Holy Ghost vs. a Good Movie
Don't Underestimate the Power of the Spirit
I am LDS (a Mormon), and I have received a witness from the Holy Ghost. It was manifest by at least three means: a warm, loving feeling, it came with additional insight to the answer I was seeking, and it inspired me to watch out for my neighbor.
Non-LDS people tend to avoid feelings from the heart while searching for learning or inspiration. This is due to their interpretation of some scriptures found in the Bible, one of them being Matt. 15:18-19: "But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies."
It is true that evil can come from the heart, but the scriptures don't collectively say that the heart will produce only evil. Other scriptures paint a positive image of the heart, especially in those people that apply themselves:
Solomon pleased the Lord by asking for an understanding heart so that he could discern between good and evil (1 Kings 3:9-10). We will find knowledge of God if we apply our heart to understanding (Prov. 2:2). Jeremiah said that the word of the Lord was in his heart as a burning fire (Jer. 20:9). Jesus taught that people can understand with their heart (Matt.13:15). "A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh (Luke 6:45). Two disciples felt their hearts burn within them while Jesus taught them on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:32). On the day of Pentecost, the people were pricked in their heart (Acts 2:37) and were motivated to repent and be baptized. Paul taught that with the heart, men believe unto righteousness (Rom.10:10).
Jesus said He was going to send the Holy Ghost. In John 14:26, it says, "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
Stories About the Holy Ghost
My Own Experiences
A man once asked me, after I told him I've felt the burning of the Holy Ghost, "What is the difference between the warm fuzzies of the Holy Ghost, and a good movie?" My answer was, "You are grossly underestimating the power of the Holy Ghost, if you compare it to a man-made movie."
I told him that the witness of the Holy Ghost is unmistakable, and very powerful. His power is light years beyond what man can produce. I once wished for a vision, so that I could be sure of what God's Word and will for me was. But when I received this witness from the Holy Ghost, then I knew that a vision wasn't necessary. It was every bit as convincing as a vision.
When I remember a good movie ten years after I've seen it, much of what I felt during the movie is gone or forgotten. But when I remember each witness I've received from the Holy Ghost, the strong feelings return, and I can feel anew the great Love, Peace and Enlightenment I received from the Holy Spirit. That is one way of describing the difference. Any description of the more significant differences is beyond my ability to write. Notice, in the video below, when the Latino sister is recalling her witness. The tears rolling down her cheeks is because the Holy Ghost is revisiting her again as she remembers the story.
I'm not trying to convince you to take on my beliefs. Nor am I trying to convince you that my manifestation is the only good type of witness, or that its message is the only true communication from the Holy Ghost. Many who do not believe in my religion have had witnesses. Jesus told us to watch for the Holy Ghost and to learn from Him. He didn't say that only the LDS or Mormons were qualified. Those who earnestly seek inspiration from God are entitled to such learning, and it's the mission of the Holy Ghost to verify the truth of such experiences.
God loves us all, and He knows that not all will embrace the truths He puts forth, while living on this earth. Therefore, He will inspire whoever He can with truths and ideas for good living, until such time that we will be in a position to receive from Him our ultimate rewards. In Eph. 4:11-14, we read something that supports this idea: "And he gave some, apostles, and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive."
Denial of the Holy Ghost
Why do you suppose that Jesus said that blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is unforgivable? (see Matt. 12:31)
Think about it.
Well, it's easy to not believe in the words of Jesus, as evidences by those who walked away from Him, and by the fact that people crucified him. If they truly had received a witness that He was telling the truth, do you think that they would have crucified Him? Jesus said He would send the Holy Ghost for our learning and reminded us that the Holy Ghost testifies of all truth and of Jesus (see John 14:26 and 15:26). Because the witness of the Holy Ghost is so unmistakable, then to turn from that and deny that He witnessed to you (which constitutes blasphemy against Him), then that is why it is unforgivable, because you are denying or ignoring a witness that put you in perfect knowledge of what the Holy Ghost gave to you.
Look up as many scriptures as you can about the Holy Ghost or Holy Spirit. You will see that you can, indeed, depend on your heart - if your intentions are sincere - to receive teachings from the Holy Ghost, and to give you a witness of the things you are taught by Him.