President Brigham Young wrote that we must “struggle, wrestle and strive until the Lord bursts the veil and suffers us to behold his glory, or a portion of it.” Indeed, once the angel has departed, Jacob names the place of conflict “Peniel” or “the face of God”, and explains, “I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved” (Gen. 32:30).

Testimony, Spiritual Experiences, and Truth: A Careful Examination

Apr 12, 15 Testimony, Spiritual Experiences, and Truth: A Careful Examination

Posted by in Featured, Revelation, The Holy ghost

Introduction Do spiritual impressions teach truth? What’s behind a spiritual experience? Testimony, bias, and propaganda Circularities: pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps? Conclusions 1 Introduction 1.1 Know the truth of all things The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that the Holy Ghost is central to...

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I Didn’t Watch General Conference

As a Rational Faiths permablogger I have an assigned date each month for my blog. On this month my assigned date is three days after General Conference. So I knew going in that I would need to watch Conference to have something to write about for my post this month. Based on what I saw I could pick my topic accordingly: what was...

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Spoken of for a Memorial of Her

“Symbolic language conceals certain doctrinal truths from the wicked and thereby protects sacred things from possible ridicule. At the same time, symbols reveal truth to the spiritually alert.” (1) Women are not allowed to preside over the Sacrament; yet the Sacred Feminine is ever-present in the Sacrament itself. You just have to...

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Is Revelation Just Divine Dictation? – The LDS.org Book of Mormon Translation Essay

As part of their “Gospel Topics” essays, the Church released an article on the translation of the Book of Mormon [1]. Some of the controversial topics discused include the use of the “seer stone” vs the “Urim and Thummim” and the use of a hat along with these stones. The most interesting section to me, however, was “The Mechanics...

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Mixed Messages and Missing Doctrine

This post was co-authored by Jake Abhau and Lori Burkman. After having many discussions on the current events and press conferences of late, we wanted to put our thoughts into an essay that describes the lack of clarity on so many things. Where did we come from? Who are we? Why are we here? Where are we going? It’s the set of...

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A Lack of Knowledge

by Michelle Wiener Hosea 4:6 says, “My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge: because thou has rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.” In this verse, Hosea is condemning the Northern Kingdom of Israel for...

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EQ lesson on Race and Priesthood

It has now been a year since the church first released the Gospel Topics essay about race and the priesthood. The following is a transcript of the EQ lesson in my ward on the first Sunday in December. I thought it was a great discussion and is a interesting case study in how such lessons might play out. I’d love to hear your...

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14 Fundamentals in Falsifying the Prophet

A bomb went off in Salt Lake City in the 1980’s. But this bomb wasn’t set by Mark Hofmann. It was set by Ezra Taft Benson, the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. The trigger was his famous speech, The Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophet, which he delivered to a packed house at BYU’s Marriott Center on...

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Christ is Not Leading a Petty Church

There is a common cautionary tale I hear retold within Mormon circles. This tale goes something like this: Once upon a time the LDS Church was going to do something progressive, and amazing. However, these measures were abandoned when some person or group (often unknowingly) decided that they would engage the media regarding a...

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The Answer to All the Hard Questions: Um…Maybe Not.

by Michael Barker The December 2014 issue of the Ensign has an article by R. Val Johnson entitled, “The Answer to All the Hard Questions.”  It’s intended audience seems to be those in faith transition, but the author attempts a reductionistic-like answer to “all the hard questions.”  It’s almost...

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