This week’s lesson is a continuation of the aborted Oliver Cowdery translation attempt. Bummer for you teachers who rotate weeks with another teacher; there’s a BIG overlap in chapters here with both this week and last week’s lesson focusing on the same three sections of the Doctrine & Covenants: 6, 8, and 9. This one throws section 11 in the cart, but really, the majority of the lesson is still focused on the same material as last week. You’re the loser who drew the short straw because your rotating cohort got first dibs on the good stuff.
The first “attention activity” is the suggestion to bring a radio to class. Apparently, a radio is an old-timey electronic device that was used to receive transmitted sound waves from the air. People used to use these devices to listen to talk show programs as well as music, all interspersed with housewives gushing about the newest dish washing soap and doctors recommending their favorite brand of cigarette “for your health.” Radios were also used in the Netflix series Stranger Things to communicate with the Upside Down. Since it’s probably impractical to drive your car into the classroom, perhaps there are some functional portable radios at the Desert Industries or in your grandfather’s attic you could pick up for your object lesson. 
“How can listening to the Holy Ghost be compared to finding a radio station?”
- Both are obsolete in our modern era.
- Young people especially (those darn millenials!) are increasingly finding both to be irrelevant.
- We should only listen to the Holy Ghost on long car rides when streaming is unavailable.
- You tune in for the music (comfort), but end up listening to ads (answers to questions you didn’t even ask).
This is kind of a pointless activity anyway, because the lesson then goes on to explain that lesson 5 was about “receiving” personal revelation, but lesson 6 is about “recognizing” personal revelation. So last week we received it, but didn’t know what it was. Now we’re going to recognize that thing we received last week. Suspense ended.
So what is revelation? The lesson lists lots of things with caveats for each:
- Visions and dreams happen, but they are very rare.
- A still small voice, but it’s usually not heard, just felt.
- New ideas (caveat to come) or flashes of insight.
- Burning in the bosom, but it’s a metaphorical burning.
- Peace to your mind – hey, no caveat on this one!
- Answers will come, but in the Lord’s own time, not yours.
When is it not revelation?
- When you try to shake hands with it, but it refuses.
- When flaming swords are involved.
- When it’s what you secretly want anyway.
- When you found it on The Drudge.
Dallin Oaks said:
“But when one person purports to receive revelation for another per-son [sic] outside his or her own area of responsibility—such as a Church member who claims to have revelation to guide the entire Church or a person who claims to have a revelation to guide another person over whom he or she has no presiding authority according to the order of the Church—you can be sure that such revelations are not from the Lord”
I don’t know why “per-son” is written that way, but it is. 
The good news is that the creepy guy at BYU who said he had a revelation you were supposed to marry him was just a stalker and his revelations were not binding on you. Whew! Hopefully he won’t turn you over to the Honor Code Office for giving him impure thoughts.
This might coincide with another thing identified as not revelation by the lesson:
Sometimes what we think is a revelation may be a projection of our own desires.
Since the election, a lot of the news has been about fake news or alternate facts. Ben Park wrote a fantastic OP on why alternate facts are de rigeur for Evangelicals and other fundamentalists (which likely includes some Mormons). From his article:
A particular segment within the Evangelical community, especially those with a fundamentalist bent, worked to establish competing realms of intellectual authority. When faced with new challenges from “secular” truths regarding history, biology, psychology, and other fields, charismatic leaders developed alternate realms that reaffirmed more conservative “truths.” Those who pushed things like evolution could therefore be tactically disarmed because their arguments were based on a different set of values: their ideas were not “anointed” by God, and thus dismissed.
The result of this were the rise of anti-intellectual, populist, and charismatic leaders who, though lacking in credentials and credibility, could draw an immense following. . . These and other individuals capitalized on this artificial bubble that shields them from actual research, peer-review, and criticism. They have made a successful career selling “alternative facts.”
The lesson refers to Oliver’s failed attempt to translate:
D&C 9: 7 Behold, you have not understood; you have supposed that I would give it unto you, when you took no thought save it was to ask me. 8 But, behold, I say unto you, that you must study it out in your mind;
So revelation and intuition should be sought after study and learning, not instead of them.
The lesson cautions against just believing a thing because it’s comfortable, familiar, comes from a religious or other authority, or we’ve personally failed to do the heavy lifting. Don’t fall prey to the fake news or “alt facts” of personal revelation, as it were. Sometimes you have to crack a book before you are ready to receive revelation.
 OK, fine, I’m sure some of you have actual radios. I’m sure some of you sit around listening to them, even when you’re not in your car. Let’s not make this entire discussion about that, shall we?
 It’s probably one of the church’s Key Performance Indicators for success. Maybe it’s one point for every son a family has.