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Rational Faiths
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"I don’t see it as a stretch for this world wide church to simply provide a confidentiality check box in the online donation form for members to take advantage of should they feel inclined to do so. For even according to the newsroom we are operating on the honor system, aren't we?" -- Brian D. pushes for full confidentiality in our tithing donations

Money is a touchy topic. I remember feeling really uncomfortable towards the end of graduate school when a classmate of mine would openly ask recently hired employees of various chemical companies what their starting salaries were. I understand his…
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TW: Infertility and loss "...Now that I’m on the other side of the infertility journey, a success story I suppose, I approach Mother’s Day every year looking back. Because I won’t ever forget the exquisite pain of those years. And I see the women still there, and I want to reach out to them..." Leah Marie remembers the pain of dealing with infertility on Mother's Day.

Mother’s Day is approaching, and for me this means an annual pilgrimage through memories of past Mother’s Days. I’ve never really been able to grasp the celebration of the day, because all I can remember is how painful it once was, and how painful it is…
Mother’s Day is approaching, and for me this means an a ...
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"...Do we, as children of Heavenly Parents, provide perspective that they might not have noticed? Do they continue learning and growing as a result of their interactions with us, as I have grown and changed through interactions with my own children?" -- Michael Barker discusses, musicals, Storm Troopers, and evolving Gods.

As the lights dimmed in North Medford High School’s Sjolund Auditorium, my nine year daughter put her little hand in mine and with my other I held my wife’s hand. Captain von Trapp blew his whistle for the youngest to step forward. “I’m Gretel!” My…
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"Another set of questions for the good Doctor to answer: rekindling the desire that seems to have been lost soon after marriage and how to think about fantasy in a monogamous sexual relationship."

In this episode of “Ask a Mormon Sex Therapist”, Laurel and Brian talk with  Dr. Jennifer Finlayson-Fife on the topics of rekindling the desire that seems to have been lost soon after marriage and how to think about fantasy in a monogamous sexual…
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"...you're simply supposed to live "happily every after". The end! We seem to forget about the villains and danger and peril that happen along the way. Or we minimize them because "we have the spirit to help us..." Carrie Marsh contemplates what a fairytale really entails.

I write to you after spending three very magical and tiring days in Disneyland. We’ve done princesses and rollercoasters and traumatized our children (the older ones on Tower of Terror, the youngest one on the ladybugs in the Bug’s Life area).  Hopefully,…
I write to you after spending three very magical and ti ...
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"...Of course you remember or at least have heard stories about when the announcement came about how our Heavenly Parents had sent Mary, Mary Magdalene, and Esther to restore the Priestesshood..." Brother Slow reminisces about the future.

The following is a talk I gave, but the computer file is somewhat corrupted, so some areas were lost as indicated by the bracketed text. Today I’ve been asked to speak about the restoration of God’s authority. I know that people like Sister [lost] or…
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"We can only confirm but not deny that which we want to believe." -- We discuss Confirmation Bias as a human and a Mormon phenomenon.

Continuing our series “The Human Mormon Mind,” we had the chance to gather a wonderful panel, consisting of Brian Dillman, Laurel Sandberg-Armstrong, Brian Kissell, and Paul Barker in order to discuss the topic of confirmation bias. We discuss the bias in…
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"...Allyship is earned through hard conversations with people who use phrases like “love the sinner, hate the sin” and “living the gay lifestyle” and “chooses to be that way” and “counterfeit marriages." Allyship is earned through reading and listening and reflecting." Allyship is earned by speaking the truth with love..." -- Jerilyn Hassell Pool talks about the All Arizona Conference in Mesa, Arizona and the difficult work of being a gay ally.

  Over the last weekend, I attended the third annual All Arizona conference in Mesa, a conference for promoting greater love and understanding of LGBT/SSA Mormons. While I’ve been aware of the conference since its inception, this was the first year I was…
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"...We have all chosen different instruments that have a unique sound quality and a unique part to play, but when we work together with a common goal, with some direction from the conductor, we are able to create something more than our individual selves..." Daniel and his daughter share their love of music and of people.

  I was invited to attend a drum circle recently by a close friend. It was held in a suburban back yard in south Salt Lake valley. I’ve been to drum circles before, so I knew what to expect, but I’d never been to one like this. Drum circles are based on…
  I was invited to attend a drum circle recently b ...
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"...While it is a futile effort to try and guess with any accuracy who will be selected to fill any vacancies, a few of us here at Rational Faiths (Laurel, Leah Marie, and Thomas) thought we would ask the question: If the various Mormon contingencies could present possible candidates for apostleship, who would they choose?..."

Though Mormons don’t like to outright say it, it’s pretty clear that it won’t be too long before we’ll have some new apostles among the 12. While it is a futile effort to try and guess with any accuracy who will be selected to fill any vacancies, a few of…
Though Mormons don’t like to outright say it, it& ...
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"My 'testimony' (whatever that really means) is as valid and strong as anyone else in my ward, stake, or the church. That it is different and unique from many others does not make it inferior." -- James Patterson takes a stand on his new faith outlook.

It’s great to have people around you who care about you enough to “check in” on you in the midst of a faith crisis. I’ve been lucky enough to have people like that in my life. At first I really needed it. It was important to me. But there comes a point…
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On Sunday our high councilor spoke during Sacrament Meeting. It was an excellent talk that I feel should be shared with as many people as possible. Personal information has been removed, but otherwise the talk is here as it was given. Italicized emphases…
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"[Brigham], it is my church as much as it is yours" - Robert Gardner to Brigham Young
Introduction

The three Barker brothers would often engage in private e-mails  and phone calls with each other and their friends about Mormonism. The three decided it would be more fun to create a blog where all their friends and family could get  together and hammer out some of the idiosyncrasies of Mormonism. Here they hope to provide a safe, fair, and balanced space to discuss the complexities, difficulties, and beauty of their Mormon tradition.