The Second Year of The Pierian Spring: 2011 in Review
I’m sure many of you are too busy to be reading the blogs today. I’m writing on New Year’s Eve. It’s the day when people are busy involved in festivities with family and friends. But I would like to take some time to reflect on this year’s comings and goings.
The year 2011 has been very eventful. I was invited to post at Faith-Promoting Rumors—my sort of test run with group blogging. It’s been great. I feel good about the posts I’ve written this year.
- The Saint Pauls of Mormonism (technically 2010 but I still snuck it in)
- God, Self and Spiritual Birth: Two Perspectives
- Roberts and Descartes
- Spiritual Birth: Challenges for Historians
- Givens on Atonement, Agency, and the War in Heaven
- Spiritual Birth: Challenges for Philosophers
- After the Lesson: “God Is No Respecter of Persons”
- Reflecting on Two Years of Gospel Principles 2010-2011
Especially with my post on the ending of the Gospel Principles manual, I really appreciate all the comments and people reading my post.
Thankfully, I’ve also found time to continue with my Understanding the Fall in Mormonism series. This series is not completed yet and I envision at least two, perhaps three, more posts. This has been a wonderful experience for me. I was hoping to have this completed by the time Latter-day Saints start thinking about the Fall again this year.
- Understanding the Fall in Mormonism – Part III: Adam to Michael
- Understanding the Fall in Mormonism – Part IV: The Fall of Man Meets the Plurality of Worlds
- Understanding the Fall in Mormonism – Part V: From Sin to Transgression
This year I was invited to participate as part of one of the bloggers for the Joseph Smith Papers Blogging Event. Blair does an excellent job covering this event. This led to me being invited to write a review for the Turley and Slaughter volume. I’m already behind on writing reviews for other books.
- The Unfolding of Revelation: Reflections on the Joseph Smith Papers
- Richard Turley and William Slaughter’s How We Got the Book of Mormon
2011 was a wonderful time of scholarship, navel gazing, and debates about Mormon theology, the beginning of a new academic journal of Mormonism, and several great books, interviews, and other posts.
One of my favorite posts this year came from Ben Park titled Scholarship as “Intellectual Kinship”: Richard Bushman’s Vision for the Academic Community. I like Ben’s post because, although I’m not a religious studies scholar, I feel I belong to this community of thinkers.
One thing that happened this year was I began to work quite a bit. It is a great blessing, especially during this time of economic turmoil and uncertainty, but in another respect I’ve missed being able to spend more time engaging in conversations and discussions about the things of greatest import. I haven’t had time to respond or participate in discussions about Grant Hardy’s Understanding the Book of Mormon, or Taylor Petrey’s Dialogue article, or Adam Miller’s discussions of James Faulconer’s book, or Joseph Spencer’s post on reading the scriptures, or write a review of Charles Harrell’s This Is My Doctrine, or several other books on my reading list. Not to mention that there have been several really solid podcast interviews, some I’ve just barely gotten around to listening and others still on my list.
This is where I find consolation and comfort in my friends. Those friends of mine I can call on my way home from work and discuss some new book that has come out or talk about how we find some statement made at church frustrating. It’s been wonderful. I can speak with or chat or email with my friends that I’ve met through blogging than I could with people I know in “real life.” So thank you, and thanks to all who read and lurk out there and to those to make comments and even argue with my reasoning. It all enhances the quality of life. I look forward to next year.