Mormon Apologists have long pointed out that one criticism of the Book of Mormon is its use of the female name Alma for a male’s name. After citing the criticism, Mormon Apologists immediately follow up with evidence of Alma’s use as a Male name in the ancient eastern world. But is this really an argument being made that deserves a rebuttal? Was Alma really only a female name in Joseph Smith’s day? Did he know any male Alma’s? And are LDS Leaders and Apologists honest around this issue? That and more and your phone calls on this episode of Mormonism LIVE !
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4 Replies to “Mormonism LIVE !: 004: The Rise And Fall of Alma the Apologetic”
New here, so I don’t know anything about you or Bill or your pasts other than what you’ve shared on these four broadcasts, but I’ve enjoyed the thoughtful, researched content and discussions you’re providing – so, thanks!
Dave, the caller asked if current leaders know truth but show a different facade given their position or job. I think, much like an amazing parallel to American politics, most TBMs are oblivious either because they don’t care or consciously chose to be ignorant and are much more comfortable not peeling back the layers. Why dig deep if “everything is fine?” It is also much easier and more necessary for most to deal with your daily to-do than it is to think about these larger themes.
When there is engagement it’s primarily within the scope of prescribed sourcing, whether it be faith or politics. What has resulted is in effect a construction of alternate realities, that once submitted to is hard to escape. If you only digest content from within your bubble that supports your views, it’s easy to be dismissive of everything else, especially when presented with “facts” and “truth” that counter what you “know.”
Ignorance can be bliss, and I submit that most TBMs fall into this category which is why the fallout is sometimes extreme when the bubble is popped. So I posit that most GAs or politicians dismiss outright these discussions and remain comfortable in their ignorant reality, particularly when the benefit is power, money or “blessings.”
Lay members or voters keep riding the train, erroneously thinking that one day it’ll be them with all that influence, money, power, or blessings so the alternate reality is imperative to perpetuate, not to mention the minute subject of eternal progression or damnation.
Technical points and specific references regarding the name “Alama” and it’s usage in the region are discussed more fully on the Discuss Mormonism board in this thread:
It seems quite apparent that Smith knew others by the name of Alma.
(Top 10 Falsifiable FAIRMORMON Claims)
QUESTION for Daniel C Peterson:
Is it likely that Joseph Smith knew of another male living in his vicinity/environment by the name of Alma?
Do a google maps search between Palmyra or Manchester in NY, Alma, NY, and Harmony, PA where JS met Emma – pretty much a straight line, but who knows the most convenient travel road in the period. Alma Hill is also nearby. Is this coincidence? Probably, but it shows how many easy explanations could be given making this whole deal with Alma, as you say, a nothingburger.