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“Comments,” New Era, Apr. 1971, 33


“The more I have thought about it, the more I have come to one basic insight regarding the United Order, and that insight shows a positive result of the United Order culture: The United Order taught us that people love privacy. It also taught us that people are perfectly willing to contribute to a common cause, but in certain realms of decision-making, people prefer to be their own patriarchs. In this play, the song that says, in effect, I need what I don’t need, puts the finger exactly on the point. One person might need something that another person doesn’t need.

“There are parallels for us today. Some families invest their money in something that a neighbor calls a useless luxury. ‘What he ought to have done is thus-and-thus,’ one thinks to himself when looking at his neighbor’s life. We sometimes tend to overlook the fact that there may be a very deep-seated hunger in our neighbor’s personality for some kind of expression that is unique and different. None of us know what the celestial order will be like, but we have sufficient information from our prophets to believe that individuality will find its expression, because that is the nature of eternal progression. We aren’t trying to progress to become exactly like each other, as I understand it. We are trying to progress to fulfill each individual potential to its fullest. Some of us need to get away from the production-line concept of perfection and take a look at all the leaves that God has created. The genius of God is that every leaf is different, yet each serves common functions, such as photosynthesis. Individuality of creation is the hallmark of the great Creator.

“Another great value shown in this play is that the Mormon people have courage—courage to try new things, courage to try to find solutions to their problems, courage to be willing to adjust, to try to make things work for individual betterment. The fact that the United Order was abandoned does not mark failure in the Church or in our leaders, in my judgment.

“The spirit of this play is what is important—that is, the love that people have for each other transcends the particular system under which they are living. This is also an eternal quality of love that I believe the Savior exemplified. And it is a cultural value from Mormon history that I think the world needs to hear. It is a most timely theme.”