Monday, August 27, 2012

The Tree of Life

I am releasing my newest short book titled "The Tree of Life."

I am very proud of the this book. I worked hard to keep it short and to the point, yet every day I think I really should add this or that. There are a few additions I will make later, but this is the substantially the completed work. 

While not shifting any blame to them, I should recognize the editing assistance of my wife Mary, and my friend Bill Hess, thank you!

Your comments, or criticism (constructive or otherwise) are welcome.

Download PDF HERE.


15 comments:

Steven Montgomery said...

David, I'm about half way through it. So far it is an excellent analysis. There are also a few typo's that you might want to fix. Thanks.

David Littlefield said...

Hey Steven!

Thank you! I am glad you are enjoying it. And, the better part is the second part.

Getting the typos out is always my biggest challenge. Even when I have someone do some editing, I make a few changes and introduce more mistakes.

Thank you!

Steven Montgomery said...

David, reading this research of yours was fantastic. I've often thought about several things you mention in "The Tree of Life" paper.

For one I have often thought that the river in the Garden of Eden represented the four Kingdoms (three of various degrees of glory and one of outer darkness). Two, I've also often thought about this universe of ours is one that is in a fallen state, hence the entrophy. Three, that God is the creator or giver of law (I've even wrote an article about that here: https://sites.google.com/site/heavenlybanner/constitutional-banner/god-author-of-liberty ).

There are also some new concepts you've introduced me to. Such as the "visions" of Ezekial and Lehi (and Nephi) being both about the tree of life.

Also, one of my favorite verses, and has been for a long time is that that you mention in Revelation 22:14 as well as Proverbs 3:18. Anyhow, I read this pretty fast,I usually read things through pretty quickly the first time to get a basic overview and then go back and reread it much slower to get into more depth, even many times if necessary. This seems to be one of those things I'll have to research with more depth. Thanks for writing it.

David Littlefield said...

Hey Steven!

I have seen you around for a long time Steven and never knew that "The Perfect Law of Liberty" was your site.

I stop by in there all the time, it's a great site. keep up the good work!

https://sites.google.com/site/heavenlybanner/

-David

Steven Montgomery said...

Thanks for the kind remarks. I try to do my part. Although I probably need to get busy and write some more.

The Quinn Family said...

I just finished reading, absolutely wonderful!!! Outstanding thoughts. I had heard the idea of the rivers flowing from the tree to form the different kingdoms but I had never thought of the river flowing with the laws and how it corresponds to those drowning in the river and why the river is pure at one end and filthy at another. Just love love loved the book. Thank you!

David Littlefield said...

Dear Sister Quinn:

Thank you for your very kind words. I am happy that you enjoyed reading my newest book.

The topics I cover really have a very narrow audience, so when someone reads one of my papers, and enjoys it, it makes the effort all worth while. I was curious why you would like my book and checked out your blogs. I can see from the books you read we have similar interests.

My wife also home schooled our children (all grown-up now), so I really enjoyed your blog, with the family life and schooling. Looks like you have a great family. You might check out my daughter’s web sites: http://selfmadescholar.com and http://distancelearn.about.com

Thank you again!

Janet Lisonbee said...

I liked it very much. We have often heard of the river described in Ezekial being the opposite of what you have described. That as we go to the temple often, the "waters" get deeper symbolic of our understanding. However, I liked how you tied it into Lehi & Nephi's vision where the waters get deeper and dirtier. In reality the only way a river can do that is when it is fed by tributaries [outside/worldy influences] and perhaps this is implied in the visions, thus polluting the pure waters from the temple/tree.
I wonder if you could comment regarding Nephi's description of Mary, the mother of Jesus and the tree of Life being almost identical. She was pure and white above all other women as the tree was above all other trees. Her fruit would be Christ. Would that work?
Excellent work.

David Littlefield said...

Dear Janet:

Thank you, I am glad you enjoyed it. And for a professional writer, I hope my writing was not to hard to overlook. I am a better theologian, than a writer.

(and by the way, I served a mission in the Virginia, Roanoke Mission.)

I could have spent a little more time with Mary being part of the Tree of Life, but I had to limit my tangents. In my view, the Tree of Life is Christ. But what does that mean? To me it means his coming into the world, and Mary was central to that. It includes the creation, the powers or emanations that create the kingdoms, the gates or veils, the atonement, and all the laws and priesthood.

Some interesting thoughts about Mary and the Tree of Life. In Hebrew thinking, the Tree is feminine. In an Old Testament apostasy, the temple was “cleansed” from what is portrayed as idolatry. The first thing to go was the “Asherah” (foreign goddess - Queen of Heaven - having a lose mythological connection with Mary) which is thought by some to be the Menorah, a representation of the tree of life. It appears to me that this apostasy was a kind of fundamentalist apostasy removing anything above a Aaronic Priesthood level in the temple, since the apostasy was lead by these priests. Things misunderstood by lower priest, or perhaps even thought to be only in the realm of the High Priest were purged from the temple. There appears to be an ongoing connection between Mary and the Tree of Life, and a lot of debris surrounding the topic.

If you enjoyed The Tree of Life, you might also enjoy “Amazing Grace” by yours truly.

David

Anonymous said...

We will be having funeral services for David Littlefield on Tuesday, March 5th from 4-5 p.m. It will be at this LDS chapel: 1276 Erringer Road, Simi Valley, CA. He will later be buried in Sandy, Utah. If you know anyone that would like to know this information, please do pass it along.

The Quinn Family said...

oh my goodness, I had not heard. I am so sorry to hear this.

Anonymous said...

David passed away suddenly on February 28th from a heart attack.

We apologize to those who are learning of this loss on this site in such an impersonal manner.

David is much loved. We will be celebrating his life that was full of love, kindness and generosity. He is truly an honorable man. All are welcome to attend.

Anonymous said...

More than anything, David Littlefield (1957-2013), will be remembered for his generous spirit. David was born to Marilyn and Glenn Littlefield in 1957. He had an adventurous childhood with his four siblings, full of bike rides and schemes. One of the most significant turning points of his life was choosing to go on an LDS mission to Roanoke, Virginia. While there, he learned to love and serve, and he imagined the kind of life he wanted to create for himself. When he returned, he met his sweetheart Mary Martin and pulled up to her house on a motorcycle for their very first date. They fell in love and were married in the Salt Lake City LDS temple. They went on to have four kids, and he was the best Dad anyone could ask for. He was always hilarious, always gentle, always looking for the best in his kids. He taught his children to be strong, to laugh at themselves, and to always keep an eye out for others. At birthday parties for his kids, nieces, and nephews, he would sneak out into the garage, put on a gorilla suit, and surprise the family by running off with the birthday child. During Christmas would dress up as you-know-who while all the kids, and the adults that could be persuaded, told him what they wanted. He would also show up in costume for neighbors, ward members, and families that he knew needed a little Christmas cheer that year. He would take off late at night to drop off piles of presents for families and neighbors that might not otherwise have had them. He spent a significant amount of time fixing up a group home for children and often volunteered for the overnight shift at a homeless shelter. Too many times to count, he gave money to people that were struggling even if that meant he would get further behind on his own bills. He knew many of the homeless near his work by name and would take time out of his day to talk with them and give them a meal or some financial assistance. He opened up his home to families that needed a place to stay. In at least two instances, he was able to save someone’s life. In the halls during an LDS ward meeting, he administered emergency mouth-to-mouth to a baby that had stopped breathing when no one else knew what to do. And, once in the drive through of a Jack-in-the-Box, he noticed a patio diner choking, got out of his car, did the Heimlich maneuver, and got back in line to order a burger and his large Diet Coke. David loved studying the LDS religion and would spend hours marking up articles and writing his own books. He loved sharing what he learned with others through discussions and his blog. He was always up for a lively debate and always kept a good humor even when others didn’t share his views. He served diligently in every church calling he had, and was never hesitant to visit a family, give blessings, or take someone to the hospital in the middle of the night. David worked harder than anyone we know. He often spent 14-hour days toiling over a project or trying to meet a deadline. When things got tough, he would stay positive and just work harder. He never really took a vacation or had a break in his whole adult life. But he never complained because he truly believed that he was doing it for the people that he loved. For his family, for his friends, for the ability to help those that were in need. David gave so much to everyone he encountered, always with his jolly attitude, his good natured playfulness, and his love of life. For all of us, David, thank you

http://www.meaningfulfunerals.net/fh/obituaries/obituary.cfm?o_id=1992710&fh_id=13647

http://www.legacy.com/guestbook/Batesville/guestbook.aspx?n=david-littlefield&pid=163462504

Anonymous said...

I'm sad to hear of David's passing. I loved his book Mormon Mysticism. I have been away from his site for a couple years, and just recently saw the Tree of Life pdf and Amazing Grace pdf. However the links are not working. If any of you have these pdf files I would love to read them. please email them to me at jreliance@yahoo.com. Thanks!

ryanlittlefield.com said...

For anyone looking to download the links in the past few months, I've fixed the download links to my dad's books in the sidebar.