This political season is a good time to remember the contents of an 1839 letter that Joseph signed as co-author and personally edited:
We ought always to be aware of those prejudices which sometimes so strongly present themselves and are so congenial to human nature against our neighbors, friends, and brethren of the world who choose to differ with us in opinion and in matters of faith.
Our religion is between us and our God. Their religion is between them and their God.
There is a tie from God that should be exercised toward those of our faith who walk uprightly. . ..
It is without prejudice, but gives scope to the mind, which enables us to conduct ourselves with greater liberality toward all others that are not of our faith than what they exercise toward one another. These principles approximate nearer to the mind of God because they are like God or godlike.
Those who read my blogs know that I have great respect and fondness for the members of the M2C citation cartel. All those I've met are great people, sincere, dedicated, smart, etc.
While I disagree with their interpretations of the text and the relevant extrinsic evidence, it doesn't bother me in the least that other people have different opinions. I object strongly to their policy of censorship of alternative ideas, but none of these differences are personal. I'm happy to associate with and interact with anyone despite disagreements about any particular issues.
Unlike some of my critics, I don't resort to name-calling, accusations of apostasy, etc. Such logical fallacies reflect their insecurity about their opinions and are easily ignored anyway.
For those who are serious about these topics, many differences of opinion arise from a simple difference of perspective. Once we understand this it is easy to have unity of purpose simultaneously with diversity of thought.
Everything you see, hear and know is based on a subjective perspective.
It is all relative to where you stand.
One highly significant difference of perspective involves the Book of Mormon Central logo, which is the old logo from F.A.R.M.S.
For some people, this logo represents outstanding, brilliant scholarship. Even the Maxwell Institute, for a time, used a modified version of the logo.
For others (such as me) it represents completely closed minds and bias confirmation presented in the guise of scholarship.
This logo literally teaches that the Book of Mormon is a Mayan Codex (i.e., Mormon's Codex, which M2C believers hold out as the "high-water mark of scholarship on the Book of Mormon").
This logo teaches that the "real Cumorah" is in southern Mexico.
This logo is the antithesis of the Church's position of neutrality.
It would be impossible for any organization or publication that identifies itself with a Mayan glyph to represent the Book of Mormon to even consider, let alone fairly evaluate, the teachings of the prophets about the New York Cumorah.
That's why the hirelings of Book of Mormon Central spend their time trying to convince Church members that the prophets are wrong.
That logo represents a deliberate choice to repudiate the teachings of the prophets about the New York Cumorah.
You can see the original explanation here.
Once those who identify themselves with this M2C logo understand how the rest of us perceive it, maybe they will be a little more understanding of our point of view.
Probably not, but hope springs eternal.