.

        • NightAvatar Reply

          I’m glad you sort of corrected yourself. I was about to suggest it must be awful for you to attend church as so many of the speakers there know literally little or nothing about what they’re talking about. Sunday School is a good example but half the talks in Sac Meeting suffer the same fate. I guess I am sort of like you in the way that I can’t stand inaccuracy spread as “truth” – which unfortunately happens all to often at church. That’s why I quit attending. Far too frustrating.

          It would be interesting to hear you in a podcast. You should contact John.

        • John Larsen Reply

          No worries, brother. By all means, if we say something inaccurate, please feel free to correct us on it. As I have stated on the podcast the dummies series is because we aren’t experts.

        • brandt Reply

          Don’t forget the oft-quoted scripture from Christ that says “I never said it would be easy, I only said it would be worth it.”

          (and that comment was said with tongue firmly planted in-cheek, in case anyone was wondering).

        • Swearing Elder Reply

          Ah, great minds think alike…
          http://swearingelders.blogspot.com/2009/09/what-if-sacrament-meeting-were-like.html

          If there were actually some dialogue in church, I might still go. But any faith-promoting B.S. is accepted and any kind of real discussion is usually quashed.

          Mormon Expression provides a great avenue to interact with Mormonism, something I’m destined/doomed to do with many generations of Mormon (including pioneers and polygamists) blood behind me.

  46. Stephen Clarke (aka "Nevo") Reply

    Congratulations, guys, on your first anniversary. I’ve enjoyed a number of the podcasts. My favorite so far was Glenn’s interview with Kaboh (I hope Glenn sticks around–he’s great). I also really enjoyed the Lost Ten Tribes podcasts, particularly the surreptitiously taped “bonus” episode. Great discussion, and funny too. Another highlight was hearing “Alf O’Mega”, who I met on the boards ten years ago and for whom I have enormous admiration and respect.

    My one quibble is that I wish the panel was better prepared for some of the discussions. Being a stickler for accuracy, it is cringe-inducing to hear people discuss topics that they know little or nothing about. And have no one correct their misrepresentations. Naturally I prefer informed discussion to uninformed discussion.

    A trivial example, perhaps, but I noticed that no one in the recent First Vision podcasts seemed to be aware that “Joshua the Jewish Minister” wasn’t, in fact, a Jewish minister (and wasn’t named Joshua). Hearing him referred to as a “rabbi” gave me heartburn. Also, no one seems to have noticed that the vision account in the Wentworth letter is essentially identical to the account published by Orson Pratt in 1840.

    But these are minor points. Even full of inaccuracies, many of the podcasts are still fun to listen to. Finally, I have to say I loved the bit John and Zilpha do before some of the podcasts, advertising the upcoming live broadcast and essay contest. Wonderful timing, chemistry, and you both have great voices!

    Best of luck in year two!

    • John Larsen Reply

      Hey, Nevo, thanks for your kind words. I have the same quibble. I agree that we could be better prepared, but oh well. I disagree with the idea that we know little or nothing.

      As to Joshua, we referred to him that way because that is how he was referred to in the text. I think we all knew he wasn’t in fact a Rabbi–that was said tongue in cheek. And we didn’t review the Orson Pratt version, so that point wasn’t germane.

      You should come on. Drop me a line.

      • Stephen Clarke (aka "Nevo") Reply

        Hi John,

        Sorry, I shouldn’t have said “little or nothing.” That’s too harsh. And unfair. I certainly didn’t mean it as a generalization. You yourself are very well informed on an impressively broad range of Mormon-related subjects.

        But it’s like when someone in Sunday School states as fact that “Jesus didn’t drink wine. It was actually grape juice.” Or, the “the eye of the needle” didn’t refer to a literal needle, but a gate in the city wall that a camel had to kneel down to get through.” And everyone nods approvingly. Yet it’s total BS. That’s the sort of thing I find cringe-inducing.

        • NightAvatar Reply

          I’m glad you sort of corrected yourself. I was about to suggest it must be awful for you to attend church as so many of the speakers there know literally little or nothing about what they’re talking about. Sunday School is a good example but half the talks in Sac Meeting suffer the same fate. I guess I am sort of like you in the way that I can’t stand inaccuracy spread as “truth” – which unfortunately happens all to often at church. That’s why I quit attending. Far too frustrating.

          It would be interesting to hear you in a podcast. You should contact John.

        • John Larsen Reply

          No worries, brother. By all means, if we say something inaccurate, please feel free to correct us on it. As I have stated on the podcast the dummies series is because we aren’t experts.

        • brandt Reply

          Don’t forget the oft-quoted scripture from Christ that says “I never said it would be easy, I only said it would be worth it.”

          (and that comment was said with tongue firmly planted in-cheek, in case anyone was wondering).

        • Swearing Elder Reply

          Ah, great minds think alike…
          http://swearingelders.blogspot.com/2009/09/what-if-sacrament-meeting-were-like.html

          If there were actually some dialogue in church, I might still go. But any faith-promoting B.S. is accepted and any kind of real discussion is usually quashed.

          Mormon Expression provides a great avenue to interact with Mormonism, something I’m destined/doomed to do with many generations of Mormon (including pioneers and polygamists) blood behind me.

  47. John Dehlin Reply

    Just finished listening. LOVED this episode, as I do pretty much all of them.

    For the record….Mormon Expression ABSOLUTELY was an inspiration in my return to podcasting…though other things influenced it as well.

    Nyal — You’ve got me all wrong…but I don’t blame you (I’ve changed a ton, and keep changing)…but I’m happy to chat w/ you about it (via phone or whatever) if/when you have time/interest.

    Keep up the great work, fellas. You guys are doing amazingly wonderful work. If/when I do hang up the microphone again….I will be SOOO happy to know that Mormon Expression is holding down the Mormon Podcasting fort. If I can ever help you guys…I hope you’ll let me know. And I can’t wait to meet you all in August.

  48. John Dehlin Reply

    Just finished listening. LOVED this episode, as I do pretty much all of them.

    For the record….Mormon Expression ABSOLUTELY was an inspiration in my return to podcasting…though other things influenced it as well.

    Nyal — You’ve got me all wrong…but I don’t blame you (I’ve changed a ton, and keep changing)…but I’m happy to chat w/ you about it (via phone or whatever) if/when you have time/interest.

    Keep up the great work, fellas. You guys are doing amazingly wonderful work. If/when I do hang up the microphone again….I will be SOOO happy to know that Mormon Expression is holding down the Mormon Podcasting fort. If I can ever help you guys…I hope you’ll let me know. And I can’t wait to meet you all in August.

  49. Gunnar R. Reply

    Thank you for another great podcast. I found the history of how it got started to be very interesting. Among the appeals of this podcast is getting to read and hear inputs from some of the people I grew to so much admire from the glory days of the 2think.org blog (such as Alf O’Mega), in which I was once a very active participant.

    I very much appreciate and admire the aims of this podcast, and am glad to have found it.

    I feel a particular kinship to Nyal and Richard/Night Avatar, particularly because they are both in Norway, the country of my birth (my family immigrated to the U.S. when I was five). I had an opportunity to visit my relatives in Stavanger after my term of service in the Danish Mission many years ago, and was delighted and astounded by how beautiful the country of my nativity is. I am quite curious about how both those two gentlemen wound up living in Norway. If you two would be interested in e-mailing me, I would be delighted!

    • NightAvatar Reply

      Contact me Gunnar! My contact info is at my website. (click my name)
      I just met Nyal in person today, in fact. It was cool! Got a photo of the two of us together at this famous naked-statues-park in Oslo. I posted it on Facebook, if you friend me there you can take a look.

  50. Gunnar R. Reply

    Thank you for another great podcast. I found the history of how it got started to be very interesting. Among the appeals of this podcast is getting to read and hear inputs from some of the people I grew to so much admire from the glory days of the 2think.org blog (such as Alf O’Mega), in which I was once a very active participant.

    I very much appreciate and admire the aims of this podcast, and am glad to have found it.

    I feel a particular kinship to Nyal and Richard/Night Avatar, particularly because they are both in Norway, the country of my birth (my family immigrated to the U.S. when I was five). I had an opportunity to visit my relatives in Stavanger after my term of service in the Danish Mission many years ago, and was delighted and astounded by how beautiful the country of my nativity is. I am quite curious about how both those two gentlemen wound up living in Norway. If you two would be interested in e-mailing me, I would be delighted!

    • NightAvatar Reply

      Contact me Gunnar! My contact info is at my website. (click my name)
      I just met Nyal in person today, in fact. It was cool! Got a photo of the two of us together at this famous naked-statues-park in Oslo. I posted it on Facebook, if you friend me there you can take a look.

  51. badseed Reply

    Happy Anniversary!

    Thanks to all involved for making it happen. It can’t be easy. The info has been helpful and, yes, it is good to know I am not alone dealing with issues of Mormonism outside of a chapel setting.

    I also think Nyal is an important part of the Mormon Expression spectrum (Jim as well). I understand the frustration and, dare I say, anger he expresses because I have felt it too— and sometimes still do. That needs to be aired.

    A quick note about Mormon Expression vs Stories. Love them both and see value in the way each ‘rolls’. Between the 2 I have some really great material to listen to at work. For years I have tried to figure out where John D. is coming from and although I don’t choose to stay active as he does, I appreciate his work. Patient people in the middle will hopefully eventually help bridge the gap between TBM and Ex-Mormons.

    Think I just may have to reserve a spot at the live broadcast so I can meet some of you people for reals.

  52. badseed Reply

    Happy Anniversary!

    Thanks to all involved for making it happen. It can’t be easy. The info has been helpful and, yes, it is good to know I am not alone dealing with issues of Mormonism outside of a chapel setting.

    I also think Nyal is an important part of the Mormon Expression spectrum (Jim as well). I understand the frustration and, dare I say, anger he expresses because I have felt it too— and sometimes still do. That needs to be aired.

    A quick note about Mormon Expression vs Stories. Love them both and see value in the way each ‘rolls’. Between the 2 I have some really great material to listen to at work. For years I have tried to figure out where John D. is coming from and although I don’t choose to stay active as he does, I appreciate his work. Patient people in the middle will hopefully eventually help bridge the gap between TBM and Ex-Mormons.

    Think I just may have to reserve a spot at the live broadcast so I can meet some of you people for reals.

  53. James Reply

    Gonna do a John Dehlin defense as well. After Nyal’s comments, I understood how someone could see JD as ego driven at a superficial level, but from my understanding of him, his work, his motives, and from the HUGE impact his work has had on my life, I just can’t see the sacrifices of time and money, to do what he does, just to feed an ego. It doesn’t make sense in my head. JD seems to hit the topics that are timely for my own needs. My only criticism is that his interview style tends to be bit leading at times, and I would rather the guest go to places on their own rather than be lead there, but otherwise I feel a deep sense of gratitude to JD.

    • Mister IT Reply

      Ditto. John is a good guy – even I, a notorious Mormon Critic – have a TON of respect for him and his work.

      Granted, he drives me frakin’ nuts every time I hear him say, “Not everything that’s true is useful” but over the years I have come to appreciate his dilemma and respect his hard position as a reasonable voice for reform from within Mormonism.

      And, Nyal, while I COMPLETELY agree with you that staying in the LdS Church isn’t the optimal decision in regard to mental, emotional, and spiritual health sometimes it’s the best choice that closeted unbelievers can manage since, as John noted well, Mormon is so effective in taking entire families, over several generations, hostage.

      Arza Evans has likened it to leaving the mafia and I think that he has a point (see http://keystonebooks.com/FAMILIES_HELD_HOSTAGE.pdf )

      And as Derek Prince said so well:

      THE ACTUAL & THE IDEAL
      There are two things, the actual and the ideal.

      To be mature is to see the ideal and live with the actual.

      To fail is to accept the actual and reject the ideal,
      and to accept only that which is ideal,
      and refuse the actual is to be immature.

      Do not criticize the actual because you have seen the ideal.
      Do not reject the ideal because you see the actual.

      Maturity is to live with the actual but hold on to the ideal.

      — Derek Prince, 1977

  54. James Reply

    Gonna do a John Dehlin defense as well. After Nyal’s comments, I understood how someone could see JD as ego driven at a superficial level, but from my understanding of him, his work, his motives, and from the HUGE impact his work has had on my life, I just can’t see the sacrifices of time and money, to do what he does, just to feed an ego. It doesn’t make sense in my head. JD seems to hit the topics that are timely for my own needs. My only criticism is that his interview style tends to be bit leading at times, and I would rather the guest go to places on their own rather than be lead there, but otherwise I feel a deep sense of gratitude to JD.

    • Mister IT Reply

      Ditto. John is a good guy – even I, a notorious Mormon Critic – have a TON of respect for him and his work.

      Granted, he drives me frakin’ nuts every time I hear him say, “Not everything that’s true is useful” but over the years I have come to appreciate his dilemma and respect his hard position as a reasonable voice for reform from within Mormonism.

      And, Nyal, while I COMPLETELY agree with you that staying in the LdS Church isn’t the optimal decision in regard to mental, emotional, and spiritual health sometimes it’s the best choice that closeted unbelievers can manage since, as John noted well, Mormon is so effective in taking entire families, over several generations, hostage.

      Arza Evans has likened it to leaving the mafia and I think that he has a point (see http://keystonebooks.com/FAMILIES_HELD_HOSTAGE.pdf )

      And as Derek Prince said so well:

      THE ACTUAL & THE IDEAL
      There are two things, the actual and the ideal.

      To be mature is to see the ideal and live with the actual.

      To fail is to accept the actual and reject the ideal,
      and to accept only that which is ideal,
      and refuse the actual is to be immature.

      Do not criticize the actual because you have seen the ideal.
      Do not reject the ideal because you see the actual.

      Maturity is to live with the actual but hold on to the ideal.

      — Derek Prince, 1977

  55. Vin Reply

    Let me also throw in a defense for John Dehlin. I find him to be a very selfless guy whose podcasts serve a very grateful listening group. It’s a different group than ME, but a group that desperately needs support as well.

    Nyal insists that it’s unhealthy to stay in the church after losing a literal belief in it, but Dehlin and others obviously disagree. They’ve made it work for them. Different things work for different people, and I think it’s critical to recognize that.

  56. Vin Reply

    Let me also throw in a defense for John Dehlin. I find him to be a very selfless guy whose podcasts serve a very grateful listening group. It’s a different group than ME, but a group that desperately needs support as well.

    Nyal insists that it’s unhealthy to stay in the church after losing a literal belief in it, but Dehlin and others obviously disagree. They’ve made it work for them. Different things work for different people, and I think it’s critical to recognize that.

  57. Dr. Shades Reply

    Yet another very worthwhile podcast. Thanks to everyone for the kind words at the beginning of the podcast.

    Nyal, I loved the comment you made about how it’s unhealthy NOT to move on.

    John Dehlin, have you articulated your reasons for returning to podcasting somewhere? If so, where?

    Everyone: I think a podcast about other podcasts would be/is a perfectly legitimate topic of conversation. I’d like to hear one on just that topic (so I know which other ones are worthwhile and which ones to avoid).

  58. Dr. Shades Reply

    Yet another very worthwhile podcast. Thanks to everyone for the kind words at the beginning of the podcast.

    Nyal, I loved the comment you made about how it’s unhealthy NOT to move on.

    John Dehlin, have you articulated your reasons for returning to podcasting somewhere? If so, where?

    Everyone: I think a podcast about other podcasts would be/is a perfectly legitimate topic of conversation. I’d like to hear one on just that topic (so I know which other ones are worthwhile and which ones to avoid).

  59. John Hamer Reply

    If John Dehlin’s retirement inspired you guys to start up and if you starting up inspired him to come back, we’re all doubly enriched.

    Great podcast, keep it up.

  60. John Hamer Reply

    If John Dehlin’s retirement inspired you guys to start up and if you starting up inspired him to come back, we’re all doubly enriched.

    Great podcast, keep it up.

  61. Glenn Reply

    My thoughts, Mike, are that this is stupid. My thoughts are that this is typical anti-intellectual rhetoric. And whoever wrote this (Joseph fielding McConkie or Craig Ostler or whoever) is not any smarter or more perceptive or more skilled at reasoning than I am — so why should I listen to what they have to say or follow their lead on anything — especially on devaluing things like education? I’m open to listening to new perspectives. And I am certain that they have experiences and understandings on things that I lack. But this is a stupid esoteric connect-the-dots game, and I have no patience or respect for it in the real world at all.

    If there is a god, Mike, he understands my thoughts and motivations, and he knows what has led me to the place I am in, where I have come from, where I am going — and for all I know he may have even led me here for some grand scheme that I don’t really know anything about — and if he exists, he loves me and cares about me all by himself without needing anyone like McConkie or Ostler or any other blowhard mignion yahoo to step in and tell me what they think I need to do to qualify for worthiness in his eyes. Whatever. There is a lot of good that I have learned being a mormon. A lot that I still hold on to and value. This isn’t any of it.

    • Elder Vader Reply

      When I noticed the reference was on page 634, I cast my mind back to my time at BYU.

      Friend 1: Yeah, (insert name of religion professor) used his royalties from his (insert name of bible prophet) commentary to buy a camaro.
      Friend 2: No. Whatever man, thats a rumor.
      Friend 1: I’m serious, I’m good friends with his son ____.
      Friend 3: I can second that. I’ve been in the camaro.

      If you’re a religion professor at BYU, and you want street cred, you pretty much have to write a multi-hundred page religion book. My favorite of all time still is Joseph Fielding McConkie’s ‘Answers to Gospel Questions You Shouldn’t Have Asked’.

  62. Anonymous Reply

    You are not the only one guilty of this heresy. Joseph Smith and Alma both took part too.

  63. Anonymous Reply

    “I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with senses, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.” -Galileo Galilei

  64. Kyle Harris Reply

    Let me ask you a question Mike. Do you think that these scholars that we aren’t supposed to learn anything from are generally correct or incorrect in what they teach? If they are generally correct, than what you are really promoting is ignorance, plain and simple. I think that is evil. If you really think that these scholars, who generally only teach things that have withstood the scrutiny of peer review and the scientific method, are actually wrong than you have such a skewed world view that it is almost impossible to even have an intelligent conversation with you. For example, If you think that prophets like JS Smith really know more about human evolution than actual biologists who study it for a living, than there really isn’t much of a conversation to have.

  65. Mike Tannehill Reply

    Thanks everyone for your input. I think many of oyu have taken the wrong slant about what was said. Both of these men are educators and so of course would not tell people to avoid being studios and/or not to educate ourselves. On the contrary every church leader I have ever heard speak on the subject of learning has encouraged us to seek out the best books and to never stop learning. The emphasis here is to remember to stand on sacred ground when you view the information that comes to you.

    I think it was Richard of Norway ( I feel like there should be a Sir in front of that) who stated that his patriarchal blessing told him to seek learning and to read and study. Mine does as well, but it adds a note along with that that says “Remember always that it is the instruction received from the Holy Ghost that will be best.” I respect the writing ability and research of Bart Ehrman, but I know by the spirit which parts of his writings are useful, and which parts to disregard.

    What is important to me in the above is the testimony that God the Father created the laws that govern all of creation. And yes that fact can be true and the teachings in Alma can stand along side it without any trouble. It is Gods nature and character that make Him who He is, and if He did not uphold the laws He created He would cease to be God. How could we excercise faith in a being whose nature we could not trust? I think all of us can relate to setting aside the need to discover every law and instead focus our attention on gaining the mind and insight into how those laws are formed and the attitude and perspective behind their formation.

    • Anonymous Reply

      @Mike Tannehill:

      “Remember always that it is the instruction received from the Holy Ghost that will be best.”

      The problem with that, as has been pointed out to you by several people, including myself, is the unreliability of claims of divine inspiration or of having received “instruction received from the Holy Ghost.” Many devoutly religious people have received mutually contradictory instructions and convictions that they all sincerely believed were from the Holy Ghost or a product of divine inspiration. Even Joseph Smith himself admitted on at least one occasion that he mistook a revelation from Satan for a revelation from God (the plan to sell the copyright for the Book of Mormon in Canada to raise money). If even he can be so mistaken, how can any of us ever be sure of correctly distinguishing a genuine divine inspiration from something that originated in our own imagination?

      It is still blazingly obvious to me that no precept or belief system is more deservedly suspect than one that can only be supported by claiming divine inspiration for it, whether via promptings of the Holy Ghost or any other way, no matter who or what claims such inspiration.

      • Mike Tannehill Reply

        It is one thing to receive a revelation, and another thing entirely to understand it. All of us have to grow up into the Holy Ghost. Sometimes we stumble along the way, but it is an important relationship to work on. Its nice that we have church leaders to help us along the way, and you know the guys in your ward I am talking about. It might not be the Bishop, maybe its a former bishop. Those guys who carry themselves in a mature fashion, guys you respect and admire because they sort of have received the image of Christ in their countenance.

        • Anonymous Reply

          The fact still remains that countless numbers of devout people of various, mutually contradictory religious belief systems sincerely claim to have received divine confirmation via the Holy Spirit, in answer to prayer and scripture study, that their own particular religion is the one true religion. Whether the problem is that they were mistaken about the real source of their “divine inspiration” or simply misunderstood the “revelation” because they had yet to “grow up into the Holy Ghost”, the unreliability of that means of discerning or testing for truth is still established beyond all reasonable doubt. I honestly don’t see how any honest person can escape that conclusion without deluding oneself!

          Besides that, in the case of Joseph Smith, we have incontrovertible evidence that he was not averse to lying when promoting what he claimed was God’s purposes (his untruthful denials of practicing polygamy, for just one example). So with him, it is not necessarily (and probably not) merely a case of mistaking the source of his revelations and prophecies or misunderstanding them when they turned out to be untrue.

          As for bishops and former bishops (and other local church leaders I have known) I have been very fortunate that I have yet to meet one or become acquainted with one that I did not genuinely like, or who I thought lacked good intentions. I particularly like the Korean American who is the current Bishop of the local ward where I now live. This does not change the fact that they represent a Church that has demonstratively been much less than honest and forthcoming about its history and about the true character of its earliest founders and leaders. I have never seen any reason that is even slightly compelling to suppose they are any more likely to be divinely inspired than religious leaders of any other competing and respected, popular religion.

  66. james hafen Reply

    You just posted this, Mike, to get a rise out of us. Right? I mean, I know you didn’t, but hope you did. I just can’t fathom that you think this stuff through, however, and post it not knowing full well how it will be received and the backlash it will generate.

  67. Anonymous Reply

    When I hear a statement that begins with “It’s a common LDS heresy that…” I just do a face-palm. Anyone with a google toolbar can find statements from LDS sources that directly contradicts any other statement from an LDS source.

    I suggest an experiment. Look for your favorite doctrinal belief, the thing that underpins your testimony, if only for the past week or so. You know, the thing you just can’t wait to jump to the pulpit and expound on next F&T meeting.

    Now, here is the hard part. Think critically, just for a moment. Not long enough for Stan to gain a strong foothold in your heart, but just long enough to conjure a doctrinal set of words that will be sufficient for a search engine like google, or even the blessed engine at LDS.org, to retrieve doctrinal statements and quotes from our prophets and apostles (yes, I know, redundant wording).

    Lastly, read carefully. Sadly, you realize your new, favorite doctrinal insight has been declared, soundly, at some point in our convoluted LDS history, to be “LDS heresy”. Some of my favorite heretics were, in order, Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, John Taylor, well, you get my point.

    Anyone game out there? I’ll start.

    Adam/God. BY. Heresy of Adam/God. BRM.

    Next?

  68. Anonymous Reply

    My son is studying D&C and Church history in Seminary this year. I was curious about what he had been taught regarding polygamy and what he thought about it. He had been taught very little, so far, but this statement scared me. Scared the crap out of me, knowing that he is being taught to stop thinking for himself by the religion instructors at school and church.

    He said “My Seminary teacher told us that when God took polygamy off the earth, that he took the ability to understand it away, too. That is why we shouldn’t think about it or “worry” about it. It’s not for us to know.”

    Mind control at it’s Mormon best. My hands are still shaking as I type this.

    • Anonymous Reply

      The thing that continues to stun me is how far some believers will go to justify / maintain belief. It seems that they will bend themselves into whatever pretzel is required, rather than admit, “Maybe I’m wrong.”

      I wish I could find the source…. but some philosopher dude said, “You can’t reason someone out of a position they didn’t reason themselves into.”

      How did your son take that statement from his seminary teacher? Did he buy it?

      • Anonymous Reply

        Yes he bought it, and being a teen he took it on authority over dad’s, of course.

    • Mike Tannehill Reply

      It sounds like his teacher doesent quite understand it, so he dismissed it. True mormonism always encourages us to think, it just wants us to think with a firm understanding of who we are and who God is first. In mormonism you stand on solid ground and operate from that perspective.

  69. James Reply

    On the idea of God being subject to laws vs God creating laws, I’d say McConkie et all are correct (more to come shortly), but on the conclusions they draw from that idea are just emphasizing authoritarian control of the church, and such a conclusion is not justified by the position of God being the creator of laws. The opposite would actually be true. If God is the creator of laws (and not just and adept navigator of those laws), then that means that prophets and the church are among the sources to better understand God, but not the only sources.

    Saying the “Christ followed only laws that had been ordained by the Father” can be interpreted to mean that Christ only concerned himself with a narrow set of knowledge, i.e. religion (I think this is the perspective of McConkie et all), but it can also mean that Christ could have been interested in topics that we call philosophy, science, sociology, mathematics, etc. because they all function within the laws that God set up. I wonder if the authors made this reductive reading by thinking of the term “laws” as a synonym for “commandments.” While McConkie et all and some or even many church authorities may discourage looking to scholarship for gospel knowledge, I think the quoted passage from Mike can be helpful making sense of that error when it asserts that scholarship doesn’t offer salvation. That’s true: scholarship doesn’t offer salvation. But then again, neither do scriptures, prophets, or the church. Christ’s atonement is what offers salvation, and all those things (scholarship included) are simply ways to better understand, contemplate, and access the salvation Christ is offering.

    As far as God and his relation to natural law, the reading of “God would cease to be God” can be interpreted as saying that if God violates natural law, then he will forfeit his status as God. There is, however, another way to see this, namely, that God is saying that he set up certain laws, or if you will, certain realities and if he violates the laws he himself created, then that which defines him would break and he would no longer fit within that which made the articulation of his existence possible. For example, if I define myself as “a runner” and subsequently I lose my legs in an accident, it is not that some external force forbids me to call myself a “runner,” but simply that those characteristics of my identity no longer hold and I must define myself in other terms.

    I don’t think God is saying that he is just a puppet of natural law (which would mean we could possibly circumvent his authority and become masters of nature without God’s help), but rather I think he is saying that he will continue to function within the laws he’s created, because if he changed the rules of the game he would effectively alter his relation to us and the laws, thus rendering him other than what he said he was, or in other words, he would “Cease to be God” both in how he understands his own existence and his relation to the universe.

    And in response to Heather_ME’s first comment: The idea that God created a system that will ultimately screw over most of the earth’s inhabitants doesn’t quite match up with an LDS cosmology for the singular reason that Mormon’s don’t believe in “hell.” Yes, Mormons will talk about “Spirit Prison,” which resembles more traditional Christian notions of hell except for the fact that one, it is only temporary, and two, it is not primarily a place of torture, but a place of learning. After that, Mormons from the very beginning (of course, I’m sure there are contradictions to this statement as there are for most things in the history of Mormon thinking) have consistently made the case that Outer Darkness is for a very select few, meaning that in a Mormon cosmology almost everyone goes to heaven.

    According to the apocryphal statement Joseph Smith made the Wilford Woodruff, “The telestial kingdom is so great, if we knew what it was like we would kill ourselves to get there.” While from the pulpit LDS authorities still like to use sticks as motivators to “be good,” LDS conceptions of eternity reject the sticks and offer only carrots. After all, if you are offered a five-bedroom house on an acre of land with a large pond, how much “suffering” will there be that you didn’t get the mansion on an hundred acres with a lake?

    My point is that while the Celestial Kingdom is presented as being the best, the Telestial Kingdom is in now way a parallel to a hell that Milton and Blake described. So God isn’t actually setting up a system that will fail most people, he has, according to LDS thinking, set up a system that will save almost all people.

    • Mike Tannehill Reply

      Great comments. Thank you James. You said what I wanted to say about God losing himself by breaking laws far better than I did. Very eloquent.

  70. iamse7en Reply

    Never addressed in this by Simon….

    There are huge problems with drawing conclusions from restricted sorts of genetic data. Almost the entire conjectured genetic history published and accepted thus far is based on data derived either from mtDNA (passed only from mother to child, though only daughters pass it to the next generation) or from Y-chromosome (paternally transmitted) genetic material. But these two sources constitute only a minuscule sample, less than 0.01 percent, of the total human genome. An individual’s strictly maternal and strictly paternal lines are just two of a vast number of possible paths back through his or her ancestors. A result of confining studies mostly to the two conveniently accessible sources of gene data has been to ignore the far greater mass of evidence of human ancestry that potentially is, or may eventually become, available beyond the nuclear data. Evidence has also been found that changes in a population’s DNA come about for unknown reasons… I could go on.

    Simon thinks his DNA “evidence” disproves the BoM… that’s completely horse (no pun intended) shit.

    • Matter Unorganized Reply

      Are you a geneticist? A molecular biologist? I’m wondering what your background is. What sources can I look up to corroborate what you are saying? I don’t know squat about this kind of thing, but I found Simon’s book to be well researched and referenced. Of course, I know any science can be presented to support any number of conclusions, so I’m very interested in yours. I would also like it if Simon replied to your post. I would like both sides of this, and any other sides which may not have been explored.

    • mhodger Reply

      You did go on …and on and on. The only Horse patuti is your apologist crap that comes right out of Farms.

        • mhodger Reply

          “facts and reason vs name-calling”? Look again at your last sentence in the original post to which I responded. And another thing. You assert that Simon’s work seeks to “disprove” the BOM. There is no science that can ultimately “disprove” it. But like so many other issues, DNA evidence provides no evidence in support of it when it probably should. The Book of Mormon’s historicity does not fail on DNA alone, but on a plethora of other evidences (and lack thereof) that taken together strain its claim to be of pre columbian origin well past the point of rational credibility.

          And your comment that my posts are “typical” of ex mos is itself an ad hominem attack. In simpler words, you are guilty of the same scurrilous tactics that you ascribe to me.

  71. Natty Reply

    Is Voices collapsing? No new episodes in an awfully long time…. Who wants to be interviewed? I’ve got Skype 😉

    (Just my cheeky way of saying I’m missing Voices)

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