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Hi I'm Nathan Tolman

I'm a Mormon; a student in this mortal life, learning all that I can. I am an aspiring writer, soloist, and artist -- a creator.

About Me

I love to understand and to create. I have enjoyed studying classic works, such as Euclid, Aristotle, Thoreau and Emerson, and intend to continue to read and study the Great Books, and other notable and good works. Weak though I am in their particulars, I love math and science. Architecture, engineering and flight are areas of particular interest for me; I am considering any of them as part of my chosen work, so I can design and construct my future home. Language, with all its beauty and complexity, is also among my interests. I am attempting the creation of several languages, as a project to help me understand its various aspects. Russian, Latin, Hebrew, Greek, Spanish and Arabic are my favorite languages, though I don't know any of them well, yet. The sound of Russian and the orthography of each language are most attractive to me. I love to sing, having only recently discovered that I could. I sing in three choirs (high school choir, ward choir, and with the Salt Lake Choral Artists). Solos are a point of strength for me, and I cherish every opportunity I have to sing them. I am working toward finishing several fantasy novels, and enjoy reading the works of Brandon Sanderson, Howard Tayler, Dan Wells, Robison Wells, and Orson Scott Card. I draw intricate mazes (http://randumbjunk.com/pictures/surfermaze.jpg) and hike. My favorite mountain is Lone Peak, in Utah. I am fascinated by so much: oceans, atoms, nations, etc. In short, I am not a fan of character limits. =-P

Why I am a Mormon

Above all else, I am a member of the Church because of the confirmation of the Spirit. I have felt the Spirit burn truth in my heart, and that strength has upheld me through terrible tribulation, and has kept me going when I wanted nothing more than to cease to exist. I have read the Book of Mormon several times, and each time have found new and deeper meaning in its verses. Always there is more truth to be had; always there is an answer to my most difficult questions. For comfort, for hope, for knowledge, for spiritual strength, I can return to the Book of Mormon and everything becomes right again. I am a Mormon because I believe in Christ, and I believe that His church is restored again on the earth through the Prophet Joseph Smith. I have a testimony of this more powerful than any of the physical senses; by the Spirit is the truth of all things made known, and this is the source of my witness. In addition to my testimony, I see the great good that is brought about by the Church's welfare programs, and the principles the Church teaches and encourages, and I know that this is something I can support. It is the true Gospel of Christ going forth to bless all nations, as applied by good people, however imperfect. The principles upheld by the Church are eternal in nature and will support any who follow them. Honesty, integrity, sexual purity, education, virtue, and so forth. Encouraging people to love one another, to forgive and connect and build to greater things -- this is a good work. And though there are many churches which do great good, this is the only church on the face of the earth with the power and authority of God's priesthood, and living prophets and apostles to give modern revelation. I know that God's power is manifest in priesthood service, by worthy priesthood holders. I have a testimony of the living prophet, Thomas S. Monson, his Counselors, the Twelve Apostles, and all the general authorities. I know the Gospel is true, and the Church with it.

How I live my faith

Most of my effort has been toward aligning myself with the principles and standards of the Gospel. I struggle with an addiction, and several other debilitating issues. Nevertheless, I serve wherever able, helping neighbors move, helping to place sod, and so forth. I am a hometeacher with my father, and we have two families we visit and help, however we can. We take turns setting up appointments (we generally meet at least once a month to share a Gospel message and see if there's anything we can do for them) and teaching lessons. I've found I'm much better at teaching lessons than setting up appointments, and choose this whenever possible. In that same line, I participate in our sundayschool and priesthood classes. Generally I try and start as many discussions as possible, because I think we all benefit from going a little deeper, and thinking and feeling a little more. I'm learning to be a good friend, and to reach out to others. In school, I have had the opportunity to get to know many wonderful people, and more and more I long to be able to connect with and help everyone I have a chance to. This early period in my life is one mainly of preparation. I am striving to become stable, self-sufficient, and educated, so that I will have the means to support my own family and those around me. I have, at times, felt as though I needed to help everyone all through the world -- correct political institutions, ensure everyone is fed and clothed and educated, and so forth. (side-note: not through redistribution of wealth, but through the teaching of correct principles). I now realize this is a distraction. I don't have the means to help everyone in the world. It's out of my power. But I do have the means to help my family, my neighbors, and my friends. So, that is where I will focus, and leave the Lord to do the rest. In the meantime, I am focusing on graduating high school and preparing to serve a mission, both in study and in discipline, looking for a job to pay for it.