More Islands and Atolls

Post-Mission, Not My Baby Anymore @ Segullah
  -  I sobbed after dropping of my son at the MTC in July of 2017. I was not just grieving his...

Royal Skousen's Interesting Theory on the Book of Abraham and Its Relationship to the Papyri @ Mormanity
  -  A reader raised an interesting question after reading Dr. Royal Skousen's C.V. at BYU,...

Taking the Name of God in Vain? @ Segullah
  -  I was brought up to never, ever “take the Lord’s name in vain.” As a kid growing up...

Book Review: I Gave Her a Name @ Segullah
  -  Heather Harris Bergevin hates long walks on the beach, and the saccharine sweet fake...

Theological Twinkies and our Spiritual Diet @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  The scriptures contain a number of food metaphors. I’ve been working for a few...

Toni Morrison’s Writing and Listening When Others Speak @ Segullah
  -  Writing in the wake of Toni Morrison’s passing on Monday, August 5, 2019 is a daunting...

Home Bittersweet Home @ Segullah
  -  Recently my two sisters and a niece – all from the Midwest – were with me at my...

When your husband gets a shout out from Kim Kardashian @ Segullah
  -  So, I guess Kim Kardashian is going to law school. Or, doing a law school internship...

The Antiquated Second Amendment @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  One of the most confusing, misunderstood, and misapplied pieces of the Constitution is...

One True Thing @ Segullah
  -  I sat in the living room with the window open trying to cool off after Sunday dinner....

Ignoring Christian Refugees from Iraq @ Mormanity
  -  While many people seem to think that the US has liberated Iraq, first from Saddam Hussein...

Honour Thy Launching Children @ Segullah
  -  My son’s return ticket was booked. He was coming home from his mission soon, so he...

Ifs, Ands, or Buts: A Reminder on the Origins of the Book of Mormon @ Mormanity
  -  In a past Maxwell Institute publication, Daniel Peterson made a great point about the...

We Are Never, Ever, Ever Gonna Get a Pet (er) @ Segullah
  -  I find myself drawn to pictures of puppies lately. My friends get puppies and post...

Most Viewed Conference Talks on YouTube (Part 2) @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  A few weeks ago, I posted about the most viewed General Conference talks on YouTube. In...

Covenant and law, grace, works, and faith. @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  I’ve updated this post with a new section and handout, after the overview. It...

Welcome to My Home @ Segullah
  -  Yesterday I wasn’t feeling well and spent most of the day binge-watching the latest...

A Few Reasons Why Hugh Nibley Is Still Relevant for Book of Abraham Scholarship @ Mormanity
  -  I'm grateful to the Interpreter Foundation for publishing my lengthy, controversial, and...

The Twin BOA Manuscripts: A Window into Creation of the Grammar and Alphabet of the Egyptian Language? @ Mormanity
  -  While I believe there is significant evidence showing that the twin manuscripts...

Some Thoughts on the Mueller Report @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  It took me a while, but as of Friday I can say—unlike most Americans and unlike 99...

The Book of Mormon Critical Text Project @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  One of the interesting aspects of my job is that I am the primary proofreader for Royal...

Kirtland's Rosetta Stone? The Importance of Word Order in the "Egyptian" of the Grammar and Alphabet of the Egyptian Language @ Mormanity
  -  There may be an important story hidden in one of the easily-overlooked details in the...

Most Viewed Conference Talks on YouTube (Part 1) @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  What are the most liked General Conference talks? I wrote a post a few years ago where I...

The Twin Book of Abraham Manuscripts: Do They Reflect Live Translation Produced by Joseph Smith, or Were They Copied From an Existing Document? @ Mormanity
  -  A number of critics of the Book of Abraham and even some LDS scholars have alleged that a...

R-E-S-P-E-C-T! Find out what it means to President Nelson! @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  In April Conference, President Nelson said the following to the men and boys in...

The New Hauglid and Jensen Podcast from the Maxwell Institute: A Window into the Personal Views of the Editors of the JSP Volume on the Book of Abraham @ Mormanity
  -  The Maxwell Institute recently revamped their website after roughly a week of downtime,...

Romanticized Notions @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  One morning in the spring of 2005, when I was a senior editor at the Ensign, the new...

Lost Treasures from the Maxwell Institute? @ Mormanity
  -  I noted with some anxiety last week that my many hundreds of links to archived articles,...

Beatles Songs, Mormonized @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  At the Sunstone Symposium this year, Todd Compton, Harold Peterson, and Clair Von Barrus...

BYU: A Beautiful Solution for the Needs of Many Families and Students in China @ Mormanity
  -  I've come back to Utah for a few weeks to start an exciting and challenging new job....

Update on Inspiration for W.W. Phelps' Use of an Archaic Hebrew Letter Beth for #2 in the Egyptian Counting Document @ Mormanity
  -  I previously noted that one of the Hebrew books Oliver Cowdery brought to Kirtland, Ohio...

13 Years of Ziff @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  Note: This post is straight-up navel gazing. Consider yourself warned. This month marks...

News! @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  It’s been a long several months. I have passed my written and oral exams, and am on...

Mitt and Me @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  Last week we were in San Diego for a little vacation. On Sunday (June 2), we attended...

Inspired by Utah: A Warm and Encouraging Welcome for My Temporary Return @ Mormanity
  -  I've been in Salt Lake City, Utah for a few days as part of my transition to an exciting...

More Connections Between the Kirtland Egyptian Papers and Prior Documents @ Mormanity
  -  In a previous post, I discussed William Schryver's 2010 presentation that pointed out...

How to Make a Chinese Woman Cry (Please Try This!) @ Mormanity
  -  Last night my wife and I had the pleasure of speaking with a large group of students...

Two Songs I Hope Don’t Make It into the Children’s Songbook @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  Chad Nielsen’s recent post at T&S on updates on the hymn book revision process...

He Whose Name Cannot Be Spoken: Hugh Nibley @ Mormanity
  -  Whether you agree with Hugh Nibley or not, those doing research on the Book of Abraham...

De Facto Infallibility and the Difficulty of Deciphering Spiritual Manifestations @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  The reversal of the POX has highlighted a growing problem for the Church. Church leaders...

More on the Impact of Hebrew Study on the Kirtland Egyptian Papers: Hurwitz and Some Curiousities in the GAEL @ Mormanity
  -  One of the many strange things in W.W. Phelps' Grammar and Alphabet of the Egyptian...

(Tinkering Intensifies) @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  When my sisters and friends started ZD way back during the Hinckley administration, I had...

John Hajicek on the Hidden Sacrifices Behind the Printing of the Book of Mormon @ Mormanity
  -  One of the really remarkable friends of the Church is John Hajicek (pronounced...

A Parable @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  A distinguished professor has a son who gets accepted to a prestigious university on the...

Egyptomania and Ohio: Thoughts on a Lecture from Terryl Givens and a Questionable Statement in the Joseph Smith Papers, Vol. 4 @ Mormanity
  -  In a lecture I heard from Terryl Givens, one of my favorite LDS writers and thinkers, I...

Moses Stuart or Joshua Seixas? Exploring the Influence of Hebrew Study on the Grammar and Alphabet of the Egyptian Language @ Mormanity
  -  Update, June 16, 2019: After searching in many places (Hebrew texts, Masonic literature,...

Sights from a Trip to Israel and Jordan @ Mormanity
  -  One of the advantages of working in China is having long national holidays like the...

A Look at Crisis Text Line Data on LGBT Issues and Suicidality @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  Crisis Text Line is a support service for people in crisis. It’s like a suicide...

Dwelling in Righteousness with No Poor among Us @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  So, I led a discussion on Sunday using the questions I listed in the last post as a...

Two Important, Even Troubling, Clues About Dating from W.W. Phelps' Notebook with Egyptian "Translation" @ Mormanity
  -  Update, May 3, 2019, and more on May 8, 2019: In yet another frustrating turn as I...

Digging into the Phelps "Translation" of Egyptian: Textual Evidence That Phelps Recognized That Three Lines of Egyptian Yielded About Four Lines of English @ Mormanity
  -  Update, April 30, 2019: Today I noticed there is another document from Oliver Cowdery...

Praying Like a Mormon @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  I’m in something called Education for Ministry, which is a four-year program run by the...

Joseph Smith and Champollion: Could He Have Known of the Phonetic Nature of Egyptian Before He Began Translating the Book of Abraham? @ Mormanity
  -  The Rosetta Stone was discovered in 1799. While Thomas Young and other scholars studied...

John 8 and the Woman Taken in Adultery: A Faith Promoting Fabrication? @ Mormanity
  -  For years I've had a question mark in my mind over John 8:1-11 with its beautiful and...

Wrong Again, In Part! How I Misunderstood the Plainly Visible Evidence on the W.W. Phelps Letter with Egyptian "Translation" @ Mormanity
  -  Update, April 23, 2019: Doubly wrong! When I wrote this post earlier today, I was...

And It Was Night @ Zelophehad's Daughters
  -  “So, after receiving the piece of bread, he immediately went out. And it was...

One Heart and One Mind @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  The ward I work with on the high council is having ward conference in a couple of weeks,...

Misinformation and Fearmongering @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  Because the Democrats are proposing to actually do something about global warming, health...

On Hiatus until June @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  “I confess that I am constantly appalled by the scarcity of my knowledge, and the...

Excerpts from Bruder: The Perplexingly Spiritual Life and Not Entirely Unexpected Death of a Mormon Missionary @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  As I mentioned in my last post, BCC Press has recently released a rather unusual mission...

Mission Memoir, Ultimate Tourney, and Other Random Stuff @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  It’s been a while since I posted anything. I’ll explain that in a minute, but first a...

Pyrric Victories @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  JSTOR on Pyrric victories and the origin of the term.

Jerusalem’s Economy in Second Temple Period @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  I’ve always had the assumption that the Jerusalem region was fairly poor — perhaps...

Chris on Religious Evolution @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  Chris Goble has an interesting Twitter thread on the emergence of monotheism in axial...

Getting the Blog Back Together @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  I’ve been posting regularly at Times and Seasons and plan on continuing with that....

News and updates! @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  First, I am actively looking to relocate my blog away from Patheos. I’ve decided...

A Sacrament Meeting Sermon on Forgiveness @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  We’re in a new ward, and with the new meeting changes, talks sermons are assigned...

NT Gospel Doctrine Lesson 3: Luke 2, Matthew 2 @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  Arvo Pärt’s Nunc Dimittis, the Latin text of Luke 2:29-32, “Now...

NT Gospel Doctrine Lesson 2: Matthew 1, Luke 1 @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  Arvo Pärt’s magnificent Magnificat, one of many songs based on the Latin...

Brief NT Introduction and Gospel Doctrine Lesson 1: John 1:1-14, Isa 61:1-3, JST Luke 3:4-11 @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  Let’s start the new year by reminding ourselves how little we know, with a brief...

Moth and Rust and Pulmonary Hypertension @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  I’m a big fan of book reviews. We publish them in each issue of BYU Studies Quarterly,...

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Resources, Part 3: Everything Else @ Benjamin the Scribe
  -  (Post 1, post 2) I’ve decided to gather together my other recommendations into one...

Changing Political Parties @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  As should be clear to anyone who has been reading this blog, I am a Democrat. But I used...

"What Is Heaven Like?" @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  In the First Presidency’s Christmas Devotional earlier this month, President Nelson...

The Trouble with Tax Cuts @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  Everybody likes tax cuts. What’s not to like? But there is a proper time for tax cuts,...

The Moral Obligation of Latter-day Saint Voters @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  This year is an important year for Latter-day Saint voters, the large majority of whom...

“Too Frequent Repetition of His Name” @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  In the ongoing discussion regarding President Nelson’s instruction to use the full name...

To the People Defending the Church’s Decision to Ditch the “Mormon” Nickname @ Peculiar People
  -  First, I want you to know that I respect your decision to call yourself something other...

The Women Who Enable Abusive Men @ Peculiar People
  -  After the Kavanaugh hearing last Thursday, an image went viral that depicted a row of...

“What Boy Hasn’t Done This in High School?” Brett Kavanaugh and the Rotten Goose Egg Party at Oaklawn Park @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  Failed Florida congressional candidate Gina Sosa is probably looking for a rock to hide...

Joseph, Potiphar’s Wife, and the Truth about False Allegations @ Peculiar People
  -    In response to multiple allegations of sexual misconduct against Brett Kavanaugh,...

Robert Kirby and Edgy Mormon Men @ Peculiar People
  -  Like many progressive Mormons, I’ve enjoyed Robert Kirby’s self-deprecating...

To the Men Who Grabbed McKenna Denson and Dragged her away from the Pulpit @ Peculiar People
  -  To the men who grabbed McKenna Denson without her consent and dragged her away from the...

Why Would a Feminist Keep her Father’s Name? @ Peculiar People
  -    Back in April I wrote about my experience with software systems and institutions...

The Truth, the Whole Truth, and Nothing but the Truth @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  By now, Rudy Giuliani’s infamous declaration to NBC’s Chuck Todd (“Truth isn’t...

Mormon: The New Shibboleth @ Peculiar People
  -  Here’s hoping Lindsey releases a new, revised video: I’m a member of Church...

Sorry to Bother You: The (Human) Body as Technology @ Peculiar People
  -  This review contains major spoilers for Boots Riley’s 2018 film Sorry to Bother You....

Do Married Mormon Men Understand Consent? @ Peculiar People
  -    Image obtained through creative commons. I was 28 years old when I got married...

$2,200 for a Screwdriver, and the Military Didn’t Buy It @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  Well, it has been an interesting summer, to say the least. On Memorial Day, I was playing...

Economic Insanity: Chapter 8 (part 2) @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  Competition Restrained by a Higher Good (Part 2)Who Really Believes in Unfettered...

Economic Insanity: Chapter 8 (part 1) @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  Competition Restrained By a Higher Good (Part 1)The fundamental question of management...

Remembering June 9, 1978 @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  In honor of the fortieth anniversary of the announcement of the revelation that ended one...

Economic Insanity: Chapter 7 (part 2) @ Mormonomics & Mormonethics
  -  A Nation of Owners (Part 2)The Federal ModelEach responsible citizen in the United States...

Making Ministering Holy @ Peculiar People
  -  My priesthood lesson prompt was very open-ended: “ministering.” My mind leapt to the...

What Will Combined MP Quorums Mean? @ Small and Simple
  -  In a shocking announcement during the Priesthood Session of the 2018 March/April General...

How Can Anyone Remain a Mormon in the Face of All the “Facts”? @ Small and Simple
  -  One of the things that you will see sometimes in anti-Mormon forums is what appears to be...

About That Taylor Christensen Video @ Small and Simple
  -  There is a video making the Mormon facebook circuit by Taylor Christensen.  He starts...

The New York Times Thomas Monson Obituary and Fake News @ Small and Simple
  -  The president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints recently died, and the...

Perfect College Football Playoff System: 2017 Version @ Small and Simple
  -  Several years ago I published to the world the perfect college football playoff system. ...

Moderate Worship Losing Ground @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  While it’s not really new news, Sociological Science had an interesting story on how...

Philosophy, Science and Religion: The Divine Hiddenness Argument @ Small and Simple
  -  The fourth week of the Coursera course on Philosophy, Science and Religion focuses on the...

Philosophy, Science and Religion: Friendly Disagreement, Testimonial Knowledge, and the Importance of Fellowship @ Small and Simple
  -  The third week of the Coursera course on Philosophy, Science and Religion addresses...

Philosophy, Science and Religion: The Conflict Between Science and Religion @ Small and Simple
  -  In the second week of the Coursera course on Philosophy, Science and Religion, professor...

Philosophy, Science and Religion: The Mind and The Religious Experience @ Small and Simple
  -  I am taking an online course through Coursera on Philosophy, Science and Religion.  In...

Testimony and the Spiritual Experience @ Small and Simple
  -  I was raised in the religious tradition of my parents, which happens to be The Church of...

Bows, Arrows & the Book of Mormon @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  This is just a “holder” post for a discussion I was having over whether...

Salvation in Mormonism @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  Robert at Scriptural Mormonism does a good job discussing the place of grace in “old...

Terryl Givens on Mormons at the Forefront @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  Terryl Givens has up an essay at First Things called “Mormons at the Forefront.”...

God and Evolutionary Psychology @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -  Evolutionary psychology suggests God makes more sense than not. I’m not sure he sees...

PEL on Scientism @ Mormon Metaphysics
  -   “…[scientism] is contributing to a growing trend on the left, quite as ferocious...