Friday, June 28, 2013

The Most Serious Sin

What is the most serious sin?  It seems very tempting to try to rank sins.  Alma does it a little when chastising his son Corianton.  But I think people often misapply Alma's words.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

In The Dark

In the Book of Mormon, secret combinations are the main culprit for the destruction of several whole civilizations.  What's so bad about secrets?  It's pretty clear that those secret societies like the Gadianton Robbers depended on the mask of secrecy to avoid the immediate consequences of their evil acts.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Temple Marriage

As a Mormon, I believe that virtually everyone will go to heaven.  However, our capacity to grow and develop in heaven depends upon what we learn and what we do here in our mortal lives.  In particular, only some people will have prepared themselves to be able to tolerate the continual presence of God the Father.  That's why one of the prime focuses of the Church is the temple.  Temple ordinances are not optional.  They are an important part of the preparation.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Logical Fallacies - The Golden Mean Fallacy

This is more formally known as the argument to moderation.  The problem is when people figure that if two parties hold differing views, the truth must be somewhere in the middle.  Please note that the truth may very well be somewhere in the middle, but it might not.  The existence of the differing views is not evidence for the truth being a compromise of the positions.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Peer Pressure

I did not grow up with a tendency to recognize peer pressure.  I certainly had friends, and got along with others.  I cared what others thought of me.  But I wasn't prone to the kind of peer pressure that most kids go through.  I think that helped me deal with my own differences.  I sometimes felt like there was nobody that was like me, that I was all alone.  More often I realized that there must be others, possibly many others, but I would probably never get to know who they were.

Anyway, I think the extent of my feelings of peer pressure was that I didn't want others to misunderstand me.  So I couldn't tell anyone about my orientation, primarily because I knew that others tended to have serious misconceptions about homosexuality.  They would fail to understand me, and that seemed to be the worst thing ever.  I still feel that way somewhat.  Being misunderstood is one of my greatest fears.  But I've got to think peer pressure is different for most other people.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Being a Gay Scout Leader

I've been involved in scouts as a scout and a leader for most of my life.  I'm currently a leader in the scouting program, but since I'm not really "out" I guess I don't count as "open and avowed" according to the scouts.  So I can continue to be a leader.  But what would happen if I came out of that proverbial closet?  Since I'm still active and hold a temple recommend, the Church probably wouldn't have a problem with me being a leader.  But surely there would be some busybody who would so worry about me infecting innocent boys with the gay virus that they would complain to the scouting office.  I worry about the reasoning of these people.  They were okay as long as my orientation was secret, but they're scared of knowing?  That's just so weird.  I'd think if they had the boys best interest at heart, they would encourage openness.  Isn't it better to know more about our boys' leaders than for them to be keeping secrets?  What message are we telling our boys?  Telling the truth will be punished, while refusing to tell the truth is rewarded?  It seems like the wrong message.

Friday, June 7, 2013


You know, one thing that I've thought about a lot is the idea of how much of our sexual drive and our needs for intimacy are driven by hormones.  It really seems that those chemicals in our blood manage an awful lot of our emotional reactions and needs.  I also feel that, at least for me, my hormones are not actually part of my orientation.  My orientation may determine the gender to which my attractions lean, but the nature of those attractions seem to be similar to other guys.  For example, there's research that shows guys tend to be more attracted to smiling girls while girls tend to be attracted to solemn looking guys.  I'm attracted to smiling guys.  Brooding looks do very little for me.  So I'm behaving like a typical guy, except for the gender, of course.  These traits are only true statistically, and of course, vary from person to person.  Still, I tend to be fairly typical in most respects, except for my orientation.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Ack! My queue is gone!

I'm not the kind of person that would be good at regularly blogging.  So I've kept up regular twice-a-week posts by binge-writing my blog and setting the release dates way in the future.  Unfortunately, I just noticed that I don't have a post queued up any more, and I need to pay attention or my regularity will start to slip.  I've been fairly busy, and will be even more unlikely to do too much with the blog as the summer progresses, so either I'll write a bunch of short blog posts and put them all up now, to be released over the next month or so, or I'll have to slack off.  I'm leaning toward trying the former but the latter may happen.  I dunno.  I'd bet I could manage.  We'll see how things go.