Friday, December 01, 2006

Insiders & outsiders


“I realize that Joe Mormon has similar parts on his side of the equation. He's unconvinced by F.F. Bruce, at least to the extent Bruce disagrees with the LDS Prophets. IN my experience, he doesn't suppose McConkie is going to convince me all by itself, as for him he relies on his interpretations of his scriptures and his own personal/metaphysical experiences.”

The unspoken assumption here is that insiders are impervious to outside criticism and vice versa.

But this is obviously false. Where Mormonism is concerned, there are cradle Mormons who are conversant with the wider world of scholarship, and this has had an impact on their belief-system.

That accounts, in part, for controversies over academic freedom at BYU due to tensions between the faculty and the hierarchy.

Then there are cradle Mormons who come to agree with the Christian countercult literature and leave their hereditary faith entirely.

And, of course, this isn’t limited to Mormonism. There are outsiders who convert to Christianity, as well as insiders who deconvert.

The same could be said of other religions and ideologies. Insiders and outsiders can change places.

The opposing positions are not incommensurable. And it’s not as if there’s a firewall between insiders and outsiders which prevents intellectual and theological immigration or emigration. To the contrary, the traffic flows both ways.

No comments:

Post a Comment