Tuesday, October 10, 2006

On EllenWhite.org

Recently a friend mentioned that they don't like the site EllenWhite.org. I chuckled as they referred to the site as an accumulation of trivial objections to insignificant Adventist ridiculousness - well, my words not theirs. But it is true: some of the items appear to be insignificant.

While I do have a variety of opinions of some of the content a couple of points need to be made. First, the site has a wide variety of content. Some of it is rather trivial and I found myself in a state of perpetual yawn while reading some of it. Other of the content is rather bombastic and not at all scholarly. But there are points made on the site that need to be heard. One such article entitled "The Arrest and Trial of Israel Dammon". This was very striking to me especially since I'd heard the traditional Adventist accounting of this miraculous episode from childhood and here was an alternative accounting that did not match Ellen White's own. I've written my observations here. To me this involved the credibility of Adventists and of Ellen White.

The other observation about the content on the site is that it gives another voice about many subjects that Adventists have heard but one side of -- the official polemic Adventist side. Rather you believe that Ellen White was a plagiarist or not, honest scholarship requires that other voices be heard rather than the traditional defenses. In fact, as a student I was only presented with a watered-down version of the accusation and a standard paper-doll version of the rebuttal. It was only many years after that I fully understood the nature of the accusations and what has been discovered on the subject both by Adventists themselves and other researchers. So, the site, while at times dipping into the sensational, at least gives content and a voice that needs to be heard.

Oh, and the official site is here. Caution: you're entering in to a spin zone...

2 comments:

olga said...
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olga said...

I agree some of the stuff on their website tends to be sensational--some stuff reads like the tabloids--however, I was glad for this and other websites as they were helpful in the process of my leaving the church; while I found some stuff hard to believe I figured the SDA doctrines and beliefs are confusing enough, who knows? maybe some of these things are indeed true...only God knows! If anything, some of the crazy stuff I've read made me laugh really hard and that's not so bad after having been raised in a religion where jokes and laughter were supposedly sins (I think EGW said something to this effect).

Olga