Lots of insights from MSH! (updated as I have time to add more notes)

There will be a whole ton, and they’ll be somewhat randomly ordered, but they will be tagged so I can find them again!

  • Ether 12: faith doesn’t always need to be quantified, or turned into something economic
  • Goal is to focus on Christ, not focus on faith.
    • Faith will come along the way, as a gift, as you seek for Christ. Seeking = open, ready to receive, looking,
  • “Faith is things” ??
    • Things are things AND more than things
    • Faith changes things?
    • Faith is in those very things around you but you see them differently, or you use them differently, or God uses them to teach you, etc.
    • Things = Christ’s body that he showed the Nephites?
  • “We receive the gift of faith by seeking Christ, not by seeking faith” (quoting Jenny here)
  • Ether 12:41 and Alma 32? similarities and differences…
    • faith is assumed, trust you can do things when faith is exercised. Not seeking faith, using faith.
    • Seek Christ/ plant word(Christ)
    • But Alma does see faith increasing. But then again, it’s a gift, and not what you were seeking after.


  • This is my description, after listening to Joe’s paper:
    • Sacred time= cyclical, Messianic time= future changes present (oriented to future, so linear), Secular time= just linear (no orientation)


  • word “history” only used 5 times in the Book of Mormon, and all are in small plates.
  • 2 Nephi 5, Nephi is very interested in boundaries of all kinds
  • (boundaries, history, these are secular questions)
  • First Nephi says history, then later more history part, then more particular
  • Maybe he sees that it’s tricky to separate secular and sacred
    • even when he separates them into two separate books it’s still hard to keep them a part!
  • Secular is supposedly neutral, but really, based on our discussions, we could say that secular = history+religion-religion?
  • That version is subtractive, but Nephi is additive (more history)
  • v. 32/33 pleased vs. desiring
    • admits there is a lack (of history) so some might desire history
  • Desire can disrupt sacred?
  • Lamanites have words like “seek” “toward” associated with them
    • v 19 disrupts sacred teaching
    • (note when Nephi desires something in ch 5 it is that he desires NOT to have kings)
  • Laman and Lemuel often a topic on large plates! During times when they are being lectured Nephi will stop and say that the rest of the lecture is on the large plates (Brilliant, brilliant insight by Kim!)
  • Plates sort of parallel the two groups (Lamanties/large plates and Nephitites/small plates)
  • But these divisions are overcome:
    • Book of Mormon is addressed to Lamanites
    • small/large plates are together now
  • Does a division of sacred and secular open up a space for us to do work of covenant, so we can seal it all back together in a better way?


  • BYU has a vision that Elder Holland talks about, where our spiritual life should make us better scholars, and our scholarship should make us grow in our spiritual life.
    • But, it’s hard to tell who has the vision and who doesn’t, and who can make that vision emerge in students and who can’t
    • Everyone has their own qualifications or clues
    • But maybe it’s more like Kierkegaard’s “Knight of Faith” – you can’t tell. Eats dinner the same, walks home the same, can’t tell that someone does the same things but in a different way, with a different heart, a different orientation


  • Maybe priesthood assignment itself is a circle of power for men? Given a huge task and told to figure it out!
  • Could be true too for all callings of course. Hmm


  • King Follett discourse is an example of the appeal to low/common Church mixed with High Church.
  • Introduced as if academic. Here are some thoughts, not here is doctrine or here is how to live your life
  • But rhetoric style is plain
  • but “refutes” ideas, like a paper
  • paragraph 12 has a hugely amazing doctrine, but the sentence structure treats it like it’s equal to the other things in the sentence!
  • Plain container fill it with radical ideas?
    • Family proclamation feels that way to me. Looks plain but full of radical ideas 🙂

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