Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Mind Over Matter?

by Sariah S. Wilson

So I'm halfway through "The Lost Symbol," and I find the take on noetic science very interesting.

It sounds all New Age-y and mystical, but I wonder how much of it is rooted in reality.

Can your mental consciousness affect your physical world?

I grew up with a variation of "The Secret." My mother said if you wanted something bad enough, to write it down and put it where you could see it every day. It wouldn't work on things like winning the lottery, but it could work on concrete, real things.

I could give you a long list of things that happened to my family growing up because of the things my mom wrote down. Things she would pray for, be mindful of, keep in the forefront of her thoughts.

I put it to the test myself when I was trying to get pregnant with my daughter. I wanted to have twins (because for some reason I thought this would be awesome and fun (to which parents of multiples are probably laughing at) and because it was within the realm of possibility since doing fertility procedures can often lead to more than one baby). So I wrote down every day on a piece of paper that I wanted twins. We already prayed at home for a baby in every prayer we said. We fasted for that baby, both in our own family and with our extended family. (I will note that I didn't ask in my prayers for twins. I've always avoided putting qualifiers on things I'm asking for in prayer.)

I wanted twins, but mostly I just wanted to be pregnant and have a baby.

Obviously, I didn't end up with twins (one of the babies didn't grow past six weeks), but I did end up with two babies once my son arrived 21 months later (that marks it as "close enough!" in my book).

One of the ways that noetic science experiments seem to work (if you're curious, you can check it out at the website Dan Brown gives in his book - the Intention Experiment) is by having the participants meditate their "intentions."

Meditation is something that's used to strike me as being something not pertaining to my beliefs, until my sophomore year of college when my bishop asked me if I meditated. Um, no, I didn't. I was lucky if I found time to brush my teeth and eat something, let alone meditate. He then opened the scriptures to show me examples of prophets and even Jesus Christ taking time to meditate, and explained how important it would be for my spiritual development.

Now, I'm not saying that I (or anyone else, for that matter) has some special magical power. I read these things and while I don't take them as Gospel truth, I do find them very fascinating. And it caused me to wonder - is this totally different than some of the things we already believe?

When we pray as a group in church, putting our thoughts together, focusing on one thing, do you consider that to be totally different?

Do you think this mind over matter is a bunch of hooey, or do you think it's possible?


At 3/28/2010 4:50 PM, Blogger L.T. Elliot said...

I think there's something to think about when it comes to Noetic Science. I'm interested in watching its progress and in no way feel threatened by it. For me, science is just another testament to God. The mroe I understand of it, the more I recognize the presence of a Divine Being.

Wow. That's a lot more personal than I'm wont to be. ;)


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