long ago ideas

“When we are tired, we are attacked by ideas we conquered long ago." - Friedrich Nietzsche. Long ago, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery conquered false claims that the Book of Mormon was fiction or that it came through a stone in a hat. But these old claims have resurfaced in recent years. To conquer them again, we have to return to what Joseph and Oliver taught.

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

The Backyard Professor and I discuss No More Contention

I had a delightful conversation with the Backyard Professor, Kerry Shirts, recently. The video is here:


Among other things, we discussed the No More Contention website (https://nomorecontention.blogspot.com/). 

Both of us find this approach of seeking understanding and clarity far more enjoyable and productive than the old model of apologists and critics arguing over stuff, playing gatekeepers, and all the other shenanigans we saw in the Peter Pan fiasco.

At one point, we gave an example of how we completely disagree about a specific topic (a short video by President Oaks), but by discussing our different perspectives we gained a better understanding of one another with zero animosity, offense, defensiveness, etc.

Some of the Interpreters even object to the NoMoreContention page!

I mentioned that some of the Interpreters had objected that I went on Kerry's channel in the first place and also objected that on this blog I had included a link to Bill Reel's video about Peter Pan. They "warned" me against these critics, saying they would use me to attack the Church somehow.

I pointed out that none of the Interpreters have ever invited me to be on their podcasts or radio shows, although they have discussed me there. They've never invited me to speak at any of their events or even to their small groups. 

By contrast, Heartlanders have invited some of the Interpreters to speak at their conference. Heartlanders are interested in understanding other points of view. They are interested in clarity. They recognize the value of multiple working hypotheses that help people make informed decisions.

The Interpreters reject all of these values. They don't want their audiences to know what I actually think. Instead, they filter and misrepresent what I've said and written to keep their audiences and followers in line with their M2C and SITH agendas.

It's pathetic, really. I can't tell whether the Interpreters don't trust their audiences or they are so insecure about their own beliefs that they have to control the narrative. Probably a combination.

But it doesn't matter anyway. Thanks to the Peter Pan disaster that Dan Peterson promoted so heavily, fair-minded people, regardless of their beliefs, can see that the Interpreters' brand of apologetics is unpersuasive, uncharitable, and undesirable. 

Worse, it does nothing for clarity and mutual understanding.

I look forward to more conversations based on No More Contention. 

I hope some of the Interpreters will join the effort. It would be a welcome change in direction.

But meanwhile, we'll keep moving forward in a positive direction toward unity in diversity, mutual understanding, clarity, and finding common ground wherever we can as we all strive to make the world a better place and contribute to the progress of the Restoration and all that entails.

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