Writing in journals
You know what people just don’t seem to do these days? Write in journals. I’ve asked a few people if they write in journals and invariably, the answer is a no. And a weird glare. Who would do something like that?
It’s something that has been emphasized by the church, but I can’t say that I began writing because of what the church said. However, it’s interesting to read about other members who write journals because they are heeding prophetic words. Hmm…I wonder what it was that led to the original fervor about journal-writing? It seems like such a strange thing to advocate.
I remember hearing a story about it in church. I don’t know if it’s an old Mormon wive’s tale or just some superficial part of culture that is utterly undoctrinal — of course, it probably is. What someone had said was that journals were like scriptures. Obviously, we probably won’t see our own words canonized any time soon, but the same spirit that the authors of the scriptures used, we should keep that in mind when we write in a journal. And as we enter trying times (and perhaps even the Millenium), it is our words that will be useful guidance to our children and their children.
I must admit that that seems a bit romantic to me: the idea that soon, we might be in the end of times and our advice and daily life occurences will be cherished by future generations. I mean, in the end, the idea of “end of times” is really morbid, but maybe I’m just a morbid person.
I think part of this is uniquely a Mormon phenomenon. Obviously, it wouldn’t make sense to informally liken journal-writing to scripture creation, because in other denominations, the canon is closed and the books were never meant to be seen as enlightened word-of-God’d journals. But in many ways the Book of Mormon is meant to be a history as told by several journalists. Maybe that’s not official doctrine, but things kinda felt better when I thought of it like that (haha, but it didn’t make me believe in any of it any easier). The idea that the scriptures were personal messages (yet written for our generation) I think resonates for many members, so the idea of writing documents for a future generation also resonates.
That being said, I probably don’t write in my journal enough. I definitely don’t write every day. And I probably would not want anyone to see it. Ever. Not even when I’m dead.