Atonement - Love and the Law

The Talk Assignment

Starting off a new week to give a talk at Church on Sunday 29 April 2018. A phone call came from Brother Reed a week earlier, a counselor in the KL branch presidency, asking if I could prepare a talk on the topic of Atonement. Despite being busy,  I responded positively to accept the assignment.

I've been extra busy since the start of the year of the Dog and have been "..working like a "Dog" as the song goes. The main preoccupation was to finish my book but this dog is a multi-tasker. In reality, I focus only in doing one task at a time through batch processing of breaking up time in segments of a day to fulfill the needs of each of my physical, mental and spiritual needs

Despite being busy I still took on the assignment as I seldom refuse a Church assignment. Furthermore, the subject of Atonement is quite straightforward as it is a key feature of the Gospel of Jesus Christ or purpose for the Savior to be born in the Meridian of time. Little did I know that I would follow up with a whole blog post about this topic! Why? The simple answer is it stirred up My Consciousness which in simple terms means my awareness.

Recent events of my life that influence my Consciousness

Now I have discovered my awareness revolves around 3 domains of life I've grouped under Body Mind Spirit(BMS) where I later learned Plato, the famous philosopher of ancient Greece, identified the tripartite soul of Man as one with Appetites, Reason & Spirit. I was just a Chinaman from the East who named the domains BMS in relationship to my 3 journal blogs I had started : Familylane(Body), Fastlane(Mind) and Spiritlane(Spirit). I was inspired to draw 3 columns with brief word descriptions in each column on a napkin while I was in a New York City cafe with a friend in the year 2005 journalized here.

So what are my Body Mind Spirit activities that have kept me extra busy since the start of the year? Fortunately, I learned how to use a camera from my youth to produce photos which previously were on paper that have become digital today. They are fast visual reminders of the myriad of activities that I find myself involved in to be able to recall them later without having need of any written notes nor a proper camera too as our phone is also a camera today! A picture indeed paints a thousand words and my journals link events with themes adding a sharing of my feelings and thoughts from my Heart and Mind as well. It is my world of Perception, Action & Reflection, a way to achieve PAR Excellence whenever possible through what is called our Consciousness.

So here are some examples with snapshots of the activities of my life under the 3 domains during the recent past months prior to starting this blog post and hence it's potential influence on my Consciousness revealed in what I write in my journals.

Body can mean...

Sweating it out in physical work or that stretches my physical self. I have been doing minor renovations and clearing/organizing stuff in the apartment to get it ready when all my children will gather in KL for a family reunion this October month.



Going out to do some physical exercises like cycling at the same time meeting the needs of upkeeping good relationships with other physical beings close to me like my son, creating positive emotions, which is kind of a multitasking activity in itself besides the exercise for health.



It can also be just going out to meet people or friends for real physically instead of doing it online in cyberspace alone that is popular today. An old friend and mother came to visit all the way from Washington DC where my late wife and I had visited them previously.



Mind can mean...

Writing my thoughts in my journals and developing my creative mind to connect with others using latest social media technology



Keeping up my reading of the volumes of books in my personal library of all kinds of topics and book sizes and the unlimited library of online books and latest researched information.


Taking the challenge to write a book on Human Consciousness based on my own, created with deep and wide personal experiences and researched knowledge of history, religion, philosophy, the sciences and even technology from the time of the "Abacus to the Cloud" computing era of today. 



Spirit can mean...

Fulfilling church callings like missionary work for the Church or teaching a class to help share the Gospel with others, following the laws of the land, to non-Muslims only. (From our 12th Articles of Faith)



Accepting an invitation from a Muslim organization building inter-faith relationships in the country by attending a dinner and talk session on the Miracles of the Koran.



Paying respect to those who have passed away and doing family history research



Influences from my Consciousness, that includes other experiences this year, in preparing my talk:

The need to give a talk at Church always causes me to pray and read scriptures to give me the Spirit to cover the topic of Atonement I was to speak on. I try to make it a unique presentation in sharing the same Gospel principles already taught often at Church. I would remind myself not to be stuck with routines but follow the Savior's teaching in the story of Martha being too busy with her routine in the kitchen of preparing meals instead of spending precious time with the Savior when he was in their home as her sister Mary was doing whom the Savior praised.

At the start of the year 2018, President Monson passed away When President Nelson was officially called as the new Prophet, I watched the live press conference held for the media to meet the new First Presidency of the Church and to allow them to ask questions. This was extraordinary as no Prophet of our Church had done this before when newly called to this sacred position of leadership for the world as a representative of the Savior Jesus Christ! It was astounding to hear the first question of a reporter from the Associated Press thrown to President Nelson that was related to the standing of the Church on LGBT issues meaning the lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgenders collectively.

One can view the recorded live press conference here, especially on the part when this first question was asked as mentioned earlier. I have timed the video to start just before the question was asked. President Nelson gave a good response followed by his counselor President Oaks but when President Nelson put out his two hands to symbolize the need to balance the love and the law, it created an impression in me not to forget these two words of the "Love and Law" of God. For clarity, I even searched the Church lds.org website with those two words to find President Oaks article in Nov 2009 on the topic including this video published in Oct 2016. This is my habit of a person who


In clearing house in the apartment, I opened a drawer that had my wife's old documents to find the two larger envelopes containing the old letters we had exchanged frequently early in our courtship, seen as the stack of smaller envelopes above, that started when we first met in Singapore again after my mission in June 1982. My letters to her are on the left pile while hers to me are on the right distinguished by the different national stamps on the envelopes.

I was aware that she had kept all our letters as shared in the year 2005 when I started recording our courtship experience in this same blog found in the following relevant posts: My post with copies of the first page of our letters to each other with her response in her own blog at Retro 1 and Retro 2.

Here is my spiritual experience to share from the letter :


With the stack of our correspondence letters of ours that discovered, I also found her paper note journals dated 16 June 1982 which I was never aware of as they were not shown to me. It did help me realize why she had so quickly fallen in love with me! She was depressed for not being able to qualify to enter the school of architecture at the prestigious National University of Singapore (NUS) which was her dream career/work for herself. The letter explained that she had slacked in her studies due to a puppy love relationship with a non-member named Jeff who didn't go to Church nor liked her for doing so. Now she did mention to me the name of Jeff as a past boyfriend but I didn't realize it caused her so much stress and when she didn't qualify for her dream opportunity of the future, she felt she was a failure, having never failed to achieve all the things she would target and work hard to achieve.

She got depressed and wrote to her brother Roy already gone to the US to study, to her other brother Clayton in Australia and even to her Branch President named Mark Israelson to share her disappointment at herself, saying she had never failed before to achieve anything she had aimed and worked hard for in the past. I didn't read the actual letters she had sent off but she was diligent to write in English a draft of what she was going to write in each letter later. This was probably due to the fact that she was being more a Chinese educated student of the school of Hwa Chung with less proficiency or confidence in the English language I suppose. Maybe it was just her meticulousness like I am too in keeping documents for future references to write my Chronicles of Life!

The keyword that I marked in her writings was the word "repent" in the sentence saying "I didn't truly and sincerely repent of my sins, serious or minor alike."  To clarify, I know she didn't really commit serious sins and the context of the rest of the paragraph makes it clearer...."The Spirit of my heavenly father has slowly crept out of my heart. I didn't feel the love and peace in me while I'm performing my duties in my callings."

She was indeed depressed, not for a real failure in life that most of us would regard as a 'failure' as she did qualify to study in NUS for a social science course but not in architecture that was the desire of her heart and mind. She had also expressed in her writings to both her brothers overseas that she felt family and friends treated her negatively. In her own words, "When they asked me if I was making any plans for my studies, I felt that they were being insincere in asking and they were trying to insult me! That's why I thought of leaving Singapore for my studies in order to run away from all these problems, of course not forgetting the other reason was that I wasn't granted what I wanted in N.U.S.

Deep inside me, there was a voice which constantly whispered to me that God would never forsake me during my hours of adversity. And sure enough, I slowly got over with the whole thing and was able to regain my hope of living which was almost lost at one stage....... Perhaps all those trials and tribulations I've been through were meant to teach me humility and courage to accept failures and oppositions. If on the other hand, if things did not happen the way it had, I might not be able to meet this man whom I love so dearly.

I'm pretty positive this time this time that I'm loving the right man. His name is Chong Sun Fu and he's a returned missionary. Mom and Dad had met him before and they both liked him. We first met about two years back when he was about to go on a mission. Of course, I didn't fall for him then but I had a strange feeling in me when I first saw him outside the chapel door. I thought I met him somewhere before but I couldn't recall. And it wasn't quite possible that we had met before since he's a Malaysian and had then just returned from Australia after his tertiary education. In fact, this 'strange' familiarity he brought was kept a secret ever since then until now I reveal it to you. Could it be possible that I knew him before I came to earth? Anyway, I don't think it is necessary for me to find out the answer now, for time and the future will tell it. "     (Letter dated 13 July 1982)

The Spirit is taking me away from preparing a standard routine talk!

In preparing my talk and writing this journal post, I am grateful for the spirit of God that was promised to me when I was baptized and made the promise to keep his commandments : "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." (John 14:26)

Indeed I am grateful for this spiritual being that helps me remember all the things that help me stay close to the Savior and be careful of the idolatry and temptations of various forms in our modern world, especially when they lead to addictive behavior involving a change in the chemistry of our internal physical bodies. I am humbled by the Savior's perfect love and sacrifice to feel that I must constantly be willing to repent of my mistakes and sins throughout my life as I know I am far from being perfect.

Finding the letters of my wife in Love with me and reading her expressions of the need to repent for little imperfections in her life humbled me. I had always known and had a personal testimony of the Savior's Love for us in his sacrificial act of Atonement in the Garden of Gethsemane that would enable Man's sins to be forgiven if only we are humble enough to repent of our sins.

I was given 15 to 20 mins maximum for my talk. I actually brought with me the two large envelopes and showed it to the congregation to give a show and tell introduction. It was to highlight how much love we had for each other in our short long-distance courtship expressed in our snail mails of old.


Contents of the Talk

I stated the basics of why an Atonement is necessary which is that the Love of Our Heavenly Father provided us a Savior, his only begotten Son, to suffer for our sins to enable us to return to live with him.

I expressed my feelings about the Savior and his life by relating a Sunday school Gospel Principles class I was asked to teach at the very last minute that happened on a recent Sunday before the talk. It happened as the number of Chinese speaking attendees had filled the room so the Mandarin-speaking teacher asked me to teach the English lesson of the same chapter 11 on the Life of Christ found here.

Luckily there were only a few English speaking class members as about halfway through the class, as I was teaching more from my heart than reading the manual, I couldn't control my emotions as tears started flowing down my cheeks. I had to excuse myself to the Men's restroom and asked one of the Sister Missionaries present to take over for me momentarily to return after I cleared my nose etc!

As I write this journal, adding the link to the online lesson manual above, I read this instruction to the teachers to know that maybe my reaction in teaching the lesson was appropriate. See the screenshot extract of what I mean:


I guess teaching the lesson on the Life of Christ to the class from my heart with some quick references from the manual had brought back all my feelings of my past experiences about learning of the Savior's atonement!

I didn't have much time given to me to fully share about what I knew and experienced about the Atonement and was impressed to share a critical knowledge I had gained as early as in 1980 when I was a new convert to the Church. The full-time missionaries in my University town of Geelong Australia had shared with me a cassette tape by Cleon Skousen of his experience in his study of the scriptures when he was a young missionary in London in 1920s, inspired by his Mission President, John Widsoe, who later became an Apostle. He was a very good motivational speaker who taught me why Jesus had to suffer all the pain when an all-powerful loving God or Heavenly Father could have merely forgiven the sins of Man by himself in the last days of judgment!

I spoke about the essence of the reason which may help some new members or even old members who might not know the true reason as many are only touched by the love of the Savior who was willing to pay the sacrifice to save us from the punishment for our sins. As I have always been a logical thinker, analyzing all types of principles or reasoning, I could understand what Cleon Skousen was explaining which was something I knew no Pastor or Preacher of any other Church would know why it was necessary and that an all-powerful God could not have done it to let his only begotten son whom he loved greatly to suffer instead for the blessing of all his children.

A miracle that happened after giving the talk that qualifies to be added to my Story of Seven special journal post is my discovery of Cleon Skousen's audio recording online here.  In the audio, we also hear Cleon Skousen mentioning that it took him 7 years of studying the scriptures to figure out what is shared in his audio presentation which is supported by the scriptures he quotes found below. I used the audio recording to create the video below which uses all the photos Shuan, our returned-missionary 2nd son who served in London mission in 2016-18, had sent home weekly to all the family members:

Play the video to hear the motivational talk and view the photos sent home by Elder Shuan Chong in his 2 years of service.

The References shared by Cleon Skousen in his talk:

Mark 14:36

Matt 26:39

Luke 22:43

Luke 22:44

Matt 26:42

D&C 19:15-19

Act 4:12

2 Nephi 2:14

D&C 93:30

D&C 93:29-30

Abr 3:19-23

Documentary History of the Church DHC Vol 4 Pg 519

D&C 93:33

Journal of Discourses JD Vol 7 Pg 2

Abr 4:9,10,12,18

Helaman 12:3-18

Jacob 4:6

1 Nephi 20:13

D&C 88:38-42

D&C 29:36

Alma 42:13,22,25

Mormon 9:19

Alma 34:9

2 Nephi 9:7-9

Alma 34:11

Alma 34:15-16

D&C 19:15-16

D&C 45:3

Alma 34:14


Summary of this post started at 6.26am 29 July 2018

I have always been a busy bee in my life, from a slow starter in education to accelerate to a level where I was winning prizes or rewards but that isn't the most important thing to me.

It was getting to meet the Elders who knocked on my door to share with me the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ in the final year of my tertiary education. Yesterday, Saturday was a full day to me and I could simply make a quick post in Facebook to share my fulfilling day embedded below:



I was requested by Elder Montague, representing the missionary couple in charge of Public Relations to cover this visit of Professor Dr. Brenda Hong. I got there just past 3pm to set up my camera equipment and microphone to record completely on video a couple of her sessions on Saturday afternoon which will be most likely shared on my blog posts where long videos or writings are always shared while links to it can found on Facebook for anyone interested to see longer videos and my commentary such as this one.

She had written a book with the title Failing Up! She shared her story which I may share later below when I have edited the video. I had already purchased her book pdf version for USD9 online earlier before she arrived. She shared her story of tough times to be who she is today and I was thrilled to know she had started writing journals of her tough life of an abusive father and poverty in Singapore to enable her to write a book. Of course, without my journals, my planned book entitled  "My Consciousness, from the Abacus to the Cloud" for a world audience, particularly the US and China, would not be possible.



So I was thrilled to hear her story shared personally in a fireside presentation at Church. Having read her book, I like to quote a little part of how she and her team won a debate where they were in the finals with a topic, "The Head should rule over the Heart."  Personally, I love debates that started in the school days but I didn't focus on debates as my main school activity as I wanted to be an all-rounder so I spent a lot of my free time to be active in all kinds of sports including Karate. Then I was also a social person going on at first bicycle and later motorcycle trips with friends, fishing and camping where I didn't stop these interests throughout my lifetime! I even joined the Toastmasters International club as a family man with 6 children to enjoy public speaking and sometimes debate competitions as a variety. 

Here are excerpts of what Babara wrote in her book starting at the bottom of page 163 :

"Mrs. Tan announces the final topic: “The head should rule over the heart. We’re the opposition team.”
You wouldn’t think such a simple sentence could arouse such endless discussion, but it does. We gather immediately after school at the usual spot in the community

center and hash the subject inside out. Alvin, who prides himself on being a rationalist, presents a compelling argument on how and why this is true.
“Men use their heads more, and women use their hearts more,” he contends, “it’s obvious that it’s safer to rule by the head than by the heart. We’re sure to lose now.”
Nora doesn’t look convinced, and neither do I. “Alvin, in every argument, there’s always a
loophole,” I assert. “We must find the flaw and use it.”
Alvin shoves his books in his bag. “Everyone knows the head is more important. We’re doomed. This is an unfair question.”
No way. I refuse to believe we’re going to lose. The head should not rule over the heart! We have come so far, beating five classes in the last month. Surely that says something about defying the logic of the head.
We believe we can win. We must win. I won’t accept failure since the start of the debate and it sure is not going to happen in this final round. We put in hours every afternoon to prepare. I pray and hope that we won’t make fools of ourselves. No matter how we’re going to stumble, we must at least land on both feet and do our class proud. What does that tell us? Our passion is stronger than our brains combined. We’re not about to give up on this last question no matter how uncertain things appear.
“We stand a good chance for a fair battle,” I reaffirm. “Now think, think, think. How can we turn the argument around in our favor?”
I do what I can and write out the research for each team member. I go through all of their pointers to make sure we’re all on the same page. Every day, we read, write, dispute, compare, argue, and role-play. We eat each other’s lunches and drink each other’s soda. We laugh, we yell, and we get on each other’s nerves. These are unforgettable afternoons and evenings, and we feel ready to take on the opposition.

On the big day, as each team walks onstage in the assembly hall, the roar of applause soars through the crowd. We sit tall in our seats and brace ourselves for the battle of our lives as the voices of the underdogs. We want to prove everyone wrong.
As the moderator calls my name, I’m nervous, anxious, and excited all at once. I try to hold myself together and deliver a well-rehearsed argument full of audacity and eloquence.
“Our heart … is the center of our soul … Our heart sees more than our head or … even our eyes. Our heart listens, whereas our head only hears … often what we want to hear. When we listen to our head more than our heart, we’re more likely to make mistakes and hurt someone or get hurt. If we let the wisdom of our heart guide us, we are a better people overall.”
The crowd cheers.
“It’s a far more superior ethic to let our heart tell our head how to live. Anything short of that, and we’re not true to ourselves. Our head gets clouded with too much logic, too many predictions, decisions, motives, worries, rationalizations, and judgments. Just look at the blunders men make when they don’t ask for directions.” The crowd roars again in support.
The audience laughs. The opposition team can’t hold themselves back, and they laugh, too.
“Mankind has, in the past, allowed logical inclination to rule over moral intuition. That’s why people suffer, children get hurt, and tyrants abuse. Life is dangerously uncertain when left to the head. If we have to choose one organ over another to sustain our lives, I believe we’re better off choosing our heart over our head.”
With full gusto, I argue every opponents’ points. I can hear cheers from my team on the side of the stage.

 And then it happens. Our awkwardly shy and unglamorous commerce major team defeats the all-time literature class.
We did it!
“Oh my, Barbara, once the four of you got started, there was no contest. You all spoke with so much passion, definitely from the heart. Congratulations!” Mrs. Tan declares the winner.
Each team member receives a trophy engraved with our names. This is the first time I have ever won anything, the first time I have ever held a trophy, and the first time I’m publicly recognized. I can hardly contain myself.
Weeks following the debate, the four of us are still treated like celebrities on campus. Our schoolmates on the third floor cheer us on for having beaten the snobs. Even the teachers begin to regard us in a new light. Of course, the second-floor losers refuse to concede even months after the debate. I don’t think they ever will.
I have never experienced such triumph. I understand now what it means to be a positive leader, to listen to each other, and to enjoy the fruit of team work. There is a sense of solidarity, purpose, and resoluteness."

I shared her writings above as it is about the Heart versus the Head or Feelings versus Thinking which is relevant to this journal post that highlights about Love and the Law. Love comes from the Heart and the Law is from the Thinking mind or our head!

A long post with and ending to justify my 'Long-Windedness"

My capability or intelligence and longwindedness in writing have a close relationship. I woke up at 4am thinking about why I have become a longwinded person and was it a good thing for me or not. With the capability of the Cloud computing, I can now summarize it below without my longwindedness to share it with a brother of mine who remarked I am longwinded, as many have expressed since I was the youngest kid in my family. However, he did say he read a link I've shared with him on WhatsApp about my walk through a park in Geelong Australia, being one of the cited miracles of my life that have become countless today, even in writing this post in my spiritual blog today. As I'm writing this, I am reminded that he was the only brother of my family who asked me in the car at the time when I first came back from Australia, why I chose to serve a voluntary 2-year mission which was shared with maybe some longwinded way to him. That answer was first written in my personal book journal and paper notes I have kept to this day but digitized it today to be found here. 

So here I go to use technology to explain in some short paragraphs why the Cloud of information out there reflects the positive side of longwindedness. Just click the links and the answers are there so I will save time to explain in my own words but the reader can appreciate the wise intelligent people out there, better than me, why the long answer is preferred! I will just share it with 3 points below:

1. In Quora, the latest teacher as an alternative to Wiki has this response as to why users of Quora prefer the long answers https://bit.ly/2LwHW1e

2. Read the writings of Oliver Emberton who is a Quora volunteer and observe the way he is developing his new business in social media as I am also https://bit.ly/2iX9agD

3. I found his name while researching about long answers or longwindedness in the link provided here. https://bit.ly/2LFsgbf Click his name given as a hyperlink after you have clicked my link given, if you have the patience to read down the Quora passages to appreciate how he answers the question  "How do I get over my bad habit of procrastination?"

With the three points shared above, I will always share this to anyone who may want to know why I was longwinded even when young to enable me to enjoy my life's myriad of experiences in family business or church read by clicking here.

Okay finished at 7.06am as per screenshot below if you trust me enough when I said I started the summary at 6.26am. Remember I am the Chartered Accountant who gave up false auditing to switch to a rising star industry of Information Technology! You can read my unique resume here.



Well when I made the screenshot after I typed 7.06am, the clock turned to 7.07am, a miracle to be recorded in my Stories of 7 you think?

Off to the JW Marriott to have a nice Sunday morning breakfast with my good friend visiting from Utah before we go to Church!

Note:  The above video of Dr Barbara Hong's talk was only inserted on 7 Aug 2018, coincidentally after I said goodbye to the same good friend from Utah mentioned above! We were walking around after dinner at the Pavilion and ran into a couple of our KL branch missionaries looking at the cookies. I took a quick snapshot of them with my friend! He leaves KL early the next morning!


I really live a full life every day with something useful to do always. (Click here to see what happened the next day.)Therefore with my small Sony camera that I carry around the world in my sling bag, I can easily capture visuals for my Chronicles that covers small and simple things which I do that becomes amazingly big and happy sometimes which may even lead to huge accomplishments of my life that I had never expected. I just know I must continue to Love others and do my best to obey the Laws given to me from a kind and loving Heavenly Father. I have an utmost appreciation for his only begotten Son who has touched my life for good, after learning of him from missionaries who knocked on my door in Australia that began this whole Spiritlane blog starting from here. I am no perfect person for sure and appreciate all the Son of God did to allow imperfect men like me to be forgiven for our sins or mistakes in life. This long post on the atonement that I could do because of listening to the talk on a cassette tape that was shared with me in 1979 and finding it again in 2018 online is a long wait and surely a blessing from on high like the stars in heaven to guide me while I am here on earth!


CLICK HERE to scroll to the top to see how my Consciousness enabled me to understand the role of the Love and the Law of God in my life.

By Small and Simple Things

From the Book of Mormon in Alma ch 37: 6-7 We read:

6 Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.

7 And the Lord God doth work by means to bring about his great and eternal purposes; and by very small means the Lord doth confound the wise and bringeth about the salvation of many souls.

I'm reaching a milestone age of 60 this year, 5 times my Chinese year of the Dog cycle in accordance to the Chinese Calendar. For thousands of years, a twelve-year cycle named after various real or mythological animals has been used in Southeast Asia. This twelve-year cycle, sometimes referred to as the "Chinese zodiac," associates each year in turn with a certain creature, in a fixed order of twelve animals, after which it returns to the first in the order, the Rat. The eleventh in the cycle is the Dog.

I am a Malaysian born Chinese who amazingly will publish my first book this year. Why I say amazingly is because I never thought of attempting such a challenging task all by myself before! There were moments in the past when I had talked to some experienced book writers and others whom I knew were more skilled than me in the art of writing as they were all well educated Americans. Some did manifest interest to co-write with me in my first book but it never happened! I was either too busy with the myriad of activities that I have always been involved in all my life or they had their own commitments too. Perhaps the timing just wasn't right for both parties.

Furthermore, when I felt the inspiration to write a book, I didn't even know what the book will be about except I was inspired to write two paragraphs of an introductory brief story for the book and could even suggest that the name of the book title will be "What If...?" When I was midway in my book project, I got the real title firm in my mind so that the "What if...?  changed to become the lead heading of each chapter that will have the words to follow according to the theme I've decided for each chapter. In retrospect, I did have a broad theme for the book which would be about how some major decisions of our lives are decided by beginning our thoughts with a "What if...?" statement. It is a way of making decisions following a critical thinking path to the future where one would simulate in one's mind what will happen based on a decision made at each junction of the path taken.

So what did the title change to? Well, for now, I like the sound of "My Consciousness, from the Abacus to the Cloud" where there might be just some minor changes later on, when new inspiration is received or when I am into the finer and final stages of the publishing my book to the World! I even have a draft of how the book cover will look like seen below:



The title of this blog post came about first without any content. It was a personal revelation of the scripture above that was given to me one morning and I just typed the title of this blog post without any content as I was busy with appointments and didn't want to forget. As my life is full of activities that take a few days each time to clear and get back to update my journal, I could fill it with content very fast, as I'm doing now when I find free time. Why I can do this is because of My Consciousness of everything that has happened to me, is happening to me as well as around me in the past or present that when I start to write, the links to related contents or information in my brain will flow to update my Consciousness easily. All I  have to make sure is that I have a focus that what I write is related to the subject of the post title, "By Small and Simple Things"

I can testify that in my book writing project, I felt confident of a successful ending because of my awareness of my past where I had always focused to do the small and simple things first, with diligence and even attempts of doing them perfectly when I haven't seen the fruits or rewards of my efforts yet. I would record my personal history with great detail, using words, photos and videos. In my research to write a book, I had to read a lot more beyond what I had read or what I had gained from my own personal experiences. I had to decipher new knowledge, logic and analysis of others, to classify where this new knowledge falls under, how is it related to other latest discoveries of the changing world etc. It got so intense that I needed to create my own personal index system which I could use to access the enormous pool of researched data to augment my mind anytime when needed. When I have a creative thought or personal revelation from on high, I also needed to link it to established truths or scientific discoveries already existing so that what I write and publish to the world can be authentic or make sense to others by using symbols or metaphors consistent with established disciplines. All this required consistent focus over time on the small and simple things.

No doubt it must be the influence of my father who would work nightly filing papers of data or information after coming back from his government day job that helped me understand the importance of doing small and simple things in order to achieve bigger tasks of the future. Another influential brother would have the habit of digging the garden to plant seeds of local fruits like the papaya, star fruit, rambutan, and others, to water and take care of them daily until they grew up to be mature trees to bear fruit that was enjoyed by the whole family. He taught me how to dig deep trenches to fill them with fertile soil and bury short sticks of sugar canes with buds on them. I would water them daily and in a shorter period than the fruit trees he planted, I would see the stems multiplying from the ground to shoot up to be tall stalks of sugar canes which were taller than my height! It was a sweet reward to harvest the output of my labors. I had learned in nature, by doing small and simple things, a great reward is the return.

The advantage I had in my era as an adult was the development of Information Technology where I didn't have to use paper files or filing cabinets. I had the computer and the hard disk to store information in words, photos and videos under compressed digital formats which could be indexed for future retrievals easily. I had also built up quite a large collection of books in my personal library to assimilate a lot of information and knowledge for my own human-computer which is my Mind! In a personal research initiative at my office in the year 2002, I started with a small team to discuss, discover and document growing information centered on the human mind, change theories and methodologies to help corporations improve the performance of their human resource. As the speed of the internet increased for faster access to the world wide web of information stored in the Cloud without the limitations of space or time, I knew it was conducive to write and publish my own first book, and subsequent ones too, with greater ease one day.

The practice of small and simple things led me to record my life acitivities in 3 separate different blog journals, intead of just one, named as Familylane, Fastlane, & Spiritlane. Strangely, a business trip to New York city after I started my 3 blogs led to more enlightenment or increased Consciousness. A French born Chinese lady I had just met in a cafe, introduced by another New Yorker friend, invited me to join her to visit her Taoist temple. At that instance, I began to write down on a napkin, under 3 columns, the significance of the Body Mind Spirit and how it linked with my blogs and what were perceived to be the end goals with different word descriptions in each column! A more detailed reproduction of the 3 column draft I made that day is found here.


By Small and Simple Things, in continuing to keep my journals to this day, I can quickly cover my life story below that gives clues to how my consciousness evolved over time, i.e. My Consciousness of what it is like to be a Human Being:

Here is an old pic of me and my first dog that followed me home one day when I was walking around the neighborhood. It belongs to an expat going home who felt it was best to leave the dog with me, since he seemed to like me to follow me home, instead of putting him in a long flight to his home overseas. One can see the big garden in the background of the photo of the government quarters we had lived in for many years. In this garden was where I was free to run with my dog, learn to plant and get to harvest the fruit of my labors. In the photo above, I was dressed to go to primary/elementary school.

I was a slow learner at school at the elementary level especially, not having a good memory so learning the Malay vocabulary was difficult. The school didn't have Mandarin classes which would be an even tougher language for me to learn as it isn't romanized nor is it a language that can be considered phonetic even though there is a separate Hanyu Pinyin system. The pinyin system was more to help in learning the pronunciation of the original Chinese character for those who don't know how to read Mandarin so is just a tonal system. Earlier I had thought the Chinese in the mainland were a proud people of having the longest civilization still intact and therefore didn't want to change their language completely to the phonetic system which other civilizations did like the Egyptians. I have since learned that since every Chinese character has a unique meaning, changing the language characters to suit a new phonetic sound/pronunciation system will lose the value of the original meaning in the original characters and may cause confusion when different meanings in the new character set end up having the same sounds or pronunciation.

Luckily I was the last batch in the Malaysian school system to have all my education in the English language. The reason being English is so widely spoken, it has often been referred to as a "world language", the lingua franca of the modern era. Also, much of the latest Science and Technology knowledge I had interest in was coming from the English speaking western world. Malay was more a national cultural language of Malaysia and is only a single subject for me at school that was romanized, it was really not too difficult for me to learn the language.

At Primary one level, my first year in school, I was still struggling with how to study though all were in English with only one Malay subject.  I didn't do well in the tests to miss the double promotion meant for those who scored well in the first year of elementary school. I changed to a better school in the fourth year where they had optional Mandarin classes. I tried a couple of years in it but constantly had red marks on my report card while the rest were blue. I didn't start earlier with the basics of the language like the others and couldn't catch up so I opted out after trying for 2 years. Today I have a desire to pick up the language again since there is no pressure of getting any report cards plus I can take advantage of the technology available today to teach me and help me practice at my own pace. Furthermore, I also have this strong belief that by small and simple things, with constant repetition or practice, I can still achieve all that I want to achieve! Plus we now have technology in our hands to assist us plus I can listen to Mandarin songs to catch the sounds and naturally remember them like in this song.

I plodded along progressing very slowly in my early years in school and someone in the family started giving me story books to read. They were the Enid Blyton series and I loved reading them, The Famous Five adventure kids who could solve mysteries in their neighborhood. I believe small and simple things like reading helped me to excel in English and the more I read, my intellect improved and so did my grades. I even won the first prize in English in Primary 5 in the year 1969.

How nerdy I looked haha. To win a prize was amazing as for many years I was just getting by but I had acquired the reading habit, the door to opening up my brain to acquire academic or intellectual capabilities of languages, and the beginning of logic and reasoning at the elementary level which became my strength. I never stopped progressing academically from that year onwards, climbing the ladder rung by rung from first increasing my position in a lower class to being promoted to a higher class to only drop in position among the brighter kids of the smarter class but eventually climbed the rung of class positions to get to the top five in the class of classified bright students which I always felt I wasn't one. I just knew the technique or system to study. I had always felt I wasn't as bright as the top students of the class but through my mastery of the basics, by small and simple things, it allowed me to figure out the answers or solutions to the questions or problems thrown to me from the academic or intellectual world.

Somewhere in my academic life, I found a balance between reading for examinations and reading to understand a topic or subject matter. I found that when I did the latter, I could remember what I read for a much longer time. I always worked hard to try to understand something I had to deal with. These were the small and simple things I developed a habit to do whether it was about reading something to understand it, fixing or repairing something and the most tricky is trying to help other people with their human problems of life which will require all my knowledge and experience in the Body Mind Spirit of the human soul. Interestingly, I had to be in New York City to realize something that was quite Eastern of the Body, Mind & Spirit of the soul. While doing my research for my book living in Singapore and Malaysia, I realize that Plato of ancient Greece influential for the foundation of Western democracies and culture named the tripartite nature of the Soul as Apetities, Reason & Spirit. Both parts of the world had the same foundational truths but merely used different words, text or symbols to describe the same thing.

In my younger age in the elementary level and below, I recall that my Body was not really physically strong or healthy. I remember having high fevers where the doctor had to come to visit me and I had to be sponged down to lower my body temperature. There were also periods of time when I had boils on my body that were painful in my knee or elbow joint areas and even on my buttocks to make it painful to sit down! Again, I had to resort to small and simple things to build up my physical health.

In later years, I would cycle a lot up and down hills in my neighborhood, carrying my dog with me to build up my leg muscles and stamina too with the joy of having my best friend with me. At middle school, I would learn to play every game with a ball such as basketball, soccer, rugby, volleyball, hockey etc.

Learning Karate, the Japanese martial arts reminded me to learn the small and simple things first before I learned to spar with another opponent that eventually led me to participate in tournaments in Singapore against another karateka from a foreign country. Just standing lowering my back in a horse riding stance posture in my early training with no punches or kick techniques taught to me until very much later is my recollection of how I started my training!  Deep breathing exercises, doing the katas or exercise steps like a dance, running 5 kms in the highland camps to build stamina and endurance were all very important small and simple steps to master before I could begin to practice sparring with another opponent!

Today, I still ride the bicycle, play any ball games if there is someone else to play with me, hike or run uphill too when there is time or opportunity. If not, I never forget the small and simple things like my timed exercises that can be done anywhere anytime consistently to keep me healthy and fit. Watching what I eat or drink, following the Word of Wisdom commandment of our Church since I joined the Church at 20 years of age are the small and simple things I would do that brought to pass great things like never needing to see a doctor for cures of headaches, fevers, coughs or other common sicknesses for the past 40 years or more.

After Form 5, for pre-University to enter an Australian University, I had to do the Australian High School Certificate HSC and as I had decided to become an Accountant, or I followed my father's advice to be one. I had to start afresh to study Accounting and Economics for the first time as I had come from a pure science stream in my secondary or middle school due to the emphasis of the government in our developing country. Again, I had to learn small and simple things again in a new field but due to the plasticity of my brain by this time, I had the capability to learn new principles within one year to qualify for entry to the tertiary level of education in Australia which at that time was free.

Before going to Australia, I would make a tour of Europe for the first time using all the money I had saved from Chinese New Year red packets plus money earned due to the one good brother who gave me cash incentives for every A grade I got for my examinations during my secondary years! Again, I had the opportunity to learn small and simple things to prepare myself for the biggest trip I've ever done to date in Dec 1976, traveling all alone by myself.

I came back safely from Europe and in Feb 1977, I was ready to leave for Australia to begin my University education. By this time, I had felt I had acquired enough basics in life of small and simple things to handle anything forthcoming in the future.


This is my University Campus in Geelong city in the state of Victoria. Deakin University was only incorporated in 1975 and I was a pioneer student in the first batch of 1977. I had top results in the Australian HSC Higher School Certificate exams that qualified me to go to any top universities in Victoria state like Melbourne Uni, La Trobe, Monash or even the famous RMIT college which was my first choice as they were well known in the field of Business and Accounting with a sandwich course of 1 year where students get to work in the industry,  making it a 4 year course instead of the normal 3 in all the universities. I was not aware that immigration policy then was not to allow foreign students to work so they gave me my 2nd choice which turned out to be a great blessing for several reasons.

Missionaries found me in this small city of Geelong, an hour's drive from Melbourne, who knocked on my door so that I could receive the most important message Man on earth could have. I choose Geelong city as my 2nd choice because my best friend from school who lived near our family home had an older brother studying at Gordon Institute of Technology, famous for architecture. (Our Singapore member Tan Su Kiong, former Patriarch is an architect trained from there.) The brother of my good friend turned out to be an excellent person to orientate me to enjoy the nature of Australia to bring me out to the seaside in summer to snorkel, the resorts up in the mountains in winter to ski and I learned he was very smart too.  He was the fastest reader in South East Asia, did a double degree of Computer Science as well as Architecture, who must have influenced me to do a double major in Accounting and Computer science within my 3 years of undergraduate studies at Deakin, formerly known as Gordon Tech.

I like to point out at this time that the blessing of learning computer science was foundational to allow me to type on my computer today and learned by 'Small and Simple Things' how the future could change because of this Information Technology. I thought accounting was detailed enough to keep track of dollars and cents. However, when I started to learn programming languages, higher and lower levels like assembly language, my understanding of how the 1 and 0 of the binary system learned in my school days was related to computers created an "Aha" effect in me! I didn't realize though that the technology would change my life as much as the restored Gospel theology did. The Gospel only came to my life in the last year of my University life but thanks to the LDS Church, my learning never stopped and the impact on me was definitely far greater than my University education of course.

Thanks to computer technology that has never stopped advancing till today, I am able to use it to augment my mind that admittedly isn't that great! I am grateful to have spent time, doing "Small and Simple Things" to learn this technology over the years to feel as if I have a young mind today that can use social media for good purposes instead of just passing on fake news of all kinds found today especially in the word of politics and making quick money! As you're reading this post in my Spiritlane journal, it is appropriate to quote the scripture and expound more on how it had helped me in my life to achieve many things that seemed impossible for one with an ordinary brain like mine, even a dog's brain? haha


In short, my consciousness tells me, as I sit in front of my computer today that I am greatly indebted to both the Computer Technology and the LDS or Mormon Theology to have given me an incredible or amazing life on the principle that "By Small and Simple Things" that I had studied and acted upon, "are Great Things Brought to Pass".


In the final year of my university, I was the happiest man in the world, I felt so as the physical health of my Body was at a peak and I felt my Mind was adequately curated with sufficient basics in small and simple things to tackle the world. I had mastered how to break down sophisticated things to its simple parts. Little did I know I was still lacking in one area of my life. I had to learn the small and simple things of the Spirit part of life!


Live comment while finishing this post 3pm Friday 30 March 2018: "Often times, I would just kneel down to say a prayer to thank our Heavenly Father for my daily blessings. I would open the scripture to read any messages he has for me. Today is Easter Friday and I am anticipating spiritual things to happen, personal revelations to me, especially as this, is the weekend when our Church will have our Annual General Conference broadcast live to the world through our Church website www.lds.org I look forward to what our world prophets and apostles have to say. So here is what I read when I thumbed open my old scripture that has previously marked passages in it:"


End of my live comments shared on Facebook.
Tears flowed in my eyes. Read particularly the whole of Doctrine and Covenants Section 8 where I have the most passages marked by a color pencil done a long time ago as this is a very old manual scripture I had been using before the technology can allow me to read the same chapter online today by clicking here.  Why did the tears flow? I was writing this post accessing My Consciousness to fill it with content relevant to the title that was chosen for me as explained at the top of my post. If you were able to read the chapter 8 of the scripture online and understand what I have written above about my experience in writing my book, that it wasn't clear in the beginning what I was to write about but I had faith in continuing to do the small and simple things to later find that the Lord did bless me in my heart and mind with the Holy Ghost to be able to write. Oliver Cowdery in the scripture was assured that the Lord would help him and if you read the referred scripture with the influence of the Holy Ghost, then you will know the state of my heart and mind better as well as the reason why I became a little emotional, the Body part of me. (My Body-Mind and Mind-Spirit perspective of the human being or soul is shared more in two parts of my blog posts starting from here.)

Yes, my life has several experiences of a flow of natural tears, sometimes occurring uncontrollably in embarrassing public moments! It happened again recently when I was asked to teach the Gospel principles class in English on Sunday a week before Easter by Sharon Wong, She is the one who usually teaches it but she was starting a Chinese Gospel principle class so she requested me to take over the English class. I was to teach the chapter on the Life of Christ, Chapter 11 from the Gospel Principles manual. In the middle of the class, I had to excuse myself to go to the Men's room to clear my wet eyes and blow my nose! Luckily the class was small. On this Easter Sunday, the class numbers were more than doubled for me to teach on the Life of Christ and I held well! Maybe I had drained all my tears away already. During the time of writing this blog post, my tears did flow when I was spiritually flowing with inspiration in my heart and mind due to the Holy Ghost helping me to express myself in a flowing manner here. I even found an old talk referring to D&C Section 8 again with the title, "The music of the gospel is the joyful spiritual feeling that comes from the Holy Ghost. It brings a change of heart."

You see, the body and mind created by God play an amazing role in keeping "Small and Simple Things" in our Heart and Mind so that the Holy Ghost can easily pull out these memories at the right time to bring us joy that can turn to tears even! Instead of just tears, I use the energy of joy to create better writings, photos, and videos! I remember in the Christmas Season of 2016, I was in a joyful mode and created this video from my apartment studio, not studio apartment haha. It is one place where I find conducive to connect to my Heavenly Father through the Savior and where much of my creative writing and works are produced for reasons expressed in this video:


FASTFASTFORWARD

Let me fast forward my life, to review what happens when I believe in doing small and simple things, with pics below in this journal to finish it in the shortest possible time. I do it by using social media technology links to my journals that I have patiently written down over the years, line upon line, precept upon precept, just the way I learned the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ and tested it personally as one who believes in Light and Truth. 

Small and Simple Things in my journal here

Small and Simple Things in my journal here

Small and Simple Things in my journal here

Small and Simple Things in my journal here

Small and Simple Things in my journal here

Small and Simple Things in my photo journal here

Small and Simple Things in my journal here

Small and Simple Things in my journal here



Happy Easter 2018 everyone!


I am celebrating this Easter weekend by collecting comments from others on facebook to share it here below my post. How can you share your comment? Just click the 'See More' below or the blue Facebook icon and see what happens.

I look forward to reading your comments which will later be manually added to this blog below my comment. It's Glorious!

***************************
***************************





To be continued as you key in your comments while I will also watch the live Church General Conference online this weekend.....

Wow, it's past 2.30am Monday morning in Kuala Lumpur on 2 April 2018 where Utah time is 12.30pm Sunday afternoon when I just finished watching a slightly delayed live recording playback on the internet of the Easter Sunday morning General Conference!  Note I wrote above "Today is Easter Friday and I am anticipating spiritual things to happen, personal revelations to me, especially as this is the weekend when our Church will have our Annual General Conference broadcast live to the world through our Church website". You can zoom above to my statement by clicking here. You can also click here to see I had posted a copy of it on my Facebook timeline as evidence I was doing my blog post live over the weekend with confidence that even before the General Conference started, I typed or declared to the world that I would get spiritual things or personal revelations.(by the power of the Holy Ghost is what we Mormons believe.)

I will now need time to record a good number of things that happened over the weekend that can be classified as spiritual things or personal revelations to me. So much could happen in just one Easter Weekend!!! I have to wait for the Church website at lds.org to convert the Sunday morning General Conference session live video to individual videos for each speaker so that I can embed the relevant ones in this post with my comments on how they relate to what I've shared on this post so far.

To be continued..... (and please post your comments as requested above about Easter, even if the weekend is already over.)

Monday 2 April 2018

Over the weekend, besides collecting comments from friends around the world about Easter, I also started collecting memories or impressions I would receive over this special weekend and can today summarize them below to conclude, as expected from the past experiences of my life, that "...by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise. And the Lord God doth work by means to bring about his great and eternal purposes; and by very small means the Lord doth confound the wise and bringeth about the salvation of many souls."

Click the photos below to watch the video recording of each speaker, to witness that what I had boldly predicted above before the start of the live Annual General Conference on my anticipation of spiritual things to happen, personal revelations to me did indeed occur!

Wow, if you click the photo image of Dalin H. Oaks above to watch the video of his conference talk, at 2.50 mins from the start of the video, he said "This morning I felt to use as my text, Alma's teaching to his son Helaman recorded in the Book of Mormon. By small and simple things are great things brought to pass."


I generally would pick to listen to the President or senior apostles of the Church first when I do not have time to listen to the entire conference. I somehow chose Elder Wilson, unfamiliar to me, to be amazed to hear his entire talk about a Miracle that happened on a ship during the Korean war. My use of the more politically correct word of "Spiritual things to happen" actually meant "Miracle like things to happen" and Elder Wilson's whole talk was on the miracle that happened on the US Navy ship.

President Nelson talked personally about his life and experience in receiving personal revelation of the Holy Ghost through his heart and mind. Click here to listen to the relevant part of the video that I know is a personal revelation to me as per my quotation of D&C chapter 8:2 shared above before the conference began.


Imagine living in a time when I'm in Melaka meeting with a Muslim group by invitation and while driving back to Kuala Lumpur, I could watch the General Conference on my phone to be surprised of Elder Gong's call as an Apostle of the Lord whom I had met with personally 4 years earlier by chance when I was travelling from KL to Singapore with our miracle convert from the 80's shared in the SpaceTime-Travel section of my post here.

My Summary


I started this post on Friday before the General Conference commenced, using all my skills or know how to express my life's story supporting the truth of the scripture of Alma's teaching to his son Helaman about "small and simple things". This was one of the scriptural revelations given to me recently. I get them very often and sometimes forget to note it down or scan the scripture which I may do often as part of the record-keeping habit of my life, just like the way Accountants keep all documents as supporting evidence to the final financial reports they produce! My style of writing my journals seem to follow this trend as evidence or my testimony to others that Heavenly Father is real. I can feel the Savior's love and the Holy Ghost effect is well explained by our new prophet President Nelson shared on this shortened video. I made a shortened version of the video provided as a link to click to make it clearer that my impression of what I hear and feel from the speakers are clear indications of spiritual things or personal revelations to me by the power of the Holy Ghost.

I had mentioned above about the old conference talk I found that explained about D&C chapter 8 verse 2 especially,"Yea, behold, I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart." I found it using search in LDS website which is well indexed to link to other relevant talks etc thus creating a flow of understanding for me. Same way as I write my book, I needed to index all related researched information so that my writings will flow more smoothly or logically when it is presented. Click here to listen or read that old conference talk to find that it is beautifully or spiritually well expressed about the different effect of the Heart compared to the Mind, "We learn the dance steps with our minds, but we hear the music with our hearts. The dance steps of the gospel are the things we do; the music of the gospel is the joyful spiritual feeling that comes from the Holy Ghost. It brings a change of heart and is the source of all righteous desires. The dance steps require discipline, but the joy of the dance will be experienced only when we come to hear the music."

If one reads or listen to the entire video, one will learn how to create an optimal environment in one's home especially as a parent with maybe a rebellious child or an older child still in the adolescence age not fully living according to Gospel standards that parents may desire. He or she needs to hear the beautiful music with the heart which is the source of all righteous desires. This is the power of the Holy Ghost that I know of and am reminded again by personal revelation given to me that I had anticipated in this General Conference. My cup is full and I can continue to dance toward my goals without feeling the stress of just discipline alone to do the small and simple things that we all need to do but often neglect. Yes, we need to hear the music and dance or flow with it!

If you watch the video of Elder Gong's short talk as the new Apostle, he started by relating how he puts his children to sleep and I will end this post repeating his cry of "Hallelujah!" with this video.


Related Events over the Easter Weekend :







CLICK HERE to scroll to the top to see all the Small and Simple Things I write about in my life!