Question: Can spiritual experiences be simply willed to reality?

FairMormon Answers Wiki Table of Contents

Question: Can spiritual experiences be simply willed to reality?

The claim is contradicted by the lived experiences of many, many people.

Some secularist critics of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints make claims that mean to persuade people that spiritual experiences are simply willed to fruition and are thus ultimately meaningless. The claim is contradicted by the lived experiences of many, many people. Many members of the Church and even more likely those that have served missions will know of investigators or other members they know/knew that don’t/didn’t receive a spiritual experience that confirms/ed the truth of the Book of Mormon or the Church to them even after years of praying. Additionally, spiritual experiences such as burnings have been kept from people to the point that they have a faith crisis. Take, for example, the experience of famous Latter-day Saint musician Michael McClean:

Thus, claims that spiritual experiences are simply willed to fruition or are deterministic are fundamentally misinformed about the nature of spiritual experience.