In this episode we interview Brian Dalton, a former member of the LDS church, and founder of the Mr. Deity Internet TV series — which explores religious belief from a skeptical point of view, using satire. Mr. Deity focuses on the every-day life God, and everything He must endure as He attempts to manage His creation.

  • In part 1, we discuss Brian’s early years, his experience with the LDS church, his disaffection from the church, his views on religion, and the making of Mr. Deity. Towards the end, we are very blessed to spend a few minutes with Mr. Deity Himself.
  • In part 2, we captured Brian’s plenary address from the 2010 Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium, where Brian tells more of his story, and also acts out a few Mr. Deity scenes with his wife, Amy (Lucy/Lucifer).

Warning: Both the Mr. Deity show and this interview approach religion from a satirical perspective. Those who are sensitive to religious satire will likely be offended.

Part 1:

Part 2:

 

 

15 Comments

  1. Joseph October 20, 2010 at 3:55 pm - Reply

    If I understand him correctly, I really like Brian’s definition of morality as “what we do” (the moral choices we make as individuals acting in real time) not “what we say we do” (the stories we tell to reinforce and/or illustrate our moral decisions).

    I also really like his emphasis on taking personal responsibility for one’s moral decisions. And I cannot resist a thumbs up for the mention of Jared Diamond’s natural experiments. Kudos for another great podcast.

  2. Aaron October 20, 2010 at 5:27 pm - Reply

    Very interesting having an atheist on your podcast talk about atheism. I think he was a good choice because he is not a militant atheist, but he also was on top of John’s questions (meaning, that Brain takes his atheistic views seriously). Brain’s shows do seem light-hearted and thought provoking. While I know of many who take offense to any type of parody of religious beliefs, I feel the MR. DEITY show (as Brain stated) does not come off of as a show where a guy has an ax to grind. I also agree with what he said about Richard Dawkins; while Dawkins seems very critical of religion, he isn’t as mean spirited as people make him out to be. Rather, he is frustrated that as a scientist, his field is the most attacked by religious people who haven’t developed a strong platform for rational thinking. I personally believe we all have rational minds that can develop the most irrational ideas imaginable. Now, while I will be the first to admit that I do believe there is a God, I am also the first to admit that my beliefs are built on a wager. Are all my beliefs correct? No. However, I like the big questions and like doubt. I think that is something I see in many atheists that I consider an admirable trait.

    • nancy rhodes May 5, 2011 at 5:51 pm - Reply

      Fantastic post. I wish I knew you personally and I would like to know people who think like you do. It is refreshing.
      As an atheist, I enjoy all people’s points of view. I just bristle when they become hostile that I don’t agree with them or
      if they suggest that I couldn’t possibly be a good person b/c I am not a believer.

  3. George Windes October 20, 2010 at 5:35 pm - Reply

    I stand all amazed. I’m three score and ten and am now making mental resolutions that I need to live till a hundred, that there may be other Mr. Deity podcasts I need to hear. Extra kuddos for being from Long Beach, as a survivor of the old LB Virginia City Ward, I stand proud!

  4. Glen October 20, 2010 at 5:55 pm - Reply

    Part 1 was great! Enjoyed it. Hope part 2 is as good, watching it now. Thanks again John.

  5. April October 22, 2010 at 5:15 pm - Reply

    Awesome! Just subscribed… totally laughing my butt off :) Good podcast John and excellent guest!

  6. Bengt washburn October 23, 2010 at 2:36 am - Reply

    I was introduced to Mr.Diety by my old art professor about three years ago. Been a fan ever since. I was exctied to see you have him as an upcoming guest and surprised to learn he was a Mormon pop star in his former life. Great interview John.

  7. Eric Comstock October 25, 2010 at 2:37 pm - Reply

    Loved this interview. Brian Dalton was hilarious and raised some thought provoking ideas.

  8. Smith November 5, 2010 at 5:12 pm - Reply

    Excellent, excellent podcast/interview. As far as I can tell, this is the first podcast about atheism from someone who is an open atheist, right? I like Dalton’s approach in saying that the only way we can have real discussions is by approaching both sides of issues with reason. I also like how he says the issues need to be attacked from all different angles. Comedy has an effective way of pointing out absurdities that somehow get lost in debates and written word. Again, great guest, great interview, more like this would be perfect! Keep it up!

  9. ครีมหมอจุฬา November 22, 2010 at 2:20 am - Reply

    Part 1 was great! Enjoyed it. Hope part 2 is as good, watching it now. Thanks again John.

  10. Roo Bookaroo February 16, 2011 at 4:36 pm - Reply

    Excellent.
    I only wish Brian Dalton articulated a little better. That is, moved his lips and jaws a little more, instead of being happy mumbling away in his beard, barely using his mouth, barely opening it.
    Am I the only one to be sensitive to a need for a clearer, more wilful projection of his voice?

  11. JeremiahA December 21, 2011 at 9:45 am - Reply

    Both podcasts were equally enjoyable and I plan to look further into Mr. Deity. Brian Dalton poses thought-provoking concepts and challenges, but I would disagree with his description of “Mr. Deity” not being “theistic promoting.” The concepts presented address a caricature of Christianity, which is why they are humorous, and when one reflects and studies the challenges, the fact that they have already been addressed and/or refuted actually promotes theism.

  12. Zara June 5, 2012 at 1:26 am - Reply

    So glad I know about Mr. Deity now!

  13. […] revealing version of Dalton’s exit story has been made available in an interview by John Dehlin.22 It turns out that Dalton grew up with a guitar and not faith. Then there was a brief moment when he […]

  14. […] John Dehlin, “205–206: Mr. Deity’s Brian Dalton,” Mormon Stories Podcast, 20 October 2010, https://mormonstories.org/?p=1286. Much of what follows concerning “Mr. Deity” will be drawn from this interview, though without […]

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