Monday, May 30, 2011


Bishop G. made a recommendation to me as we work towards full temple worthiness and mission preparation.  He suggested I go to the temple, touch the walls, and dwell on the grounds for awhile to enjoy the spirit of the area.  Being as that I slept through my alarm and all three blocks of church, I figured I should go to the temple today.

It wasn't a wild, epiphanic experience wherein all of my concerns and misgivings about the Gospel were addressed, nor was it a hugely spiritual experience leaving me in tears of gratitude, but nonetheless, it was a good thing to do.  It was windy and cold today, but the sun was shining and it bounced off the temple walls, bathing the grounds in soft, white light from the temple and bright, yellow light from Helios.  There are all kinds of metaphors there that I don't feel like drawing, but nonetheless, the temple is a beautiful place to sit and think.

I believe that religion is mostly mental.  I think that in general, you don't necessarily need ritual displays of devotion to be a religious person.  I do have a testimony of the ordinances of the Gospel, but still, I feel like pondering on the nature of the Gospel is where I receive the most strength, not in taking the sacrament.

Even so, I have faith in those rituals.  When my bishop recommended I spend time in the shadows of the temple and touch its walls, part of me scoffed a little bit.  Could mere physical proximity help me feel the Spirit?  But mostly, I believed his words.  I believed that by touching the temple, I could feel of its power and its spirit could flow into me a little.

It's the same principle from the New Testament so faithfully exemplified by the woman in the marketplace.

"For she said, if I may but touch his  clothes, I shall be made whole."
Mark 5:28

I still believe that thoughtful meditation is still the primary conduit to personal revelation and truth, but I also know that those physical manifestations of our faith, even beyond our righteous actions, also have power to save and transform us, as they did the woman in the marketplace.  

So even though I didn't feel that shock of transformation when I touched the temple walls, I still plan on making temple "attendance" a regular part of my life.  I'm looking forward to seeing what happens as I do.

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