Teachings of the Prophets: Harold B. Lee on Meditation

The following is from taken from LDS.org under the title, Take Time to be Holy.

President Harold B. Lee talks about the importance of meditation. I am particularly interested in the story related about Bishop John Wells son who was killed in an accident.

How does meditation bring us closer to the Lord?

President [David O.] McKay said, “We don’t take sufficient time to meditate.” I get up early in the morning … , five o’clock, when my mind and spirit are clear and rested. Then I meditate. You can come closer to the Lord than you imagine when you learn to meditate. Let your spirits be taught by the Spirit.

The Twelve will not soon forget President David O. McKay’s admonition in our council meeting one morning when he impressed the vital importance of taking time to meditate in order to keep spiritually attuned. … “It’s a great thing to be responsive to the whisperings of the Spirit and we know that when these whisperings come it is a gift and our privilege to have them. They come when we are relaxed and not under pressure of appointments.”

The President then took occasion to relate an experience in the life of Bishop John Wells, formerly a member of the Presiding Bishopric. A son of Bishop Wells was killed in Emigration Canyon on a railroad track. … His boy was run over by a freight train. Sister Wells was inconsolable. She mourned during the three days prior to the funeral, received no comfort at the funeral, and was in a rather serious state of mind. One day soon after the funeral services, while she was lying on her bed relaxed, still mourning, she claims that her son appeared to her and said, “Mother, do not mourn. Do not cry. I am all right.” He told her that she did not understand how the accident happened. He explained that he had given a signal to the engineer to move on and then made the usual effort to catch the railings on the freight train, but as he attempted to do so his foot caught in a root and he failed to catch the hand rail and his body fell under the train. It was clearly an accident. He said that as soon as he realized that he was in another environment he tried to see his father but he could not reach him. His father was so busy with the duties in the office that he could not respond to his call; therefore, he had come to his mother and he said to her, “You tell Father that all is well with me. I want you to not mourn anymore.”

Then President McKay said that the point he had in mind was that when we are relaxed in a private room we are more susceptible to those things, that so far as he was concerned his best thoughts come after he gets up in the morning and is relaxed and thinking about the duties of the day, that impressions come as clearly as if he were to hear a voice and those impressions are right. If we are worried about something and upset in our feelings the inspiration does not come. If we so live that our minds are free from worry and our conscience clear and our feelings are right toward one another, the operation of the spirit of the Lord upon our spirit is as real as when we pick up the telephone; but when they come, note this, we must be brave enough to take the suggested action. …

Let that be something to remember—you do likewise. Take time to meditate. Many times you will be wrestling with problems, the solution of which can be spiritually discerned.

Don’t get so busy that you don’t have time to meditate. Take the time. The most important testimony does not come by sight, but by the inner witness. Christ may be nearer than we have knowledge. “I am in your midst, but you do not see me. The Holy Ghost bears the sure witness. Mine eyes are upon you. The day cometh when ye shall know that I am.” [See D&C 38:7–8.]

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