Event: Salt Lake Symposium 2007

THE MALE FACES OF MORMONISM: TO BEARD OR NOT TO BEARD

THE MALE FACES OF MORMONISM: TO BEARD OR NOT TO BEARD This paper discusses the (male, sorry ladies!) face of humanity over the years, specifically the Mormon attitudes about facial hair. I’ll review beards in historical perspective then examine the changes in feelings about facial hair since Joseph Smith’s time. While Mormonism has generally followed …

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THE RESTORATION AND THE SACRED MUSHROOM: DID JOSEPH SMITH USE PSYCHEDELICS TO FACILITATE HIS VISIONARY EXPERIENCES?

THE RESTORATION AND THE SACRED MUSHROOM: DID JOSEPH SMITH USE PSYCHEDELICS TO FACILITATE HIS VISIONARY EXPERIENCES? Gnosticism and shamanism practice techniques of “knowing”, entering spiritual dimensions and experiencing the ineffable, both heavenly and hellish. Derivative forms of these ancient traditions were practiced in upstate New York during Joseph Smith’s formative years. Interestingly, shamans and Gnostics …

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WHAT IS SPIRITUAL WELL-BEING? CORE PRINCIPLES BASED ON STRESS RESILIENCE AND HEALTH SCIENCE

WHAT IS SPIRITUAL WELL-BEING? CORE PRINCIPLES BASED ON STRESS RESILIENCE AND HEALTH SCIENCE We yearn for spiritual well-being. But what is it? And how could one prove proposed answers? Surprisingly, answers lie in studies of stress-related illness. Four well-proven principles of stress resilience, with powerful health effects, are primarily spiritual. Interestingly, the same principles underlie …

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THE FERRYMAN’S DAUGHTER, PART 1: THE INSISTENT CALL OF MY MITOCHONDRIAL DNA

THE FERRYMAN’S DAUGHTER, PART 1: THE INSISTENT CALL OF MY MITOCHONDRIAL DNA While DNA science challenges such Mormon beliefs as Israelite ancestry for Native Americans, it promises fresh pursuits for genealogists. Particularly suggestive is our ability, publicized by Oxford geneticist Bryan Sykes’s Seven Daughters of Eve, to track mitochondrial DNA mutations to European “clan mothers”, …

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SL07141: Stand-up comedy – MORMON MEETS WORLD

Stand-up comedy – MORMON MEETS WORLD BENGT WASHBURN “killed” during his lunchtime set at last year’s Sunstone symposium. We had to have him back! After nine years of toil, his bank account and resumé were inferior to those of a trained monkey. Since he switched to comedy, Bengt has performed in comedy clubs and on …

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A BIBLE OF OUR OWN

A BIBLE OF OUR OWN It is time to have a Mormon Bible, one produced by Mormons for Mormons. It would have helpful study and interpretive features, including best original language mss, paragraph layout, versification, poetic form, footnotes, cross-references, textual variants, modern language, pronunciation guide. It would lead to a more precise and deeper understanding …

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‘I’M BLESSED’: AN INTERVIEW WITH DARIUS GRAY

‘I’M BLESSED’: AN INTERVIEW WITH DARIUS GRAY Darius Aidan Gray joined the LDS church in 1964, at a time when black members were not allowed to hold the priesthood and could not enjoy temple blessings. But a remarkable answer to prayer, “This is the restored gospel and you are to join,” led him to put …

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WHAT WOULD HENRY JAMES SAY? READINGS FROM A NOVEL IN PROGRESS

WHAT WOULD HENRY JAMES SAY? READINGS FROM A NOVEL IN PROGRESS We yearn for spiritual well-being. But what is it? And how could one prove proposed answers? Surprisingly, answers lie in studies of stress-related illness. Four well-proven principles of stress resilience, with powerful health effects, are primarily spiritual. Interestingly, the same principles underlie studies of …

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