It is a transformative idea that the motivation for our scholarship is to assist in the refinement of our students through learning and development.
I know some of you are tired. You are not sure you can keep at it. You go ahead and find some stillness today. Gather your strength today. Rest up today, because tomorrow we ride for Zion. And it is not quite Zion if you are not there.
Just as with Brigham Young, Leonardo da Vinci’s ultimate allegiance wasn’t to a single discipline but rather to the “triumph of truth.” No individual or perspective is the owner of truth; truth is as widespread and diverse as those who search for it.
You are part of the Lord’s army. You don’t need to be set apart for that. The call to stand up for the truth is not a Church calling. It is a life calling.
The concept of becoming a Zion people is embedded deep in our theology. In this dispensation, the Lord’s desire for His people to build a Zion society was made apparent even before the Church was organized.
Inspiring learning is our entire university project. It is a shorthand description of the mission and aims. It is about educating our students by study, by faith, and by experience.
In my experience, for an activity to build character it must be inherently good, it must require concerted effort, and it must demand perseverance over an extended period of time. Language study meets all three of these character-building prerequisites.
Learning is more powerful and truths are better understood when they are shared with others in an effort to help them improve.
I believe that when we exercise our agency to learn, grow, and accomplish good in this world and when we apply “the principles of righteousness,” our influence will naturally increase.
When we apply the gospel to all aspects of our life, we stay true to ourselves and connected to our purpose for living.
I think we need to recognize that we tend to do our best work when we are on the outer edges of what we know, when we are doing something hard and new, and when we are growing through challenge.
May we take advantage of the many mentors who surround us this year, and may we be worthy mentors to those whom we serve. May we not just take direction but may we take direction well, without taking offense.
And so we look forward to the coming year with optimism, knowing that as we become a vibrant and dedicated community of learners and lifters, we will truly assist individuals in their quest for perfection and eternal life.
May we have a productive year—a year of success and influence elevated and shaped by BYU’s unique mission to “assist individuals in their quest for perfection and eternal life.”
When we prioritize exploration, then we are inspired, and new and valuable discoveries can occur.
I suspect that even in Christ’s learning years He developed through a multitude of small choices rather than just through a few monumental decisions.
If we are not afraid, our life experiments can be tools to learn truth and to make changes. The pioneer chemist Marie Curie believed that “nothing in life is to be feared—it is only to be understood.”
Because of the Atonement, all failures are changeable and temporary, except the one that occurs when we give up. So whatever you do, don’t you dare give up.
Go forth and prosper, both spiritually and professionally. We applaud you and will always hold you close to our hearts.
No matter what challenges or uncertainties you face, I pray that you will always faithfully employ this essential spiritual element in your learning.
As we move forward into the world, we must continue to ask questions, create solutions, and pursue that which enlarges our souls and enlightens our understanding.
For you to remain as relevant at the end of your career as you are now or when you finally finish your formal academic preparations, you will be required to know how to keep on learning and hopefully contribute to the continued learning of others.
The Lord has furnished us with two models to help us cope with the tension we often face between faith and reason. These two models take the form of the wanderer and the wonderer. Both of these types appear prominently in our scriptures and provide us postures we ought to consider assuming as we confront the challenges of living in a modern world.
There are so many opportunities for lifelong learning. If we do our best and seek Heavenly Father’s help, He will strengthen us beyond our natural abilities and help us to learn.
Michael Wesch discusses the intersection of two knowledge machines—universities and the internet—and how without questions, students cannot learn.
Because attaining knowledge is such an important task—and a lifelong endeavor—it is important to understand the meaning and implications of being teachable. When we are teachable, the Holy Ghost bears witness of truth and we increase in knowledge and wisdom.
Today I would like to share three lessons that I have learned from the experiences from my life. I do so with the sincere hope that these lessons might in some way be helpful to you.
The scriptures themselves are our best sources on learning and teaching—the Savior being the perfect model of a learner/teacher.
I have pondered the analogous circumstances in which many of the recorded prophets found themselves faced with commands from God that were, if anything, counterintuitive. How and why did they respond?
In the end the BYU Mission Statement calls on us to “have a strong effect on the course of higher education” and to “be an influence in a world we wish to improve.” In this, our uniqueness can be an asset.
Sometimes life’s greatest lessons come to us at the most dreadful times of our lives. How we respond at such times of crisis determines if such challenges will be times for progression or merely times of suffering.
There is so much to learn. So be curious. Keep your sense of wonder about the world. We have been given a great promise over and over again. Ask, and you will receive; seek, and you will find.
Our test is to learn to serve one another and to attain personal holiness. All the commandments of God tend to one, or usually both of these ends at the same time.
"If your eye be single to my glory, your whole bodies shall be filled with light, and there shall be no darkness in you; and that body which is filled with light comprehendeth all things." He will help us in our quest for knowledge if we will—as we have done here at Brigham Young University—center our learning on Him.
The Lord’s program is to make bad men and women good and good men and women better as He prepares us for eternal life. Participation in His kingdom here on earth can change us in wonderful ways if we are faithful.
A rather common fallacy accepted in society is that with graduation, one has finished her or his education. That is a serious misunderstanding if we are considering a truly educated person, particularly one with the lofty goal of achieving eternal life and eventually perfection.
To increase your wisdom and stature, you will exercise your agency. You will choose your teachers and your role models. Choose them wisely.
You and I cannot know everything. There is, however, One who does know it all, who understands all, who created all and everything—He is the Father of our spirits, our Father in Heaven. Because He is our Father, He has an intense interest in our education. He knows what we need to learn to fulfill our mission in life.
You may have thought that you are here at this university to take a certain series of courses, obtain a degree, and then leave learning behind. If so, you do not fully understand. God desires the flourishing of your whole soul for the glories He has in mind for you, including an eternal family with children who will shine as jewels in His crown and yours, and that is why He intends to bless you, if you will exert yourself, with a soul-stretching education.
The doctrine of continuing and even continuous revelation is a fundamental and distinctive tenet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In it we find the seeds of the Restoration and also the basis for our understanding concerning the importance of learning. In fact, in the face of obvious differences between revelation from heaven and the kind of learning more common to our university experiences, we also find some significant commonalities of which we should be constantly aware.
Today you become alumni of Brigham Young University and have the responsibility to help the world better understand who we are and what we do at this remarkable institution. How you live, what you do, and what you become ultimately define this university.
You can learn vitally important things by what you hear and see and, even more, by what you feel, as prompted by the Holy Ghost.
While the reputation and standing of this remarkable institution are measured and evaluated in a number of different ways, ultimately the real value of its contribution is reflected in the graduates that it produces.
We hope and expect that you have grown in your understanding of the knowledge of the world and also in your convictions concerning the truthfulness of the revelations from heaven. Most important, we pray with confidence that the skills you have acquired and the talents you have magnified will allow and assist you to continue to learn throughout your lives “by study and also by faith.”
I would like to spend our precious moments this morning in continuing to reflect on the legacy of learning that we enjoy, largely influenced by the example and efforts of living prophets from Joseph Smith to Gordon B. Hinckley.
In a very real sense BYU extends the long shadow of the Prophet’s personal and prophetic commitment to seek learning by study and by faith. Joseph loved to learn.
I believe that our only hope to find the “more excellent way” at BYU is through charity, the pure love of Christ.
For our lives to become the music of hope for the world, our learning must be heart deep; it must reach our very core. We must be able not only to access information but to understand; we must acquire not only knowledge but wisdom.
In such times of peace, happiness, and comfort, we are feeling the gift of the Holy Ghost at work with us. When we experience those good feelings, we can rest assured that we are feeling the consequences of possessing the gift of the Holy Ghost, and we are thus feeling the witness to us, on the part of this member of the Godhead, that Jesus Christ is real.
It is beneficial for all of us to examine periodically where we spend our time and money and realize that this denotes the state of our hearts. As we adapt to simplicity, we feel more joy and gratitude. We appreciate more fully what we already have.
If we are satisfied with where we are, if we are pretty sure we have the whole thing figured out, we are in effect saying: “We have received, and we need no more.” The point of this life is to grow and progress, to become something so unbelievably far from where we are now that it almost seems ridiculous to contemplate.
“God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom." You have knowledge and skill and know how to learn so that you may acquire wisdom.
After reflecting on the 9/11 tragedy a year ago, BYU's president counsels students to treat the university, and their bodies, as temples of learning.
Family relationships are sacred. The bonds within families have spiritual roots. We know that we lived as brothers and sisters before coming to earth.
You will be able to do and accomplish so much that I will only add to the other advice you have received: live the principles of the gospel.
I propose that in striving to achieve the aims of a BYU education, you will simultaneously be advancing in your quest for perfection and eternal life—a quest that we must always remember is made possible only through the love and the Atonement of the Savior.
The knowledge of most worth comes first as we learn to place all learning in the context of the gospel of Jesus Christ and seek the gifts of the Spirit as we learn.
It is frightening to be asked to speak to you today. It is even more frightening when I hear those who have sacred callings in the Church—those much closer to the Spirit than I—acknowledge the great responsibility they feel when asked to speak at a BYU devotional. I don’t know that I will say anything profound today, but I will tell you a few things I have learned from others…
Do you dream of future discoveries? What visions do you have for a better world? Through spiritual light and hard work, you can make those dreams a reality.
The properties of physical light teach us about spiritual light and truth. By working toward the objectives of BYU, we can bring more light to the world.
Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin shares lessons and wisdom learned from enjoying the path of lifelong discipleship, including stories from his time as a missionary.
"We can only be perfected through the Father’s plan, with the core of that plan centered in Christ and His atonement"
In all of your education at BYU, make sure you are learning to think clearly, to act well, and to appreciate life. Learn for this life and for eternity.
Understanding the nature of God, and our own nature as a child of God, can strip us of pride and enable us with the power to learn.
My dear fellow students seeking learning, even by study and also by faith: I salute you in this noble effort. I consider myself doubly blessed to be permitted to serve some of you as a faculty mentor, others as a campus bishop. My life and that of my family is unmeasurably richer because of our associations with BYU students, whom Linda and I (sort of as doting surrogate parents) consider…
I was asked to address myself today to my experiences at the intersection of my studies and my beliefs. I have chosen to consider what I would call the development of the searching mind. Because I was asked to speak on some aspect of the integration of faith and reason, it occurred to me that I needed to take a moment and dedicate this talk to my husband. So much…
We receive the most powerful education when we seek to answer the questions of our hearts, diligently taking both our efforts and answers to the Lord.
The challenge contained in the motto of this university, to learn and to serve, represents the purpose of our mortal life.
We know what it means to seek learning by study, but let us not forget to seek knowledge "also by faith," through obedience, prayer, and diligence.
Paul and Alma and Harold B. Lee: What Prophets and Common Sense Can Teach Us About Learning From Our Mistakes
When we make a mistake (although we shouldn't stop trying to avoid them), we can learn from it as Alma, Paul, and other prophets have shown.
Latter-day Saints should have all the genuine excitement others have in the traditional adventure of learning, including learning secular truths—and we, of all people, should have a little more!
"Now, since we know the Lord loves all of his children, we need to inquire whether our being here at this time with these blessings is by chance or whether there might be a purpose to it."
"I can think of no better lesson that all of us could learn from our experience at BYU than the importance of genuinely caring for our neighbor."
"Most important, never forget to get on your knees and ask your Heavenly Father to point you in the right direction."
Yours is a future without limit because you have decided to be unwavering in obedience to the Lord.
Great minds conceive great questions—questions that spark imagination, questions that stimulate discovery, and questions that provoke more questions. Ignorance cannot last long when accompanied by investigation and inquiry.
As children of God, there is so much for us to learn. By being teachable, we are able to learn of Heavenly Father's love for us and edify each other.
To succeed in life, we need the kind of good judgement and common sense that will compel us to keep learning, keep doing our homework, and keep caring.
In order to continue learning, we must experience the smorgasbords of life rather than only the hamburgers. Leave your comfort zone and explore.
To gain learning and understanding, we must use the proper equipment. Both rational thought and spiritual revelation are necessary for our progression.
Elder Perry and members of his family witness how intensely we need the Lord for our physical, social, emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being.
Neal A. Maxwell shares profound insights about such topics as regret and aspiration, divine blessings and human potential, and praise and criticism.
They key to learning is recognizing that knowledge comes from God. John H. Vandenberg speaks of the advances we have now that one day seemed only fictional.
Jesus Christ is the best friend we have—but do we treat Him like the friend He is? Are we loyal to Him? Do we live the principles He taught?
Remember that your learning does not end when you get your degree. Seek the knowledge—scientific and moral—that will enable true progress in the world.
Learn how authors of anti-Mormon materials use specific strategies to convince readers of their trustworthiness, knowledge, and lack of bias.
Knowledge of countries and kingdoms can be gained from reading scripture and other writings. It is valuable for our spiritual growth.
Learning is an eternal endeavor. We learn—about God, about the world and its knowledge, and about how to better ourselves—for this life and for eternity.
Thomas L. Martin humorously describes the main events of his life and highlights how the hand of the Lord worked to help him reach all his righteous goals.
A former BYU president shares 5 helpful habits that will carry us through the journey of life: learning, loving, thinking, appreciation, and worship.