Seeking Wholesome Recreation

 

 

 

Seeking Wholesome Recreation

 

 

 

Dance

Fantasy

Fiction

Fine Art

Movies

Music

Video Games

Violence

 

 

 

 

By Nate Richardson

A Member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Available free at RichardsonStudies.com

Contact editor@richardsonstudies.com

 

Table of Contents

 

Introduction To Wholesome Recreation. 4

PART 1: JOY IN ZION.. 8

Chapter: Joseph Smith’s Examples & Teachings of Recreation. 9

Other Prophets on Recreation. 11

Chapter: Joy Analysis by Hugh Nibley from Book of Mormon & Pearl of Great Price Lectures. 14

Chapter: Approaching Zion: To Our Glory or To Our Condemnation by Hugh Nibley – Lecture Highlights. 15

Entertained Goons in Babylon: The Gospel of Consumerism & Its Absurd Advertising. 18

Chapter: What we Won’t Give up, Keeping us from Zion. 23

Chapter: Recreating the Holidays: Culture Shift: HOLINESS TO THE LORD: Why Christ & Santa aren’t Compatible – And an Analogy of the Plan of Salvation as told by Holidays. 24

Self-Mastery by Elder Russel M Nelson – Lecture Highlights shorten. 28

Chapter: Core Priorities & Views for The Daily Religious Life. 31

Chapter: What do we see when people get away from Gospel Centered Lives?. 33

Sort these comments on movies. 36

Zion is Joyous: Good Times After Leaving Babylon. 37

Add this in somewhere on music philosophy. 42

We are Living in The Great and Spacious Building, A Post-Christian World – Quotes. 43

Apostolic Warning Against Cyberspace. 45

The Case Against Video Games: Bazar Brainlessness & Wasted Time (combo these into 1 doc with subheaders, and therein give the VG and Against VG side) 46

The Case for Video Games: Explorative Puzzles. 49

Competition & Violence Guidelines. 56

Pre-Mature Content Exposure Harms Children. 60

Movie Philosophy. 61

Dance Standards. 62

PART: MAGIC & FANTASY. 65

Magic build in !!!!!!!!!! 66

Meaning of the Word “Magic” (add to which witch is which doc) 69

The Case for Fantasy: A Creative Teaching Tool 71

Sort fantasy debate, Joe comms, etc: 74

The Case Against Fantasy: Desensitizing & Unproductive (make sections) 82

In Favor of Reading Fiction if it is Realistic. 93

PART: UNSORTED SPORT DANCE HEALTH.. 98

Dance Forms. 99

Musical Instruments: A Fun (Working) Approach. 99

Don’t make entertainment your top priority. 100

Sport Philosophy. 102

Activities for Child Play. 105

Minimal Equipment Sports. 106

Women Should Not Be Warrior Killer Heroes. 108

Recreation & Dimensions of Good. 110

Which Witch is Which? Biblical Tolerance for Magic in Fantasy Novels red text insert pending edit put this in the pro fantasy essay as a section. 113

Biblical Verses Against Witches, Soothsayers, Magic, Divination, etc. pending. 118

Appendix 1: Entertainment Resources. 120

Appendix 2: Music resources. 121

Appendix: Studio C Comedy Suggested Clips likely trash. 122

Appendix: Dance Resources. 132

Instrument Resources. 137

On Some Favorite Sports. 142

Raising Concerns about Yoga. 144

 

 

Introduction To Wholesome Recreation

 

 

 

Prophets have assured us that recreation, “unstringing the bow” as Joseph Smith said, is necessary. As we approach this exciting commandment, let’s make sure we understand the doctrines surrounding the subject so that we do not exceed the bounds the Lord has set. There is so much that is good & beautiful, that we don’t need to bother with lesser things. We can become confident that our choices and standards are creating a strong family environment & culture of faith that will span generations. We all need to take care of ourselves if we are to be able to care for others. Without overstepping these bounds into ‘toxic self-care-ism’, we can find ways to maintain ourselves which please God in that they lead to our eternal happiness in his kingdoms of glory.

God expects us to enjoy life. We preach, we work hard, but we also play hard. Of course God’s work is often fun and any work we do building His kingdom is but a small token of gratitude, but we are also afforded the opportunity to seek wholesome recreation. In fact, due to its power to keep us and our relationships running smoothly, we could even consider recreation a commandment.

Christ was a man of sorrows acquainted with grief, and we should always maintain a sober view toward life & our need to serve the needy. We avoid loud laughter and trivial forms of recreation. Many claim the couch lounging hours are their needed recreation, but we will look at higher and holier ways to fulfill this need.

In this book we will take a bold look questioning some popular forms of entertainment. In an attempt to be non-dogmatic, I present both sides of several controversial subjects such as movie guidelines, music guidelines, the use of fictional and fantasy novels, video games, and other controversial topics, letting you chose for yourself with significant evidences at your view. We will look extensively at why to question pop rock and rap music. We will look into not only harmful messages, but harmful rhythms and beats.

There is a way of manhood, of the true man, even God our father, and we becoming like him, shed various things which are not compliant with the standard of his character (and there is a female counterpart hidden presently from view for sacred protection which pertains to our trial; we know she exists but do not as yet see her nor know her name). This letting go will include sloppy whiney unnaturally sounding music. it will include being unclean and disorderly in dress and maintenance of possessions. It will include the dedication of one’s time to building the kingdom of God and learning useful things and becoming skilled persons, with knowledge of truth, and love of beauty and excellence. Lesser things will be let go, and higher things adopted, until the highest is obtained. Many argue in favor of sloppiness, vanity, and claim that those who finer things are simply bias, and that various scenarios of varying valor coexist in the kingdom of God. But these opinions are merely reflections of weak character which will be purified. The person atop the mount must not be persuaded to come down but wait patiently for others to likewise rise. The kingdom of God is like unto various cities, some greater and some lesser, but those of the lesser will always be constrained to honesty confess that the higher are indeed higher! The man whose moral convictions are atop the mountain is Jesus Christ, and he will not come down.

 

 

 

A few key quotes on recreation:

 

“Just as honest toil gives rest its sweetness, wholesome recreation is the friend and steadying companion of work… Music, literature, art, dance, drama, athletics—all can provide entertainment to enrich one’s life and further consecrate it…” ” (Elder Christofferson in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

Make your entertainment high quality culture: “Too often we use many hours for fun and pleasure, clothed in the euphemism ‘I’m recharging my batteries.’ Those hours could be spent reading and studying to gain knowledge, skills, and culture.” (President Henry B Eyring in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

“And again I would exhort you that ye would come unto Christ, and lay hold upon every good gift, and touch not the evil gift, nor the unclean thing” (Moroni 10:30)

“You must excuse me, but when I’m with the boys I make all the fun I can.” -Joseph Smith (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

Brigham Young says theatre can aid the pulpit: “Upon the stage of a theater can be represented in character, evil and its consequences, good and its happy results and rewards; the weakness and the follies of man, the magnanimity of virtue and the greatness of truth. The stage can be made to aid the pulpit in impressing upon the minds of a community an enlightened sense of a virtuous life, also a proper horror of the enormity of sin and a just dread of its consequences. The path of sin with its thorns and pitfalls, its gins and snares can be revealed, and how to shun it.” (Brigham Young, JD 9:242; Remarks by President Brigham Young, made at the Dedication of the New Theater in Great Salt Lake City, March 6, 1862. Reported By: G. D. Watt.)

Brigham Young says we need the arts to be healthy: “There are many of our aged brethren and sisters, who, through the traditions of their fathers and the requirements of a false religion, were never inside a ballroom or a theater until they became Latter-day Saints, and now they seem more anxious for this kind of amusement than are our children. This arises from the fact they have been starved for many years for that amusement which is designed to buoy up their spirits and make their bodies vigorous and strong, and tens of thousands have sunk into untimely graves for want of such exercises to the body and the mind. They require mutual nourishment to make them sound and healthy. Every faculty and power of both body and mind is a gift from God. Never say that means used to create and continue healthy action of body and mind are from hell. Such means never originated there.” (Brigham Young, JD 9:242; Remarks by President Brigham Young, made at the Dedication of the New Theater in Great Salt Lake City, March 6, 1862. Reported By: G. D. Watt.)

 

 

“A man may be judged by his standard of entertainment as easily as by the standard of his work.” (Ben Shapiro)

 

“Largely because of television, instead of looking over into that spacious building, we are, in effect, living inside of it. That is your fate in this generation. You are living in that great and spacious building.” (President Boyd K. Packer, Lehi’s Dream and You, BYU Speech, 2007)

 

“Why do people feel guilty about TV? What is wrong with it? Just this: it shuts out all the wonderful things of which the mind is capable, leaving it drugged in a state of thoughtless stupor.” (Hugh Nibley)

 

“All movies are made for a religion. Many G rated movies are made for Satan.” -James Stoddard of The Joseph Smith Foundation

“When a community or nation grows careless in its Sabbath activities, its religious life decays and all aspects of life are negatively affected. The blessings associated with keeping the Sabbath day holy are lost. We should refrain from shopping on the Sabbath and participating in other commercial and sporting activities that now commonly desecrate the Sabbath. Latter-day Saints should set this holy day apart from activities of the world by entering into a spirit of worship, thanksgiving, service, and family-centered activities appropriate to the Sabbath. As Church members endeavor to make their Sabbath activities compatible with the intent and Spirit of the Lord, their lives will be filled with joy and peace.” (Preach My Gospel: What Should I Study And Teach: The Commandments: Keep the Sabbath Day Holy; https://www.lds.org/manual/preach-my-gospel-a-guide-to-missionary-service/lesson-4-the-commandments?lang=eng)

“When some music has passed the tests of time and been cherished by the noble and refined, our failure to appreciate it is not an indictment of grand music. The omission is within. If a young person grows up on a steady diet of hamburgers and french fries, he is not likely to become a gourmet. But the fault is not with fine food. He just grew up on something less. Some have grown up on a steady diet of musical french fries.” (Your Refined Heavenly Home by Douglas L. Callister, A BYU speech given September 19, 2006, https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/douglas-l-callister/refined-heavenly-home/ )

“We . . . live in a world that is too prone to the tasteless, and we need to provide an opportunity to cultivate a taste for the finest music. And, likewise, we’re in a world that’s so attuned to the now that we need to permit people to be more attuned to the best music of all the ages.” (Neal A. Maxwell, remarks at the inauguration of KRIC-FM, Ricks College, May 1984.)

“My lord, I should be sorry if I only entertained them; I wish to make them better.” (said by Handel after writing Messiah, In George Hogarth, Musical History, Biography, and Criticism (New York: J. S. Redfield, 1848), 67; see “A Tribute to Handel,” Improvement Era, May 1929, 574)

`“There is no music in hell, for all good music belongs to heaven.” (Brigham Young, JD 9:244.)

“To be vulgar is to do that which is not the best of its kind. It is to do poor things in poor ways, and to be satisfied with that. . . . It is vulgar to wear dirty linen when one is not engaged in dirty work. It is vulgar to like poor music, to read weak books, to feed on sensational newspapers, . . . to find amusement in trashy novels, to enjoy vulgar theatres, to find pleasure in cheap jokes.” (David Starr Jordan (Former President of Stanford University), The Strength of Being Clean: A Study of the Quest for Unearned Happiness (New York: H. M. Caldwell Co., 1900), 25.)

“Let us . . . show to the world that we have talent and taste, and prove to the heavens that our minds are set on beauty and true excellence, so that we can become worthy to enjoy the society of angels.” (Brigham Young, JD 11:305.)

“Run and not be weary, walk and not faint.” -D&C 89

PART 1: JOY IN ZION

Chapter: Joseph Smith’s Examples & Teachings of Recreation

“You must excuse me, but when I’m with the boys I make all the fun I can.” -Joseph Smith (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph Smith was quite fond of wrestling. Joseph had a clerk to whom he said ‘you know if you were bigger I could have some fun with you’ he responded ‘well don’t let that stop you Joseph’ then Joseph wrestled him and broke his leg. Joseph carried him home and the clerk said ‘when Jacob wrestled an angel he got a blessing. I want a blessing.’ Joseph gave him a blessing, and he was miraculously healed. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph Smith told one man who had done much work for the building up of God’s kingdom, that this brother needed to rest a while, to enjoy himself. The man responded, “I cannot”. Joseph said, “then you will die.” The man indeed later died a premature death, and Joseph spoke at his funeral. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-When others chastised Joseph for playing sports, thinking that a prophet shouldn’t do such things, Joseph taught them that if you don’t unstring the bow from time to time, it loses its spring. This meant that to be effective he had to relax sometimes.

-Joseph Smith was known to be easily drawn to laughter, and frequently played with children and his brethren, playing sports and joking with them. He said we shouldn’t be too involved in the fantastic, but that a good sense of humor is of God. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Many saw Hyrum Smith as more prophet-like than Joseph, as Hyrum was less jovial and playful, but we know that these traits of Joseph helped him cope with his many trials, and uplift his fellows. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph was hired as a farm hand not only because he was a hard worker, but because he could get the others to work too. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph had a clerk to whom he said ‘you know if you were bigger I could have some fun with you’ he responded ‘well don’t let that stop you Joseph’ then Joseph wrestled him and broke his leg. Joseph carried him home and the clerk said ‘when Jacob wrestled an angel he got a blessing. I want a blessing.’ Joseph gave him a blessing, and he was miraculously healed. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph had a few ministers come over to his home who challenged him in the scriptures. Joseph was able to answer all their questions, and pose questions to them which they could not answer. They decided to leave, and as they did, Joseph went ahead of them, drew a line in the sand, and ‘jumped at the mark’, meaning measured how far he jumped. Joseph said, ‘there you see I bested you in the scriptures, let’s see if you can beat me in this!’ The men left very disappointed. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph was known for excelling at the stick pull, where 2 men pulled no a stick, and the one to pull the other off the ground won. Another version of this was both pulling on a stick, and whose ever hands slipped was the weaker man. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph was being pestered by a man volleying threats; Joseph told the man he was with, I think it was Sydney Rigdon to ‘throw that man’, which his companion did, and the men thenceforth left him alone.  (from lectures on the prophets by Truman G Madsen)

-Joseph was about 6’2” and over 200 pounds. He was very strong from all his farm work.

-once all they had was some Johnny cake (corn bread), Joseph prayed ‘dear God we thank thee for this Johnny cake, and please send us something better.’ Just before their meal was ended, someone knocked on the door and presented him a turkey and a ham. Joseph jumped for joy and said, ‘you see Emma, my prayer was answered!’ (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

Once Joseph Smith was fund raising to get Porter Rockwell out of jail. He went to the temple building site, told them of the plight of Porter, and asked them to put money in a hat for Porter. Many did so. Joseph saw some people jostling, and decided to wager that he would win in a wrestling match against the strongest many present. The strongest stepped forward, and Joseph won, which helped raise much funds for Porter. After winning the match, Joseph picked up the man by his collar and trousers, and tossed him into a river. After this he hugged the man and spoke of how it was good fun.

One man from another church came to see Joseph, asking if he was the prophet. Joseph said, “I am, do you want to wrestle?”

-on one occasion Joseph dressed in as ragged of clothes as he could and rode out to the ship of the most recent arrivals. He asked the first man he saw ‘why are you here?’ the man said ‘I have joined the Mormon church’. Joseph said ‘what do you know about Joseph Smith?’ the man said ‘I know that he is a prophet of God’. Joseph said ‘what if I told you I was Joseph Smith?’ the man said ‘then I would know that you are a prophet of God’. Joseph then got off his horse and shook the man’s hand and said ‘I am Joseph Smith, and I have dressed like this to show you that if you’ve come to expect anything more than a man, you may as well get right back on that boat’. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

 

 

 

Other Prophets on Recreation

-Brigham Young: reportedly the night bugle sounded and they were about to end a dance, but Brigham said something to the effect of ‘forget the bugle, I want to dance!’ and proceeded to dance till around 3am (see Truman G Madsen’s lectures on the prophets)

-Brigham said “now we are to rest here” while on the trial. Then he said, “now we dance”. Porter Rockwell said “first he tells us we can rest, now he tells us we must dance!” (see Madsen presidents of the church book)

-the prophetic ‘Family Proclamation to the World’ (1995) teaches that wholesome recreation is one of the key elements to successful family life.

-Elder Neal A Maxwell played tennis even into his late years.

-President Thomas S. Monson taught old folks in rest homes about how a football game works, so they can understand what is going on the television and enjoy it. He speaks about current ball games. He says fishing is good and spiritual. He says having animals and going to fairs is joyful. He says road shows and dance festivals are uplifting. He knows about what is going on in the local barber shop. Henry the 8th was his favorite Shakespeare play. Among his favorite theatrical works is the Phantom of the Opera. He enjoyed raising pigeons. (see book To The Rescue by Heidi Swinton)

-President Russel M Nelson skied even into his 90’s.

-President Monson was a regular swimmer.

-“Just as honest toil gives rest its sweetness, wholesome recreation is the friend and steadying companion of work… Music, literature, art, dance, drama, athletics—all can provide entertainment to enrich one’s life and further consecrate it…” ” (Elder Christofferson in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

-Make your entertainment high quality culture: “Too often we use many hours for fun and pleasure, clothed in the euphemism ‘I’m recharging my batteries.’ Those hours could be spent reading and studying to gain knowledge, skills, and culture.” (President Henry B Eyring in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

 

-Don’t make entertainment your top priority: “In a materialistic age, when recreation and convenience are the suggested priorities of our society, we might all well ask ourselves, ‘How well are we providing for the spiritual well-being and strengthening of our families? …Are we clothing family members with ‘garments of salvation’ as anxiously as we provide clothing for their wardrobe? Is our diet of entertainment and recreation balanced with the food offered by Him who said, ‘Come unto me and ye shall partake of the fruit of the tree of life; yea, ye shall eat and drink of the bread and the waters of life freely’ (Alma 5:34).” (Elder Ballard in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

 

-“Parents should act to preserve time for family prayer, family scripture study, family home evening, and the other precious togetherness and individual one-on-one time that binds a family together and fixes children’s values on things of eternal worth…Parents should teach gospel priorities through what they do with their children.” (Elder Oaks in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

 

-One of the reasons the Church is commanded to obey a strict health law “The Word of Wisdom” is to enable their spirits to be at peak of intellect, so they can discern better between good and evil, fill the measure of their creation, have joy, and invite others to enjoy the beauty of Zion.

-You can set a good example by not saying of the words that are not polite in the books you must read. Thomas S. Monson encourages the Saints to please not swear (Gen. Conf.).

-We have to be aware of things, reading even Osama Bin Ladin and Scarlet Letter and other things that are very controversial.

-Stay away from “anti-Mormon” books, rather learn what LDS believe by asking LDS.

-Some men are called to review anti-Mormon books, but they are set apart for that, and given a special blessing to be able to discern between truth and error as they do that mission for the church, seeing as it’s easy to get deceived in cunning and crafty words, and even blatant lies.

-One example is the Apocrypha, the LDS Bible Dictionary speaks how these documents are not entirely true, but if the reader reads them with the Holy Ghost, he can find much to benefit from them.

-Things like Les Mesrables teach how little people had morals and how conditions were, and that there are take aways from such, for the message is that such is bad;

-When we read something the Holy Ghost can teach us of weather it’s something we need to put down.

-The Apostles of The Church are not ignorant of what happens in the world but are very aware. They travel all over the world, and are very involved, not out of date (Elder Ballard Gen. Conf. Oct. 2014).

-To a certain degree, what we entertain is up to the interpretation and judgment of the individual.

-We can look for the best versions of things, learn from the best books.

-Greeks in plays did the graphic parts off stage, that respect is gone now.

-Prophet of the LDS Church President Hinckley said no “R” rated movies a long time ago. Since then, now what then would have been x rated is R, and much of what was R then is PG-13 now. There is a lot of politics in film ratings, and there is a lot of compromise and finding ways for something to barely make the cut off for a certain rating.

-The Phantom of the Opera is one of Thomas S Monson’s favorite plays (see “To The Rescue”).

-Victor Hugo’s Les Mesrables is often quoted in General Conference.

– “Whatever you read, listen to, or look at has an effect on you. Therefore, choose only entertainment and media that uplift you. Good entertainment will help you to have good thoughts and make righteous choices. It will allow you to enjoy yourself without losing the Spirit of the Lord. While much entertainment is good, some of it can lead you away from righteous living. Offensive material is often found in web sites, concerts, movies, music, videocassettes, DVDs, books, magazines, pictures, and other media. Satan uses such entertainment to deceive you by making what is wrong and evil look normal and exciting. It can mislead you into thinking that everyone is doing things that are wrong. Do not attend, view, or participate in entertainment that is vulgar, immoral, violent, or pornographic in any way. Do not participate in entertainment that in any way presents immorality or violent behavior as acceptable.” (from “For the Strength of Youth” at https://www.lds.org/manual/for-the-strength-of-youth-fulfilling-our-duty-to-god/entertainment-and-the-media?lang=eng&query=clean+entertainment) note: many of the adult leaders of the Church carry this manual with them as these standards apply to all ages.

– Excerpt from latter-day saint guide to the scriptures on cleanliness:

-He that hath clean hands and a pure heart shall ascend unto the hill of the Lord: Ps. 24:3–5;
-Do not call any man common or unclean: Acts 10:11–28;
-Can ye look up to God at that day with a pure heart and clean hands?: Alma 5:19;
-The Lord will chasten Zion until she is clean: D&C 90:36;
-Be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord: D&C 133:4–5, 14; ( Isa. 52:11; )

For an excellent lecture on the personality and character of Joseph Smith by Truman G. Madsen, including his inclination to play sports and laugh with others: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVXkBX0JNjI

Chapter: Joy Analysis by Hugh Nibley from Book of Mormon & Pearl of Great Price Lectures

 

 

-Mosiah 4:11-12 is the key, always remember your own nothingness and the goodness, of God, and you’ll always rejoice!
(Me Nothing + Good God = Rejoice!)

-Nephi said he lived after the manner of happiness, which means they were happy all the time and so should we be.

-There is no end to what we can and will receive so long as we don’t reject it.

-Shakespeare was right about this world being a dross and sleep, but when the gospel in fullness you find, all else is cast aside, it’s not just fine arts where you look at the menu, it’s the feast.

-5 times Brigham Young was driven out entirely. He said let ’em burn the temple the earth is the Lords and the fullness thereof. Let go of all and go worship. Things will care to themselves. Nothing has worn to me a gloomy aspect since I got the gospel. Even facing mobs. All works toward the good of the Kingdom.

-Never you find a sad true Saint. Joy to each needed measure. Brigham Young saw the temple burning and said “Good. 3 cheers.” What the Lord lets go, we do too, with joy. All that matters is the work the Lord has for me to do today. This is what Brigham Young was known to say.

-Visions of minds being opened isn’t like a symphony, but much more.

-Who live as they should constantly see glimpses of eternity.

-Brigham Young said ‘The secret of mine is to never worry. I never do.’ Also, Joseph Smith came to Brigham Young oft and said don’t be in a hurry.

-Greek tragedies show what life is like without the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

Chapter: Approaching Zion: To Our Glory or To Our Condemnation by Hugh Nibley – Lecture Highlights

 

 

Here Hugh Nibley explains key differences between Zion and Babylon.

 

Topics: economics, environment, Satan, Babylon, Zion, paradise, academics, money, career, beauty, Eden, guide

-Jewish legend that Adam was only allowed to the parts of the earth that he worked in. That he tilled and cared for.

-There is a difference between working to make a living and taking from the earth. Many of us rob the earth of its beauty for thousands of years in order to live in wealth for a little season. It’s easy to do; all you do is sign a few papers.

-Zion is to be beautiful. It’s always said that Zion is beautiful, then joyful. They come in that order because the beauty is what makes Zion glad. This is not to be mistaken with Babylon, who is described as being beautiful in the scriptures.

-Children are reckless in part because their parents are. The parents go around wasting time but in different forms, like watching football games, watching R rated movies, driving cars, etc.

-Heaven is to be a paradise. So, make Zion that way. Brigham Young said we should plant shade trees and flowers and make rivers until this earth appears as the Garden of Eden. We preach the gospel by how beautiful our towns are. People see it and think, wow this is paradise!

-Brigham Young said that beauty is our surest safeguard. When we see beauty we feel joy. We can trust those feelings to guide us a right!

-Making earth as Eden is not a one-crop enterprise.

-Historically we read of Satan, Cain, Cesar, etc., getting dominion over things by force, and burning wildlife, and killing animals and humans.

-We read of great hunters like Nimrod Cain etc. that kill for sport. Brigham Young said this is sinful, and only to kill animals as we need to for survival.

-Just as sure that Zion will be established, Babylon will be destroyed. She won’t be converted. No, she won’t have that. Her destiny is to be destroyed.

-Babylon is the inverse image of Zion.

-Babylon is the center for commerce and business.

-The economy of Babylon is built on deception.

-Babylon lusts after human slaves.

-When Babylon falls the entire world will be involved. She thinks none see her, but that is not the case. (*She is to be exploited every whit).

-Rome itself was Babylon the great in every respect.

-The Roman Church called itself the church at Babylon.

-The plan Satan proposed to Adam that Adam rejected was to put everything on the earth up for sale, so that you could have anything in this world for money. But you had to have money!

-We are like children in our understanding for we think it’s silly to wander in gardens with seemingly nothing to do and would rather be in the marketplace.

-There is an unbridgeable gap between Babylon and Zion for they lead in two opposite ways.

-Many LDS people teach mixing Babylon with Zion but when that occurs Babylon is already won.

-Hebrew word for money is mammon, and pertains to money and people who deal with money. Thus the financing business is of the devil. Jesus taught we are to avoid such at all costs, and only befriend the mammon of unrighteousness to the needed degree to survive.

-Our society is not like the earth that God designed us to have. There have been times when people have lived without doctors, lawyers, beauticians, auto mechanics, dentists, generals, used car salesmen, garbage men, prostitutes, etc. Some of these can be an unpleasant necessity because of the society we have set up. These are unnecessary just as Kings and Dukes are not necessary in the United States. We are not living in the world the way God intended it to be and we need to get it that way. These things pertain to our glory or our condemnation.

-Nature admonishes that paradise is a reality. Modern revelation tells us that Zion is a reality, and paradise is the natural state of Zion

-We all have full time employment discovering the world

 

 

Entertained Goons in Babylon: The Gospel of Consumerism & Its Absurd Advertising

 

Violence is on the television screen at the public places and the people cheer; this is the sign that the hearts have waxed cold. They do this for entertainment – they don’t care about reality. They will not lift a finger to protect their nation nor the morals of their nation. They have no morals except what they need to get gain. And all hell fights against the church of the lamb of God and those whom seek for such. The science is biased in their favor and we are in Babylon the great, though it shall fall. Praise God! Hosanna, Lord save us!

-For more critical info about this, see the film “The True Cost: Who Pays the Price for Our Clothes?” about the sweat shops which suffer for us to have cheap nice clothes. And we just let it happen. We can boycott this by where we choose to spend our money! The film is on Netflix, and here is a link to my notes on it: https://richardsonstudies.wordpress.com/category/the-true-cost-who-pays-the-price-for-our-clothes/

-Also mind you, in 4th Nephi, it gives the first reason for the falling apart of Zion as the love of costly apparel.

-on 2018 the beer vending company Bud Light had advertised that their beverage was “for the many, not for the few”. Wow! Sounds like the broad road to hell which Jesus spoke of!

-on 11/9/15 I saw a clothing brand called “No Boundaries”. It is notorious for being extremely tight fitting! This is open rebellion and sexual debauchery!

-One store is called “Vanity”. “Ah, they have the best jeans!” some say. No! You don’t shop at a store named vanity people!

-One makeup brand is called “Lavillin”! It’s like the name “Cruella Deville”! Look at it: la means the, then is the word “villain”. Why people?!

-in May of 2016 in the New York Times I was flipping through and saw a picture of a woman with extremely expensive clothing, gaudy and pride full, she was the center of the universe, her own deity. The caption said, “Believe in The Magic of Giving”. It was to sell a 400$ coat from Calvin Clein. In the next page or so was a picture of a woman living in a small hut not even big enough for her to fully lay down in, with a tarp for a roof, and a couple of eating utensils stacked up around the door. The floor was dirt. She was in Myanmar. I wept at how backward and heartless our society is.

-A shopping mall in Utah county says, “The Center of it All!” What planet are we on?! We are in trouble folks! The center of it all used to be the temple! Truly, we have made this place our temple! We believe not in the Lord our God, but in the works of our own hands! Think no longer that we are superior to those who worshipped the work of their hands in days of old!

-One shirt I’ve seen often lately says “Ball is everything!”. Wow let’s not have diversity, nor healthy recreation, let’s have this consume every aspect of our lives and define us!

-A radio advertisement I heard said “When I wake in the morning I think of sports and media, this consumes my life, I want a career in this.”

-When you’re in a shopping mall (God help you to not be in there when it falls), you see “Victoria’s Secret” underwear products being advertised in much more than life size images right there in open sight. Is nothing sacred anymore? So much for the secret, Victoria. This is not normal folks.

-Do we question folks, that these things are an abomination and a sign of the times that we live in the last and most wicked time of this earth, and on the most wicked planet in the universe? This is the doctrine. This is part of the problem folks.

– “Darkness prevails at this time as it did at the time Jesus Christ was about to be crucified. The powers of darkness strove to obscure the glorious Son of righteousness, that began to dawn upon the world, and was soon to burst in great blessings upon the heads of the faithful” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 90‑91.)

 

 

-one surf store in Provo is called “Called to Surf”, a pun, obviously, on “Called to Serve” a mission. Surfing is fun and all, but I don’t like the sound of this. Further, it sort of sounds like becoming a serf / peasant. Hopefully no one opts for the call to surf instead of the call to serve!

-one Utah county billboard said, ‘diamonds were women’s best friend until they invented Botox’. This speaks volumes of vanity!

– “Find the Urge to Splurge” said a bill board pointing to the Utah Fashion-place Mall! I don’t think anyone has trouble finding that urge!
– “OBEY WORLD AGENDA”! said on cap I saw. What does that mean?!
-“the bravery of tinkling ornaments, and cauls, and round tires like the moon; The chains and the bracelets, and the mufflers; The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the ear-rings; The rings, and nose jewels; The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping-pins; The glasses, and the fine linen, and hoods, and the veils.” (Isaiah 3)
-“15 What mean ye that ye beat my people to pieces, and grind the faces of the poor? saith the Lord God of hosts.
16 ¶ Moreover the Lord saith, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing as they go, and making a tinkling with their feet:
17 Therefore the Lord will smite with a scab the crown of the head of the daughters of Zion, and the Lord will discover their secret parts.
18 In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their cauls, and their round tires like the moon,
19 The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers,
20 The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings,
21 The rings, and nose jewels,
22 The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins,
23 The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the veils.
24 And it shall come to pass, that instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle a rent; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of a stomacher a girding of sackcloth; and burning instead of beauty.
25 Thy men shall fall by the sword, and thy mighty in the war.
26 And her gates shall lament and mourn; and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground.” (Isaiah 3:15-26)

The following is a little satirical essay poking at the advertising theory using beauty products to replace the need of a Savior:
Springy-Clothing and Ultra-cleanse body redeeming product for sale! A satyrical mocking of fashion and their claims to attend to ALL your needs, and other filthy media and cultural practices:
(As you proceed indulging in public television and public schools, you’ll find the following messages in a blink!)

-Tired of waiting around for a Messiah to come and glorify your body in immortal splendor and beauty? Weather you feel like you don’t fall in with that group, or whether you of the 21st century just don’t have the time to wait around that long, or whether you just don’t believe God is powerful enough to give you mercy, you’re about to learn about a product that’s just right for you so you can stop worrying about all that!
-Have 10% of your income extra that you don’t know what to do with? Tired of giving it to some Church that just crimps your style? Put it to somewhere that will really count!
-Feel bad for the mistakes you’ve made in this life?
-Want to know the secrets to soap operas? SOAP! It’s all about washing your body to feel renewed and regenerated, even redeemed and free!
-It’s like those in days of old, the Romans were famous for washing their bodies sometimes more than 3 times a day to wash off their sins and mistakes! It’s all about refreshing, renewing, redeeming yourself!
-All that you need is money! It’s that simple!
-Tired of feeling weighed down by your mistakes and being rejected by your peers and loved ones?
-Try this new formula, the cleansing refreshing redeeming wash of ultra-cleanse!
-You’ll be born again as you wash your body! You’ll forget all your flaws and have no more regret or remorse! Oh what dazzling confidence you can have!
-with our products, no matter what moral choices you make, you can live happily ever after just like all the teen films and television shows we pay for to show off our products!
-Buy now and we’ll throw in free this ultra-hair-redeemer, so you can even avoid the plagues foretold by Isaiah the prophet that the wicked would at a soon coming day be bald and stinky!
-As a woman of the 21st century you have way too much to worry about to be concerned with moral character choices you make! Trust us ladies, there is only one way to bypass all of that, and it’s with our all new everlasting body and hair formula’s! You won’t be stinky, on the inside or the out, we guarantee it! Improving the out improves the in!
-no longer reserve sacred parts of your body, curves, lines, etc., for your husband or wife to see, but show everyone! Be free!
-Sacrifice all dignity and principals of modesty to have the competitive advantage in sports and other areas of social life!
-make it impossible for people to ignore you, you’re better than that! It’s like driving down the road with your stereo blasting!
-don’t waste your time trying to become a poet, author, scientist, builder, artist, philosopher, physician, historian, just get money and get it fast! Then you can use this product which brings you all!
-spending all your time hanging out with friends isn’t going to cut it these days, you need to do more to establish yourself socially and find success! You need accessories!
-And remember, the way to get wealth, as popular vote has shown, is to inherit it, or to win the lottery, or to sue someone! If you can’t do any of those, you can always just put us at the top of your budget and rely on government bailouts despite your rank poverty, because life is about priorities, and rights! Don’t let anyone fool you, or anything in the way of the lifestyle you deserve!
-be righteous and holy like the ever so coveted Egyptians and all their pomp! They really had it down!
-Being comely and clean in your apparel is simply not enough! You must make yourself gaudy to be truly attractive! You deserve more!
-find your true self!
-See our great new clothing product line, “OBEY WORLD AGENDA”! What does that mean? Don’t worry about it, they’re just cool clothes!
-So come “Find the Urge to Splurge” at the Utah Fashion-place Mall!
-someone has got to be responsible for you and your needs!
-as a 21st century new age American, it’s a whole new world with whole new rules! You qualify for and deserve to have your cake and eat it to. Your beauty and success are all up to you, and you deserve them just as much as anyone else! Buy your way into the elite social class because you can!
-find a new you!
-be the person you always dreamed you could become!
-success is now with in your reach with the new clothing and accessories of Ultra-Cleanse!
-men today demand 1st rate view into your unique personality talents and character by your wearing tight clothing like everyone else! Show who you really are inside! Nothing says more about your truly unique self and special personality than extra cleavage, extra short shorts, extra tight clothing all around, and sporting the name brands clothing that everyone else is wearing! You just can’t afford to go without!
-don’t worry about caring to the needs of the poor, someone else always takes care of them! You need to put yourself first or you’ll lose everything!
-And for you BYU students whom I’ve seen wearing the “Ball is Life” shirts, boy have you found the right place, we ENTIRLY agree with you! Sports make the world, your scholarships, and your opportunity to play and never have to work, go around! Let us celebrate sports all the more!
-Come here to find the latest innovations to help you survive in this hip-hop world, we have everything you need in the following departments: the bravery of tinkling ornaments, and cauls, and round tires like the moon;
The chains and the bracelets, and the mufflers;
The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the ear-rings;
The rings, and nose jewels;
The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping-pins;
The glasses, and the fine linen, and hoods, and the veils.

Chapter: What we Won’t Give up, Keeping us from Zion

 

Here are some pesky things that seem to get the best of us down, and block our path to Zion. May we at length (shorter than longer) learn to say ‘get thee behind me Satan’ when confronting these ills of our time.

Meat (in most cases this isn’t needed (see D&C 89), but no one seems to care about that anymore (except the 7th Day Adventists and a few others).)
Money (Who among us can say they truly dedicate all surplus to helping the poor?)
Time (Everyone has it, it reveals our priorities in unmistakable clarity before God.)
Clothing (ironic how we have too much of too little clothing; modesty is perhaps the key symbol of rebellion among the daughters of Zion (Isaiah has a few words on that subject).)
Music
Careerism
Retirement
Sabbath games (instead of worship and charitable service)
Authoritarian parenting (cold and strict) (as opposed to authoritative (warm and strict).)
Large empty homes (childlessness and unrestrained luxury)
Fast food (Defiling our bodies, thinking them to be worth no trouble to maintain.)
Big city life (As opposed to small community living where everyone has a name and a purpose.)
Social status / social circles (as opposed to freely associating with everyone, and parting our substance among them.)
Course entertainment (As opposed to using the vast resources of wholesome materials.)

Chapter: Recreating the Holidays: Culture Shift: HOLINESS TO THE LORD: Why Christ & Santa aren’t Compatible – And an Analogy of the Plan of Salvation as told by Holidays

 

 

Christmas is a holy week like Hanukkah. No man can serve 2 masters: help the children understand it is Christ, not Santa, that is to be thanked for their gifts.

 

“Jesus Christ is the source of every blessing we receive” said President Henry B. Eyring. Teach the children that gifts are from people who love them like parents, siblings, and neighbors. Teach them that the Holy Ghost, whom is the messenger of Jesus Christ, is who inspired them to be kind and give gifts.

 

President Nelson recently received the revelation for the church that using the title of Mormons was inappropriate and offensive to God, in that it sidetracks from the real name of the church, which is the church of Jesus Christ. Would it not stand to reason that we are doing something similar with Christmas when we make Santa the focal point of benevolence & accountability? Surely the time in which we celebrate the birth of the Savior of the World should be one where he is the central character. There was no room for his birth back then, and there is apparently still no room to this day.

 

When children are contemplating weather they are on the ‘naughty or nice list’, teach them that it is Christ, not Santa, who holds that list. Christ truly holds them accountable, and truly does watch their every move. It is interesting how the secular world uses Santa to hold children accountable. They recognize that the key factor in behavior is accountability. Conveniently, they have selected a man who has set no real expectations to be their standard of accountability.

 

While Santa isn’t the epitome of evil, he has, however well intending, gotten in the way of teaching children about Christ. If Santa gets in the way of Christ, we can say, like Christ said to well-intending Peter, ‘get thee behind me Satan, for thou savorest not the things of God.’ Santa is Satan when he undermines Christ. If ‘Santa’ does good to others, then he is of Christ, because whatsoever persuades men to do good is of Christ. But the second he becomes bigger than Christ, he needs to step down.

 

Easter, the true time of the birth of Christ, must also be used to teach symbols of new life in Christ.

 

Halloween can be a time of light rather than darkness, a time of abiding joy rather than fear and fleeting pleasures. Wear white all week long. Keep the lights on all week long. If you are celebrating the dead, celebrate them in beauty, looking forward to the resurrection of the dead. Looking forward to the realms of light in which we will meet them again.

 

New Year’s should be a time to contemplate the creation of the earth. In ancient times, the new year was always a time to reenact the creation of the earth through dramatic plays and ceremonies. Similarly, we can contemplate the beginning as a new era comes upon us. A time to start afresh doing things the way that God originally intended them to be.

 

At the end of the day, we may as well throw out the pagan holidays, and put in Judeo-Christian ones. Celebrate Passover and other biblical festivals. Ensure your celebrations are centered on the plan of salvation.

Plan of Salvation as told in the Holidays: An Analogy:

Note: this is just a fun study of comparing and contrasting holidays in the order they occur, and relating that to the plan of salvation in the order of eternal events, or the choosing of a higher or lower kingdom.

In reality, anytime people come together with friends and family is a great time. I love all holidays (but especially Christmas!)

 

 

The Creation Holiday: New Year’s Day

 

-we remember beginnings, especially the creation of earth & being raised as “young” spirits in pre-mortality

The Holiday of Promise: Easter

-we learn in premortality of Jesus Christ and Gods plan for us to have immortal bodies like himself

 

The Holiday of War: Memorial Day

 

-we fought in pre-mortality between Jehovah (Christ) and Lucifer

 

The Pre-Mortal Holiday: Independence Day

 

-becoming free, as in the election of Christ instead of Lucifer, and thus coming to earth to work out our salvation

The Mortal Holiday: Labor Day

-this life is the day for men to perform their labors, to prepare to meet God

 

 

***Now moving on to the 3 core holidays, typical of the 3 kingdoms of glory assigned after this life:

 

 

The Telestial Holiday, Halloween:

 

-FOOD: empty calories which give only immediate pleasure and later chronic illness.

-goofing around

-acting like kids

-HEROISM: pretending like you’re a hero, usually a pretend one

-getting people to look at you

 

The Terrestrial Holiday, Thanksgiving:

 

-FOOD: wholesome foods

-appreciating family / those who appreciate us

-HEROISM: giving reverence to / remembering heroes who have gone before (to make America, etc.)

-honoring America for its freedom

 

The Celestial Holiday, Christmas:

 

-FOOD: giving food to the poor

-HEROISM: worshiping Jesus Christ, the prototypical hero who can help you become a hero, and doing heroic acts

-pure joy

 

Self-Mastery by Elder Russel M Nelson – Lecture Highlights shorten

General Conference Oct 1985

 

Topics include health, exercise, word of wisdom, addiction, chastity

For audio and video of this message, click here or use this URL: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1985/10/self-mastery?lang=eng
-FASTING & CRAVINGS: “Fasting gives you confidence to know that your spirit can master appetite… Fasting fortifies discipline over appetite and helps to protect against later uncontrolled cravings and gnawing habits…
-ALCOHOL: “In order to avoid water that might be contaminated, we were even counseled to brush our teeth with an alcoholic beverage. We chose not to follow that counsel, but simply did what we had learned to do once a month. We fasted that first day, thinking we could introduce simple food and fluids gradually thereafter. Later, we were the only ones in our group without disabling illness…
STIMULANTS: “as you develop courage to say no to alcohol, tobacco, and other stimulants, you gain additional strength. You can then refuse conspiring men—those seditious solicitors of harmful substances or smut. You can reject their evil enticements to your body.
If you yield to anything that can addict, and thus defy the Word of Wisdom, your spirit surrenders to the body. The flesh then enslaves the spirit. This is contrary to the purpose of your mortal existence. And in the process of such addiction, your life span is likely to be shortened, thereby reducing the time available for repentance by which your spirit might attain self-mastery over your body…
-CHASTITY: “Shakespeare expressed such self-conflict as one of his characters contemplating conquest in lust spoke these lines:
What win I, if I gain the thing I seek?

A dream, a breath, a froth of fleeting joy.

Who buys a minute’s mirth to wail a week?

Or sells eternity to get a toy?

For one sweet grape who will the vine destroy? …

EXERCISE: “I would not want you to neglect your body. It deserves daily care. Physical conditioning through regular exercise requires self-mastery too. I marvel at Elder Joseph Anderson, now in his ninety-sixth year. For decades, the strength of his spirit over his body has induced him to swim regularly. But his motivation has never been to attain physical longevity. That has come only incidentally. His desire has been to serve God and His anointed. Elder Anderson has followed what I label as the Lord’s prescription for a long and useful life. Those faithful in “magnifying their calling, are sanctified by the Spirit unto the renewing of their bodies. They become … the elect of God.” (D&C 84:33–34.) Elder Anderson’s exercise program agrees with the perspective of Paul, who said: “Bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.” (1 Tim. 4:8.) Handsome and fit, Elder Anderson personifies this scripture: “Glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” (1 Cor. 6:20.)

– TITHING & HONESTY: “As you work during the productive years of life, whether at home or in the field, in the factory or at a workbench, reputation is built and character is forged as you develop self-mastery. Faithful payment of tithing is part of that process. It defends you against dishonesty or shabby temptations. Courageous accountability for your own actions becomes a cherished prize.

-ENTERTAINMENT & SPEECH: It really matters what you listen to, what you look at, what you think, say, and do. Select music that will strengthen your spirit. Control your speech; keep it free from profanity and vulgarity. Follow the teachings of this proverb: “My mouth shall speak truth; and wickedness is an abomination to my lips. “All the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing … perverse in them.” (Prov. 8:7–8.)

-LONELINESS, DEATH, & SERVICE: “remember a concept expressed by my father some time after my mother had passed away. Your grandparents had been married for sixty-four years. When someone asked how he was doing, my father simply stated, “I’m lonely, but I’m not lonesome.” Do you know what he meant? Though he was now without his sweetheart, he was so busy assisting family and friends, he had replaced sorrow with service and had displaced self-pity with selfless love. He had found joy in following the timeless example of the Master.

-ENDURE TO THE END: “Scriptures tutor us at least twenty-six times* to endure to the end to attain eternal life.

-BODY & SPIRIT TO JUDGEMENT: “the soul, composed of the resurrected body and the eternal spirit, … will come before the great judge to receive its final assignment for the eternity” (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, ed. Edward L. Kimball, Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1982, p. 46.)

– TRIAL & SUCCESS: “not an age in life passes without temptation, trial, or torment experienced through your physical body. But as you prayerfully develop self-mastery, desires of the flesh may be subdued. And when that has been achieved, you may have the strength to submit to your Heavenly Father, as did Jesus, who said, “Not my will, but thine, be done.” (Luke 22:42.)

 

Chapter: Core Priorities & Views for The Daily Religious Life

 

Sections:

Introduction

Education
Music

Preaching

Family

Vocation

Philosophy

Health

Friendships

Hope

 

 

INTRODUCTION:

Primarily be known as a religious person. One who seeks religious skills, religious causes, religious language, religious recreation, etc.

EDUCATION:

Unlock new skills and feed curiosity.

Commit to lifelong learning, including reading books every day.

Commit to uniting the human family and unlocking The mysteries of the past through foreign language competency. Hebrew is the Lord’s language, emphasize learning and teaching it. If you know a foreign language, be committed to maintaining it and using it for good in the world.

Reject the false theories of evolution socialism and communism and recognize the duty to promote true science and government. Accept the religious world view as true wonderful and the exciting revolution that will change the world forever for a majestic future.

Believe in waking early, regularly exercising the body, and the daily reading of books, practicing instruments and languages, and searching the scriptures, as these things need daily practice to be attained.

MUSIC:

Value the power of music and dance to open the soul to joy and relationships. Commit to up keeping musical instrument skill, and learning many other instruments.

PREACHING:

Be dedicated to preaching the gospel and defending church doctrines.

Become a latter-day saint philosopher. I ask bold questions and give bold answers. Publish findings in every feasible way to uplift the human race. Brigham Young Parly Pratt hugh nibbly and many others endorse this mission. Not everyone will understand it or support it but the Holy Ghost drives one to it.

Above all studies & activities, these preside: the study of religion & the preaching thereof.

Make it relentlessly clear the why and how of living every gospel doctrine and standard in complete Holiness to the Lord and rejecting all false teachings.

Believe that are answers to the questions, that the evidence stands with the truth, and that the defender of the kingdom of God may become so well equipped that he can have no issue in defending every doctrine and practice of the people of Zion.

FAMILY:

Commit to putting marriage and parenting as top priorities. Invest time learning and playing with family. Treat family with respect friendliness and openness. Never resort to force and abuse in fulfilling family roles.

 

Each child needs time its parents regularly.

VOCATION:

Disavow the pursuit of wealth.

Believe in independence, self-reliance, and learning useful traits. Become familiar with invention which promotes the betterment of mankind. Believe in the importance of temporal labors and that all things should be kept in their proper order. Do not believe that it is the duty of a man to spend all his time in spiritual arguments, but rather to testify and declare doctrines of reality and let it stand, then move on to manage all the duties of life. Hobbies we choose to pursue must be useful, preferably on multiple levels.

Trust God will provide and aid daily in the pursuit of providing well, and that those who favor gods laws will ultimately come out on top.

PHILOSOPHY:

Commit to traditionalist not Progressive philosophies. A religious world view as taught by the prophets.

Create the ideal. Do not blame the imperfections of others, but build despite handicaps of all kinds in family, self, and elsewhere. If there is beauty, create it. Mastery, discover it. Truth, uncover it. Joy, embrace it. Do not wait for Zion, but build it right here.

Avoid extremes. Seeing both sides of an argument. Avoid judging others. Love the taste of freedom, and seek the Lord.

HEALTH:

Nutrition and fitness are requirements of happiness. Animal products are not necessary in times of plenty and only for emergencies, & are connected with disease illness and misery. Reject the standard American diet as toxic & evil, and seek whole nutritious foods instead.

Personal health is not the top priority, and other duties often override the need for sleep. We should get a lot into a day, in having a sense of urgency, in pushing ones limits, in not over sleeping.

Seek health in personal intensive activities, but particularly in activities with my children, service to others, and some amount of intense personal fitness. Enjoy sports, as they build relationships, strengthen bodies, and bring overall balance and health when used with discretion.

 

Humans should be healthy, using the BMI guidelines, and glorify God and happify their fellow beings in being beautiful according to the nature of their creation.

FRIENDSHIPS:

Make new and keep old friendships. Commit to respect and good boundaries, not pushing others into what they don’t seek. Befriend everyone and invite then to higher ways. Seek as closest friends those who value Zion first.

HOPE

Trust that a better world will come soon, that your employment will be most satisfying, that God will teach you more than your fondest dream, that your family relationships will overflow the soul with joy, that your skills in all things beautiful and useful will increase, that your people will have wealth and brotherly kindness, that Earth will become a garden paradise, that you will soon have personal acquaintance with Christ & Father in Heaven, that your body and mind will soon become celestial, that your children will be saved in God’s kingdom, that you will have time to learn and a sharp mind to recall and understand, that you will be yet still a great missionary for God throughout the world, that the voices of doubt and despair in your mind will cease and that you will resist every temptation.


Chapter: What do we see when people get away from Gospel Centered Lives?

 

-immodesty

-sexual movies/TV

-R rated movies

-tolerance

-idleness

-greed

-elaborate clothing

-foul language

-show up at church sometimes but don’t contribute

-video game addiction

-postponed marriage

-postponed childbearing

-word of wisdom leniency

-neglect of scripture study

-rare & shallow prayer

-infrequent temple attendance

-white lies

-tolerance for apostate groups

-excessive social lives

-complaining attitudes

-entitlement

-cessation of learning

-cruelty towards children

-lack of discipline for children

-slothful approach to counsel from church leaders

-political complacency

-disinterest in one’s neighbors

-a rushed life with no time for others

-hostility toward the church

Sort these comments on movies

 

Final overview cons:

Obsession with fiction
Ignorance of real history
Exposure to excessive violence
Probably better things to do
Many are so fantastic they suggest reality is dull.
No God. Some suggest the absence of God is simply too much to tolerate, and that we should spend our time using only the abundant resources wherein characters are devoted to the real God in the real world, as these are most applicable to our lives.

Hollywood is scandalous and destroys just about everything they touch

 

 

Comments to analyze and sort:

 

some of your basic assumptions about these things are not necessarily true. At least not universally. Especially About Narnia which is 100% Christian allegory in my opinion. Obviously there are some things thrown in that are at most debatable, but … have you read the scriptures lately? Because they are full of harlots, excessive violence, single viewpoint historical accounts, pagans, allegories, stories, parables, wars, cannibalism, and on and on. I believe there is beauty and truth in many things… and many of those things are fiction and art. Creativity is the blessing and nature of God. There are obviously things to avoid. And things to introduce at appropriate ages and maturity levels, but flat out avoiding things because there are things that might elicit a discussion with a child is preposterous at best. To teach someone how to be a disciple, they must know how to minister, and the avoidance of all things that cause discomfort and questions is no way to develop empathy.

 

 

Zion is Joyous: Good Times After Leaving Babylon

 

Leaving Babylon involves withdrawing from things we used to enjoy which we have found are not the Lord’s way. In this article I will briefly mention some of those things which we may want to leave behind. But after leaving them, then what? How do we find joy together as friends and family, without dabbling in fallen culture? Here are some ideas…

Sections:

ARTISTIC CREATION

DANCE

SPORTS

OUTDOORS

LEARNING

VISITING

WORK & SERVICE

MUSIC

TREATS

DATING

ANIMAL HUSBANDRY

ARTISTIC CREATION:
Children (& adults) love to create.
-wood working
-painting, sculpture
-cooking
-sewing
-origami

-Legos, blocks, Knex, trains, ball-rollercoasters, wooden ships/planes…
-Elder Scott would paint.

DANCE:
-Ballet
-Irish
-Folk
-English country swing
-some forms of eastern & country swing
-(remember to leave behind costumes & methods that do not invite the spirit, or that provoke lust)

-Brigham Young loved to dance

SPORTS:
-wrestling. Joseph Smith loved to wrestle, and often asked even strangers if they wanted to wrestle him. This is a good winter indoor sport – throw down some mats in the living room
-sparring & target sports such as sword fencing, paintball/airsoft/nerf, HEMA (historical European martial arts), AMA (Asian martial arts), target shooting.

(But don’t kill animals for sport, President Kimball says this is a sin if not needed for food.)
-(not so much watching sports. Prophets have rebuked us becoming lazy unskilled spectators via TV. Further, we don’t want to feed into a culture of Sabbath breaking etc.)
-(I place strong cautions against skateboarding. Though fun, it is particularly saturated in evil rude rebellious culture. You must chose where to draw the line in cultural connections to various activities. When in doubt, do without.)

OUTDOORS:
-hike near your home. Elder McConkie said great men climb mountains.
-walks around town with family or friends. This is also the quintessential traditional method of courting. It’s free and allows for great conversation.
-camping. This is hands down the largest reported family fun event when compared to all other family recreation events when youth rate their favorite family activities.
-(do not skip church and other Sabbath worship to have more time camping etc. Many prophets have discouraged this. Even traveling large distances on the Sabbath often leads to shopping, working, and taking worship lightly, sending a message to youth that fun is more important than God.)

LEARNING:
-Friends over for food & conversation about the signs of the times, etc. When Bruce McConkie and Joseph Fielding Smith got together, they didn’t discuss politics or the weather, they basked in talking about the doctrines of the kingdom.
-car rides can be great times to teach
-You’de be surprised at how fun learning can be, even for kids. A deep gospel conversation can thrill them and keep them asking questions for hours.
-Hugh Nibley says we all have a full time job learning the history of our world.
-hands on sciences can be great fun
-create a reading culture. Fill your home with books. Let your children observe you reading jot only fluff books, but deep books. Like the Ben Carson family, let the wonder if reading lift your family to an entirely different way of life.
-Brigham Young spoke of how in the millennium, as there will be no free loaders and we will all share in the work, we will get all the days work done in only 2-3 hours, and can spend the rest of our time doing what we were really sent to this Earth to do, namely learning. Brigham also said 8 hours to sleep, 8 to work, 8 to play. By play we can easily reason he referred to, at least in large part, learning. He also spoke of how he would love to study chemistry.
-The Bruce McConkie family wasn’t an entertainment-based family. Bruce didn’t know anything about sports and didn’t teach his children sports. Though they did hike (Bruce said great men climb mountains) and sing etc., much of their leisure time was spent learning & preaching the gospel.

VISITING
-tell stories
-read aloud, particularly classics & other books which teach morals or skills.
-read silently, but still together
-healthy snacking
-tell about your day, the future, etc.
-look at family pictures & family videos.
-(don’t need a movie every time we settle in for free time. If that’s your go-to recreation, you are living far beneath your privileges)
-(I strongly recommend against card games. Many prophets have spoken against these time filler trivial wasters of life.)
-(I do not recommend spending inordinate time and money on recreation. President Packer said no one owes children entertainment.)
-(I recommend children not having cell phones, or at least very limited use educational large tablets not connected to Wi-Fi or data. Not only spiritually dangerous, phones waste inordinate amounts of time)
-(I recommend no video games. There are simply many better ways to enjoy life, socialize, learn, problem solve, etc. VGs are overly stimulating and will thereby keep your child from turning to healthy recreation such as reading & instruments. It’s like the rat who chooses the cocaine instead of the food constantly until it starves to death.)

WORK & SERVICE:
-JustServe.org and app to focus on the needs of others
-meeting neighbors
-helping neighbors; get tools for the little kids so they can feel involved
-gardening. It has been said that there is in dirt an enzyme that produces dopamine in the brain
-ministering assignments
-Vocational training can be very fun; fun experimenting/tinkering can be what inspires/leads to discovery of what one is interested in for a vocation.
-in the McConkie home, when father came home from work and his children were just sitting around, the first thing he would say to them would be, “isn’t there something you could be doing to help mother?”
-President Kimball said a life full of leisure and free time is unnatural and unhealthy.

MUSIC:
-in the spirit of Zion being independent, learn to make your own music. The confidence and deep abiding joy that come from learning piano (usually the foundation) and other instruments cannot be overstated. Learning instruments also helps youth orient themselves toward classical symphonic music.
-uplifting genres include classical, symphonic, folk, choral, Celtic, opera, etc.
-gone are the days when families would sit around the front room or the fireplace and sing songs together. Bring them back!
-Presidents of the Church have said in regard to music, there is so much good, don’t bother with the bad. Easy access to beautiful music is one of the most powerful tools from the Lord in these last days. (And easy access to evil music is one of the most powerful tools of the Devil in these last days.)
-(I highly advise against pop, alternative, rock (even soft rock), & rap. Studies have been conducted wherein these have been shown to correlate with unchaste behavior.)

TREATS:
-Bannana cashew vanilla extract ice cream
-berry smoothies
-popcorn with yeast, cinnamon, etc.
-apples with peanut butter
-see Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s book on how to feed kids right
-(partake not in the plagues of fast food, junk food, etc. It’s tempting to justify using these to build relationships, but such is Babylon logic. Junk food is a gateway to other drugs, getting a person in the habit of overstimulating dopamine & insulin.)

DATING: (weekly for couples & mature singles over 16)
-Walks are the way it was don’t for millennia. It works great. It’s free, its conversation stimulating. It releases endorphins, which you then associate with the person you walk with.
-(avoid movies, they don’t build relationships nearly as well as conversation & interactive activities.)
-picnic. Way cheaper than restaurants.
-(avoid any places where there will be bad influences or unsettling unholy music)

ANIMAL HUSBANDRY:
-President Monson said every boy needs a dog.
-learning to care for and even train animals can be an excellent & fun way to teach behavioral psychology & relationship skills.
-horses, though somewhat expensive, teach many things, and also double as a transportation preparedness.
-with caring for animals youth easily step into the world of biology, anatomy, & physiology, which can then lead them to microbiology, chemistry, etc.
-though we avoid eating meat as directed in the D&C, raising farm animals is fun, educational, and helps with preparedness.
-hunting for meat can be educational preparedness when the youth understand that we eat meat only sparingly in time of need.

 

 

Add this in somewhere on music philosophy

 

*key is that if it were in foreign lang, would it be disturbing?

 

*key is if they search that artist will they find evil?

 

 

We are Living in The Great and Spacious Building, A Post-Christian World – Quotes

-Lehi had a dream (1 Nephi 8) representing the love of Christ vs the evil of Satan. There was a great and spacious building floating in the air where people made fun of Christ.

-“Largely because of television, instead of looking over into that spacious building, we are, in effect, living inside of it. That is your fate in this generation. You are living in that great and spacious building.” (President Boyd K. Packer)

– “The goal of honoring the Lord and submitting ourselves to His will is not as valued in today’s society as it has been in the past. Some Christian leaders of other faiths believe we are living in a post-Christian world.” (Elder Quinton L. Cook)

 

 

Apostolic Warning Against Cyberspace

Elder Bednar gives “an Apostolic warning” about getting too into avatars, virtual realities, and certain cyberspace interactions in an address titled “Things As They Really Are”. In that address, Elder Bednar says “a simulation or model can lead to spiritual impairment and danger if the fidelity is high and the purposes are bad—such as experimenting with actions contrary to God’s commandments or enticing us to think or do things we would not otherwise think or do “because it is only a game.” I raise an apostolic voice of warning about the potentially stifling, suffocating, suppressing, and constraining impact of some kinds of cyberspace interactions and experiences upon our souls. The concerns I raise are not new; they apply equally to other types of media, such as television, movies, and music. But in a cyber world, these challenges are more pervasive and intense. I plead with you to beware of the sense-dulling and spiritually destructive influence of cyberspace technologies that are used to produce high fidelity and that promote degrading and evil purposes. If the adversary cannot entice us to misuse our physical bodies, then one of his most potent tactics is to beguile you and me as embodied spirits to disconnect gradually and physically from things as they really are. In essence, he encourages us to think and act as if we were in our premortal, unembodied state. And, if we let him, he can cunningly employ some aspects of modern technology to accomplish his purposes. Please be careful of becoming so immersed and engrossed in pixels, texting, earbuds, twittering, online social networking, and potentially addictive uses of media and the Internet that you fail to recognize the importance of your physical body and miss the richness of person-to-person communication. Beware of digital displays and data in many forms of computer-mediated interaction that can displace the full range of physical capacity and experience.” (June 2010- Ensign, https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/2010/06/things-as-they-really-are?lang=eng).

 

The Case Against Video Games: Bazar Brainlessness & Wasted Time (combo these into 1 doc with subheaders, and therein give the VG and Against VG side)

There are some arguments in favor of video games, but in this chapter we will look at the possible harmful effects of video games.

Video Games don’t teach a life lesson and they rob from other important social and intellectual play, Perhaps our pleasures need to be contributing to a larger ideal..

 

-Beware the virtual reality effect, which is that people consider that life itself is a program of little importance, and that it is therefore not important to treat others respectfully. Some even take this to the extreme and kill others claiming to be setting them free from the simulation/Matrix/game etc. Some lose the moral compass of fairness in the 1st person mentality, thinking that you can and should do anything and everything to promote your own success and welfare without thinking on the welfare and happiness of others. Elder Bednar gives “an Apostolic warning” about getting too into avatars, virtual realities, and certain cyberspace interactions in an address titled “Things As They Really Are”. In that address, Elder Bednar says “a simulation or model can lead to spiritual impairment and danger if the fidelity is high and the purposes are bad—such as experimenting with actions contrary to God’s commandments or enticing us to think or do things we would not otherwise think or do “because it is only a game.” I raise an apostolic voice of warning about the potentially stifling, suffocating, suppressing, and constraining impact of some kinds of cyberspace interactions and experiences upon our souls. The concerns I raise are not new; they apply equally to other types of media, such as television, movies, and music. But in a cyber world, these challenges are more pervasive and intense. I plead with you to beware of the sense-dulling and spiritually destructive influence of cyberspace technologies that are used to produce high fidelity and that promote degrading and evil purposes. If the adversary cannot entice us to misuse our physical bodies, then one of his most potent tactics is to beguile you and me as embodied spirits to disconnect gradually and physically from things as they really are. In essence, he encourages us to think and act as if we were in our premortal, unembodied state. And, if we let him, he can cunningly employ some aspects of modern technology to accomplish his purposes. Please be careful of becoming so immersed and engrossed in pixels, texting, earbuds, twittering, online social networking, and potentially addictive uses of media and the Internet that you fail to recognize the importance of your physical body and miss the richness of person-to-person communication. Beware of digital displays and data in many forms of computer-mediated interaction that can displace the full range of physical capacity and experience.” (June 2010- Ensign, https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/2010/06/things-as-they-really-are?lang=eng). For a documentary on how Hollywood is pushing a doctrine of life being a virtual reality, and some of the consequences of that narrative, see “Hollywood’s War on God” by Good Fight Ministries (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zC7jYfL2Ufc).

-ensure they aren’t losing out on too many social activities replacing them with video games

 

If you are spending large amounts of time on video games, you might do well to consider whether you’re avoiding something about your real life which is causing you to spend so much time in a virtual one. Life is short, and we can do great things in it, even adventurous things which are real! We need to sharpen our bodies and minds and souls so we can take on challenges in life and become real heroes! As great as it is to be skilled at a game, it doesn’t begin to compare to be skilled at something productive. I never heard of successful video game playing being a key to heralding in world peace.

 

Introductory Caution from “For the Strength of Youth” section on entertainment and media, “Satan uses media to deceive you by making what is wrong and evil look normal, humorous, or exciting. He tries to mislead you into thinking that breaking God’s commandments is acceptable and has no negative consequences for you or others. Do not attend, view, or participate in anything that is vulgar, immoral, violent, or pornographic in any way. Do not participate in anything that presents immorality or violence as acceptable.” (https://www.lds.org/youth/for-the-strength-of-youth/entertainment-and-media?lang=eng)

 

-Interactions with other humans including touch warmth etc. only had in a personal contact, don’t occur in screen time. Development of the brain and everything else thrives with human contact. Even baby carriers are dangerous because it takes away from time one on one with mother.  Read “the connected child” by Karyn Purvis, who specializes in working with difficult children.

-Screens overstimulate nervous system in infants/toddlers

-potential to have autism-like symptoms if use too much https://www.madinamerica.com/…/virtual-autism-explain…/

-potential for addiction

-rapid images the little brains can’t handle i.e. before age 3, could if exposed greatly before that age decrease social and language skill

-negatively limit and effect the prefrontal cortex

-kids zone out when on screens and neglect their conscience whispering to them to attend to their duties. It could be said that video games have an overwhelming effect on children, which results in a minimalized agency, a captivating effect similar to drugs, which take over further and deeper than the user intended.

-speaker from BYU who is a research doctor of neuroscience- one of the foremost experts in the field. She talked about the damage that screen time does to the developing brain in terms of physiology, emotional growth and potential for addiction

-too much games and kids can be at a loss as to how to play creatively without them (like how people who use alcohol begin to not be able to have a good time without alcohol (same goes for other drug abuse, pornography use, fornication, gambling, over eating, etc.))

-social media in particular can be a source of much negative peer pressure

-a lack of hands on aspect can decrease learning / long term storage of what is learned

Screens present a lot of sensory output at the same time

-screens can tempt kids to not practice musical instruments, to not do homework etc., so you have to monitor them to make sure they aren’t abusing screens

-screen time potentially correlated with fine motor delay (the ‘why’ on that should be obvious)

-may cause ADHD symptoms; see book: The Pied Pipers of Autism—How TV, Video, and Toys Cause ASD. 2011: Merced by Oestreicher, L.

-potentially decrease long term memory

-potentially disrupt sleep time

-Even though gaming with others could build relationships, we likely should try building relationships in productive ways rather than trivial ways.

-Some military trainers speak of how they use violent games to train their soldiers to kill, as it is otherwise unnatural to kill. They know fully well that these games desensitize to violence.

-See Ensign article “It’s Only Violence”

-Though fun is inherently good, we should avoid fun which is a slippery slope, which video games often are.

Make your entertainment high quality culture: “Too often we use many hours for fun and pleasure, clothed in the euphemism ‘I’m recharging my batteries.’ Those hours could be spent reading and studying to gain knowledge, skills, and culture.” (President Henry B Eyring in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

 

 

 

 

 

The Case for Video Games: Explorative Puzzles

 

 

While I don’t find much use for video games in my home and am very concerned about potential harm that can be caused by them, but I want to present the arguments in favor of these games to let the reader decide for themselves.

 

Some games can lead to increased problem solving skills (ie Zelda, lots of puzzles, or other strategy games; I’ve seen brilliant kids who use those; what other venue can we give them to channel that brilliance? Or does it contribute to the brilliance? Perhaps it gives them a channel to pour their otherwise unused energy into?). Sometimes the game could have a noble plotline. We can’t condemn all violence as much of it appears in scripture, but perhaps the issue is acting out the violence? idk. Joseph Smith liked to wrestle… I heard one person say that childhood is about joyful exploring in a safe environment; naturally it goes beyond this in that they need to learn important lessons, but is there such a thing as merit existing in simple pleasure?

 

 

Video games can be fun recreation, can help build relationships in team play, and can even build problem solving skills, which are critical to success in any field. Some military trainings could involve using game simulators.

 

I’m familiar with various simulation games which allow someone to simulate farming, flying airplanes, driving commercial trucks, responding to medical emergencies in ambulances and hospitals, and other helpful simulation.

 

The merit of video games is that they are fun, which is good for its own sake. To convince yourself they’re good, you don’t need to decide they’ll give your kids a PhD and make them social gurus and improve their reaction time, or unlock the mysteries of the universe; it suffices that they be fun, engaging, and not evil. Childhood is about fun and exploring in a safe environment full of people who care. Kids learn best by playing and exploring.  Some enjoy immersing themselves in a different world, learn its rules, solve its puzzles, explore its offerings and challenges.

-many tout things about video games without ever having played them, or conducted research on them, or familiarizing themselves with the corpus of research on the subject at present

 

-do what works for your family. Some children are more sensitive than others in various sensory and other ways, discern what will help them have a happy fulfilling healthy life. This said, be sensitive to information as you investigate what is best for your family.

 

 

-pretend scenarios in gaming, as in fairy tales, can help expand the mind. Albert Einstein said if you want your kids to be smart, tell them fairy tales. If you want them to be super smart, tell them even more fairy tales.

 

-Some games are better than others. Cheap games requiring little to no thought, but which are addicting in nature, such as Bejeweled, can easily be understood to be harmful, and just filling space instead of bringing real rich enjoyment, etc. There are many ways to release the stress valve in this life, and we can understand that some are better than others. If you or your child has a passionate interest in one of these time-filler time games, see to it that this isn’t all they are spending their time (including their fun time) on. Help them explore deeper joys, expose them to higher ways, and they will by nature gravitate toward that which is more enriching and fulfilling.

 

-Be involved but not overly controlling of your children’s desire to explore with games. A wise friend told me, “Letting them choose their own activities is best for their fun and sense of independence/confidence/growth–that whole “fun” thing again.  But if you aren’t involved at all, you shouldn’t be surprised if they wind up lost.  That is true of anything.  So if you’re worried, just be involved.  Expose them to enough things that they can form their own opinions, or they’ll just latch onto the first thing they’re exposed to.  ”

 

-Amount of time gaming? Limits are good, but not a precise science. Try something and see if it’s too few or too much. And be bold in following those feelings, even if the neighbor kids’ parents place different limits than you do. Culture in the home is sacred, and can easily differ greatly from house to house based on preferences customs and values.

 

Perhaps those who are against video games whole sale are overly concerned about potential problems that could arise from using them. Perhaps a better approach is to watch and see if these are good as you try them for yourself, and address any issues as they arise. Trusting expert opinions can only get you so far, as experts exist on both sides of the argument, and often have bias opinions which drive their research.

-Interactive play as seen in a video game may be better than watching a movie when it comes to relaxing recreation as the are more stimulating.
-VGs can be cooperative play
-Give brilliant minds puzzles to solve
-Reward kids for all the help they give, may they feel we showered upon them  every possible delight,  and not that to live next door would have been preferred but don’t compete to keep up with the Jones’ on entertainment.

-We all need to relieve stress sometimes. (But not so much as is pushed)

-allow puzzle like games, not brainless flashy ones, and never overtly violent ones
– recent studies show screen time is ok and even beneficial so long as there is balance, that there is also time for outside play and make believe play, time to dissect bugs, time to play sports with other kids, time to go on dates, time to cook with parents, etc. Games are also so stimulating its easy to not get enough sleep. If ‘behind’ in school, limit or eliminate games.
-though some video game users have unbridled passion for gaming and waste opportunity in life for games, it is also true that those who are taught to bridle their passions in this subject can use the games as a great intellect building tool. Look at the computer scientists, the mathematicians, the physicists which come to us often from the gaming scenario
– in a similar way that books can assist us in building reality and understanding things which are otherwise hard to explain, so can games open the mind to new possibilities.

-PhD speech therapists say screen time research now is saying it’s not bad; many show progress with the use of screens

-recent UK study says should not be limited, but rather should be balanced with other things in life they should be doing

-2 hour daily limit says American pediatrics: https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/commentary/ct-perspec-screen-time-smartphone-tablets-tv-1126-story.html?fbclid=IwAR38GV3fpgWpm4DGJilKoq44QMSCOA21NNrqYMq5v42BHt4y3e2_teh5yqg

-I’ve seen intelligent people who grew up doing lots of VGs, I believe this channeled their intelligence into puzzles, things which their minds could calculate and resolve, challenges which pushed them to use their intellect instead of being so bored that he may have otherwise reverted to getting into trouble.

-a misconception that kids who love technology are lazy

-some of the best careers these days are in technology, and games etc. can help them prepare to work in those fields. For many, technology is their future.

-might consider several days a week which are no screen time days

-video game use may lead to autism symptoms https://www.madinamerica.com/…/virtual-autism-explain…/

-google earth is a great exploration tool app, same with the astronomy exploration apps

-we lose the pieces to games like checkers etc., so having an electronic version of those games can be helpful.

-kids see parents using screens, so they should learn to responsibly use them too

-expose kids to it so they can see how to use it righteously, or else when on their own the first thing they will do is get all the pop games, which are bad games.

-We can show them good vs bad games, so they know to reject the bad and accept the good, so they know that good exists in the game world, this will give them the moral courage to not cave to the bad. It’s like music: knowing good music helps us fill a void and thus takes away the temptation to use bad music

-kids can have both hours of the day playing outside, and hours of screens. They are homeschooled so they have extra time, they can use the gaming for not only peaceful and cooperative fun, but for intellectually stimulating exercises. There is more to games than the “sports” type games, though those can help with strategy too. There are games like Zelda, which are a fun way of doing increasingly difficult puzzles.

-nature and animal national geographic or Smithsonian documentaries on YouTube are great for kids to learn.

-documentaries for the adult are helpful, and the kids may want to watch or listen in

-games can be an incentive to get chores and homework done without having to resort to pumping them full of candy, yelling at them, or coercing them. It’s positive reinforcement, which means we can avoid frustrated parents and  disgruntle children.

– iPads can be used not only for games, but for writing, reading, and other more specifically academic activities.

-Just because you allow technology doesn’t mean that’s ALL they do.

-games can give people a break from each other; they play together all day and can enjoy

-One use of technology could be having educational songs in the background they can pick up on much info

-kids (especially those with ADHD) can have a hard time focusing, the fun aspect of an electronic game can help them focus on completing the puzzle at hand in the game, puzzles which they otherwise would not complete

-Learn keyboarding the earlier the better so they can keep a regular journal, write papers, be organized etc., perhaps with their own external hard drive with their files on it which they plug into our computer to do work.

-see what works for your family; fun is good in and of itself; if it becomes a problem, seek a solution, rather than the other way around of “calling a plumber to look for problems”, instead call the plumber when a pipe bursts. “Sufficient is the evil unto the day thereof”

-Kids who are having fun will learn faster than kids not engaged. Kids love screens. Many kids (especially kids with social difficulties like kids with autism) seem to learn certain things better through screens

-many against gaming haven’t played them

-it is well known the playing and exploring are excellent ways for kids to learn; you have that in much of gaming

-almost always games have some sort of challenge; kids can learn that they can do hard things with practice; they can also teach themselves how to figure things out without having to go to someone for help when it is challenging

-some games are meant to be addictive and have an abnormally high flash rate, such as bejeweled. Others such as Zelda are full of real puzzles and can be intellectually stimulating.

-letting kids chose what activities they do for their fun time builds their confidence independence and overall growth, rather than being told what they can and can’t do all the time. Childhood is about fun and exploring in a safe environment full of people who care.

-a parent involved in the child’s gaming can prevent the child from going way to far into them and prevent them from selecting games which are obviously evil

-Expose them to enough things that they can form their own opinions, or they’ll just latch onto the first thing they’re exposed to.

-time limits are a good idea, though not something to fret about being exact about

-the reason kids who play lots of games often become obese is because they snack while playing. If this becomes a problem in your home, you might restrict snacks during gaming, or give healthier snacks for during gaming

-to prevent sleep related issues when it comes to screens, it may be wise to keep all electronic devices in the parents’ bedroom at night

 

 

Edit

 

Keeps you thinking, but you should be thinking  about reality solving real problems and learning ereal history.
So yes for some vocational fun but no not to take place of our ed sys. Unless you made history ed games…etc…

Vg ed because curiosity is more powerful than fear of punishment. The teacher is to be more of a mentor helping the student explore their interests. We can’t tell them which game to play and when to play it this will go against the nature of the game. According to their questions they must explore. What does this run against the theory we’ve always had the ancient ways of teaching someone?
Is it against human nature to expect a child to learn what they need to learn?

 

There’s a seperate drive in the brain seeking play. We will work to enter the play arena. Rats will too. Games are a great reward for good behavior.

Gaming pros list ensure I have:
Pros:
-Interactive play as seen in a video game is better than watching a movie when it comes to relaxing recreation
-Cooperative play
-Give brilliant minds puzzles to solve
-Reward kids for all the help they give, may they feel we showered upon them  every possible delight,  and not that to love next door would have been preferred
-Have something the adults enjoy which they can do with the kids
-give the adults a stress relief
-allow puzzle like games, not brainless flashy ones, and never overtly violent ones
– recent studies show screen time is ok and even beneficial so long as there is balance, that there is also time for outside play and make believe play, time to dissect bugs, time to play sports with other kids, time to go on dates, time to cook with parents, etc.
-those some video game users have unbridled passion for gaming and waste opportunity in life for games, it is also true that those who are taught to bridle their passions in this subject can use the games as a great intellect building tool. Look at the computer scientists, the mathmeticians, the physicists which come to us often from the gaming scenario
– in a similar way that nonfiction books can assist us in building reality and understanding things which are otherwise hard to explain, so can games open the mind to new possibilities.

 

 

 

 

 

Note:

this from statista.com shows average times kids and adults have with screens recently https://www.statista.com/statistics/804161/average-amount-screen-time-children-usa/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Competition & Violence Guidelines

Wendy Nelson reports in her book “The Heavens are Open” that if characters in a movie argue, President Russel M Nelson walks out of the movie! Praise the Lord for the revelation of this mighty standard! Truly this man speaks with God! She talks about how this is in following with the Saviors injunction to have zero contention. With this foundational principle of avoiding contention as the foundation, lets take a further look.

I know violence is bad, but wrestling and exercise/sport are good. Joseph Smith was a great wrestler. So where is the line between violence and ‘grappling’? Is it anger vs competition? Can we fight / spar in good spirits? Then we get into the violent gaming conversation (grappling games, war games, etc.). Is it OK if we’re shooting “aliens” / “bad guys” just not civilians? The For the Strength of Youth manual on entertainment states “Do not attend, view, or participate in anything that is vulgar, immoral, violent, or pornographic in any way. Do not participate in anything that presents immorality or violence as acceptable.” Some say let kids essentially chose their entertainment with some guidelines, focusing on letting them safely explore their interests/talents rather than micromanagement.

What about the stories of the hero’s with their bow and arrow, their sword on their horse, is it so different to have the hero holding a gun? Even scripture characters use “violence” when needed. Should we just say ‘hands off’ policy on violence unless someone is literally trying to kill us?

 

Can we picture George Washington, Captain Moroni, or Joseph Smith playing war/battle-based video games in their free time? It seems these men of combat who we hold highest in our esteem are they who liked it the least. One the other hand, perhaps what they do for recreation doesn’t matter so much as that they didn’t seek to have too much of it.

A study showed that those who watch violent media are slower to react with compassion to the suffering/needs of others. This violent media could include film, gaming, or even music with improper lyrics or tones. Are we sensitive, or past feeling (ref)?

As a father, I often take the role of “you can do it, be strong, toughen up, get ready for the outside world, compete, try it on your own, you don’t need help, make your own decision” sort of character.

I don’t think paintball is bad (glorified tag), so why would a game doing something similar be? It’s tricky and several factors are involved, such as one is killing the other is tagging, and one potencially involves gore and delight in bloodshed while the other does not. What is violence? The dictionary says _________. Is it just intent to harm? I suppose any sport could be violent if the intent was to harm the weak rather than to enjoy the fair exchange of skills.

 

Porter Rockwell certainly liked to shoot guns, and guns are often a friend to the friend of liberty, a tool to be respected and restrained rather than a venom to throw away.

In the book “Daughters in My Kingdom” (published by the Church about the Relief Society), one sister preaches that we should not let our children play with guns (perhaps she was referring to very small children? I would agree if such is the case.)

Joseph Smith reportedly said that those who tote firearms will one day live to regret that. Obviously, Joseph wasn’t anti-gun, he hired Porter to defend him with a rifle, and Joseph carried his sword when acting as military leader for the citizens of Nauvoo, him being the governor. He had a gun at Carthage, and some fault him for using it, but it is wise and just to defend oneself against a murderous mob.

To be immersed in blood baths and gore, and detailed killings, these things are obviously not good at all. If a game has a sense of fear and darkness, it is likely not of God. Perhaps the greatest measuring rod is the spirit which the activity produces. If it creates the spirit of contention (which is of the Devil), or if it produces a simple uplifting competitive activity.

As for violence in the games: does it glorify violence? You make the call. Kids wrestle, etc. Some “fighting” is more playful grappling than warfare. I don’t think paintball is bad, so why would a game doing something similar be? Granted it also seems that you’ll need to judge the disposition of the child to see if they are mature enough to remain a peaceable soul if they play such games. The body is a blessing from God which we can use to grapple etc. Joseph Smith liked to wrestle people, and was very good at it. Porter Rockwell certainly liked to shoot guns, and guns are often a friend to the friend of liberty, a tool to be respected and restrained rather than a venom to throw away. There is debate on the subject. In the book “Daughters in My Kingdom”, one sister preaches that we should not let our children play with guns (perhaps she was referring to very small children? I would agree if such is the case.) Also Joseph Smith reportedly said that those who tote firearms will one day live to regret that. Obviously, Joseph wasn’t anti-gun, he hired Porter to defend him with a rifle, and Joseph carried his sword when acting as military leader for the citizens of Nauvoo, him being the governor. It’s also good logic to say that you don’t bring a knife to a gun fight, and thus we should be armed in whatever grade equipment which the military has, so we could, as a local militia, defend ourselves if ever a tyrannical government sent troops upon us, as happened at that time of the revolution of America. So we see that men must deal in guns and so forth at times. We might consider that the age of man used to be lower than what it is now, namely that 12-year olds were essentially considered often mature enough to have a job, and perhaps a few years later to start a family if another mature candidate of their age so inclined. The historian will understand that we used to consider our younglings our able of understanding mature topics, and participating in the transition to adulthood at a younger season. Today a new advent of transition to adulthood from age 18-25 has risen, perhaps an older standard for maturity (as measured by the willingness to assume mature roles in society, namely those of being a spouse a parent and an independent worker (and yes college students can live on their own with their own created families and be independent workers, they need not wait for all those things until graduating college)). It seems to me reasonable that some amount of becoming familiar with weaponry through video game consoles could be beneficial in the fun aspect (fun is good in and of itself), and the aspect of learning respect for firearms. But to be immersed in blood baths and gore, and detailed killings, these things seem not good at all. If a game has a sense of fear and darkness, it is likely not of God. Perhaps the greatest measuring rod is the spirit which the activity produces. If it creates the spirit of contention (which is of the Devil), or if it produces a simple uplifting competitive activity.

Do not the heroes of the stories go about with their swords, the bow and arrow, and was not their bravery with those tools considered something of high regard? Do not even the characters of scripture at times use weapons? The Book of Mormon depicts that usually it is both parties in a way who are in the wrong, but it also points out that it is better to fight back to defend one’s self than to let an enemy mow you down.

It seems not very different wheather the hero wields a sword or a gun. Their hero is noble if he only uses force when absolutely needed, and never to an opponent unworthy of battle, never with by standards who need not be engaged.

It would also seem useless to have a conquest where there is no story, no scenario to show that the battle was needed. And surely if the character warring is doing so for an evil motive, such as taking money from bystanders not involved in a declared war of defense, surely such a character is the one who glorifies violence. To glorify violence, to love and thirst for blood, to war monger, to seek destruction, this is the opposite of the man who only resorts to violence when it is to defend life liberty and property, as such are sacred.

Perhaps it’s just a simulation and violence is only when we are using our body to harm someone else’s body? This cannot be. Violence must be an attitude and intention. It can be by word or thought as well as deed.

 

See also this Ensign article denouncing violence in entertainment: https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/2003/06/its-only-violence?lang=eng

 

 

-how does it make you feel about the holiness (sacredness) of life?

-are they in control like any good sport, or losing control?

-are they getting interpersonal skills, or are they known for being one who quickly resorts to violence?

-Do the characters get more or less power when they get angry?

-killing is crossing the line and no longer is ok, it’s not a sport we tolerate

-wrestling is good and right for body and soul

-there must be consent between competitors

-the scriptures tell us to not do violence or anything like unto it, and simulating is like unto!

-does it correctly portray good and evil?

-does it involve strategy, or just violence as the answer to everything?

-remember context, intent, boundaries, cooperation, sportsmanship,

-aggression in man needs to be expressed correctly

-3D simulation tricks the mind and leads it hungry for more since no physical activity accompanies it. Pause often for physical activity.

-is winning more important than people?

-not only have no evil, but have the presence of good, not a void

-sports, not violence, are the channel God has given us to entertain ourselves.

-would I be ok with myself doing this in real life? Do I wish for my subconscious repeat this scene of “my” actions over and again?

-Recall the need for restraint and self-control. As the scripture says, the man who controls his temper is better than the man who conquers cities (ref).

 

 

For me, I tend to look at when violence is gratuitous or being glorified. I think there are ways to tastefully show tough/violent events that is done with a respect towards the weight of subject matter but without gratuitous blood and slow motion and over focus on the violence that almost opens up this sort of glorification or blood lust.

Right now I’m learning a lot from reading about the Holocaust. There’s a lot of death, almost more than I can stomach, and yet the scriptures continually open up to me. I don’t think it’s right to dwell in or obsess over darkness, but still find it necessary to know the darkness around me so that I can fight it.

I can’t find it better stated, then how Moroni put it in his Chap. 7:
13 But behold, that which is of God inviteth and enticeth to do good continually; wherefore, every thing which inviteth and enticeth to do good, and to love God, and to serve him, is inspired of God.

Brigham Young says to beware tragedy violence in the arts: “Tragedy is favored by the outside world; I am not in favor of it. I do not wish murder and all its horrors and the villainy leading to it portrayed before our women and children. I want no child to carry home with it the fear of the fagot, the sword, the pistol, or the dagger, and suffer in the night from frightful dreams. I want such plays performed as will make the spectators feel well; and I wish those who perform to select a class of plays that will improve the public mind, and exalt the literary taste of the community.” (Brigham Young, JD 9:242; Remarks by President Brigham Young, made at the Dedication of the New Theater in Great Salt Lake City, March 6, 1862. Reported By: G. D. Watt.)

Pre-Mature Content Exposure Harms Children

 

As we analyze a movie, we need to look at not only the deeper meanings, but the surface meanings which many viewers will see. A big reason we need to make sure the audiences are mature and can analyze the bigger picture is because isolated scenes can lead someone to get the wrong idea. Young children in particular are only capable of fragmented understandings, and need content which is less dramatic which they can comprehend.

For example: an immature audience can see a sword fighting scene and say “swords are the way to solve all of our problems.” The mature person can see the same scene and say “swords were the last resort to solve that problem.”

If a child sees one of its parents abusing the other, it is considered child abuse, as no child should be exposed to that. Could we not argue then, that it is child abuse to expose children to horrific movies where abuse takes place? Surely the tender spirits of our children need to be protected with utmost care, and only a mature young adult should be exposed to such things.

Each parent needs to measure the maturity of their child to see what will and will not be appropriate for that child to see. Maturity is often different than just age related. For example, some people are ready for marriage and other adult roles earlier than others. Some youth are more prepared to understand the complexities of life than others.

 

Movie Philosophy

There are so many uplifting movies that we don’t need to trifle with the bad. No more sitting at the enemies’ table!

 

When screening movies we should be sensitive to more than just flagrant sexuality or violence. We should be sensitive to rude attitudes toward peers and parents. To subtle suggestions of rebellion, etc.

 

Wendy Nelson reports in her book “The Heavens are Open” that if characters in a movie argue, President Russel M Nelson walks out of the movie! Praise the Lord for the revelation of this mighty standard! Truly this man speaks with God!

 

There are great suggested movies at “Zion Tube”, a Joseph Smith Foundation website. They have a genius method of categorizing movies: simply as Good, Better, & Best. Naturally, many commonly viewed movies of all ratings don’t make it on to any of their lists.

 

Movies should teach, not just entertain. A movie without moral lessons should be thrown in the trash! We don’t have time for that! Sister Nelson pleads with us to realize our divine destiny on earth, and reminds us that we don’t have time to do things in ways other than the Lord’s way! Further, President Nelson told a group of Mission Presidents in training that when their 3-year missions were over, they were to return home and prepare for the Millennium. Truly His coming is neigh! May we not be guilty of whittling away our precious time!

 

 

 

 

 

Dance Standards

Not infrequently have the scriptures spoken of holy dances of celebration of the saints! Not unfrequently did the early Latter-day Saint pioneers dance upon the plains and in Zion! It is said that Brigham Young wanted to dance longer one evening, and when the night bugle sounded, he said in essence, ‘away with the bugle, I want to dance!’ and proceeded to do so until around 3am. Humans need to dance.

Corruption is found in dance anciently as well as our time. The ancient Arabian belly dance and the various sexual gyrations in many modern dance forms (too numerous to list) remind us that humans have no qualms about using their bodies to gain inappropriate advantage of one another. But as Brigham Young taught, there is ultimately no song or dance in hell. I’m also wary of many Latin dances (though not all) which overly emphasize sexual movements, albeit in a form that many consider beautiful. I would suggest that such things are too sacred for public display, even in simulations where some clothing is used (and usually not very much of it). The dance types listed in this presentation simply don’t include forms which I have deemed too questionable. One can throw in or take out inappropriate moves into just about any dance form, but certain types are inherently sexual. Many modern dances have no place in Zion.

The type of dance that music inspires people to do tells us lots about the quality of that music! The opposite is also true: if good music typically accompanies a certain dance form, that form will typically be good also. Dance is inseparably connected to music; it is the expression and interpretation of the sound, movements which mirror the sound, and sounds which mirror the movements. A society is on the “highway to hell” when their music doesn’t prompt them to dance righteously, or when they dance sensually to neutral or even good music.

Not even the BYU has a keen market on this topic. I remember being horrified a one of their dances. I had to take my wife and leave the room, the entire environment was akin to a den of thieves, a simple house of horrors, a place where no accountability was felt for one’s actions. I regret not leaving sooner than we did and felt deep shame that my people would do these things. Naturally the BYU is ahead of the curve on many moral issues when compared to other universities, but unfortunately in this and other worldly trends (like evolution), they follow suit, even if a ways behind, perhaps just far enough behind to where they think they aren’t seen, and won’t be identified with the big bad guys.

`           Our day will be spoken of as one which had virtually no dancing. There is a twisted counterfeit of dancing in Babylon, now let Israel learn to dance! Song and dance originally belonged to Israel, but Satan has corrupted it and offered it in Babylon. Zions forms of dancing are so rare they are all but extinct, and are only occasionally examined as remnants of ancient culture which no sophisticated person would take seriously.

What remains of wholesome dance in our society is a subgroup, hardly taken seriously, or seen as a legitimate pastime for young people. Any participation in it is rather considered an exploration of ancient arts as they are so foreign to our time. Truly our obsession with Babylonian dance is also an enactment of ancient arts, though we do seem to have taken it to a new level of depravity.

A sad sight is that of popular dance, wherein one hops around aimlessly without really knowing what they are doing. This is the status quo of social dance today. Why do we cater to club style dancing instead of teaching some legitimate dance, and host dances which call for such? We’re grooming children to become club hoppers by the type of song and dance we put on for them at our public schools and universities, and sadly even the churches. As my competitive ballroom dancing friend put it, “Learning to dance in partnership teaches more value than club dancing ever will.”

Dance costumes can be immodest in even good genres, so watch out for that. Look for not only uplifting dance forms, but uplifting costumes. When it comes to dance and technique, gripping one’s partner etc., there can be something of a need for different dress than is publicly common. I don’t have all the answers on this but here is an interesting read from a latter-day saint dancer on some reasons why dancers wear the costumes they do: https://www.ldsdaily.com/personal-lds-blog/modesty-heres-dancers-often-wear-less/

Don’t waste your time training as a priest or priestess of Babylon by learning their dance forms. Shame on the BYU Cougarette dance team for dabbling in these styles, notwithstanding their usually modest costumes. When you shake and gyrate in sexual patterns and all manner of boisterous rampages, it doesn’t matter what you’re wearing, it’s still inappropriate.

The dance forms which will live on into the millennium without sinking into oblivion are wholesome forms, which do not inappropriately provoke sexuality or violent behavior. They are also forms which involve some skill and real talent. What the prophets have said about music can also apply to dance: There is so much good that you don’t need to bother with the bad!  Many can’t find good dance because they are unwilling to find good music. Both are required like how spirit needs body. The music is the spirit, the body is the dance. Body and spirit constitute the eternal soul (ref). Do not sell your soul for popular music and dance!

“If thou art merry, praise the Lord with singing, with music, with dancing, and with a prayer of praise and thanksgiving.” (D&C 136:28)

“Dancing can be fun and can provide an opportunity to meet new people. However, it too can be misused. When dancing, avoid full body contact with your partner. Do not use positions or moves that are suggestive of sexual or violent behavior or are otherwise inappropriate. Attend only those dances where dress, grooming, lighting, lyrics, music, and entertainment contribute to a wholesome atmosphere where the Spirit may be present.” (For the Strength of Youth Manual, https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/for-the-strength-of-youth/music-and-dancing?lang=eng)

-…it must be admitted that the close embrace of the modern style of this whirling, giddy, seductive dance is not proper for the modest maiden, and it is not exactly the position in which a prudent wife should place herself” (Deseret News, 20 Sept. 1877)

-This is reportedly from William Clayton’s journal, from an article at this address https://bycommonconsent.com/2007/05/04/apologia-pro-saltando/ “The labors of the day having been brought to a close at so early an hour viz; half past 8, it was thought proper to have a little season of recreation, accordingly, Brother Hans Hanson was invited to produce his violin. He did so, and played several lively airs, among the rest some very good lively dancing tunes. This was too much for the gravity of Brother Joseph Young, who indulged in a hornpipe, and was soon joined by several others, and before the dance was over several French fours were indulged in. The first was opened by President B. Young with Sister Whitney and Elder H.C. Kimball with Sister Lewis. The spirit of dancing increased until the whole floor was covered with dancers. After this had continued about an hour, several excellent songs were sung, in which several of the brethren and sisters joined… After dancing a few figures, President Young called the attention of the whole company, and then gave them a message, of this import, viz; that this temple was a Holy place, and that when we dance, we danced unto the Lord, and that no person would be allowed to come on to this floor, and afterwards mingle with the wicked. He said the wicked had no right to dance, that dancing and music belonged to the Saints.

 

 

 

 

 

PART: MAGIC & FANTASY

Magic build in !!!!!!!!!!

 

Con

Strange highly stimulating media can be used as cheap babysitters, but the price is really high, as the attitudes learned can be a disturbance and tragedy forever.

This part for nonfiction some say it’s boring but BY says stick with it and it becomes a delight

pro

And tolkien’s prequel to Lord of the Rings called the cimorelli and the wizards are sent by God to help combat the forces of evil. That species actually has a different name wizard just means wise person and is a less specific classification of them.

Christopher Tolkien said the Peter Jackson films eviscerated the Lord of the Rings series turning them into action Blockbusters instead of what they were meant to be. This suggests that Tolkien never wanted them to be so gratuitously violent etc. Christopher refuses to sell the rights to the silmarillion because he doesn’t want them to do with it what they did with Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.

Some say fiction is trust in arm of flesh without foundation, but every man has conscience and is capable of coming up with a good story. Some can write great ones. But others write evil, and others yet write great evil. Surely a great writer of any genre will be grounded in the laws of God to be his moral compass in life, and those traits will endow his heroes, no matter which analogy is being used.

How different is it to watch a basketball game versus to watch a or read a fantasy novel the basketball game is not based in reality either yet it has made Mary the hearts of many prophets because it is Recreation.
If you say the basketball game is reality I ask when do you have life free of the cares of work and family duties where you can just go play all the time and become an athlete like that and when do you have semi-nude women lined up cheering for you all these things are fantasy. When does a person expect that what they do will be seeing all around the world yet so it is and this they make a reality into a fantasy and it is far from reality yet we tolerate it and find joy in it then why not the fantasy book. Perhaps in moderation they are both useful.
Several prophets have enjoyed the occasional basketball game (Monson, Kimball) or boxing match (J Fielding).

Con?

Complete commitment to the word of God requires a rejection of witches but are the witches and fantasy actually witches no they’re not they’re very different. I’m absolutely against people going around conjuring up spells cursing things by their spells blessing things by their spells and offering power through magic instead of through obedience to God. but what takes place in these books is different it’s not the same scenario at all it’s a different world it’s a different law it’s a different order. It’s a theoretical world of good versus evil. An hour world good and evil have been defined and we must stand with good and reject the evil and those who practice witchcraft in this world are in fact evil but in the theoretical world good versus evil they just tag on the title of which and say it can be good or evil and therefore the term which doesn’t even make sense in that context and the only reason it’s used is as a shortcut way of describing something with which we are vaguely familiar in this world but actually has nothing to do with it.  And the fantasy world which has not been defined as a bad thing there is no law so there is no punishment the only law in that world is whether someone uses power for good or power and magic for bad power and magic for good or power and magic for bad
And those worlds they are doing obedience to the god of good by using magic in a good way and they obey the god of the evil by using magic in the evil way.
It is analogy and plain terms which all heathen and religious alike can understand it is analogy written to the whole world in the analogy the good magic means priesthood and obedience to God.
Truth is the power of God lies are the power of Satan both are powerful.
Understand the good magic bad knowledge magic analogy and it’s correct form we need to understand that

 

 

Pro

Christ and Satan have similar beginnings and that what God creates Satan imitates we know Satan has knowledge of great sciences but he gives them prematurely or with slight twists in this way the good magic bad magic analogy holds water

con

Two kids grow up watching programs where a wizard comes in to save the day or a witch comes in to save the day or where Jesus comes in to save the day?

Is harry potter bad because it takes place in the real world?

irrelevant

Wide mouth and draw out the tongue – rolling stones band

On against doc write of who burned those books and last saw was portals…

Read dc and bfm on this

Mary Poppins and wizard of oz blur the line and change the word definition before witch meant power from devil they said there are good witches

Magic the gathering card game I feel is very dark. Immodest and very violent, and occultic themes. A dark environment and feeling to the entire thing. I don’t feel the same when it comes to Tolkien etc.

………

TIME, OBSESSION, AND NEGLECT OF WEIGHTIER MATTERS

Can we name fantasy novel series and characters but not the bible prophets or key theological works of the Reformation etc?

Even if fantasy isn’t inherently evil, an obsession of it to the point of neglecting

In florida they built a wizard world HP building and a the holy land experience close by the one was a gold mine the other went out of business

……….

Josiah got rid of the wizards the idols

Why look at the fake when we have the glorious truth?

Add the last Joseph r quote to the against it doc where he says that’s yep yep

Look up tolkien v hp etc

Look up why no beard

Look up more against potter etc see if conjures spirits etc. But lotr 3 calling on the dead to fight for them we have similar ideas in doing work for the dead

No skate because skate park and culture. No magic because HP world of wizards etc.

Shakespeare includes seances goblins demons switches

Public schools don’t allow the religion of the bible to be required reading but they do allow the religion of harry potter to be required reading

……..

HALLOWEEN

Anton LaVey head of the Church of Satan said he is glad that parents let their children worship Satan at least one night a year at Halloween

Galowween is socialism on steroids

Teachers can show how to dress like witches but not like pastors or proph we ts

All around the world cultures celebrate the Day of the Dead and that’s on the day probably when the ark of Noah set forth and everybody died so all these cultures have a day where they celebrate how or remember all their ancestors who died.

………..

EACH PERSON INVESTIGATES GOD DIFFERENTLY, SOME CALLED TO VARIOUS ART FORMS

We don’t crush those who get personal revelation like Joan of arc. Some can be inspired to minister in areas formerly unexplored. God can give new revelations. Some things though forbidden are not. Some ways of reading the Bible are not as peopleay have thought. What we are dealing with with fantasy may be an expression of God.

I think these preachers are off, I think the restoration expands minds to an extent thatany of these ideas are included

Meaning of the Word “Magic” (add to which witch is which doc)

Magic comes from the word mago which was a priest in the ancient Zoroastrian religion: a fascinating ancient monotheistic religion that has some shared history with Judaism. (The wise men who visited the Christ child were magos. As was Cyrus the great, whom the Lord calls “my servant” in the Old Testament.)
My understanding is that the ancient “magos” did not do what a modern day person would call magic. The word was appropriated over the centuries.

 

The Case for Fantasy: A Creative Teaching Tool

Let’s consider the pros and cons of reading fantasy. Each person must choose for themselves, my hope is that these essays will provide the arguments on both sides. Much of this relates to following the conscience which dictates the needs of each individual family, but perhaps some general guidelines can be suggested, and some things can be questioned as to their worthiness of our time altogether.

Note that I put these essays on fantasy in my book on recreation, rather than my book on education. These books are primarily for recreation. They do teach good lessons, but they are, like a game of basketball, simply good clean fun, and therefore, of some merit when kept in appropriate bounds. When a person is so into fantasy that they don’t learn about or live in reality, we have a serious problem.

 

Here is some remains from an old post as the other sections were missing

Fantasy can help us learn things which are difficult to understand in realistic settings.

Our nature as children of God is to create and be creative.

Joseph Smith taught that there are many animal forms, such as those mentioned in the book of Revelation, which do in reality exist on other worlds and in heaven, which do not exist on our world.

Science fiction is a similar genre, of futures which could perhaps exist.

Fantasy is a setting which could not in reality exist, but uses exciting scenarios and characters to teach us about ourselves and the circumstances we find ourselves in. The object of any writer is to connect with the reader, no matter how fantastic the characters.

Fantasy often involves witches and wizards. This is potentially dangerous as the bible speaks against them. However, many suggest that the magical world of the fantasy books is in an alternate universe and is very unrelated to what we know as witches and wizards here in this world, which the bible condemns.

——

 

Some have said that anything from ‘pagan’ cultures must be against Gods ways, including from the Greeks and Romans. It has been suggested however that the Hebrews knew the law of God, but later civilizations brought further understanding of the heart and mind of God. We do know that there have been various periods of apostacy and parts of the bible that have been scratched out by apostates. Yes we do not want to mingle our culture with things which are bad, but we also don’t want to keep out ideas which can contribute to our growth mentally emotionally and otherwise.

Some Hollywood movies do a bad job of portraying good books. I know some readers who intentionally avoid movies based on books as they tend to desecrate the book. Hollywood often takes the violence and immorality and cranks them up to a level not intended in the book itself to the point of gluttony & gratuitousness.

Some have experiences with fiction and it becomes a part of their character development. This can be for good or ill. We do not expect a lack of personality in heaven. We are allowed to be different in our interests, talents, and passions. Just because Brigham doesn’t like novels doesn’t mean others can’t have differing opinions. There may be room for both views if not taken to an extreme. One way isn’t necessarily higher than another, it could just pertain to personality & variety. If something is engaging to your personality, it may indeed be helpful for you, if not taken to an extreme. The role of a parent is to allow their children to explore good things within bounds the Lord has set, and to monitor the child from getting into any extremes and imbalances. If the child ‘does not know the Torah’, certainly he must be weened from the games or novels, etc., and learn to improve his character rather than idol away. Some use fiction to enhance their abilities. We are allowed to try things and see what works, the atonement keeps us safe, and keeps the door open for us to make course corrections as we go without being paralyzed by fear of making a mistake. It is hard (if not impossible) to make a judgement in these areas without having some experience with them. This doesn’t mean go smoke to see if its bad, it means there is room for debate here, and getting personal experience in the field helps you know where to take your personal stand.

CS Lewis & Tolkien have been quoted several times in General Conference. Some suggest that this means there is no real danger with reading these Christian fantasy authors. It is true however that they could be unaware of some implications of these works and just using them as a way to connect with what their audience is familiar with. God speaks to us in our own language, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a higher language to teach us in store.

Some say we have no time for reading fantasy since there’s so much reality we should be learning. I guess the time thing is that God doesn’t expect us to use every second of everyday pushing ourselves; some see this as a relaxing way to experience philosophical scenarios which indeed can uplift and encourage us.

Either way, it is doubtful that fantasy readers are going to hell. We are trying to find the noble and good things of the earth to partake of and not touch the unclean gift. May we discern wisely and not be pharisaical. This is likely not a matter of eternal consequence, and if it is not right, God will lead us away from it.

 

Some reason for the fantasy writing among the saints is the doctrine that we can become Gods, and that God has placed people on many worlds.

Brandon Sanderson, a latter-day saint author, has this to say about why he writes fiction, “all great fiction is a reflection of our lives and trying to say something about it or the people that we meet or the experience of being human. That’s what this is about. That’s why we write. And I do it through the form of really fun, action adventure fantasy novels. But at the end of the day, it’s still this art trying to reflect the world around me and say interesting things about it. The reason it’s there — I think the core concept as created by J.R.R. Tolkien, who was really the father of this medium — is to create a really immersive experience. … That’s how we achieve what we do in the stories is by looking at realism first, looking at a sense of immersion is what we call it. I often say that the difference between science fiction and fantasy is that science fiction tries to take what we have now and extrapolate plausible futures from it, whereas fantasy takes something completely impossible and tries to make it feel plausible while you’re reading the story. We both use this for the device of “we’re going to try to say something about the world.” … I don’t sit down and say, “what’s the moral of this story,” but I sit down and say “OK, what am I interested in right now, how is this a reflection of who I am?” This is all there for immersion.” (https://www.deseret.com/2017/11/10/20636072/q-a-brandon-sanderson-on-the-importance-of-fiction-and-how-writing-influences-his-lds-faith)

Fantasy can help us learn things which are difficult to understand in realistic settings. It does this by overly emphasizing certain elements of a story to make painfully clear the conclusions.

A related genre of Science Fiction is about exploring the unknown. Space is the final frontier. It is so unexplored that we postulate the possibility of there being many bazar things out there. Fantasy is somewhat similar to the exploration idea when we consider that there are powers in the universe which the human race by and large has not yet tapped into. Of course the prophets have called us toward that power, but we have seldom accepted it. Naturally not all concepts in fantasy are of divine potential but are rather silly instead.

Our nature as children of God is to create and be creative.

Joseph Smith taught that there are many animal forms, such as those mentioned in the book of Revelation, which do in reality exist on other worlds and in heaven, which do not exist on our world.

Science fiction is a similar genre, of futures which could perhaps exist.

Fantasy is a setting which could not in reality exist, but uses exciting scenarios and characters to teach us about ourselves and the circumstances we find ourselves in. The object of any writer is to connect with the reader, no matter how fantastic the characters.

Fantasy often involves witches and wizards. This is potentially dangerous as the bible speaks against them. However, many suggest that the magical world of the fantasy books is in an alternate universe and is very unrelated to what we know as witches and wizards here in this world, which the bible condemns.

Literature and culture studies can help us understand the fulfillment of scripture, people playing out examples of attempted heroism for the right, or villains acting for the wrong.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie warns that we should not be “truer than true”. As we make our choice, we can avoid extremes, and at least restrain from judging others.

God sometimes uses characters to teach us which we associate with being fallen. For example, Samuel the Lamanite Prophet, The Good Samaritan, the harlot who protects the prophets, and so on. Perhaps we can have open minds and consider lessons which can be taught from viewpoints that we have not previously considered. The bible is also sometimes violent and has other mature themes. Sometimes mature themes are useful when kept within the bounds the Lord has set.

 

 

Other resources in favor of fantasy:

 

“Magic of the Real: A Christian’s Perspective on the Fantasy Genre” on YouTube

https://youtu.be/KVkyWKQu5F0

 

“Why Christians Should Read the Pagan Classics | Dr. Louis Markos | Patrick Henry College” on YouTube

https://youtu.be/FhB5E4I07e8

 

“Christians and Fantasy Fiction (David Grubbs)” on YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oCTp4PXQIrA&feature=youtu.be

 

Book “Christ and Culture”. Looks at various perspectives.

 

 

Sort fantasy debate, Joe comms, etc:

 

“Containing != condoning.  I can think of many songs, etc, that describe and condemn bad, that feel bad about it and discourage it and etc–just as I can think of many scriptures that contain war and sin.  These are distinct from things that contain and also promote or entice towards bad.”

 

But do they herald wizards and witches as the heros?

 

Some say you must read each fictional/fantasy book in question before forming an opinion on it. Its true to an extent, but we can have opinions about certain genres as a whole, with awareness of what their general structures entail.

 

Some bad means guilty, and it should be therefore avoided.

 

I guess one incident is that Aslan in Narnia acts out a ritual which is extremely similar to a Wicken witchcraft ritual. Its a case of the good guys doing a bad thing, so to say. I don’t know that this qualifys as a thing which condemners sought out for the sake of condemning but it is of interest. There are others who point out that Tolkein copied middle earth ideas out of Pagan religion books. And the idea that these people are looking to wizards rather than god, and that the bible condemns wizards & witches. But you’re saying because it is make believe it’s different? You’ve heard it said ‘don’t play with bad things’, does writing about and reading about something, which, if it existed in reality, would be evil, make it qualify as playing with a bad thing? If there were real wizards with real power, wouldn’t reading books where they are featured as the heros make people want to turn to them, rather than the pesky prophets who want us to live by a strict moral code? Are we to an extent saying ‘don’t smoke, but here read this book about a guy who defeats the bad guys via smoking?’

 

 

Reword this quote, remove quotations: Someone pointed out that Tolkien’s ‘pagan’ resources aren’t demonic. He “used mythology, mostly Norse.  In crafting a deep, complicated world with a history and an origin, and a mythological nature.. he drew on mythology.  I have several thoughts with respect to this. I don’t think he was actually copying pagan anti-Christian rituals/moral beliefs–none of that human sacrifice and fertility festivals and idols and such that you hear people associating with paganism.  Those are the main.  The moral beliefs that are present in Tolkien’s works are basically those common to Christianity as well… present almost anywhere, in fact.  The part he “copied” was more of mythological history.  I would be beyond shocked if he was making an effort to subvert our minds by sneaking in that wicked old pagan stuff in disguise. That something is “from” another religion doesn’t make it bad.  Buddhism teaches to avoid detachment from worldly things–this is good.  If you see version of “don’t be worldly” that’s eastern-flavored, is it any less true?  While there are Buddist beliefs that are false, that’s not one of them.  Similarly, good abounds in all places.  Some of this is because we’re all humans, and have some idea of morality ingrained in us–so even totally man-made religions will independently state it.  Some of it is because there have been like a billion apostacies, and half of religions fell off, in some way or another, from something originally true.  I just wouldn’t condemn that quickly is all. These myths are so completely everywhere by now that not copying them is nearly impossible.”

 

 

 

> these people are looking to wizards rather than god

 

Who’s worshiping the wizards?  Not in the books I’ve read.  They’ve almost always depicted as just people. Often, there is a God or gods separate from them, much closer to our concept of things.

 

(wizards are the heros though, similar to worship?)

 

I have read other fiction that’s closer to what you’re worrying about–stuff that promotes a “humanist” (athiest) man-must-save-himself or man-and-science-are-superior-to-religion message.  Almost none of it has been in the fantasy genre.

 

 

 

 

> because it is make believe it’s different? […] if it existed in reality, [it] would be evil

 

It’s not so much ok because it’s fake, but because it’s different.  If the fake magic of fiction included all of the evil stuff that the soothsayers of earth are associated with, it would be just as bad.  And if all of the other stuff in that book were real along with the magic, I doubt that practicing magic would even be condemned by the bible in the first place.

 

In contrast to being a rebellion against the natural order, in most fantasy magic is depicted as natural; one does not rebel against God in using it.  In fantasy, it’s not just the act of magic that’s different–it’s the entire world around the magic that’s different.  It’s a question of “what if the world were like this and that?” — not of “what if I played with magic one day?”.  (often, fantasy points out how little the human and moral aspects of life change with the presence of magic (or whatever other insert made it “fantasy”–half of fantasy has no “magic” at all)).

 

If I can depict it a different way (you never know which perspective will “click”), “real life” magic is condemned because magic is fake.  “Practicing Magic” is longing for something which does not exist–hoping for power where none is to be had, turning from the true power (God) in seeking it.  The bad “magic” that is real looks nothing like the magic in books–it’s something else entirely disguised as magic and taking advantage of people’s resistance to accept the truth that there’s only one path to good–righteousness, and the fount thereof.  Er, that’s one way of looking at it, anyhow.

 

I guess, at the end of the day, you have to define “what is magic” before you can decide if it’s good or evil.

 

 

 

 

> the bible condemns wizards & witches […] You’ve heard it said ‘don’t play with bad things’

 

Yep.  Don’t do witchcraft.  And don’t follow a book which encourages or suggests that you to practice witchcraft in real life–or even which romanticises or suggests playing with it.  Avoid any real life witches and wizards–if you’d even recognize them looking for the sort of stuff that most fantasy books describe.

 

Reading about something with the same name but a different meaning entirely isn’t something I’d even call “playing with it”.  See previous section–the magic of books doesn’t much resemble the magic of hebrew tradition and biblical mention.  Good luck pulling off any of the evil stuff by saying “bippity boppity boo” like the fairy godmother from that work of fantasy Cinderella.

 

 

 

 

 

> If there were real wizards with real power, wouldn’t reading books where they are featured as the heros make people want to turn to them, rather than the pesky prophets who want us to live by a strict moral code?

 

THERE we go.  Yup yup, that would be bad.  That is (at least one of) the evil of wizardry.  Avoid books that encourage this.

 

Most books I’ve read, the wizards aren’t pitted against the forces of righteousness–and when they are, they loose.  When depicted as protagonists, they too learn the importance of a moral code and a disciplined life–they learn human lessons, and can rarely circumvent nature–whatever nature means in their world.

 

The turning away from God is a bigger problem than the magic itself, and is why seeking solutions via witchcraft is condemned even when said whichcraft is a lie and doesn’t do anything–which is overwhelmingly often the case.

 

 

 

 

>Are we to an extent saying ‘don’t smoke, but here read this book about a guy who defeats the bad guys via smoking?’

 

If the magic in the book were of a similar nature to smoking, then yes.  It rarely is, though.  It’s more like a book about a guy who defeats the bad guy via “smoking”–the I-just-made-it-up practice of throwing a ninja smokebomb to disorient someone so you can get away.  I think it’s reading too much into a word rather than the idea that word represents.  It’s also why it’s so hard to talk to some people–we’re hardly speaking the same language.

 

When we are speaking the same language, such a book as you described would sound ridiculous, and would probably serve to teach a good lesson on the foolishness of trying to smoke your way out of your problems, as a parody.

 

I’ve read some fantasy wherein magic existed, was depicted as evil (and, in that world, had things that made it qualify as evil), and was demonstrated to be bad, with the conclusion “it’s good we don’t have this; careful what you wish for” (the old legend of the “monkey’s paw”, for example?).  Couldn’t have gotten that wholesome lesson on contentedness without a little temporary suspension of disbelief.

 

If on the other hand, it’s actually encouraging some evil practice, then it’s bad.

 

Edit:

 

Jmr:
Star wars isn’t overly feminist not toxic
No violence needed
Moderation in stories, some female warrior ok
X-Men went overboard and they were obviously shooting for the homosexual agenda but the idea that we need to be taller into people different than ourselves is important

Playful creativity is the mother of useful invention

he says he can’t build God’s kingdom every minute but what about those of us who can or those of us who can do more remember president hiring said I can’t be a perfect servant every hour but I can do more than I thought I could

in fantasy you can exaggerate certain qualities of a character to see where that goes It’s like a character that you see drawn at a fair the exaggerate the nose etc some part of the and make everything else really small You can do this in fantasy and see where those character components take them You can do anything you want with the character You can custom design without the limits that we’re technically accustomed to in order to really drive home a point

you can’t keep flip-flopping eventually you’ve just got to make up your mind and go with what you go with

Ice cream like violence is not good for you if you’re already not eating any there’s no need for you to start eating some to have a balanced life you don’t need any of it to have a balanced life if you are having some every now and then you’re really going to be fine and it’s not going to ruin your soul

In the pagan classics we see ideas of the scriptures played out Homer’s return the return of adesius is a Messianic return he comes and sets things straight he goes a little overboard and doesn’t do a perfectly good job at it but he’s a type

First fantasy battle an old guy with a staff and beard doing magic vs another was Moses

 

We can learn from people who weren’t Christian as well people who go to museums theaters etc are people looking for transcendence Even if they don’t know about Christianity or the restored church sometimes people are growing up hearing bad things about this so much to where it’s psychologically impossible for them to accept the truth
That’s what qualifying the category of those kept from the truth because they know not where to find it And yes they might even be preached it but they can’t believe it because they’re psychology has been blasted and brainwashed therefore they know not where to find the truth
I regardless of the level of ignorance everyone has a conscience and can contribute to the studies and creations related to transcendence

We are living in a fantasy We are living on a planet full of giant fiery volcanoes and mega earthquakes and were surrounding in space were flying around thousands of miles an hour around a giant fireball which sustains us and keeps us alive We are born as tiny helpless infants and we morph into these wise adults There are many things about our nature and existence that are quite fantastic so I would blame the fantasy rider for big imaginative also

Goodness Holiness heroism not just thou shalt not. CS Lewis said his view of humanities role etc is creativity baptized when he read this fantasy book showing not only the restrictions but the possibilities

Tolkien says creativeness is the expression of godliness we are created in the image of God who is the creator

At delights and instructs said one early Christian writing in the defense of fiction

Fiction can very clearly taste the cost of good actions and the cost of bad actions and the results

the reading of these can be a sort of a Sabbath of the evening a break a rest a time to renew and refresh

even if the non-Christian writer occasionally speaks a lie in his book these are on the contour of truth and the inspired person can see through them and see the better message
Christ said to be harmless as doves wise
As serpents

The nature of some of the doctrines is simply fantastic floating city of Enoch etc
Rev creatures literal says JS
Move mountains

One could argue that resting and pondering and being creative and solving puzzles in the form of games DO build the kingdom, because they build us as a person, and we constitute the kingdom. We are the church.

I worry about being too restrictive and drawing a hard line.

Could some people have innate gifts and talents in these artistic fields? Perhaps some are called to hear things?

The lds seem to have an affinity for fantasy. Some say it’s due to typically modest costumes and clean language in the entertainment sector which is increasingly hard to find, but also to several doctrines including the doctrine that there is life on other planets, that there is real literal power to move mountains etc, that saran is real and has real literal power, that humans can become Gods and create worlds, etc.

Who are we to band storytelling mythology analogy symbolism creativity

 

People who read and write fantasy are inherently interested in Transcendence

 

 

 

Resources for additional studies in favor of fantasy reading:

 

There’s an interesting movie called Tolkien which talks about Tolkien’s life and what inspired his writing.

Here is an article about Orson Scott Card’s Enders Game being boycotted due to his views on traditional marriage. It also shows some of the Christian themes of the book. The Repression Of Ender’s Game (forbes.com)

This article supports fantasy reading Why Mormons Should Write Fantasy Novels | Alan Hurst (patheos.com) https://www.patheos.com/blogs/peculiarpeople/2012/08/why-mormons-should-write-fantasy-novels/

This interview with Orson Scott Card has some interesting points on religion and fantasy: https://www.writing-world.com/sf/card.shtml

 

 

 

The Case Against Fantasy: Desensitizing & Unproductive (make sections)

 

Here is the case against fantasy, which I find noteworthy at least, true at best:

 

Joseph Smith was known to be easily drawn to laughter, and frequently played with children and his brethren, playing sports and joking with them. He said we shouldn’t be too involved in the fantastic, but that a good sense of humor is of God. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

 

Avoid witchcraft in all its forms like the plague. Many are the scriptures in condemnation of such. Do not think that we can have these fantasies of alternate universe without God where the wizards rule the day. Such is not true, no, and never was nor will be, worlds without end. There are always Gods governing the cosmos. Not wizards and magicians! Such things are of fallen kingdoms, and are cast out, not given power and authority. The Lord is whom we should seek.

 

A friend pointed out, “Films can have a powerful influence on worldviews—how we see and understand reality. No medium, be it film, art, literature, or music, exists in a vacuum. In short, ideas have consequences.”

Perhaps we aren’t looking hard enough if we feel fantastic stories are needed to teach us life lessons. Hugh Nibley said we all have a full time job discovering the history of this world. Do we know more about fictional narratives and characters than about characters of the reformation, the bible, the restoration, the renaissance, the inventors, the various heroes of reality who really have overcome the world? Perhaps reality is a better teacher after all.

Several prophets have spoken against consumption of the fantastic, as it desensitizes a person to reality. Joseph Fielding Smith suggested that Christ would not try to teach us with far removed fantastic ideas. Joseph Smith said to not dabble too much in the fantastic. Some prophets have even said fiction in general is unworthy of our time.

God is creative, but he doesn’t create bazar things. He follows the standards of the universe & regular nature.

Some say, “without fantasy, what would we read/play?” this is an embarrassing statement, showing great ignorance. We live in a time of greatest availability of books etc., and this is no longer a good point, if it ever was.

It could be said that fantasy is to be used only sparingly, that it is like eating French fries. Is it healthy? For those who know anything about nutrition the answer is an obvious no. Is it fun? Of course. Is it worth it? Rewarding alternatives can be found, but if we are to use the ‘junk food’ of literature, it should be done only sparingly. (Naturally this is offensive to those committed to the genre, and yes I’m sure there are some meaningful points in those books)

Fantasy often involves witches and wizards. This is potentially dangerous as the bible speaks against them, despite of the possibility of them being unrelated to reality in their alternate universe.

Perhaps for those called to serve the Lord (which can be any of us), fantasy is not worthy of their time. Joseph Smith was chastised in the Doctrine and Covenants several times for becoming distracted or taking something too lightly. He was told that he would lose his gift and become like other men if he treated lightly the things of God (D&C 3:4-15).

Ephesians 5:11 Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them.

Someone suggested that we can’t say there’s good and bad magic, “White magic is described as “good” magic, as opposed to black magic, which draws upon the powers of evil beings. Opinions vary as to the differences between black and white magic, ranging from the idea that they are two names for exactly the same thing to the belief that they are completely different, especially in goals and intent. The Bible DOES NOT differentiate between “good” and “bad” magic. Magic is magic as far as the Bible is concerned. IT IS A COUNTERFEIT to the priesthood. Scripture doesn’t distinguish whether the magic is supposed to be used for good or for bad; it’s all forbidden because it appeals to a source of power other than God.”

Some suggest that we must use teaching tools which explicitly show Gods point of view, and that fantasy doesn’t do that, “Satan is so subtle and crafty, and that these books are truly a way to normalize and wrap witchcraft in an attractive package. Satan believes in “a fight of light over darkness.” He has just inverted light for darkness and darkness for light (Isaiah 2). As Christian families, we must look for books and movies that teach about the fight from God’s perspective, not from the twisted perspective of the adversary. You don’t learn about good and evil from Satan.” Others might suggest that they can in fact find God’s truths through lessons taught in fantasy settings.

 

Edit:

Fiction is Not something to be attacked

Not evil, just not wise

There’s a war we would more better he involved in than trifling books.

Give pros and cons and let them decide

As for me, I’ll avoid it.

I need not ban it but it may be useful in time of need. But my focus will be to gain articulate speech, to learn to master the debates of my time, to read my books and publish the gospel and all wisdom.

I must learn history, of reality, of the Reformation, of holy wars

 

Children remind us of the magic and wonder that is our reality our earth our life

The quote saying the mark of a truly learned man these days is to know which books not to read or a truly wise

do we know the stories of Star Wars or other fictional things better than we know the stories and characters of the Reformation of the restoration of the founding of this country of the great prophets of old of the Bible characters of the great inventors of the Great contributors in the enlightenment and Renaissance

BY: “Now is the time for labor. Let the fire of the covenant which you made in the house of the Lord, burn in your hearts like flame unquenchable.”

 

Have you listened to the heavenly Man or God’s Smuggler?  I should say that is how we build the Kingdom of God and is what is expected from us…not puzzle building and building ourselves first up… The world tells us to work on ourselves first…this is a pure lie….instead, we are to lay down our lives in the service of God, glorifying him, and that is how we are BUILT to then go build the kingdom.  We have been trained to not have a Christian worldview only humanized worldviews. Show me in scriptures where it says to focus on ourselves first. However, I do love puzzles but not as a tool in building the kingdom of God.

Also, I just have one ultimate question………… Who has the time?! Honestly, if you feel good about returning to God and reporting that the time HE gave you was spent in another reality. And that your reason was that you were trying to find Him and His symbolism instead of going to the source, well albeit

We are not on our own time. Every single second belongs to building up the Kingdom of God. Spending time in a world of fantasy or places or things that “could” exist seems like a tool of Satan used to DISTRACT us and TRAP us.

“A fanciful and flowery and heated imagination beware of; because the things of God are of deep import; and time and experience and careful and ponderous and solemn thoughts can only find them out. Thy mind, O man! if thou wilt lead a soul unto salvation, and search into and contemplate the darkest abyss, and the broad expanse of eternity–thou must commune with God. How much more dignified and noble are the thoughts of God, than the vain imaginations of the human heart! None but fools will trifle with the souls of men.”
— History of the Church volume 3
— Joseph Smith’s letter to the saints from Liberty Prison March 25th 1839

“If I spend a minute that is not in some way devoted to building up the Kingdom of God and promoting righteousness, I regret that minute, and wish it had been otherwise spent. This proves to me that the Spirit of the Lord is with me.” (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, vol. 12, pp. 217-221, May 17, 1868

 

 

 

Resources for additional study against fantasy:

https://ldsanswers.org/5-reasons-our-family-does-not…/
https://www1.cbn.com/…/harry-potter:-the-hero-for
https://christiananswers.net/q-eden/harrypotter.html
http://www.mcreveil.org/…/witchcraft/harry_potter_en.html
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r2aUXXeRfkc…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2uzTulaKLhg

On corruption in Disney: https://youtu.be/tH0fBWwpP6A and https://youtu.be/s3tSzM5iU4g

some comments to sift:

 

Some questions to ask: Does the spirit reside while the media is being consumed? Would you invite the Prophet to join you? Does it fill an important need? Does it keep us from developing our talents? Does it overly isolate us from others? Does the consumer grow in some way or is it a completely stagnant activity?

Having some good doesn’t justify bad. For example, in a court of law, a person who commits a crime is guilty regardless of how clean his background is otherwise. We should seek that which is clean, not tainted. There is mercy, and we must be wise and explore, but we can find guidelines to help us in this search which will keep us safe and help us open up more than we knew possible without becoming damned in the process. May we do our best in our individual journeys to find the best resources for education and recreation.

Recreation suggests creating again, or restoring to a state of wholeness. Whether this means the resource must teach you something, or that it is just fun, is a spectrum for each person to decide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is Elder Bednar with warnings about cyberspace and avatars, been a while since I read it but might be related somewhat: https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/2010/06/things-as-they-really-are?lang=eng

Here is a thing where the guy talks about Aslan doing a wiken ritual (not the snow witch)

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=o9PvKxbtjWQ

another on lewis:

https://youtu.be/MpmlKpm3tOs

This is on tolkein. The guy is sketch but perhaps has a few good points

https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fyoutu.be%2FZFb-wh1yS9M%3Ffbclid%3DIwAR3xCbods1XpJDSjlNWqlraQT0OYwfRaDT_EGptChLzVgaXO7maP7A3Xvus&h=AT067nT4f7mBF8qinK_vo_bYatVvQhAJEYLxAVK-xcsEi_0QUMZa0O3YHumU7JcvjB89GCKdINYchS1EJBl2zJeaJ4B4UKD3lcFd9E1zFDdVXFyURfS4QHxe0hIBdNtDUOOL0g

Book: Apostate: The Men Who Destroyed the Christian West ; about dark side of Twain etc.

by Kevin Swanson | May 1, 2013

https://www.amazon.com/Apostate-Men-Destroyed-Christian-West/dp/0985365153/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1S4FCHDEMTHB6&keywords=apostate+the+men+who+destroyed+the+christian+west&qid=1581560473&sprefix=apostates+the+men+%2Caps%2C230&sr=8-1

 

See the Bednar apostolic warning Avatar article

one said:
I watched television and movies for years, and then I decided to give them up close to a decade ago so I could spread the gospel online.  Since that time, I have gained a rather unique perspective of things, having seen both sides. And I don’t think you can gain the knowledge I have gained until you are willing to give up television and movies for at least a year.  Voluntarily, not forced like when you were on your mission.  I’ve learned a lot about the music and movie industry, and what they champion.  Just one example, ever notice that in all the kids shows you see, the plot most of the time seems to be the kids disobey their parents, and instead of getting hurt or in trouble, they save the day through “magic.”  And a lot of other kids shows on television the kids make fun of their parents.  That’s just one example of many.  And since I have been away from movies and television, I’m more sensitive to spiritual things. I have tried to sit down and watch television with my family now, and I can’t do it for long, because it is an empty pursuit.
It plays on the emotions, but doesn’t nourish the soul, unless you are watching gospel oriented movies where the spirit can be there. And I’m more engaged with real life than I was. I’m not locked in a fantasy world.  I’m less reactive emotionally, and have more control of my emotions.  And I have more time for playing and having fun with my family, or to do family history, or go to the temple, or read the scriptures, or any number of things that are much better to do with our time.  I’m not perfect, but I feel a closeness with our Savior that is undeniable. Now I don’t really find a problem with watching an occasional fairy movie with my daughter, maybe once every 6 months, but the longer I go without watching it, the more I’m convinced that it’s one way for the adversary to use to distract people from doing things that are better or best.

From Connolly again:
we did the same.  my kids thought I had lost my mind.  we deleted over 80% of our music and more than that in our movies.  but remember that you need to replace it with good music and movies.  and teaching our children WHY we were doing this was so important.  our children are older so this was a bit harder as it was so ingrained in them. they still aren’t fully on board but l can see little by little the Lord is working on them.  for me it has been such a blessing and the spirit in our home is soooo much more than it ever has been.

From Stoddards: all movies cater to a religion. To one or the other.

I say: How can there be such differing opinions among saints? Please describe the kingdom of God, are there factions ot are some not going to make it? Rude awakening or peaceful separation? The deciding what works for you doesn’t seem congruent with a house of order, and Gods kingdom is a house of order. If it’s ok for anyone, it should be okay for everyone. If it’s not ok for someone, it should be not ok for everyone, as God is no respector of persons. We believe everyone needs to eventually be baptized in this church to live in the celestial kingdom, it’s a universal standard. I can’t comprehend two seperate standards existing in 1 kingdom. (its ultimatly ok for everyone or ok for no one; God is merciful to the ignorant, but eventually will teach us and expect us to rise to his level)

 

 

Last note from a person, somewhat related:

I love watching my daughter raise her 3 children. They are addicted to the Book of Mormon and KNOW those stories ( ages 3, 2, 1). They also can’t get enough of the bible stories. These are children who only know these types of heroes and I am watching what it looks like to have no Disney, Hollywood or others in their lives, but pure religion shown to emulate. I never have seen anything like it, and I owned a school for 10 years of ages 4-18. I will share with you, what was taught to me about who are children should be learning from when it comes to literature, which the principles can be applied to this question too.

The world uses Aristotle, Freud, Aquinas, Descartes (Father of skepticism in a sense), Ralph Waldo Emerson, David Hume, Martin Luther King Jr., Machiavelli, Thoreau, Plato, Nietzsche, Mark Twain and so forth to teach from. These men were evil and pernicious, but yet we hold them up as the very best. If Joseph said…Drinking from Spring water is best, then we need to take a look at our shelves and redefine what is meant as best.

What is our standard for a “classic”? [or movie] Truly, the very greatest classics are completely missing from the list, ENTIRELY. Where are the great works of the Reformers? Where is Martin Luther’s speech before the Diet of Worms? Where is Oliver Cromwell’s speeches before Parliament? We have hundreds of homeschooled youth (and adults) who can quote Plato in an instant but return a blank stare if you ask them anything about the Scottish Covenanters, the English Reformers, the Huguenots and so forth. For those who are LDS, why are we not reading Brigham Young’s discourses, Joseph Smith’s writings, Lectures on Faith, History of the Church?

Where is the National Covenant and Declaration of Arbroath, documents authored by Scottish Christian freedom fighters? We now know that these documents were likely directly copied into the Declaration of Independence and the Preamble and yet no one has ever heard of them!! Where are the journals, founding documents and published books authored by the Puritan forefathers? Where are the biographies and writings of the Early Christians? If we want to be Israel, we should study the works by Israel throughout time. The Reformation and everything dealing with the Latter-day Signs of the Times.

Now I am not saying there is not a time and a place for studying evil. You have to teach the light AND the darkness to help youth understand why the Gospel is relevant to the real world. BUT, if you are going to study Freud, Descartes, Emerson, Mark Twain, etc. make sure you know why they are FALSE. If you are studying them for light and truth you will be in serious trouble. I have seen youth studying these “classics” and they were studying them for truth. This is just one of the areas we are being compromised by the enemy right now. If we are going to study the anti-Christs we should study why they are wrong and not hold them up as “great works”.

When it comes to true classics, every student should be thoroughly familiar with the Reformation. A classical list has Thomas More but where is William Tyndale? Many do not know but William Tyndale and Thomas More debated religious freedom, political principles and the importance of scripture in the tongue of the people. They were completely opposed. So why are we studying the anti-heroes and NOT the heroes?

St. Bartholomew’s Eve, a historical fiction novel written by G. A. Henty, is a true classic. It’s standard of literature and the lessons it teaches blows away the majority of the classics for young people. It saddens me that the truly great literature has been forgotten and replaced by books filled with feminism and other modern philosophies and attitudes.  If we are Israel, then we should be reading and learning about Israel and its people!

 

Letter I sent to Joel Skousen:

Subject: magic, fantasy, fairy tales, video games: Teaching tools or evils?

Message: Brother Skousen, For context, I like you am LDS. What do you think about magic & fantasy? The main issue seems to be that its a waist of time, but in some ways it could be constructive recreation. Some say it can be a teaching tool (noble lessons of Lord of the Rings etc.). They say we should be creative using imagination to create these alternative worlds, similar to how God is creative. They claim some lessons are more easily taught with fiction than non-fiction. They say just because sometime contains magic doesn’t mean they condone it. They say fantasy wizards often don’t replace God, they just find special resources. They say wizard magic in the fake world is like priesthood power in the real world. Is dualism, a dark side and light side of the same power, a false evil idea? What of Harry Potter & Star Wars? They say just because CS Lewis etc. maybe used Pagan histories to create them, doesn’t mean its bad, since its hard to make anything without drawing upon the extensive folk lore histories. Others say it is all evil based on biblical passages condemning witchcraft/wizards. Some say we should not read fairy tales to our kids as they use magic rather than God as the power source to save the day. Others say fairy tales expand imagination creativity and problem solving skills. Some say Satanic worship is far removed from magic used in fantasy books making it ok. We have discovered that most Disney movies are corrupt (the attitudes, the sexuality, the witchcraft, etc.) On a similar subject, I have discovered that Yoga is hidden Hindu worship, and calls on demonic spirits, and calls for emptying the mind instead of filling it, letting go of control which you have warned of. Last question: should video games be allowed to teach children problem solving, puzzle solving, exploration, & strategy? If not, what alternative resources should be used? Some say these won’t be used in the Millennium so why not use them now, but if they aren’t evil, perhaps they will be used in the Millennium?

His reply was that he avoids all of this stuff as it is questionable and possibly dangerous.

 

Some say the citing of several Christian fantasy writers in General Conference is a stamp of approval on those works. However, it is true however that these speakers could be unaware of some spiritually dangerous implications of these works, and are just using them as a way to connect with what their audience is familiar with. God speaks to us in our own language and meets us where we are, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a higher language to teach us in store.

 

One argues that we don’t have time for fiction, fantasy, Greek ways, etc., “My argument is WHO HAS TIME? and depends on what you are looking for and how you are setting up your home and family.  As I have said before… I think the key that comes up with any topic is realizing that we are dealing with higher and lower laws. What are the Telestial principles, the Terrestrial principles and the Celestial principles when it comes to what should be reading, watching, listening to, etc.? If we are striving to live and follow Celestial laws and principles then we seek those things. If it will not be in Zion…why are we touching it?  If one really wants to know the answer to what they should be reading- we must seek what the prophets have said. I can’t think of another louder than these statements made by Brigham Young. https://josephsmithfoundation.org/what-counsel-has-been-given-concerning-novels/.    Do Hebrew and a Greek education have something to offer? Again…depends on what you are looking for and the principles you will apply. Because we have imbibed the pagan alternative to God’s education, we see it is okay…but in his education, no, mythology is not mixed. Now I am not saying there is not a time and a place for studying mythology. You have to teach the light AND the darkness to help youth understand why the Gospel is relevant to the real world. BUT, if you are going to study them for light and truth you will be in serious trouble. I have seen youth studying these books and they were studying them for truth. This is just one of the areas we are being compromised by the enemy right now. If we are going to study pagan rooted material we should study why they are wrong and not hold them up as “great works”. I believe like Brigham that every student should be thoroughly familiar with good works and not waste their time with junk. He says to “avoid works of fiction; they engender mental carelessness and give a slipshod character to the workings of the mind. To strengthen the mind, increase its perceptions, develop its powers, we should read the true and the wise.” We, however, should be reading about the National Covenant and Declaration of Arbroath, documents authored by Scottish Christian freedom fighters? We now know that these documents were likely directly copied into the Declaration of Independence and the Preamble and yet no one has ever heard of them!! Where are the journals, founding documents, and published books authored by the Puritan forefathers? Where are the biographies and writings of the Early Christians? For those who are LDS, why are we not reading Brigham Young’s discourses, Joseph Smith’s writings, Lectures on Faith, History of the Church? If we do not want to lose our children to food, fun and fantasy that they are being converted to, is not mythology part of it?  If we want to be Israel, we should study the works by Israel throughout time.  The Reformation and everything dealing with the Latter-day Signs of the Times. You know how many adults do not even know about the 7 volumes of church history that Joseph Smith wrote himself. Why are we immersed in all these great works, but dabble everywhere that is untrue and wise?”

As Hugh Nibley said, each of us have a full-time job discovering the history of this world.

 

Perhaps if time is the only issue with fantasy, one ought to find out a few of the best classics in that genre, enjoy them, then move on to other pursuits. But then again, perhaps this would create a fixation with the fantastic, and lead to overindulgence and insensitivity to reality.

 

Perhaps a curse of disappointment and gloom flees when we reject fantasy magic and things beyond this world, and we are restored to a joy in what the Lord has appointed for us. The joy we were meant to have returns, the joy of true life. The wonder of a stream or the glory of a tree blowing in the wind. The wonder of a child learning a new word. The life God has given. Nature. Useful invention, etc. Perhaps this is part of what the hymn calls for when it says ‘wake up and do something more than dream of your mansion above.’

 

We must prepare for the final judgment where Christ will discern whether we have used it lives promoting the betterment of mankind, it just daydreaming.

 

C.S. Lewis and Tolkien were really good buddies, and both had an obsession with paganism.

 

Tolkien And Lewis were initiated in the H.O.G.D. (The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn), which is a deeply occult, black magic secret society.  This may have influenced their writings.

Here is an article about the spirituality of Tolkien, and connections to the hippy LDS neo-pagan western magic etc. https://sacredsandwich.com/2017/10/26/the-sad-truth-of-tolkien-spirituality/

 

William Dunbar in the Journal of Discourses said, “No young man would think of reading Robinson Crusoe in order to make himself acquainted with geography, neither would he read the history of Scotland in order to master algebra; and no young man or young woman would think of studying any branch of science or art by reading novels. But if they really desired to acquire any branch of knowledge they would, of course, procure works that treated on that subject, and make it a matter of earnest study. I knew a man who did nothing but study grammar from the time he was fifteen years old until he was twenty-five. They used to call him “Old Syntax” for a byname. So it is with our young—they must not expect to study “Mormonism” by reading novels, but they must read the Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Millennial Star, Orson Pratt’s Works, the Voice of Warning and many others. These are the works our children must study if they ever find out for themselves the truth of the principles of “Mormonism.” And besides doing this, they must also pray unto the Almighty for the testimony of his Holy Spirit. How did we, now growing old in the work, get a knowledge of its truth? Many of us, after hearing the testimony of the servants of God, went into our closets, and some of us labored for months with the Almighty before we obtained that knowledge. We prayed “Lord, if the testimony of this man is true, make it known unto us, by some means or another;” and we finally received impressions which induced us to repent and be baptized, and we had hands laid upon us for the gift of the Holy Ghost; and still we labored, and prayed, and contended for the faith once delivered to the Saints, until God in his mercy manifested himself unto us in such a manner that we knew this was his work and kingdom.” (JD 17:15, William C. Dunbar, Remarks to the Young. https://scriptures.byu.edu/#:t29813$21a:i6662)

 

John Taylor said of Heber C. Kimball at his funeral, “ Brother Kimball was a man who was the son of nature. The literature he loved was the word of God. He was not a man to read novels. He studied the revelations of Jesus. His heart was filled with benevolence. His soul was filled with love; and he was always ready to give counsel to the weakest child that came in his way.” (https://scriptures.byu.edu/#:t1d4e7$183a:i6662 The Death of President Heber C. Kimball.

Discourses by Elder John Taylor and others, delivered in the New Tabernacle, Salt Lake City June 24, 1868.

Reported By: Unknown. JD 12:179)

 

See words of early brethren on the this in the journal of discourses. Go to scriptures.byu.edu, then look at the topical journal of discourses, and look at the entry ‘novels’. Many there are recorded as being against the reading of fiction.

Someone who went away from fiction speaks of blessings from it, “Once I got over the shock from the Spirit and realized the Lord was trying to teach me a principle  and knowing that I was stuck in a class I paid for I decided to read their works from a perspective of how they displeased God instead of treating their writings automatically as “classics”.
The Spirit was able to teach me and revealed to me an agenda in their writings. I will forever be grateful for that experience as it helped me at a young age purge these things from my life before they were able to have an impact on my thinking or shape my world view.”

Shakespeare was appalled by the Puritans. His use of God’s name is his plays disturbed them greatly, the language he used introduced dangerous gender confusion into the minds of men. They even secured a piece of legislation in Parliament known as the Act of 1606- which made these things an offense and had his plays removed from these things.

 

Here are some highlights of the prophets from a Joseph Smith Foundation article, which caution against fiction. Here’s the full quotes online for those further interested:  https://josephsmithfoundation.org/what-counsel-has-been-given-concerning-novels/. I will list the quotes referenced there below after a brief summary of them.

BY says don’t go to theatre in the evening
(yet he calls for study of painting and he built a theatre; this quote must have meant don’t do so excessively)
BY calls for only studying that which is useful, not lounging reading novels
JF.Smith speaks against reading weird strange fantastic novels, and against prolonged imagination and wonderment
JFieldingS says Christ wouldn’t present us with fantasy books so removed from reality
GQCannon rebukes fantasy as being overly extreme which makes reality full to people, with unrealistic heroes etc. He says there’s enough fascinating truth and knowledge to occupy us without messing with false stuff!
BY says get rid of Dickens. Says develop a taste for studying scripture, science, and manufacturing, and that when you commence it will grow on you.
BY calls for sword fencing and art of war and study of law. He says study of architecture worthy of every student
BY says to study only that which is useful.

 

Here is a lecture against magic, taking a literal approach: Bible Verses about Magic by Bible Reasons http://biblereasons.com/witchcraft/?fbclid=IwAR0H04LKl31boQ-aWQEKYV1K6sX8YyUrNvx5X0mfL4SFLd1oqmLBmIIh2E4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Favor of Reading Fiction if it is Realistic

 

 

Brigham Young said, “Now understand it—when parents whip their children for reading novels, and never let them go to the theater, or to any place of recreation and amusement, but bind them to the moral law, until duty becomes loathsome to them; when they are freed by age from the rigorous training of their parents, they are more fit for companions to devils, than to be the children of such religious parents. . . When I was young, I was kept within very strict bounds, and was not allowed to walk more than half-an-hour on Sunday for exercise. The proper and necessary gambols of youth having been denied me, makes me want active exercise and amusement now. I had not a chance to dance when I was young, and never heard the enchanting tones of the violin, until I was eleven years of age; and then I thought I was on the highway to hell, if I suffered myself to linger and listen to it. I shall not subject my little children to such a course of unnatural training, but they shall go to the dance, study music, read novels, and do anything else that will tend to expand their frames, add fire to their spirits, improve their minds, and make them feel free and untrammeled in body and mind. Let everything come in its season, place everything in the place designed for it, and do everything in its right time.” (Brigham Young, “Organization and Development of Man,” Journal of Discourses, vol. 2, (Liverpool: F. D. Richards, 1855), 90-96; Discourse was given on February 6, 1853.)

Elsewhere in the sermons of Brigham, he didn’t seem to like the reading of fiction as it was a waste of time when we could be doing otherwise prudent things. Are we in a generation so prosperous that we actually have time for these things? I don’t know.

Fiction talks about things which are hard to understand. Folk tales from the beginning have done this.

There is a difference between fantasy and science fiction. Fantasy has more witchcraft. Science fiction deals mostly with advancements in technology. However, Orson Scott Card says the only real difference between these two genres is that one has a forest theme on the front cover, the other has a space theme on the front cover.

BY does call for cultivating the mind, don’t some classic novels cultivate the mind, like Faust, which teaches the folley of a deal with the devil? Or jekyll and hyde which teaches to avoid substance abuse? Or dorian grey which teaches to not be narsisistic etc?

I do prefer nonfiction and to learn of reality and useful things, but always thought great classic fiction books were of high regard and to be used sparingly and that a life void of them was living beneath it’s privileges and wasn’t deep as it ought be?

Some in the group have said novels like little women and Jane austen are good
..

Some prophets like Brigham Young, Joseph F Smith, Joseph Fielding Smith, and George Q Cannon have spoken against reading fiction. But has this sentiment of zero fiction been echoed?  I think Elder Holland recently said a list of some of his favorites as he studied English in college. David O McKay also was an English major and memorized poetry from Shakespeare and many others. What remains however is that none of them seem to be in favor of fantasy novels which are far removed from realistic scenarios. However, if there is a good book of fantasy, it would belong to Zion, as Brigham said all good things belong to Zion.

Pres David O McKay read tons of classic fiction, he woke early to review books from 4-6am, he would quote thousands of them.

There are times when prophets and apostles speak from their own opinions and the cultural opinions of the times. Not everything they say is inspired. There is a lot of value in a variety of literature  Follow the Spirit.

I am not one that likes to read “girl” books and always thought Jane Austin was going to be just that…but knowing she was an Eminent author, piqued my interest in learning more. (I love reading from pure fountains only…I don’t like wasting my time elsewhere). She is now a favorite of ours and worthy of a place on my bookshelf and heart. My grandchildren are in love with her, as we now have a rooster named Mr. Darcy, and a rabbit named Bingley and Emma.  Her writings have taught us much about refinement, courting, patriarchs, roles of servants, true love, and sacrifice.  They are keepers! 🙂

It’s not sci-fi thatade us think of invention it’s the other way around. We don’t need sci-fi to inspire invention.  It could be said that yesterday’s fiction is today’s reality, and we do invent etc, but we don’t need trivial novels about it.

There are many fictional books (science fiction, fantasy, or otherwise) that inspire the reader to do good. I think it would be unwise to draw any sort of line that would prevent someone from benefiting from these books.

You can glean a lot about human nature from all sorts of media. It doesn’t necessarily have to be “uplifting” to be beneficial. I’ve learned a lot of eternal principles from dark, depressing literature (just read the Russian authors). If it improves you somehow or teaches you something you need to learn, then it’s a classic and well worth reading

 

 

Hannah Stoddard’s counsel and suggestions on Fiction

Though very cautious of fiction, and trying to stay true to reality with fiction, here are some principles about fiction suggested by Hannah Stoddard from the Joseph Smith Foundation:

“I personally do not agree with saying all fiction (as a genre) is bad and I don’t think Brigham Young meant this either. Jesus Christ himself told fictional stories that taught doctrine. Many of the men and women whose work was performed by Wilford Woodruff in the St. George temple were authors, playwrights and poets (including Washington Irving, William Makepeace Thackery, Sir Walter Scott, Charlotte Bronte and Jane Austen). The quotes from the early brethren have to be kept in context. What “fiction” are they talking about and who are they talking to? A son who needs to take a break for a while because he has overindulged? Or everyone in general? Are they referring to all fiction? Or in context are they referring to fiction of the day that was leading men and women astray (similar to how I may say in a conversation, ‘Disney movies are bad and have agendas’ but there is a disney produced movie “Night Crossing” that we have on ZionTube. 😉 Am I contradicting myself? Or is my point and definition of ‘disney movies’ being overlooked?)? Most importantly, step back and think, what is their POINT? What are they trying to say? What does this matter? I think they would be the first to urge this. Brigham Young built theaters and was quite the actor himself, along with Helen Mar Kimball in Nauvoo. I think what the true discussion should be is over principles. Is most literature produced in the fiction genre bad? Yes, the same as most movies produced are bad. This does not mean the medium is evil, only that it is being used for evil like the Internet, etc. It’s a medium that needs to be taken BACK for the glory of God. I think appreciating good literature is a skill and attribute of character that is essential and must be developed. You can learn lessons about human nature, the consequences of sin and righteousness, compassion, honor, nobility, etc. better from literature than almost any other medium.

* Does the book accurately present God’s worldview, natural laws, etc.? Does it accurately portray real life? A book where the main character commits adultery, but is at the same time an honest hero IS NOT an accurate portrayal of real life. That breaks God’s natural laws. A book where the main character has superhero powers also is NOT an accurate portrayal of life. I believe this is one of the reasons why the early brethren warned against those types of books. At the same time, a good fictional book portrays real life scenarios such as Sense and Sensibility or Ivanhoe. These stories could have happened in real life and we see consequences for sin, we see that the heros and heroes are moral (and that’s why they are exemplary). Little Lord Fauntleroy is fictional, but the story is a powerful realistic portrayal of true nobleness and “noblesse oblige.”

* What GOOD is the book giving you? And I’m not talking about good ethics and warm fuzzies but real, true doctrine? When you read it do you feel humbled before God? Do you feel a desire to change from your natural man and be born again? If not, then the spirit of God is not present. Does the book lead you to repent?

* The same standards you use when picking apart movies could be used for fiction as well. https://josephsmithfoundation.org/blog/our-philosophy-on-movies

Fiction can be a POWERFUL tool (said from someone who has aspired to write some novels and hopes to one day in the future). Fictional stories that followed true principles have changed my life for the better. This is a tool that can be used for good or for ill.”

And she suggests the following fictional works:

Jane Austen works
– Mansfield Park
– Sense and Sensibility
– Pride and Prejudice
– Emma
– Northanger Abbey
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
Ishmael (E.D.E.N. Southworth) with sequel, Self-Raised
The Masked Bridal (Mrs. Georgie Sheldon)
In Freedom’s Cause (G. A. Henty)
St. Bartholomew’s Eve (G. A. Henty)
A Little Princess, Frances Hodgson Burnett
Swiss Family Robinson
North and South (Elizabeth Gaskell)
Old-Fashioned Girl (Louisa May Alcott)
Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
Little Men (Louisa May Alcott)
In His Steps (Charles Sheldon)
Elsie Dinsmore (12-book series)
Pearl Maiden (H. Rider Haggard)
The Girl of the Limberlost (Gene Stratton-Porter)
The Coral Island (R M. Ballantyne)
Lysbeth (H. Rider Haggard)
Other works by G.A. Henty
– Beric the Briton
– The Cat of Bubastes
– In the Reign of Terror
– By Pyke and Dyke

 

 

 

 

 

PART: UNSORTED SPORT DANCE HEALTH

Dance Forms

(I’ve deliberately excluded various corrupt dance forms. The following have the potential to be wholesome.)

 

African traditional

Albanian

Arabic (see also Turkish, Lebanese) (beware these forms, fraught with unwholesome belly dancing; there may be something good there, but it is often infiltrated with inherently suggestive dancing)

Ballet (France)

Ballroom Classical

Indian (South Asian) Traditional

Indian (South Asian) Modern (Bollywood) (this is often corrupt)

Brazilian fight dance (Capoiera)

Breakdance (beware the bad music that often accompanies this)

Bulgarian

Chinese Classical

Clogging (see also Irish Step and Tap)

Cossak (Russia)

Flamenco (Spanish) (see also tap, Irish step, clogg)

Folk (Deutschland)

Foxtrot (Ballroom variant; fast version called Quickstep)

Gavotte (Renaissance, Baroque, Gallantries)

Gregorian

Highland (Scotland)

Hungarian

Irish

Irish Step (see also clogging flamenco and tap)

Israeli

Italian

Jive (see also swing)

Kurdistan

Quickstep (fast Foxtrot)

Mazurka (Poland)

Swing, Eastern, Western, Country / Country Line (USA)

Tap (see also clogging, Irish Step, flamenco)

Tarantella (Italy)

Turkish (see also Lebanese, Arabic)

Ukrainian

Waltz & Viennese Waltz

Musical Instruments: A Fun (Working) Approach

 

-Playing an instrument can be fun, that’s why we want to learn and teach it, more so than for everyone to be on a professional orchestra. Granted reading sheet music is fun too, but perhaps not a great place to start. Perhaps learning ‘tabs’ to learn new songs is a great foundation before moving on to sight reading sheet music, so the artist gets a feel for the potential and joy of playing songs on the instrument. Granted this approach may work better for some instruments than others. Many great musicians didn’t know how to sight read. Many folk musicians learned by tradition and family playing around together more so than learning sight reading. The training in sight reading is often void of musicality, rhythm, or predictability.

Here is a great video on how learning music should be fun, rather than obsessed with teaching sight reading “Rant: music lessons should be FUN” by Lindybeige https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8iMOmYcZ2KY

A key part of learning instruments is learning to enjoy hearing that instrument. Therefore, some of what I’ll present with each  instrument will be videos of delightful performances thereby.

Key fingering charts, chord charts, etc., are easily found in PDF format on the web or in inexpensive beginner instrument books. There are however great video and otherwise tutorials on the web for learning instruments.

Someone said “We learn to read and write after we’ve mastered speech. But the standard of terrible music instruction is to learn an entirely new and unintuitive writing system before we have any real idea what it means.”

Surely a desire toward any instrument will involve both hearing it played well and toying with it in a casual setting for quite some time before much reading and drilling takes place. After the formal trainings begin, much time still is required for freestyle playing, “scrimmaging” if you will, and an at least partially self-elected book of songs to learn, in addition to classical arrangements.

 

Don’t make entertainment your top priority

“In a materialistic age, when recreation and convenience are the suggested priorities of our society, we might all well ask ourselves, ‘How well are we providing for the spiritual well-being and strengthening of our families? …Are we clothing family members with ‘garments of salvation’ as anxiously as we provide clothing for their wardrobe? Is our diet of entertainment and recreation balanced with the food offered by Him who said, ‘Come unto me and ye shall partake of the fruit of the tree of life; yea, ye shall eat and drink of the bread and the waters of life freely’ (Alma 5:34).” (Elder Ballard in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

Make your entertainment high quality culture: “Too often we use many hours for fun and pleasure, clothed in the euphemism ‘I’m recharging my batteries.’ Those hours could be spent reading and studying to gain knowledge, skills, and culture.” (President Henry B Eyring in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

“Parents should act to preserve time for family prayer, family scripture study, family home evening, and the other precious togetherness and individual one-on-one time that binds a family together and fixes children’s values on things of eternal worth…Parents should teach gospel priorities through what they do with their children.” (Elder Oaks in “Today’s Family: Chose Wholesome Recreation” at https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/prophets-and-apostles/unto-all-the-world/choose-wholesome-recreation?lang=eng)

Elder Bruce R McConkie’s family was not a recreation-based family. He didn’t play sports with his children, didn’t go to sporting events, didn’t teach them sports because he didn’t know them himself. He did do some running and hiking, but time together in the McConkie family

Sport Philosophy

 

(Note: This is sport philosophy, not sport psychology. It is about the morality of sports, not about how to motivate people to do well in sports.)

“You must excuse me, but when I’m with the boys I make all the fun I can.” -Joseph Smith (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

Physical sports involve not only the strength of the body, but the strategy of the mind. They can be called physical chess, and are arguably one of the greatest ways to learn grow and recreate. Some have said that sports build character – I’m not sure about that, since many professional athletes are senseless immoral brutes. However it could well be said that sports REVEAL character. And for those who are seeking to build good character, I’m sure sports can help them do that. We don’t give a clean stamp of approval on “sports” or “business” etc., as many of  the skills needed for them are amoral, meaning they are needed for skill in either good or bad things. Courage, discipline, perseverance, teamwork, mental fortitude, problem solving – these are all great, but are traits that can describe either the well trained gentleman, or the well trained bank robber alike.

Many look upon sport team involvement as highlights to their school days (though others see them as more of plauges). Sports can be an environment to channel energy in positive ways. Be careful to not be too trapped in the ultra-competitive school and community sports, where parents overly harp on children for performance. If the element of fun is present, the student will excel naturally and with minimal coaching. High intensity coaching situations should be elected by the child, not forced. Naturally there is a time and place for hardcore coaching, hell weeks, running drills, technique drills, etc. to maintain health, but the sport is to be foremost a delight. If teams are too competitive to even let you play without selling your soul to be good enough, look to your siblings neighbors and others to have fantastic sporting experiences.

Which sports are better than others? Other than avoiding brain damage or other frequent and serious bodily damage, I don’t suppose some sports are much better than others. The skater is an athlete just as much as the footballer. The tennis player and footbag player win a strong bill of health just like the soccer player (not Hercules perhaps, but most of us don’t need to be Hercules).

As for peer pressure, it’s found in any sport, football, skating, dancing (see my dancing materials in a book of their own), all have peer pressure. The dancer is tempted to dress less modestly than she needs to at both practice and while going through day to day life, and is tempted to judge her worth on her appearance. The skater is offered drugs and alcohol. The footballer is offered chewing tobacco alcohol and one-night stands. The wrestler and dancer are tempted to become anorexic to an unhealthy degree.

Those of any sport can be tempted to carry their passion to an extreme, which then gets in the way of religious and familial duties. The soccer mom can not have time for self or quiet time with the children because she runs around so much. The student can not have time to learn mathematics science reading literature drama music and other intellectual skills when the sport devours all attention. Parents should not feel pressure to shuttle everyone all the time. Some say boredom is the root of bad behavior, so they seek to overly fill their children’s schedules. In reality, bad behavior isn’t from boredom, it is from lack of discipline and a rebellious attitude. Overloading a child isn’t the magic recipe for character development, as an unruly child will be unruly wherever they are. Too much leisure time, including sport time, will tend to corrupt anyone. Children should be expected to give significant help with home chores, and develop not only physical and social talents, but mental and spiritual ones too.

Flexibility and strength help athletes and intellectual students alike to avoid burn out as they’ll enjoy more comfort throughout the day, having gained this level of control over their bodies. Bodies are central to any activity mental or otherwise, and therefore cannot be eliminated from any equation entirely. For most people, the happy way to exercise is through sports. A brilliant workout is one that you’ll actually be excited to do, and therefore, do. Buying a soccer ball may be much more effective than buying a treadmill. Workout equipment will appeal to athletes, but sporting equipment can appeal to almost everyone, even the “uncoordinated”.

Some claim that ‘sports build character’. This is true on some levels, but not entirely, or we would see without fail that the professional athletes were the towers of moral integrity in society! Someone pointed out that perhaps rather than sports building character, they reveal character. It has been said of Abraham that the reason he was commanded to do a hard thing was not for growth, but to learn how strong he was. Abraham needed to learn something about Abraham. Often sports can help young people to learn that when they apply the character traits they have learned (hard work, sharing, integrity, consistency/diligence, thoroughness, study, etc.), they can excel at things, and enjoy their lives. Can immoral people become good at sports? Yes, just as much as the traits to become a good bank robber also involve hard work, intelligence, team work, etc. So learning a sport or other trade doesn’t really build character (good character anyways), but it reveals character. Will Johnny stop to help the one who got hurt? Will he offer to teach a team mate who isn’t getting it? Will be practice at home when no one is looking? Will he refrain from cheating when no one would notice? Will he be truthful to his peers and leaders even when not doing so appears to promise short or long-term gains? Will he resist the invariable harlots that will flirt with him as he becomes an excellent athlete (and chose the virtuous woman instead)?

-the prophetic ‘Family Proclamation to the World’ (1995) teaches that wholesome recreation is one of the key elements to successful family life.

-Elder Neal A Maxwell played tennis even into his late years.

-President Thomas S. Monson understood that life should be joyful. He taught old folks in rest homes about how a football game works, so they could understand the game on television and enjoy it. He speaks about current ball games. He says fishing is good and spiritual. He says having animals and going to fairs is joyful. He says road shows and dance festivals are uplifting. He knows about what is going on in the local barber shop. Henry the 8th was his favorite Shakespeare play. Among his favorite theatrical works is the Phantom of the Opera. He enjoyed raising pigeons. (see book To The Rescue by Heidi Swinton)

-President Russel M Nelson skied even into his 90’s. He also spoke highly of the discipline of another man who regularly swam, not selfishly, but to keep his body strong so he could serve the Lord.

-President Monson was a regular swimmer.

-Joseph Smith told one man who had done much work for the building up of God’s kingdom. He needed to rest a while and enjoy himself. The man responded, “I cannot”. Joseph said, “then you will die.” The man indeed later died a premature death, and Joseph spoke at his funeral. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-When others chastised Joseph for playing sports, thinking that a prophet shouldn’t do such things, Joseph taught them that if you don’t unstring the bow from time to time, it loses its spring. This meant that to be effective he had to relax sometimes.

-Many saw Hyrum Smith as more prophet-like than Joseph, as Hyrum was less jovial and playful, but we know that these traits of Joseph helped him cope with his many trials, and uplift his fellows. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

-Joseph was hired as a farm hand not only because he was a hard worker, but because he could get the others to work too. (see Truman G Madsen Joseph Smith lectures)

In the Preach My Gospel manual we are taught to reserve the sabbath as a day free of sporting events: “When a community or nation grows careless in its Sabbath activities, its religious life decays and all aspects of life are negatively affected. The blessings associated with keeping the Sabbath day holy are lost. We should refrain from shopping on the Sabbath and participating in other commercial and sporting activities that now commonly desecrate the Sabbath. Latter-day Saints should set this holy day apart from activities of the world by entering into a spirit of worship, thanksgiving, service, and family-centered activities appropriate to the Sabbath. As Church members endeavor to make their Sabbath activities compatible with the intent and Spirit of the Lord, their lives will be filled with joy and peace.” (Preach My Gospel: What Should I Study And Teach: The Commandments: Keep the Sabbath Day Holy; https://www.lds.org/manual/preach-my-gospel-a-guide-to-missionary-service/lesson-4-the-commandments?lang=eng)

Activities for Child Play

 

We could get more extravagant, but these are simple affordable ideas for independent child play. As President Packer said, no one owes children entertainment (ref).

 

Outdoor:

 

-trampoline, swing sets, jungle gym

-explore the town, meet people, buy candy

-city park

-scooter, bike, rollerblade (be careful with skateboarding, the culture is often toxic)

-airsoft guns

-sand box, dig holes, find bugs

-play with farm animals, walk the dogs

-basketball, soccer, baseball, frizbee, golf, croquet, badminton, wrestle

-field games: hide and seek, capture the flag

-set up camp tents, fires, picknicks, ropes in the yard­

-swim pool, sprinklers, water balloon fight

 

Indoor:

-put wrestling/gymnastic mats on floor of garage, make it a rough n’ tumble play area or living room etc.

-fun or educational video games

-board and card games (take great care with these, they easily waste time and can lead to gambling)

-nerf guns

-dart board

-sword fencing (metal plastic or foam depending on age/skill)

-Legos, Knex, etc. hand building toys (better than Minecraft as increases hand eye coordination, etc.)

-playdough

-color & paint

-reading! Make this a popular event in your home!

-fun or educational movie, educational shows (Though they shouldn’t just entertain but also instill good morals and teach things)

 

 

 

 

 

Minimal Equipment Sports

 

These are sports you could play even in a bad economy where supplies aren’t very available. Its also wise to not become overly invested in these things as most aren’t financially able to responsibly take on major expenses like boats (and even if they can, there’s often better things to do with the funds).

Stock piling a few supplies for slightly more complex sports, such as a ball pump or a football, could help, but bear in mind others won’t have these excess items, so the sports of the day won’t include those complex equipment sports, so you won’t have anyone to play with. Also bear in mind that in case you need to travel and only bring a few belongings, bulky sporting items would be among the first to be left behind.

 

(I’m not counting running, stretching, weightlifting, as those are foundational things to be doing for any sport)

– old pioneer games (they didn’t have anything)

-foot bag: easy to sew little cloth bag with sand, crushed bean, or ground rock, just need feet, and shoes if you’re lucky

-soccer: just need a ball

-fencing: just need sticks; metal swords if and armor if you’re lucky; variations include baton spinning & bo staff etc.

-wrestling: no equipment

-gymnastics & parkour/free running

-dance: preferably you’ll have some instrument to accompany it; a tin whistle is a reasonably simple instrument, such that you could even inexpensively stock pile a number of them. All instruments are hard to construct, so buy extras in this season of plenty, and learn how to repair them.

-Your health and your greatest asset in these matters.

 

 

 

 

Women Should Not Be Warrior Killer Heroes

Women are heroes, but do they need to be the typically male type of hero, or is there another place for them to be heroic?

Should women be military figures? Should they go around killing people for the good of mankind? Should they be body builders? Haven’t the prophets called for more kind women, not more mean women? Isn’t it a theme of many movies these days to have women as the killers? Aren’t women’s bodies built different for a reason?

Consider joan of arc. But this is the exception rather than the rule.

Well did a prophet say that when we get the real history is the world and what made greatness, it will be mother’s who traded children well, more so than military generals, etc. When God needs change on earth, he sends a baby who will grow up well taught by its mother.

In 2003 we started really seeing women going to war overseas and placed in harm’s way. We are blind if we do not see the social impact that this has had on our families, especially our fathers and the men in our lives. Men have abandoned the Christian principles of “Women and Children First”. Sending women overseas would make no sense whatsoever if as a society we did not stop teaching this. Now, it is survival of the fittest with evolution thinking winning. No longer is it where men lay will down their lives for women. This principle is gone and we have been desensitized to it through movies, books, and images that are constantly thrown at us. No one is protecting their homes from this evil thinking that is part of shaming our men. We are now okay to hear women raped, and legs blown off or captured and attacked- it doesn’t shock us as we have allowed an agenda through our amusements to come into our homes and shred the most foundational part of our Christian upbringing. 🙁

The adversary wants a woman anywhere but in the home nurturing her children or building the kingdom of God.

This is why the new Mulan movie really bothers me. The world seems to only put value on a woman if they use their gifts to fill mens roles in relation to violence and war. But then, the world is obsessed with war. What would the world really be like if our men could put their strength and gifts fully into creative endeavors instead of destructine ones. Obviously there are plenty of women with exceptional physical strengths and gifts, but it makes me so sad that the world twists everything so that women only have value if they are more like warring men and men only have value if they shed their righteously protective and creative gifts.

I believe women should not serve in the military for many reasons. We are built differently inside and out. There is a lot of scientific evidence to support this. Women are made to be nurturers. We bring individuals together and provide comfort. Men are built to provide protection and strength. We fulfill our roles best when we follow the principles of the gospel.

Judge deborah apparently went into battle with her husband barrack

 

 

 

Recreation & Dimensions of Good

Does a thing need a moral “lesson” to be “good”?

There are many dimensions of good. There are good morals. There are things good for the strength of the body but otherwise meaningless. There are things good for gladdening the heart but otherwise meaningless. There are things which are good because they are fun. Some things meet several levels of good and are therefore particularly good. But we honor each category of good.

Sometimes we can reach for highest good. Handel said after writing the Messiah symphony, that he would be terribly disappointed if all it did was entertain people. It had a much deeper/higher purpose.

But we need not throw things out which do not simultaneously meet all the levels of good. Basketball for instance, a favorite of President Kimball, won’t get you to heaven, but it will help you keep the commandment to take care of your body and enjoy life.

Many oppose Dr. Suess books as they were bazar and without plain moral messages. But the fun with Dick and Jane books were also bazar and meaningless, just in a different way. There is a possibility that the Dr. Suess books help us in that it’s an interesting way to explore and enjoy, and learn to read.

Should we have a steady diet of only the fluff, only the ‘trivial’? No, but we need not entirely ban it either.

One reviewer at RK BUKZ pointed out some noble themes in some Dr. Suess books. He said, “Dr. Seuss was passionate about [various subjects] throughout his life: duty (as in Horton Hears a Who and Horton Hatches the Egg); the abuse of power (as in The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins and Yertle the Turtle); deceit (as in The Bippolo Seed and How the Grinch Stole Christmas).” (https://rk1bukz.cf/read.php?id=Gq7xAwAAQBAJ)

I’m reminded of a children’s book author who spoke at a local school assembly. His books were mostly fantastic and silly. He said once an old man approached him at his first lecture about his books and grilled him, telling him that his books didn’t have morals, and were therefore shameful. When he told this story the audience laughed, as if to say ‘what a ridiculous old man!’ But this story has stayed with me. Perhaps the old man was right. I too worry that far too much of children’s books today are trivial, over the top fantasy which has little to no implication for their lives. There is moderation in all things, but I think we are now living on a steady diet of French fries when it comes to literature. Too much of anything, including too much of reading which is solely suited to entertain, is not good.

A boy who enjoys a sport does it because he enjoys it. At the same time, he is strengthening his muscles, and extending his lifespan, which are good things. The same can be said of someone who enjoys a mentally stimulating video game or novel, it can exercise those organs and faculties. He does it because he enjoys it, but it also serves to exercise his faculties. All of this said, we must have moderation in all things. Someone who just plays ball all day and someone who just plays games or reads novels all day, they all need serious course correction, and to become more in tune with the faculties which they are neglecting. Video games, sports, novels, these can be downright edifying sometimes, we just need to make sure we are staying balanced and keen to the promptings of the Lord.

We may not need excessive time to relax and unwind, we may be quite able to unwind very well in more useful endeavors. It may be wise to keep recreational pursuits in general at a minimum. The Bruce R McConkie family certainly kept entertainments to a minimal. They were a gospel and learning oriented family, they hardly even did sports together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Which Witch is Which? Biblical Tolerance for Magic in Fantasy Novels red text insert pending edit put this in the pro fantasy essay as a section

 

The single greatest argument against the fantasy genre is that it has witches, which are condemned in the bible. However, we may be talking about some very different things entirely. Lets take a look at some possibilities.

 

The witches in fantasy may be entirely different than the witches which are condemned in the bible. As a friend of mine put it, “That which is condemned is seeking to circumvent God, relying on other channels for salvation and spiritual meaning.  Those who practice that sort of thing are an entirely different sort of thing from what you were describing.  In contrast, fantasy is fiction.  It lets you explore aspects of what is through the lens of what is not.  Like it or not, where is the evil?  Does it provoke one to evil, in any way?  If not, it sounds pretty safe to me.  People that read fantasy do not become soothsayers, or even become less spiritually sensitive.  Fantasy all but literally means “fiction”–man’s creation.  We do not worship the work of man’s hands, but man is meant to create; it is part of our divine heritage. To ban fiction on that grounds seems like madness.”

 

But CS Lewis is required reading for Wiccens.

 

Do fantasy books worship wizards instead of God and true priesthood? A friend said, “Who’s worshiping the wizards?  Not in the books I’ve read.  They’ve almost always depicted as just people. Often, there is a God or gods separate from them, much closer to our concept of things. I have read other fiction that’s closer to what you’re worrying about–stuff that promotes a “humanist” (atheist) man-must-save-himself or man-and-science-are-superior-to-religion message.  Almost none of it has been in the fantasy genre.”

 

Do we allow wizards of fantasy just because they’re fake, and say they would be evil if they were real? A friend said, “It’s not so much ok because it’s fake, but because it’s different.  If the fake magic of fiction included all of the evil stuff that the soothsayers of earth are associated with, it would be just as bad.  And if all of the other stuff in that book were real along with the magic, I doubt that practicing magic would even be condemned by the bible in the first place.”

 

Even Disney fantasy uses magic. Many shows on witches and witch families. Most of them are about using their powers for good and evil. Some use it for good some use it for bad but both are using magic and wizardry. An evil dark feeling comes with those programs. Some magic use is more child fairy tale, other deep adult horror dark type.

The witch idea as currently put out by the media is that there is good wizardry, when there is not.

Perhaps its putting it in our world that it gets bad. But fake world or real world setting, both are based on human characteristics. As a writer all you pull is from real life no matter what you are writing. All novels are social commentary. Romantic fiction says there is happiness and peace to be found in a messed up society, good people despite many bad. Realistic fiction there are many types of social commentary about issues with various roles and injustices.

Science fiction is about if the barriers to our knowledge weren’t here what could we do, that if you could be a nobody but still create something what would you do? The nerdy overlooked kid breaks the barriers in the knowledge world. Fantasy is about good vs evil.

LDS are obsessed with it because we live trying to make sense of the black and white, but when we do this often we make gray. But the fantasy novels have no savior. They overcome their weaknesses with no higher power. There is no higher power for them to appeal to, or if there is, its witchcraft.

Maybe the fantasy is saying the good guys win, but are they showing that the bad guys are the good guys by having them be wizards?

 

Does wizardry & witchcraft in fantasy inspire people to rebel against God, or practice magic in real life? A friend said, “In contrast to being a rebellion against the natural order, in most fantasy magic is depicted as natural; one does not rebel against God in using it.  In fantasy, it’s not just the act of magic that’s different–it’s the entire world around the magic that’s different.  It’s a question of “what if the world were like this and that?” — not of “what if I played with magic one day?”.  (often, fantasy points out how little the human and moral aspects of life change with the presence of magic (or whatever other insert made it “fantasy”–half of fantasy has no “magic” at all)). …”real life” magic is condemned because magic is fake.  “Practicing Magic” is longing for something which does not exist–hoping for power where none is to be had, turning from the true power (God) in seeking it.  The bad “magic” that is real looks nothing like the magic in books–it’s something else entirely disguised as magic and taking advantage of people’s resistance to accept the truth that there’s only one path to good–righteousness, and the fount thereof.”

 

Magic isn’t powerless, wiccens and energy healers do use power. People make deals with the devil because they get something out of it. Today is the day of Satans power.

 

The bible condemns wizards & witches; You’ve heard it said ‘don’t play with bad things’? A friend said, “Yep.  Don’t do witchcraft.  And don’t follow a book which encourages or suggests that you to practice witchcraft in real life–or even which romanticises or suggests playing with it.  Avoid any real life witches and wizards–if you’d even recognize them looking for the sort of stuff that most fantasy books describe.

Reading about something with the same name but a different meaning entirely isn’t something I’d even call “playing with it”.  See previous section–the magic of books doesn’t much resemble the magic of hebrew tradition and biblical mention.  Good luck pulling off any of the evil stuff by saying “bippity boppity boo” like the fairy godmother from that work of fantasy Cinderella.”

 

 

Sometimes evil gets put into what seem innocent things. Evil Satan words sang in happy hymns in an unknown tongue, etc.

Children imitate what they see. We don’t want them trying to be witches to have fun.

Its less inspiring to see what a real person accomplishes than what a fictional person accomplishes.

Cinderella legend is in several cultures. Miracles happen to allow her to have blessings despite the abuse she endures.

The heroes adventure has a few repeated themes that can be found in Star Wars, all these.

What’s the difference between magic and miracle? Good people are awarded by miracles to help them on their quests. Even people without the fullness of the gospel can have faith to do miracles.

Joan of Arc did miracles and felt directed by God.

LDS like magic because they believe each individual can have priesthood power to do miracles? Those not LDS feel like LDS are a cult because the LDS do infact do miracles? LDS look at wiccens and wizards and say ya’ll are doing demonic things because they are.

Tolerance of others who have a false priesthood is different from acceptance of it and allowing it into your home. We get where Harry Potter is coming from, but we don’t promote him since he is false.

 

If there were real wizards with real power, wouldn’t reading books where they are featured as the heroes make people want to turn to them, rather than the pesky prophets who want us to live by a strict moral code? A friend agreed, “THERE we go.  Yup yup, that would be bad.  That is (at least one of) the evil of wizardry.  Avoid books that encourage this. Most books I’ve read, the wizards aren’t pitted against the forces of righteousness–and when they are, they loose.  When depicted as protagonists, they too learn the importance of a moral code and a disciplined life–they learn human lessons, and can rarely circumvent nature–whatever nature means in their world. The turning away from God is a bigger problem than the magic itself, and is why seeking solutions via witchcraft is condemned even when said whichcraft is a lie and doesn’t do anything–which is overwhelmingly often the case.”

 

When we use wizards and witches to save the day, are we to an extent saying ‘don’t smoke, but here read this book about a guy who defeats the bad guys via smoking?’ A friend talked about how word definitions are important here, “If the magic in the book were of a similar nature to smoking, then yes.  It rarely is, though.  It’s more like a book about a guy who defeats the bad guy via “smoking”–the I-just-made-it-up practice of throwing a ninja smoke bomb to disorient someone so you can get away.  I think it’s reading too much into a word rather than the idea that word represents.  It’s also why it’s so hard to talk to some people–we’re hardly speaking the same language.

When we are speaking the same language, such a book as you described would sound ridiculous, and would probably serve to teach a good lesson on the foolishness of trying to smoke your way out of your problems, as a parody.

I’ve read some fantasy wherein magic existed, was depicted as evil (and, in that world, had things that made it qualify as evil), and was demonstrated to be bad, with the conclusion “it’s good we don’t have this; careful what you wish for” (the old legend of the “monkey’s paw”, for example?).  Couldn’t have gotten that wholesome lesson on contentedness without a little temporary suspension of disbelief.

If on the other hand, it’s actually encouraging some evil practice, then it’s bad.”

 

 

Good point. Magical fish story, he gets this magic fish and wishes for so much stuff and loses all, is never satisfied.

Perhaps magic is a universal literary plot device as a power beyond our own that can help us if we are good, and if we are bad it works against us. Magic in myth and fairy tales is humans trying to explain a higher power without the higher power there, often well meaning. Perhaps fantasy helps explain a higher power without higher power being there. That the wizardry isn’t technical wizardry as seen in practice today. Those lines become blurry since we use the same terminology.

The young person doesn’t know about the higher power. But he stumbles upon it. He then uses the power for good or evil. When for evil he ends up hurting himself and those he loves in the end. When used for good, it turns out to be better for everyone.

Alladin Disney has bad subliminal messages immodesty and genie acts  gay. Live Disney alladin isn’t as immodest but does have back-beat music. Some background subliminal messages in the cartoon Disney.

Movies expose evil on a new level with the images etc. if it gives kids nightmares it shouldn’t be watched. WW2 movies can be good but bad if shown to young audiences.

 

 

If Tolkien and others wrote based on pagan mythology, this doesn’t necessarily mean bad. A friend said, “That something is “from” another religion doesn’t make it bad.  Buddhism teaches to avoid detachment from worldly things–this is good.  If you see version of “don’t be worldly” that’s eastern-flavored, is it any less true?  While there are Buddist beliefs that are false, that’s not one of them.  Similarly, good abounds in all places.  Some of this is because we’re all humans, and have some idea of morality ingrained in us–so even totally man-made religions will independently state it.  Some of it is because there have been like a billion apostacies, and half of religions fell off, in some way or another, from something originally true.”

 

Was Tolkien copying pagan books and evil pagan rituals? A friend of mine said, “He was copying mythology, mostly norse.  In crafting a deep, complicated world with a history and an origin, and a mythological nature.. he drew on mythology. I don’t think he was actually copying pagan anti-Christian rituals/moral beliefs–none of that human sacrifice and fertility festivals and idols and such that you hear people associating with paganism.  Those are the main.  The moral beliefs that are present in Tolkien’s works are basically those common to Christianity as well… present almost anywhere, in fact.  The part he “copied” was more of mythological history.  I would be beyond shocked if he was making an effort to subvert our minds by sneaking in that wicked old pagan stuff in disguise. These myths are so completely everywhere by now that not copying them is nearly impossible.”

 

In many presentations against Tolkien etc., the preacher condemns them because they go against some traditional Christian Protestant views. But the latter-day saint doctrines also go against traditional Protestant views, and many of the views in these books which the Protestants hate are doctrines which the saints love! These include things like the potential for people to become like God, a pre-mortal existence, works having a large role in our salvation, learning to follow personal conscience, etc.

 

The Silmarillion by Tolkien has many similarities with latter-day saint thought and doctrine as to the origin of Satan, etc. It has actually been criticized by secular audiences as being ‘overly bible-esque.’ Further, many Christians reject this book as heresy because it looks more like latter-day saint theology than typical Christian theology.

 

 

Biblical Verses Against Witches, Soothsayers, Magic, Divination, etc. pending

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Appendix 1: Entertainment Resources

 

Book: Oestreicher, L. The Pied Pipers of Autism—How TV, Video, and Toys Cause ASD. 2011: Merced

David Williamson Shaffer: how computer games help children learn

 

 

 

Appendix 2: Music resources

imslp.org – Petrucci Music Library – public domain sheet music & recordings

8notes.com – much free sheet music for various instruments, even more for the 20$/year subscription

-seek chord charts (piano, guitar, accordion, etc.)

-seek fingering charts

-seek fret/note label/location stickers (violin, guitar, piano, accordion, etc.)

-Essencial Elements is a good series of how to books for various instruments

-for dummies series: classical guitar, home music recording, singing exersizes, music theory

-metronome

-Note: avoid cheap music vendors, they’re likely pirates just trying to make a profit off of you, instead of giving credit to the artists. If you have some backup mp3’s, ensure you have a public streaming service you pay for monthly so the artists are getting paid.

 

 

 

 

Appendix: Studio C Comedy Suggested Clips likely trash

I don’t suggest all of their stuff as some of it gets rude, but I quite enjoy these:

 

Manly – effeminate Provo boys

 

 

Ditching Darby

 

 

Fail – testing center

 

 

Provo, UT Girls

 

 

Cougars

 

 

Mormon Misunderstanding – not strange yet strange

 

 

The Revenant: Back from the dead – fight with she bear, swam back up stream to say goodbye

 

 

Life Lessons from Grandma:

 

 

Scary story of the future

 

 

The Phantom of the Opera’s girl problems

 

 

Hazel: most annoying coworker

 

 

Bad roommate Agatha – dark poetry

 

 

ER – Vet Division

 

 

Dubstep DJ

 

 

The Origins of Country Music

 

 

French Revolution Manhunt

 

 

Disgruntled Commoners

 

 

Attila the Hun’s Deathbed

 

 

Asking for her dad’s permission

 

 

A Kindergarten fight for love

 

 

Baskins Robins love confession – love too fast

 

 

Kids Should Love Money (featuring Stars)

 

 

Caught in the crosshairs – hobo enters relationship – meet my parents – raise these kids

 

 

Fastest Newscast Ever

 

 

The Janitor: Library Love

 

 

Mr. Eckelstone Teaches Drivers Ed

https://www.youtube.com/watch?annotation_id=annotation_646357&feature=iv&src_vid=3GeaFfhaYkI&v=EP53YTa2SEQ

 

Downtown Drama – priorities – dinner moved back hour smashes cup

 

 

Flirting Academy

 

 

Flirting Academy Graduation

The Mad Scientist Ruins Valentine’s Day

 

The Mad Scientist Ruins Sports

 

The Mad Scientist Creates Junior High School

https://www.youtube.com/watch?annotation_id=annotation_2824125367&feature=iv&src_vid=k8iR8zC7pWE&v=9mR8-loJNpU

 

Table for one

 

 

Pokemon Go ruined my wedding

 

 

Love from afar

 

 

Mr. Eckelstone’s Drivers Ed: Winter Edition

 

Worst Psychiatrist Ever

 

https://youtu.be/9QoLIZK4T3g

 

Worst Waiter Ever

 

 

Worst Teacher Ever

 

 

Worst Lawyer Ever

 

 

Worst Cop Ever

 

 

Worst Plumber Ever

 

 

Studio C Grinch

Watch This! Ultimate Skate Park Disaster with Shonduras

 

 

Jason Bourne Resurfaces in 2016

 

 

Awkward Moment With Puritan Roommate

 

 

Strangest Sound on a Date

 

 

The Guest List of His Royal Majesty

 

 

The art of the Setup

 

 

Typical Country Song

 

 

Top Crime Scene Photographer

 

 

Presidential Fail

 

 

Courting Ritual – humans in their natural habitat

 

 

Life Alert Dating

 

 

Santa’s Love Languages

 

 

Santa’s Worst Present Ever

 

 

Santa’s Elves go on Strike

 

 

Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven, Christmas Edition

 

 

ESPN Matt Center, Part 2

 

 

Cheer Up Mix Up – giving a puppy

 

 

Crisis at the Confessional

 

 

Fugitive Man Hunt – exhaustive investigation

 

 

Advent Calendar Temptation

 

 

Pic or it didn’t happen

 

 

Touch Up – hikers get overhaul

 

 

Gandalf Intervention

 

 

The Center for People That YouTube Made Infamous

 

 

Facebook friends song

 

 

The Entertainment 2: Assisted Living Community

 

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#search/watch/15d6a2615c90190d

 

How to be a famous reality star

 

 

The Most Organic Vlog: Christmas Hacks

 

 

The Most Organic Vlog: Diet Tips

 

 

The Most Organic Vlog: Parenting Tips

 

 

Cutting out holidays

 

 

Hibiscus Bisque

 

 

What’s in a name

 

 

A Mother’s overbearing Love

 

 

You Deserve a Better You – free yourself from goals

 

 

Gift exchange

 

 

Cupcake Wars Interrupted by Jealous Husband – gender roles

 

 

Boy Band Breakup

 

 

Once Upon a Time

 

 

Christmas Shopping by the 4 Wise Men

 

 

The Queen on Twitter

 

 

Grandma Tildy

 

 

Playing Devil’s Advocate – oil tycoons using souls as currency

 

 

A Germaphobe’s Nightmare https://youtu.be/cv4H8JvZIas

Santa and the Christmas Blue’s https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMxNNBdfxbI

Thesis Defence – this is war https://youtu.be/Lrlro3YJ15o

Help me – I need your wallet and girlfriend https://youtu.be/VV5p0_yZWwI

Message from Above https://youtu.be/ofW4-xePKVA

Secret Agent Siting https://youtu.be/A-E7Tr5PbZI

Lobster Bisque https://youtu.be/A2KCGQhVRTE

Beware of Christmas Carolers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z0fEm3xYKfE

Everyone’s a Winner https://youtu.be/qe6dHwS7InQ

The Bacon Cleanse https://youtu.be/zqD5hDbgLyU

The Hunchback of BYU https://youtu.be/zqD5hDbgLyU

The School of Fashion https://youtu.be/dsc8EvzgaFk

The Knights of the Holy Grail https://youtu.be/l7fhRtgc6_M

The Great Train Robbery https://youtu.be/uk4WqPH5y64

James Austen https://youtu.be/-dEsaYj1JFk

The 12 Days of Christmas from Studio C https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B5F2gDx-p_c

Backyard Crime Cover-up https://www.youtube.com/watch?annotation_id=annotation_3780083021&feature=iv&list=PLGVpxD1HlmJ9hNQ46m3lUXh9mF8WPULLe&src_vid=B5F2gDx-p_c&v=m7sV7OJND1c

16th Century Med School https://youtu.be/ZSEqbXed1Mo

Foreign Exchange https://youtu.be/puZb1VUdo2M

Lord of the Dance https://youtu.be/KSyRZ11HSx0

Shakespearean Therapy https://youtu.be/RhUY9li_roA

Black Friday https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CnMcTJPaKfs&index=18&list=PLGVpxD1HlmJ9hNQ46m3lUXh9mF8WPULLe

Superman’s Sibling – comparing https://www.youtube.com/watch?annotation_id=annotation_71910201&feature=iv&src_vid=YfWWQdEJwqo&v=wjarzQWtBwM

Republicans vs. Democrats https://youtu.be/aXyDAi51A7s

Metropolitan Boy Scouts https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XkPh-d2f8wA&sns=em

The Amish go green https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXnEAoOaTdc&sns=em

The Absent Minded Robber – forgets why came, activities in home https://youtu.be/4T37hu6RrIE

Crazy Mall Kiosk – avoid at all cost https://youtu.be/YIGEwAuWpB8

Overdue Military Letters https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUKmAyoMb9c

A chess player prodigy – be fair, don’t judge! https://youtu.be/quio0o9TfW4

Longest Grocery Store Checkout Line https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZjdKPDsYA7o

Political Correctness Puzzles Police https://youtu.be/tQByeGkJJSc

Password Protection Problems https://youtu.be/jtiZIa2fWAQ

The Restaurant of Life https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PL5q8HOYVU0

Every Fight Ever https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6sMnQsv7Hk

Practical Philosophy – talking criminals out of crime https://www.youtube.com/watch?annotation_id=annotation_506501493&feature=iv&src_vid=lKimaAhyakc&v=tu3v87_97Hc

Prom Dress Gone Wrong – Brooklyn and Bailey https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Idh6xH9-sCk

Les Mormonables https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3XXjn4hVUA

The Hunchback of BYU https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=94FwS8Z6kK8

Phantom of the Awkward https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C3bN3oPiX1Y

The OTHER Parent Trap | Parody with Studio C https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unFAHooh_zE

High School Boyfriend Drama – ft. Studio C | Brooklyn and Bailey https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FYlxh5TP6o

This is my theme song https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAc87uKWstM

You can do anything https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=avixPJQiRfw

Epic Photoshoot with Top Model Lucky Blue https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWNwB1DfuL4

The Great British Bake Off: Tarts https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PIrRpgWfY4M

Nintendo NES will save the world – nerd saves world https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-3hIzo3MBKY

the piano guys behind the piano guys https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUuMhg9NtxY&t=2s

man on a ledge https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZoI-MFnTHE&t=75s

ghost schedules haunting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IX3qMuFg0uI&t=25s

Operation Breakup https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3GeaFfhaYkI&t=3s

Operation Breakup 2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWw60iFRGBo

Bollyside story – westside story Bollywood https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swz7mKnIvkQ

Your favorite teen drama https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1tQ5W-NAlRI&t=165s

Ugly cop – good cop bad cop https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vCTtWPpV6dM&t=3s

Famous last words before execution https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fGgyLzJn1zM

Vidangel with Matt Neese: https://youtu.be/9XOjdARr87I

Does VidAngel ruin art? https://youtu.be/2Zhk-g5ebRY

Is VidAndel legal? https://youtu.be/9TZRTkRgAFc

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Appendix: Dance Resources

-Swing Kids Alumni Page (BYU) (783 member) https://www.facebook.com/groups/BYUswingkids/

-Utah Irish Dance Exchange (for Utah Irish Dancers and Parents to Ask, Discuss, Sell or Buy anything concerning Irish Dance! This is NOT for just one school, but EVERYONE in Utah areas!) (291 members) https://www.facebook.com/groups/1438686883035432/

-Salsa and Ballroom Dancing in Utah (364 members) https://www.facebook.com/groups/125440385180/

 

-Clogging vs. Tap vs. Irish Step (competition between the 3)

-Top 10 traditional dances

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvPWgo3JL9c

part 2 of 10 traditional dances (10 more): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=igGEwbzE3V8

-The Difference between East and West Coast Swing Dances

https://myballroomdanceclub.com/2011/08/24/ballroom-dance-explained-the-difference-between-east-and-west-coast-swing-dances/

(west more sensual, east faster. Explains time periods and other sub types of swing also.)

-Sky Dancing: How One Dance Group Defies Gravity (Bandaloop Dance Company)

-East coast vs west coast swing

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7P_o_ERFLwo see also westcoastswingonline.com

(west is slower and in a line back and forth, east is faster and in a cirular patturn)

 

 

African traditional

 

Albanian

 

Arabic (see also Turkish, Lebanese)

 

I’m not a fan of belly dancing but I’ve not given up on the search for good Arabic dance.

Ballet (France)

 

Ballroom Classical

 

For a Wikipedia article on Ballroom dance and subtypes including modern variations:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballroom_dance

 

Indian (South Asian) Traditional

 

 

 

Indian (South Asian) Modern (Bollywood)

Much of this is scandalous but some can be uplifting.

 

Tutorial from Monkey See: https://monkeysee.com/how-to-bollywood-dance/

 

Brazilian fight dance

 

Breakdance

 

Bulgarian

 

Chinese Classical

 

Clogging (see also Irish Step and Tap)

 

Cossak (Russia)

 

Country Swing (USA) (see also Eastern Swing, Western Swing, Country Line)

After searching high and low for dance instructions with modest teachers, we found a series “Swing Dance Lessons on DVD”.

Country Line (see also country swing) (USA)

 

Flamenco (see also tap, Irish step, clogg)

 

-Flamenco Street Dancing in Spain https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LYwO3aeBLtQ

– 2016 IDO World Championships – “Spanish Flame” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCVtQirdNkc

 

 

Folk (Deutschland)

 

Foxtrot (Ballroom variant; fast version called Quickstep)

 

Gavotte (Renaissance, Baroque, Gallantries)

-https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0tB2rGh1kM

-https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gavotte

https://www.britannica.com/art/gavotte

 

Gregorian

 

-Georgian Dancers Push Their Physical Limits for Tradition https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lObbGydVSg4

Highland (Scotland)

 

Hungarian

 

Irish

 

Irish Step (see also clogging flamenco and tap)

 

Israeli

 

-Rosh Hashanah Rock Anthem

-Y-Studs (A Capella) – Evolution of Jewish Music

 

 

Italian

 

Jive (see also swing)

 

Kurdistan

 

Quickstep (fast Foxtrot)

 

Mazurka (Poland)

 

Shuffling

 

-How to Shuffle (Dance Moves Tutorial) | Mihran Kirakosian

-SHUFFLE TUTORIAL | cutting shapes | BASE

-Rosh Hashanah Rock Anthem

 

Swing, Eastern (USA) (see also Western swing, country swing)

 

 

 

Swing, Western (USA) (see also Eastern swing, country swing)

 

Tap (see also clogging, Irish Step, flamenco)

 

-Arther Duncan – “Tea for Two” – tap dance on The Lawrence Welk Show https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=homQ3kgI4Fo

 

 

Tarantella (Italy)

 

Turkish (see also Lebanese, Arabic)

 

Ukrainian

 

Waltz (see also Viennese Waltz)

 

Viennese Waltz (see also Waltz)

 

 

Instrument Resources

 

Sections:

Accordion – Bagpipes – Banjo – Clarinet – Flute – Guitar – Harmonica – Harp – Percussion – Piano – Tin Whistle – Violin – Vocal

 

Accordion

 

Dolan’s pub (Limerick, Ireland) – Irish Traditional Music Session (with great accordion)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O9a8pVGa1Mo

 

Bagpipes

 

FourWinds. The Flags of Dublin – (With fast bagpipes & accordion)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5uqcoeLR7TA

 

Banjo

 

 

 

Clarinet

 

 

Flute

 

-Sacred Place by Mary Youngblood on Sacred Place

 

 

Guitar: General

 

-Here is a great acoustic guitar teacher, Kelly Valleau (kellyvalleau.com); about $11/month to subscribe to his website. The free portion is videos of him doing songs which you can learn lots from, but for tutorials and tabs to music he wrote for guitar based on popular music, subscribe to his website. Check out his YouTube channel too. Buying tabs on his songs are about 5$ when you’re a subscriber (half of the usual about $10). From what I’ve seen of his videos, he is a great teacher with lots of fun songs.

-free tabs and tutorial videos etc www.tabs4acoustic.com

www.ultimate-guitar.com (free or pro versions)

-Materials from TL (takelessons.com): Why to use sheet music not tabs by TL https://takelessons.com/blog/classical-guitar-tabs-or-sheet-music ; Learn to read sheet music for guitar by TL https://takelessons.com/blog/learn-to-read-guitar-sheet-music ; Reading guitar tabs by TL https://takelessons.com/blog/how-to-read-guitar-tabs-z01 ; Guitar chords for beginners by TL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwPswoolmz0&feature=youtu.be&list=PL6sZOxaobhPa8t8YI0NCFSBHY5rz509D_

-Mr Levi Clay: the country fingerstyle guitar method: a complete guide to Travis Picking, Fingerstyle guitar, & country guitar soloinn

-Rob Thorpe: first pieces for classical guitar

 

Guitar: Celtic

 

-Stephen Wake, acoustic Celtic fingerpicking guitarist: Buy tabs for music by Stephen Wake at his website. ; Celtic Fingerstyle Guitar – Three Irish Reels – DADGAD – Stephen Wake (one of my favorites) https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=37&v=IVlvhfWcNho ; Celtic Guitar – Return to Kintail/ Calliope House – Stephen Wake https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLm7O2hIYIo ; Celtic Guitar Jig and two reels – Stephen Wake https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EriD_PKRmAE

-Flatpicking Celtic guitar book and audio CD on Amaon https://www.amazon.com/Flatpicking-Celtic-Guitar-Book-audio/dp/1934163279

-Glenn Weiser has written several books on Celtic guitar. Check out his site and book store: celticguitarmusic.com/books. Check out some of his materials:  Celtic Fingerstyle Guitar Books  |  Harmonica Books  |  Music Lessons  | CDs
Harmonica Main  |  Celtic Main  |  Blues Main  |  Fingerstyle Main   |
Free Celtic Guitar Arrangements  |  Free Celtic Harmonica Arrangements  |  Online Celtic Tunebook

 

Guitar: Finger Callus (likely delete all this)

acoustic strings are harder so help with callus

short frequent practices rather than long sessions

dip fingertips in alcohol to dry the skin out (Eric Clapton did) (seems harmful though)

keep your left (fret) hand with short fingernails so the finger does the pressing, not the nail

press fingertips on a plastic card or other hard thin solid edge

you can buy a guitar callus builder tool, like “Varigrip” by Planet Waves

apple cider vinegar soak before and after practice may relieve pain

don’t play guitar right after hands wet or the strings shave off weeks of calluses; you could use a hair drier to dry your hands if you need to play soon after water.

You don’t need to press on the strings super hard, that just makes fingers tired faster, and potentially develop carpal tunnel or tendinitis.

don’t put superglue on finger, makes strings messy, and doesn’t develop callus

don’t pick at the callus

in a month or so the callus will develop and you won’t have pain when you play

get the fingertip to callus in more than just one spot by intentionally using other parts of the fingertip so that when you need to do slides etc. you’re ok

dig your thumbnail into your other fingertips

do exersizes of playing 3 notes at a time as seen in this article https://www.guitarhabits.com/21-cool-3-notes-per-string-exercises-to-rock-on/

playing 30 minutes a day you should have calluses in about a week

some layers of skin may fall off, there are harder layers of skin underneath, this is normal

some advanced guitarists say calluses are not needed, and are even more responsive to the strings, but most guitarists seem to have calluses.

If there is sharp pain you may be hurting nerves so take a break

If you play for a long time like 4 hours, your fingers will hurt even if you have callus

If you use hand lotion, wipe if off of the fingertips

Look into finger exercise tools

 

Harmonica

 

-see Glenn Weiser’s stuff  Harmonica Main  (from celticguitarmusic.com)

Harp

 

-The Butterfly by Aine Minogue on Circle of the Sun

-Artist: Amy Turk

 

Percussion

 

Piano

– Peter PlutaX: This is a brilliant piano teacher, check out his YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/MrPeter19916). His videos are of piano keys with lines showing where to play, meaning beginners can learn fun pieces without becoming discouraged by years of basic sight reading drills. His program is like Simply Piano.

-Check out the Simply Piano by Joytunes (an app etc.) (see also joytunes.com) which shows both notes and keys to learn simultaneously. 25 courses for different music levels. Many fun songs.

-Flow Key (flowkey.com) is another piano school which shows where to place fingers while showing notes.

-I’ve seen some brilliant apps and computer programs pop up lately which are a sort of tabs for piano, helping the student learn some music from the get go without being bogged down by what looks like the impossible skill of sight reading music.

-YouTube Channel Rousseau (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPZUQqtVDmcjm4NY5FkzqLA) shows intense classic piano pieces (more than just Rousseau) played along with the streaming lines, amazing.

-Bollywood Piano tutorials with Dhruv Gandhi on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClUDTB6EJvzP7eY5Wgl4lRw); his stuff has piano keys, no hands, moving bars, and piano key notes labeled. Free mp3’s and sheet music as well.

-Simply Piano app appearently prepares you better to read sheet music than does the Yousician app.

-Become a Piano Superhuman youtube channel; this guy has great suggestions on specific plans for learning, and fast.  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1V2zI_VQ5et66WtKXhAXXA/playlists

-Artist: Ludovico Einaudi

-Stars by Helen Lane Long on Porcelain

-On A Magician’s Flight by Faun

 

Tin Whistle

 

Traditional Irish Tin Whistle Music [Doolin Style] (By the Online Academy of Irish Music) (amazing fast tin whistler)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mpN36I9xr-o

 

Violin

Irish set- Banjo & fiddles (with great fiddling) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCw4O_L1LFQ

My hope is that an elementary amount of skill with the violin can suffice to play for dancing. This is a good start on the way to classical violin.

 

Vocal

 

Jane Zhang Sings The Diva Dance from 5th Element (Epic Soprano Heights) https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=286&v=kJl2uPNsJEk

 

 

On Some Favorite Sports

Book Suggestion: As we start to look at various sports, I suggest a book called Rules of the Game: Complete Illustrated Encyclopedia of all Sports.

Avoid Extremes: Also allow me to say that playing sports is good, but watching them can be a toxic addiction when taken to an extreme, especially when that extreme takes away from family duties, church duties, physical health, or violating the holy Sabbath of our God.

Ballet: The finest of dances, the French revelations on dance have revolutionized the modern world of art.

Flexibility: A BYU cross country running coach once said something to this effect: give me the strongest runner, and though he may not currently be the fastest, I will train him in flexibility, then he will be the fastest.

Footbag (Hacky Sack): Minimal equipment, maximum fun! Get your 1st 100 kicks down, then move on to tricks. This is fun for indoor and outdoor play, alone or with friends.

Jumping: While holding stick, jump through it and back. Jump over things, standing and running, and make it higher and higher. Pole vault. Long jump / Jump at the mark. Weighted shoe jumping. Jump roping. Jumping jacks

Gymnastics: The sky is the limit here! This is one of the most magnificent arts of the body and requires great strength.

Martial Arts: Have fun while learning to defend yourself. Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) as well as Asian Martial arts. From what I understand, there is a $40/month club in the Provo Utah area for HEMA. Groups for this sort of thing are hard to find. You will find HEMA duels at Renaissance festivals. It would also be interesting to see modernized HEMA type dueling, using the blunted broad sword, but with much more convenient armor.

Running: If you can avoid injury, running can be a good in many ways. If you’re into marathon class shoes and want a “fit like a glove” special shoe, go to Salt Lake Running, but you’ll not get out without spending at least $100. Runners Corner is also good. They’ll analyze your gait, etc. Some aren’t running fans. Runners insist, “it’s because you don’t run enough.” I heard a story of someone who set out and ran 2 marathons then never ran again just to prove that they hated running. So, running isn’t for everyone.

Soccer: The #1 sport of the Millennium! Ok maybe that’s an overreach, but I love this game! If you can get people together, this minimal equipment sport is an excellent puzzle, and requires great stamina. I once had a coach tell me that to play a soccer game effectively you should be able to sprint 9 miles. Bring it on!

Strength Training: Naturally you’ll gain strength in any sport, some more than others, but independent strength training in addition to your sport will help you excel in your sport to a most satisfying degree. Strength training isn’t to be emphasized for small children, as their training is focused on finding joy in the sport itself, and later with more maturity will they recognize a need for independent strength training if their passion for sports flowers. Be careful with taking protein supplements, God intended you to get them through eating foods they way they occur in nature. Taking too much protein is extremely detrimental to long term health, overly expediting the metabolism. Humans are not fragile, and are meant to be strong. This being said, even if we are eating healthfully, eating to the point that we build up ultra-massive muscles is seen as harmful to long term health by many physicians. Linebackers in football are the shortest lifespan career in the USA (part of that of course is due to their atrocious diet).

Sword Fencing: One of my favorites, what’s not to love about sword fencing? Brigham Young endorsed learning this sort of thing as well. Here are a few basics:

The sword fencing Piste (platform) is 2m wide & 14m long. Epee Foil and Saber are the three types. In Epee the target is the whole bod. Foil upper body no arms. Saber all upper body yes head. Typically, only the point of the sword scores a point, but in Saber one can hit with side of sword too.

Wrestling: We’ve highlighted this elsewhere, but Joseph Smith was great at wrestling (especially when he wrestled under the influence of the spirit of the Lord says Truman G Madsen, that when in this condition, he never lost a match!) Kids of course need to wrestle with their dad. This rough and tumble time is a great time to teach kids boundaries. They can learn how to interact physically without hurting one another. This is great bonding time, and is good clean fun.

 

 

 

Raising Concerns about Yoga

Sections:

POP CULTURE PUSHING YOGA

LETTING GO OF SELF CONTROL

OBSESSIVE-SELF-CARE / IDLNESS

YOGA SEEKS CONVERTS

KRISHNA TEMPLE PROMOTES YOGA

MIRACULOUS YOGA-RELATED HEALINGS

YOGA PROMOTES THE FALSE DOCTRINE OF MULTIPLE PATHS TO SALVATION

YOGA PROMOTES IMMODESTY

YOGA MAY INVOLVE SPIRITUAL MEDIUMS IN ITS POSES ETC

RESOURCES FOR ADDITIONAL STUDY

 

 

POP CULTURE PUSHING YOGA:

Why is Yoga pushed by celebrities & pop culture? It is a quite possibly a portal to manipulation by Satanic forces. Doing the opposite of what Hollywood Stars promote is a good rule of thumb.

Beware that Satan makes himself appear as an angel of light. He is a brilliant salesman! His counterfeits to truth are often accepted even by the very elect.

I’m not saying people who do yoga are going to hell. I’m saying eventually they’ll learn better ways (if the hypothesis that yoga is corrupt is a true hypothesis). It’s like when someone asked me if a saint who drinks coffee is going to hell- the answer is no, but it’s a dangerous path connected to rebellion (since we know it is forbidden), and rebellion can indeed disqualify someone from the higher blessings.

LETTING GO OF SELF CONTROL:

One of the biggest problems with yoga is that it encourages an Eastern form of meditation involving clearing the mind, letting go of ideas, giving control over to ‘the universe’ or ‘nature’, rather than retaining self-control.

You should never give away control of your body to anything or anyone. Even a latter-day prophet, Lee Grant or Taylor I think, said he would willingly serve God, but never be God’s slave. Brigham Young taught of the need to stand on your own and not blindly follow others.

In hypnotics the student gives his will away to someone else. This is not true for all mindfulness practitioners, some just relax and try to focus on breathing, but many take it to a whole other level, seeking spiritual manipulation. The parallels are worth considering.

Yoga may be a gateway drug to these higher forms of manipulation. Christian scripture passages suggesting meditation involve pondering ideas, not dismissing all ideas.

 

OBSESSIVE-SELF-CARE / IDLNESS:

Perhaps the Devil rejoices when he sees people investing so much time into something that matters so little. There seems to be a growing culture of obsessive-self-care, taking this far further than it needs to be.

Remember, deception doesn’t need to be evil to be effective. Further, this deception may not be as innocent as many were led to believe.

The yoga teacher sits as a god enthroned to her class showing off her body, her perfections and masteries. She often not only boasts skill in yoga, but wisdom in all philosophy. Perhaps she is ignorant to the potentially negative effects of her teachings.

 

YOGA SEEKS CONVERTS:

Before we discovered these truths about yoga, my wife was enrolled in yoga certification classes. She saw that they teach to seek after those who are at a low point in their lives to target them, as it is they who remain yoga students for life. This to us suggests that yoga is a religion seeking converts.

Upon learning about the questionable nature of yoga, my wife dropped the classes. She has found healthier alternatives in Pilates, simple stretching, walking, etc.

I believe Yoga becomes more than a healthy hobby, it becomes an all-encompassing way of life, often even replacing former religious convictions.

A Pew research study shows most stay in yoga for spiritual reasons despite starting for physical reasons (https://truthaboutyoga.com/spiritual-effects-of-practicing-yoga/).

What persuades to believe in Christ is good / good spirits, what persuades “believe not” in Christ (that’s how the Book of Mormon words it, which is instructive; they don’t have to pull you over to some other god to be evil, they just have to pull you away from Christ to be evil) is evil. And like I’ve pointed out, yoga often leads away from western Judeo-Christian culture & belief, and toward either agnosticism, atheism, or eastern religion.

KRISHNA TEMPLE PROMOTES YOGA:

When we visit the Krishna temple, we see their signs calling for diligent yoga. We saw many questionable things in the trainings, including instructions to call upon spirits to be of assistance.

The fact that they promote it isn’t in and of itself grounds to banish yoga, but it does further establish the link between yoga and Hinduism.

 

MIRACULOUS YOGA-RELATED HEALINGS:

Some say yoga really works, so why not use it? Remember the Devil can perform little miracles to get people’s souls.

When one does something bad in exchange for a blessing, it is called selling the soul to the devil.

Just because something works isn’t ample reason to do it.

 

YOGA PROMOTES THE FALSE DOCTRINE OF MULTIPLE PATHS TO SALVATION:

Die hard new age / yoga students are often committed to the idea that there are little bits of good everywhere, and that there isn’t one way to salvation/lasting peace, but many. This sort of pantheism strongly echoes the paganism of old condemned by the prophets in the bible.

It is very different from Jesus Christ’s declaration that he is the way, the truth, and the light, and that no man cometh to the father but by him. Christ declared that those who will not partake of his word will not enter the kingdom of God.

This goes back to the old ‘several camps in heaven’ idea (one campe for Adventists, another for Baptists, Methodists, Islam, Hindu, etc.) which is a false notion, inspired by the Devil. Baptism and faithful adherence to the councils of God are the requirements to enter the presence of God the Father of all.

 

 

YOGA PROMOTES IMMODESTY:

The pants they promote certainly cause one to question! It’s like Thomas Moore’s book Utopia about cannibals, at the end he says, ‘but you know the strangest thing about them, no one wore any pants!’ Moore was correct – people who call themselves civilized but do bizarre things like not clothing their bodies appropriately are anything but civilized.

Thought the yoga pants facilitate free movement, other uniforms could do this while accommodating modesty.

I suspect hidden agendas in the promotion of yoga pants. Many wear them everywhere. They are becoming a part of day to day culture rather than a fitness uniform.

The human body was never meant to be fully on display in day to day activities. It is sacred and deserves reverence.

 

YOGA MAY INVOLVE SPIRITUAL MEDIUMS IN ITS POSES ETC:

The poses themselves are supposedly each a worship to a different Hindu god or goddess.

The bible condemns the practice of communicating with the dead through mediums. Not all who practice yoga do this, but high level ones may.

Ancient Israel was absolutely forbidden from practicing anything that had to do with other gods.

Some are unaware of yoga being worship of Hindu gods. However, like how smoking hurts people even if they aren’t aware that it is hurting them, we can’t claim ignorance is bliss.

Even if gods of myth have basis in the True God, that doesn’t mean they should be worshipped.

Just because something appears spiritually uplifting doesn’t mean it is from a good spiritual source.

Few yoga practitioners are aware of the potentially dark side of their practice. Similar to Free Masons, most of them are good people, just unaware of evidence of satanic usurpation of their trade.

The Preach My Gospel manual warns against getting spiritual direction from the wrong source.

This article further demonstrates how each pose represents a prayer to a specific god: https://www.ekhartyoga.com/…/practice/6-sacred-yoga-poses

Certainly the Reiki Masters are taught to call on certain Hindu spirits for aid (What is Reiki? – Truth Behind Yoga).

 

MYSTICS VS PROPHETS

God’s ways are not the ways of the mystic. Read Nibley’s stuff on prophets vs mystics. The devil tries to get us sold into a gospel of mysteriousness, incomprehensibility, vagueness, and shifting morals.

Even psychotropic medications are ways the Devil takes over someone, see drugawareness.org.

The views of Yoga compared to biblical views are detailed nicely in this article: What Does the Bible Say? The Teachings of Yoga and the Bible are Antithetical. – Truth Behind Yoga

 

RESOURCES FOR ADDITIONAL STUDY:

-A short video on “Why Christians Should Avoid Yoga” by Doreen Virtue, a former New Age Master: https://youtu.be/3PkGIQNkJC8

-1.5 hour video featuring the story of the author of TruthBehindYoga.com https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=AkiNFjzJ6y4&feature=youtu.be

-See LDS Energy healing/emotion code exposed Facebook page/group.

Is yoga Spiritual? | Truth About Yoga

 

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