The Problem of Evil and Evolutionary Biology

November 30, 2011    By: Matt W. @ 10:30 pm   Category: Evolutionary psychology

I have discussed the problem of evil in the past[1], and what I feel is the Church’s unique position on how the atonement itself acts as a theodicy, God responding with everything he can to our suffering. I still stand by the general premise of that post, that the universe is governed by eternal laws independent of God [2] and that man has free agency and thus God is not accountable for him. [3] I also still hold that through the Atonement of Christ, God is doing all he can to alleviate our suffering.

I’d like to speculate a little bit more about why God isn’t doing more to alleviate suffering. Here is where some theories associated with evolution come in. [4] (more…)

Did Joseph actually say that?

November 13, 2011    By: Matt W. @ 4:20 pm   Category: Life

Recently, I have come across 2 or 3 sites which attribute the following statement to Joseph Smith: “stay close to the trunk of the tree and don’t get out into the branches”. Today it was also quoted in Sunday School.

However, I can’t find any such statement from Smith, or on any other authority (though I’ve found quite a few sites attributing it to Smith and some attributing it to Harold B. Lee, I can’t find any direct quotes.)

So, all ye mighty church folk, where did this come from?

What would comfort you?

November 1, 2011    By: Matt W. @ 7:53 am   Category: Life

All of us have burdens we carry. Most of us have burdens we carry which we wish our faith would address in some specific way. Some have burdens which have lead them into inactivity, others, into the foyer with tears in their eyes, and others into shouting expletives on the internet.

So today I am curious, what would comfort you?

What could I do to comfort you as just a lay member?
What could that speaker do in Sacrament?
That teacher in Sunday School?
The General Authorities in conference?

Today my burden is that you are not comforted, and the only solace I see is to wear out my life seeking balm for your wounds.

But I don’t know how. So I am sincerely asking, what would comfort you?