Mike Reed

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  1. Great points, and I agree with you. I am not proposing that the Church adopt the symbol of the cross as a dominant expression of their faith. But I do think it wise to reconsider the cultural taboo that has no real doctrinal basis. For example, I think it is a shame that new members often feel compelled to abandon, discard, or hide heirlooms/artwork that were once spiritually meaningful to them. Moreover, I think an open mind is useful, if it is given that God communicates to people according to their own language/understanding. On my mission an investigator believed that a dream of a cross (confirmed by feelings of the HS) was an answer to prayer, letting him know that he should join the church. And as I also mentioned in the youtube video linked to above, Spender W. Kimball had a similar answer to prayer, when he asked God to confirm to his soul that he was indeed divinely called to serve in the quorum of the 12.
  2. To insist that the cross is merely a symbol of death is to fail to understand what a symbol is. A thing becomes a symbol when it is intended to communicate something *beyond* that which is depicted. There are scriptural literary symbols, and the cross is one of them. The cross is the dominant symbol for the atonement in LDS scripture (not the empty tomb or garden of Gethsemane) in the BoM, D&C, and NT. If the cross is acceptable as a literary symbol, then why does it suddenly become taboo in a visual or material form? If it is a symbol of death, and only a symbol of death (and if it is to be assumed that symbols related to Jesus death are inappropriate because Jesus lives), then why is the literary symbol of the cross even found in scripture? Another thing to consider (I am purposefully being vague here) is this: Read Isaiah 22:23, and ask whether similar (if not identical) symbolism is found in sacred LDS ordinances. A consideration of the sacrament/communion and 1 Corinthinans 11:26 may also be in order.
  3. Actually, the disuse of the cross in Mormon culture has a more complicated basis than that.Here again is the video I posted: Here is a pretty good newspaper article (from the Deseret News) that covered my research: Sunstone speaker attempts to explain LDS 'aversion' to cross | Deseret News And if you are interested, you can preview my book on Amazon here: Banishing the Cross: The Emergence of a Mormon Taboo: Michael G. Reed: 9781934901359: Amazon.com: Books If you'd like to read a book review from respected Mormon scholar Boyd J. Peterson, you can read one at the following link: Reed, "Banishing the Cross: The Emergence of a Mormon Taboo" (reviewed by Boyd J. Petersen) - Written Works - AML Discussion Board
  4. This Sunstone Symposium presentation on the Cross in Mormon culture may be of interest:
  5. Link was changed. Try this one: The Mormon Book Review » Blog Archive » An Interview with Michael Reed “Banishing the Cross: The Emergence of a Mormon Taboo” (Episode 12)
  6. If you are interested, a podcast interview about the book was made available today: The Mormon Book Review » Blog Archive » An Interview with Michael Reed “Banishing the Cross: The Emergence of a Mormon Taboo” (Episode 11)
  7. Thanks! It may end up being that my research helps facilitate such a revival. But no... this was not the aim of my book. My aim was simply to explain how and why the cross taboo emerged in Mormon culture, and does not take a position on what I may or may not think Mormons should or shouldn't do.
  8. In case you haven't yeard... the first review of my book is in, and I am pleased to say that it is overwhelmingly positive: For the entire review see the link below: Reed, "Banishing the Cross: The Emergence of a Mormon Taboo" (reviewed by Boyd J. Petersen) - Written Works - AML Discussion Board
  9. The plan is to first publish pb, then a month or so later HB, and finally... if there is a significant demand for it, a Kindle edition. A kindle edition would require a lot of work and money on my part, since I'd need to get permissions for republishing the photos I use digitally.
  10. Many LDS readers have helped me to be objective and neutral in my book. My blog has never gone through this process. Moreover, much in my life has changed since I last posted on my blog. And FWIW... I am actively attending Church again.
  11. This is precisely what I do. As do I. Good news is that it doesn't instruct the Saints or their leaders on what they should do. It simply traces the complex development of LDS Attitudes toward the cross.
  12. Hi Vort. This is a blurb that appears on the back caver of my book, written by Robert Rees. This was not my agenda. My book will help readers to understand the basis of the cross taboo in LDS culture (ie. that is was sort of a historical accident, rooted in a desire to disassociate the Church from Catholicism). By understanding that the taboo has no authoritative revelatory or doctrinal basis, I think some Mormons may feel persuaded to reconsider any negativity they may have towards the symbol. My book will also undermine the assertions of critics, who insist that the absence of the cross in Mormon culture proves that they aren't Christian. This wasn't my agenda either, however. What was my agenda? Simply to trace the development of Mormon attitudes toward the visual/material symbol of the cross.
  13. Some here have expressed interest in my research, and so I'm posting this brief thread to anounce that my book is finally available. You can find it on Amazon at the following link: Banishing the Cross: The Emergence of a Mormon Taboo:Amazon:Books Please spread the word! Thanks!
  14. Token? Are you alluding to something along these lines?: Isaiah 22:23An symbol of one of the instruments used to killed Jesus? Certainly this has no place in Mormonism... or does it?