Body and Spirit: Divinely Inspired, Incompatible

Body SpiritAs a friend and I were discussing the most popular challenge facing LDS young single adult men (finding a suitable woman to date and marry) our subject expanded as he touched on an puzzling notion.

“I just thought of something cool though… your spirit isn’t attracted to men, it’s your body, so the more you gain control of your body through your spirit, the more you can overcome [your attractions]…”.  This was a semi-familiar idea to me, but oddly also seemed somewhat foreign.  I wrote down some thoughts in my handy-dandy moleskine notebook (one of my many strange addictions), and will pursue to document my train of thought on this page.

What this close friend brought up, first off, was the notion of two separate entities, the body and the spirit.  Obviously this is elementary to LDS theology where we are taught that our spirits are created by our Heavenly Father, making us his children, and our bodies are created on earth in the womb of an earthly mother.  Two very distinct and separate creations, that are fused together into one at the time of our earthly birth.

Our individual spirits, being the creation of Heavenly Parents, are created in their likeness, meaning perfection of form, but not knowledge and experience.  These perfectly formed spirits are sent to dwell in tabernacles of flesh on earth.  The body, while necessary for eternal progression, is understandably flawed at its creation.  The earth our bodies are created on is composed of various materials and elements, all of which were subjected to the Fall of Adam and Eve.  These fallen materials are the only resources we have to create life in the physical form.  It is therefore understandable that a perfectly formed spirit of heavenly origins might find its way to earth, and come to rest in the body of a pre-mature baby, an autistic mind, genetically predisposed to breast cancer and addiction, or, even possibly, with incorrect attractions.  The combination of a perfect spirit of divine design and origin, with a body made of basic fallen elements is bound to create tension for the individual’s soul.

Noting this inspired combination of seemingly incompatible parts, its no wonder why we see the issues we do in our lives.  In terms of Same Sex Attractions, it becomes obvious after studying the above that this challenge is directly related to our bodies, and not our spirits.  People often will question why God would make someone gay or lesbian, just to teach and expound the doctrine of marriage, family, and children.  Obviously no God would create something purposefully against this doctrine.  It only stands to reason our bodies are the culprit.

My friend’s suggestion is that through sincere prayer and practice, the veiled spirit can rise up to take more control of the natural bodies we have.  With the spirit in control, there comes the possibility of further limited attractions, and greater peace.  Obviously, as long as the body remains in its imperfect condition, these attractions will never fully diminish.  It would require a redemption, a resurrection, and an atonement to fully propel the human body into perfection.  With great love, the Lord Jesus Christ made that sacrifice, atoned for the weakness of our bodies and spirits, and broke the bands of death, allowing our path to perfection to proceed, unobstructed.

It is through this perfection of the body, and the joining of the spirit, that we achieve a perfected soul, enter into the kingdom of Heaven, and find our much needed rest from trials, tribulations, and attractions.