No striving with supreme powers.
—Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy (1638/1651)
(This is the grimmer lesson to be gleaned from today’s introduction of the 17th President & and the new First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Spenser W. Kimball, 12th President, explains:
There have been some eighty apostles so endowed since Joseph Smith, though only eleven have occupied the place of the President of the Church, death having intervened; and since the death of his servants is in the power and control of the Lord, he permits to come to the first place only the one who is destined to take that leadership. Death and life become the controlling factors.
—Spencer W. Kimball, “We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet” (6 October 1972)
[My emphasis.] The succession of LDS leadership is Darwinian; death—natural process & index from the Outside—is the selection mechanism.)
There are no coincidences.
—Thomas S. Monson; qtd. in Heidi S. Swinton, “Have I Done Any Good in the World Today?” Ensign (March 2012)
(Study this carefully.)
Agency and intelligence are the same thing.
—@rec0nciler, , (20 July 2017)
[h/t @Outsideness. That tweet disappeared as I was making this post. Most Mormons, given our religion’s emphasis on agency & intelligence, would recognize this identity as expressing a very deep insight. A Mormon better drilled in our orthodoxy than I would be able to refine the overlap between the two through scriptural exegesis, probably citing these two verses somewhere along the way, but I am not that Mormon. I’ll just point—👇—to this sentence’s alphanumeric sum.]
Yes, we have the principle that we look for the best everywhere, that we look for the good and keep the best.
—Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “My Timely 30-Year-Old Interview,” lds.org (21 June 2017)
(This was President Uchtdorf‘s response, on a German talk show in 1987, to the question of whether Mormons, with their restrictions on alcohol, cigarettes, coffee & tea, go to the theater and movies. It is not often that the aesthetic imperatives of Mormonism—to seek after anything virtuous, lovely [i.e., the beautiful], or of good report or praiseworthy—are communicated to non-members. It’s also Mormonism’s least controversial point; even MormonismDisproved won’t argue with the 13th Article of Faith.)
On the trail of Mormon qabbalism (this, not this), or perhaps on the edge of it’s abyss. Either way, it is an occulted thing (MORMON QABBALISM = 299 = ABYSMAL DARKNESS) that rarely emerges from the brume. But sometimes it does:
I am profoundly grateful for the law of tithing. … It is so simple and straightforward. It consists of 35 words set forth in section 119 of the Doctrine and Covenants. What a contrast with the cumbersome, complex, and difficult tax codes with which we live as citizens.
—Gordon B. Hinckley, “Of Missions, Temples, and Stewardship,” General Conference, October 1995, Priesthood Session. (my emphasis)
In case you, gentle reader, think I’m making more of this than there is, consider two injunctions from Doctor Faustus, to whom Mormon qabbalism is joined (MORMON QABBALISM = 299 = DOCTOR FAUSTUS): “These are but shadows, not substantial” & “Be silent then, for danger is in words.”