Thursday, June 5, 2008

I'd Rather Know

When I was in high school, I was confronted with the existence of temple garments by a friend who wasn’t Mormon. Quite honestly I had never heard of them before and dismissed the whole notion as nonsense. Neither of my parents had been to the temple. Of course, I was later surprised to learn she was right. Well, mostly right, anyway.

Around the same time our ward planned an activity for the youth which involved explaining the events leading up to and including Mountain Meadows. The idea was to present the proven facts so that we would not be caught off guard by the speculation of anti-Mormons. I remember the discussion to this day. While they did not get all the facts right, I applaud the effort. Based on the difference between the two events, I prefer to learn about these things before I am surprised by them. How can I use my agency if I don’t know about the choice? How can I have faith it is true if it is presented in a way that does not require that leap of faith?

We don’t need to create erroneous notions about church history to make it more believable. It is pretty preposterous as it is. A little more truth won’t hurt it. Just a couple of years ago, I ran across a reference to the Kinderhook plates. I had somehow missed the Ensign article from 1981. My bishop basically told me there are somethings better left alone. I couldn't disagree more. As a result I determined to learn all the dirty little secrets no talks about. I would not be surprised again.

Part of the purpose of this blog is to put out there a snapshot of where I am in that journey. My approach to research is eclectic. Seldom do I have the time or discipline to focus on one subject long enough to learn all there is to learn. So if anyone sees I have missed something along the way, feel free to point it out.

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