God and the Moral Law in Mormonism

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After I wrote a review of The God Who Weeps, a book about Mormonism, I told Mormon readers to feel welcome to guest post to answer some of my questions or to add some clarifications.  (Oh, and meanwhile, Joanne McPortland has also written a review talking about the similarities between Mormonism and Gnosticism).   Over here chez moi, Carl Cranney has stepped up to the challenge. Here's how he introduces himself:Carl Cranney is a Mormon, yet is a PhD student in systematic theology at the C … [Read more...]

Mormon Enthusiasm for the Self-Made Man

god who weeps

I received a free review copy of The God Who Weeps: How Mormonism Makes Sense of Life as part of the Patheos Book Club.I'm glad to have read The God Who Weeps, since, even in the midst of all the Romney controversy, there's been very little discussion of Mormon theology.  Reporters prefer to cover the Temple rituals because they're secret, and therefore must be interesting.  The Book of Mormon musical prompted some error-checking, but not very many details about what would have been the co … [Read more...]

A Mormon Perspective on Interrogating Emotions

It's a guest post by Michael Haycock!  He blogs aperiodically at Not a Tame Lion, and helped clear up factual questions about Romney's priesthood along with more abstract questions about Mormon theology of priesthood the last time he guestblogged here.  Now he's popping in to talk about conversions than win over hearts as well as minds in the light of a recent On the Square piece.It is a typical indictment of Mormon proselytization and practice that it’s all predicated on untrustworthy or … [Read more...]

The Epistemological Weight of Warm Fuzzies

I was reading an On the Square post from a Mormon to Catholic convert and was struck by the way he described his enounter with grace: Early in the evening of May 28, 2010, I am attending Mass in the majestic Basilica di Sant’Apollinare next to the Pontificia Università della Santa Croce in Rome. From Utah I have come as a scholar to deliver a paper at an international conference on the work of the great Catholic philosopher Dietrich von Hildebrand, and I have come as a tourist to see the Et … [Read more...]

The Danger of Cheap Shots

I was chatting with some Catholic friends, and (as happens more and more frequently as the election approaches) the subject of Mormons came up.  Which means you can pretty much set an egg-timer until someone says, "Not to mention magic underwear!"(I think in this case the elapsed time was about a minute thirty.  There's never an egg timer around when you need one.)The 'magic underwear' crack is pretty common (it's the featured visual on the billboards American Atheists are putting up for … [Read more...]

Q&A on Mormon Priesthood (Part 2)

How do I know Michael is a scifi fan, you ask?

Now that Michael's given us an overview of the Mormon priesthood and answered some of my questions about how the priesthood relates to gender and transfiguration of spirit, I think we've all got enough background to go on to weirder and wonkier questions.  Again, my questions are in bold, his answers follow, and he's not to be blamed for the illustrations.Q: At various points in the history of Christianity, monks and ascetics were seen as particularly holy because they withdrew … [Read more...]

Q&A on Mormon Priesthood (Part 1)

As a follow-up to Michael Haycock's clarification of what it means to be a Mormon priest or bishop, I did a two-part Q&A about Mormon theology, hierarchy, and culture. My questions are in bold, his answers follow, and he has no culpability for my choice of pictures.Q: Why is the Melchizedek Priesthood reserved to men? Are there any roles reserved to women? Hoo boy. The first question is a loaded one, because it cuts to the quick of the issue of Mormonism and gender, on which you might … [Read more...]


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