Svithe (one on simplicity)


[This is part of a continuing series in which I take old emails I once sent out preclass as part of a calling I once held. This particular email was sent 5/21/09. Certain identifying details have been redacted or changed.]


Mr X will be leading both the elders and the old guys in discussion this Sunday around "Let Him Do It With Simplicity" by L. Tom Perry (http://lds.org/conference/talk/display/0,5232,23-1-947-2,00.html). I'm fairly certain Elder Perry doesn't mean simple in the stupid sense, but in the Thoreavian sense.

It's common knowledge (or would be if you were all stalking me) that I think Thoreau is mostly simple in the stupid sense, but he's better known for saying things like "Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!" and "Simpligy, simplify." (cf) which sort of prove my point, come to think of it.....

Anyway! Elder Perry!

I actually quite enjoyed Elder Perry's talk overall.

From his experiences at Walden Pond, Thoreau determined that there were only four things that a man really needed: food, clothing, shelter, and fuel. I would like to expand on each of these four basic needs of life, as well as the spiritual benefits of a simplified lifestyle.

He then takes these four basic needs and metaphorizes them all over the place. Or, more accurately, applies the first four to Church standards and policies and metaphorizes the final one. The talk is rather short and pithy and easy to get through.

One of his points related to discussion we've had a few times in the last couple months relates to tight times. But let me broaden the question and ask you this: What principles of simplicity should we master now that will benefit us in the years to come?

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