Saturday, February 26, 2011

Conference Preview

The Conference in Claremont is coming quickly. You can find the program here. Here is what I am looking forward to:

1. Having the chance to be the only one to present a remotely pro war point of view based on The Book of Mormon. I don't have abstracts from the other papers but their titles suggest a non violent reading of the book. I'm not quite sure where Madsen and the others create a pacifist point of view but I look forward to seeing their arguments. It will create an endless amount of posts for me here I'm sure. I also don't have the C.V.s of those involved but I think I am the only qualified military history there. (Of course they are qualified in other ways which is why it's called a "perspectives" conference.)

2. Meeting several other veterans. I seem to be the only enlisted member there but there is a veteran General Authority, a Major, and and two chaplains. Its been an amazing two years since I left and I still miss it.

3. Listening to many of the presentations such as: "Gaza in The Book of Mormon", "Zion as a Refuge from the Wars of Nations: Cultural Resource or Impediment?", "Pacifist Counselor in the First Presidency: J. Reuben Clark, 1933–61","'The Work of Death': Hugh Nibley and War", and pretty much everything about The Book of Mormon.

I plan on taking copious notes as long as I'm there since I still have a trip to Disney Land and a return trip with my daughter to consider. I am afraid this may turn into one big hippie love fest but I still look forward to the presenting, raising my profile, and discussing military matters.


Diana said...

Hippie love fest eh? How do you figure? I won't lie, I'm not a big war fan, but I do agree that there are a couple good reasons for going to war. Which are outlined in the Book of Mormon, and I'm sure you'll hit all of them in your lecture! I'd love to hear it, will there be a recording of it posted anywhere?

Morgan Deane said...

It is fairly easy and obvious to read a pretty basic pro war message in the BoM. I'm thinking of such scriptures as Alma 43:47-

And again the Lord has said that: Ye shall defend your families even unto bbloodshed. Therefore for this cause were the Nephites contending with the Lamanites, to defend themselves, and their families, and their lands, their country, and their rights, and their religion.

And there have a been a great many arguments over the years leading all the way to Hinckley's 2003 statement that again supports the wars that we fight.

Finally most of the church membership in the past and present have support America's military conflicts. (To a degree, early church members thought the Civil War was a just punishment delivered from God against the country that banished them.)

So when I see a scriptoral and cultural blessing for war compared to a program dominated by presentations such as "A Pacifist Manifesto" I have to wonder what the "slant" of the conference will be. Outside of that comment I was trying to be diplomatic. But I really get the feeling this will be a liberal anti war fest pretty unreflective of Mormon scripture and culture but very reflective of the bias within academia.

Hope that makes sense.

David J. West said...

Hippie love fest hahahaha awesome.

Have a good one Morgan-wish I could be there to support part because I do cringe over the pacifist rewriting of history.

Mormon Heretic said...

I wish I could attend! Good luck!