I am skeptical of the traditional paranormal interpretations, but I do think there is something profoundly real in this phenomena, but it is that which we cannot ever openly demonstrate.
There is no genuine contemplative practice in Mormonism, an inner meditative gaze deep in consciousness. I offer a possible format for a uniquely Mormon practice.
The "Urim & Thummim" were perhaps Joseph's own eyes, which in a mystical state of consciousness could "see" the visionary "plates." He lost these "gifts" for a time.
Yes, actually, I think there is a Way. But it's perhaps not the Way that most people think, desire, or hope, but I suggest it is Divine.
It seems that many people may give up on meditation or other contemplative practices because they do not provide quick results, particularly in our instant gratification culture today. It can take significant dedication and discipline in practice before we see any fruits. But there are other possibilities on the horizon that may help us along [...]
Fr. Laurence Freeman, OSB Last night I had the wonderful opportunity to attend a lecture with Fr. Laurence Freeman, OSB, at the Carmelite Monastery of Baltimore in Towson, Maryland. It was sponsored by the Carmelite Sisters of Baltimore, and the Benedictine Sisters of Emmanuel Monastery, as well as The World Community for Christian Meditation, of [...]
Who was Joseph Smith Jr. (1805-1844)? He's been quite an enigma both within and outside of Mormonism since his death. Many Mormons see him as a deeply gifted prophet of God, in the tradition of the Old Testament prophets like Isaiah, Ezekiel, and even Moses. He recorded and published new scripture, the Book of Mormon, just like ancient prophets. Many Mormons revere him as someone who restored Christianity in its purity, even the original Christian church and true gospel of Jesus. They believe he received true priesthood authority from God to perform real saving rituals, ordinances, and act as a "high priest" to bring others into the presence of God.
Annie Dillard (b. 1945) is an American author of fiction and non-fiction. She won the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-fiction in 1975 for her work Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. This nonfiction book was written in the first-person detailing Dillard's exploration around her home in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains and her close observation of nature and life.
Whenever someone has been graced to perceive the Ultimate, the Highest, the One, it is because their consciousness has been transfigured into that of God's consciousness, such that they look out through God's eyes onto God.
Deep within me a thousand sweet breaths of Silence
cover my lips and say—