UVU 2013 Mormon Conference Experience
|Michael A. Hickman|
The study of Mormon history, culture and literature has been my utmost craving this semester. The unquenchable thirst I have to familiarize myself with my religious faith has at times been at the expense of my own personal hygiene. Showering has become a burden to me because books get wet. Sleeping has become a burden to me because my laptop's battery life is much longer than others. I cannot eat because that would mean that I could not teach and share what I have learned. My expenses to the chiropractor has doubled ten fold from hours of study and research at my desk. This expense is counterbalanced with the tenfold reduction of the visits from my therapist.
But today was a special day. I finally feel full. My quest for knowledge has reached its brim and I can now bask in the satiated warmth of my bed knowing that my pursuit will again commence the next morning. Today I had the honorific opportunity to attend Utah Valley University's 2013 Mormon Conference and to sit at the feet of the greatest Mormon scholars of our day.
James Faulconer, Claudia Bushman, Blair Van Dyke, David Holland, Richard Bushman, Grant Hardy, Royal Skousen, Grant Underwood, Richard Dilworth Rust, Brian C. Hales, Matthew Holland, David W. Scott and Boyd Jay Petersen, John W. Welch and Elder Jay Jensen are just a few of the many intellects that I was able to speak with and hear as they taught students on various Mormon topics. Though not all of the aforementioned were able to speak to the students, their presence added to the seriousness of the discussions and presentations.
Having said that, I will now require my friends, family members and other associates to refer to me as "Michael A. Hickman." My name has now shifted from the mundane to the sacred to show my authoritativeness which has been prescribed to me by my scholarly associates and hierarchical leadership friends in the LDS church. The following is a picture of me just 1 hour after my numinous encounter with the sacred. Though the spiritual glow that had surrounded my body has now faded, I can only prove my experience to you by the showing of the name tag I received that allowed me to enter the sacred scholarly space of UVU's Mormon Conference dinner.