Should we drop these doctrinal ideas?

Geoff Johnston, from New Cool Thang, recently suggested in a Nine Moons guest post the following five doctrinal ideas that should be dropped from LDS beliefs.

  1. God exhaustively knows the future.
  2. Our spirits gestated in the womb of a resurrected celestial woman.
  3. This life is our only chance to become at one with God and there is no progression between kingdoms.
  4. The world is coming to an end any day now.
  5. We really understand the atonement.

Do you agree?

For what it‘s worth, we‘ve talked about the first idea several times at Our Thoughts (see here, here, here, and here).

From the Archives: Desirous to see, hear, and know these things

While studying the scriptures tonight, I came across a verse that seemed pretty timely. It’s 1 Ne 10:17 and in it Nephi discusses some thoughts he had following his father sharing the dream of the Tree of Life.

[After] I, Nephi, having heard all the words of my father, concerning the things which he saw in a vision, and also the things which he spake by the power of the Holy Ghost . . . [I] was desirous also that I might see, and hear, and know of these things, by the power of the Holy Ghost

As I sat thinking about this, the recent general conference came to mind. I was left wondering how often — after hearing words from the prophets — I desire to see/hear and know by the Spirit the things they taught.

Read and comment on the full, original post

Why baptism was instituted.

While preparing for my lesson in two weeks, I was reading D&C 128:12:

The ordinance of baptism by water, . . . to be immersed in the water and come forth out of the water is in the likeness of the resurrection of the dead in coming forth out of their graves; hence, this ordinance was instituted to form a relationship with the ordinance of baptism for the dead, being in likeness of the dead.

I found this fascinating.

I have understood for quite some time that the ordinance of baptism helps us connect our decision to start a new, spiritual life  and with the resurrection: a new, physical life.

I have also understood for quite some time that the ordinance of baptism helps us remembers Jesus’s death, burial, and resurrection, which is how we become his spiritually begotten.

But never had I realized that baptism was specifically developed to form a strong connection to baptism of the dead.

What’s health care really like in Canada?

This guest post is provided to you by Johnna Cornett, an Our Thoughts reader living in California. If you’d like to be a guest poster on Our Thoughts, email us at

They’re talking about the Canadian health care system all day long on the radio down here in the United States.


I’m hearing great anecdotes, like that one reason Canada works is that it has fewer people than California, and that someone couldn’t get health insurance in California because her injuries treated for free in Canada (hit by a car while she was on her bicycle) were considered a pre-existing condition in the States.

And I find, I’m really no closer to understanding what the Canadian health care system is really like. On one hand, I’m hearing a lot of stories about waiting four months to see a primary care physician, and long waits to have one’s cancer treated, hospital beds in halls, or 19th-century style 20 beds to a room. On the other hand, I’m hearing about the peace of mind of being able to see a doctor whether you’ve changed jobs, to get health care whether or not you have a pre-existing condition. I’m hearing it’s easier to start a business if healthcare is not one of the overheads.

I had a baby when my husband was between jobs. We lost our COBRA coverage though a paperwork error, and then I couldn’t be insured because I was pregnant. Pretty big consequence for paperwork. So I’ve had a baby on a cash basis, knowing I had no way to cover the expenses if my child was born with any complications. I don’t think I really got what it was like to be uninsured until it happened to me. I don’t think I understood the difficulty of getting insurance once you’re in that class of uninsured. And I thought the health insurance paperwork was bad enough when I was family-of-an-employee.

So, you LDS Canadian insiders, what is it really like getting health care in Canada?

Do you have to be clever at navigating bureaucracy to get care? To see a doctor you respect? It’s not atypical here to have to fight the paperwork fight when your insurance decides something wasn’t covered. What’s the analogy there?

And does the Canadian system have challenges when you’re LDS?

Do they give you a hard time about having lots of children? (Actually, that’s happened to me in California.) Do you worry about resources going to abortions? Is care being withheld from the elderly?

Swearing in the Bloggernacle

I’ve noticed a trend over the last year or so. Granted, this is all anecdotal, so don’t be expecting me to go all Ziff on you with amazing stats and charts. Maybe it’s not actually a trend, but it seems significant enough to have stuck out to me.

There seems to be an increase of swearing in comments, posts and Facebook message from members of the Bloggernacle. It’s usually pretty mild: a hell here, a damn there, and an occasional ass. Mild though it may be, it’s still swearing.

Now before the knots in your knickers get too tight, I’m not passing judgement; I’m not saying whether this swearing (or its increase) is right or wrong. I’m just observing it.

I wonder though at how many of those using such language would do so in a non-Bloggernacle, non-social setting with other Mormons discussing the gospel. Would they say hell while giving a lesson in Relief Society? Would they say damn while commenting in a Gospel Doctrine class? Would they say ass while giving a Sacrament talk?

Maybe they would.

Here I go waxing all anecdotal again, but based on my experience in the Church, very few Mormons swear at Church, and I have attended over 100 wards in Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, and Alberta.

That being said, I did used to have an elders quorum instructor who regularly used hell and damn in his lessons.

Anyhow, I guess the point is this:

  1. If these persons swear in real-life gospel discussions at church, it tears apart what I have come to believe was anorm in the church.
  2. If they don’t, then why do it online? Has the Bloggernacle made us more comfortable in what and how we share?

Saying goodbye to Mormon Doctrine

Matt W. over at New Cool Thang reported that the Church is releasing a new version of Gospel Principles for the priesthood/Relief Society curriculum next year.

I found the following very interesting.

Some statements previously had references on them which no longer appear, notable references to “Discourses of Brigham Young”, and “Mormon Doctrine?” are now missing. (In fact, for those interested, the book no longer has any citations to Mormon Doctrine at all)

Does this mean the Church is trying to wean its members of Mormon Doctrine?