A collection of distilled sarcastic wisdom, numerous photographs, discussions of books and stuff to learn and more stuff to think about from a retired economics professor turned blogger and photographer.
Since I have commented so often about the seeming tragedy and transience of stunningly beautiful flowers like the one posted here that last only a few hours, my son Jim and his family came upon the words of the hymn "In Hymns of Praise" at church Sunday and passed these words on to me:
After a four-hour procedure at the St. George Hospital for my wife, we walked across the street to the Visitor's Center at the St. George LDS Temple and sat on the benches before this replica of Thorveldsen's statue of the Christus for a little while to collect our thoughts and get ready to move on . . . .
Salt Lake City LDS Temple with LDS Church Office Building in background.
LDS Conference Center, used for a wide variety of Church and community events.
The interior of the LDS conference center
Assembly Hall on Temple Square
The famed Mormon Tabernacle, still used for concerts, meetings, and community events I hope both LDS members and non-LDS members have enjoyed this brief tour of Temple Square in Salt Lake City. Temple Square is one of the chief tourist attractions in Utah, attracing members and non-members from all over the world, where tour guides speaking virtually every language in the world are available for tours.
I was intrigued by a speaker in church this morning who used the term "unnecesary grief." We tend to think of grief as bad stuff imposed on us against our will. And, indeed, much grief we must endure does get dumped on our heads unceremoniously, without warning, and without invitation. But the speaker's point was that we could avoid a lot of grief if we paid more attention, avoided circumstances that lead to grief, thought twice before we exhibited bad behavior, planned for the future, and made wiser decisions. So there you are.
To appreciate the intricate detail in this photo of the Salt Lake LDS Temple, double click to the largest resolution. The detail is absolutely amazing.
You can see a bride and groom at the bottom of the photo
My wife and I were married here on December 22 1952 after a torturous trip on icy roads from Laramie WY where I was a senior at the University of Wyoming. Double click to get the full impact. Again, the Salt Lake LDS Temple is easily the most widely known symbol of Salt Lake City to the Church members as well as to the general population. Temple Square hosts an estimated 3-5 million visitors a year. .
This post is the second in a series of posts on the new Doctrine of Over Repentance, explained in the following post, and herein after merely referred to as "The Doctrine" to save space. To explain how this Doctrine is merely an extension of the Laws of Economics and, specifically, the Law of Demand, let me tell you the story of ElRoy.
When ElRoy was born, one of his parents wanted to name him LeRoy, and the other thought that was just too common a name and that ElRoy sounded more dignified. So ElRoy he became.
ElRoy lives on a quiet cul de sac in Hesperia, CA. He chose Hesperia because Herkimer the Rabbit dwells at the In'n'Out Burgers in Hesperia and Herkimer and ElRoy have become very good friends. ElRoy did all of the requisite things to get started in life. He attended four junior colleges and one university for indeterminate periods of time, changed his major 12 times, and could never figure out the difference between debits and credits or whether the earth rotated around the sun or vice versa. He was not just a slow learner, he was merely a disinterested one and thought he could survive in the world with the skills he was born with. He progressed up the ladder of success, beginning with learning how to pour baskets of french fries in grease and slather burgers in thick coats of calorie-laden dressings. He became promoted to the take-out window where he was able to get rid of customers in 39 seconds flat. He then decided that he should have paid attention in college because what he really wanted to do was become a derivatives trader in the financial markets. So he studied night-school courses for 5 years, first of all learning the definition of a derivative and then learning how financial markets worked.
ElRoy, by this time, had acquired a wife and nine children, each of which had the prefix "El" in front of their names, such as Elberta, ElGeorge, ElDorado, ElToro, and the like. He drove a '63 VW microbus left over from the Woodstock era, not only because he could not afford another car, but also because he had followed meticulously the commandment to "multiple and replenish the earth" and all of his multiplying and replenishing required a large vehicle.
Everything was going fine in ElRoy's life. His little bungalow on the cul de sac was comfortable, he loved his wife and children, and he had progressed to being night manager of a convenience store while he was still studying derivatives. Then, one day, his life changed: He had his own car now, a '73 Chevy Vega with 200,000 miles on it that dripped gallons of oil all over the street and his driveway. But he spotted a brand new shiny Infiniti two cul de sacs over. And he began lusting after this shiny, expensive car. Now, we all know, lust is a sin. As are greed, avarice, selfishness, dissembling, prevaricating, misrpresenting, plain old lying, cheating, ogling, and laziness if we are not earning our bread by the sweat of our brow.
Lust and greed led to the danger of Elroy's downfall. He spent his evenings and weekends prowling car dealerships. He tried to trade in his Chevy Vega and his VW Microbus. He began working double shifts. And, no matter what he tried, the best he could do is get a lube job on the Vega. ElRoy began going to Church three times every Sunday to try and rid himself of his greedy lust. Gradually, his love for an Infiniti dwindled. ElRoy had repented. But then he learned of the doctrine of Over Repentance and became plagued with the worry that, perhaps, he had over repented.
We leave the end of this story hanging in the balance, You can figure it out. Meanwhile, I know each of you is listing the sins for which you have underrepented and the sins for which you have overrepented. Remember, however, that Greed and Lust are the roots of the Law of Demand. People have to demand and buy stuff to make the economy go. If everyone stopped buying stuff, we would all go kaput. So think about it.
Today, class, the Curmudgeonly Professor is going to expound on the Doctrine of Over Repentance. I realize that my viewers may think I have dropped a few bricks off the load, but I assure you that this Doctrine is totally related to the laws of economics and, in particular, the Law of Demand. All truth is ultimately rooted in economics, on the one hand, and the scriptures, on the other hand. The discipline of economics is merely an extension of the scriptures.
You may think the Doctrine of Over Repentance belongs solely in theological seminaries and preached on gospel cable broadcasts. We will now set forth to explain.
I first learned about the Doctrine of Over Repentance yesterday when a television evangelical preacher who sinned mightily a few years ago and confessed extensively of his egregious sin, suddenly realized that, perhaps, he had "over repented." What a doctrine! I always thought that when we do wrong we have sinned and that we repent when we stop doing the egregious stuff that led us down the dark and dreary paths of sin and perdition and make restitution and apologies to all we have wronged. Then, we're supposed to be all good to go again except we may, if the Doctrine of Over Repentance (hereinafter the Doctrine, to save space) has any validity, we may overdo our enthusiasm. Maybe there is something to this Doctrine. As you may have observed, deathbed repentance often is over done, and is often correlated positively with the probability of passing away, so to speak. The sicker we are and the less chance of living, the more stuff we are willing to correct, fix, repent of. We make promises, vows, read the scriptures back and forth, pray to beat the band. Then we awaken from our stupor. The bandages come off. We can speak and move our limbs. Our headache is gone. Eureka! But then comes the clincher. How about all that stuff we promised? After all, we're still alive! So will it be a sin if we just pick and choose a few of the easiest things we said we would or would not do? Let's say we can't stand cousin Heber and we vowed we would make up with him. But, on reflection, Cousin Heber is a jackass (a word heard frequently on Matlock and therefore, permissable in everyday speech) and we have never spoken to him in 30 years anyway, and we are well now, so what's the point? You get the drift.
I always figured I was an under repenter, a slothful servant, and that I had a whole backlog of further repenting to do to catch up. But maybe, just maybe, I have gone overboard in feeling overly sorry for doing some things that I wish I hadn't done. Like trying mightily to forgive someone who did me dirt so I would have a clean mind and a pure heart. Now, actually, I wish I hadn't tried to smooth things over in one instance. The guy was a total jerk, and I feel no better for having over repented.
We will further expound on the Doctrine in a following post. Meanwhile, meditate..
Yesterday a speaker in church related this story, as follows:
I was listening to the prelude music at church by a creative organist who was known for improvising high and low notes. I became alert while trying to figure out what background music was being played along with the hymn. Then it came to me: It was the BYU fight song!