Standing in Holy Places

by | Apr. 02, 2010

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I’ve been thinking lately about the idea of place: places I love, like the Montana mountains of my childhood, the sunflower studded fields of my mission, the temple. And places I dislike, like the lines in Wal-Mart, the dirty streets after a long overdue spring thaw. But mostly, I’ve been thinking about the scriptural injunction to “stand in holy places.”

Why this obsession with place? Some of it comes from my current struggle to find my place in a new ward and a new community: I am constantly confronted by unfamiliar spaces. Some of it comes from the work I did in graduate school on rhetorics of space, which is a fancy way of saying that I spent a lot of time thinking about how different places affected the options some nineteenth-century women had for speaking publicly. But it also comes from a sense that understanding the places that we live is critical to understanding who we are and how we can more consciously shape who we want to become.

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