All Ye Need to Know | BYU Studies

All Ye Need to Know

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All Ye Need to Know

John D. Lamb

Chemistry and biochemistry professor John D. Lamb, recipient of the 2013 Karl G. Maeser Distinguished Faculty Lecturer Award, delivered this forum address on May 20, 2014 at Brigham Young University. Taking his theme from Keats's "Ode on a Grecian Urn," Lamb discusses the value of learning and different ways of gaining knowledge. He contrasts opportunities for light and learning with forces that promote evil and ignorance. Quoting Hugh Nibley, Lamb warns against the dangers of "evading the responsibility of directing our minds to the highest possible object. . . . If the mind is denied functioning to capacity, it will take terrible revenge . . . ; in particular, it will invent knowledge if it has to." He extols the virtues of eclectic learning, mentioning specifically mathematics, economics, literature, physics, music, and "the ultimate in human intellectual achievement"—chemistry.