“Premortal Life and Mortal Life: A Fearful Symmetry”

“Premortal Life and Mortal Life: A Fearful Symmetry” March 15, 2024


Wang Yuanqi (Wang Yuan-ch’i), “Free Spirits Among Streams and Mountains” (1684)
(Wikimedia Commons public domain image)

A new article has just been posted on the website of the Interpreter Foundation:  “Premortal Life and Mortal Life: A Fearful Symmetry,” written by Jeffrey M. Bradshaw

Abstract: Bodily weakness, along with the varied circumstances into which we were born, provide the essential initial and ongoing conditions that shape the challenges and opportunities of our mortal probation. In life, we are not expected merely to preserve our innocence in defiance of worldly tendencies, nor are we compelled to cede to cynicism in the face of disheartening earthly experience. Rather, we are meant to follow the Savior in uniting the state of innocence with that of experience, thus joyfully fulfilling the unique mission that has been generously given to each of us.

[Editor’s Note: This essay was adapted and expanded from Jeffrey M. Bradshaw, “Appreciation for Terryl Givens’s ‘When Souls Had Wings’: The Fearful Symmetry of Premortal and Postmortal Life,” From the Desk of Kurt Manwaring (blog), 4 January 2024, https://www.fromthedesk.org/terryl-givens-when-souls-had-wings-book-review/.]

And don’t overlook these recently posted items:

Hugh Nibley Observed: “Graduate School through BYU,” written by his son, Alex Nibley

“So for those of you who are fans and admirers of Hugh Nibley as a scholar, I have to state up front that I am not an expert on Hugh Nibley as a scholar. It’s not an aspect of his personality and his career of which I know much; probably many people here know more about him as a scholar than I do. There are others who have the intellect and the inclination and the interest to cover that topic much better than I, and I would certainly recommend you to my brother-in-law Boyd Petersen’s biography of Dad, as he has very well researched that and writes about it very well.”

Part of our book chapter reprint series, this article originally appeared in Hugh Nibley Observed, edited by Jeffrey M. Bradshaw, Shirley S. Ricks, and Stephen T. Whitlock. For more information, go to https://interpreterfoundation.org/books/hugh-nibley-observed/.

Interpreter Radio Show — March 3, 2024

For the 3 March  2024 episode of the Interpreter Radio Show, Hales Swift and Brent Schmidt and Martin Tanner discussed Come, Follow Me Book of Mormon lesson 13.  These audio tracks are also included in our podcast feed (https://interpreterfoundation.org/feeds/podcast).

The “Book of Mormon in Context” portion of this show, for the Come, Follow Me Book of Mormon lesson 13, will also be posted separately on Tuesday, 19 March 2024.

The Interpreter Radio Show can be heard on Sunday evenings from 7 to 9 PM (MDT), on K-TALK, AM 1640, or you can listen live on the Internet at ktalkmedia.com.

Original air date: March 3, 2024. These recordings have been edited to remove commercial breaks.

Conference Talks: “Strong Like Unto Moses”: The Case for Ancient Roots in the Book of Moses Based on Book of Mormon Usage of Content Apparently from the Brass Plates (2020 Tracing Ancient Threads in the Book of Moses Conference), presented by Noel Reynolds and Jeff Lindsay

Noel Reynolds and Jeff Lindsay spoke at the Tracing Ancient Threads in the Book of Moses Conference on Saturday, September 19, 2020 about “‘Strong Like Unto Moses’: The Case for Ancient Roots in the Book of Moses Based on Book of Mormon Usage of Content Apparently from the Brass Plates.” Their paper discusses research in recent decades that shows the Book of Moses to be more than Joseph Smith’s alleged reworking of Genesis based on his personal views, his nineteenth-century environment, or some prophetic imagination.

All of the conference presentations were filmed, and both video and audio recordings of each presentation are available. Videos, audio recordings and transcripts are available at https://interpreterfoundation.org/conferences/2020-book-of-moses-conference/papers/. The videos are also available on the Interpreter Foundation YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/c/theinterpreterfoundation. A YouTube playlist is also available at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLRMn4gyXMWLv7A618LA-cCvxMqWRk8kxI.

“Mangoes, the Precious Gift that Great Leader Chairman Mao Personally Gave to the Mao Zedong Thought Propaganda Team of Capital Workers & Peasants” (China, 1968)
(Wikimedia Commons public domain image)

It would be difficult to imagine a clearer illustration than this of what free-market economists have been saying, for decades, about minimum wage laws:  “Lyft and Uber to cease operations in Minneapolis after new minimum wage law.”  Raising the minimum wage may allow politicians to feel virtuous but, if it prices lower-end or marginal workers out of the job market, it really doesn’t help the poor or the overall economy.

Wealth is created by labor and capital investment.  It isn’t created by government fiat and it isn’t bestowed ex nihilo by politicians.

There is a point, as every decent Economics 101 class teaches, where supply meets demand and sets a natural price.  Setting a price (whether for a product or for labor) above or below that natural point leads to foreseeable distortions in the economy.  Sometimes I wish that completing a class in basic economics were required in order to run for public office.  Or, at least, a reading of Henry Hazlitt’s classic Economics in One Lesson.

A granary at Salt Lake City's Welfare Square
The grain silo at Salt Lake City’s Church-owned “Welfare Square” could serve as a fitting symbol of the evils wrought by theism and theists worldwide.
(Wikimedia Commons public domain image)

The Christopher Hitchens Memorial “How Religion Poisons Everything” File™ continues to yield theistic horrors that send ardent secularists scurrying for their smelling salts and their safe spaces.  Here, I share merely a quartet of such recent abominations.  There are, alas, many, many more:

“The Church of Jesus Christ Collaborates with Cambodian Government to Open Techo Sen Koh Thom Hospital: One of the Church’s Largest Humanitarian Projects in Asia Set to Serve Over 400,000 People”

“Cambodia’s Kampong Thom Province Celebrates Major Renovation of Three Hospitals: Major upgrades by The Church of Jesus Christ improve health care quality for over 700,000 people in rural Cambodia”

“From Scarcity to Abundance: Community Empowerment and Water Security in Central America: The Church of Jesus Christ and Water for People bring water access and better bathrooms to Honduras, Guatemala”

“More Than 40,000 Vulnerable People Will Receive Adequate and Nutritious Food: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints contributes to the Diakonia Food Bank in Ecuador”

When will this reign of religious terror end?



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