The Theology of Orson Pratt in Orson Scott Card’s Enderverse

December 27, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 12:52 pm   Category: Theology

I don’t read a lot of fiction. It’s not that I don’t like reading good fiction – more that I have trouble stopping. When I get a book I really like I have trouble sleeping or concentrating until I finish it. For that reason, I tend to read my fiction on vacations and holidays. Last Christmas I was inspired by a post by Kaimi to get a copy of Enders Game. I loved it and powered through it in a day or two. Last week I decided to try the sequel, Speaker For the Dead, and couldn’t put it down either (causing me to drop out of a few hot blog debates here and elsewhere…). If anything, I think Speaker For the Dead might be even better than Ender’s Game. I’m on to the third in the series now, Xenocide. I’m about half way through and it is not shaping up to be as good as the first two books, but it does give me some good fodder for a blog post. As it turns out, the universe Ender and friends live in is apparently built on the theology and metaphysics (ideas about the nature of reality) of 19th century Mormon apostle Orson Pratt. (more…)

Call Me George

December 26, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 5:04 pm   Category: Life

You know how Prince and P Diddy are constantly changing their names? I’m thinking about doing that myself. It’s not for any glamorous reasons. I’m thinking that my new name will help me keep a new year’s resolution that I’ve made for myself. I’ve decided that 2006 will be the year of frugality for me. (more…)

Arizona Bloggersnacker

December 23, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 8:55 am   Category: Bloggernacle

Date: Tuesday, December 27
Time: 7:00 PM
Place: The Johnston’s house in Queen Creek (SE of Mesa)

We got a note from Kaimi Wenger letting us know he will be in town for the holidays. We decided that it would be a good opportunity to throw the first Arizona bloggernacle shindig. If you are interested in hanging with the Johnstons and Wengers and any other Arizona ‘Nacle citizens that can make it, just email me at geoff at for directions. We hope you Zoners can make it!

The Destruction of the Soul

December 18, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 7:05 pm   Category: Eternal Progression,Spirits/Intelligences,Theology

One of the things that remain a mystery to the world is the nature of the soul. I have already written a couple of posts on this subject, the first was called “Are we eternal or is it just our parts that are eternal?” and the second was my recent post on the Sterling McMurrin book. McMurrin put it pretty well when he said the question was one of what our spirits are made of – are they necessary or contingent; are they made up of irreducible parts or are they “simple”, irreducible, and indestructible themselves. When he wrote his book in 1965, McMurrin felt that the parts model was dominant in Mormonism. (more…)

Feed My Sheep

December 15, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 11:16 pm   Category: Feed My Sheep,Scriptures

I like the idea of writing posts in the series. I’ve tried on several occasions. The problem is that after the first post or two, I usually lose interest and the series peters out. Well I’m going to try it again with this “Feed My Sheep” series.

One feature I have recently added to the Thang is categorization of my posts. You’ll notice that under the title of every post there is list of the categories in which the post fits. If you are interested in posts on Eternal Progression then just click on that category and all the posts discussing that will pop up together. I think it’s a pretty nifty feature. I’ve given this miniseries its own sub-category as well. (more…)

A Guy’s Guide to Romantic Gift Giving

December 13, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 6:15 pm   Category: Life

Husbands, boyfriends, and guys with crushes: You would be wise to listen to my words for they will serve you well.

It’s that time of year for you — a time of feeling, overwhelmed, frustrated, and maybe a little fearful. You must find the perfect gift (or maybe just a gift) to give to your beloved and you have no idea where to begin. Stress no more for I, the angel of Christmas presents, am here to guide you through these yuletide obstacles. In other words, this is just a little friendly advice to turn you from doofus to hero on Christmas morning. (more…)

It’s Getting a Little Chili in Here

December 11, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 10:45 am   Category: Life

As you may have read in a previous post of my husband’s I have a super-villain name. Not only do I go by Kristen and mama, I also go by Hobbygoblin. This is because I have a super-human ability to pick a hobby, learn all about it, tear it up, wear it out, and move on to the next hobby. (more…)

Christmas Letters: My Kids are Better Than Your Kids

December 7, 2005    By: Kristen J @ 8:53 pm   Category: Life

I think I may have come out of my “bah humbug mood”. Do you know what caused me to do so? Christmas letters! I love them. Every December I run to my mailbox hoping that it will be stuffed with letters from family, friends, and people that I knew for a little while a very long time ago. (more…)

Greetings to those who are reading this in the year 2045

   By: Geoff J @ 1:53 pm   Category: Bloggernacle,Life,Mormon Culture/Practices,Scriptures

An interesting recent comment got me a thinkin’ again (and as you know – that means trouble). The part that got me thinking was that the commenter was questioning the value of our online discussions here at the Thang and in the Bloggernacle in general. He hinted that we would be much better off (and that we could better serve God) by putting down the laptop and spending more face to face time with our needy neighbors. The gist of my response was to question why spending time face to face with neighbors was so much better than spending time in engaging “keyboard to keyboard” religious discussions here on the blog. My theory is that here at the Thang I can add much more value to my distant Web neighbors than I can with the folks I happen to live next to because here we have an opt-in conversation about important topics that we all actually care about. For instance, my next door neighbor has zero interest in discussing the strengths or weaknesses of various parables describing the atonement. But I do, and so do other people in the world. The problem is that the other people who want to talk about these things live hundreds of thousands of miles away from me. By discussing those things here at the Thang, the relatively small group of us becomes virtual neighbors who can teach, uplift, enlighten, and edify each other. It also lets us stretch ourselves by raising the level of the discourse far beyond the often superficial level we encounter in conversations with those we live near or worship with locally. (more…)

Exaltation: It’s All About Who You Know… or… Puncture or Perish… or… Storm Chasers

December 2, 2005    By: Geoff J @ 5:05 pm   Category: Mormon Culture/Practices,Personal Revelation

I have been meaning to use these pithy post titles for some time now but since the content I have in mind for them overlaps I decided to use them all for this single post. The overall subject is one of my favorites and one of the most important we could talk about – personal revelation. (more…)