Thursday, March 17, 2011

Young Women's Values—Divine Nature

I have a very hard time looking at myself in the mirror. I use the mirror to look at my face, my hair, my teeth, but I have noticed that I avoid looking myself (or others, for that matter) in the eyes. I think perhaps I am a little afraid of what I see. When I look myself in the eyes, it is as if I see a vast quantity of unfulfilled potential. I begin to realize that I am "born to privilege," and like all privilege, it comes with "specific obligations." (Queen Marie, Ever After)

When I was a teen, in the middle of surviving the Young Women's program, I had been "blessed" with a very sharp wit and the tongue to voice it. I remember (now with shame) bragging about being able to make a person feel one inch tall in one short sentence. (And I did, many times.) Although in college I came to better understand how precious every soul on this earth is, and have long ago lost most of my desire to wield my sharp tongue, there are times that I am tempted. Culture has glorified pointed witticism and made it funny when in reality it's just hurtful.

Part of becoming a true disciple of Christ is to not only learn to look ourselves in the eyes, to bear the divinity in ourselves, but to also look others in the eyes and respect their divinity. Christ demonstrated many times in scripture how He could not only see the divinity in people others thought worthless, but He could reach in and quicken that spark, bring it to life. If there was one spiritual gift I could have, it would be that: to recognize and feed human divinity.


  1. Fascinating post.

    Of course one of the ancient ironies of comedy is that it comes at someone's expense supporting the truth in your statement of the hurtfulness of pointed witticism.

    As for unfulfilled potential, I draw strength from a lesson a good friend taught me in the last few years. He reminded me that eternity is a long time, and we still do not know the endgame for our lives or our eternal existence. There is still time for the atonement to work on us.

    On seeing the divine in others -- what a gift this is when it occasionally surfaces. In me, it has never been more than a temporary condition, but I have enjoyed knowing others who seem far better at it than I am.

    Thanks for sharing these thoughts.

  2. I have a hard time with the mirror, too. I have a strong belief in God's plan and individual divine nature, but have always struggled to accept the same divinity within myself... I can't wait to read your insights on Individual Worth!

  3. It's interesting to me that some of the best people I know struggle to accept themselves - and, in many cases, it has absolutely nothing to do with religion or upbringing.

    Thanks for this post, SR. If everyone saw the divine nature and individual worth of themselves and everyone else, this would be a VERY different world.


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