The temple presents the Garden of Eden experience as a basic archetype that underlies human life. The temple–prepare to be shocked–is right. (more…)
When you think about the conditions that make choice meaningful, the need for atonement and the inevitably of damnation both pop out. (more…)
Much of what I have come to know falls into the category of things which cannot be taught but can be learned. Knowledge which is of eternal value comes only through personal prayer and pondering.
-thus Boyd K. Packer (more…)
On Friday night we had a homemade dinner and a movie for our date, the way we do when we’re being cheap. It was delicious. On my plate were T-bone steak, four ears of corn, steamed green beans, and fresh tomato slices. For dessert we had a stack of Reliant and Frontenac grape clusters. I was raving to my wife by way of compliment when I realized that all of this food came from our land. The steak was from my father’s beefs. The corn, the green beans, and the tomatoes had just been picked from my garden. The grapes were from my vines. I don’t say this to brag, but only because bragging is too mild a word. It would be hard to exaggerate how pleased I was and am. I feel pretty frothy about it. (more…)
Aristotle says something interesting about divine free will in Metaphysics (lest you set to much stock by my store of learning, I’m including the full C.S. Lewis text I got it from):
In Metaphysics we learn that the organization of the universe resembles that of a household, in which ‘no one has so little chance to act at random as the free members. For them everything or almost everything proceeds according to a fixed plan.’
It is necessary in the ushering in of the dispensation of the fulness of times . . . that a whole and complete and perfect union, and welding together of dispensations, and keys, and powers, and glories should take place, and be revealed from the days of Adam even to the present time.
These two facts do exist, that there are two spirits, one being more intelligent than the other; there shall be another more intelligent than they; I am the Lord thy God, I am more intelligent than they all.
-thus the Lord your God
There are already entities with vastly greater than human intelligence working on the problem of augmenting their own intelligence. A great many, in fact. We call them corporations. And while we may have a variety of thoughts about them, not one has achieved transcendence.
-thus Ramez Naan, in The Singularity is Further than It Appears
Happiness consists of joy and sorrow, while unhappiness consists of pleasure and misery.
If there is such thing as a gospel aphorism, this would be it, or if Blake wrote Proverbs of Heaven, this would be in it.
When Moses began laying heavy plagues on Egypt, the priests of Pharaoh were able to explain it away, at least at first. This is seen in the Book of Mormon where people begin to explain away the prophecies, as mere guesses. Similarly, we are told that when Christ comes, the sign of his coming will be explained away as merely a comet, planet, etc. This is often seen with respect to miracles and curses.
I never expected to see that excuse making in myself. (more…)
The Great Divorce is a great story. It is not a perfect story. I’m thinking here of the episode of the Dwarf and the Tragedian. Short summary: there is a sinner who uses other people’s pity to manipulate them. His wife descends from Heaven to tell him to repent and be saved. In the process we learn that she doesn’t feel sorry for him any more. She doesn’t even feel sad that he’s damned. In Heaven there is no pity, Lewis says.
The fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil was entropy. Non-entropic conditions were barred by cherubim and a flaming sword. (more…)
FoJG T. Greer has a great post at the Scholar’s Stage on the works on his re-read shelves. You’ll want to check it out, especially his LDS material. He has several conference talks listed that I’m glad he brought to my attention.
Greer suggests that there are three kinds of books on the re-read shelves.
those read again for the sake of “intellectual learning,” as you say it, or perhaps poetically, the books that enlighten;
books reread for purely for amusement or escape, the books that entertain;
and last of all, books that gives us snap shots of the beautiful or sublime, that increase our capacity to feel sorrow for the sorrowful or inspire us to the greater deeds of greater men – or in short, the books that edify.
I think he’s right. The object of this exercise is to share with our friends here or over at Greer’s place the books you re-read,the movies you rewatch, etc., that enlighten or edify. (more…)
[Regular readers know I try to derive sophomoric humor from taking on the character of a lumbering seven-foot-tall asthmatic-villain-American who dresses in black plastic armor and has medical issues. (more…)
I suppose I would be puzzled, too, if I wasn’t LDS.