An issue that arises in the study of the Mormon thought is the origin of the teaching that our spirits are begotten by God in a literal sense in the premortal world. In this post, I wish to bracket the issue of whether this view can be properly attributed to Joseph Smith. Instead, I’d like to explore our emotive responses to the various perspectives regarding our relationship with God. While arguments based on history or exegesis play an important role in these discussions, it is equally important to acknowledge that these ideas resonate with us at a deeply personal level in different ways.
Recently, I compared two responses, one from David L. Paulsen and the other from Richard Lyman Bushman. These are transcripts from audio so I encourage readers to listen to the original, if possible. Both individuals, I believe, articulate well why a particular aspect holds significance for them. Rather than offer a conclusion, I will let each statement speak for itself. What aspect of personal origins in Mormon thought resonates with you personally?