I have been thinking a great deal about media and its different forms and how it can influence a person.
I enjoy reading books but since Lily has been born I have not really had as much time to read. I have also found that I really enjoy to listen to books on disc, it is especially handy when the library does not have the book you want in print but in listening device form.
Anyhow, I have had some bad luck lately in my attempts to continue to enjoy listening to literature. I have stopped listening to 3 or 4 different books in the last few months due to content. If I can not listen to it with my children in the room, I don't think I should be listening.
I usually read/listen to books from the teen fiction area but these books came from the adult section. That sounds so bad in this context but you know what part of the library I am talking about. One of these books was a really popular book and has been made into a movie but a few discs in, I turned it off and returned it. I don't want you to think I turn it off after the first swear word or the first sensual kiss, I have given each book two chances. But this philosophy makes me think of this Mormonad poster:
Gross, I know.
But what really got me thinking this last time I had to stop listening to a book, was would I sit through this if it were a movie or would I read the book even if I had to skip a few paragraphs?
I have read a few books that I skipped parts and I can specifically think of 2 movies that I wish I would have walked out of (and a movie I stopped watching on Netflix the other day). But I am not reading those books out loud to my children and I did not even have children when I saw the movies so is it my children that have caused me to change? Is it okay for me to read or watch those things or listen on my ipod if they are not aware of it?
I realize that there is content that is appropriate for me and not for them. But, sometimes you think it is going to be great because it is a best seller or you enjoyed another book by the same author and -bam! you get more than you expected. (Okay, maybe not always not so suddenly.)
In pondering this I have thought of the 13th Article of Faith: "... if there is anything virtuous, lovely, of good report, or praiseworthy, we seek after these things." I have decided that the praiseworthy part is not to be based upon the world's standards.
I don't like that my spirit feels affected when I am engrossed in a story that may be questionable.
President Monson said this: "Our Heavenly Father has counseled us to seek after "anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy." Whatever you read, listen to, or watch makes an impression on you.
Pornography is especially dangerous and addictive. Curious exploration of pornography can become a controlling habit, leading to coarser material and to sexual transgression. Avoid pornography at all costs.
Don't be afraid to walk out of a movie, turn off a television set, or change a radio station if what's being presented does not meet your Heavenly Father's standards. In short, if you have any question about whether a particular movie, book, or other form of entertainment is appropriate, don't see it, don't read it, don't participate."
I am so thankful for a prophet who can give such clear guidance.
As a mother, I feel that I need the guidance of the Holy Ghost in every part of my day and I just fear that I can not have that if my mind is recalling inappropriate scenes or words from movies or books. I hope I can be better in my choices.
Peter teases me about my recent issues and so I am just going to stick to the teen literature for my listening and most likely reading enjoyment.
What are your thoughts on media and the influences it can have?