The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog thread

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Gadianton
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Gadianton »

I think that expecting Mormons to embrace a fictional Book of Mormon is underestimating how much interest the Book of Mormon will lose if it isn't authentic. It's not just that Smith was no Tolstoy. Not even Tolstoy could have cut Borodino.

I assume before you wrote that you at least read some of what I wrote, if not, at least read point 3) above and let me know if you still wouldn't give the Book of Mormon a chance as fiction.

This is one of those topics that spurs immediate reaction with the usual points, but the fiction i have in mind isn't the usual fiction.

I would disagree with you severely if you think a banal message presumed to be ancient automatically has more clout than a banal message presumed to be from the spirit world.
FARMS refuted:

"...supporters of Billy Meier still point to the very clear photos of Pleiadian beam ships flying over his farm. They argue that for the photos to be fakes, we have to believe that a one-armed man who had no knowledge of Photoshop or other digital photography programs could have made such realistic photos and films..." -- D. R. Prothero

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Physics Guy »

An ancient message miraculously delivered by an angel has both ancient and spirit world going for it. If it's a fiction from the spirit world, the people and places in the Book are still made-up details. I think that's a big let-down.

Even a novel by Tolstoy isn't nearly as good with a made-up conflict instead of the real Napoleonic wars. Even a story made up by God isn't as good as an authentic history recording God's direct actions in the real world.

Maybe Mormons will settle for the best they can get. I don't know. But as far as I can tell the main function of the Book of Mormon in Mormonism is to be "a marvelous work and a wonder". Whatever it actually says seems less important than simply holding that status. Inspired fiction, no matter how well inspired, is quite a lot less marvelous and wonderful than miraculously conveyed ancient records.

So for Mormonism to give up the authentic history wouldn't just be switching from high heels to sensible shoes, I think. I bet it would be more like accommodating to life in a wheelchair. You can do it if you have to but it's a really huge deal.

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

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Physics Guy wrote:So for Mormonism to give up the authentic history wouldn't just be switching from high heels to sensible shoes, I think. I bet it would be more like accommodating to life in a wheelchair. You can do it if you have to but it's a really huge deal.

If we were talking about going cold turkey and abandoning a belief in literal Nephites while holding on to Biblical historicty, then you might have a point, but I don't see it happening that way. Yes you might not yet be able to get up in Sunday School these days and declare a belief in a mythical Lehi, but it is possible to express a belief in a mythical Adam, Noah or even Abraham. You will be in the minority, but probably won't get kicked out of class or loose your Temple Recommend. As more and more staunch LDS come to understand that the OT figures are refashoned myths based on stories from older civilizations it will become easier for them to apply that thinking to the New Testament figures also and how they were created. Once it is acceptable to believe in ahistorical OT & New Testament figures then it is much more difficult to maintain a belief in a historical Book of Mormon that requires historical Biblical figures and events like Abraham and the exodus.

So while I don't see an immediate possibility of fictional Book of Mormon narrative from official or mainstream apologetic sources, I do see some movement into the acceptance of the Documentary Hypothesis and the understanding that the New Testament authors probably weren't Jesus' apostles.

Baby steps.
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

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physics guy wrote:An ancient message miraculously delivered by an angel has both ancient and spirit world going for it. If it's a fiction from the spirit world, the people and places in the Book are still made-up details. I think that's a big let-down.

Well, I think we're getting ahead of ourselves because the thread is really about apologist theories and not what the average member thinks. The average member still doesn't realize that the rug was pulled out from them an Lehi is no longer the principle ancestor of the American Indian. So I think those who are in the realm of Interpreter, and especially those following Critical Text and the 15th century stuff, I think those who generally have made the concessions needed to be made to do classic Mopologetics; that there's not going to be much of a let down for them. Well, we shall see, if I'm right, then the apologists will one day advance a fictional Book of Mormon theory and if I'm wrong, they won't.
FARMS refuted:

"...supporters of Billy Meier still point to the very clear photos of Pleiadian beam ships flying over his farm. They argue that for the photos to be fakes, we have to believe that a one-armed man who had no knowledge of Photoshop or other digital photography programs could have made such realistic photos and films..." -- D. R. Prothero

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog thread

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Yes, I think it's important to keep Skousen's work front and center in all of this. The Interpreter Foundation has sunk more than $100,000 into this project. Why? Just because it's "interesting"? Why not throw that sort of money at Lindsey, or Greg Smith? (Do they lack the proper credentials?) Why not give 100K to Gee to up his game on the Book of Abraham? Mormon Interpreter's support of Skousen has to be seen as one of the most significant "investments" they have made, and when you think about it, this is absolutely mind-boggling. They are dropping this sort of coin on a theory that the Book of Mormon was influenced by Elizabethan English *and* it might also have been dictated by a "ghost committee"? But that's not quite accurate, is it? Because the ghost committee thing--if you remember--seemed to be more like a pilot, or a test-run. No one had committed to this in print, as DCP reminded everyone at the time. So why mention something so embarrassing in public? I'm really left with no choice but to believe that they deliberately "leaked" this theory as a means of testing it out. And now it has failed, but they are (again) stuck in this rut and so they are going to continue paying out money to Skousen because they don't want to deal with the criticism associated with abandoning the project. Instead, they'll try to quietly sweep all of it under the rug.

Hence DCP's "witnesses" film, which they are currently advertising in a hardcore fashion, and which they are boasting will easily eclipse the financial support that was forked over for Skousen's "Ghost Committee" lunacy.

So, I think we can definitely agree that the Mopologists are in a kind of "R and D" phase: trying out new ways to re-establish their place in the grand scheme of things.

I do have to ask, though, Dean Robbers: How does this new "witnesses" movie project fit in with your hypotheses about a fictional Book of Mormon?
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Gadianton »

*and* it might also have been dictated by a "ghost committee"? But that's not quite accurate, is it? Because the ghost committee thing-


ghost "committee" could easily become a single "ghost author". I don't think they've backed away from this theory at all. I think they just don't want to deal with the constant heckling from critics. But if the theory ever gains traction with the membership at large, channeling the spirit world will be a big drive for it, IMO.

was influenced by Elizabethan English


I think it's fair to say it *IS* Elizabethan English. It's a 15th century document. As I said earlier, Joseph didn't know what he had, and so he let the language get updated in later editions, and if we had the first edition, it would be 15th century all the way through. Maybe Shakespeare himself was the author?

I do have to ask, though, Dean Robbers: How does this new "witnesses" movie project fit in with your hypotheses about a fictional Book of Mormon?


Boy, do you know how to ask a good a question. The Witnesses film has epic implications. Let me ask you this: Why are they making a multi-million dollar film about Witnesses, rather than about all the great smelting sites for Nephite carbide-infused steel? They're done with archeology and geology, that's why. I get it, that alone doesn't mean they don't believe in a historical Book of Mormon, and in fact right now, they see it as best means to establish it as history. But how tenuous is that? Joseph saw real plates and an angel, and we assume that means the plates are real so the account on the plates is real, but we admit elsewhere that Joseph Smith completely misunderstood all kinds of stuff about his mission (he even let the perfect 15th century English get erased) and also didn't ever read anything off the plates but just a stone. Someday, someone is going to realize that the magical encounter with an angel and gold plates, and channeling from the spirit world can go in a different direction. A direction that avoids matters easily falsified, such as claims about history.
FARMS refuted:

"...supporters of Billy Meier still point to the very clear photos of Pleiadian beam ships flying over his farm. They argue that for the photos to be fakes, we have to believe that a one-armed man who had no knowledge of Photoshop or other digital photography programs could have made such realistic photos and films..." -- D. R. Prothero

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

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Gadianton wrote:For those who believe that God must communicate to man in terms he understands, it's not that God needed to restore treasure seeking, it's that God used the cultural norm of treasure seeking and sent Moroni, along with stage props such as the gold plates, as a "catalyst" -- to enter Joseph Smiths magical world in terms that he understood, and then brought the Book of Mormon forth via word-for-word presentation on the seer stone such that Joseph produced exactly what God wanted him to, while at the same time, acting unwittingly as a "translater"* and wrongfully believing, whether by pious deception by the angel or by his own misinterpretation of what was happening, that the Book of Mormon was actual real history.

It’s threads like this that make me really appreciate this site.

Thanks, Gad.

:: back to reading ::

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

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Doctor Scratch wrote: *and* it might also have been dictated by a "ghost committee"?

Image
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Gadianton »

From the 181 comment T-Rex thread that I'm sure Ballard is learning a lot from:

Gemli wrote:You're the one making the claim that gods and spirits exist. If you can prove it, let's see what you've got


Daniel Peterson wrote:We don't believe that we can prove such things with public evidence. We don't believe that you can disprove such things.


An ongoing battle to get belief safely into the unfalsifiable. A limited geography theory goes a long way but not all the way. Take that last step, Dan, take that last step.
FARMS refuted:

"...supporters of Billy Meier still point to the very clear photos of Pleiadian beam ships flying over his farm. They argue that for the photos to be fakes, we have to believe that a one-armed man who had no knowledge of Photoshop or other digital photography programs could have made such realistic photos and films..." -- D. R. Prothero

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by SteelHead »

Gad, can you provide a link?

Thanks
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

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SteelHead wrote:Gad, can you provide a link?

Thanks

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/danpeters ... ckley.html
FARMS refuted:

"...supporters of Billy Meier still point to the very clear photos of Pleiadian beam ships flying over his farm. They argue that for the photos to be fakes, we have to believe that a one-armed man who had no knowledge of Photoshop or other digital photography programs could have made such realistic photos and films..." -- D. R. Prothero

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

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Gadianton wrote:From the 181 comment T-Rex thread that I'm sure Ballard is learning a lot from:

Gemli wrote:You're the one making the claim that gods and spirits exist. If you can prove it, let's see what you've got


Daniel Peterson wrote:We don't believe that we can prove such things with public evidence. We don't believe that you can disprove such things.


An ongoing battle to get belief safely into the unfalsifiable. A limited geography theory goes a long way but not all the way. Take that last step, Dan, take that last step.


Come on Dan, just put one foot in front of the other:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OORsz2d1H7s
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog thread

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This is an intriguing possibility. What remains to be seen is how the mechanics of this process will be designed. The problem is not only a paucity of original ideas that the apologists face but also that they have no intelligent designers.

Any idea they do come up with is bound to be dumb, but the historicity and the fictional angles are the work of others—if it's not a ghost committee, it's the ghost of Hugh Nibley or the wraiths of post-modernism. But if their lack of even dumb ideas has rendered them less fit for survival as an intellectual species, so little of what they write could survive the natural selection process because they cannot inspire a great writer to join their tribe, and they certainly have none in their little cave.

Before a point of contrast, a prelude: high intelligence clothed in forceful and persuasive verbal expression is unrelated to the dumbness of the idea being expressed in that language by that intelligence. Homo Nibleyensis, like Homo Newtonianus, can believe really dumb things while forcefully, even persuasively, presenting his dumb ideas. A contrast to the current apologists, for example, would be someone like Vine Deloria, the Sioux theologian of native American- Christian pidgin god-talk and sometime law professor of blessed memory whose books are assigned to undergraduates every year in sociology, history, English, and various "studies" courses at preeminent research universities (almost as good as BYU in some cases). In books like Red Earth, White Lies, those undergraduates will read, in the full and protective authority of a secular setting, about what is effectively native creationism, support for Noah's ark (because Sioux myths also contain a flood story!), the presence of elephants in North America, original but wacky ideas about gravity, a young earth, and attacks on "scientism." They will even read a line or two supporting the Mormon claim that natives came in a boat from the land of Jerusalem and before that from Babel in boats tight like unto a dish (the most erotic line in the Book of Mormon, incidentally). The intellectual substance is no better and perhaps worse than what you get from Hugh Nibley (see an example here, starting at 22:40).

Why? In part, some people are afraid to be labelled as racists, because Vine Deloria is Standing Rock Sioux and he's writing about native issues as a native American. Academics are a pretty cowardly bunch anyway—professors have no trouble "speaking truth to power," as they like to say, when that power is the president of the United States on Twitter but not when it's the university president in her office—but many writers far more terrifying than even Vine Deloria or Donald Trump aren't read, even if their ideas are less dumb, so cowardice doesn't explain much. No, it's in no small part because Vine Deloria is a great writer. Dumb ideas came to his head but from his typewriter they took a noble and elegant voice.

I find Gadianton's perspicuity generally unmatched, so I cannot dissent from his prediction without further light and knowledge. It may very well be the apologists who start pushing this inspired fiction theory as a faithful argument, abandoning NHM for what is basically NOM. On the level of ideas, that will be simply intellectual theft, since I doubt they're going to give credit to the people who have been advancing this interpretation for years. On the other hand, I'm not sure anyone will notice. The Book of Mormon as inspired fiction might be less dumb than Book of Mormon as history (I'm not really sure myself), but it is still a dumb idea because, much like the theory of historicity, it sacrifices the liver for the appendix: it confuses almost everything in order to explain one thing. Only a great writer can make this sacrifice seem not merely necessary but even desirable. But in the post-Nibley era, Homo Apologeticus FARMSiensis has yet to evolve beyond the book review into anything resembling literary talent.
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Gadianton »

Thanks for your thoughts Symmachus. I actually have some questions for you (regarding this theory) but I need to get them in a better form before I ask them. It's been a rough week.

This is an intriguing possibility. What remains to be seen is how the mechanics of this process will be designed. The problem is not only a paucity of original ideas that the apologists face but also that they have no intelligent designers.


Well, eh-hem, I don't want to speculate on what the Old Guard is capable or or not, but as it happens to be, I think there is a good chance that they will advance the fictional theory before it hits them that that's what they've done. The many steps they've taken toward the fictional theory have been a result of fighting against the fiction theory tooth and nail. They persecute the fiction theory as did Saul persecute Jesus, and I think we both know what ended up happening to Saul. The apologists have difficulty separating a naturalistic Book of Mormon from a fictional Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon can both be supernatural and fiction. I am not claiming that the apologists will embrace a naturalistic Book of Mormon. I highly doubt they would do that.

To your example, yeah, there's some problems here with the talent pool. I'm sure Smoot's a very bright guy, but he isn't Nibley and certainly isn't this Vine Deloria person you've introduced us to. They really do need someone with some stage presence. Well, DCP is a good speaker and quite charismatic in his own way, but I think what you have in mind is someone who can sell an idea rather than someone who can sell sarcasm.

It may very well be the apologists who start pushing this inspired fiction theory as a faithful argument, abandoning NHM for what is basically NOM.


Well, there is something profound going on here with NHM. It's funny that you mention it because I only realized this in the morning on my morning walk. NHM has become the paradigm example of LGT historicity because it's pretty easy to remember. But if you think about it, it's quite astounding that this is what Hamblin himself tried to convince Phillip Jenkins with. Why did he go the NHM route? Well -- it's an easy one to remember, and the LGT is all but lost knowledge for the apologists. Here you have John Sorenson who wrote two thick books about archeology and the Book of Mormon, and the only thing Hamblin could come up with was NHM? None of his buddies could think of anything else either? There has to be something in "Mormon Codex" that they could have laid on Jenkins. I remember a whole gang of BYU faculty going after Beastie on the topic of smelting (from Sorenson) on MDD. But the apologists don't publish about archeology anymore. Interpreter prints wordprint studies and stuff like that (that just try to show Joseph Smith couldn't have made it up). The frog is boiling, Symmachus, the frog is boiling.
FARMS refuted:

"...supporters of Billy Meier still point to the very clear photos of Pleiadian beam ships flying over his farm. They argue that for the photos to be fakes, we have to believe that a one-armed man who had no knowledge of Photoshop or other digital photography programs could have made such realistic photos and films..." -- D. R. Prothero

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Physics Guy »

Gadianton wrote:Well, I think we're getting ahead of ourselves because the thread is really about apologist theories and not what the average member thinks. The average member still doesn't realize that the rug was pulled out from them and Lehi is no longer the principle ancestor of the American Indian.

I've been assuming that average members were the market that apologists served. It has never seemed to me as though Mormon apologists were even trying to convert non-Mormons, because since they never seemed to recognize that Joseph Smith reeks of con man and the Book of Mormon sounds hokey, they could never meet a non-Mormon at our starting point. So I've been figuring that the apologists' reason for being is to shore up the shelves of Mormon believers who want to stay faithful but are starting to worry.

Have I been wrong about the apologists' target audience? Or is the idea that they'll adopt faithful fiction the idea that they'll give up trying to bolster traditional Mormon belief, and fall back to helping new-order Mormons stay nominally connected to their church?

I get that Mormon apologists have already jettisoned a lot of things that chapel Mormons used to believe. Details about where Zarahemla was, or what became of the Lamanites, don't seem to me to cross the really major red lines, though. Shrinking the Book of Mormon landscape down from the hemisphere to a small patch of jungle may seem drastic, but living in reduced circumstances is still living. Faithful fiction is going gentle into the night.

Even if some prominent apologist does start advocating faithful fiction, I can't think that all Mormon apologists will convert to faithful fiction in a wave. Whoever does advance it will be attacked by all their old-school historicalist peers. It has long been one of the best arguments for historicity, after all, that anything less than historicity is unthinkable.

The faithful fictionists will be assailed on both sides and will have a hard time explaining to either side why anyone should care about their faithfully fictional Book of Mormon. Is anyone really going to be up for that?

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Meadowchik »

Physics Guy wrote:
The faithful fictionists will be assailed on both sides and will have a hard time explaining to either side why anyone should care about their faithfully fictional Book of Mormon. Is anyone really going to be up for that?


Furthermore, what does a fictional Book of Mormon contribute to a person? What does it have of value, and how does any of that value compare to what is available elsewhere, and what is the price of these competing narratives?

What can the "Book of Mormon as special" offer the world beyond saving face to the people who are already deeply invested in it?

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Gadianton »

Physics Guy wrote:I've been assuming that average members were the market that apologists served. It has never seemed to me as though Mormon apologists were even trying to convert non-Mormons, because since they never seemed to recognize that Joseph Smith reeks of con man and the Book of Mormon sounds hokey, they could never meet a non-Mormon at our starting point.


I think your assumption is correct that the FARMS apologists are looking to recruit the average member but they also like to war with people they don't like. They were/are doctrinal police, and efforts include attacking other Mormon writers and scholars who are popular with the average member. More on this shortly.

Physics Guy wrote:Have I been wrong about the apologists' target audience? Or is the idea that they'll adopt faithful fiction the idea that they'll give up trying to bolster traditional Mormon belief, and fall back to helping new-order Mormons stay nominally connected to their church?


I don't think the faithful fiction theory that I'm speculating about would help new-order Mormons, because I see a strong affirmation of the paranormal, for starters. Symmachus brought up an excellent point that there likely isn't anyone in their camp that could make such a view (or any view?) popular with the average member. BUT -- my prediction is that a fictional theory will be advanced. By who? How well received? I'm refraining on speculating on those other things.

Physics Guy wrote:I get that Mormon apologists have already jettisoned a lot of things that chapel Mormons used to believe. Details about where Zarahemla was, or what became of the Lamanites, don't seem to me to cross the really major red lines, though.


For you as an outsider, perhaps it seems that way. I finally, just within the last year, had my first lengthy conversation with a family member (a chess champ among other things) and revealed my clash with the FARMS crowd and this well-meaning relative dismissed my plight because FARMS is apostate and had I encountered the Heartland model instead, perhaps I wouldn't be where I'm at today. It's rather hard to have that kind of conversation and I probably won't do it again for a long time. But for a lot of members, the concessions FARMS demands are significant.

Physics Guy wrote:Faithful fiction is going gentle into the night


Perhaps, but the way I envision it, it's not going to be mere backpedaling or running to safety inside the unfalsifiable. The need for protection is a constant pressure, and part of the puzzle, but I don't think it's enough. After all, the current "postmodern" Maxwell Institute "brackets" geography and focuses on the literary aspects of the Book of Mormon, but still say it's historical. My speculation has nothing to do with postmodernism. Now, I do think the new MI are more susceptible to a fictional Book of Mormon than others, but I also think it's very possible for them to simply go on affirming it happened somewhere while dismissing any attempt to say where. That seems to be the most stable kind of belief here -- affirm it's real history, but don't go down that road a single inch. Well, that in itself, to me, suggests a lack of faith, and potential openness to fiction. But, I think the far greater likelihood is to continue to just say it really happened, or it "probably" really happened but deny knowing anything about how or where and dismiss those who try to explain it as misguided. To make that leap would require something else, I think, it would require a positive element that made the fictional theory compelling in its own right. For now imagine an M. Night Shyamalan plot twist, where suddenly the dots re-align in a way you'd never had expected to, but where the new picture is even more fantastic than the old.

I've written a little bit about how that could happen here, but that's just an example, and incomplete. still working on it.
FARMS refuted:

"...supporters of Billy Meier still point to the very clear photos of Pleiadian beam ships flying over his farm. They argue that for the photos to be fakes, we have to believe that a one-armed man who had no knowledge of Photoshop or other digital photography programs could have made such realistic photos and films..." -- D. R. Prothero

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog thread

Post by Doctor Scratch »

Physics Guy:

Dr. Robbers is absolutely correct about the Mopologists' intended audience: they are not primarily concerned with the average, rank-and-file member. In fact, a very strong case can be made that they regard these LDS with contempt. (Just look at the way they have historically responded to people who react with alarm when they discover, e.g., that Joseph Smith married teenaged girls, or that there is no physical evidence for the historicity of the Book of Mormon, or about the Book of Abraham, etc.). They publicly position themselves as being people whose purpose "is to shore up the shelves of Mormon believers who want to stay faithful but are starting to worry," as you say, but I think that this is mostly for show; or rather, they have to do this because they know/think that the General Authorities view them in that way.

Their actual perceived/desired audience is remarkably complex and contradictory. They *do* want the rank-and-file members (the mythical "Sister in Parowan"), but only as pawns. These people may be acolytes, but it's best if they're dumb and quiet--and, above all, loyal. But bear in mind that this is Mormonism, though: panopticon Mormonism, with a system of internal surveillance that would make Jeremy Bentham blush, so the Mopologists, by default, must regard the Brethren and the system of surveillance as part of their "audience." Meanwhile, most of them are at least marginally academics, and they have the same temptations and human foibles as everyone else, so yet another part of their audience is the wider world: they crave respectability and popularity, even though they are at least smart enough to see how remote that possibility actually is. I admit that this feels tragic in some respects: like these are people who should have known better and who are throwing their lives away. There is a lot of effort made to make it seem as if life is all sunshine and rainbows: loads of vacations and cruises, lots of listening to classical music. Beneath that, though, you can sense a deep abyss of failure. These folks know what "success" looks like, and how most of the world defines it. But it is going to be forever beyond their grasp.

And that, at the end of the day, is why their work seems to be so fundamentally about anger and viciousness and attack. Despite the weird, paradoxical (or very human?) complexities I mentioned above, I think the Mopologists' real audience is one another: they mostly write for other like-minded people, and that's why the ugliness keeps getting perpetuated. What the Dean is saying about a fictional Book of Mormon would just be another way that the Mopologists would try to "assert their suzerainty" amidst this very complicated socio-political situation.
"[I]f, while hoping that everybody else will be honest and so forth, I can personally prosper through unethical and immoral acts without being detected and without risk, why should I not?." --Daniel Peterson, 6/4/14

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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by NorthboundZax »

Meadowchik wrote:
Furthermore, what does a fictional Book of Mormon contribute to a person? What does it have of value, and how does any of that value compare to what is available elsewhere, and what is the price of these competing narratives?

What can the "Book of Mormon as special" offer the world beyond saving face to the people who are already deeply invested in it?


I think it is worth asking this question about Job. A lot of people (LDS and other Christians) find value in the book while not believing it is literal history. If that can be scriptural fiction with value, I fail to see why the Book of Mormon can't have the same kind of stature.

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tapirrider
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by tapirrider »

Gadianton wrote:this well-meaning relative dismissed my plight because FARMS is apostate and had I encountered the Heartland model instead, perhaps I wouldn't be where I'm at today.


I've been through that too. Seems that members of the church are dividing against each other.

Meadowchik
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Re: The official, faithful fiction Book of Mormon Watchdog t

Post by Meadowchik »

NorthboundZax wrote:
Meadowchik wrote:
Furthermore, what does a fictional Book of Mormon contribute to a person? What does it have of value, and how does any of that value compare to what is available elsewhere, and what is the price of these competing narratives?

What can the "Book of Mormon as special" offer the world beyond saving face to the people who are already deeply invested in it?


I think it is worth asking this question about Job. A lot of people (LDS and other Christians) find value in the book while not believing it is literal history. If that can be scriptural fiction with value, I fail to see why the Book of Mormon can't have the same kind of stature.


Without agreeing on the value of Job, I will say that, as a story, it can have philosophical value much more important than the Book of Mormon. Of course the Book of Mormon, like any writing, could have philosophical insight, so the question is, what philosophical insight does it indeed offer the world?

So, what is it, NorthboundZax? You have my attention.

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