General LDS Information
Basic LDS Beliefs
Music and Arts
LDS Online Stores
Priesthood, Humor, Miscel.
Suggest a Site
Now accepting banner ads!
LILLYIs it possible for anyone to remember anything from their pre-mortal life?
JOEL President George Q. Cannon said:
"You have heard of men who have been drowning or have fallen from a great height describe that in about a second or two every event of their lives passed before them like a panorama with the rapidity of lightning. This shows what power there is latent in the human mind, which, when quickened by the power of God, will make men and women recall not only that which pertains to this life, but our memories will stretch back to the life we had before we came here, with the associations we had with our Father and God and with those bright spirits that stand around His throne and with the righteous and holy ones." (Gospel Truth: Discourses and Writings of President George Q. Cannon, p. 60)
So apparently according to President Cannon our mind needs to be quickened by the power of God for us to be able to stretch our memories back to the pre-moral life. This will most certainly happen once we are resurrected and have obtained eternal life, but will probably not happen in this life or even in the spirit world after we die.
Elder Neil A.Maxwell said:
“The veil of forgetfulness of the first estate apparently will not be suddenly, automatically, and totally removed at the time of our temporal death. This veil, a condition of our entire second estate, is associated with and is part of our time of mortal trial, testing, proving, and overcoming by faith—and thus will continue in some key respects into the spirit world. (The Promise of Discipleship , 119, 122)
Elder Boyd K. Packer confirms we will remember everything once we reach the Celestial Kingdom:
Resurrection is our redemption from temporal death, from the grave. There is also a redemption from the spiritual death and an exaltation for those who are worthy to receive it. We shall receive celestial, terrestrial, or telestial bodies in the resurrection. Those who inherit the celestial glory shall inherit bodies like unto the Father, bodies which have a glory akin to the glory of the sun. Our memory of premortal life will be restored in perfect clarity. Those who have been endowed, sealed, and have kept their covenants will assemble with their families. (Mine Errand from the Lord, by Boyd K. Packer)
So we know it will happen once we reach the Celestial kingdom, but what about during this life? In order for us to walk by faith and prove ourselves, as Elder Maxwell said, there has been a veil of forgetfulness placed over our minds and spirits that prevents us from remembering what happened during the pre-mortal life. If that did not exist we would not need faith to live in this life. If some were given the ability to remember and not others that would give them an unfair advantage over the rest of us.
President Thomas S. Monson said:
“How grateful we should be that a wise Creator fashioned an earth and placed us here, with a veil of forgetfulness on our previous existence, so that we might experience a time of testing, an opportunity to prove ourselves and qualify for all that God has prepared for us to receive.” —(“Invitation to Exaltation,” Ensign, June 1993, 4 President Thomas S. Monson)
President Russell M. Nelson taught, “Although your spirit had a veil of forgetfulness placed over it at the time of your birth into mortality, it retained its power to remember all that happens.” ("Self-Mastery" Russell M. Nelson, October 1985)
Even though right now we cannot remember all that happened, there can at times be moments when we are suddenly made aware of the reality of our existence there and how it affects our spirits in this life.
President Joseph F. Smith said:
“But in coming here, we forgot all, that our agency might be free indeed, to choose good or evil, that we might merit the reward of our own choice and conduct. But by the power of the Spirit, in the redemption of Christ, through obedience, we often catch a spark from the awakened memories of the immortal soul, which lights up our whole being as with the glory of our former home” (Gospel Doctrine, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1977, pp. 13–14).
Return to top
Return to Questions