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Faith is By Choice An LDS Faith Blog

Sic Et Non

Jacques and Raïssa Maritain

4 hours 39 minutes ago
    The French Catholic philosopher Jacques Maritain (1882-1973), although raised a Protestant, became an agnostic in the course of his schooling.  In 1904, he married the Russian-born Raïssa Oumansoff (1883-1960).  She had been raised a Jew, but had become an atheist.   In 1906, both Jacques and Raïssa converted to Catholicism.  Shortly thereafter, he completed his studies […]
Dan Peterson

“The Seven Deadly Sins of the Religion Beat”

8 hours 30 minutes ago
    Here’s a nice article in a non-Latter-day-Saint venue about the 2018 “Religious Freedom Annual Review,” sponsored by Brigham Young University’s International Center for Law and Religion Studies, a subdivision within BYU’s J. Reuben Clark Law School:    “At a religious freedom conference in Utah, a diverse panel explores how to get news media […]
Dan Peterson

Where do things stand today?

9 hours 31 minutes ago
    Carrying on with the first draft of my book on the Islam and the Middle East for Latter-day Saints:   At the beginning of this book, I said that we would treat the ques­tion of whether Orson Hyde’s mission to the Near East had been a success. The answer, I think, should by […]
Dan Peterson

“Religious Freedom Annual Review 2018: Religion and the Common Good”

19 hours 15 minutes ago
    I spent almost all day yesterday (Wednesday) at the Religious Freedom Annual Review 2018: Religion and the Common Good — the fourth of its kind — sponsored by the International Center for Law and Religion Studies at Brigham Young University.  It’s a two-day event, and I regret that I can’t be there today, as well. […]
Dan Peterson

Daniel Peterson, deviationist and heretic

2 days 7 hours ago
    Some years ago, I read Ralph Hancock’s translation of Alain Besançon’s A Century of Horrors: Communism, Nazism, and the Horrors of the Shoah.   I believe it was in that book that I encountered this interesting observation:   Nazism, Besançon wrote (if it was indeed Besançon), had a finite goal.  At least in […]
Dan Peterson

A potpourri of Mormoniana

2 days 10 hours ago
    Today, the incomparable Jeffrey Mark Bradshaw completes two years of service, with his wife, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo Kinshasa Mission.   Thankfully, on top of his responsibilities in Africa, Dr. Bradshaw was able to continue contributing to the work of the Interpreter Foundation, for which he serves as a vice […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 7, in conclusion)

3 days 10 hours ago
    A conclusion to the story:   A community of Latter-day Saints now exists in the Holy Land. It is not a community of agriculturalists and canal-builders, as our ancestors had pictured, but a community of scholars, teachers, and students. In a very real sense, I believe it fulfills the dreams and aspirations of […]
Dan Peterson

Some news on the religious freedom front

3 days 13 hours ago
    On Wednesday and Thursday of this week, Brigham Young University’s very significant International Center for Law and Religion Studies (in connection with which I participated in a conference at the law school of the University of Jordan back in April) will be hosting its 2018 Religious Freedom Annual Review:   The theme […]
Dan Peterson

Egypt in December! (Or, failing that, in May!)

4 days 6 hours ago
    It has been suggested that I re-post the following, since the available places on the tour are evidently going fast.  And, frankly, the Nile cruise ship that we want to use has limited space; if we don’t claim it, somebody else will.  So, if there is anybody out there who’s thinking about signing […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 6)

4 days 10 hours ago
    On and on and on it goes . . .   For some time thereafter, no matter how careful we were, some new and usually rather ridiculous charge would still occasionally surface. One amusing instance of this was the accusation published by an Orthodox Jewish newspaper in both Jerusalem and New York during […]
Dan Peterson

A note on 1 Samuel 15

4 days 12 hours ago
    I taught 1 Samuel 9-17 in my ward’s Gospel Doctrine class today.   Memorable stories.   The account given in 1 Samuel 15 in particular, though, is a very difficult one.  The total annihilation of a people is painful to read about, particularly when the directive to do so is said to have […]
Dan Peterson

On Fatherhood, Chastity, and Traditional Values

5 days 5 hours ago
    An interesting and calendar-appropriate article in a non-LDS venue by two professors at Brigham Young University:   “Living Into Fatherhood”   ***   The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is commonly mocked for its supposedly outdated and prudish notions of chastity and sexual self-restraint.  Here’s a relevant reflection from Will and […]
Dan Peterson

A thought on one small portion of the theological problem of evil

5 days 15 hours ago
    Perhaps the most serious threat to theistic belief is the problem of evil.  If God exists, and if God is both good and all-powerful, evil is difficult to explain.  Again assuming that he exists and that evil exists, God is either not good or he is not all-powerful.  He either cannot prevent evil […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 5)

5 days 17 hours ago
    More, regarding the construction of the most visible Latter-day Saint landmark in the Middle East:   On 4 March 1987, occupancy permits were issued for the not­ quite-completed center and, on the recommendation of both the Church’s legal staff and its local lawyers, students and faculty immediately moved into the twenty-million-dollar structure. On […]
Dan Peterson

Four Years Ago, Today

5 days 21 hours ago
    As I’ve explained a few times, I maintain a blog for many reasons.   One of them is purely personal:  It’s a kind of journal for me, and, even more particularly, it’s a way of remembering things, and especially of remembering people, whose memory I refuse to allow to be wholly lost.   […]
Dan Peterson

From the Interpreter Foundation

6 days 7 hours ago
    We who are associated with the Interpreter Foundation and its weekly publication, Interpreter: A Journal of Mormon Scripture, are pleased to be able to share with a Latter-day Saint audience an important article by Noel Reynolds that first appeared in the Scottish Journal of Theology 68:2 (2015), 218-34:   “The Gospel According to Mormon”   […]
Dan Peterson

The Saga of BYU’s Jerusalem Center (Part 4)

6 days 10 hours ago
    Another episode of the continuing story:   Judaism, like Islam, finds a major source of its religious author­ity and practice in the past. But modern values like democracy, equal rights, and religious toleration have come into general accep­tance only since the time in which the fundamental documents of the two religions were composed […]
Dan Peterson

I hope to see you in Las Vegas

6 days 20 hours ago
    Several times on this blog I’ve mentioned the annual libertarian extravaganza known as FreedomFest.   I’ve participated in (I think) two or three of these previously, and I’ll be doing so yet again this year.   On Thursday, 12 July, from 1 PM to 1:50 PM, I’ll be debating with Michael Shermer on […]
Dan Peterson

Peterson’s First Rule for the Study of Other Religions

1 week ago
    Nearly three decades ago now, I spent a summer in Berkeley, California, participating in a small seminar led by the preeminent student of comparative religions Huston Smith (1919-2016) and sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities.   It was an extraordinary and memorable experience on many levels — not the least of […]
Dan Peterson

A train of thought regarding the historicity of the resurrection of Jesus

1 week ago
    My most recent column for the Deseret News has appeared.  I’ve been busy with other things today, but here’s a link to it:   “11 contributions of the Book of Mormon”   ***   The most recent Old Testament KnoWhy from the Interpreter Foundation is now available:   “How Does the Story of […]
Dan Peterson
1 hour 39 minutes ago
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