As men come to embrace their Heavenly Mother and understand the Heavenly Mother, that it actually changes for them their relationship with the women around them.
And so if we know that we are to live in divine partnership, that we know that this is essential for achieving the highest degree of glory, then that means that we as women and men, both need to understand how to connect with the other.
Hey, everyone. Welcome back to another episode of Saints and Scripted. Today we are joined with the wonderful MacArthur Krishna. We’re super excited to have her on the show again. We had her on, I think, two years ago at the very beginning of COBIT, but it was over like video, so it’s awesome to have her in person. And also, in honor of Women’s History Month, this is even more a perfect topic because we’re going to be talking about Heavenly Mother, so we’re super excited. Macarthur, do you want to just let our viewers know a little bit about you and then we can get into this topic?
I can, but that’s probably the least interesting thing to talk about today real quick. I was raised with my mother entering my bedroom singing the Cougar fight song to wake us up to do chores in the morning. So there’s not a chance I was going to go anywhere other than BYU. I went to BYU twice for undergraduate and Masters, both especially the friends and internships that I made there have been life enhancing for the last 30 years. So that’s a good stead. I was a businesswoman, owned my own business for more than a decade, and then retired and moved to India for eight years and took up all sorts of other exciting things like writing kids books and working for a woman’s co op and designing textile art and being a mother and being a wife and all sorts of new adventures. And then I’m here held up wonderful.
That was amazing. The best elevator pitcher ever.
Before we begin, I also like to mention that we have episodes on Heavenly Mother, so if you guys don’t really know much about it before we go into this episode, you can always watch the other ones to get a little more understanding of what we believe and what we believe in heavenly Mother. Macarthur, take it away.
Okay, so I can tell you, I have a distinct memory when I was twelve years old where someone tried to convince me that it was our doctrine that women should be second class citizens in Zion. Twelve years old. I can remember this moment distinctly. I remember sitting there feeling this, like, upsurge of rejection that I could clearly feel that was not true. And so at that age, twelve, I mean, that’s pretty young. Young and older. At twelve years old, I was very clear that that did not resonate as truth. And so I decided to kind of go down this path and think about it. But honestly, it wasn’t until I started looking around and thinking about daughters and raising them that I began to say that, wait a second, we really need to have a vision for women of the Church. Because I think in some ways, I think a lot of this comes from how I was raised with my mom especially. But like, we had such a vision, I had such a vision that it didn’t occur to me that other people didn’t. Right. And then when I started to raise daughters and realizing that our doctrine wasn’t missing pieces, but how we communicated with missing pieces.
And so the first thing actually came when my then friend and now co author, we’re still Friends, friendly coauthor came to me and said her three year old was reading a cartoon book of scriptures and said, Where are the women in this book? I want to read stories about the women here. She was three years old, and she wanted to see herself in these scriptures. So my friend picked up footstone and was like, sure enough, what in the world? This is a cartoon book of stories that are supposed to inspire us from the Bible. And there’s no inspiring women in the Bible. How could that possibly be? And this was a number of years ago. The landscape on this has significantly changed.
Yeah. Because there are awesome women in the Bible.
Awesome women in the Bible have always been there. And even now, lots of awesome books on this. But in this time, there’s not a single book and not even in our faith. But she went out and looked at other Christian faiths, and no one had a children’s book about women in the Bible and their faithful choices. So that’s what actually launched the Girls Who Choose God series with Desert Book, where we did the Bible and the Book of Mormon and Church history, because we saw that our daughters were wanting to have these role models. Right. So we can hold up a superhero kind of role model, or we can hold up these women who are making bold and brave and righteous choices. And so we really thought it was important for our daughters to have this experience that they could look for someone. And then what happened is over the years, our daughters get older, they start asking more questions. They’re tweens, their bodies are starting to change. They have lots of things that they want to understand. And we realized that the ultimate female role model we have is our heavenly mother. And in fact, the gospel doctrine essay on this.
Not everyone knows this. Okay, so first of all, we should backtrack just a little bit. One, the church’s website has an essay on mother in heaven. So for anyone who doesn’t know one, that this is an acknowledged doctrine, that’s an important thing.
On that essay, they also have a link to the mother there article with Dr. Paulson and Martin fledo. And that was a comprehensive survey through history with all the mentions of heavenly mother. And what’s important about that reference that the Church cites in their essay is that no Prophet or Apostle has ever told us we should not speak of heavenly mother. So for anyone who’s watching this, who might be unaware that that taboo was manmade, that’s one of the false traditions. It’s a false traditions of our 1960s era, actually, supposedly when that got propagated that said we could not speak of her. And so when our daughter started to ask these questions and we realized that the Church had an essay on this, and in the church’s essay, it says, the heavenly mother is our eternal prototype. That’s the exact phrase. And so if we want to understand who we as women are growing to be what our divine destiny is, then understanding that heavenly mother is an eternal prototype is really important.
And so what I see is that when I start to teach this to my daughters or lots of women that I talk to, they just start to spark. Right. Because truth sparks. And so for us, it’s super exciting that this doesn’t take a new revelation. It doesn’t take some sort of switch. Right. Some of the other things in our history take a direct revelation to change how we’re doing things. This is actually already our doctrine. So what we need to do is embrace it, embrace it, teach it, preach it, talk about it, find the ways that it blesses your life and being aware through all of this that the truth of heavenly mother in no way dismisses or generates a heavenly father or Jesus. Right. They’re not jealous breed gods fighting over who’s attention, who gets adoration for who. Right. This is our eternal family. And we clearly understand that Christ is the vital way through the atonement that we give back to our heavenly parents. But Elder Oaks has said our theology begins with heavenly parents, our highest aspiration is to be like them. And if that is true, then we need to know about her.
Yes. That is a wonderful introduction. Thank you. I think about how there is so much focus in our gospel, in our religion about family, how family is essential. Family, the mother, the father, the children, the family unit. So why on Earth would it not be important for us to learn about?
Or why in heaven would it all be important? Yes, totally.
And I know speaking from myself, growing up in the youth, young man priesthood and all that, we haven’t really spoken much about heavenly mother. I don’t really know much about her. So what is the importance for us young men, priesthood, Deacons, priests, all that stuff is learning about heavenly mother, what’s important for us also.
Yeah. So I’m going to paraphrase badly, but Martin Palito is one of the authors of a Mother There article. So this is the article that’s cited on the church’s website. So just to, like lay this groundwork, when I talk about heavenly mother, I always use prophets and Apostles, female Church leaders, things that are on the church’s website. So people do not have to be curious about where things are coming from. If you want to be curious on your own, that’s fine. But when you’re speaking to me, this is how I this is the channel I flow in. Right. So Martin says this beautiful thing about that as men come to embrace their heavenly mother and understand the heavenly mother, that it actually changes for them their relationship with the women around them. Okay.
And so if we know that we are to live in divine partnership. Right. That we know that this is essential for achieving the highest degree of glory, then that means that we as women and men both need to understand how to connect with the other. And men don’t have a lot of experience in this. Right. And so having this understanding, having a framework that our heavenly parents are the pattern. Right. We have this divine eternal pattern means that it is an onus on men to understand how 50% of the pattern works. Right. Women are taught a lot about how the male 50% of the pattern works. Men, frankly, have to choose because it’s not necessarily fed to you the way that it’s fed to us. Right. Anyone but men especially, have to choose whether or not this is something that they’re going to value, which is are you going to value the other 50% of the partnership? Right. Are you going to understand what that eternal model looks like? And I think if you understand the eternal model of how Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother work together, the gospel doctrine essay talks about the heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother worked together for our Salvation.
If you don’t have that framework in your mind, then you’re missing the model. In some ways, you’re missing what your whole life is about.
Yeah, that’s a great point. This is a great way to understand that heavy Father and Heavenly Mother are here to help us be like them.
My whole life through the Church, I’ve been taught be like Jesus, be like a God, be like that. Go, go, be. We’re missing the heavenly mother aspect.
Like you said, when we involve her, then we get the full picture, then we get a full understanding what we actually aspire to be and what our plan is.
Exactly. And so in my mind, if we are told that this is the divine pattern and Heavenly Mother is an eternal prototype, if you’re trying to put together a prototype of something and you’re missing one leg of the stool. Right. Then the balance is off. And that does not, again, say that there’s a lack in Jesus and the atonement. But saying that heavenly Mother is not present means that you’re saying women are not present. Right. And quite frankly, the plan doesn’t work if you don’t have both.
I have a question I’ve really been wanting to ask you. In the Gospel topics essay on Heavenly Mother. It talks about how we don’t pray to heavenly Mother. We’re taught to follow, like the pattern that Jesus Christ teaches.
Yes. Right there. And my question is how then do we develop a relationship with our heavenly mother if we’re not speaking to her in the way that we speak to heavenly Father?
Yeah. Well, we are told to have a relationship with Christ, but we don’t pray to him. True.
That’s really good answer.
So what do you do?
I guess to I pray to heavenly Father, but I am very aware of my mother, and I feel that understanding that I have a mother’s love and a father’s love is vital. They’re different. And it’s important to me to embrace both of those. I know that my co author says that when she cooks up a meal for her family that she feels that she is modeling heavenly Mother because my co author loves food and she loves sustenance and she loves nurturing and she works on fused food security and she works on helping people. Low income food is her thing. Right. So if you walk into a kitchen, it’s like, boom, right. Because you can just see the amount of loving turn that’s happened in that place. Right. If I get asked to make dinner and I step into the kitchen, I feel like I walked into one of the layers of Dante’s Inferno, not my happy place.
Right. In fact, I was living in India. This is a little bit of a mischievous story. Right. So I didn’t want to get married because I thought I was going to have to Cook. And it was such a traditional. I want to be with my children. That’s like the choice I want to be. For the record, none of this game plans come true. That’s what’s funny. I was going to be a part time professor because my dad was a professor and I loved that idea. I was going to be a part time professor and a full time mom. But that meant in my head that I was going to have to Cook. Right. Because that was the model that got handed to me. And so my mother, of course, being diligent and a lovely mother, kept giving me these skills. Right. Like, you have to learn how to do this. And then very quickly, I learned in College, there was my night to rotate in the dorms. There was my night to Cook dinner that I could order out. What a trick. Someone else could take care of that. And then I could actually make that money to pay for that by doing things that I loved.
So then I had a very wise roommate, and she told me when I was running my business. She said, what happens if you had to Cook for all the people in your firm? How would you do that if you had to feed them? How would you do this? And I came up with five ways to do this. She said, you notice none of those involves you cooking, right? Creative problem solve this in such a way that you can actually get married, right? I get married. I moved to India. We have a Cook because it’s very normal in India if you’re a middle class family to have a Cook. And my mother called me up. She’s like, you cheating, right? You totally got off the hook for this. And so that is not how I have a relationship with my mother. But I want to say that Heavenly Mother loves us. It says in the gospel essay that she and her father are involved in our lives. So with whatever way works because we’re all different. You’re following the guidelines you reach, Heavenly Mother as your heart and soul desires.
Thank you so much for this. I’ve learned too much. I feel like I live so much.
You learned the 50% you were missing before.
Where can people find you outside of Satan scripture? Where are you sure?
Yeah. So we write books, Bethany and I, because we believe in teaching our children gospel truths. You can find her books at Desert Book or on Amazon. The Girls Guide to Heavenly Mother. Okay, this is another quick story for you. We write for girls. All of our girls who choose God girls who Heavenly Mothers. We write for girls. And I started to make it public that we write in this book. And a woman got a hold of me and said, can you please make this for children? Can you make this for boys? And I was like, no, we’re going to talk about wounds and hips and stuff like that. I’m not putting that in a boys book. Like, I’m not doing it. And I said, but send me an email, send me a message, and you can tell me what you have in mind or why are you asking this? So I was expecting like three bullet points, right? And she sent me this like she was a mother of five sons. And she said, I am important to my sons. Of course. Why wouldn’t Heavenly Mother be important to them, too? Here’s what I want my sons to understand.
And I looked at it and I was humbled and I thanked her for it because that’s the reason we wrote The Boys Guide to Heavenly Mother. So now there’s a Girl’s Guide to Heavenly Mother and a Boy’s Guide to Heavenly Mother because that woman asked for it, right? And so we didn’t want to rise on our own because I’m not a boy. So we called Martin Plito, who is the author of the article that we mentioned before that’s listed on the church’s website. And we said, Martin, you clearly understand this. You’re a scholar on this. You understand why this matters. Men. Can you write this with us? And so Martin joins us for that book. And so they’re actually the structurally they’re the same. But the content is completely different because men and women think about things in different ways. Those are great place. But anyone who has an interest in this, I recently gave a keynote and 80 women were in the room and only three women knew that we had a gospel essay on Mother in Heaven. So 77 more women got to understand this was our doctrine and then we’re allowed to speak of her.
And so absolutely, if you have not read the essay, read it and read it slowly because people at the same time say there’s not much there or it’s really short. Yeah, but it’s meaty. There are some rich gospel truths in that essay and important. And so start there. And then you have all the footnotes that say where these things came from. From prophets and Apostles and from the research from the mother of their article. Read that, right. And there is so much to go from there that if you start even with that exact thing, there are so many places. There’s so much prophets and Apostles have said on this. That actually the assumption because that’s always our first game. We may not even know we had one. We’ve had one. And then we get past the taboo angle, then we don’t know very much. And I think that just means you haven’t keyword searched heavenlyparents on LDS.org, right? Or heavenlymother. There’s actually plenty of information. And I would also say we don’t need a whole Bible on Heavenly Mother, right. We need some principles that can change our lives. And so if the gospel essays has five main principles that I pulled out that if these are key things that we learned from the Gospel Essays topic.
These are the key things that Church wants us to understand about Heavenly Mother. Those things alone would revolutionize how we live and we’re not even doing that.
Thank you so much. Again, any questions, questions or comments that you have for McArthur? Write them in the comments like and subscribe and we will see you again soon.
Yeah, that was great. Bye.