I would like to announce that the website www.ldsphilosopher.com has been restored to active duty. It has been completely renovated. We will be posting new content almost daily. Nathan Richardson and I are very excited about this. We’ve spent many months building the site theme and functionality from scratch, so if you encounter bugs or have questions, let me know in the comments here, so we can fix them. The following information is lifted from the “About” pages of the site. Be sure to read the About pages, as they contain useful information about the site’s purpose and functionality.
What is the Site About?
We explore the world of ideas through the lens of the LDS faith. While our focus is philosophy, we’ll dabble in almost all realms of academic thought. The Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ invites us to reconsider many of the assumptions we have about the world. As such, it is the lens through which we approach all of the subjects we write about. Our goal is not to bring philosophy into Latter-day Saint thought, but rather to contrast revealed truths with the philosophies of the world. We’ll compare insights found in ancient and modern-day revelation with the prevailing assumptions in science, religion, psychology, government, and maybe more.
We blogged for several years on all sorts of subjects related to philosophy and religion. Over time, however, it became clear that we are somewhat perfectionistic when it comes to writing. We kept raising our standards for how good a blog post had to be before we published it. Eventually, we had over a hundred drafts that we wanted to polish and then publish, but didn’t feel as if the ideas were complete or the expressed clearly enough yet. So, we have developed what we call a two-tier publishing system. There are two types of content on the site: (1) blog posts, and (2) articles.
We have low expectations and standards for blog posts. We’ll publish any random thought as a blog post, however incomplete, partially formed, or poorly expressed. In addition, they don’t represent our final thoughts on an issue. Old blog posts don’t always represent how we see things today. You can consider the blog posts on this site to be kind of like a “thought journal,” where you can witness first-hand the evolution of our ideas.
In contrast, we have very high expectations and standards for articles. We really want people to read our articles—they represent the best content on our site. They are featured at the top of the home page. We’ll work hard to make them thorough and understandable. We like the ideas in our articles so much that we’ve not only written about them, we’ve made clean PDF versions of them that you can download. Sometimes we’ll include a PowerPoint that you can use to present the ideas to your family and friends. We’ll sometimes even include a quiz that you can use to test how well you understand. Also, unlike blog posts, we’ll constantly update our articles when we learn more, so an article will always represent our latest perspective on an issue.
The Relationship Between Blog Posts and Articles
Often, blog posts will be refined and turned into an article. Sometimes, several blog posts will form the basis for an article. In Hollywood, there are many more movie scripts pitched to producers than are actually made into movies, and in the same way, we suspect there will be many more blog posts than articles. Blog posts can also be compared to the “behind the scenes” footage or even the “outtakes” in the making of a movie. They are where our ideas get formed and tested. Another useful metaphor is that our blog posts are the “restaurant napkins” where we jot down our initial thoughts whenever they come to us, and our articles are the finished product. In summary, read our articles. That’s where the really good stuff is. Our blog posts are just Nathan and Jeffrey thinking out loud (what some might call “thought-vomits”). When you visit a blog post that has been made into an article, you’ll find a link to that article to the right.
All of our old content has been retroactively turned into blog posts. Material that is good enough to become articles will be converted over the next few months.
When we publish an article (this likely won’t happen for blog posts), we’ll include a clean PDF version of the article that you can download or print. That way, in case of a global information apocalypse, you’ll still at least have access to Jeffrey and Nathan’s take on life, universe, and everything. Although I suspect that in that scenario, you’ll be preoccupied by much more pressing concerns. However, in the meantime, you could print it off and give it to others.
In addition, we’ll sometimes provide PowerPoint Presentation versions of our articles. This is because we really care about the content of our articles, and want to provide our readers with all the resources they need to not only understand the ideas we write about, but to share them with others. Additionally, we’ll also sometimes provide pedagogical tips that will help you to present and share what you’ve learned with your family and friends.