My COVID-19 reading has been slowed when I lost my commute time, but I did manage to finish David Gore's *Voice of the People*. And what a read! It's a deep-dive into Mosiah 29-Alma 2, the regime change from a reign of kings to a reign of judges. Gore pulls out a lot of timely messages for our own political discourse.
Spencer's "First Nephi" has given me a chance to be reconciled to Nephi, and for that I am grateful. Despite all our efforts to make Nephi a symbol of perfect obedience-- for better or worse-- Spencer shows us a human side of Nephi you may miss otherwise.
A double book review: "Not in God's Name" by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks and "The Book of Lemuel" by Mette Harrison. Both challenge dualistic interpretations of scripture that separate a righteous Us and a wicked Them.
I teach the 16-18 year-old Sunday School class in my ward/congregation, and September begins a discussion on the commandments. I gave a lot of thought on what to share this week, and I decided to do a compare/contrast setup with common secular views of commandments with the religious rationale for commandments. Perhaps I was waning... Continue Reading →
The Prophet is another book I serendipitously stumbled upon, this time through a reference in another book I recently read. The book When Breath Becomes Air is a memoir of a written by a man as he is dying of cancer. The author is a Catholic, and the book reflects at times upon his spiritual... Continue Reading →
Among the many books that Harry Potter recommends in Methods of Rationality, the first one I chose to read was Judgment under uncertainty: Heuristics and biases. It is by no means light reading. Among the selection of journal articles presented, I was reading about a common heuristic (rule of thumb, set of assumptions used to... Continue Reading →
What does your everyday Mormon recall about one of Mormonism's most important founding figures and most colorful characters, Parley P. Pratt? Before reading this book, I couldn't recall an awful lot. I know that his name pops up in the hymnbook a few times. After a quick peek, he wrote a few well-known ones including... Continue Reading →
Isaiah really gets dragged through the mud quite a bit in Mormon culture. In all our new goals to re-read the Book of Mormon, give it a week or two and you will hear things like "I hit the Isaiah chapters, and it's a doozy!" or "I had to skip those Isaiah chapters, or I... Continue Reading →
I'm always grateful for an honest attempt to explain Isaiah to us lay members of the Church. When reading the Book of Mormon, it is made clear that understanding Isaiah is absolutely vital. But the moment we hit 2 Nephi's extensive quoting of Isaiah, we give up. We're caught in this endless conundrum, always feeling... Continue Reading →