BCC Zeitcast 4

Season 1 Album Artwork We’re back, folks!

This week: Brad gets deconstructed; Ronan dresses up; Steve goes green, and Amri worships the Devil. No Sumer Thurston Evans this week due to scheduling problems.

(Download here)

Links in this week’s Zeitcast:

1. Deconstructing the Book of Mormon

2. The Old Written Order of Things

3. Small Temples Promote Sustainable Living

4. Commentary: Mormon Environmental Ethic Explained for a General Audience (I hope)

5. Satanic Panic

Thanks for listening — please comment or email us with suggestions or tips for new sites or posts we should highlight in the next edition.


  1. Steve Evans says:

    My personal sense: it’s still too long. Thoughts?

  2. Yeah, a bit long. But still very engaging.

  3. Just think of the soundbits and mis-quotes the Anti’s can get from this! Woo-hooo!

    Nice job, guys and gals. I heart Ronan’s voice.

  4. I didn’t know there was a podcast related to BCC. Google results show that previous episodes (back to 2005) were hosted by Bloggernacle Times (which looks dormant). So is there some central archive of past episodes?

    I’d really like to know if there is an RSS feed that I can subscribe to in my podcast aggregator (iTunes).

  5. Steve Evans says:

    Gleaner, the magic of RSS feeds, itunes and such are still being worked out, but we’re planning on making it work. Previous eps were at BT, although BCC has dabbled in its own podcasts as well from time to time.

  6. FYI–Steve did some pretty sweet editing on this. The donkey that powers my internet down here in Iquitos fell over dead and I got kicked off the line and so they had to get a hold of John Dehlin (who kindly does our recording) so then we could put the phone call back together and finish the podcast. The donkey came back to life, though I’m not sure who’s responsible for it. Satan, maybe?

  7. Thanks for noticing.

    I’ll be addressing the issue of “Eat, drink and be merry, for Jesus will save us from environmental disaster” in an upcoming post.

    Green guilt-trips for all!

  8. I especially liked Brad’s comments about deconstructing the Book of Mormon. I’ve been batting around similar ideas lately. I agree that when we say the Book of Mormon is “true,” this shouldn’t requires us to believe that it represents a perfect record of God’s words. One can assume ancient authorship and still believe that the events and doctrines were not necessarily recorded with perfect historical fidelity.

    For example, Mosiah, Alma, Helaman, etc. may not have written their records until many years after the events they described, and Mormon did not abridge those records until centuries later. Stories that are told and retold tend to morph into epic tales of good and evil with archetypal characters and clear inspirational morals. B.H. Roberts thought that stories like the “2,000 stripling warriors who could not be killed” seemed too good to be true. But a belief in a historical Book of Mormon does not necessarily mandate a belief that not a single stripling warrior died, or that the prison walls literally fell down around Alma and Amulek. These stories represent moral tales retold hundreds of years after they occurred, and Mormon seemed to have certain lessons he wanted to underscore by retelling these stories. A belief in a historical Book of Mormon does not necessarily mandate a belief that all of Mormon’s views were right. (Disclaimer: This is actually from part of a comment I made on a different blog last month.)

    I think that if we introduce a verse from the Book of Mormon by saying “The Lord has said . . .” then we are failing to take the text seriously. Of course, it is kind of awkward to say that “Helaman, an inspired man, told this story which was probably recorded by Alma some years later, and Mormon reworked it again 400 years after that . . .”

    There is a whole other issue of how much influence Joseph Smith had the English text of the Book of Mormon during his translation; that is an issue for another thread, but it certainly is relevant to any attempt to deconstruct the text.

  9. That one was a little too long, and sometimes rambling (but it was entertaining rambling).

  10. Nice work!

  11. I just remembered an (admittedly apologetic) essay by Brant Garder at FAIR that is relevant to the “deconstruction” topic. It’s been a couple of years since I read it, and it’s too long for me to reread and summarize at the moment, but it’s worth checking out if you’re interested in the topic:


  12. Thanks. These are nice. Deconstructing the Book of Mormon also was my favorite. I get a bit upset at all of the anti-garbage thrown at the BofM, but then I remember that much of it is based on incorrect assumptions of members – past and present. That always helps.

  13. the RSS feed address, http://www.bycommonconsent.com/feed/atom/, is not working anymore!?! my blog reader revolteth!

  14. [With Wayne and Garth bows.] We’re legion not worthy!

  15. Kevin Barney says:

    I just listened to the podcast. On the old written order of things (I missed the original thread, and I just came back from the eye doctor with dilated eyes so I can’t really read anything), I distinctly remember when I was a deacon (this would have been very early 70s) that the bishop decided we were being too formalistic in the way we passed the sacrament. He said it was all too routinized. So he helped us to change things up and to not do it exactly the same way every time. I assume he must have been reading instructions something like those reflected in Ardis’ post.

  16. Neat.

    BTW “2,000 stripling warriors who could not be killed” ought to be read as 2,000 heavily armored men hit the fully engaged enemy in the rear by surprise.

    I’ll be writing about ancient battles, but the peak of one usually lasted fifteen minutes or so. Generally, what would have happened in such a fight is the enemy would have broken and the resistance would have been incidental.

    Casualty counts in such an encounter actually often did run at zero.

    I’m glad you enjoyed that, guess it is time to get the next one about Nephi, his boat and making slaves in the wilderness done.

  17. Interesting stuff. Thanks guys.

  18. I would love some technical advice. I’m having trouble getting this to play on my dial-up. Just when it gets to three minutes (sometimes eight) it starts all over again. Believe me, after ten introductions, I will never get your voices mixed up. I’ve got it down.

    I can listen to conference feeds and archived talks. But I can only listen to a phrase at a time on You-tube and most other videos. This isn’t video–thought it be fine. Any way to get it to play on my windows media player?

    I’m just so excited to hear what comes next!

  19. Steve Evans says:

    download the mp3 file, jami — don’t stream it.

  20. Can I do that without an mp3 player? (this is so embarrassing)

  21. yes, indeed. Windows Media Player, even, can handle it.

  22. Excellent focus you made with the Gospel of John for an example.

    i would note that every time the writers plead their weakness in writing they invite the question of how reliable a narrator they are. After all, they know that they are going to be read in translation by a later people, what is the real weakness that they are talking about?

    You really ought to type up your comments into an essay so that more people can reach and enjoy it.

    I will add that it is interesting to transpose Samuel the Lamanite’s perspective with Jacob’s text about how the Nephites are not more righteous than their brethren because of the way they treat their families.

    I’ve got to add that I’ve always thought the millennium will need a thousand years to clean up all the paperwork and all the pollution.

  23. Steve, your voice, its higher than I seem to recall. Are you a dose off on your hormone therapy?

    Who’s butt does one have to kiss to be on the zeitcast?

  24. William Morris says:

    As Brad Kramer started talking about deconstruction and the Book of Mormon, I was already writing a post on Samuel the Lamanite (one of my obsessions from a Mormon literature perspective). And then Brad has to go and ruin it all by bringing up the same point. Although all of you were a bit too hazy on what actually happens there: 3 Nephi 23

    But still — good stuff, Brad. I really enjoyed it and mostly agree with what you said.

    One thing that I think bears mentioning is that although reading the Book of Mormon as literature (and questioning narrator reliability) changes how we read the book as history, it doesn’t necessarily change how it’s often read by members — for utility. Those messages about faith, hope and charity and God’s plan for us are all still there to be adapted for/applied to one’s way of living.

  25. Steve Evans says:

    ED, all you have to do to get mentioned on the Zeitcast is write something interesting. Get cracking.

  26. I, for one, would like to see more uniformity in dress. I draw your attention to the following article published in the April 1933 Improvement Era.

    Highland Park Ward Sacrament Service


    WHITE shirts and black bow ties play an important part in the sacrament system of the Highland Park Ward of Granite Stake. Dark trousers complete the boy’s costumes. This has been the customary Sunday attire of the younger Lesser Priesthood members in this ward for over four years.

    The immediate reason for adopting this uniform dress was to do away with the motley array of vividly colored sweaters, seldom pressed coats, and shirt sleeves of varying degrees of color and cleanliness.

    No opposition was found in introducing the plan.
    The boys were consulted one Sunday. A week later eighteen of their number turned out properly attired. The ward members at once expressed their approval. Parents of sons who were not properly equipped, provided white shirts and black ties immediately.

    Younger boys in the ward wait anxiously for their twelfth birthdays so they can take part in the passing of the sacrament. Many of them appear in their shirts and ties long before they are eligible for ordination. In some cases, when a boy is financially unable to get the required clothing, the ward Relief Society has cooperated.

    The system of passing the sacrament in Highland Park Ward, has a number of additional features. The 18 or 20 deacons who pass are arranged according to their height around the sacrament table. Each deacon is assigned a definite section. This is done in such a way that they all finish their sections at the same time. Arriving at their positions, the deacons stand at attention until the signal is given by the supervisor. When all are through the signal is again given and the deacons return to the Sacrament table.

    An important result of the white shirt-black tie system has been a noticeable increase of boys in attendance at Sunday School, and Sacrament meeting and in the number participating in the passing of the sacrament. The members of the ward have expressed themselves as being greatly impressed with the sacredness of the ordinance by the solemnity of administration.

    The deacons have been encouraged by many prominent church leaders who have visited the Ward and expressed their approval of their method of conducting the sacrament service.

  27. Steve Evans says:

    Vividly colored sweaters! If all wards had been like unto Highland Park, perhaps we could have avoided some of those horrors seen on the Cosby Show.

  28. Arranged by height . . . stand at attention . . . signal from the supervisor.

    I feel something militaristic coming on.

    I don’t know, but I heard tell,
    Highland Park can go to hell.

    Sound off, etc.

  29. For deacon’s quorum advisor, they probably had somebody like gunnery sergeant Hartmann from Full Metal Jacket.

  30. Yikes. Leave it to Justin to find this.

  31. I should add that Glade served as the ward’s Supervisor of Deacons.

  32. Aaron Brown says:

    No conversation of Satan and Mormonism is complete without reference to Pink Floyd and Judy Garland:


    Aaron B

  33. BTW, the couple who organized the dress shirt drive for the benefit of some African members were from North Carolina.

  34. Days later…Windows Media Player can indeed handle it. A fine zeitcast, a bit long and a bit masculine, but very amusing. (Though I must admit that my kids’ running commentary was my favorite part.)

    Found myself wondering what the environmental impact of a cat-burning is. Now that’s thought provoking.

%d bloggers like this: