Author: Dan Wotherspoon

358–359: Improving Our Conversations about Important and Emotional Topics

How many times have we inadvertently offended a person or group of persons because we simply aren’t thinking about how the things we say might strike them? Because we are in a hurry? Because we are writing or speaking while…

356–357: (Encore) A Christmas Primer: Exploring the Nativity in Scripture, Legend, History, and Hearts

This is an encore presentation of a December 2011 podcast episode examining the Christmas story as it traditionally gets told—looking closely at what the scriptures actually say and do not say about the birth of Christ and all the pieces…

355: Personal and Spiritual Renewal Following a Difficult Election Season

Many people are feeling beat-up emotionally and spiritually right now on the heels of such a difficult and ugly election season. Regardless of whether “our” preferred candidate won or not, the election campaign generated great divisiveness, often causing breakdowns in relationships with…

353–354: Championing the “Addiction” Paradigm with Regard to Pornography/Sex Addiction

This two-part episode is a response to a panel of therapists and a neuroscientist who in an earlier episode (347–348) challenge the idea that pornography is physically addicting, suggesting instead that problematic pornography usage is a symptom of deeper issues…

351-352: “The Policy”—One Year Later

On Thursday afternoon, November 5th, 2015, a leak of new directives regarding LGBT Latter-day Saints was made public, kicking off a tumultuous year within many Mormon circles. What came to be known informally as “The Policy” required stake leaders to excommunicate…

Announcing a New Survey about LDS LGBT Policies

Let your views be heard about current LDS policies and teachings about LGBT persons and issues! Two social psychologists, Michael Nielsen and David Wulff, have launched a survey with the hope of learning from all across the spectrum of belief…

350: The LDS Church’s New Mormon and Gay Website

On October 25, 2016, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a new website, “Mormon and Gay” (www.mormonandgay.lds.org) an update of its previous site articulating LDS positions on various aspects of same-sex attraction. What is the new site like?…

349: The Leaked Videos: A Church That Is Also a Corporation

On October 2nd 2016, the final day of the LDS Church’s October General Conference, a dozen or so videos were leaked online that show the briefings of various topics given to the church’s top leadership, and one of a general staff meeting of the…

347-348: Challenging the “Addiction” Paradigm with Regard to Pornography

The past two weeks featured two opposing Op-Eds in the Salt Lake Tribune (here and here) focusing on the issue of pornography, and especially if an “addiction” model (“pornography is highly addicting”) is appropriate to be taught in high school settings. The…

346: Intimacy in Mormon Marriages

Mormon theology, including temple covenants, along with pulpit and lesson rhetoric and cultural and community discourse place a strong emphasis on the family. It also focuses on our becoming as fully like God as we can, including perfecting the combination…

345: Dialogue at Fifty!–Part 2: Present and Future

We are excited to continue our celebration of the 50thanniversary of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought through a conversation with its current editor, Boyd Jay Petersen, its immediate past editor, Kristine Haglund, and current Dialogue board member and one…

344: Dialogue at Fifty!—Part 1: History

Something wonderful with long-lasting effect on Mormonism began in 1966 with the publication of the inaugural issue of Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought. Beginning as a dream made into reality by five friends at Stanford University, Dialogue went on…

343: An Exciting Approach to Scripture

A new book edited by Julie M. Smith, As Iron Sharpens Iron: Listening to the Various Voices of Scripture, does  something wonderful. It takes something we all “kind of” know–that not every verse of scripture fits together in perfect harmony with…

342: Mormon Women’s Position and Organization Names and Titles

The Summer 2016 edition of the online journal SquareTwo features the results and a discussion of a recent poll of Mormon women about the ways that LDS women’s organizations are referred to, and about the names and titles of women’s…

341: Teachings about War in the Book of Mormon

As the LDS Sunday School Gospel Doctrine curriculum turns in coming weeks to the later chapters of the book of Alma and the stories they contain about Captain Moroni, the Stripling Warriors, along with various wars and war strategies, assassinations,…

339-340: Mercy and the Atonement

This episode (in two parts) is a continuation of an earlier discussion of Mercy (Episode 332, March 2016) but also very different, focusing this time on “mercy” as it functions for so many as a theological concept rather than the…

Announcing A Mormon Matters Retreat: Navigating a Healthy Mormon Journey

Listen to the following conversation about this upcoming Mormon Matters retreat and others that take place under the Open Stories Foundation umbrella and that will be announced soon! A MORMON MATTERS RETREAT! “Navigating a Healthy Mormon Journey” Led by Natasha…

338: Mormons and Humor

Are Mormons funny? Do we Mormons have a good sense of humor—in general, or, more importantly, when it focuses on ourselves? In introducing Mormonism to those who are outside the faith and attempting to share how the gospel and Mormon life make…

337: The Next Mormons

Standout Mormon author, scholar, and commentator Jana Riess is working on her next book, which will focus on Mormonism’s “Millennial” generation (those now between ages 18 and 35) and their spirituality, religiosity, views and attitudes toward aligning with institutions, and…

336: The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy

In this episode, author Carol Lynn Pearson joins Mormon Matters host, Dan Wotherspoon, for a one-on-one conversation about her new and extremely powerful book, The Ghost of Eternal Polygamy: Haunting the Hearts and Heaven of Mormon Women and Men. In…