December 1, 2021

    ***   When I get too sleepy to read while I’m inflight on international trips, which I usually start sleepy because of packing but also because of long lists of last-minute things to do, I watch movies.  It’s a good opportunity to catch up on movies that I haven’t seen and to review movies that I haven’t seen in a long time.  I watched several films on my long recent flights from Salt Lake City to Minneapolis/St. Paul… Read more

December 1, 2021

    ***   Another of Kyler Rasmussen’s Bayesian essays has appeared on the website of the Interpreter Foundation:   “Estimating the Evidence Episode 22: On the Book of Abraham” [Editor’s Note: This is the twenty-second in a series of 23 essays summarizing and evaluating Book of Mormon-related evidence from a Bayesian statistical perspective. See the FAQ at the end of the introductory episode for details on methodology.] It seems unlikely that the Book of Abraham would disagree with what the most… Read more

November 29, 2021

    ***   A long drive today, to and from Alexandria.  We took in the catacombs there, visited the still relatively new Library of Alexandria, and walked around a Greco-Roman theater and its ancient environs.   Founded by Alexander the Great in (as I recall) 332 BC, Alexandria was the capital city of Egypt for approximately nine centuries, and the second city of the Roman Empire for generations.  Indeed, for quite a while it, certainly not Rome, was the… Read more

November 28, 2021

    ***   Today was the last day of our tour.  (We have a supplemental trip to Alexandria tomorrow, but about one third or a half of our group will be heading for home shortly after midnight tonight.)   The ancient and medieval Egyptians didn’t locate their tombs and temples and mosques according to chronological sequence — very thoughtless of them! — so our visit today was dramatically out of order, historically.  We visited one of the oldest surviving… Read more

November 27, 2021

    ***   Having been unable to connect with the web for the past several days, I’m late to call attention to a number of new things that have appeared on the website of the Interpreter Foundation.  But I managed to connect just a few minutes ago, and my success may last as much as three more tension-filled and exciting minutes.  So here, belatedly, are two of those still relatively new items:   Kyler Rasmussen, “Estimating the Evidence Episode… Read more

November 27, 2021

    ***   I’ve found it essentially impossible, over the past few days, to establish a connection to the internet.  But I seem to have one right now, however fleeting it may be, so I’ll try to strike quickly while the iron is hot.  I have to admit that the sporadic access to unreliable internet that I’ve always experienced during recent trips to Egypt — this trip has actually been worse than usual and, accordingly, worse than I had… Read more

November 24, 2021

    ***   As I write, I’m sitting on a balcony aboard our Nile River ship, looking over the major part of the river’s width toward the southwest.  We’re cruising slowly upstream, further into Upper Egypt.  The sun is sinking over the bank to my left.  We’re between Edfu, where we spent the night on board and where we toured the well-preserved temple of Horus this morning, and the temple city of Kom Ombo, where we’ll dock right alongside… Read more

November 21, 2021

    ***   Today was another very good day.  We started off with a visit to the enormous mid-fourteenth-century Mamluk mosque, mausoleum, and madrasa of Sultan Hasan, which has been a favorite of ours since we first lived here in Egypt.  We even had a muezzin demonstrate the adhan or call to prayer in the sultan’s mausoleum, near his empty tomb.  (He disappeared, almost certainly murdered, in 1361.  He was just 27 years old.)   Then we crossed the… Read more

November 20, 2021

    ***   It’s very easy, from this distance in time and place, not only to lose track of what’s happening back closer to home but to fall out of touch with the day and the hour.  So I came very near to neglecting to mention a new article that has appeared in Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship.  This one is by Loren Blake Spendlove:   “Abraham’s Amen and Believing in Christ: Possible Applications in… Read more

November 19, 2021

    ***   My dislike for Aéroport Paris Charles de Gaulle remains strong.  Nothing today has changed that.  Every time I come here, I have a new bad experience.  I’ve missed flights, been yelled at by Air France personnel, and spent hours in what seemed like a oversized sauna.  This time, it was an incredibly crowded, long (two hours, maybe), and chaotic Passport Control.  I’ve never seen it so terribly bad here.  And, of course virtually no signage –… Read more

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