April 9, 2020

      Below, I offer some notes from Carlo Rovelli, Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity, translated by Simon Carnell and Erica Segre (Penguin, 2017), mingled with some comments of my own.  Carlo Rovelli is an Italian theoretical physicist who has worked in both Italy and the United States and who, at least at the time the book was published, was the director of the quantum gravity research group at the Centre de physique… Read more

April 9, 2020

    The announcement of a new temple to be built in the United Arab Emirates is still reverberating magnificently among the small community of Latter-day Saint Arabists and Islamicists.  We were, to put it mildly, both stunned and exuberant.   With his kind permission, I reproduce here a Facebook entry recently posted by my friend and fellow Latter-day Saint Jamal Qureshi:   One of my favorite examples of Islamic architecture and design anywhere in the world. The dome of… Read more

April 9, 2020

    My latest column for the Deseret News:   “Easter’s answer to the ‘terrible question’: One of the most obvious facts facing human beings is the inevitability of death”   ***   New, on the website of the Interpreter Foundation:   Audio Roundtable: Come, Follow Me Book of Mormon Lesson 15 “Filled with Love towards God and All Men” Mosiah 1-3 The discussants in the Interpreter Radio Roundtable for Come, Follow Me Book of Mormon Lesson 15, “Filled with Love towards God… Read more

April 9, 2020

      My wife and I continue to read a passage every night from a volume that we acquired just before Christmas — back in those nearly forgotten days when we humans used to gather together physically in order to socialize — at a book exchange party:  A Year with C. S. Lewis: Daily Readings from His Classic Works.  Here’s the passage, from C. S. Lewis’s famous book The Screwtape Letters, that we read last night.  In it, Screwtape, a… Read more

April 8, 2020

    I base these notes upon John W. Welch, Neal Rappleye, Stephen O. Smoot, David J. Larsen, and Taylor Halverson, eds., Knowing Why: 137 Evidences That the Book of Mormon Is True (American Fork, UT: Covenant Communications, 2017), 180-181:   It’s striking that, according to Joseph Smith, the title page of the Book of Mormon as it currently appears in English is “a literal translation taken from the last leaf of the plates” (emphasis mine).  This seems to be… Read more

April 8, 2020

    I hope that he and “Prager University” won’t mind my stealing the image above and the text below, but I thought that some of my readers might be interested in watching this tonight (Wednesday night) or even in joining in.  I myself have led several Passover Seders for family and friends and ward members over the years, and I find considerable meaning in it.  I wouldn’t be terribly upset if it became something of a common practice for… Read more

April 8, 2020

    I’ve been involved in an exchange over the past couple of days that makes me think it advisable, even urgently necessary, to repost this previous blog entry:   Many people in the West quite confidently discuss Muslim attitudes on the basis of no real acquaintance with either the Islamic world or actual Muslims.   So I’m going to recommend a book:   Several years ago, the Gallup organization undertook an enormous, multi-country survey of the Islamic world, the largest ever… Read more

April 7, 2020

    One of the tasks that I’ve set myself for my COVID-19 house arrest (and, I hope, beyond) is to extract notes from John W. Welch, Neal Rappleye, Stephen O. Smoot, David J. Larsen, and Taylor Halverson, eds., Knowing Why: 137 Evidences That the Book of Mormon Is True (American Fork, UT: Covenant Communications, 2017).  I’ve been delinquent in doing this, but no longer.  Knowing Why is a product of the Interpreter Foundation’s esteemed sister organization, Book of Mormon… Read more

April 7, 2020

    A couple of quotations extracted from Michael Augros, The Immortal in You: How Human Nature is More Than Science Can Say (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2017):   I appreciate it when atheists forthrightly declare the implications of their worldview, without sentimentality.  Here, for example, is the late Cornell historian of science William Provine (1942-2015), a specialist in the development of population genetics and evolutionary theory:   Modern science directly implies that the world is organized strictly in accordance… Read more

April 7, 2020

    Another trio of extracts from Graham E. Fuller, A World Without Islam (New York, Boston, and London: Little, Brown and Company, 2010):   The West, and especially the United States, has shown no serious or sustained interest in the Middle East until the last half century.  We tend to be comfortably ignorant of the history of Western interventionism in the region over centuries — or even over a millennium.  We are only superficially aware of Middle Eastern critiques… Read more

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