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|My Hope for the Bloggernacle|
Apr. 9th, 2009 at 12:42 am
Adam Greenwood resigned today from Times and Seasons, and some people are lamenting that his departure will make Times and Seasons less balanced. Not me.
I suppose what I dislike most about the Bloggernacle is that people like Adam Greenwood are taken to represent LDS orthodoxy — I bristle at hearing this the same way that I bristle when people say that Pat Buchanan represents conservative orthodoxy.
What I dislike second most about the Bloggernacle is how people like Adam Greenwood are able to manipulate their own disgrace into an accusatory examination of another man’s faith. Adam resigned today from Times and Seasons, and Steve Evans’ comment #88 sums up the discussion that ensued on T&S, as well as the post that Adam wrote for his own new blog:
This is one of the more lamentable side-effects of the method of Adam’s departures: awkward and boisterous declarations of orthodoxy at the expense of others. It’s lamentable not because declarations of faith are lamentable, but because here they are not naturally emerging as testimonies ought, but seem forced as a means of preserving readers… Adam’s departure and the examination of Kaimi’s mormonism strike me as a sort of repulsive witch-hunt, with little more than blog readership at stake. We all look bad for participating in it.
I’ll go further than this. It disgusts me to see someone pretend to defend righteousness by attacking the orthodoxy of another Mormon’s opinions. The thing I dislike third most about the Bloggernacle is that commenters feed into this kind of behavior. Why do some Mormons insist on pretending that they can measure their righteousness or their orthodoxy by the disdain that they feel for others’ faith?
I love to hear expressions of faith from all ranges of orthodoxy and devotion, just as long as it doesn’t insult other people’s devotion and beliefs in the process. I dislike it when evangelicals use their expressions of faith to attack Mormons. I dislike it even more when I hear Mormons using their expressions of faith to publicly tear down other Mormons, because we Mormons should know better — this sort of behavior amounts to fiddling while Rome burns.
The irony of Mormonism is that our belief in one priesthood and one authority is founded upon one of the most eclectic doctrinal foundations of any religion — eclectic enough to include the Sabellianism of Abinadi in the Book of Mormon and the Binitarianism of Sydney Rigdon in the Lectures of Faith and the Council of Gods of Joseph Smith’s later views and the Adam-God doctrine of Brigham Young’s late Utah period and the Tri-theistic view of the Talmage-era that has more recently prevailed.
This eclecticism, aptly captured by Joseph’s express repudiation of creeds, makes all of us cafeteria Mormons, and this is a rich heritage that we should embrace with pride. I believe that many Bloggernacle participants do embrace this aspect of Mormonism. Even so, I continue to wish that more would. And if some among us insist on their own unilateral view of Mormonism, you won’t hear me calling that “balance.”