A few months back I was in stake conference and someone gave a talk on the gift of the Holy Ghost.  In the talk, the person shared parts of a talk by Truman G Madsen, where he lists 20 questions to ask yourself in order to identify if you’ve felt the power and gift of the Holy Ghost.  I tried to write most of them down, but may be missing them.  In addition, I have had a hard time coming across the Madsen talk, so if you have more information that would be great!

20 Questions

1. Have you ever had the Spirit overwhelm you with gratitude?

2. Have you ever spoken beyond your means?

3. Have you ever given a talk and had people say “you said exactly what I needed to hear”?

4. Have you ever been filled with “liquid fire” in response to prayer?

5. Have you ever been given words to pray?

6. Have you known you’d be called upon to pray or serve in a particular calling?

7. Have you been prompted to share your testimony, or witness of the gospel?

8. Have you felt the overwhelming sense of peace that comes from the Spirit?

9. Have you ever given a blessing or received a blessing you needed?

10. Have you ever been healed by a blessing?

11. Have you had the experience of having the veil thin?

12. Have you been in the temple and the “flood gates open” and light pours into you?

13. Have you had experience knowing there were angels in the temple?

14. Have you had the experience where scriptures seem to “leap off the page” and give you answers?

15. Have you been lead to find names in family history to do geneology and temple work?

16. Have you ever had flashes of insight, or “pure knowledge”?

17. Have you ever sat in sacrament and felt wounds lifted from your soul?

18. Have you ever felt changed from partaking of the sacrament?

19. Have you felt changed from the atonement?

20. (I missed the last one)

Madsen then goes on to explain that when we have these experiences it is when we’re either serving someone else in our family or community, praying, and reading our scriptures…basically doing what it takes to receive a witness.  He suggests it requires softness of heart, meekness, humility, and lowliness of heart.

I agree with many of these statements in that I’ve had amazing spiritual experiences in the temple, during prayer, in sacrament, and while giving and receiving blessings. 

However, my question I pose is whether one necessarily needs the gift of the Holy Ghost (meaning having received the laying on of hands after baptism) to experience these things, or if anyone can experience these things?  For most of my life, I’ve been an active member of the LDS church and don’t really know what it may be like for those who don’t recieve the laying on of hands.  I’d be interested to hear from everyone, but especially those who have been baptized members of the LDS church and recieved the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.  Did you experience an added measure of the spirit after receiving the laying on of hands and what are your thoughts on these 20 questions?  Did you, or could you experience this w/o having the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost?