Being Prophetic: Bashing

On February 24, 2014 by MMM

Marvin AshtonDo you remember 1992? There was no Facebook, no Twitter, no Instagram, no Google+, no blogging. It was the Social Media stone ages.

That very year, in the April Conference, Elder Marvin J. Ashton, Apostle, stood up and gave a talk that has become more applicable in 2014,  than it was in 1992.

He talked about what he called “Bashing.” (I wrote a little about this last week here.)

“In the world today we are victims of many who use their tongues as sharp swords. The misuse of our tongues seems to add intrigue and destruction as the media and private persons indulge in this pastime. In the vernacular of the day, this destructive activity is called bashing. The dictionary reports that to bash is to strike with a heavy, crushing blow.

Such a popular behavior is indulged in by far too many who bash a neighbor, a family member, a public servant, a community, a country, a church. It is alarming also how often we find children bashing parents and parents bashing children.”

Anyone seen this activity lately? You don’t have to look very hard.

Read or watch this talk. The best part is not that he enters the discussion, but that he offers the solution to the problem.

Truly a prophetic talk, and worth a few minutes of your time.

If you want to read or watch it, click here: “The Tongue Can Be a Sharp Sword.”

Click back and let me know what you thought – (I think you are going to enjoy this.)

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15 Responses to “Being Prophetic: Bashing”

  • Sharon Haynie

    Excellent reminder!

  • It’s amazing that we haven’t learned that the Internet doesn’t create anonymity. It creates an e – paper trail. Everything we do on the Internet is logged, and backed up. It wouldn’t take much for somebody to display everything you’ve done from your IP, phone, email, FB, twitter, etc.

    Yet, people still think they are spreading their hate anonymously, so they spread it worse than they ever would in person.

  • I’ve really reflecting a lot on this lately, especially with all the back and forth about Frozen. It’s been sad to see the bashing going on both sides of the arguments. I’ve really been trying to stop because even if I think I’m on the right side of an issue, if I start bashing, I am a bully. And it won’t really matter whether my point of view or belief was right, because I’m not acting with charity. “Perhaps the greatest charity comes when we are kind to each other, when we don’t judge or categorize someone else, when we simply give each other the benefit of the doubt or remain quiet. Charity is accepting someone’s differences, weaknesses, and shortcomings; having patience with someone who has let us down; or resisting the impulse to become offended when someone doesn’t handle something the way we might have hoped. Charity is refusing to take advantage of another’s weakness and being willing to forgive someone who has hurt us. Charity is expecting the best of each other.”

    • MMM

      I would like to reinforce that having, and strongly standing for, an opinion is not the same as contention. We need to enhance our ability to “disagree without being disagreeable.” Truth and kindness are not mutually exclusive, and truth is much needed.

      • Completely agree. If you were referring to my comment, I definitely didn’t mean that we can’t stand for something or have an opinion. My issue is all the bashing I have seen in response to someone’s opinion.

  • I find those truly prophetic talks for TODAY are alway about 20 years away from the events. The talks today are for what is yet coming up, in some cases.

    • MJM

      I agree. And doesn’t that make the really clear, forthright, straight to the point talks of last Conference so scary!?! I’m terrified about what kind of world I’m going to have to send my babies into someday. Man! How I hope we’re sufficiently fortifying them!

  • Vicki Russo

    Excellent talk for our day!

  • A.

    What an incredible talk. I just bookmarked it on my browser so I wouldn’t lose it. I loved the quote, “The best and most clear indicator that we are progressing spiritually and coming unto Christ is the way we treat other people.” Wow! Talk about powerful. I think that would be a great family motto to place in the home (I’m sure Pinterest has some craft I could make with that quote).

    Sometimes I wonder if it is easier to show charity by making dinner for someone in need than it is to hold (and tame) a sharp tongue.

  • Dale

    I was really struck by this part of the message:

    “None of us need one more person bashing or pointing out where we have failed or fallen short. Most of us are already well aware of the areas in which we are weak. What each of us does need is family, friends, employers, and brothers and sisters who support us, who have the patience to teach us, who believe in us, and who believe we’re trying to do the best we can, in spite of our weaknesses. What ever happened to giving each other the benefit of the doubt? What ever happened to hoping that another person would succeed or achieve? What ever happened to rooting for each other?”

    I’m not much of a basher. I usually just leave mean thoughts unsaid. But I don’t feel like I’ve developed an attitude of wanting those I interact with to succeed; at least not yet. I’d like to be someone who roots for everyone and hopes that they will succeed.

  • Sharon

    I am always amazed when you do this MMM. Post things just when I am struggling with how to handle situations. I just had a situation at the high school I subbed at when some kids came into class-talking about Mormons this and Mormons that. I was disappointed in myself that I felt hindered by the setting of a public school that the most I could tell them that I was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints-also known as the Mormons. The room fell uncomfortably silent for a few moments. Then I went on with the class and they didn’t give me any problems. I felt like I had a lost opportunity, held back because I wasn’t certain that I could talk more about the church at school.
    This wasn’t the first time I had heard the mention of the topic of Mormons around this high school. I always feel a little like those in Lehi’s dream being taunted by the people in the big and spacious building.

  • Virginia

    “Let us open our arms to each other, accept each other for who we are, assume everyone is doing the best he or she can, and look for ways to help leave quiet messages of love and encouragement instead of being destructive with bashing.”

    Finally got around to listening to this talk (with the kids too). We had a great discussion. Thanks for the recommendation. :)

  • Jill

    As a freshman at BYU I went to one of Elder Ashton’s devotional addresses. I was knocked out by the Spirit of what he said and decided to stand in line to shake his hand. (Not my usual style, but I was SO moved by what he said). The line was quite long, so I just waited and moved up the line slowly. When it was my turn to shake his hand, I realized that I didn’t know what I was going to say. I shook his hand then blurted, “Elder Ashton, I just love you!”. He looked a bit surprised, smiled and I let go of our handshake. He then took my hand again, looked me in the eyes and said, “I love you too.” And I could feel that he meant it. Ever since that devotional and that sweet moment, I have hung on his every word and cherished each of his talks. I have probably memorized the talk you referenced here, but have been pleasantly reminded at each of the gems your readers have posted. For me, the part that was most meaningful and that I quote again and again is “Perhaps the greatest charity comes when we are kind to each other, when we don’t judge or categorize someone else, when we simply give each other the benefit of the doubt or remain quiet. Charity is accepting someone’s differences, weaknesses, and shortcomings; having patience with someone who has let us down; or resisting the impulse to become offended when someone doesn’t handle something the way we might have hoped. Charity is refusing to take advantage of another’s weakness and being willing to forgive someone who has hurt us. Charity is expecting the best of each other.”