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Careful vs. Casual

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Our RS lessons was Careful vs. casual "train wreck" by Becky Craven - I do not like the "just plow them over, don't budge an inch" analogy of the train hitting the car. To me, hitting a car on the tracks is NOT careful. Slowing the train down in cities, or building bridges so the tracks do not intersect streets, or choosing another form of transportation that does NOT plow people over (like a semi-truck that stops, and changes lanes when needed) is a much better form of transportation. There is more than one path to get from point A to point B. ... I did comment, said there is a stiff-necked prideful way of keeping covenants and commandments, and a humble, loving way of keeping them - that humble and loving is best. I also suggested that sometimes when there is an obstacle in our path, we are not supposed to plow through it - not supposed to "kick against the pricks" - that no one is perfect, that some experiences in life are meant to guide us onto a different path - we're not supposed to plow through it, we're supposed to learn from it and change direction.

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2019/04/12craven?lang=eng

"We have a dear friend who was a train engineer. One day while he was driving a train on his route, he spotted a car stopped on the track ahead of him. He quickly realized that the car was stuck and unable to cross the track. He immediately put the train in emergency mode, which engaged the brakes on each boxcar that extended three-quarters of a mile (1.2 km) behind the engine, carrying a load of 6,500 tons (5,900 metric tons). There was no physical chance that the train would be able to stop before it hit the car, which it did. Fortunately for the people in the car, they heard the warning of the train whistle and escaped from the car before the impact. As the engineer spoke with the investigating police officer, an angry woman approached them. She shouted that she had seen the whole incident and then testified that the engineer did not even try to swerve out of the way to miss the car!"

 

“Iron Rod” vs. “Liahona” LDS Church members ... in fact Becky brings up the iron rod in this talk as well.  

For those who experiment with different belief systems, through humility in thinking themselves wrong, through concern over the welfare of others, by many is perceived as a compromise to faith, or as giving up on faith altogether.  - One train track, one iron rod - with a condemnation of all others as not being on the correct path?  

This my way or I will plow you over, I will not budge from my tracks, will not see anything but what is on my tracks kind of mindset really bothers me...  thoughts?

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38 minutes ago, changed said:

One train track, one iron rod - with a condemnation of all others as not being on the correct path? 

I had a thought the other day.  I believe that there will be persons saved in the Celestial Kingdom it will not be empty.  But I also believe if that no one wanted to go or were qualified to be there it would be empty.  So to me this really means that it does not matter what other people are doing.  The failure of others will not get me into the Celestial Kingdom.  Sorry this is a complicated answer to your question.

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5 hours ago, Metis_LDS said:

I had a thought the other day.  I believe that there will be persons saved in the Celestial Kingdom it will not be empty.  But I also believe if that no one wanted to go or were qualified to be there it would be empty.  So to me this really means that it does not matter what other people are doing.  The failure of others will not get me into the Celestial Kingdom.  Sorry this is a complicated answer to your question.

 

If the celestial kingdom is truly is heaven, and heaven is love - together forever as I think it would be, it does matter what others feel and who others are.  It is a group endeavor - to be together.  The more who are united in one heart and one mind, the more heavenly heaven is so yes, anyone not there is a loss.

 

No man is an island,
Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thine own
Or of thine friend's were.
Each man's death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.

 

 

5 hours ago, Calm said:

Where is this analogy, the quote given says the engineer did everything possible to avoid the collision while recognizing at best it would lessen the impact. But there is no “don’t budge an inch” there.  A don’t budge would have had him not slowing down a bit. 

 

I do not believe the engineer did everything possible.  A responsible engineer would proceed slowly and cautiously within a populated area.  A responsible civil engineer would have constructed the train tracks to not intersect streets - would have created bridges that went over the thoroughfares so as not to harm anyone.  

Just think a more beautiful message would have been - careful, humble, loving progression... not plow down others in your path to progress...

stomping on the heads of others, plowing them over ... vs, growing wings..

 

Edited by changed

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2 hours ago, changed said:

................................................

This my way or I will plow you over, I will not budge from my tracks, will not see anything but what is on my tracks kind of mindset really bothers me...  thoughts?

Depends on the situation.  If you are part of a USMC expeditionary force attacking Fallujah, there will be very little mercy or compromise and lots of death for the enemy. In fact, if you are the commander of that force and are too slow in attacking the enemy, Mad Dog Mattis will likely relieve you of command on the spot (as he in fact did in Iraq) in order to get the job done.  Abe Lincoln did the same thing during the Civil War to commanders who were not sufficiently hard core.  Jesus likewise had little patience with those around him who temporized.  He went to his cross with great gusto, alienating everyone except perhaps his mother.

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Posted (edited)

If you want the best educational safetytraining video ever made I recommend this fine German one. Starts off dull but gets good once you get a little into it. You can tell the makers really would have preferred a different genre but if they had to make a forklift safety video it was going to be the campiest slasher B movie forklift safety video ever.

 

Edited by The Nehor
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Can't see anything..:(

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3 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Depends on the situation.  If you are part of a USMC expeditionary force attacking Fallujah, there will be very little mercy or compromise and lots of death for the enemy. In fact, if you are the commander of that force and are too slow in attacking the enemy, Mad Dog Mattis will likely relieve you of command on the spot (as he in fact did in Iraq) in order to get the job done.  Abe Lincoln did the same thing during the Civil War to commanders who were not sufficiently hard core.  Jesus likewise had little patience with those around him who temporized.  He went to his cross with great gusto, alienating everyone except perhaps his mother.

 

1:32,33,34

āchāryāḥ pitaraḥ putrās tathaiva cha pitāmahāḥ
mātulāḥ śhvaśhurāḥ pautrāḥ śhyālāḥ sambandhinas tathā

etān na hantum ichchhāmi ghnato ’pi madhusūdana
api trailokya-rājyasya hetoḥ kiṁ nu mahī-kṛite

 

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The paragraph following the anecdote does seem to be a little strange and to some extent justifying changed´s criticism.
 

Quote

Obviously, if the engineer had been able to swerve and leave the tracks to avoid an accident, he and his entire train would have been lost in a derailment and the train’s forward progress would have come to an abrupt stop. Fortunately for him, the rails of the tracks on which his train ran kept the wheels of the train snugly moving toward its destination regardless of the obstacle in his way. Fortunately for us, we too are on a track, a covenant path we committed to when we were baptized as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Although we may encounter occasional obstacles along the way, this path will keep us moving toward our prized eternal destination if we stay firmly on it.


Counter to changed´s criticism is that the speaker seems to only be saying that swerving and leaving the tracks is unacceptable - slowing down, even stopping for a time is acceptable and appropriate for souls that may ¨get in our way¨. But it´s still a little weird to use an example of other human lives at risk while giving a message about staying the course. So I don´t think it´s as bad as changed has offered as the OP, but then she has also obviously broadened the scope of the metaphor to allow perspective. But it´s still strange and disconcerting. The metaphor, as offered by the speaker, has other direct implications that I do not think she would have wanted it to imply. In the end, I think a better anecdote than this one must exist or, perhaps, skip the anecdote altogether.

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5 hours ago, changed said:

I do not believe the engineer did everything possible.  A responsible engineer would proceed slowly and cautiously within a populated area.  A responsible civil engineer would have constructed the train tracks to not intersect streets - would have created bridges that went over the thoroughfares so as not to harm anyone. 

I think that maybe you are looking past the actual point of the analogy and possibly entertaining unrealistic expectations/understanding of the problems that civil engineers have in designing train tracks. More often than not, areas are developed around existing tracks and intersections are created where none existed when the tracks were laid. Cost considerations often have been a major consideration is deciding whether to overpass a set of tracks at intersections rather than using warning signals and some times gate arms to deter traffic. Speeds are reduced in areas where a lot of intersections are present. It is recognized by most people that a train cannot stop on a dime and cannot swerve to avoid obstacles in its path. They have a set path they must follow or a catastrophic derailment will take place. Every effort is made to warn people ahead of the train by warning lights and the train whistle to clear the tracks.

Now, while the analogy is not a perfect one, the actual point is that the path to exaltation is a set path. There is only one. There will be obstacles in our path which we must overcome if we are to make it. So maybe we can take you advice there, and the advice of Sister Craven, to slow the train down and watch for obstacles, to make sure that we can see the tracks are clear and have enough time to stop before a crash. After all, on this train the schedule for the destination is not known. Getting to that destination safely is the ultimate goal. As Christ tole His apostles in Matthew 10:22 " And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved." By doing so carefully we will be able to avoid the snares and pitfalls that attend those who do so casually.

That is the idea I gained from the talk, anyway.

Glenn

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Has anyone considered that perhaps a train is the wrong choice of transportation.  There is more than one way to get from California to New York.  Trains by their very design are dangerous because they can't stop suddenly and they can't deviate from their course.  They are the Iron Rod approach to getting back to God. 

But what of the alternative.  What about the Liahona way of getting back to God.  Each day, looking to God to guide you that day how best to come closer to Him.  Perhaps there is some fellow traveler who needs more help that day than your need to make an extra two miles.  Perhaps God wants you to take a different road for a while because what you find on that road will make you a better person or someone else a better person.  Perhaps the people stuck in the car need you to release them.  You can't do that from a train traveling at high speed.  Is all the train can do by it's very nature is to leave casualties along it's path.  Is there a race to get back to God?  Is there a timetable we must meet?  Can we only pick up those waitig at the station to bring along?

What kind of Jew was Christ?  Was He an Iron Rod Jew who was on a straight path, never deviating from what was laid out before Him?  Or did he wake up each day to look to the Liahona to guide Him. Did He take time to pick corn on the Sabbath, even when that was not on the tracks. Or not pick up a stone, even though that was not on the path.

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3 hours ago, changed said:

 

1:32,33,34

āchāryāḥ pitaraḥ putrās tathaiva cha pitāmahāḥ
mātulāḥ śhvaśhurāḥ pautrāḥ śhyālāḥ sambandhinas tathā

etān na hantum ichchhāmi ghnato ’pi madhusūdana
api trailokya-rājyasya hetoḥ kiṁ nu mahī-kṛite

 

Ah,  yes, the Sanskrit of the Bhagavad Gita, chapter 1, verses 34-35.

You know, I was just thinking last night of the Dalai Lama, who of course is not Hindu, but who is another Eastern lover of peace and harmony, and who would not wish harm to anyone for any reason.  I was also thinking of Donald Lopez, Prisoners of Shangri La, 2nd ed. (Univ of Chicago, 1999), a realization that one cannot leave the West behind, despite one's youthful good intentions.

 

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3 hours ago, california boy said:

Has anyone considered that perhaps a train is the wrong choice of transportation.  There is more than one way to get from California to New York.  Trains by their very design are dangerous because they can't stop suddenly and they can't deviate from their course.  They are the Iron Rod approach to getting back to God. 

But what of the alternative.  What about the Liahona way of getting back to God.  Each day, looking to God to guide you that day how best to come closer to Him.  Perhaps there is some fellow traveler who needs more help that day than your need to make an extra two miles.  Perhaps God wants you to take a different road for a while because what you find on that road will make you a better person or someone else a better person.  Perhaps the people stuck in the car need you to release them.  You can't do that from a train traveling at high speed.  Is all the train can do by it's very nature is to leave casualties along it's path.  Is there a race to get back to God?  Is there a timetable we must meet?  Can we only pick up those waitig at the station to bring along?

What kind of Jew was Christ?  Was He an Iron Rod Jew who was on a straight path, never deviating from what was laid out before Him?  Or did he wake up each day to look to the Liahona to guide Him. Did He take time to pick corn on the Sabbath, even when that was not on the tracks. Or not pick up a stone, even though that was not on the path.

Is it not possible to be both?

Glenn

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There is not enough information to determine whether the engine driver did everything possible. There is no indication he didn’t. I will say that train speeds are not decided by the engineer. Every mile of track has a speed limit that must be adhered to. A manual is aboard each train that indicates this, as well as speed limit indicators trackside. 

On German rails, with which I am most familiar, there is also a button called a SIFA, that must be pushed by the driver every 20 seconds to indicate he is awake, or the train will stop. 

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I think we're going to get more and more of these talks, since the amount of members leaving is huge. The church understands that others can be influenced by these members that have left, and want them to plow through and stay on the path, running over might be a metaphor for not listening and focusing only on the rod. 

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18 hours ago, changed said:

 

“Iron Rod” vs. “Liahona” LDS Church members ... in fact Becky brings up the iron rod in this talk as well.  

 

"Becky?" That would be President Craven? 

I didn't love this talk. We had a RS lesson on it. I didn't love that either. But analogies can only be stretched so far. 

We have few talks from women. Not every one is going to be top of the mark. So ignore it and move to one that is more satisfying.

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2 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

The liahona/iron rod distinction to me are a false dichotomy that's made more by our own cultural/spiritual feelings more than what's found in scripture. After all, there is a reason both of them are found in the story of Lehi and his family....and why Nephi, depending on how you look at it, could be seen as both "iron rod" or the "liahona" oriented. 

Pointing out the danger or issues with trains in the OP and your post seems a little odd to me. On a real-world note, there is no "perfect" means of travel where we can completely avoid pain, danger, cost, or accident. Traveling to CA to NY, you could take train, plane, or automobile....horse, bike or foot. All of them have a cost. All of them have risk. All of them may lead to making difficult decisions while staying on course.  To pretend that there is an answer simply by changing the means of travel and that one day we'll find the perfect method to not need to confront risk or harm or crashes seems both unrealistic and counter to the point of God's plan in the first place. 

To me, what's being mentioned is trying to change the circumstance rather than confront it and learn how to move through it even if that means making difficult or painful decisions. It reminds me of the verse that talks about being a follower of this or that disciple/apostle/Christ with the inferred exclusion of the others. That isn't sustainable or functional. IF you are only an "iron Rod" follower, you're right...the inferred rigidity in that use could lead you to problems. If you are only a "liahona" follower, likewise the constant flexibility can also lead to issues. 

Here's an odd example that's happened in the last week of my life around the WoW. On sunday a friend came by and talked about her own disordered eating that led to severe rigid eating (likely orthorexia). After listening about her progress and wanting to encourage her healthy switched, I invited her to eat ice cream with me in the near future. No one would describe ice cream as something proscribed in the WoW. But a "liahona approach" would note that doing so was likely more in line with the "Spirit" of the law in this instant than following the "letter" or "iron Rod" approach. Also this same week I had a major health scare. Usually I'm a healthy eater, but my diet and life  in general had gotten a little out of whack. And it showed fairly dramatically in my blood pressure. As a pregnant lady, I can't exactly afford high blood pressure for any length of time. So I did something drastic, rearranged my diet to one of exact and careful obedience of the WoW after carefully praying about it and having faith that if I listened the blessings it promised about health/destroying angels would follow. Forget not having ice cream, I'm not eating cheese or added sugar or non-plant based/low processed fats...I turned down a kind sister's offer of homemade bread, because I knew it likely contained white flour instead of whole grains. In essence I took the proverbial "iron rod" approach. If I had taken the exact same "liahona approach" that I did with my friend and shrugged off careful exactness, the drastic drop in my blood pressure in the following days may not have happened and the added revelation and guidance as to what to correct in my daily life to avoid further crashes may not have happened either. In short, I cannot say that one approach or the other was really the right way. Focusing on the means of transport and looking for the perfect uneventful/non-painful means to move misses the point that there is really only one destination and getting there is the imperative.

To your last question about Jesus. I see Him as fully integrated into following the true direction that was needed. At times that meant questioning hyper-rigid beliefs that had become cumbersome to correct movement (like the corn you mentioned). At others it entailed following exactly prophecy and expectations set forth by God (like being baptized or being crucified). 

 

with luv,

BD

 

 

Thanks for your comments and taking the time to share what you believe.  I don't mean to imply that the Liahona approach means you can't do things with exactness.  The difference I see is beginning each day seeking Gods direction.  I am sure at times, the path can be quite direct and narrow.  But at other times, it might not be what we expect or want it to be.  The Iron Rod approach, or train or whatever you want to call it by it's nature is fixed and is predicated on where the rod or track goes.  

I am also not saying that one approach is right for everyone.  

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3 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

The liahona/iron rod distinction to me are a false dichotomy that's made more by our own cultural/spiritual feelings more than what's found in scripture. After all, there is a reason both of them are found in the story of Lehi and his family....and why Nephi, depending on how you look at it, could be seen as both "iron rod" or the "liahona" oriented. 

I believe you are correct in your analysis. It is those labels again. Seems like people are trying to stuff others in a box that just may not exist, a category that may exist only in the mind of the beholder/stuffer. The Book of Mormon narrative seems to suggest that we need to use all of the spiritual tools we have available to stay on the strait and narrow path (not paths) and to make decisions and plans on a daily base.

Glenn

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On 5/27/2019 at 2:43 AM, california boy said:

Has anyone considered that perhaps a train is the wrong choice of transportation.  There is more than one way to get from California to New York.  Trains by their very design are dangerous because they can't stop suddenly and they can't deviate from their course.  They are the Iron Rod approach to getting back to God. 

But what of the alternative.  What about the Liahona way of getting back to God.  Each day, looking to God to guide you that day how best to come closer to Him.  Perhaps there is some fellow traveler who needs more help that day than your need to make an extra two miles.  Perhaps God wants you to take a different road for a while because what you find on that road will make you a better person or someone else a better person.  Perhaps the people stuck in the car need you to release them.  You can't do that from a train traveling at high speed.  Is all the train can do by it's very nature is to leave casualties along it's path.  Is there a race to get back to God?  Is there a timetable we must meet?  Can we only pick up those waitig at the station to bring along?

What kind of Jew was Christ?  Was He an Iron Rod Jew who was on a straight path, never deviating from what was laid out before Him?  Or did he wake up each day to look to the Liahona to guide Him. Did He take time to pick corn on the Sabbath, even when that was not on the tracks. Or not pick up a stone, even though that was not on the path.

I would argue the Iron Rod is the prereq. It is the more rule based approach but it is the groundwork to building a new person through Christ. Eventually you get to a more “Liahona” path but you do not get there by discarding the commandments. The commandments are the schoolmaster to lead us to Christ. Trying to skip ahead or hold part of the gospel in a kind of benign contempt has been tried but I have never seen it work.

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On 5/27/2019 at 3:43 AM, california boy said:

Has anyone considered that perhaps a train is the wrong choice of transportation.  There is more than one way to get from California to New York.  Trains by their very design are dangerous because they can't stop suddenly and they can't deviate from their course.  They are the Iron Rod approach to getting back to God. 

But what of the alternative.  What about the Liahona way of getting back to God.  Each day, looking to God to guide you that day how best to come closer to Him.  Perhaps there is some fellow traveler who needs more help that day than your need to make an extra two miles.  Perhaps God wants you to take a different road for a while because what you find on that road will make you a better person or someone else a better person.  Perhaps the people stuck in the car need you to release them.  You can't do that from a train traveling at high speed.  Is all the train can do by it's very nature is to leave casualties along it's path.  Is there a race to get back to God?  Is there a timetable we must meet?  Can we only pick up those waitig at the station to bring along?

What kind of Jew was Christ?  Was He an Iron Rod Jew who was on a straight path, never deviating from what was laid out before Him?  Or did he wake up each day to look to the Liahona to guide Him. Did He take time to pick corn on the Sabbath, even when that was not on the tracks. Or not pick up a stone, even though that was not on the path.

The Liahona way of getting back to God is an old reliable for those who seek to ignore the Law. The one I used often was, "I follow the Spirit of the Law". This sounds good to the next individual who does not even know what the commandments are, but sure enjoys the flexibility of what becomes, "I will just do what I want!"  

There is an inbuilt assumption that the holder of the Liahona, though human, is also earnestly seeking to follow God, but is lost and needs to know what path to take. Once knowing the Law, recognizing the path to take, it is holding to the Iron Rod. 

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