February 26, 2020

    I published this column in the Provo Daily Herald back on 8 June 1999, or thereabouts:   In 150 years of controversy, battle lines have too often been drawn between agnostic evolutionists, on the one hand, and biblical literalists on the other.  The debate is actually far more complex, and much more interesting. Israeli-American physicist Gerald Schroeder trained at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  His 1997 book, The Science of God, not only seeks to harmonize science and… Read more

February 26, 2020

    Continued from a previous post.   I here offer some further notes from Stephen Cranney, “”Who Is Leaving the Church? Demographic Predictors of Ex-Latter-day Saint Status in the Pew Religious Landscape Survey,” BYU Studies Quarterly 58/1 (2019): 99-108:   Of those in the Pew Religious Landscape Survey — which, please recall, covers the United States of America, not other countries — roughly 18 percent left the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for presumably rather conservative evangelical Protestant denominations…. Read more

February 26, 2020

    It’s increasingly likely that the major-party presidential choice in 2020 will come down to Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders.  I could not possibly be more thrilled to realize that, after all of the expensive sifting of candidates during this round, these are the two best that our republic can propose out of a population of roughly 330 million people.   My low esteem for Mr. Trump, despite the admirable judicial appointments of his administration and despite other policies… Read more

February 25, 2020

    I’ve just finished reading Nina Strochlic, “The Abduction of 276 Nigerian Schoolgirls Outraged the World.  112 Are Still Missing.  The Survivors are Reclaiming Their Future,” National Geographic (March 2020): 84-97.  It’s a reminder of the horrible story that began at about 11:00 PM on 14 April 2014, when truckloads of Islamist militants from the Boko Haram terrorist group invaded the village of Chibok, in northeastern Nigeria.   The Government Secondary School for girls in Chibok had just reopened… Read more

February 25, 2020

    “A man filled with the love of God, is not content with blessing his family alone, but ranges through the whole world, anxious to bless the whole human race.”  (Joseph Smith)   ***   The news offers a plenteous supply just about every day for even the most voracious Christopher Hitchens Memorial “How Religion Poisons Everything” File.  Here are a few recent examples:   “Latter-day Saint Charities Blessed Millions of Lives in 2019: 2019 annual report details the work… Read more

February 25, 2020

    Science & Mormonism Series 1: Cosmos, Earth, and Man LDS Statements on Evolution and the Origin of Man Part of our book chapter reprint series, this article originally appeared in Science & Mormonism Series 1: Cosmos, Earth, and Man (2016). Abstract:This book section is composed of three parts. The first part contains the 1992 BYU packet on evolution and the origin of man that was prepared for distribution to students seeking authoritative answers by the Church on the subject. The second… Read more

February 24, 2020

    Although the Festival’s website hasn’t yet been amended to indicate it, a special closing panel discussion has now been added to the program of the nineteenth annual LDS Film Festival, which is being held throughout this week at the SCERA Center for the Arts in Orem, Utah:   LDS Film Festival 2020   The panel, which will begin at 5:00 PM and last an hour, will focus on the Interpreter Foundation’s forthcoming theatrical film, Witnesses, and on some… Read more

February 24, 2020

    Last Friday marked the 396th consecutive Friday on which the Interpreter Foundation has published at least one new article in Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship.  But the Journal is far from the only thing going on at the Foundation.  Here, for example, are three relatively new items that merit your notice:   Audio Roundtable: Come, Follow Me Book of Mormon Lesson 9 “A Marvelous Work and a Wonder” 2 Nephi 26-30 The panelists for the Interpreter Radio Roundtable… Read more

February 24, 2020

    I’ve begun reading Bruce Rosenblum and Fred Kuttner, Quantum Enigma: Physics Encounters Consciousness, 2d ed. (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2011).  At the time they wrote the book, both Rosenblum and Kuttner were members of the physics faculty at the University of California at Santa Cruz.   On pages 3-4, Professor Rosenblum recounts his experience when, as a young graduate student in physics, he was visiting friends in Princeton in the 1950s and unexpectedly had the… Read more

February 23, 2020

    When the first volume of the new Islamic Translation Series was published in 1997, it included my  “Foreword to the Series,” which appeared for years in every one of the Series publications since that time.  In part, that “Foreword” reads as follows:   Brigham Young University and its Center for the Preservation of Ancient Religious Texts are pleased to sponsor and publish the Islamic Translation Series: Philosophy, Theology, and Mysticism (ITS).  We wish to express our appreciation to… Read more

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