Catering to instincts contrary to happiness

In Notwithstanding Our Weakness, Elder Neal A. Maxwell examined the "natural man" as he wrote about that which must be put off in order to obtain righteousness, and the fallacy of seeking happiness in iniquity, of which the Lamanite prophet Samuel warned:

"First of all," Elder Maxwell wrote, "the natural man is an enemy to God." (Mosiah 3:19.) This means that such individuals would (whether fully understanding the implications of their own resistance or not) oppose the ultimate purpose of God for mankind, which is, as we know, to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.' (Moses 1:39.) Given our eternal interests, the natural man therefore is not our friend either, even if, at times, we seem quite at home with him."The natural man is intellectually proud, excluding divine data and counsel that are essential to our welfare. The Lord speaks of how those whoseek not the Lord to establish his righteousness' and who are, therefore, disposed to create a circumstance in which `every man walketh in his own way, and after the image of his own god, whose image is in the likeness of the world.' (D&C 1:16.)

"Instead of becoming a saint, being childlike and willing to submit to our eternal Father, the natural man is rebellious and insists on walking in his own way. He is childish instead of childlike.

"The natural man also stubbornly seeks for happiness in iniquity - an incredibly naive notion about the nature of happiness and the universe. We read this of such souls: `But behold, your days of probation are past; ye have procrastinated the day of your salvation until it is everlastingly too late, and your destruction is made sure; yea, for ye have sought all the days of your lives for that which ye could not obtain; and ye have sought for happiness in doing iniquity, which thing is contrary to the nature of that righteousness which is in our great and Eternal Head.' (Hel. 13:38.)

"Thus it is that the natural man, in attempting to live without God in the world' and in catering slavishly to his natural instincts, is actually livingcontrary to the nature of happiness.' " (Alma 41:11.)

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