"The clearest teaching on record as to the nature of the spirit of man was given 2200 years B.C., when Jesus, in his spirit body, appeared to the brother of Jared and said: 'Behold, I am Jesus Christ.... Seest thou that ye are created after mine own image? Yea, even all men were created in the beginning after mine own image. Behold, this body, which ye now behold, is the body of my spirit; and man have I created after the body of my spirit; and even as I appear unto thee to be in the spirit will I appear unto my people in the flesh.' (Ether 3:14–16.)"
"The Worth of Souls,"
"Ensign," Nov. 1978, p. 14
"It is not a question of when 'meaningful life' begins or when the spirit 'quickens' the body. In the biological sciences, it is known that life begins when two germ cells unite to become one cell, bringing together twenty-three chromosomes from both the father and from the mother. These chromosomes contain thousands of genes. In a marvelous process involving a combination of genetic coding by which all the basic human characteristics of the unborn person are established, a new DNA complex is formed. A continuum of growth results in a new human being. The onset of life is not a debatable issue, but a fact of science."
"Reverence for Life,"
"Ensign," May 1985, p. 13
"While our physical bodies might be basically 'carnal, sensual and devilish, by nature,' our eternal spirit has the power to rule over the body. We can be in control of our thoughts, feelings, and actions if we properly exercise our moral agency."
"Our Moral Agency,"
"Ensign," Mar. 1996, p. 32
"President Joseph Fielding Smith taught: 'The Spirit of God speaking to the spirit of man has power to impart truth with greater effect and understanding than the truth can be imparted by personal contact even with heavenly beings. Through the Holy Ghost the truth is woven into the very fibre and sinews of the body so that it cannot be forgotten' (Doctrines of Salvation, comp. Bruce R. McConkie, 3 vols. [1954–56], 1:47–48).
"Teaching and Learning by the Spirit,"
"Ensign," Mar. 1997, p. 7
"We have come to earth and gained a body. Now we must learn to master it. President Brigham Young taught that self-control is essential to receiving eternal life: 'The [body] must be brought in subjection to the spirit perfectly, or your bodies cannot be raised to inherit eternal life.... Seek diligently, until you bring all into subjection to the law of Christ.'"
Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young, p. 204
"Development of the spirit is of eternal consequence. The attributes by which we shall be judged one day are those of the spirit. These include the virtues of integrity, compassion, love, and more. (D&C 4:6) Your spirit, by being housed in your body, is able to develop and express these attributes in ways that are vital to your eternal progression. (See 2 Ne. 2:11-16, 21-26; Moro. 10:33-34.)" - Russell M. Nelson, "We Are Children of God," Ensign (CR), November 1998, p.85
“Sometimes we make excuses for ourselves, when we do what we should not do or fall short of what we should have done. We use such expressions as, ‘Oh! the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.’ With such rationalizations we insinuate that it is our physical body’s fault that we sin. As a matter of fact, this is not true. In reality, the physical body is the strongest part of us. Among other reasons, it was given to us to help us overcome our addictions, bad habits, and evil desires. The body is very obedient; generally speaking, it will do exactly what the spirit tells it to do. So it is not the physical body that we are struggling with; it is the spirit we must bring into subjection.” - Hartman Rector, Jr., “Conference Report,” October 1970, Afternoon Meeting, p. 73
“… your spirits when they came to take tabernacles were pure and holy, and prepared to receive knowledge, wisdom, and instruction, and to be taught while in the flesh; so that every son and daughter of Adam, if they would apply their minds to wisdom, and magnify their callings and improve upon every grace and means given them, would have tickets for the boxes, to use brother Hyde's figure, instead of going into the pit. There is no spirit but what was pure and holy when it came here from the celestial world. There is no spirit among the human family that was begotten in hell; none that were begotten by angels, or by any inferior being. They were not produced by any being less than our Father in heaven. He is the Father of our spirits; and if we could know, understand, and do His will, every soul would be prepared to return back into His presence. And when they get there, they would see that they had formerly lived there for ages, that they had previously been acquainted with every nook and corner, with the palaces, walks, and gardens; and they would embrace their Father, and He would embrace them and say, ‘My son, my daughter, I have you again;’ and the child would say, ‘O my Father, my Father, I am here again.’” – Brigham Young, “Journal of Discourses,” 26 vols., 4:269
The mind of man is the crowning creation of God, in whose express image man was made. The development of the mind is a companion responsibility to the cultivation of the spirit, as set forth in the revealed principles of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. -
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