• Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by tefor

  1. Recently read: The Tipping Point--Malcolm Gladwell The God Who Weeps--Terryl and Fiona Givens Currently reading: Putting on the Armor of God by Steven Cramer The Smarter Science of Slim by Jonathan Bailor The Field by Lynne McTaggart
  2. Alcohol or no alcohol, no, I would not recommend drinking vinegar. I tried it once when I was 3 or 4 and got sick all over the kitchen floor. Not my beverage of choice.
  3. If you haven't read them already, I recommend that you start with Believing Christ and Following Christ by Stephen Robinson. Other good books dealing with the Atonement are The Broken Heart by Elder Bruce C. Hafen, and The Infinite Atonement by Elder Tad R. Callister. I'm currently reading Light in the Wilderness by M. Catherine Thomas. It's definitely "advanced" reading, and brings in topics and sources not commonly associated with mainstream LDS thought, but it's very enlightening and thought-provoking. (Not published by Deseret, but they carry it.)
  4. I believe it's because Carver was largely modeled upon Murdoch, with a good dose of Ted Turner thrown in as well. Makes sense, since the movie came out right in the middle of all of the media mergers of the 1990s.
  5. ONCE in a saintly passion I cried with desperate grief, "O Lord, my heart is black with guile, Of sinners I am chief." Then stooped my guardian angel And whispered from behind, "Vanity, my little man, You're nothing of the kind." --James Thomson It takes a twisted form of pride for any of us to boast that we are worse than others.
  6. I never got the veneration of Lennon as an icon for peace; to me it meant little more than a bunch of empty slogans. What does move me, however, is the way he committed himself to his wife and son, and really moved beyond the negative and self-destructive antics of his earlier years. He had clearly found peace and joy within himself as a husband and father, and he was always trying to do better than he had in the past. His last interviews were full of hope and optimism. The real tragedy of his murder is that it happened when he finally had so much going for him personally.
  7. I have never actually stopped going to church, nor do I plan to, but there are weeks when my social anxiety gets the better of me, and I feel that staying home, praying, and reading the scriptures would help me feel closer to God than sitting in a chapel and feeling like I don't fit in. Some weeks are better than others, and of course the weeks that I teach Elders Quorum, I go mainly out of a sense of duty. Some of us just have a harder time being around people than others.
  8. Approaching Zion is a collection of speeches and articles from the 1970s and 1980s strongly criticizing the materialism and obsession with wealth in contemporary LDS culture. It is a call for a return to the principles of the Law of Consecration. Nibley's argument is that even if the LoC isn't formally followed by the Church, we have individually made sacred covenants to live those principles, and we are therefore obligated to do so. It is tempting to dismiss Nibley's views as extreme and unrealistic (he more or less states that it is sinful to live much beyond a subsistence level), but his arguments are strongly supported by the scriptures (especially the D&C) and the teachings of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young. There is a lot of overlap and repetition of themes in the book, and I have found it best to read the essays individually and digest each one before moving on to the next. Of all of Nibley's works, this is perhaps the most essential for us to read and understand--especially today, when the sustainability of the way we have been living has been a more urgent issue. (By the way, you can read Approaching Zion here--"Work We Must, But the Lunch is Free" is a must-read.)
  9. I strongly encourage listening to the audio version read by John Cleese--he brilliantly (and hilariously) brings out some of the nuances that are easier to miss when reading the book. I believe you can purchase it at audible.com.
  10. Bro. Madsen was AWESOME!! We've been watching his DVD set "The Eternal Christ", and it is amazing--a real gem.
  11. The Coney Island Waltz from the new musical Love Never Dies. (The show has been controversial, to say the very least, but the music is glorious.)
  12. I turn the alarm clock facing the wall so that the glare doesn't wake me up at 2:30 AM. The alarm's already set, so I don't have much need to be looking at it. I also keep my iPod by my side of the bed. It has several episodes of The Meditation Podcast on it, which always helps me relax and get to sleep. The most important thing for me is to quiet the chatter that's always going on inside my head.
  13. Yes--All through grade school (physically and emotionally), and on into middle school. I wouldn't necessarily say that I was bullied in high school, but the teasing was pretty intense to the point that it amounted to borderline bullying. It didn't help that even at home I was told that I brought it on myself by being so "weird". (This was before anybody had heard of Asperger's Syndrome.) It's been some 25 years now, and I'm getting over it more and more, but the effects still linger somewhat. On the upside, I think it's helped me develop greater empathy for other people than I might have had otherwise, and I try especially hard to make our home a place where our children can come to feel valued and loved when it seems like the whole world is against them.
  14. Got mine a week and a half ago. I like what I have read--it's very enlightening, and surprisingly accessible. More so than much of Nibley's other writings on the BofA. This might be due to Rhodes' contribution. My one quibble is that Nibley apparently didn't write a concluding chapter summing up the "so what" of the previous chapters. He did that for most of his other books--that is, the ones written as proper books or magazine series, and not compilations of articles and talks--and I found those chapters genuinely moving and informative. I understand that he kept putting off the concluding chapter because he regarded this as the culmination of his life's work, and he felt that if he actually finished it then he would be taken and didn't want to go quite yet. (This was according to Bro. Richard Cracroft in his review of Nibley's biography.) Still, we are very fortunate to have this one last gem from Bro. Nibley's magnificent mind.
  15. "Party in the USA" by Miley Cyrus. My boss has her radio on all day long, and whenever I go to talk to her, it seems like that's the song that's always playing--that or Lady GaGa.
  16. I'd start with the Book of Mormon, along with the four gospels in the New Testament. If you want something a bit more "advanced", then the Book of Moses (in the Pearl of Great Price) is incredible.
  17. In the mission, yes, but then the discussions each had a "color", so I'd highlight the scriptures in red and then shade the inside margin with the appropriate color. Now, I just highlight in blue, and only the words or phrases that stand out to me--otherwise, if I highlight the whole verse, the pertinent part gets "hidden". Mostly, though, I rely on notes and cross-references in the margin.
  18. Yes, it's coming out--next month, in fact. The following message is on the FARMS website: (Drool--Drool--Drool)
  19. Saw this at Borders tonight. It's called Counterfeit Gods by Timothy Keller. He's not LDS, but flipping through it, I was reminded of President Kimball's great talk "The False Gods We Worship"--it seems like a book-length treatment on the same theme. Keller talks about the gods of wealth, fame, "success", sex, power, etc. (Reminds me of what Hugh Nibley said about the four pursuits that God forbids: fame, wealth, power, and the lusts of the flesh.) You can read about it and see some sample pages at Amazon. (I'm going to see if the library has it--I liked what I saw.)
  20. Unfortunately, throwing money at the poor seems to be a lot easier than spending time with them to help them work out their challenges; that way, people can let the government take care of them and forget they exist. When families (immediate or extended) and communities are unable or unwilling to help out the less fortunate, the government tends to step in to fill the void.
  21. I can sing "We Are the World" in all the different voices. And I can also sing popular songs (Britney Spears, Natasha Bedingfield, etc.) in a "Julie Andrews" voice.
  22. I've learned not to pay too much attention to Mormon culture, which in any case is largely middle-class American culture mingled with scripture. At this stage, my main concern is nurturing my relationship with my Heavenly Father and with my Savior.
  23. Sheesh. How hard can it be to figure out? If you can't afford a $500K home, DON'T BUY IT. If you can't afford a $250K home, DON'T BUY IT. If you can't afford a $150K home, and can't find anything cheaper, then keep renting instead--and thank the Lord that you at least have a place to live (and can move with relatively little hassle, should the need arise). Remember: "What is property unto me, saith the Lord?" (D&C 117:4) Way back when my bishop was telling me that I needed to get with it and buy a house (the responsible thing to do), I told him that I couldn't afford it, and went my way. (When you're trying to get by on $35,000 a year with three special needs kids, the last thing you want to deal with is a mortgage.) No matter what society, the banks, the government, or even the Church says, I know what I can afford, and the responsibility is mine--nobody else's. Same goes for anybody else who buys a home they can't afford.
  24. That book is one of the best antidotes I know of to the insane perfectionism which continues to haunt me from time to time. Next to the scriptures, it should be required reading for everybody in the Church. Check out The Broken Heart by Bruce C. Hafen, also. One of the most insightful, eloquently written pieces on how the Atonement interacts with the messiness of daily life.