Monday, May 4, 2009

Elder Bednar ROCKS!

I listened to his talk from the CES fireside last night and LOVED IT! Here are some of my favorite points...
  • the great principle of happiness consists in having a body
  • the body and the spirit together constitute our reality and identity
  • when the body and spirit are together we can experience a fullness of joy; when they are separated we cannot
  • the adversary's method of attack is to get us both to misuse and minimize our bodies
  • one of the ways we misuse our bodies is by worshipping the false idol of body language
  • he spent most of the talk giving examples of how we minimize our bodies, which is the most subtle and diabolical of Satan's attacks
  • sometimes we neglect eternal relationships for digital distractions that have no lasting value
  • he talked about mind and spirit-numbing online games, and then argued that video-gaming and computer-mediated communication can minimize the importance of our physical bodies
  • technology can be used to replicate reality, augment reality, and create virtual reality
  • a high degree of fidelity (or similarity between reality and a representation of reality) contributes to the effectiveness of the technological experience
  • this simulation can be constructive if the fidelity is high and the purposes of the technology is good
  • the simulation or model can lead to spiritual impairment and danger if the fidelity is high and the purposes are bad
  • he raised an apostolic voice of warning (that was a "hey there, wake up and pay attention all of you who got lost during the fidelity bit) of the impact of some types of cyberspace interactions on our souls
  • the adversary can disconnect us gradually and physically from things as they really are
  • he encourages us to think and act as if we were in our premortal, unembodied state
  • here's an exact quote: "Please be careful of becoming so immersed and engrossed in pixels, texting, earbugs, twittering, online social networking and potentially addicting uses of 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-related interaction that can displace the full range of physical attraction and experience"
  • another quote: "Now brothers and sisters, please understand, I am not suggesting all technology is bad - it is not. Nor am I saying we should not use it's many capabilities in appropriate ways to learn, to communicate, to lift and brighten lives, and to build the church - of course we should. But I am raising a warning voice that we should not squander and damage authentic relationships by obsessing over contrived ones."
  • another one: "Lucifer will encourage you to misuse and to minimize the importance of your physical body. He will attempt to substitute the monotony of virtual repitition for the infinite variety of God's creations and convince us we are merely mortal things to be acted upon, instead of eternal souls blessed with moral agency to act for ourselves. Deviously he entices embodied spirits to forfeit the blessings and learning experiences according to the flesh that are made possible through the Father's plan of happiness and the Atonement of the Only Begotten Son."
  • one more: "Initially the investment of time may seem relatively harmless - rationalized as a few minutes of needed relief from a hectic daily schedule. But important opportunities are missed for developing interpersonal skills, for laughing and crying together, and for creating a rich, enduring bond of emotional intimacy. Progressively, seemingly innocent entertainment can become a form of pernicious enslavement. To feel the warmth of a hug from an eternal companion, or to see the sincerity in the eyes of another person as testimony is shared - all of theses things experienced as they really are, through the instrument of our physical body, could be sacrificed for a high-fidelity fantasy that has no lasting value. If you and I are not vigilant, we could become past feeling, as Laman and Lemuel did, long ago."
  • Towards the end he asked 2 questions: 1. Does the use of various technologies and media invite or impede the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost in your life?" 2. Does the time you spend using various technologies and media enlarge or restrict your capacity to live, to love, and to serve in meaningful ways?

This was a powerful talk. I felt the truth of what he was speaking about so deeply. What a timely message for the times we live in!!


Tiffany said...

Thanks for sharing Kathryn! That is amazing...I guess I never thought to make the connection between the two, but it makes perfect sense! I'd like to go back and listen to it too...