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"With every conscious choice to draw near to God's Light and Love,
Most human problems come in three kinds:
Direct Control Problem — Problem with Self
Each problem has a solution that calls for change:
Problem with Self — Change your Habits
While some problems can be solved through determined will power or creative thinking, our most challenging problems in life require a Change of Heart — a profound and lasting change that naturally leads to a change in habits, a change in approach to others, and a change in attitude about events beyond our control. There is a reason why creative thinking and mental will alone cannot bring about lasting change:
"We cannot solve our problems at the same level of thinking
The fixated state of being mentally stuck is a condition I call "Einstein's Mind Bind" — it means you can't change your mind using the same mind that needs changing, nor can you fix a situation using the same mind that needs fixing. The only way out of this cognitive conundrum is to experience a Change of Heart.
“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he"
Many misinterpret this Proverb by diminishing or removing the meaning of "heart" and emphasizing mind power: "As a man thinks, so is he." But the Proverb verifies that Self-Identity is revealed from the Heart; so to change Who You Are from your core, a Change of Heart must happen.
"The only change that matters is a change of heart,
We know that a Change of Heart necessarily precedes a change of mind, thus a change of perspective, due to truths Jesus taught: that our thoughts, words, and deeds flow from the good or evil treasures of the heart.
"How can ye, being evil,
So how do we come to a Change of Heart? Is the pathway to lasting change only understood by the educated elite? Is the process of profound change an exclusive secret only known to experts?
"Everything we need to know
Because the secret of life is everyone's possession,
"Keep thy heart with all
Because Heavenly Father is infinitely wise, He has provided a way for all His children to know Truth, and thereby receive a fullness of joy in this life and in the eternities.
"Behold, the Spirit of Christ is given to every man, that he may know good from evil;
"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name,
"But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel;
"Two things awe me most, the starry sky above me
"Nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles. ...
“About morals, I know only that what is moral
To clearly hear intuitions of Truth, impressions of Heart, every aspect of inner darkness must be identified and un-done; a person must be clean, to be clear. Pure knowledge is only perceived by pure people.
"Unto the pure all things are pure:
You've heard the phrase "this will be their undoing." Typically, an undoing is a bad thing: unraveling, falling apart, or breaking up — all these are bad. But consider a type of undoing that is good: the process by which we recover clarity of heart is actually more a matter of un-doing, than of doing.
Becoming Clean and Clear is not something
When you feel that something is good, and you are purely honest in the experience of that impression, no further evidence is needed — the Truthful Feeling is the evidence. There is no greater guide to fulfillment and refinement than the crystal clarity that speaks as a whisper to your soul.
The voice of Light is heard in the Light.
We enjoy the full presence of Light when we are clean: personal purity is the key to clearly hearing the voice of Light. To become clean, we must strip away every aspect of darkness in our lives. When we fail to un-do inner darkness, we literally cannot perceive the pathway to honor; we will be blind to the perspective and logic of Light. As long as there is inner darkness, there will be self-deception.
Self-Deception = The Problem that You have a Problem,
If we are blind to our self-deceptions, how can we possibly recognize our blindness, if we are blind?
Three Tell-Tale Signs that You
A thorough understanding of the tell-tale signs of self-deception provides awareness sufficient to catch yourself and correct your course. The patterns are predictable and observable; they are signs central to the aim of un-doing! Seeing these signs in yourself provides a huge clue to what you must un-do.
Tell-Tale Sign of Self-Deception: Justifying
"People who act with integrity,
"You can't talk your way out of a problem
Tell-Tale Sign of Self-Deception: Accusing
"People seem not to see that their opinion of the
"When you judge another,
"You don't see the world as it is,
Tell-Tale Sign of Self-Deception: Resenting
Re-senting others, or situations, is a re-occurring activity: The resentful person engages in re-sending yesterday's contrary energy. Re-sending resentful energy is today's decision that squashes tomorrow's hope.
The act of re-sent-ment tethers you to yesterday's misery. This is a consistent law of life: Every resentful seed sown today . . . returns a bitter harvest tomorrow.
Resentment is the Poison that You Drink,
When I am False . . . I feel
To a certain extent, recognizing tell-tale signs of the inner darkness can be grasped by intellectual awareness and study, as parables and principles are pondered. But ultimately the task of un-doing inner darkness is not an intellectual process, but a spiritual process that requires redemption by a Redeemer. The Way to all Change, Healing, and Renewal is through the Lord, Jesus Christ, and Faith in Him.
"In some cases, temptation may have the added force
We express Faith in Christ as we whole-heartedly believe the words that Jesus taught during His mortal ministry, as well as the words of inspired prophets.
The Words of Christ offer profound principles that clarify issues of mental health and personal accountability:
"And ye shall know
"There hath no temptation taken you
This passage promises a "way to escape" out of any temptation. God promises that no one will be tempted beyond his or her personal capacity to choose that "way to escape." Add to this marvelous promise a truth affirmed by Nephi:
"I will go and do the things which the Lord
Jesus taught that "all things are possible to him that believes" (Mark 9:23), and that "things which are impossible with men are possible with God" (Luke 18:27). In light of the infinite reach of God's redeeming power, weigh the implications of this scripture as to symptoms of post traumatic stress:
"And it came to pass that as I was thus racked with torment, . . . behold,
But does Christ's Atonement relieve and erase only torment due to sin?
"And behold, he shall be born of Mary, . . . a precious and chosen vessel, . . .
Whether traumatic stress arises due to sin or to sickness, the Atonement of Jesus Christ can rescue and redeem every person, in every situation, according to their Faith in Christ.
"Like a broken vessel, we must remember,
"Nothing is beyond His redeeming reach or His encircling empathy; therefore,
Even though Christ has power to heal every affliction of mind, body, and soul, nevertheless, it is wise to draw a distinction between physical ailments that have physical origins, as opposed to mental and emotional ailments that arise due to psychological or spiritual origins.
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden,
While you may feel spiritual "rest" by casting your burden upon Christ, you may also need additional insulin if you have diabetes. Remember, "rest" is the opposite of torment, anxiety, and depression, but it is not always the opposite of high blood sugar and insulin deficiency. As to most mental and emotional ailments, scriptural promises apply:
"This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, . . . the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy,
The choice is ours, whether we will come unto Christ and receive His healing, or choose to resist His sweet invitations to be filled with love, joy, and peace. All of God's children are free to choose the "way to escape" out of every temptation, and are free to choose the "way" to accomplish every commandment.
"Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; . . . they are free to choose
Because we are free to choose liberty or captivity, we are free to do good or inflict harm upon others; thus it follows that all "must come to judgment" for their choices.
"If it were possible that our first parents could have gone forth and
Heavenly Father created an earthly condition where His children could be accountable for their choices:
"That every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity,
The Division of Response-Ability:
Heavenly Father has given His children moral agency and has caused us to be accountable for every choice of good or evil. And at the end of our earthly test, all humanity will account for the choices they've made.
During our earthly test, God has promised a way to escape from every temptation (1 Cor. 10:13) and has also promised a way to accomplish every commandment (1 Nephi 3:7). In light of these divine promises, a curious contradiction is asserted by certain "experts" who claim that people can do acts of violence against others and may not be responsible. The experts reason that certain perpetrators have a mental disease and supposedly do violence beyond their free will to choose.
For such experts, having a mental illness means that certain souls are not accountable, and inflict harm on others by no fault of their own; these experts call for society to take responsibility for detecting and diagnosing mental illness, to assure that those who are simply sick receive the correct medications.
But in light of God's revealed word in scripture, we know that our infinitely wise Creator did not create human beings in such a way that they can create murderous myhem, and yet not be responsible for that carnage. Hence here's the lie that some people buy: That people can be abusive to others, not by choice, but because of chemical imbalance or some other biological flaw.
This perspective implies that moral agency is suspended when people get mental diseases supposedly by no fault of their own, just like they might get the mumps or the measles. In contrast to what experts say about mental illness -- that one's bad biology can allegedly override free will and accountability -- the following quotes declare the opposite conclusion:
"Nothing is beyond His redeeming reach or His encircling empathy."
"Broken minds can be healed just the way broken bones and broken hearts are healed."
"While therapy can support a person's will, it cannot
In regard to what is called mental illness and mental disorder, the burning questions are these:
For those who are deemed mentally disordered, are they incapable of exercising moral discipline?
For those diagnosed as mentally ill, are they incapable of choosing a Mighty Change of Heart through Christ, and being healed of compulsive habits and entrenched addictions?
"And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe
Is Almighty God, really almighty? Or are there some things He simply cannot do, like extend healing and health to millions diagnosed with disorders like ADHD, PTSD, OCD, MDD, and Bipolar? While medication for mental distress may at times be helpful (like a temporary crutch is used while a broke-bone heals), ultimately medications for mental disorders merely mask symptoms, and do not cure the cause of emotional misery. Different from physical illness, so-called mental illness has no bacteria or virus to cause disorder.
As an explanation of cause, "chemical imbalance" is a theory and not a fact; decades of double-blind clinical trials show abundant empirical evidence that contradicts the "chemical imbalance theory of depression." When people feel misery of mind and emotion, ironically, this misery continues because they choose it:
So, whenever you feel Miserable, one way or the other, most misery is Self-Inflicted:
Hitting Myself with the Misery Stick!
Why Would Anyone Choose To Make
While some misery is inflicted in the moment by
Emotional misery is Self-Inflicted through acts of commission and omission:
On the other hand, the Bible gives an example of another scenario where a person's Suffering is explained by a Situation that has been divinely designed as a perfecting Trial.
By no fault of his own, Job suffered a major depression so severe that he wished he had never been born (Job 3:11 & 10:19-20). But imagine if Job were living in our day, how psychiatrists might diagnose his misery: Bipolar, PTSD, MDD are likely possibilities, and the usual drugs would be prescribed too — drugs that would mask symptoms but not cure the cause.
"There exists no suffering that lies beyond His power to redeem, no sorrow
Again, God has given all humanity the gift of moral agency to choose between good and evil. An infinitely wise Father in Heaven created His children to be accountable. But what about those who are Insane? This burning question looms large:
Are people who some consider Crazy
Any person who would murder 20 elementary school children (as well as 6 adults) in Newtown, Connecticut, such a person is clearly Insane. But here's the catch: Instead of blaming society for not detecting and diagnosing Adam Lanza's Insanity, God has already made Adam Lanza accountable. Why so?
There can be no other conclusion than divine accountability, else God Himself would be responsible for creating killers who are both crazy and un-accountable.
Thus we must conclude that every Insane Killer has chosen his own Insanity. But this Insanity is not simply chosen in the immediate moment of a terrible tragedy; instead, the person who ultimately becomes lethally crazy, does so through history of dark choices that draws the deranged deeper and deeper into darkness.
One Conscious Choice at a time,
This is the reality of human insanity and divine accountability: God has given His children the power to choose, and along with that power, each individual is accountable for choices made in mortality. Just as some can choose the bondage of demented darkness, the opposite choice of hope is available! Every person is free to choose redeeming rescue and relief from the insane chains of darkness.
With every conscious choice to draw near to God's Light and Love,
This is an introduction to basic principles of healing and change through our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Matt Moody, Ph.D.
Related Articles: Spiritual Roots of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: Cause & Cure for OCD
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