California is very different from Canada, it seems…

So in following some of the press about Proposition 8, I came across THIS STORY which also led me to THIS OTHER STORY.

I don’t recall the LDS church being quite so forceful in defending the traditional definition of marriage in Canada, but they sure are pushing it in California.

Does this say something about how much they pay attention to Canada, or is it just the the ‘States are more important?

Deja Vu

OK. A while back, we talked a bit about Paranormal Activity (still waiting for the one reader to give me feedback on those pics Isent you) but I thought I would take it one step farther and ask what your thoughts are on Deja Vu.

For example, our old Bishop and his wife had a farewell on Saturday night, as they are leaving for a mission. When the person conducting started the proceedings, hubby pokes me, hands me the camera, and asks me to take pictures, as he doesn’t have a clear shot. I take the first shot, and as the flash went off, a “light bulb” moment went off in my head, and I knew I had done this exact thing before.

I was sitting in the front row, had been early as usual, and others had filed in behind me. Without turning around, I knew exactly who would be there and what they would be wearing. The food for the refreshments were in the kitchen. I leaned over at the end and told Keith exactly what would be on that counter and in what order. I told him who was going to come up to him to tell him something important and that at one point, someone was going to try taking the baby out of his arms.

As the evening progressed, everything happened as I told him 2 hours prior.

Explain that if you will.

Horses and Elephants in the Book of Mormon

It doesn’t take long for someone researching Mormonism online to come across websites run by Christians making all sorts of claims to discredit the Book of Mormon. A popular claim is that the Book of Mormon is not true because it mentions such animals as horses and elephants, which is unsupported by concrete archaeological evidence.

I find it odd that Christians would make such claim. Consider Isa. 34:7

>the unicorns shall come down with them, and the bullocks with the bulls; and their land shall be soaked with blood, and their dust made fat with fatness.

So if these Christians can (presumably) support the biblical idea of unicorns ?¢‚Ǩ‚Äù despite the lack of archaeological evidence of their existence ?¢‚Ǩ‚Äù how can they reject a similar claim of actual (if not anachronistic) animals by the Book of Mormon?

How Helaman Got His Name: A Theory

Most Mormons likely know of Helaman, the son of Alma the Younger. He fought with Captain Moroni and led the 2,000 stripling warriors.

But how did he get his name?

One may be tempted to say that his name was just a name his parents liked. But I have a theory. It’s completely speculative, but I thought I would share it anyhow.

First, a bit of genealogy. Helaman was the son of Alma the Younger. Alma the Younger was the son of Alma, a priest of King Noah.

Second, Alma the Elder’s contemporary in Zarahemla was King Mosiah. In fact, their sons spent a lot of time together. I do not think, however, that the five sons hung out together just because they were members of the same church or because they were good friends.

Third, there are roughly 20?¢‚Ǩ‚Äú28 years between when Alma arrived in Zarahemla and Alma the Younger was visited by the angel. In addition, Alma the Elder was likely single when he moved to Zarahemla.

Fourth, King Mosiah’s two brothers were Heloram and Helaman.

Fifth, people in the Book of Mormon are often named after ancestors: Nephi, Lehi, Helaman, Alma, Moroni, Laban, and so forth.

So, here’s my theory.

King Mosiah had at least one sister, whom Alma the Elder married. This made Mosiah and Helaman uncles to Alma the Younger and the sons of Mosiah his cousins. Alma the Younger, therefore, named his eldest son after his uncle.


A Tattooed Bishop

So if a man were to be converted and began attending church with a tattooed neck and two full sleeves of tattoos on his arms what do you think the reaction of *your* ward would be?

What are the chances this man would ever be a bishop in your ward?

This raises the question of to what extent converts are required to conform to the expected opinions of their fellow members. Is this person obliged to get his/her tattoos removed before passing the sacrament, for example?

The sandy soil of reason and logic

From the July 2008 issue of the Ensign, I found something interesting (emphasis mine):

We come to know the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ not simply by the exercise of intellect or the process of logic but by acting on what we learn. Through faith and obedience, the validity of gospel doctrine can be etched upon our hearts.

If our faith is rooted in the sandy soil of reason and logic, it will be swept away by a rising tide driven by the escalating winds of opposition. A faith founded in Jesus Christ and on the rock of revelation will endure through the fiercest storms of life (see Helaman 5:12).

Now, forgive me if I’m wrong, but isn’t the definition of reason and logic that it does not shift like sandy soil? Perhaps he meant, false reason and false logic—but that’s not what he said. What do you think?