Sunday, March 21, 2010

I See... Being the Voice in Someone Else's Head

Traditionally, “hearing voices” is an activity reserved for the mentally disturbed. Most of both the real world of yellow journalism, and the surreal world of entertainment, pay too much attention to criminal voices in the heads of those directed to commit unspeakable acts without responsibility or consequence. Except for Kevin Costner being inexplicably instructed to build a baseball diamond in his cornfield, the voices recorded in our head have a pretty poor record.

I've decided to speak on behalf of the voices in our head. In fact, I aspire to be that voice in someone else's head someday (perhaps I already am...?) Why? Because practical experience reveals that most of the voices in the heads of those I roll with and respect, members of my LDS faith, are voices of hope, inspiration, and intelligent instruction that carry them through difficult times or direct them away imminent spiritual or temporal disaster.

No doubt that the dreams that came to pondering ancient prophets Joseph in Egypt and Lehi in Jerusalem would count as scriptural examples of righteous head voices. More recently, the prophet of my youth, President Kimball, taught that God answers our prayers through other people. If we truly believe prophets from all these eras, is it so hard to believe that the Holy Ghost, the purveyor of all revealed wisdom that works within our minds and hearts, would direct us towards truth or away from deception using the “voices” of others? The voices of those who have impressed us so much that we have retained their imprint in our mortal memories?

I have a teenage daughter, who, like many other teenage daughters, is prone to occasional pity parties, where she temporarily allows all the real and manufactured problems around her to overwhelm her. Remarkably, however, she is able to leave many of these parties without parental intervention. The way she explains it, she listens to the voice of Kari, a respected school counselor, which pops up in her mind at its lowest moment and dispenses the most completely appropriate advice for the specific circumstance, whether it be “stop being a victim!” or “boys are stupid!” etc.

I personally know of other LDS teenagers who have listened and obeyed similar voices in their heads. What an honor it would be to be that type of voice in the head of someone else in need!

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