The Book of Jared

Rehearsing our doubts with other doubters...

President Nelson made a comment in his conference talk (April, 2021) that got me thinking about a video I had watched about the "demon core"...

The demon core is an interesting little sphere made out of Uranium that was to have been used to create a third atomic bomb to be dropped on Japan in World War II. In the end, Japan surrendered before the third bomb was used, and the core, the sphere of Uranium that is compressed using conventional explosives to create a chain reaction (big boom), was sent back to New Mexico for more testing. 

As part of that testing, scientists discovered that they could induce a chain reaction in the Uranium core without using conventional explosives if they reflected back the neutrons that are normally given off by the element. These could then interact with other parts of the atoms and cause other neutrons to be emitted, at an increasing rate, until the chain reaction begin; a nuclear feedback loop that ends with an even bigger boom. During the process of testing this theory, several scientists were killed and other exposed to high doses of radiation. 

From Wikipedia: 

On August 21, 1945, the plutonium core produced a burst of neutron radiation that led to physicist Harry Daghlian's death. Daghlian made a mistake while performing neutron reflector experiments on the core. He was working alone; a security guard, Private Robert J. Hemmerly, was seated at a desk 10 to 12 feet (3 to 4 m) away.[8] The core was placed within a stack of neutron-reflective tungsten carbide bricks and the addition of each brick moved the assembly closer to criticality. While attempting to stack another brick around the assembly, Daghlian accidentally dropped it onto the core and thereby caused the core to go well into supercriticality, a self-sustaining critical chain reaction. He quickly moved the brick off the assembly, but received a fatal dose of radiation. He died 25 days later from acute radiation poisoning.[9]

As I was watching conference, I thought of this video when President Nelson commented that we should "Stop increasing [our] doubts by rehearsing them with other doubters." There have been times in my life where I was not looking for answers, but rather for validation, and there is no lack of validating voices in this modern world. For me, looking for validation instead of understanding or truth becomes a self sustaining reaction, where we are only hearing what we already think (echo chamber), and once it is self sustaining, it can be just as deadly spiritually as the demon core was. 

Not a perfect analogy, but it helped me a bit. 

Written by Jared on Friday December 16, 2022.

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