1 Nephi 7:8
8 And now I, Nephi, being agrieved for the hardness of their hearts, therefore I spake unto them, saying, yea, even unto Laman and unto Lemuel: Behold ye are mine elder brethren, and how is it that ye are so hard in your hearts, and so blind in your minds, that ye have need that I, your byounger brother, should speak unto you, yea, and set an cexample for you?
“blind in your minds”
Alex is blind in his mind. His eyes work just as well or better than mine, but the images can’t be processed in his brain. He is blind in his mind.
What an amazing thought – that Laman and Lemuel saw what Nephi and Sam saw every day of their lives. (I’m using my imagination here a little. Nothing that is recorded, but what I can imagine happened.) Laman, Lemuel, Sam, and Nephi all saw their Dad studying the Holy Word. They saw him praying. They saw him going to the synagogue. The images they saw with their eyes traveled down their optic nerves to their brains. But unfortunately here in the brain they didn’t process them. They didn’t take the time to reflect, to ponder, to digest what they saw. They found no meaning. They were blind to the gospel around them. A choice, I think. To see, but not to take the time to understand. How am I doing with that?
6 And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that afaith is things which are bhoped for and cnot seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no dwitness until after the etrial of your faith.
“faith is things which are hoped for and not seen”
Alex does not see. His life is faith. He hopes that when he cries, one of those big voices will come and comfort him, change his diaper, or fill the void in his stomach. He hopes we will come, for he does not see us.
Now he has his little room. In his little room, toys are suspended with pieces of elastic. His toy measuring cups are always hanging in the same place. His squishy toy is always by his right hand. His rattle is near his left knee. The bead wall is to his left. They are static and unchanging. When we place him in his room, we always put him in the exact same spot, facing the exact same way. When we introduced him to the room, we took his little hand and helped him feel two toys – that was all. The rest of the room he has to discover for himself. I could take his hands and have him feel everything and I could use my voice and label everything, but what would he learn? Nothing. He has to discover the room, the different toys, the various strands of beads. He has to learn how the toys feel different – why is that one scratchy and this one makes a great sound when I move it. These experiences will help him make connections in his brain. He will make sense of that room and understand properties of matter and space.
He loves his little room! He babbles and squeals in there! Even though he can’t see, now when he reaches out he hopes that his favorite toy will be there. Interesting to me that when he is out of his little room, he won’t reach for toys. Already he has learned to have faith when he is in the right place.
This is so much like how God works with us. He sets us on a path and helps us (often through others) to find the first points, and then lets us discover and explore. To experience and grow. How merciful to allow our minds to process and develop, rather than handing us everything and teaching us to be dependent and helpless.