Guest Bloggers

Faith, Philosophy, Scripture: A Typology of Readers

January 5, 2011 | 18 comments
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Faith, Philosophy, Scripture: A Typology of Readers

In the introduction to his Faith, Philosophy, Scripture (Neal A Maxwell Institute, 2010), Jim Faulconer gives us a kind of typology of religious subjects. Imagining the different kinds of responses he might get to the difficulty of his philosophically inclined essays, he picks out four basic types. I. Typology 1. Those who enjoy a kind of childish naivete. Those with childish faith will find what I say difficult because it makes the obvious difficult. They are likely to be bored or, at best, indulgent of me, and their reaction is the right reaction. I have nothing to say to those who are... Read more »

Home Waters: Soul as Watershed

December 8, 2010 | 17 comments
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Home Waters: Soul as Watershed

Spurred by Handley’s Home Waters, I’ve been reading Wallace Stegner. Like Handley, Stegner is interested in the tight twine of body, place, and genealogy that makes a life. On my account, Handley and Stegner share the same thesis: if the body is a river, then the soul is a watershed. Like a shirt pulled off over your head, this thesis leaves the soul inside-out and exposed. You thought your soul was a kernel of atomic interiority, your most secret secret – but shirt in hand, everyone can see your navel. Stegner’s novel, Angle of Repose, opens with the narrator’s own... Read more »

Home Waters: Overview

December 7, 2010 | 4 comments
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Home Waters: Overview

George Handley’s Home Waters: A Year of Recompenses on the Provo River (University of Utah Press, 2010) practices theology like a doctor practices CPR: not as secondhand theory but as a chest-cracking, lung-inflating, life-saving intervention. Home Waters models what, on my account, good theology ought to do: it is experimental, it is grounded in the details of lived experience, and it takes charity – that pure love of Christ – as the only real justification for its having been written. It is not afraid to guess, it is not afraid to question, it is not afraid to cry repentance,... Read more »

Times & Seasons Welcomes Ralph Hancock

June 2, 2010 | 7 comments
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While Rana Lehr-Lehnardt’s guest run continues, Times & Seasons is happy to introduce our next guest blogger, Ralph Hancock. Ralph is a long-time professor of Political Science at Brigham Young University. He is the author of Calvin and the Foundations of Modern Politics, as well as of numerous edited volumes, articles and chapters.  His forthcoming book, The Responsibility of Reason (Rowman & Littlefield),  addresses the meaning and limits of reason through a triangulation involving de Tocqueville, Heidegger and Strauss.   Ralph has also translated three books (including one with his son Nathaniel) and numerous chapters and articles from French, and has... Read more »

Times & Seasons Welcomes Rana Lehr-Lehnardt

May 23, 2010 | 14 comments
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Times & Seasons is happy to introduce our newest guest blogger, Rana Lehr-Lehnardt. Rana is a mother of three who just finished up her first semester teaching at the University of Missouri at Kansas City Law School. After spending several years in the D. C. area, Rana and her family are adjusting to life in Liberty, Missouri where her husband, Mark, has established a corporate and international trade practice. Before finding her way to the University of Missouri, Rana attended law school at BYU, clerked on the Tenth Circuit for Judge Terrence O’Brien, earned an L.L.M. from Columbia Law... Read more »

T&S Introduces Dane Laverty as its Newest Blogger

March 18, 2010 | 5 comments
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Almost two months to the day that we invited him to guest, Dane Laverty has continued to blog with us at a prodigious pace.  We are now happy to report that he is a guest no longer, but will be joining T&S as a full-time blogger. Dane is a resident of Salem, Oregon and Sacramento, California. He graduated from BYU in contemporary dance, supports his family as a computer programmer, and is attending Willamette University as a business student. He is also a prolific reader and — as we have seen — blogger. We certainly look forward to more... Read more »

Letting Go

January 22, 2010 | 6 comments
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Letting Go

Thanks so much for all the fun. Before departing, I leave this layered perspective on parenthood and then return you to your regular T&S, already in progress. Read more »

Sacred Spaces, Holy Ground

January 20, 2010 | 9 comments
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Sacred Spaces, Holy Ground

We, the children of our Heavenly Father, naturally make places where we can draw closer to Him. Almost all of us do it- in some way- all over the world. The thoughts and efforts we put into these holy places reflect our theology, values, hopes and desires. Read more »

Vanity, What Is It Good For?

January 15, 2010 | 82 comments
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Vanity, What Is It Good For?

Several months ago, I temporarily transfered from a place where personal vanity is refreshingly low (Vermont) to a place where it is remarkably high (Northern Virginia) and it has caused me to ponder the following question: is there such a thing as righteous vanity? Read more »

Dinner, Old Testament Style

January 12, 2010 | 19 comments
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Middle Eastern foods are my favorite. So at the risk of totally overstepping the bounds as a T&S guest blogger, I offer the following to enhance one’s study of the Old Testament and further an appreciation of ancient culture. May you have your meal with gladness and health! Read more »

Light Thoughts

January 11, 2010 | 7 comments
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Light Thoughts

Light and shadow are the essence of photography. Where light and shadow are together, there is something to see and an image can be made. These polar opposites make up the visual part of this life; they are both required in order to see anything. Opposites are necessary in order to understand. I believe that most things in life have their opposite. Order and chaos. Gorgeous September days and ice storms in March. Chocolate cake and pickled eggs. Sometimes the opposite of something is not as simple as we were taught when we were young… compassion and hatred are... Read more »

Some Thoughts on How to Approach a New “Place”

July 23, 2009 | 13 comments
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I reside in Alexandria, Virginia, about 10 miles south of Washington, DC.  Read more »

Times & Seasons Welcomes Jayme Blakesley

July 22, 2009 | 5 comments
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Times & Seasons is pleased to welcome our newest guest blogger, Jayme Blakesley. Read more »

Marriage and gender roles

July 18, 2009 | 29 comments
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I suppose we have Mark Sanford to thank for the recent frenzy of articles about marriage (or was it Jon and Kate?). There’s Caitlin Flanagan’s piece in Time, Aaron Traister at Salon.com, the Women’s Day/AOL living survey, Amanda Fortini wondering “why would anyone submit to the doomed delusion that is marriage?” No surprise then that last week, the Church’s Mormon Message was Elder Oaks on divorce. Read more »

The Question of Pacifism

July 17, 2009 | 55 comments
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I’m not, by nature, a pacifist. Read more »

Divide? Maybe not so much — Part 2

July 16, 2009 | 51 comments
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(See my disclaimer in Part 1 concerning the title) So, let’s discuss some of the less-acknowledged ways Mormons and evangelicals are alike. First we’ll start with things in evangelical thought which bear an unexpected resemblance to LDS thought. Read more »

Favorite Lessons from my Favorite (reformed) Harlot

July 13, 2009 | 28 comments
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Incidentally, Jewish tradition lists Rahab the Harlot (of Joshua 2) as one of the four most beautiful women in the Bible. That’s only one of the reasons I like her. Read more »

Worshipping a dead law

July 7, 2009 | 24 comments
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A couple of years ago I got really interested in the Law of Moses. It’s hard to read the scriptures and miss it—particularly the Book of Mormon or the Bible. I can’t help but feel like it was the issue of the day. The thing that, for one reason or another, many members of the ancient Church just couldn’t get their heads around. I can almost see Paul sitting up late at night, rubbing his temples, trying to think of another way to teach that the Law of Moses had been fulfilled, that salvation was—always was—in Christ, that if... Read more »

Grassroots-Style Dispensations

July 7, 2009 | 18 comments
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Are Mormons exclusivists or universalists? Read more »

Faith’s Fear Factor

July 6, 2009 | 42 comments
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I recently had a co-worker ask me how many wives my husband had. “Just one,” I answered. Red-faced, I hurried to explain that Mormons don’t practice polygamy. By the end of our conversation, he looked unconvinced and I felt uncomfortable because I belong to a church outside the mainstream. The innocuous encounter gave rise to one of my least favorite emotions—feeling guilty for feeling embarrassed about the most important thing in my life. Religiosity, I often worry, isn’t chic. Read more »

Times & Seasons Welcomes Rebecca McConkie Smylie

July 6, 2009 | 2 comments
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Times & Seasons is pleased to welcome our newest guest blogger, Ms. Rebecca McConkie Smylie. Read more »

Divide? Maybe not so much — Part 1

July 2, 2009 | 40 comments
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(See my disclaimer about the title) There are many similarities between Mormonism and evangelical Christianity which are generally uncontested by both parties. I thought I would cover these prior to doing a post on the similarities which I suspect will be more controversial. Read more »

What death can teach us about heaven and hell

July 1, 2009 | 35 comments
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People are always making assertions about what heaven must contain in order for it to qualify as heaven for them, some of these assertions being more jokes than anything else. “It’s not heaven without sex.” “It wouldn’t be heaven if isn’t there.” “If heaven doesn’t have Egg McMuffins, I don’t want to go there.” Read more »

Why We’re Confused

June 27, 2009 | 62 comments
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An old adage among outsiders who study Mormonism states that determining what is and is not Mormon doctrine is a lot like trying to nail jello to a wall—except that the latter feat is entirely possible while the former remains a struggle to this day. Evangelicals who interact with Mormons often express frustration to that end. It seems that as soon as we think we’ve figured out what Mormons believe and how to respond to it, the next Mormon we meet will tell us “we don’t believe that,” “that’s not doctrine,” or “that’s just his opinion.” It would probably... Read more »