I registered for classes & I’ve been fighting with financial aid at Utah Valley University. School starts Monday. I’m pretty excited a just a little scared. I haven’t been in class for quite some time & from what I’ve been told, the classroom dialectic has changed.
The free & open exchange of ideas is no longer an option. Some speech by some students is not welcome.
I’ve decided if my voice is not welcome in a particular discussion, then I’ll keep it under my hate & dialogue with the teacher through email. I don’t want to cause a fuss & I also don’t want some younger students to feel like I’m the enemy.
Regarding my Boyd K. Packer research, I’m still working a bit every day. I’m slowly proceeding, but eventually, I’ll be able to start publishing papers.
Related to this, I’m going to be doing a load of volunteer hours working for a new on campus religious studies journal that’s yet to be named & I’m going to start working directly with Boyd Peterson, an editor on Dialogue, a Mormon Studies literary journal. I’m pretty stoked.
Fat Mo here and sorry for not posting what day I’m on in my WordPress posting history and the title definitely does not mean this is my twenty-second post, just that I’ve now been blogging and researching Boyd K. Packer (BKP) for twenty-two days simultaneously. Slight clarification.
I’ve been focusing on BKP’s last year speaking and publishing articles. I only have three examples: a General Conference talk and two Ensign Magazine articles. BKP’s talk and one of the articles are similar. Both examples discuss the Atonement and marriage. One of BKP’s statements at conference caught my eye:
“The end of all activity in the Church is to see that a man and a woman with their children are happy at home, sealed together for time and all eternity” (Packer. pg 26).
BKP says the church’s program’s purpose is establishing strong families under LDS parameters. The sermon gives a little biographical information about the Packers and then delves into the nitty-gritties of LDS courtship, marriage, children, exceptions to doctrine, trials & tribulations, sin & transgression, and the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the Atonement’s role in all marriages (LDS or not).
This is BKP’s last talk before he dies that summer.
It is a great talk. Better to read, then listen to, because BKP was quite old and ill and gave his talk from his seat. His voice is rough and course sounding and lacking a lot of the strength of his past addresses. I highly recommend reading it (here).
I’ve completed the physical examination and a tight reading of the text and I’m working over the data now and tomorrow, I’ll create the content index. Next, I am going to combine the three text samples and then look for parallels in the texts.
Boyd K. Packer. Ensign; May 2015 Conference Addresses. “The Plan of Happiness.” R. Val Johnson, ed. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, 2015
Fat Mo here & I’m at church. Early. For the last three days I’ve been working through an article in April 2015’s Ensign called, “The Savior’s Selfless and Sacred Sacrifice”. The article is based on Boyd K. Packer’s (BKP) understanding of the Atonement. The article is long, approximately 2400 words and I focused on 1137 of those words as most of the others were words of no special mark (for now).
The pattern I’ve noticed the most is the article, in part, reads like a list poem. Obviously, BKP loves the Atonement & what it does for all humanity. I am examining his last conference talk before his death this week also. It isn’t nearly as long, but has much the same feel to it where BKP focuses on what he considers is the most important aspect of the church’s entire program: marriage in the temple and the miracle of the Atonement as it applies to married people.
This is way short. I drove all over the place today, but while at Deseret Industries today, I bought a new Boyd K. Packer book, The Holy Temple. I haven't started reading it yet, but I did read & itemized another chapter in BKP's Teach Ye Diligently & worked some more in The Things of the Soul.
Fat Mo here, and I'm still working on my Boyd K. Packer research. I'm writing this from 500 North Provo in front of the Mighty Baker where my son works as a pastry chef. I'm waiting to pick him up & take him up to the Restaurant Depot in Salt Lake. Tonight & for the next couple days, I want to go over a few insights in how BKP defines LDS concepts differently than what I'm accustomed to. These subtle differences are what I'm looking for. Thanks for being patient. Fat Mo.
Fat Mo here and I didn’t post yesterday. Things happen, but I did do some reading when I could. Yesterday was so busy, I never got a chance to see who won the final Tour de France stage race. I didn’t see who won or how Chris Froome did. I do have Google, so I know the results, but it’s not the same.
I thought of two questions yesterday:
Why does Boyd K. Packer (BKP) write in passive voice so often?
Is BKP the wheat thresher, winnower, or the watcher of the wheat field? Or, which role does he play most often?
I slept in this morning ’cause I can on Saturday mornings for a little bit and ’cause I watched Star Wars; Rogue One on Netflix way into the night. When I woke up, I read some more into The Things of the Soul (BKP, 1996) and while doing so, I thought of the second question set a bit more. While I have my suspicions of which role BKP plays for the LDS Church as a leader and speaker, I need to verify this role through more research.
Fat Mo here and today was busy with just the daily type of busy work one normally does: oil change, aquarium water change, baby sitting, chauffeuring family, watching the Tour de France etc..
I did work on an Ensign article written by Boyd K. Packer (BKP), appearing in the June 2015 issue called “Leave it Alone.” This article was about a friend of BKP’s, John, and some personal tragedy that befell him. BKP originally told the story in the October 1987 LDS General Conference.
When I am examining work by BKP, I am correlating keywords, frequently used words & phrases, index appropriate words, and extra-textual citations. Here is what I gleaned from this article:
Frequently used words & phrases (antecedents in parenthesis): he (John) x15, it (assumed) x8, I (John) x5, he (doctor) x4, John x4, his (John) x4, leave x4, the doctor x3, you (John) x3, me (BKP) x2, himself (John) x2, baby x2, Daddy x2, leader, spiritual x2, old man x2, a patient x2, grief x2, struggled x2, counsel x2, infection x2, crisis x2.
I’m not including a list of index appropriate words. That’d just be ridiculous at this time, but as time goes, I’ll start providing those words and concepts.
Here is the information from yesterday as a comparison:
Keywords: Boyd K. Packer, Teach Ye Diligently (book), Hobbies/Interests, Family, Teaching, Language, Career.
Frequently used words & phrases (antecedents in parenthesis): he (BKP) x36, his (BKP) x22, home x8, Elder Packer x7, children x6, book (TYD) x6, she (Packer, Donna) x5, I (BKP) x5, I (A. Theodore Tuttle) x5, him (BKP) x5, family x5, bird(s) x5, teaching, a x4, you (reader), x3, teacher(s) x3, parents x3, cat(s) x3, think(s) x2, teach(s) x2, Savior, the x2, paint(s,d) x2, Donna Packer x2, love(s) x2, love (familial) x2, learn(s,d) x2, interest(s) x2, gospel x2, father x2, draw(s) x2.
Citations: D&C 88:77-78
This is what I meant yesterday by “Am I doing too much?” I was just tired last night. I think I should be fine, but I am starting to see a clearer picture of BKP’s work.
Fat Mo here. I’m at church and typing from the pews on my iPhone. Today was great & one of the best openings to sacrament meeting in a long time: we had a convert confirmation. Last night, a teenager who lives in our ward boundaries got baptized & today, she was confirmed & welcomed as a new member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The ‘spirit‘ of today’s meeting is happy & quite joyous. I haven’t been to a convert confirmation sacrement meeting in a long time–since I lived in Korea.
I love coming to church. I know others find church difficult. I often do, but I always find joy at church.
This, I think is one of the reasons President Packer was so assertive/aggressive in his defense of the purity of the church: he honestly wanted church to be happy for everyone & recognized certain aspects of contemporary society makes church painful, guilt-inducing, rage-inducing, opposition-inspiring, & occasionally awful for people living philosophies & lifestyles counter to the doctrine, ethos, & principles to LDS Gospel & the will of God as stated by modern LDS prophets.
In my research this morning, I came across President Packer’s application of 2 Timothy 3:1-7:
1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
I have been guilty of some these in my life, but rarely directed at members of the church, mostly directed at people at school, work, and/or on the internet who insist on the stupidities of whatever orthodoxy they cling to instead of looking beyond their checklist world to seek the ‘truth‘.
Progress: I’ve been adding speeches, sermons, & Ensign articles written by President Packer from 1971 to 1985 & extracting the reference material he uses. Even though I didn’t blog about it, I worked on this project on Friday & Saturday this week between activities with friends and family as well as this morning before church.
My master document is getting huge & it’s only on my hard drive. I’m planning on breaking it up by year & saving it to Google Docs & Dropbox. I don’t have a working CD/DVD burner anymore, but I’m going to need one. Once I’m ready to, I’m going to be printing everything, but that won’t be for some time.
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Fat Mo here. I just finished watching Mississippi Burning starring William deFoe & Gene Hackman. It’s an impactful movie for me. I saw it originally in the Camp Humphreys’ movie theater in 1989. I know it is a fictionalized account of what happened, but I didn’t know that then. Fast forward two decades & I met Henry “Hank” Miles, a retired state
department employee who returned to Provo, Utah, climbed the ‘Y’ everyday, & took English Lit. & creative writing classes at UVSC (now UVU) for $5 a semester. During his youth, Hank was involved in the civil rights movement, going to marched & volunteering when he could.
The Civil Rights Era is an amazing time period for me. I missed it. Sure, I’m an Army Brat raised on Ft. Sill, OK, but in the 70s & 80s, the fire just wasn’t that hot anymore. Yes, I’ve witnessed racist acts & as I got older, I started acting against racism.
I want to know about President Packer’s experience & does it surface in his writings & sermons. I know his official biography deals with the Civil Rights Era & President Packer was a member of the Twelve when the revelation on the priesthood was received. What did he have to say about it?
I’ll let you know what I find.
Today: I am almost done with my document prep for all of President Packer’s sermons from 1970 to 1994 & I made some more progress on his book Teach Ye Diligently.
The progress is slow since I also get to watch two energetic & clever grandchildren as I research.
Thanks for reading. Please comment, like, & follow. I appreciate your support.