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Everything posted by Webster

  1. At first, you wanted to know why I was only interested in a definition of Agency from the Book of Mormon, but I never said or even implied that. Now you think I'm concerned about it not being in the Book of Mormon. I'm not concerned at all. Right before my comment you are referring to, was a comment which said: I replied to that comment: Again, I don't know where you got the idea that I was concerned. I was merely pointing out that it would be hard to learn anything about the definition of a word (Agency) by quoting from a book which never uses that word. Which I also acknowledge in my very next sentence: Providing this much information about a single statement I made, is too time consuming and draining. I would like to get back to the real subject of this post, discussing various points of view that people may have about Agency that go beyond the common "free to choose" definition (see my comment #1). I thanked you for your comment (#44) above when you made it, and thanked you a few more times when I was commenting on what you had said. I thought you had some interresting points to bring into the discussion of Agency, and I hope you'll feel free to add more if you wish.
  2. Just_A_Guy: Okay, I think I see the problem. You don't want me to miss the fact that "free will" is a part of Agency. I agree. You've also shown by the Law dictionary that "accountability" is also part of Agency. I agree. I think using the Law dictionary definition would be a better way to teach Agency, since both sides of the issue ("free will" and "accountability") are equally represented, mutually dependent, and inextricably linked. I don't like Agency being used as a synonym for freedom of choice because it separates those two principles by focusing on only one side. If we only want to discuss the freedom to choose, we should use "free will" instead of Agency so as not to confound the meanings. For instance, the word Atonement should not be used as a synonym for forgiveness; forgiveness is its own related issue, and while the Atonement is related to the principle of forgiveness, there is so much more. Likewise, Faith should not be used as a synonym for belief. Again we lose the full meaning of the word by focusing in on just a part. I hope that helps out.
  3. The above is a good example of what I'm asking for in this forum: Ideas about Agency that go beyond the normal, "freedom to choose," explanation. They may be more in depth than the general idea, alternate ideas, or completely off-the-wall. I'm just collecting different points of view, while not denying that free will is a related and true principle. I understand your point. I have a reprint of an 1828 dictionary. The words Agent and Agency have two main meanings in it: basically Acting, and Acting for another. Modern dictionaries have more meanings today, but as far as I can tell, they (including the examples you provided) are all based on these two main ideas that were the definition at the time of Joseph Smith. Those two ideas I think are valid as possible ideas to take into account when trying to learn about Agency. At least it is another point of view which seems to have some validity or possibilities. That 1828 dictionary actually has the word a'nt (with a line over the 'a' to make it long). So ain't was in at least that dictionary 180 years ago. (Just an interesting note) I would be interested to find out more about this. Thank you. I never said that. You'll have to read my comments and the context of the discussion which was going on at the time. Thank you again. This is another point of view I have heard which I find interesting. I agree. Again, thanks for some more interesting info.
  4. Scattered 52 bicycles is a refererence to playing (face) cards. That's my immediate take on part of what's going on.
  5. If you can quote a Book of Mormon scripture with the word Agency in it, I would be very interested (Since it does not appear in the actual Book of Mormon text). If you quote a Book of Mormon scripture which speaks of Acting for themselves, like the D&C and Book of Moses talk about Agents unto themselves, then I'll fully agree, since Agent and Acting are related terms and the structure of the two phrases is very similar. That's one reason I really liked what Just_A_Guy had to say. Any other Book of Mormon scriptures may contain ideas that are related to the concept of Agency, but may not actually be a definition of the word which I keep saying I am looking for. For instance, you can say that Repentence is the way to implement the atonement in your life, but that does not make, "the way to implement the atonement in your life" the definition of Repentence. It's an implication of the word, but not it's definition. "Freedom to choose" is an implication of Agency, but I don't think it is the definition of the word.
  6. I think you misunderstood my point. We should not use Agency (or even Free Agency) to describe "freedom to choose". That is not what Agency means to the rest of the world, and I don't think it meant that originally in our scriptures. We should use the scriptural term "Free Will" to describe the idea of "freedom to choose", and Agency should be something along the lines of what you have suggested. McConkie in Mormon Doctrine gave four principles which were necessary for there to be Agency. #4 is an unfettered power of choice must prevail. If an unfettered power of choice is needed to have Agency, then Agency should not be equated with "free choice", since that's only one of four ingredients.
  7. Just_A_Guy: I agree that we teach the pieces, but they're not tied as tightly together. How many of our Youth get the freedom side and fail to grasp the accountability. Also, how many non-members don't understand us when we talk about Agency. If we used "Free Will" (a scriptural term) to describe freedom to choose, we would be understood immediately.
  8. I think we should better understand the definition of the word from the original revelations (Agency), and not continue to use the definition ("freedom of choice") which comes from the philosophical concept of Free Agency. The Lord chould have used the term Free Agency if he wanted to, but He didn't. (By the way, don't get me wrong. I do believe in Free Will, and the Lord actually used that term in the scriptures.) I think we miss out on greater insights when we focus on a particular type of Agency. It's like defining Faith as nothing more than Belief. Or talking about all Ice Cream as only Vanilla.
  9. I thought someone asked which standard dictionary to compare to, but I can't find the comment now. Anyway, you can check any traditional dictionary you want. Here's one link dictionary.com I previously posted which had several dictionaries that came up.
  10. Just_A_Guy: I would say that Black's Law Dictionary does not follow the common "freedom to choose" definition, but rather teaches Agency the way it should be taught, using a real definition. God speaks to us in our own language, therefore Agency should not be something different in LDS thought, and definitely should not be a term borrowed from philosophy (i.e., free agency). Having said that, you are absolutely right. You are using an actual dictionary definition, and not the traditional Free Agency idea which I believe came into the church through philosophy's influence. You are saying something very much like I've seen in a few other places on the internet. I've alluded to these other ideas without divulging them, hoping that others might have heard them or bring in these ideas without my prodding. I may refer to them in the future, but the one I like the best is very much in line with what you've said. Have you taken my polls yet?
  11. Hemi: This is the only quote you provided which is even worth discussing. None of the others even contain the word Agent or Agency. As I have said, I understand that Free Will is a correct principle, but I disagree that the words Agent and Agency in the scriptures is the same thing. In the above quote, Joseph Smith used the term "free agent" which is a specific type of agent. As you know, the scriptures never say Free Agent or Free Agency. And if you read the quote, you'll find that no where does it even equate Free Agent with freedom or choice like I said. Here's a better quote you should have used: . . . he [Joseph Smith] says satan Cannot Seduce us by his Enticements unles we in our harts Consent & yeald—our organization such that we can Resest the Devil If we were Not organized so we would Not be free agents. — William P. McIntire Minute Book, March 16, 1841, The Words of Joseph Smith: The Contemporary Accounts of the Nauvoo Discourses of the Prophet Joseph, compiled and edited by Andrew F. Ehat and Lyndon W. Cook [Provo: BYU Religious Studies Center, 1980], p. 65. Joseph still uses the term Free Agent (not in the scriptures), and he uses it correctly. A Free Agent at that time meant an Agent who can act freely, so it doesn't define what Agent means, it only talks about a specific type of Agent (i.e., one who acts freely). So I still issue the following invitations:
  12. Hemi: I think there is more to agency than meets the eye. Did Joseph Smith ever define Agency as the freedom to choose, or in a similar manner? The scriptures use the word without defining it as so many of our modern speakers feel a need to do. I think Agency probably meant exactly what the dictionary says. The dictionary does not define Agency in terms of freedom or choice. Ditto for thesauruses. Free will is definitely a related concept, but Agency as defined in the dictionary, has more to do with acting and actions, or the acting in behalf of/representing of another. That's why I've been asking if anyone out there has a view of Agency which is different from the common, traditional view of freedom of choice.
  13. Apparently, the Jaredites ate swine, but they left the old world prior to the institution of the Mosaic Law. (See Ether 9:18)
  14. I think it's funny that many Christians eat Ham as a traditional Christmas meal. Take that, Law of Moses!
  15. For any just joining in, the main idea of this thread is "Do you have, or have you heard of, a 'non-traditional' idea or definition of Agency?" (Please review comment #1 for the full question and idea. Also there is a link to some polls if you're interested.) Did you know that the traditional 'Mormon' definition of Agency [freedom to choose] is NOT in standard dictionary definitions? (By the way, if anyone can find a mainstream dictionary or thesarus that ties Agency or Agents to either the ideas of Freedom or Choice, please show me. I'd love to see it!) I do believe in free will and the freedom to choose. The principles that are commonly talked about when discussing Agency are correct. But I am also interested in those points of view that see Agency in a slightly different, or non-traditional manner. I have especially been interested in the comments made so far where people have seen Agency more in line with what the dictionary says. I think that is a very interesting view.
  16. He couldn't sleep because of a leaky faucet. He was counting the number of times his leaking faucet dripped. (He's obsessive compulsive)
  17. If George is my son, he is counting the minutes until he can get out of taking a nap on Sunday. Unfortunately, Mom said if he didn't fall asleep after an hour he could get out of his nap, and he's a headstrong, stubborn little guy (like his dad).
  18. Come on! A man sweeping the house? Get real. (Okay, so it would have been funnier comin' from a woman)
  19. Diamond riddle: This is not a complete thought, but ... Could the wife be blind searching for her ring in a dark house (she did not turn on the lights)? Hubby comes home (it's dark so he almost trips over her). He'll turn on the lights when he tries to look for the diamond, which will give him an advantage. But why does he think he'll find it in the first place he looks? Here's where I get iffy. Did he step on it as he entered the house, or as he put his foot down after nearly tripping over his wife? (Sorry, I'm wrong. It was not a complete thought when I started typing, but then as I typed the first part, I came up with the idea that Hubby stepped on it in the darkened room which completed my possible solution.)
  20. Justice: So it sounds to me that Agency + Dominion = Stewardship in a way. Like the parable with the stewards that are each given some coins. They have full authority over them until their lord returns, then they have to give them back and account for what they did with them. I'm I getting the picture?
  21. I still like mine better, but I'm okay with yours as long as he's using a very old phone because all of mine keep the numbers for way too long.
  22. Husband of the world, take note: That is the smart way to do it!
  23. It doesn't matter what you "think" the guards know. We don't "know" what they know. You're assuming that the guards knew who each other was. Just because the riddle tells me that one lies and ones tells the truth does not say whether they knew anything about the other. What if they made barely changed the guards five minutes ago and these two had never talked or met previously? Don't assume more information than is there. Anyway, I'll drop that, but will you admit that my solution was actually right? (Even though you said it wrong yet you proved by your very example that it worked. See comments #81 and #88.) Comment #33 is the original riddle for any wishing to judge for themselves.
  24. Thank you Loudmouth. Your example helps me see where you're coming from, and what you were getting at with your previous comment.