Auras: Am I Seeing Things?

I see live people.

This may seem like a strange thing to admit, but confessing to possible psychological problems has not been a problem for me in the past. But there are times when I see what I might describe as an aura around people. This only happens to me a few times in a year, and then only during things like a really good sacrament meeting talk or similar circumstance. This aura appears to me as a soft white glow which outlines a person. Am I a nutcase or am I experiencing some type of spiritual gift? I do not bring this up to boast of any great spirituality. But I have not really heard about things like what I am describing as an aura as being legitimate gifts of the spirit. Am I off base here?

I tried to do a search at lds.com and did not come up with anything very specific. I searched through the usual things (Mormon Doctrine, Gospel Doctrine, Teachings, Discourses, etc.) and did not really come up with anything. Some of the best references I found came from the Book of Mormon Index which referenced a few biblical passages as well.

Mosiah 13:5 says that Abinadi’s face shown with exceeding luster even as Moses’ on mount Sinai.

Helaman 5:36 says that the faces of Nephi and Lehi did shine like the faces of angels.

There is also the language of Matthew 5:16 which says to let your light so shine. Might this at times be a literal thing?

I have also heard of times when the face of Joseph Smith would shine occasionally when he spoke, but do not have a reference for that yet.

Some of the purposes of spiritual gifts are given in D&C 46. Among these are that we may not be deceived. They are not given for a sign but are for the benefit of those who love God and keep His commandments, and those who seek to do. I feel that when I see this aura it lets me know that the spirit is at work with the speaker and with me.

So is seeing an aura about people a spiritual gift or just plain goofy?


At 2/01/2006, Blogger Bradley said...

From David O. McKay in April Conference 1963:
"Every man and every person who lives in this world wields an influence, whether for good or for evil. It is not what he says alone it is not alone what he does. It is what he is. Every man, every person radiates what he or she is. Every person is a recipient of radiation. The Savior was conscious of that. Whenever he came into the presence of an individual, he sensed that radiation—whether it was the woman of Samaria with her past life; whether it was the woman who was to be stoned or the men who were to stone her; whether it was the statesman, Nicodemus, or one of the lepers He was conscious of the radiation from the individual. And to a degree so are you, and so am I. It is what we are and what we radiate that affects the people around us."

At 2/01/2006, Blogger Eric Nielson said...

Wow. Excellent quote. Thank you.

At 2/01/2006, Anonymous J. Stapley said...

Interesting. I don't think that I have run across accounts of this before.

The McKay quote is actually an almost verbatim pull from James Allen's As a Man Thinketh. Kimball also quoted extensively from it (the same parts as well) under the chapter of the same name in his Miracle of Forgiveness.

At 2/02/2006, Blogger C Jones said...

I've been thinking about this since you first posted it. In my life the spiritual feelings, dreams,etc. that I've had are as real to me as what I can see with my physical eyes.
But when people see angels in (or in the case of the Kirtland temple, on)the temple or something like you describe, I wonder if they are seeing with what you might call spiritual eyes. Are they seeing something that is physically there- or is it being transmitted to the part of the brain that "sees", or are they actually seeing beyond the veil?
Anyway, I think what you see is real. Most people describe spiritual "messages" as a feeling of some kind, but I think visual is just as valid.

At 2/03/2006, Blogger Justin B. said...

I found some relevant quotes and accounts.

Harold B. Lee had several individuals tell him that they saw an aura around him while he was speaking.

Carlos Asay writes: "I was told of an incident where two missionaries were stopped by a woman on a city walkway. The woman asked, 'Who are you?' Before they could answer, she added, 'You look like angels.'

This story does not sound farfetched to those who are acquainted with the sanctifying influence of service and who have observed the special look of those who are close to the Spirit of the Lord. There is a glow and aura that seem to surround those who walk uprightly before the Lord, seeking to advance his cause of righteousness." Elder Asay then cites Alma 5:13-19 and Helaman 5:36 (In the Lord's Service, p. 172).

Vaughn J. Featherstone writes: "Righteous men and women do give off an aura of light. At a funeral service once I heard President Hugh B. Brown say, 'Death is not the end; it is putting out the candle because the dawn has come.' Compare the light of a candle to the immensity and glory of the dawning of a new day. Surely our light is limited compared to the light of Christ; nevertheless, He said to His disciples, 'Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.' (Matthew 5:14-16.) We begin to understand how light works when we have 'spiritually been born of God . . . [and] received his image in [our] countenance.' (Alma 5:14.)Those who are worthy when they attend the temple have His image in their countenance. His light is in them and through them. When they choose to be obedient, to sustain and follow the prophets of the living God, the light reaches into their marital relations, family responsibilities, Church callings, and workday activities." (Incomparable Christ, 67-68).

Bruce Hafen writes in his biography of Elder Maxwell: "Stake president Robert Garff wrote Elder Maxwell after a stake conference in Bountiful, Utah, on May 18, 1987, that 'the highlight [of the conference] was the Apostolic blessing. . . . many people have said to me that it was a spiritual feast. Some . . . said they noticed a change in your countenance and a unique tone in your voice. . . . The journals of our stake [members] are full of reflections from that weekend.' This observation echoed something Neal mentioned in his personal notes during the early 1980s. He said that in recent years, on perhaps a half dozen occasions, he had the experience of sensing that 'the Spirit of our Heavenly Father was especially present' in a conference or other meeting where he had spoken. In each case, one or two people had 'come up after the meeting and reported that there was an aura or glow about [him as he] spoke.' He believed that what they saw indicated to them, probably more than to him, 'that the Lord was with us and approved' what was happening 'at least at that moment'" (A Disciple's Life).

An experience of Orson Pratt's: "Elder Pratt said he was present when this revelation [Section 51] was given. No great noise or physical manifestation was made; Joseph was as calm as the morning sun. But he noticed a change in his countenance that he had never noticed before, when a revelation was given to him. Joseph's face was exceedingly white, and seemed to shine" (Millennial Star, Aug. 11, 1874, p. 498).

At 2/03/2006, Blogger Eric Nielson said...

CJones - always good to hear from you. Thank you for your insights and support.

JustinB- What outstanding quotes. Thank you so much. Maybe I'm not losing it.

At 2/03/2006, Anonymous Old Charley said...

In the OT the Children of Israel saw Moses' aura and were afraid.

See: Exodus 34:29-35

"And it came to pass, when Moses came down from mount Sinai with the two tables of testimony in Moses' hand, when he came down from the mount, that Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him.
And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid to come nigh him. And till Moses had done speaking with them, he put a vail on his face. But when Moses went in before the LORD to speak with him, he took the vail off, until he came out. And he came out, and spake unto the children of Israel that which he was commanded. And the children of Israel saw the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses' face shone: and Moses put the vail upon his face again, until he went in to speak with him."

To quote JL: "May we all shine on with the earth, the moon and the sun."

Eric you are not losing it, but you are finding it by coming into the greater light.

At 2/05/2006, Blogger Bookslinger said...

I've often seen spiritual light being given off by people. Sometimes you can recognize who the temple workers are in a congregation of saints, because they have the temple glow about them.

I was at a fireside when a temple worker talked about Jesus as the Second comforter. He glowed when he talked about the subject. I received the idea that he had personally met the Savior face-to-face.

It hasn't happened recently, but in the past I've used the glow to identify to whom to give a pass-along card or a Book of Mormon. Many non-members who have faith in Jesus Christ also give off a glow. If they are that close to the Savior, I hope they will recognize him when they read the Book of Mormon.

I saw the glow, and a look of humility, in one man at the gym. I asked him if he had read the Book of Mormon before. And he said he had, but he was no longer interested.

At 2/06/2006, Blogger Eric Nielson said...

Charley and Bookslinger.

Thank you fro droping by and for your kind comments. It's ggod to know I'm not alone in this.

At 2/11/2006, Anonymous Naiah Earhart said...

I've experienced it, too, but, alas, I have a more temporal explanation for it. "A really good scarament meeting," you say, as in one where your eye is riveted on the speaker? All people, even when stading at a podium sway slightly as they shift their weight back and forth from foot to foot.

Anything we stare at long enough will cause the "cone" in our eye that receives it's color of light to 'max out' after a while. Afterimages are then visible, where the lack of that color exists in the person's field of vision. The afterimage will appear to be the color opposite the color of the original object on the color wheel.

If you stare at a large red dot for several seconds (say, about 10 or so), without letting your eyes wander, you can then turn your eyes to a white wall, or a white piece of paper, and you will see what appears to be a green dot. Stare at something blue, and the afterimage will be orange, etc.

I noticed when I would attend particularly interesting lectures as a girl that I could see the same thing. It was not until I learned how afterimages worked that I realized that the white 'shimmer' or 'outline' that I started to see well in to a talk was simply the afterimage of the person as they swayed within that space.

I really hope that I have not inadvertently flung cold water on something that warmed your heart. I would encourage you to pray about it, because, after all, I do not see with your eyes, and what you see may be something more. That's between you & the Lord.

At 2/11/2006, Blogger Eric Nielson said...


Thank you for your insight here. I was somewhat concerned about the type of thing you are describing. I welcome your thoughts on this and was thinking the same type of thing - thus the question 'Am I seeing things?' Ultimately what we feel is the important thing.

At 2/12/2006, Anonymous Geoff J said...

" I wonder if they are seeing with what you might call spiritual eyes."

C Jones was part of some posts and debates at the Thang last summer that relate to this question Eric. One was called “whether in the body or out I cannot tell” and another was called Our spiritual media player.

At 4/16/2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Even more so on this subject- In prayer, when I have times of deep intercession, praying deep in my prayer language and resting in his presence, when my eyes are open - if the room is completly dark, I can see with my "spiritual eyes" an animated afterimage type tunnel, flowing either away from me (while I am praying) or towards me (resting in His presence) - I think it is something very real that any believer can experience. It's very focus and defined - also comforting. Has any one ever experienced this? It is very hard to explain, but it's almost like a moving after image, an almost electric like flow. Thanks!

At 5/19/2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eric, I have also experienced this gift. You are not weird in anyway. We are reluctant to talk about the things in the spirit that we experience for "fear of man." I also have a HIGH sensitivity to bad spiritual presences and have had that gift since I was a child. But referring to your gift, I have noticed it seems to be when (an angel or the holy spirit?) is delivering a message to the mind to the mind of the speaker. The holy spirit has instructed me sometimes right before it was going to happen. It has told me to look at their head or in a certain direction. I have experienced it 9 times in my lifetime. Each time it has been in a church where I KNEW THERE WAS A STRONG ANNOINTING! When I was instructed by the holy spirit to go to that specific church. The intensity of the light does differ and sometimes it does not stay. Joyce Meyer spoke about this too. She once said that a believers husband reluctantly came to one of her conferences.He was not saved at the time but during the conference he saw the aura you describe around her head and saw angels on the stage guarding and ministering to her. He said the angels has sowrds drawn to protect her. He saw this for a few minutes. She attributed his vision to God opening his spiritual eyes and allowing him to see with the eyes of the spirit temporarily. God does reveal all in time. I can tell you for me personally it has been a protection and a beautiful gift of some kind. May God bless you and I will pray for a divine revealation of the "why's and how's" of the gift. It is clearly for a purpose but what purpose? It is to serve to help others, but how? That I can not answer. I personally know someone whom has the "ears" of holy spirit. The spirit will whisper unrevealed heart secrets about people as protection to him. Why would the eyes be any different in the body of christ? Oddly enough when I asked god before why I saw these things and if I was crazy also I was led to the same scriptures quoted by others on this board. Hope this helps and I will keep u in my prayers.

At 12/09/2013, Blogger Seabeagle said...

Some people can pick up aura's around certain people. You even don't have to be LDS.

We all have different gifts that God gave us. Some people usually don't talk about this, because its kind of sacred gift to them.

At 7/23/2017, Blogger Lourdrick Herrenauw said...

Hello there! I'm Jadon Herrenauw, from the Philippines. Earlier today, i told my wife that I always see an "AURA" whenever our bishop, stake president, and the patriarch would speak in front. Not just them, some other people i would see that too. Temple workers have that "AURA" too. I tried looking it up on the gospel library and look for talks, or doctrines that might mention about this. Then I googled and arrived here in your blog. If you try to take a look at this picture of Jesus Christ, it would best describe that aura I've been talking about. http://www.ldswallpaper.com/wp-content/gallery/jesus1024x768/jesuschristredrobelarge_1024x768.jpg


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