Assignment 5

Read Rudolf Otto's The Idea of the Holy (E-Res), and The Death of Joseph Smith (E-Res).

1. According to Otto, what are the characteristics of the holy or sacred? Summarize his major points. Otto claims that the sacred cannot be comprehended by those who have had no experience of it. Do you agree or disagree? Why or why not?

3. According to the author of "The death of Joseph Smith", followers believed him to be a prophet sent by God, while detractors saw him as an arrogant impostor. What accounts for such divergent views? How and why did Smith's followers believe the sacred was manifest through him? Do the explanations of the sacred offered by Otto help in understanding Smith's appeal?

Write up the results of your analysis in a 1-2 page typed paper.