Category Archives: Personal Issues

Creating a World Without Poverty: Muhammad Yunus

In a speech titled “Becoming Self-Reliant—Spiritually and Physically” in the March 2009 Ensign, Elder M. Russel Ballard makes the following comment about economist Muhammad Yunus:

“…we need to appraise our own lives. How well are we listening to the Spirit? Are we living according to the eternal truths and doctrines of the restored Church of Jesus Christ? Can we effectively appraise the needs of others by the prompting of the Spirit? It impressed me that Muhammad Yunus must have been prompted by the Spirit when he organized a very unusual bank in Bangladesh, which some have said was the beginning of microfinance. When Yunus, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 for his efforts to help the poor, was asked what his initial strategy would be, he responded:
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Filed under Personal Issues, Political Philosophy, Politics

The Always Placid Mormons

…is how we are described by the Catholic blogger who writes as “The Anchoress.” I read her pretty much daily. On the whole, she’s usually a refreshing combination of entertainment, spiritual insight, and wisdom. My kinda person, and especially so since I teach from within her tradition.

It’s always interesting to find out how you’re viewed by others. And I don’t mind being “always placid.” If, through this Proposition 8 tempest, one of the labels that sticks to us is “placid,” it won’t be such a bad thing.

In fact, I could go for the placid thing on my tombstone: Here lies Mogget, usually reasonably placid unless you get frisky with the 2nd Amendment or you proof text from the Bible…

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Filed under Marginalia, Personal Issues

No Time

The 20th comment on David Clark’s “Mormon Anxieties” post comments that the request to support a “yes” on Proposition 8 was “time sensitive.” After comparing this to President Hinckley’s recent directive to read the BoM before the beginning of the year, this same author writes “we didn’t have the luxury of weeks and months to ‘gain a testimony’ of it.”

There are instances where we must react based without detailed thought. For example, those who use firearms regularly in their line of work rely on decisions made earlier, in more leisurely moments, about how they will react under certain legal conditions and circumstances. But moral-political propositions presented for a vote with an understanding that there is insufficient time to seek genuine spiritual confirmation seem to me to be similar to $700 B bailouts for which we likewise somehow lack the time for public debate. Katy. Bar. The. Door.

Like David, I am not going to open a debate on the Prop. 8 issue. But I am interested in the idea that there might be circumstances in which we should act without spiritual confirmation on some major political or moral decision. This does not seem likely to me, because the LDS lifestyle seems to be full of at least anecdotal evidence of major life changes made on the basis of rather sudden spiritual inspiration. I am, however, open to learning more from those who have given it some thought.

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Filed under Marginalia, Personal Issues, Speculation

Chris H. is moving to….

…his own blog. 

I have enjoyed my almost three years here at FPR. But it is time for me to move on. I will be writing about politics and political philosophy with a Mormon and leftist twist now at Approaching Justice (approachingjustice.wordpress.com).

 

It is not polished yet, but my personal favorite posts from FPR are now at Approaching Justice and here at FPR as well. Hopefully, I will have it up and running soon.

 

I would like to thank John C./HP for the opportunity to blog here and get some (negative and positive) attention on the bloggernacle.

 

It was fun getting to meet Mogget, David J., and LxxLuthor in the early days. It has also been a joy getting to know TT, Smallaxe, and Jupiterchild a bit. All of these people are far smarter than me, and I appreciate their patience. It is funny how these people seem like friends even though I have not met any of them (except John C.) and likely never will.

It has been fun.

 

 

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Filed under Marginalia, Personal Issues

Been Sittin’ On My Butt…

The first words of his testimony today were “Been sittin’ on my butt at home for the last six months so I thought I ought to at least give up smoking.” He said he hadn’t been at church during that time like he ought to, “prolly because the fish were biting and the ducks were flying.” And finally he allowed as how, after fifteen or so years, he’d started to feel like he was finally good enough to join the rest of us.

Pretty strong stuff, you know?
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Filed under Marginalia, Personal Issues

Get Thee to a Grad School

In recent weeks both TT and Chris have each made controversial posts. By this I mean no criticism, but simply that each has created entries on “hot” issues that invite responses from a wide variety of readers. I could tell from reading the responses that many folks had spent a great deal of time thinking about these issues. All in all, I have really enjoyed those threads.

But alas, I am Mogget the Bible dork and teacher. And the teacher in me also noticed quite a spread in the level of the arguments. I am not talking about who is right or wrong, but a matter of how each writer “sold” his or her ideas. For example, when it comes to time to take account of feelings, those who have experienced something have a natural lead. And in talking about the legal aspects we accord those with the appropriate credentials some respect. These are all issues of credibility.

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Filed under Marginalia, Personal Issues

The Church and the Conversion Experience

Some time ago someone made a comment on one of our threads characterizing the LDS notion of revelation as a “hot sensation brought on by emotionally charged media.” In regard to the role of revelation in the conversion experience, the writer also felt “challenged” by the need to explain the revelatory experience to an investigator because he or she had “expected divine communication to be more clear.”

I share the writer’s distaste for the maudlin and sentimental in media, from which I protect myself via the “off” button. The remainder of the critique, however, is less than compelling. The key to the writer’s anxieties and discomfort probably lies within his or her expectations. If I had to guess, I’d say that those expectations were forged almost completely by interaction with the BoM and perhaps the surviving popular accounts of early LDS experiences.

The LDS conversion paradigm, however, is grounded in the NT conversion experience and the NT idea of what is communicated during conversion. Conversion events in the NT are emotional but they do not tail off into emotional incoherence. Instead, these experiences lead to behaviors that form and shape the community into the body of Christ. Missionaries are uniquely qualified for their role in bringing the conversion event to culmination.

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Filed under Bible, Personal Issues