Thursday, October 05, 2006

Another moronic BYU editorial...

At last, I think I have found it! A veritable Holy Grail of Latter-day idiocy! The following letter to the editor was published in the Y's daily rag--The Daily Universe:

Devotional Dancing Disaster

In response to the blasphemous performance of "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” in Devotional, we the aggrieved take this opportunity to express our disgust, revulsion and deep disappointment in the failing judgment of all those who took part in enabling this to occur.

Our sacred hymns are not to be the background music for provocative dancing they are to invite the Holy Spirit and inspire reverence in those who hear.

"Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” happens to be one of our favorite hymns. We have oft times been inspired by the beauty of the words and music, while pondering on our relationship with the Savior and our place in the universe. Performances of hymns are meant to turn our minds to God, to leave us renewed, and enlightened, in a quiet spirit of reverence. Applause should never be elicited in response to a sacred hymn. Hymns should never be used in a routine or setting to garner loud, rambunctious approval from a riotous crowd. This sacrilegious misuse of consecrated music has deeply offended many of our student body. We write this in hopes that nothing of this nature will ever happen again.

Heidi McLaren
West Row, England

Rebecca Fluckiger
Allen, Texas

(As much fun as it would be to make a few puns on Rebecca F's last name, I will resist the opportunity.) In any case, their comments were completely ridiculous. The performance they refer to was totally appropriate (modern dancing ain't my thing, but you know...)

In an effort to help them, I submitted the following (printing pending):

1) The dance itself was not "provocative" or inappropriate in any way. If it made you lusty, perhaps you could talk to your priesthood leader about it; that is not a normal reaction to such innocuous stimuli.

2) BYU Choirs (even CJ and the MoTabs) regularly sing such "consecrated" hymns and receive applause. It is really the only way to display appreciation and approval in such a setting. Perhaps your misconceptions about the evils of clapping come from the LDS practice of not applauding in the chapel. (I have personally seen the Prohpet himself clap during a performance. A shock, I know.)

3) You seem to imply that dancing draws one's mind away from the divine. Michal might agree, but David would not (2 Sam. 6:12-17). In the passage in question, the phrase "before the Lord," the sacrifices, and the linen ephod all lend a temple-like significance to his sacred dance. In fact, Brigham Young, before leaving Nauvoo, held a dance in the temple—and a sleep-over!

4) Asceticism, such as you exhibit, is more often a cause of pride than an indicator of righteousness.

I'm not sure they will respond; winnowing the thesaurus like they did must take some time. How else could they have come up with such revoltingly bloated prose?

Yes, it's the "Lord's University".

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