We Have Received, and We Need No More


Let me tell you something about Dr. Dilworth "Grammar is your friend!" Parkinson.

Your average 60-something man is far from intimidating, but Dil is not your average 60-something man. At 6'2'' with broad shoulders and a lean build (courtesy of the laps he swims daily), he seems ages away from qualifying for Social Security--let alone months. He speaks with a deep, cavernous, bone-rattling voice. His sentences are short. He does not wear a tie.

More than a few would-be students of Arabic have been shaken by his curt, no-nonsense unruffability. But behind his apparent Scroogeness (direct quote: "I hate parties.") lies a man who is irrepressibly endearing.

He sings in a baroque choir and goes on walks with his wife each morning. He laughs easily and infectiously. He obsesses over relative clauses ("WHICH!") and often scratches his head when explaining Arabic grammar to students. He enunciates the h in what and where.

Seven years ago, he gave a speech at BYU called "We Have Received, and We Need No More." I read its transcript for the first time a few days ago, and it changed my life. I am so grateful for my professors in the BYU Arabic department--Dil, Kirk, and Ustaaz Doug--who taught me a second language in a way that has jolted me out of years of spiritual passivity.


  1. Thanks for sharing that article.

  2. Wow, Kristi, that is exactly what I needed right now. Thank you so much for sharing that :)


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