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Hi I'm Benjamin

I'm a college student studying linguistics; I enjoy writing and public speaking—I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm a college student studying linguistics, and words are my favorite thing in the world. I can read pages out of the dictionary and love every minute of it. The fact that I can learn new ways every day to describe everything around me never ceases to amaze me. I love to read, which is probably what got me hooked on language in the first place. But I'll devour anything from philosophy to fantasy to tried-and-true literature. My favorite book changes depending on the month, the qualifications, and the person asking. (And while the Oxford comma is growing on me, I will still always put two spaces after my periods). In high school I learned Spanish and Latin, and in college now I'm learning Japanese and have dabbled in a bit of Welsh (which is seriously an awesome language). Hopefully that list will only grow longer as I get older and see more of the world. Shakespeare is one of my idols in that he just made up words as he saw fit, and many were readily canonized into the English lexicon. Unfortunately, people don't always accept my made up words as willingly, but that doesn't stop me from wielding language as creatively as possible (and if you like the words "pregression," "fissescence," or "ostrocentric," please feel free to use them as soon as you look up their roots and figure out what they mean). I also enjoy computer science, super heroes, soccer, and board games. And any description of me would be remiss without noting my Harry Potter house—I'm a Ravenclaw.

Why I am a Mormon

For as long as I can remember, I have known that the Church is true. So I guess the reason why I'm a Mormon is because this religion is the epicenter of truth in my world, and that is something I know innately and intuitively, and cannot deny. For as long as I have known that people can die, I've known that they will be resurrected through the Atonement of Christ; as long as I have known the guilt of wrongdoing, I have known the joy of repentance[ and as long as I have known I have an earthly father, I've known that I have a Father in Heaven who loves me beyond all comprehension. But just because I have always had a testimony does not mean that it has not grown over the years. Ever since I can remember, I've known the Book of Mormon was true. But I have come to know not only of it's truth, but of the blessings that come from reading it and of the power it has to change our lives. In high school, my daily scripture reading was at times lackluster: it was pushed aside in favor of homework or sleep or subtle busynesses that crept into the day. It doesn't matter why—the point is, it wan't happening. So during my senior year I made a point to read the Book of Mormon before starting on my massive pile of homework. And every instance in which I wouldn't have had enough time to finish my work, the next day was declared a snow day. We had thirteen snow days that year. I also know that Book of Mormon can transform us. There was once a time in my life when there were things I seriously wished to change about myself, things which, no matter how hard I tried, I could not rid myself of. So I knelt down on my knees and asked Heavenly Father if

How I live my faith

One of my favorite things about the gospel is hometeaching. I get a companion, and our job is literally to go and develop some really great friendships with people we might not other wise interact with. I mean, we are there to support and strengthen and bless them, but all of those things are secondary to loving those whom we teach. This past year in college, some of the most powerful spiritual experiences I had were during my hometeaching visits. My companion and I laid our hands on the heads of the six girls in the apartment we taught and we gave them blessings of healing and comfort, blessings for auditions and tests and homesickness and sick sickness. And they worked. We taught and we bore testimony and we opened ourselves up, and the Spirit and the love of Christ filled the room on a regular basis. And just as much we buoyed them up and strengthened them, they did the same for us. Hometeaching at it's finest is the purest manifestation of the gospel—because that is what the gospel is about: it's about service and selflessness and charity and people, not numbers and statistics; it's about lives and souls, and individual people united in the common struggle of overcoming individual trials and challenges and weaknesses so that we can all become closer to God. When we lose ourselves in love and service, that is when we find ourselves, and we find ourselves in Christ. Now it I am taking it one step further by going on a mission to Kobe, Japan. I get a companion, and our job is literally to go and develop some really great friendships with people we might not other wise interact with. I mean, our job is to teach the gospel and bring people to Christ, but that cannot be done without loving the people whom we will teach and serve. Because that's what the gospel—and missionary work—is about: it's about understanding and loving individuals as Christ would love them. And as we do that, all involved in the process grow closer to Christ together.