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Question: How do members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints view the concepts of spiritual experience and the obtainment of testimony?
- 1 Question: How do members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints view the concepts of spiritual experience and the obtainment of testimony?
- 1.1 Introduction
- 1.2 The Latter-day Saint Conception of the Holy Spirit
- 1.3 Conversion by the Power of the Holy Ghost
- 1.4 The Latter-day Saint Conception of the Soul
- 1.5 The Latter-day Saint Conception of the Holy Ghost, False Spirits, and Light
- 1.6 Stewardship in Latter-day Saint Epistemology
- 1.7 Personal Revelation
- 1.8 Process for Receiving Personal Revelation
- 1.9 Effects of the Holy Spirit
- 1.10 Effects of False Spirits, False Angels, and the Devil.
- 1.11 Dynamic Influence verses Passive Influence
- 1.12 The Holy Ghost in Relation to Other Faiths in Latter-day Saint Thought
- 2 Notes
Question: How do members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints view the concepts of spiritual experience and the obtainment of testimony?
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As part of their epistemology, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that commitment and belief in the Church and/or its doctrines may be established through spiritual experience. This is known as having with an experience with the Holy Ghost or "Holy Spirit" (Moroni 10:3-5).
This article introduces how Latter-day Saints conceptualize the Holy Spirit as it relates to experiencing it and how Latter-day Saints conceptualize the obtainment of testimony.
The Latter-day Saint Conception of the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is considered the third member of the Godhead (referred to in mainline Christianity as the Trinity). The Father and the Son have a body of flesh and bone but the Holy Spirit does not. He can, however, appear in the form of a man (Luke 3:16-17; 1 Nephi 11:11; Doctrine and Covenants 130:22). The Holy Ghost works through something called the Light of Christ. Since God is considered corporeal and thus has matter, he is widely considered to exist within space and time. This has brought up questions as to how he can be omnipresent (present everywhere at once). This is accomplished through the The Light of Christ. It is understood to be the indwelling presence that God holds with all things because it lives in all things (Doctrine and Covenants 88:6-13). Through the Light of Christ, the Holy Ghost and angels of God (both in unity with the intents of God and Christ: 2 Nephi 31:21; Alma 11:44;) communicate to mankind (2 Nephi 32: 1-2; Doctrine and Covenants 84:46).
Conversion by the Power of the Holy Ghost
The Holy Ghost is central to conversion in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
President M. Russell Ballard, an apostle and president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, wrote:
True conversion comes through the power of the Spirit. When the Spirit touches the heart, hearts are changed. When individuals … feel the Spirit working with them, or when they see the evidence of the Lord’s love and mercy in their lives, they are edified and strengthened spiritually and their faith in Him increases. These experiences with the Spirit follow naturally when a person is willing to experiment upon the word. This is how we come to feel the gospel is true
In the Book of Mormon, the prophet Moroni teaches that one may come to learn of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon by reading the book, pondering its message in our minds, and praying about the book with a sincere heart, real intent, and having faith in Jesus Christ:
- 3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.
- 4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
- 5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.
Praying about the Book of Mormon thus brings one a testimony or conviction of the Church since the Book of Mormon encompasses several propositions relating to the truthfulness of the Church including God being sovereign over the whole earth (1 Nephi 11:6), God creating the earth (2 Nephi 2:13), God having a body of flesh and bone (3 Nephi 28:10; D&C 93:33-35), the prophecy from the Book of Mormon of Joseph Smith being the one to bring it forth implying his prophethood and calling from God (2 Nephi 3:14-15),and the existence of the priesthood and its necessity in knowing how to find salvation in Christ through ordinances (Alma 13). Thus when one "knows" that the Book of Mormon is true, one "knows" that Joseph Smith is a prophet since he claimed to translate the Book of Mormon by the gift and power of God. If Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, this strongly implies that God exists. If God exists and he called Joseph Smith to translate the Book of Mormon, then it follows that the priesthood is real since the Book of Mormon is true and that that priesthood is on the earth today. That priesthood (the power and authority to act in God's name with his authorization) is claimed to reside only in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
This "knowing" is not a type of "knowing" in the philosophically empirical sense but rather a deep, perhaps intuitive sense of the higher truth present in the Book of Mormon.
Latter-day Saint philosopher and theologian Blake T. Ostler explained:
There is a vast difference between the way the Hebrews felt we come to knowledge of truth and the way the Greeks thought of it. Whereas the Hebrews and early Christian writers of scripture constantly refer to the heart as an instrument of knowledge and choice, the philosophers rarely, if ever, do. The Hebrew scriptures and the New Testament regard the heart as the source of knowledge and authentic being. For the Greeks, the head is the place of knowing everything we know.
[. . .]
The head is a piece of complex flesh that knows only a beginning and ending. By "head" I mean that complex system that includes our brain and central nervous system, which translates sense experience and gives rise to the categories of logic, language, and thought. It knows only what can be learned through the sense of our bodies and categories of reason. The head is the source of the ego—or the categories by which we judge ourselves and create or self image.In contrast, the heart is the home of our eternal identity. It can be opened or shut, hard or soft...The heart must be "penetrated" (D&C 1:2), "pricked" (Acts 2:37), "melted" (Josh. 2:11), or "softened" (D&C 121:4) so that truth is known, pretense is given up and humility in God's presence can be manifested.
Once one receives this witness of the Holy Ghost, one is motivated to make covenants with God to progress towards salvation and exaltation. Ordinances such as baptism and confirmation are signs of the covenants that one has made with God.
It is understood that one does not receive the witness of the Spirit confirming the truth of the Book of Mormon unless they walk up to the requirements as specified in Moroni 10:3-5 quoted above and become clean through repentance so that they can receive the Holy Ghost. It is understood that the Holy Ghost does not manifest itself to people who deliberately sin or go against what they believe God has commanded ( Alma 7:21; Helaman 4:24). Emphasis on deliberately go against what they believe God has commanded. If a person does not know what God has commanded then they remain without sin (Alma 29:5). This emphasis on repentance, along with the reception of the Holy Ghost for illumination, is central to conversion (Moroni 6:1-2).
The Latter-day Saint Conception of the Soul
It is important to understand how these sensations/revelations given by the Spirit are felt. Latter-day Saints believe that the body and spirit are connected as one in a form of substance monism. This union between body and spirit is denominated the soul (D&C 88:15). The body is a separate entity from the spirit, as the spirit can live independently of the body (Ether 3:16); yet when the spirit and body are connected, they are intimately and intricately intertwined and can act upon one another. Thus, whenever we do something with our bodies, it affects our spirits. Whenever something occurs in our spirit, it can affect our bodies. It may be said that, at times (perhaps when the Spirit moves upon us), they can react to each other.
All spiritual entities are known to be material instead of immaterial (D&C 131:7). Thus they're able to interact with material objects such as our bodies.
This is in contrast to the rest of mainstream Christianity that sees the spirit as immaterial and the body as material—the spirit being the life and intelligence of the body in what is known as mind-body dualism.
The Latter-day Saint Conception of the Holy Ghost, False Spirits, and Light
Latter-day Saint theology teaches that there is a spectrum of light (synonymous with "truth" in this context) that one can receive in this life that comes from God. This light is known in Latter-day Saint vernacular as “The Light of Christ” (Moroni 7:16; D&C 84:46). When one receives more of God’s truth, one receives more light (D&C 50:24; D&C 84:45). When one rejects light, is persuaded towards rejecting the truth that one has already received, or one deliberately chooses to remain without the light that God has revealed, one stays away or moves away from light. This is seen as sinful. The Holy Ghost is seen as the one that moves God’s children further and further into the light (D&C 84:47). The Holy Ghost works through the Light of Christ given to all people (Moroni 7:16; D&C 84:45-46). Since the Light of Christ is understood to give life and life to all things (D&C 88: 11-13), it follows that the Spirit can work on our spirit and/or our body through that Light in order to produce sensations. The Holy Ghost works in unity with God, whom Latter-day Saints believe to be of their same species—a corporeal human being with a glorified body (3 Nephi 28:10; D&C 130:22). Satan, and many false spirits and false angels under his control (Moroni 7:17; Doctrine and Covenants 50:1-3), are seen as those beings that move God’s children further and further into the darkness. As one receives more light, one is more receptive to receiving additional light and is seen as more sensitive to the Holy Ghost and the truth that God has revealed through prophets. As one moves away from the light, they are less and less able to perceive light. The ability to perceive light can ultimately be quenched (1 Nephi 17:45). As Elder David A. Bednar, an apostle in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has taught:
As we yield to that influence, to do good and become good, then the Light of Christ increases within us. As we disobey, light is decreased and can ultimately be diminished within us.
Thus these spirits are acting on both our body and our spirit, connected together intimately (called the “soul” in Latter-day Saint theology), to persuade us to accept, reject, or stay indifferent to light and truth. Since God is assumed to be the same species as humans, it follows that he will know how to stimulate our beings in such a way as to produce a spiritual reaction. When these spirits act on us, they produce physically felt sensations. Latter-day Saints believe that all human beings have the ability to perceive that which is of God from that which is of the devil (Moroni 7:14; see also D&C 8:2) through the same power given by the Light of Christ. It is generally believed that what God has revealed to prophets is good and will inspire one to love God and serve him (Moroni 7:20-25; Joseph Smith – Matthew 1:37).
Stewardship in Latter-day Saint Epistemology
Establishment of Official Doctrine
Latter-day Saints believe that the President of the Church is a prophet, seer, and revelator. As part of the calling as President, only that president may receive revelation on behalf of the entire Church. This is a doctrine laid out in the Doctrine and Covenants, a collection of revelations of the Presidents of the Church that forms part of the Church's official canon (Doctrine and Covenants 28:2). The Prophet of the Church, if he receives a revelation that he believes is on behalf of the entire church, will have to approve of that revelation with the other members of The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (Doctrine and Covenants 107:27). The President of the Church, along with the other members of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve, will present that revelation to the general body of the Church for ratification (Doctrine and Covenants 28:13). These revelations are usually canonized but sometimes aren't. These revelations govern the Church (Doctrine and Covenants 42:56-59).
Latter-day Saints are promised that personal revelation may accompany their reception of new doctrines.
President Brigham Young taught:
Some may say, "Brethren, you who lead the Church, we have all confidence in you, we are not in the least afraid but what everything will go right under your superintendence; all the business matters will be transacted right; and if brother Brigham is satisfied with it, I am." I do not wish any Latter-day Saint in this world, nor in heaven, to be satisfied with anything I do, unless the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, the spirit of revelation, makes them satisfied. I wish them to know for themselves and understand for themselves, for this would strengthen the faith that is within them. Suppose that the people were heedless, that they manifested no concern with regard to the things of the kingdom of God, but threw the whole burden upon the leaders of the people, saying, "If the brethren who take charge of matters are satisfied, we are," this is not pleasing in the sight of the Lord.Every man and woman in this kingdom ought to be satisfied with what we do, but they never should be satisfied without asking the Father, in the name of Jesus Christ, whether what we do is right.
This does not mean that Latter-day Saints must simply follow their own revelation when dealing with the prophets words. Latter-day Saints are commanded to follow the prophet as they believe he receives revelation from God and Jesus Christ to guide the affairs of the Church and the lives of the entire human family on the earth (Doctrine and Covenants 1:37; 112:10;)
Revelation and Stewardship
These concepts apply to other callings of the Church. It is understood that no one will receive revelation outside of their own stewardship (Doctrine and Covenants 70: 1-10). This means that a person called as a Primary leader will not receive revelation as to how the calling of bishop should be performed. Claims of reception of revelation outside of one's stewardship are regarded as the influence of false spirits, angels, and/or the devil, the wishful thinking of the person claiming to receive it, or the confusion of emotion for the revelation of the Spirit. Since Latter-day Saints consider the spirit and body to be connected intimately and intricately as the soul, it is easy for them to understand that a heart murmur or just warmth can be over-interpreted as the influence of the Holy Ghost.
Revelation to Guide One's Life
As a part of a person's being part of the Church, they will frequently hear the encouragement of Church leaders to receive personal revelation to guide their own lives.
President Russell M. Nelson, the current president of the Church taught:
I urge you to stretch beyond your current spiritual ability to receive personal revelation, for the Lord has promised that “if thou shalt [seek], thou shalt receive revelation upon revelation, knowledge upon knowledge, that thou mayest know the mysteries and peaceable things—that which bringeth joy, that which bringeth life eternal.”
Oh, there is so much more that your Father in Heaven wants you to know. As Elder Neal A. Maxwell taught, “To those who have eyes to see and ears to hear, it is clear that the Father and the Son are giving away the secrets of the universe!”
Nothing opens the heavens quite like the combination of increased purity, exact obedience, earnest seeking, daily feasting on the words of Christ in the Book of Mormon, and regular time committed to temple and family history work.To be sure, there may be times when you feel as though the heavens are closed. But I promise that as you continue to be obedient, expressing gratitude for every blessing the Lord gives you, and as you patiently honor the Lord’s timetable, you will be given the knowledge and understanding you seek. Every blessing the Lord has for you—even miracles—will follow. That is what personal revelation will do for you.
Doctrine and Covenants 121:33 teaches:
- 33 How long can rolling waters remain impure? What power shall stay the heavens? As well might man stretch forth his puny arm to stop the Missouri river in its decreed course, or to turn it up stream, as to hinder the Almighty from pouring down knowledge from heaven upon the heads of the Latter-day Saints. (emphasis added)
The understanding given by revelation may come little by little. Or, as Latter-day Saints like to refer to it, "line upon line, precept upon precept. Here a little and there a little (Isaiah 28:10, 13; 2 Nephi 28:30; Doctrine and Covenants 128:21).
Process for Receiving Personal Revelation
The process for receiving personal revelation is described in scripture.
Process to Undertake Before Receiving Personal Revelation
To receive personal revelation, a person is supposed to make themselves clean through repentance first as explained above. This so that the person can have greater potential access to God's power and limit influence by false spirits.
Top Down and Bottom Up Revelation
Latter-day Saint scripture affirms the reception of spiritual experiences as revelation in two different ways:
- Top Down Revelation is personal revelation that comes from God to us. However, in this instance, it is God who corrects our mental frame of mind to bring us certain knowledge. Examples of this are impressions that Latter-day Saints might report to keep them from danger, the revelation of special details that Latter-day Saints report during the giving of priesthood blessings, and so forth. These are instances where God is doing most of the work in the revelation.
- Bottom Up Revelation is revelation in which the agent seeking revelation studies an issue out in their mind first and then brings it to God for confirmation (Doctrine and Covenants 9:7-9). This is a type of personal revelation where the agent seeking it has to do most of the work. God confirms the validity of what they have concluded and the person proceeds according to the impression that is given to him as a confirmation of his reasoning.
Effects of the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is known to affect people in different ways. Preach My Gospel, the Church's instruction manual for prospective missionaries, lists many of these supposed effects. The chart produced there will be reproduced here a long with other effects of the Spirit noted by the author from his own study of the Latter-day Saint canon.
|Effect of Spirit||Scriptural examples|
|Gives feelings of love, joy, peace, patience, meekness, gentleness, faith, and hope.||Doctrine and Covenants 6:23; 11:12–14; Romans 15:13; Galatians 5:22–23|
|Softens one's heart to the idea of the God, Christ, and/or the Restoration||Alma 16:16-17|
|Inspires one to love and serve God||2 Nephi 31:18; Moroni 7:13; Doctrine and Covenants 20:27; Doctrine and Covenants 84:47; John 16:14|
|Inspires one to believe in Christ||2 Nephi 31:18; Moroni 7:13; Doctrine and Covenants 20:27; Doctrine and Covenants 84:47; John 16:14|
|Gives ideas in the mind, feelings in the heart.||Doctrine and Covenants 8:2–3|
|Occupies the mind and presses on the feelings.||Doctrine and Covenants 128:1|
|Helps scriptures have strong effect.||Joseph Smith—History 1:11–12|
|Gives good feelings to teach if something is true.||Doctrine and Covenants 9:8–9|
|Enlightens the mind.||Alma 32:28; Doctrine and Covenants 6:14–15; 1 Corinthians 2:9–11|
|Replaces darkness with light.||Alma 19:6|
|Strengthens the desire to avoid evil and obey the commandments.||Mosiah 5:2–5|
|Teaches truth and brings it to remembrance.||John 14:26|
|Gives feelings of peace and comfort.||John 14:27|
|Guides to truth and shows things to come.||John 16:13|
|Reveals truth.||Moroni 10:5|
|Guides and protects from deception.||Doctrine and Covenants 45:57|
|Guides the words of humble teachers||Doctrine and Covenants 42:16; 84:85; 100:5–8; Luke 12:11–12|
|Recognizes and corrects sin.||John 16:8|
|Gives gifts of the Spirit.||Moroni 10:8–17; Doctrine and Covenants 46:8–26; 1 Corinthians 12|
|Helps to perceive or discern the thoughts of others.||Alma 10:17; 12:3; 18:16, 20, 32, 35; Doctrine and Covenants 63:41|
|Tells what to pray for||Doctrine and Covenants 46:30; 50:29–30|
|Tells what to do.||2 Nephi 32:1–5; Doctrine and Covenants 28:15|
|Helps the righteous speak with power and authority.||1 Nephi 10:22; Alma 18:35|
|Testifies of truth||Doctrine and Covenants 21:9; 100:8; John 15:26|
|Sanctifies and brings remission of sins.||2 Nephi 31:17; Alma 13:12; 3 Nephi 27:20|
|Carries truth to the heart of the listener||1 Nephi 2:16–17; 2 Nephi 33:1; Alma 24:8|
|Enhances skills and abilities||1 Nephi 1:1–3; Exodus 31:3–5|
|Constrains (impels forward) or restrains (holds back).||1 Nephi 7:15; 2 Nephi 28:1; 32:7; Alma 14:11; Mormon 3:16; Ether 12:2|
|Edifies both teacher and students||Doctrine and Covenants 50:13–22|
|Gives comfort.||Doctrine and Covenants 88:3; John 14:26|
Effects of False Spirits, False Angels, and the Devil.
As mentioned, there also exist false spirits, false angels, and experiences of the Devil.
False Spirits and Angels
The Latter-day Saint scriptures consistently see false spirits and false angels simply as those entities that move you away from the Light of Christ. There really is no distinction between the feelings that one is supposed to experience when under the influence of a false spirit or angel. There is only a specification as to what effect a false spirit or angel has. They are consistently associated with moving into darkness (Moroni 7:17; Doctrine and Covenants 50:1-3). Once one moves into the "darkness" Yet the Lord supposedly provides equal blessings to his children no matter where they are in their mortal journey.
The Devil is also known in Latter-day Saint scripture to influence men and women. He usually shows up at important moments within both the scope of the entire Plan of Salvation and also crucial moments in people's progression towards exaltation. There are two ways in which he is described as as an influence:
- The Devil is understood to be able to appear to people as in the form of angel (Alma 30:53) and more particularly an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14). Latter-day Saint scripture gives a procedure for such an encounter (Doctrine and Covenants 129:8).
- The Devil can cause the tongue to bind and powers of great darkness to gather around people as was the experience of Joseph Smith, founding prophet of the Church (Joseph Smith—History 1:15-17).
Dynamic Influence verses Passive Influence
Latter-day Saints do not claim magnificent experiences from spirits, angels, or the devils always. There are times when the influence felt is more passive than dynamic. This to mean that sometimes a Latter-day Saint can be claiming to feel the Spirit as if it were revealing something important to them (dynamic influence). At other times, a Latter-day Saint can be claiming to feel the Spirit as if it were just assuring them that they are doing what is acceptable before the eyes of God, or just giving them peace of mind, etc (passive influence). As part of the covenant made at baptism, Latter-day Saints promise before baptism to humble themselves before God, desire to be baptized, come forth with broken hearts and contrite Spirits, and witness before the Church that they have truly repented of their sins. They are shown willing to take upon them the name of Christ, having a determination to serve him to the end, and truly manifest by their works that they have received of the Spirit of Christ unto the remission of their sins (Doctrine and Covenants 20:37). They promise to bear the burdens of their fellowmen, mourn with those who mourn, comfort those who stand in need of comfort, and stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that they may be in until death (Mosiah 18:8-9). Since Latter-day Saints can't keep this covenant perfectly, they renew this covenant each week by partaking of something known as the Sacrament. As part of the Sacrament prayer, Latter-day Saints are promised to always have the Spirit to be with them (Moroni 4:3; Moroni 5:2). This Spirit is obviously not a revelatory influence but a passive influence that lets Latter-day Saints know that they are in good standing before God. Latter-day Saints may also feel this passive influence while in the presence of uplifting things. Latter-day Saints are given the injunction to seek after all "virtuous, lovely, good report, or praiseworthy" things (Articles of Faith 1:13). It is also understood that all things that inspire to love God and serve him are of him and that, in general, all good things come from God (Moroni 7:12-14). Thus, when Latter-day Saints are in the presence of uplifting and inspiring things they may feel this more passive influence instead of the more dynamic influence experienced by revelation.
The Holy Ghost in Relation to Other Faiths in Latter-day Saint Thought
Some might wonder how Latter-day Saints view spiritual experiences outside of their own faith tradition. This has been discussed on another article on this wiki.
- See The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, "Chapter 4: How do I recognize and understand the Spirit?" in Preach My Gospel: A Guide to Missionary Service (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2004), 98.
- President M. Russell Ballard, "Now Is the Time,” Ensign (November 2000), 75
- Brant Gardner has brought up some valid issues about the specificity of this prophecy (especially the inclusion of the name of the prophet being the same as Joseph of Egypt) in translation of the plate text at this point of the Book of Mormon—attributing it to Joseph Smith. The verses surrounding v. 15 are enough however to establish that Lehi is looking towards the future and that he has a specific person in mind. There does not seem to be any other viable fulfillment of this prophecy than the translation of the Book of Mormon through the Prophet Joseph Smith. This gives us the proposition ready to be verified by revelation that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God. See Brant Gardner, Second Witness: Analytical and Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon Vol 2. Second Nephi-Jacob (Salt Lake City, UT: Greg Kofford Books, 2007), 2:55-9.
- Blake T. Ostler, Fire on the Horizon: A Meditation on the Endowment and Love of Atonement (Salt Lake City, UT: Greg Kofford Books, 2013), 82-3, 84. ISBN: 9781589585539
- This is exactly the view that biblical scholars recognize as being advocated in the Bible. Donald R. Potts, "Body" in Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible ed., David Noel Freedman (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2000),194; Henry L. Carrigan, Jr., "Soul" Ibid., 1245; Alice Ogden Bellisb, "Spirit" Ibid., 1248. This is also the same understanding advocated in the Book of Mormon. Dennis A. Wright, “Soul” in Book of Mormon Reference Companion ed., Dennis L. Largey (Salt Lake City, UT: Deseret Book Company, 2003), 734; Noel B. Reynolds, "The Language of the Spirit in the Book of Mormon" Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship 33 (2019): 187-222 (193). off-site. The Doctrine and Covenants accords with this understanding. See Larry Evans Dahl, “Soul” in Doctrine and Covenants Reference Companion eds., Dennis L. Largey and Larry E. Dahl (Salt Lake City, UT: Deseret Book Company, 2012), 619. There is nothing in the Pearl of Great Price that contradicts this understanding. See Andrew C. Skinner, "Spirit(s)" in Pearl of Great Price Reference Companion ed., Dennis L. Largey (Salt Lake City, UT: Deseret Book Company, 2017), 280-1; Dennis L. Largey, “Soul” Ibid., 279-8. This understanding makes it so that the noumenon/phenomenon distinction disappears in Latter-day Saint theology. See Blake T. Ostler, "Ep71-Knowledge is Being (Pt 1) - Vol 5" Exploring Mormon Thought. January 17, 2019. <http://www.exploringmormonthought.com/2019/01/topics-discussed-a.html> Accessed October 16, 2019.
- Here the term used is “Spirit of Christ”. It is understood that this is synonymous with “Light of Christ”. See Alan L. Wilkins, “The Light of Christ” in Book of Mormon Reference Companion ed., Dennis L. Largey, 521.
- See “Darkness, Spiritual in the Scripture Index on churchofjesuschrist.org
- Elder David A. Bednar, “Patterns of Light: The Light of Christ” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. <https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/inspiration/latter-day-saints-channel/watch/series/mormon-messages/patterns-of-light-the-light-of-christ-1?lang=eng> Accessed October 5, 2019.
- Brigham Young, (6 October 1855) Journal of Discourses 3:45.
- Doctrine and Covenants 42:61.
- Neal A. Maxwell, “Meek and Lowly” (Brigham Young University devotional, Oct. 21, 1986), 9, speeches.byu.edu.
- See 2 Nephi 32:3.
- President Russell M. Nelson, "Revelation for the Church, Revelation for Our Lives," General Conference (April 2018).