Sunday, July 5, 2015

I See... What Makes America Great

The Fourth of July is the perfect time to discuss what makes America great. America is the greatest wealth-producing machine in the world. It exports 1.64 trillion dollars of cars, refined petroleum, planes, helicopters, spacecraft, pharmaceuticals, gas turbines, gold, soybeans, medical instruments, and integrated circuits yearly. Almost half of the world's millionaires found their fortunes here. However, what makes America the truly greatest country in the history of history is not what is has, but what it gives away. The US Constitution and the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, both made in America and exported abroad, have produced immeasurable amounts of spiritual wealth, and will continue to touch and bless the lives of countless of God's children in eons to come.
Our U.S. Constitution was the first of over 160+ constitutions currently in force today. If you're
a country today, you have a constitution. We have no way of verifying with any degree of certainty how many of these nations used the U.S. Constitution as an express blueprint for their own governance, but we do know that the genealogy of worldwide law to “insure the domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity” can be traced back to us. Article 1 in the Bill of Rights, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” served as the cradle for the Restoration and remains relevant today in current threads of discussion on religious freedom related to our right to maintain the doctrinal purity of marriage only as a union between a man and a woman in fulfillment of the great Plan of Happiness.

America guaranteed a properly fertilized population ready not only to receive the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, but also to export it to all of God's children spanning the globe. After the church was officially organized on a clear spring 6th of April 1830, what started in Canada with a fledgling effort of two missionaries now consumes the entire world. 85,000+ missionaries serve and teach in 188 languages in 155 countries. Just like the truly noble attributes of love, testimony, and faith, the benefits offered by the U.S. Constitution and the restoration of the Gospel are accrued only by sharing them. The U.S. Constitution and the Restored Gospel made America great, and exporting them will keep it that way.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

I See... Why We Shouldn't Be THAT Worried About the Recent Supreme Court Decision Legalizing Gay Marriage

On the surface, every outstanding Mormon treasuring a fundamental belief in the Great Plan of Happiness should be justifiably disturbed with the recent Supreme Court decision forcing all 50 United States to accept gay marriage as the law of the land. After all, His Great Plan of Happiness, aka the Plan of Salvation, grants the power of God to create life, procreation, only to men and women within the sacred bonds of marriage. God designed life and eternity to function according to this plan. Ironically, those who choose to act on same-sex desires via sexual union in committed relationships that they want to call “marriage” are taking advantage of one key element of the Plan, free choice, to essentially check themselves out of the Plan.

It is initially tempting to interpret this decision as fulfillment of the scriptural contract contained in Mosiah 29:27:

“And if the time comes that the voice of the people doth choose iniquity, then is the time that the judgments of God will come upon you; yea, then is the time he will visit you with great destruction even as he has hitherto visited this land.”

Read that first line very, very carefully. The Mormon Third Eye does not view the recent Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage as the “voice of the people.” As one dissenting justice described it, “it is the decision of five lawyers,” a slightly snide reference to the five Supreme Court judges who signed on to the majority opinion. Only 4.6% of United States citizens identify themselves as gay, and a majority of American still define marriage as the union of man and woman.

So, currently, I don't think we are worthy of the “great destruction” promised by Mosiah. Not yet- at least not on this sacred principle. Although a majority of Supreme Court judges have chosen iniquity, the American people have not. Given enough time and moral erosion, perhaps popular state and federal referendums would have redefined marriage in a similar fashion- but now we'll never know.  

Saturday, June 20, 2015

I See... Interpretation of Videos

The Mormon Third Eye has some sweet dream interpretation skills (you can read about them here). Now partially in alignment with Father's Day, we're going to tackle interpreting videos. Before you read further, watch this video first: this video

This is what the Mormon Third Eye sees:  I know that my Heavenly Father is wholly and completely devoted to my immortality and eternal life-  how devoted am I to my children?  I may get some inspirational phone calls today from my children thanking me for my service- how often do I thank my Heavenly Father?  Certainly He is worthy of my respect. love, and devotion- what have I done, or might continue to do, that warrants even a sliver of that treatment from my own children?

Am I asking too many questions of myself? Do I need to read Alma 5? (you can more about that here)

Sunday, June 14, 2015

I See...Multiplying and Replenishing the Earth

The core principle underpinning the sacred instruction to multiply and replenish the earth comes from revealled knowledge of the plan of salvation. Having children provides opportunities for spirits in the pre-earth life to participate in the plan of salvation; to obtain bodies, have their faith tested, and return to his presence with a perfect, resurrected body and a commitment to continue on the path to inherit all that He has. Practically, this translates into divine direction to have babies and raise as many children as circumstances permit. This is often broken down into more manageable components- do not postpone marriage and family, learn fundamental principles of child rearing, etc.

However, The Mormon Third Eye sees the beginning from the end, and contends that too often we overlook our “support crews” that make it more possible for us to keep this commandment. They make the world a better place to rear more children. I'm talkin' about:
  • Corporations and businesses that sell goods and services at prices and offer salaries and benefits at levels that encourage couples to have more children;
  • Primary, Sunday School, Young Men and Young Men, and especially Seminary teachers who emphasize both being good children and becoming good fathers and mothers;
  • Scientists and researchers who continually work towards miraculous discoveries for growing more food on less land, thereby increasing the Earth's capacity to house more humans. “The enemy of human happiness as well as the cause of poverty and starvation is not the birth of children,” said Elder Henry B. Eyring of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. “It is the failure of people to do with the earth what God could teach them to do if only they would ask and then obey.”

What about social workers promoting adoption services? Babysitters who give stressed parents a break from their busy anklebiters? The army of therapists and medical professionals that support families with special needs children? The school teachers, piano teachers, and tutors entrusted with educating our children? I submit they all are part of the scaffolding that builds and upholds our efforts to multiply and replenish the earth, and we all know that construction without scaffolding is too dangerous to even attempt.

This is how the Lord works. He includes everyone in bringing to pass His great works. What part will you play?

Sunday, June 7, 2015

I See... Redefining Marriage Again and Again and Again

(WARNING: I was warned by one close friend not to write this blogpost, which meant, of course, to the twelve year-old boy in me that I HAD to write it.) 

The Mormon Third Eye almost six years addressed attempted to redefine marriage when it came out in open support of material marriage- the policies and procedures support marriage to your favorite things.  It's time for an update.

There are two pivotal points on the current marriage definition spectrum.  On one end are those who believe in the divine directive that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God,  designed to accomplish his purposes.  On the other end are those who believe that marriage is a man-made institution, and hence should be modified to meet the needs of the age we live in- specifically, those in the same-sex attraction community who desire to establish committed relationships with their partner that include the type and depth of commitment that has been traditionally associated with heterosexual marriage covenants.  Most peoples' beliefs on this critical issue fall somewhere on the spectrum between the two pivots.  

The purpose of this post is not to expressly advocate one approach over another.  Although I personally oppose same-sex marriage on several levels, I respect and embrace someone's right to make that choice. If you are born on this earth, you were one of the privileged two-thirds of disembodied spirits in the pre-earth life who cast their support for Heavenly Father's plan that we would be free to choose between good and evil. Those who want to do wrong things must be allowed to make wrong choices.  Let's just leave it at that.

I can boil the current controversy over the definition of marriage to a “war of the words.”  Same-sex couples want to call what they have “marriage,” and judges in many states support this interpretation. However, traditional marriage supporters bristle at the legal rulings requiring them to share this term with the same-sex community. The Mormon Third Eye has creatively brainstormed three possible strategies to resolve this thorny issue. Which one do you think will work the best?  

First, traditional marriage supporters could create a new label for matrimony, a label so undesirable that  the same-sex community would have no desire to hijack it.  I'm thinking about something like “stinky armpit washing.” Heterosexual couples at BYU could be engaged to be S.A.W., (Stinky Armpit Washing). What same-sex couple would want to join hands in love and commitment and partake in “stinky armpit washing”vows?  The only obvious problem to this approach is that any term offensive enough to to turn off same-sex couples would be even more offensive to God- a huge drawback.

Second, the traditional marriage community could adopt a steady, rotating list of terms to describe marriage that could be changed every time one of them is borrowed by the same-sex community to describe their committed relationships.  These terms could be drawn from the over 500 documented invented languages in the world today (see in order to avoid unnecessary conflicts.  What's the Klingon word for marriage?

Third,  a man or woman who was sealed to each other for time and eternity in the House of the Lord could humble themselves before Him in personal, mighty prayer on a regular basis and seek a direct witness through the Holy Ghost that regardless of how man may define marriage, their marriage was indeed a divine, three-way covenant between their spouse and God, which could not be broken, altered, or marginalized. The obvious benefit to this approach is that when the spirit bears witness to the truthfulness of a gospel principle, nothing else matters.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

I See... Why We Leak

Everybody leaks. God made us this way. From burping to bawling, sneezing to snoring, and another broad collection of various unmentionable emissions, from cradle to grave we are constantly ostensibly involuntarily emitting with extreme prejudice an array of fluids, gases, and sounds. Our imperfectly telestial bodies are always uncontrollably leaking something. The burning question is not what, or where, but why? Why do we leak?

The Mormon Third Eye knows. It has already recently successfully related such distant concepts as cruising on the high seas, root beer, and dam stories to the gospel, but this discovery is by far the most creative. It all has to do with the plan of salvation.

When God created our spirit bodies from spirit matter, he made us big- really big. Then, via the violent yet beautiful process of birth, our really big spirits are crammed into itsy-bitsy tween-weeny baby bodies. We don't fit very well, so we start to leak and continue to do so until we die.

Image result for burpingEver wonder why babies cry so much? Well-meaning but misinformed modern mothers and doctors will trace it to some form of physical discomfort- a loaded diaper, an empty stomach, etc. Actually, MTE research confirms that it's merely overflow from a big spirit trapped in a small body that is creatively manifested in a uniquely physical way. As we grow older, our physical bodies enlarge but at a much slower rate than our spiritual bodies. The only release available for relief from this untenable situation are constant rounds of tears and burps and sneezes.

When you have consumed a particularly satisfying meal, your physical body can't handle the amount of joy your spirit feels, and it leaks out as a burp. When I'm in a sealing room in the Salt Lake Temple watching my oldest son make sacred covenants with the Lord and his fiancee, my spirit soars and my body can't handle the resulting “soul pressure,” so tears leak out. The same thing happens when my daughter thanks me for being her dad. Sneezes are nothing more than our spirits struggling to express the happiness we feel over pollen-laden natural wonders God has created for our enjoyment. Snoring is merely a manifestation of a good dream too terrific to be trapped inside a resting body.

So, the next time you are spending quality time with a loved one, and they innocently trip the sensors at the National Earthquake Center with a booming belch, pull them close and respond with a tender, 'I love you too.”  

Sunday, May 24, 2015

I See... The Temple of the Seas

The Mormon Third Eye has adopted some awfully alternative perspectives on standard LDS culture, from strategies involving threats to murder cute puppies to increase attendance at ward parties, to officially marrying your favorite foods.

However, from inside the mind of the Mormon Third Eye comes the most bold, innovative, and unconventional scenario ever imagined (so far!). When the MTE mashes together half-baked memories associated with temple service + a one-week cruise to the Bahamas + the essential nature of temple ordinances + the Israelites' traveling temple in 40 years of wilderness + righteous desires to make temples more accessible to more saints, + the wealth of the church invested in capital projects designed to bring members closer to Christ + the curse that shortly and surely smite the earth if we don't get going in our family history, it produces a fully-baked coordinated plan to to turn a cruise ship into a seafaring temple!

Image result for cruise ship

Think of the possibilities! I see:

  • a completely redesigned mid-sized oceanliner gutted and outfitted with double-hulled meticulously constructed temple facilities;
  • self-sufficient floating temple facilities with modest food and sleeping accommodations for temple workers, leadership, support staff, and even patrons;
  • glistening, elegantly appointed ship with temple spires replacing upper deck outdoor pools cruising to remote corners of the world, with worthy members flocking to the docks clamoring for the rare opportunity to perform temple ordinances for themselves and their ancestors;
  • nightly broadway shows replaced with inspiring choir performances and polished pageant productions brilliantly recreating the introduction of the gospel in the country next on the itinerary;
  • hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of temple patrons dressed in their Sunday best dramatically lining the bow with a bold ocean breeze caressing their bright visages, watching a stirring sunset with hearts overflowing with gratitude for God's creations and the Plan of Salvation. 

We have been able to spread the gospel to the unwashed masses globally via the Internet; is their a better way to bring more temple ordinances closer to more people?

Of course, there are some technicalities to work out. First we would need direct revelation to the prophet in one of the upper rooms of the Salt Lake temple. This would authorize the church to spend hundreds of millions of dollars in opening a maritime temple division of the Temple department and spearheading the purchase and transformation of a worthy vessel into a floating house of the Lord. You would need to call a full time Temple President and temple workers as well ship support staff and a brand new calling “Ship Captain.”

We would also have to account for the well-known doctrinal dilemma revealed in D&C 61:18-19, where Lord warns the saints through Joseph Smith of dangers on the waters:

18 And now I give unto you a commandment that what I say unto one I say unto all, that you shall forewarn your brethren concerning these waters, that they come not in journeying upon them, lest their faith fail and they are caught in snares;
19 I, the Lord, have decreed, and the destroyer rideth upon the face thereof, and I revoke not the decree.”

He prefaces this, however, with prophecy on who can safely navigate destroyer-infested waters:

15 Wherefore, the days will come that no flesh shall be safe upon the waters.
16 And it shall be said in days to come that none is able to go up to the land of Zion upon the waters, but he that is upright in heart.”

I say we take it to the devil where he lives- on the high seas! What would irritate him more than a couple of thousand of righteous temple recommend holders completing temple ordinances for the disembodied spirits he has trapped in Spirit Prison! Who's with me! Join me!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

I See... the Dam(n) Truth

(WARNING: there is a select term in this blogpost which sounds like a cussword, but it's really not because I'm not using it that way.)

Several years ago I took some nieces and nephews on a dam trip. We toured the Hoover dam complex and learned about the history of it's construction. It was a great dam story. At the end of the day, we had forged some precious dam memories.

Since that dam experience I have relished recounting several engaging stories of that dam visit voicing the word “dam” in carefully constructed contexts, allowing me to sound like I'm cussing without actually cussing. My wife thinks it is infantile; a sister-in-law giggles wildly; and everyone else who knows me is somewhat intrigued witnessing a good Mormon boy using such coarse language so recklessly.
Nevertheless, I have struggled for almost eight years now to find a legitimate, inspiring reason to include my dam story in an approved doctrinal context worthy of a MTE dam blogpost. Impossible, you say? I think not. Read on, for the Mormon Third Eye specializes in the impossible. I learned the truth about damnation, the damn truth, in Seminary.

In our study of the Doctrine and Covenants, we ran across several seemingly harsh promises of damnation for those who do not accept the saving ordinances of the gospel: “And he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, and he that believeth not shall be damned (D&C 68:9).” In terms of our potential for eternal progression in the highest order of the Celestial Kingdom, “damnation” or “to be damned” means to have our progression stopped-we loose the opportunity for eternal increase. Just like a dam stops the progress of flowing water, our failure to accept the saving ordinances of the gospel stops our progress in this life and the next, and we become “damned.”
Image result for hoover dam
The damn truth is that many of us dam the teachings of the gospel of Jesus Christ and potential for unlimited happiness behind huge concrete walls of pride, disobedience, anger, and all varieties of addiction, and in the course of our own personal dam construction damn our own souls now and in the next life- eternal damnation.

I think this is the best dam blogpost I've ever written. Regular MTE readers, what do you think?

Saturday, May 9, 2015

I See... What Mothers Want

After 55+ years of thorough experiential on-the-ground research and evaluation, the Mormon Third Eye can confidently announce that it knows what mothers want on Mother's Day. The results are almost shocking; how did we get it wrong for so many years?

When I was young, the bishop would have the ward thank mothers by having them stand up during sacrament meeting and be recognized in order according to how many kids they had birthed, with the smallest families first. I was one of seven so my mom was usually one of the last to sit down . How would that play in today's meetings? Times have definitely changed.

Mothers do not wish to be worshiped as domestic goddesses; they are innately aware that they, like every other son and daughter of God, fall short of the glory of God. Characterizations of what the perfect mother should be only traps them in a prison of their own guilt of what they aren't doing, or if they are doing it, they're not doing well enough.

Mothers are not seeking perfection through their own works. All they want is to be loved. Why? Because new discoveries on doctrines of motherhood depicted in the scriptures reveal that they are really charity- the pure love of Christ.

Try exchanging the word “charity” with “mother” in the following famous scriptures:

1st Corinthians 13:
1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not mother, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not mother, I am nothing.
3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not mother, it profiteth me nothing.
4 mother suffereth long, and is kind; mother envieth not; mother vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
8 mother never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I44-46 know even as also I am known.
13 And now abideth faith, hope, mother, these three; but the greatest of these is mother.

Moroni 7:44, 47:
44 If so, his faith and hope is vain, for none is acceptable before God, save the meek and lowly in heart; and if a man be meek and lowly in heart, and confesses by the power of the Holy Ghost that Jesus is the Christ, he must needs have mother; for if he have not mother he is nothing; wherefore he must needs have mother.
47 But mother is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him.

These scriptures, appropriately modified, absolutely exactly describe mothers across the millennium of time. It's like they're talking about my own mom! So... to celebrate Mother's Day, why don't you show a mother some charity? I'm certain she'll recognize and embrace it. For her, it should be like looking into a mirror.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

I See... Saving the World

Rarely does the Mormon Third Eye tackle a topic as taxing as saving the world. If you can't save the world, what else matters?

Just last Friday afternoon I was one of the millions of minions in North America who flocked to theaters across the country to be entertained and inspired by the new superhero blockbuster “The Avengers: the Age of Ultron.” Eight superheroes with various wonderful powers fought off the essence of evil to save the world from total annihilation. The movie had it's desired effect on me. I left the theater excited, inspired, and motivated; I wanted to save the world.

But how? Unfortunately, on the way home reality sunk in. In the sprawling mass of clogged left-hand turn lanes, pollen-laden air attacking my sinuses, and practical discussions on how much time we would spend tomorrow battling evil weeds in the back yard, I realized that the world that had just been saved was just fiction emanating from the clever minds of writers, directors, and actors. The world I lived in had real challenges with evil and needed to be saved too, but without the fabricated superpowers exercised in the movie. Even as a human I was pretty weak in the superpower/talent department. I don't possess any of the traditional athletic, musical, or entrepreneurial talents that most of humanity looks up to; I've been focusing mostly on keeping promises and making good decisions. What could I do?

It was then I reached into my wallet for my secret weapon- a secret weapon the none of the Avengers possessed, yet had the potential to bestow upon even puny mortals power to save worlds past, present and future. I pulled out my Temple Recommend.
I use my temple recommend to serve as a volunteer temple worker every first and third Saturday mornings. The prophet Joseph Smith taught that “these are principles in relation to the dead and the living that cannot be lightly passed over, as pertaining to our salvation. For their salvation is necessary and essential to our salvation, as Paul says concerning the fathers—that they without us cannot be made perfect—neither can we without our dead be made perfect.” The work I do in the temple and the life I must lead to remain worthy of a recommend makes me a willing and active participant in saving those who have gone before me, those currently with me, and those who will come after me.

I spent the morning after viewing the amazing Avengers movie in the temple saving mankind by administering saving ordinances for my kindred dead. I left the temple excited, inspired, and motivated save mankind in the real world with the power and authority of God.

It doesn't get any more “super” than that!