Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Best Rock & Roll Voices

1.  Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin) - Immigrant Song
2.  Eddie Veder (Pearl Jam) - Better Man
3.  Freddie Mercury (Queen) - Another One Bites The Dust
4.  Axl Rose (Guns-n-Roses) - Sweet Child o'Mine
5.  Ozzy Osbourne - Diary of a Mad Man
6.  Layne Staley (Alice in Chains) - Man in the Box
7.  Scott Weiland (Stone Temple Pilots-Plush and Velvet Revolver-Slither)
8.  Brandon Flowers (The Killers) - Blackball
9.  James Hetfield (Metallica) - Enter Sandman
10. Brian Johnson (AC/DC) - Back in Black

Who did I miss?  Who would you put in?  Or in a different order?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

A response to Bishop Kelly...

Dear Bishop Kelly, 

I apologize for not being able to answer your response sooner.  I have been on vacation for the last few weeks but am back now and see that you posted a response to my query about "How to deal with doubt."  (For other readers, HERE is my original post).  

Here was your reply to my posting:

"When it comes down to it, we sustain ALL the words of the prophet:  D&C 21:4-5
4 Wherefore, meaning the church, thou shalt give heed unto all his words and commandments which he shall give unto you as he receiveth them, walking in all holiness before me;
5 For his word ye shall receive, as if from mine own mouth, in all patience and faith.

It comes down to exercising faith in the prophet (as it says "in all patience and faith").

It really seems sad that you're willing to let apostasy grow in your heart just because you lack faith. Be careful! You're basing your decisions on some assumptions that are incorrect and thus your logic is flawed. But faith isn't about logic, is it?

Related reading that I recommend you read: New Era » 1971 » November
"An Open Letter to Students: On Having Faith and Thinking for Yourself, by C. Terry Warner

Bishop Kelly

I contemplated just emailing one of your kids on Facebook and sending my response to you via email but I figured since you chose to publicly post a comment by signing it with your ecclesiastical position of power, as if giving you an authoritative right or responsibility to chastise my lack of faith and present apostasy, while yet failing to realize that my entire post exposed my doubt and distrust of the Prophetic mantle, much less, the revelatory powers found in the calling of a local Bishop and...You were never my bishop.

Maybe in all of my apostasy I missed the revelation organizing the formation of wards in the blogosphere requiring online Bishops and hence, giving you a stewardship to reply as "Bishop."  I'm sure that if you were replying as a friend or brother in the gospel, you simply would have signed as "Brother" or "Dave."  

Setting aside that for a moment.  I do thank you for the time you took to investigate and send me an article to read.  I read it and it was interesting.  While I thought it was predictable to be personally accused of using incorrect assumptions and flawed logic, I found it most humorous to then read an article by a former BYU philosophy professor richly laden with numerous incorrect assumptions and pathetically flawed logic.  Imagine the irony...

And FYI, you know what his answer was after all his little clever and witty analogies that worked about as well as a Creationist teaching evolution?  Repent and read the scriptures. That is the key to overcoming intellectual doubt and lack of spiritual faith?  REALLY?  Because, of course, anyone who is having any type of doubt MUST be sinning...that's the only logical reason for a person to have doubt in this perfect organization we belong to.

Newsflash.  Here's a gospel truth:  We're ALL sinners.  

Many, like yourself I assume, apparently see no inconsistencies, errors, mistakes, or lies in any part of Mormon history or present.  I applaud you for your dedication.  Some (like myself for many years) choose to ignore the many and varied inconsistencies found all throughout our history and doctrine.  I just figured that I had prayed, had the warm-fuzzies, and that all of my questions would be answered eventually.  Eventually never came and it wasn't for a lack of inquiry.  Is a decade not long enough to wait?  Lord, forgive my impatience...

You and I will never reach a conclusion on this.  I could give you quote after quote from Prophets who made ludicrous, racist, sexist, and preposterous statements.  You'd bat them away like a mosquito. You already have the conclusion so you make the history fit to get you there.  You refuse to admit that any Prophet has ever been wrong.  They are as infallible as the Pope.  We must obediently follow and sustain every word.  

I'll even put words in your mouth here, only because your rebuttal is horribly predictable..."Even if they are wrong, it is our responsibility to follow them and the consequences will be upon the shoulders of our leaders if they have led us astray."  And though you sarcastically mocked my opinion of faith and logic in your response, it is this very mentality that makes faith illogical.  It is why Holy Crusades brought death or conversion and why religious zealots fly planes into buildings...

Let me ask you this.  

If Gordon B. Hinckley had come to you, when your daughters were 14-16 years of age and explained that 'Celestial Marriage' was to be re-instituted and told your daughter that if she would marry him that "If you will take this step, it will ensure your eternal salvation & exaltation and that of your father’s household & all of your kindred." 

Are you okay with that?  Are you thinking about faith or logic at this point?

Or what if Thomas S. Monson called you to leave your family and go serve a mission and while you were gone, he came to your home, taught the doctrine of plural marriage and told your wife that "the Lord had made it known to him she was to be his celestial wife."  You would have returned home from faithfully serving the Lord to realize you had been blessed by having the Prophet marry your wife while you were gone.

Would that build your faith?  Or would you "let apostasy grow in your heart just because you lacked faith"?

I only include these two items of history because they are tend to spark emotion.  I believe faith is more closely tied with emotion than logic.  Logic can remove emotion and still function.  Faith cannot remove emotion and function efficiently.  

With regards to my doubts, we could talk about everything from blacks and the Priesthood to DNA evidences of the Book of Mormon (or the lack thereof) to LDS positions on evolution and the list goes on and on.  The point is this:  I do not believe I will ever resolve ALL of my doubts regarding the inconsistencies found within the religion.  

How then do I retain my membership and testimony if my religion cannot expand on fundamental matters of our faith, like, how the creation occurred but it then presumes to tell me how God wants me to vote in matters of local civil legislation?

I believe in God.  I have faith in Jesus Christ.  My greatest hope is that there actually is bridge to connect the islands of faith and reason.  While the two appear as incompatible forces, seemingly working in opposition, I remain eagerly waiting how I can reconcile.

I reiterate my initial query (that was only answered by calls to repentance & scripture reading) - Is there a value in having a "current LIVING PROPHET & MOUTH PIECE OF GOD" if I:
A)  Cannot trust what they are saying, or
B)  Cannot determine when they speak in official capacity?

Yet here we come to our vicious circle again because you believe everything that comes out of his mouth is the mind and will of the Lord...and I don't.  Of course, I have logic and evidence on my side.  You have faith.

We stand at an impasse...but not really.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Meet The Mobsters...via Hulu

I'm a sucker for any mobster movie.  This one had me laughing.  Not quite Mickey Blue Eyes...but still pretty funny.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Donkey Kong...oh yeah!

Arrow keys for left and right, space bar to jump. It may take you to their website to play but you can play large screen there. Unfortunately it's only one level...but it's fun.

Click to Play!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A couple of fun websites, part 3...

Pandora - Great streaming music based on categories that YOU create.


Food Porn Daily - "Click, drool, repeat."  Dishes that will make you salivate.  Great photography, recipes.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July

The Star Spangled Banner by Faith Hill

America the Beautiful by Ray Charles

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

— John Hancock

New Hampshire:
Josiah BartlettWilliam WhippleMatthew Thornton

John HancockSamuel AdamsJohn AdamsRobert Treat PaineElbridge Gerry

Rhode Island:
Stephen HopkinsWilliam Ellery

Roger ShermanSamuel HuntingtonWilliam WilliamsOliver Wolcott

New York:
William FloydPhilip LivingstonFrancis LewisLewis Morris

New Jersey:
Richard StocktonJohn WitherspoonFrancis HopkinsonJohn HartAbraham Clark

Robert MorrisBenjamin RushBenjamin FranklinJohn MortonGeorge Clymer,James SmithGeorge TaylorJames WilsonGeorge Ross

Caesar RodneyGeorge ReadThomas McKean

Samuel ChaseWilliam PacaThomas StoneCharles Carroll of Carrollton

George WytheRichard Henry LeeThomas JeffersonBenjamin HarrisonThomas Nelson, Jr.Francis Lightfoot LeeCarter Braxton

North Carolina:
William HooperJoseph HewesJohn Penn

South Carolina:
Edward RutledgeThomas Heyward, Jr.Thomas Lynch, Jr.Arthur Middleton

Button GwinnettLyman HallGeorge Walton

Thursday, July 2, 2009

July 1st - July 12th...Hiking in Glacier National Park

If you'd like to see a preview, visit Nicole's post here.

But not to worry, I won't leave you without ways to start your day off with a smile.  Using a old jimmy-rigged sprinkler timer, I'll provide a daily time waster, scheduled to go off every morning.

Here is today's offering:

Space Invaders