We are Family
I was 23 years old in 1971, when my 22 year old husband of less than 5 months committed suicide. We had both graduated from Cornell and that is where he jumped off a bridge on the campus. I was in a complete state of shock and disbelief.
A couple of months later, I found myself living on the island of Jamaica with two friends. I had first seen The Urantia Book a few months before Allen's sudden death. We both learned of it when we were living in Colorado for a short time, and a mutual friend would read passages from it to us. I didn't understand what he was talking about, but I recall having a notion that this was a holy book.
I grew up in a mostly secular, intellectual Jewish household. I was the only child of Jewish parents, adopted at the age of 4 months. It was many years later, after having read The Urantia Book a couple of times, that I learned my original parents had been Holocaust survivors. But I grew up knowing practically nothing about God or Jesus. I was terrified at the thought of dying and existing no more. All I knew of Jesus was that he was someone the Christians believed in and an occasional curse word around our house.
I began reading The Urantia Book shortly after arriving in Jamaica with my two friends. Ron, who had read the excerpts in Colorado had gone to Ithaca, New York, along with his girlfriend, and now we were together in Jamaica where Ron had reached the section on Thought Adjusters. I don't recall the exact passage, but his words deeply resonated truth to me. So I began reading about Thought Adjusters and read ravenously. I also took walks in the beautiful coastal village where we stayed, and started having little talks with God. I had been reading the book for a few weeks when I had, what I like to think of as, MY SPIRITUAL AWAKENING.
I was on the beach with my two friends on a beautiful afternoon. We had the beach to ourselves on this magnificent day in tropical paradise, with crystal clear turquoise water and soft, silky sand below. I was miserable, though. Tears poured down my face as I sobbed. Deep within I felt responsible for Allen's death. I felt compelled to walk out into the ocean and keep going farther and farther until I drowned. I felt that I had to kill myself to make things right within, but another part of me didn't want to die. It was a tug of war iin my heart and soul. In the midst of this anguish, I felt a presence come to me and say, in a silent voice, "You don't have to die. I love you. I don't want you to die." I was cradled in this comforting presence. I'm not sure if I immediately realized this was Jesus or the Spirit of Jesus, but I felt a deep sense of peace and and calm come over me. I was truly reborn in that instant.
Shortly after this experience I received a telegram to call home. My father had suffered a severe heart attack and was in intensive care. My mother had a series of illnesses beginning in my early teenage years. She had most recently suffered a stroke that left her both mentally and physically debilitated. I had grown up in a sheltered environment and now, all of a sudden, everyone and everything I knew was shattered. Yet, I was filled with the Spirit and saw the world compleely differently. For the first time, I experienced a real sense of hope, excitement, even delight. How could this be? Everyone around me it seems was dead, dying or deathly ill and I was uplifted and positive.
In the decades that have passed, my adoptive parents both died. I was never able to find my birth parents or any members of my original family, although I did find out information about them. I've never remarried or had any children, so I don't know what it is to be related to someone genetically. My family are the kindred spirits I connect with spiritually. I see that we are all related, children of our Father, children of God. I rejoice in the gifts God has given and although I've had some dark and trying times, I have to say that The Urantia Book has helped me through and given me a joyful, postive outlook on life. I am regularly comforted in the loving arms of our Master and uplifted by the spiritual forces that so lovingly minister to us all.
Thank You Father
As a child, I was always really spiritual. I prayed all the time, when ever and where ever I could. When I was about 5, I always asked my dad about things I didn’t understand. I remember watching a news story about a little girl about my age dieing in a flood that happened. The moment I saw this, I turned to my dad and asked him why God let her die. He thought for a moment, eating some peanuts like he does, and said “Because God decided it was her time.” This affected me a lot, considering this was the first time I ever knew about death. I started to pray like I always did.
It was not unusual for people to find me in my room just talking to God about regular things, like how I love Him like my dad, that I can’t see Him but I sure do know He’s here with me. I would often ask me if He could talk back. I never really read the Bible, and I went to church only a few times that I can remember. I used to lie in bed at night and ask God about Jesus. I asked Him if He could help me to understand Him better.
When I was 8, I used to think a lot about why things in the world were so bad. I asked God one day “Why can’t we all just be in Heaven?” Not very long after, it occurred to me that we are here so we can learn. We have to go through this life so we can choose between good and evil, because God wants us to love Him, but He would never force us to, so we have to make that decision. I think this was one of those few times where the Thought Adjuster found it wise to give me a little bit more understanding.
When I was twelve I went to my grandparent’s house in Oregon for the weekend. I found a Bible there and read Revelations. After I read it my first thought was “Someone made a mistake, God would never do this!” This really bugged me. Later that year I went to a Bible study class. I was not so sure about the Bible, being as I had never read more than a few pages of it. The pastor started out by saying to everyone that Jesus died on the cross for our sins, and that only by his death can God forgive us.
This really bothered me, because I knew very little about Jesus, but I knew a lot about God, I mean I talked to Him all the time; and this just didn’t seem like Him. I said to him “Are you sure? Why does someone else have to die? Why can’t I just ask God myself for forgiveness?” He explained to me that Adam and Eve first sinned, and all men have sinned since. He said that God is righteous and sin must be punished. He gave me a Bible to read, and for almost a year I was immersed in it.
After I had read a lot of it, my stepmother and I had a talk about evolution and creationism. After a while she said “Here, I want to give you something.” She gave me “A History of the Urantia Papers.” We went to pick up a pizza in town and I asked her about the Urantia Book all the way there.
One day later I bought my own copy. I read the first 100 pages, and I was in a dilemma: The Bible or the Urantia Book. It was then that I went directly to God, my last resort. This was my prayer: “Father, I’m not talking to the Eternal Son or Jesus or the Infinite Spirit or the Holy Spirit or whatever, I’m talking to you. You have always been there for me, and now I am unsure what to believe. If Satan does have an influence, I ask for you to make sure he has no power in this. This is for my eternal soul, and I need you. Please my Father, help me, and give me the wisdom to see the truth.” At that moment, I felt like the Father talked back, and it just hit me that God is my Father, Jesus is my Brother, and God is with me.
I was reminded that nothing that is for God can be against Him, and the Urantia Book is definitely for God. I believe that this was the Adjuster speaking to me, and ever since me and the Father have been close.
At first it seemed too weird
My Father died around 1982. I was depressed for a while after his death. I felt sad at the loss of his company on this earth. I was happy for the foundation of love he left me to build on. Both feelings made me cry tears of sadness and tears of joy. I was emotional at the time.
My wife at the time became disturbed at the amount of time it was taking me to get over my dad's death. About six months after his death, I had a healing dream about him. When I awoke I felt a pressure or tightness had lifted off of my chest area that I wasn't even aware was there.
Almost immediately after that I became interested in researching spiritual things that interested or bothered me in my life. One was the fact that I wanted to know what happened to the missing years in Jesus’ life. What happened between 13 and 30? I began to ask questions of my friends, co-workers and family. I heard about the lost books of the bible, and the council of Nicea around 410 AD or so where it was decided what writings would be included in the Bible. I wanted to know what happen to the ones that weren't included? Did any of them have information about Jesus’ life.
I went to library and researched and scanned and read books. One was a brand new fragmented translation of Cave Scrolls recently found in the Holy Land. It supposedly had writings of St. Matthew. They were too fragmented, just in the beginnings of translation and though they had many differences from the bible, none seemed very important.
I read a book by an American minister from the South from about the 1850's. A purported revelation describing a religious sect called the Essenes and how Jesus supposedly passed through all their teachings and even reached the level of Divine. One test was in a Pyramid where he passed a test of denial of sexual desire displaying only pure spiritual Love. The best book I found was “Jesus, the Son of Man” by Kahlil Gibran the author of "The Prophet". He translated these letters about Jesus written by those who knew him at the time, from Ancient Aramaic which he learn from monks in a Monastery as a youth.
Around the time I was researching Jesus, a friend of mine gave me "The Urantia Book" I began to browse and review the index. My friend liked a lot of Science Fiction and in my brief review I wasn't interested. He urged me to at least read the part about Jesus. I said O.K. but didn't.
About a year later while exploring another interest in Electro-magnetism (I wanted to find a source of energy that would produced more energy than it needed to create it.) I figured that the earth's magnetic fields would give up energy when something passed through it's lines of force by changing the polarity on the object to attract it to the line of force and repulse it after momentum pushed the object through the line of force. I met a family friend at a party and he said the Urantia book spoke of energy like that. He also mentioned that it spoke of other scientific discoveries before they were discovered and that it spoke of others that hadn't been discovered yet.
So it was that after about a year or so on top of my dresser I began to look for answers to my energy questions in the Urantia Book. Eventually I read the story of Jesus. I can't tell you the joy of satisfaction, the sense of completeness that I felt after reading that story. I told my sister who was into the church that it was quite simply the best story I've ever read or seen (like movies) on Jesus. I had a strong faith and had believed in earnest in Jesus since I was thirteen or 14 in Catholic School. I was truly moved by Jesus’ teachings in the Gospels. I loved the New Testament because it was Jesus’ teachings. There were many things in the Old Testament I couldn't reconcile in my heart with the teachings in the New Testament. And now I had something fulfilled inside of me. The holes that were empty had been filled so beautifully by this new story.
I had read many of Herman Hesse's books. "Journey to the East", "Siddhartha", "Narcissus and Goldman", Jung, Freud, Heddiger, Marx, Hegel, and now I finally found something that just made me feel content, good, at peace with myself.
Since that time I've bought and given away the Urantia book in Spanish, French, English and Korean, to family, friends and co-workers. I tell everybody to start on page 1344 (old blue book). So they don’t fall into the same trap I did. If they read that, then I tell them to read part 3, then part 2 and finally part 1. My sister always seemed to have reservations about my enthusiasm about the Urantia Book. I told my sister you find Truth everywhere. You find it in Nature. You find it in novels. You find it in movies. You find it at work. You find it in life. It's everywhere waiting for you to discover it. I use to tell her "do you think native's that have never heard of God or the Bible or religion or church aren't saved?" Everyone can reach God.
Now I had found a book (the Urantia Book) that reinforced the religion I had found in myself through my experience in this life. And because of this book I have become a more spiritual person. Because of this book I now read the bible and many translations of it. And I get so much more out of it. Now because of this book (and our search for truth and fulfillment in our lives) I'm a better Catholic. Another friend who reads it is a better Methodist, another a better born again Christian, etc. etc. etc. I want more and more to do God's will on earth as it is in heaven. And now that means something to me. I look forward to my progression and spiritual evolution. I await the more perfect unions with my heavenly father and my heavenly and earthly brothers. I don't fear death. Wars will come and go and eventually we will have world peace. Or if our world is physically destroyed our spiritual progression will continue.
I can now see life in terms of spiritual time, which is even much longer than geological time. Our human frailties are passing experiences and our spiritual eventuality a long awaited development. God Bless and guide us all.
Even as a child in my native Germany, I was not impressed with the "religious" introductions I was offered in either the public school system or by well meaning persons who were trying to save me from some unknown, undefined infraction, or some "sin" about which I knew nothing. These actions caused a life long personal search for the truth about God, religion and how I fit in.
Well, years of searching formal and casual studies of Christianity and most major and minor beliefs, piles of research papers, notes and collections of philosophical books, pamphlets and other data, and numerous discussions with friends, religionists and philosophical persons lead me to an individual, who, after hours and hours of listening to me, handed me The Urantia Book with an admonition to, "read, study and return this book."
After reading it again and again, I wanted to know just who had been "reading" my papers? It was as though someone had "transcribed" and hard bound my personal notes.
I must say, that "The Urantia Book" found me, not the other way around. I'm impressed, delighted and amazed, even after my 7th complete reading.
Regardless of the question about who caused this book to be written or who transcribed it into the language of the realm, I am impressed and although not much impresses me...this book does.
It seems that I have always had a direct communication with the Infinite. This was hard for me to explain to myself and others. Yet, somehow out of nowhere appeared this blue book of truth with a page opened to my eyes explaining exactly what it was I had been experiencing. God's words were unfolding before me and offering me an understanding that I had known all of my life but could not explain.
I believe that The Urantia Book is for a certain group of people who will become teachers and spiritual uplifters for those human beings who need truth to guide them out of fear and ignorance.
Those who read it are the very first on this world to have such knowledge and it speaks to those who are truly open to truth. Those who wish to serve humanity are an extension of the Infinite Spirit and Jesus' Spirit of Truth which dwells on Urantia (Earth) to minister to all human mortals who seek truth and to partake of it...
When I Was Five
As the first daughter and third child of a minister of God’s word, my single dad would study The URANTIA Book on a daily basis. It was 1974, when I was 5 years old, that he invited me to read with him. My first instruction was to read aloud the authors of what he called, "not just any book!"
I loved and respected my single "preacher" dad, and I asked him if this book had anything to do with the fact that my middle name was SUNSHINE? He just chuckled and steadily studied his "bible companion." Which he did faithfully, whenever he was not tending to his four young children, who had been left by their mother a few years earlier.
I'm 34 now, and upon my eldest brother's death, I found what I believe to be the very same copy of the book I had read with my father. Although he was my half-brother from my dad's first marriage, next to my dad, he was my best friend. They were both named CHARLIE.
As an adult my brother quoted the book to me frequently, but sadly it was not until his passing (45 days after our dad passed away) that I picked up this familiar looking book and realized that my best brother's passing was not an end, but a continuum on a path to GOD.
It was apparent that my brother had read it in its entirety many times and highlighted many different passages. I was immediately intent to study this book when I realized that it had nearly been read to pieces. So, I have since had this Urantia Book (my dad's original copy) re-bounded in leather.
I have spent a lot of time trying to figure out its meaning in more ways than one. My husband, Frank, suggested that we send The URANTIA Foundation, a certified letter to find out if there are any other readers out there. The right words are hard to find to express my joy upon receiving a call from them in Chicago, IL, to inform us of all of you.
My husband and I study it together and agree that it is, with out a doubt, the most intense reading ever. We never in our lives thought for one minute that we (mortals) were the only intelligent life in the universe. The Urantia Book goes a long way to prove to us that we are actually the least intelligent form of life, so to speak!!.
I only wish that I had taken my dad up on his offer to read it so long ago. We are just a couple of hundred pages into the TRUTH, and already exhilarated and driven to move on. Our biggest problem has been getting other people to consider it? However, life is short and as a LUPUS patient I don't have the time to worry about being referred to as a "blasphemer." So, to all of you URANTIANS out there "MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU" and don't forget to spread the love.
Reason for Being
I was born into the home of a dysfunctional family, went through the pains and sorrows of childhood, adolescence, and adult life. There were moments while alone, confusion overcame me and in my pains and sorrows I asked myself what is it all for? What is this that we call consciousness? I found myself pondering on what I felt then was chaos and madness.
For many years my soul has like that of many others, contemplated the complexity of the reason for being. My search has led me into a mental maze of concepts and ideas. I tried desperately to analyze the intricate and illusive states of consciousness, and to maybe catch a glimpse of the cause of all causes. I explored, meditated and performed self-introspection. But the “reason for being” still eluded me, as a cunning fox eludes the hound. I watched the years go by as one watches a flock of birds going south for the winter. After many years of suffering this dilemma, grace finally came and I was blessed with peace and understanding.
On July 4 1997, I came across The Urantia Book. Urantia means “earth” according to those Higher Beings that claimed to have presented this book to mankind. The book provides us with the history of our universe, our planet and us. When I found the book and started reading it I went into a state of profound awe for months. I recognized the book as the information I have been searching for most of my life. It had such an impact on my life, that I wrote an autobiography entitle Lord I Got Over without any previous experience as a writer. I also recently completed another book, with the same title as this essay, which is in the process of being published. This I did without any formal education; as a matter of fact I had to quit school before finishing high school. I grew up in a home with an alcoholic father, who made my life a living hell. I was able however to secure a High School GED while I was in the army for three years. Just about all of my education was self-taught.
During the 1980’s Dr. Raymond Moody did extensive research in the field of near death experience (NDE). Patients who experienced near-death invariably asserted that life is a continuum. After leaving this dimension we continue our evolving in other dimensions. Some patients talked about the wonderful beings they met in other dimensions. These beings are the essence of love. The patients also talked about our continuous education in those other worlds. They became aware that after death we don’t go to heaven and suddenly become perfect beings as so many religions teach. The road to perfection is a process. It will take million of years before we reach the final stage… perfection; just as it took millions upon millions of years for us to reach the current stage of our existence.
According to The Urantia Book, our planet earth crust started to cool down around one-billion years ago, that is when those Higher Beings gave our planet its name Urantia. Around six-hundred million years ago a scouting party was sent to our planet from those higher dimensions to report on its suitability for becoming a life experiment station. Around five-hundred and fifty-million years ago Higher Beings, referred to as Life Carriers, in the higher worlds initiated the original life pattern on our planet. This life pattern started in earth’s oceans when the water on our world reached a certain desired briny mixture. Our primordial ancestors were actually the slime and ooze of the ancient bed in the lethargic and warm water bays and lagoons of the vast shoreline of Ancient Island. Around five hundred million years ago primitive marine vegetable life was well established on Urantia. Around four-hundred and fifty million years ago the transition from vegetable life to animal life took place in the briny sea waters. Eventually, animal life forms evolved, left the sea and crawled upon the land.
After million of years out of the sea there were huge land animals on our planet, this occurred because the Life Carriers were manipulating the life force in the seeds that they had created and God had granted the breath of life. After million of years those huge land animals begin to disappear and smaller primates begin appearing on the scene, and many million of years later humans began to make their appearance and eventually evolving into thinking beings. It was during this period that the adjuster the spirit of God the God within came and indwelled in the minds of our ancient ancestors.
The Bible mentions in two places that God created man. In Genesis 1:27, God spoke to the word or (his Son) and said, “let us make man in our own image, after our own likeness.” In Genesis 2:7, of The Bible it states that “God made man of the dust of the ground, breathed into his nostril the breath of life and man became a living soul.” It appears that those ancient writers misunderstood the information concerning our ancient ancestors, when they reached that stage of their evolution, where the spirit of God came and dwelled in the minds of our ancient ancestors. Those writers evidently took this to be part of the creation of mankind. According to The Urantia Book this is when mankind actually became a true human being. The purpose of this indwelling was to create the soul and to lead human-kind to higher worlds or higher dimensions.
At this time, the combined forces of the God within and the free-willed human being created the living soul. The God within and the human creature are the parents of the potential immortal soul. Also, at this conjunction, the body of the individual became the temple of God… as referred to by The Bible. At this stage of their development, humans became free will creatures; free to choose to do God’s will and become immortal beings. The soul created by the God within and the free-will human beings is what survives death. This soul survival is one of the main reasons Jesus allowed himself to be put to death, he wanted to prove to us that the soul survived death. On the third day after the death of the body the soul will wake up in another dimension. It will continue to evolve if it continues to do the will of God. Otherwise that soul will sleep until the resurrection. Our living and dying (the dying of the body) has a purpose. That purpose is revealed to us more fully as we ascend to higher dimension.
Those who ascended into higher dimensions won’t immediately become prefect beings. After transcending to higher dimensions, it will take million of years of evolving in those higher worlds before one become a perfected being. In time we will become what those Higher Beings call “finaliters.” At this stage of our development we will enter Paradise where we will see the Father. We will be Super-universe administrators. We, who started out as God’s lowest “will creatures,” from this state will become a group of God’s greatest administrators in the universe. This is due to the fact that we will know every stage from the lowest to the highest, didn’t the Master Teacher, Jesus, say to us that the “last shall be first..
To the best of my ability I shared with my fellow humans, my understanding of the purpose of life at this stage of my development. Using The Urantia Book as my guide, I found my purpose in life and since then peace and serenity has been my constant companion. When one reaches the point in their life, that they understand where they are from, and know their destiny, it is a wonderful feeling.
A Quaker's Story
Nine generations ago my Quaker ancestors moved to North Carolina. We still reside here and practice the faith of The Religious Society of Friends. A key article of faith is the belief in the presence of "the light" of God in each individual.
Fifteen years ago I was browsing the stacks in the public library and the unusual title of this book seemed to leap out at me. This was my discovery of The Urantia Book. My spiritual life has not been the same since that momentous day.
As I read more I realized that this book was an example of the continuing revelation that we beleive occurs when a Quaker stands to speak in meeting for worship. After reading more, it was clear that this was a major revelation as opposed to minor revelation that can occur at any time, in any place.
The greatest discovery for me about The Urantia Book is the confirmation of the presence of The Universal Father, in the form of the Father Fragment, The Thought Adjuster.
There has always been a feeling, or a kind of knowing associated with the belief in the presence of "the light" for me, but to find an epochal revelation that actually designates and defines that presence was a spiritual gift unequaled by any other.
I read almost every day and still worship as a Quaker. The combination of the two religious practices sooth my soul and help me face the rigors of daily life. I often thank God for the "gift" of The Urantia Book, and always look forward to my next period of reading about truth, beauty, and goodness.
As a Friend, John
The Great Integrator
I'd like to share how I found the Urantia Book and how it changed my life.
I had been very interested in the theme of advanced, extraterrestrial intelligences for some time now, and in learning about the universe as a whole. This was giving me a new understanding of The Bible, but The Bible itself wasn't following my line of enquiry very far, at least as far as I could understand it. In other words, I was drifting away from 'revealed' religion, with it's heirarchy of angels and talk of a Divine Kingdom as embodied in The Bible, and towards fan sites which talk about extraterrestrials. Searching for interesting sites on the Internet, I chanced upon The Urantia Book and got far more than I had bargained for.
For the first time, The Urantia Book tied together my interest in cosmic exploration with the teachings of Jesus and of the Angelic Host. There had been a painful conflict in my mind between revealed religion on the one hand, and the idea of a 'cosmic community' of freely evolving life on the other. It seemed to me that the moral teachings of religion and the evolution of life were in quite separate spheres and I would have to choose between them at some point (as many have appeared to do). I found the 'one planet' view of most religious people I had met intellectually stifling, but at the same time I realised that their concern with the moral sphere and our treatment of others is really important and no amount of learning renders it less so. The Urantia Book pulled these two together in a divine synthesis that I could never have made myself. Never before had I seen such an integrated source of knowledge, or seen the words of Jesus in such a naturalistic and sympathetic style. Gone was the 'mysteriumm tremendum' of a God who moves in ways that are always beyond our understanding and more emphasised was a loving God who can be known. Why this is not always immediately apparent on our world was made very clear in the narratives of our world's history. Many things that had confused me for some time were cleared up, for example the question of the original rebellion and of attempts to integrate this world into the cosmic kingdom.
So now I study the Urantia Book regularly, especially through the Internet resources of Truthbook.com, each time picking up a new spiritual gem. It presents a vast universe, not abandoned to chance but ruled by angels of various descriptions. It has helped support my growing contention that even if all is not as it often should be on this world, in the universe as a whole, things are going according to plan, in a manner that shows God's benevolence. Also, whilst it says that this world is indeed something of a cosmic backwater in developmental terms, this does by no means render our deeds and attitudes here meaningless- here of all places Jesus himself chose to demonstrate the possibility of a meaningful and compassionate life despite all the obsticles.
So if, like me, you have realised that life is indeed wonderful and a constant learning process of wonder, but that this rather lost world has to an extent forgotten this and misunderstood life to be something of a burden cut off from the rest of existence, then you too can find solace and encouragement in the Urantia Book.
I only wish more of my friends and family could share my passionate interest in this work- they often assume it is nothing more than a sectarian curiosity. Yet I am leaning new and wonderful things from the Urantia Book every day, and more importantly it has given me new impetus to see this wonder reflected in the world around me. I am happy to see that I am not alone, and in fact near-infinite beings are happily evolving and learning in the universes, enjoying learning and being kind to others for it's own sake. When things are hard, they are hard for a reason and if we push through to the next level of evolution, new possibilities open up and our world becomes bigger. Having the Urantia Book confirmed so much that I had suspected all along, yet even more so opened up new lines of enquiry and contemplation. Phrases like- "The universe is not like the laws, mechanisms, and the uniformities which the scientist discovers, and which he comes to regard as science, but rather like the curious, thinking, choosing, creative, combining, and discriminating scientist who thus observes universe phenomena and classifies the mathematical facts inherent in the mechanistic phases of the material side of creation. Neither is the universe like the art of the artist, but rather like the striving, dreaming, aspiring, and advancing artist who seeks to transcend the world of material things in an effort to achieve a spiritual goal."(The Urantia Book P.2080 - §7), help me to have a sense of wonder of reality and how it creates my life according to my own choices and way of thinking. The universe is more like us, and we are more a part of it, than it might seem. I am sure I will be studying this book for the rest of my Earthly life. The fact that I found it at all shows God's love for me.
Being In The Divine Light
I found the Urantia Book when I was sixteen years old; I am 46 now, so that was 30 years ago, in 1975! I read it alone for many years, and eventually started a study group so I could share it with others.
I did not have a stable family life when I was younger. It was the cause of much tribulation. As a result of a near death experience, I realized there was no such thing as death, and that there was something out there, but what that “something” was I did not know. So, at around the age of fifteen, I began an intense spiritual search. I started my search studying Buddhism. I thought that esoteric practices were the way to enlightenment, and set out to find this experience for myself or perish trying.(Silly as it sounds now I was that intense.) After a couple experiences I quickly learned that this was not the path to enlightenment, but was left with the question as to what was. I rejected the esoteric path, the popular “new age” pseudo-religious truth, and began in earnest to study comparative religion to find the answer. Of course, all along, the truth was right inside me, but how does one communion with an Absolute It, or a vague “non-self.” At one point I finally reached the question, “Who is this person called Jesus?, and what did he really teach?” Of course, I had already rejected Christianity due to the absurdity of the atonement doctrine.
One day, while making my periodic search of the bookstores for the latest scholarly works, I stumbled across The Urantia Book sitting on the shelf. I read the table of contents and my first thought was it was just another piece of “new age” pseudo-religious garbage, but then my eyes fell upon a section in Part IV of the book, Paper 188, Section 4, entitled "MEANING OF THE DEATH ON THE CROSS."(188:4.0) I read it; I was stunned; I literally broke into tears. I purchased it and took it home to the little migrant shack I was living in at the time (I was not living at home). I read that book all night long, and the next morning when I went to work at the local YMCA where I was teaching gymnastics, I had a revelatory experience in the steam room while meditating on what I read the following evening.
It was in studying this book that the references to the indwelling divine mind I had been reading about, which in Buddhism is called the 'Buddha mind' or 'true self,' in Islam is called the spirit of Allah, in the Judeo-Christian traditions is called the indwelling spirit of God or Christ, and in the Bhagavad-Gita is termed the 'atman,' or 'inmost timeless self' which is at the same time Brahman, became personally and experientially real.
Prior to this experience I was attempting to meditate, which I was learning through the Buddhist scriptures, but not to any great success. And prior to meditating I had experimented with attempting to use my mind to achieve astral projection, but had some experiences that quickly taught me this was not an effective way to achieve spiritual growth.
At that point in my life my concept of God or Deity was of some great IT or impersonal Absolute, or some mysterious 'non-self' reflected in Zen Buddhism. I had only vague inklings of what this thing called true self might be or how I might approach finding and experiencing for myself this reality. In my religious studies I surely could see common threads of what I perceived to be truth running through them, but I didn't want to just intellectually know — I wanted to experience God personally. But my dilemma was, how does one 'know' an impersonal Absolute, or realize one's 'non-self?' It was through concepts and teachings in The Urantia Book that this gulf between the idea of an Absolute and a personal God of infinitely loving and divine parental affection was bridged and synthesized into one and the same reality. Of course now I see clearly that this dual concept of the Divine is harbored in all the great traditions.
The next day, while meditating in the steam room as was my habit, and reflecting on what I had learned the night before regarding the indwelling presence of the Adjuster and Jesus' Spirit of Truth, the simple truth of my faith sonship with God, and the joy of knowing salvation, for the first and only time I experienced the presence of a Light, which I cannot really describe in words. It was not a presence outside of me, but within me. It's even funny, at first when I saw this light (not with my physical eyes) I clearly remember thinking it was like staring into the sun, but only infinitely brighter. And then, not of my own doing, I was enveloped in this light, which I can only describe as the presence of the divine love of God. I don't have words to describe what transpired. I don't know how long it was, or God forbid, what I looked like sitting there naked in the steam room communing with God, but when I opened my eyes I was overwhelmed with this profound sense of peace and joy, even to the point that tears were streaming down my cheeks. Luckily, I was in a steam room so it was not too obvious. I went home immediately and searched the various scriptures in my library for anything referencing light, and the following two statements I found to be particularly relevant to my experience:
The Koran has a most beautiful description of what I experienced upon realizing this divine presence
Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth.
The parable of His Light is as if there were a Niche
And within it a Lamp: The Lamp enclosed in Glass;
The glass as it were a brilliant star: Lit from a blessed Tree,
An Olive, neither of the East nor of the West,
Whose Oil is well-nigh luminous, Though fire scare touched it:
Light upon Light!
The Urantia Book says the following about Thought Adjusters, which are characterized as a divine fragment of God which indwells our mortal minds:
There is a characteristic light, a spirit luminosity, which accompanies this divine presence, and which has become generally associated with Thought Adjusters.... this Paradise luminosity is widespreadly known as the "pilot light"; ... it is called the "light of life." ... this phenomenon has sometimes been referred to as that "true light which lights every man who comes into the world." (Urantia Book 1181)
Also quoting The Urantia Book:
Most of the spectacular phenomena associated with so-called religious conversions are entirely psychologic in nature, but now and then there do occur experiences which are also spiritual in origin. When the mental mobilization is absolutely total on any level of the psychic upreach toward spirit attainment, when there exists perfection of the human motivation of loyalties to the divine idea, then there very often occurs a sudden down-grasp of the indwelling spirit to synchronize with the concentrated and consecrated purpose of the superconscious mind of the believing mortal. And it is such experiences of unified intellectual and spiritual phenomena that constitute the conversion which consists in factors over and above purely psychologic involvement. (Urantia Book 1099)
Over time, I have come to understand meditation to be an attempt to achieve unbroken communion with the indwelling presence of God through balanced prayer and worship, and an inner dialogue with the divine presence. I also have found in my experience that loving service brings one closer to God through actualizing divine love in our lives through wise service to one's fellows; I view them as two sides of the same coin. I understand this inner communion as my attempt to attune my mortal mind to the indwelling divine mind of God (finding, realizing, and choosing to align my will with the divine will); to realize the spiritual values of truth, beauty, and goodness, and to actualize them in my life. I think any sane and balanced practice, if it leads one to a closer relationship with God, is worthy of our attention. And I certainly will take a warm loving hug any day, and find it easy to see God in the love and compassion of others.
Below details the final chapter in an uncertain life and the first chapter in a certain life:
I was raised in a strict Christian household, and as early as age 10 I think I fostered doubts about my religion. Since in my home, there was no such thing as other divine truth aside from the Bible, I felt as though I was a prisoner in my own skin. And since I stored these unspoken doubts concerning the only religion I was allowed to practice, I felt all the more alone and isolated. I perceived that my inability to form a relationship with Jesus was rooted in my inherent evilness which I feared I was perpetuating with my uncertain thoughts about the Bible and God. It was a vicious cycle, and I was basically just putting on a good show for my Mom until about age 17. It was then that, despite my increasingly demanding involvement in my church (head of the Youth Group Worship Band, frequent mission trips, administrative work, church twice or more a week) I felt my disguise weakening as I myself started to weaken, physically and mentally.
At age 17 I was diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa. About 8 months earlier I had decided I was too fat and then before I knew it I was being fed through a tube in the Hospital. I was unable to eat even if I really wanted to... and I certainly didn't at that point. I had absolutely given up on 'God'. I was confused by the monarchal, patriarchal God that the Bible presented to me, and I thought that he had abandoned me for my doubts and my inability to believe like everyone else in my church and family. But even that didn't make any sense, so at this point I had figured that nothing would ever make sense, no matter how hard I tried or looked. I was absolutely lost and angry at a God that I didn't understand, so I let the darkness overtake me in my illness. As I sank lower and lower I became even more desperate and sick. I did come very close to dying that winter of 2001, and if it had not been for my in–patient and out–patient treatment, I very well may have died. I certainly wanted to die.
Eventually I was stabilized enough to where I could finish high school from home, but I had not by any means, recovered. I was merely attempting to fill that gaping vacuum inside of me with anything, anything at all that wouldn’t get me sent back into the hospital.
My parents eventually decided they just couldn't handle me anymore, and agreed to let me go live in Taos, New Mexico for a while to try to get my life together. They could see that my being at home with them in Dallas was not helping the situation, and they were right. I used to visit Taos every year growing up and it really felt like my home on earth, not Dallas, which I absolutely loathed. When I was ready, it was Taos that I was finally called back to. The person that I came back for, that I had met on a summer trip to Taos 5 years earlier, was calling me back, and so was Taos. I didn't know then that infinitely bigger things were in store for me that summer.
When I arrived in Taos, I was a self–conscious, over–thinking, over–sensitive, over–emotional wreck on all sorts of medication that I had been forced to take. When Nic, the one I loved, introduced me to The Urantia Book, all of my problems slowly dissolved all around me and inside of me, as if all of those prayers that I thought were ignored were all finally being answered. Every new page I turned was like a new wonderful discovery. To read the compilations and thoughts of these beautiful celestial personalities that love us, and see all of those concepts and questions that I could never articulate being so perfectly illustrated and answered in full – it was almost more than I could handle at the time! The hole that I had been trying so desperately hard to fill was actually that space reserved for God's infinite, eternal and universal love and mercy. I just needed to ask for it, and accept it. I learned then that I was truly an ascending daughter of my divine mother and father. I had a purpose and destiny and finality in all potential. The desire for righteous adventure that itched in me was fulfilled in promise! Each day is another leap toward the Center of all things, and it will only be the blink of an eye until I embrace Jesus – the sovereign of this universe, and maybe two blinks to my Father in Paradise.
I will for my will to be submitted to the Father. Everyday I am made better; my mind becomes more spiritualized as I focus on my Godward path and leading those around me to the same attainable perfection.
Living Truth is ultimately transforming in all ways. There was no way that I could condone slinking back into a dark, confused and numb lifestyle. The Mother and Father of heaven, that I love with all of my heart and soul, have made my purpose clear to me and have shown me my little niche that I feared God had forgotten to make for me. The wonderful beauty that beckons to me and admonishes me to acknowledge, share and appreciate it here on this planet, is the same wonderful beauty that admonishes me to recreate, spread and make more beauty where there is existing darkness. I am finally truly liberated in my decision to model my life after Jesus, and in my choice to center my life on ministry with the Revelation. Even though my Mom is infuriated in my new knowledge and truth – never hearing or accepting it – I can never let that hurt me, because I FINALLY have found truth, and nothing she can say or do now can detract from that reality. I just hope that one day she will choose to see it too. I hope the same thing for every other doubting and confused person on this planet. I can't imagine standing by and letting people wallow in despair and darkness as I did, when I have such superlative light, truth, answers, and the living cure for all pain and ailments right here within The Urantia Book .
It all began when I enlisted in the US Army. I went to basic training, just like every one else, and about a month in, I noticed a friend of mine reading The Urantia Book. At the time, I had had no prior knowledge of the book, and I asked my friend about it. He told me he really did not know, that his dad had given it to him, and so I asked if I could read it.
Instantly I was hooked. Everything that I had ever wanted to know was in the book, and I could identify with the book, and its teachings in general, like I never had before. A new sense of joy came over me as I realized that what I was reading was the most complete reference quide ever to the world that I now live on. It gave me new hope and new love. I owe my life to this book and will always be willing to serve God accordingly.
Glory to The Tool Maker
I had little or no upbringing in a traditional church, but studied Edgar Cayce and other New Age concepts as a much younger man. I lived so many years of my life in the mode of self-destruction. But one very special evening after yet another weekend spent drinking and drugging, I also reached out in desparation for help and the Master came into my life, and with His help, I've remained clean & sober for about two and a half years now. God has allowed me to start over with a new life and a new sense of purpose.
About three months after finding God and Jesus, The Urantia Book came into my hands, quite unexpectedly, as I had never heard of it prior to then. It has been a great help in understanding what happened to me that evening and it continues to be the best spiritual textbook and reference book I've found so far. But I must point out that Father and Christ Michael (Jesus) came into my life as a personal experience first, then The Urantia Book second. My point being: a book, even the UB, bible or other book of uplifting truth, should never be a substitute for a personal relationship with God or Jesus.
I must point out that God has changed my life, [The Urantia Book didn't], but the UB is an exceedingly well crafted tool that helps me to better understand my true relationship to Father, Jesus Christ Michael, Creative Daughter Spirit [Mother Nebadonia], and all my brothers and sisters in God. Only a tool crafted for no purpose is truly a useless tool and once a SUPREMELY crafted tool serves it's purpose, it isn't needed nearly as often...but it is no less valuable!!!
I must give glory to the Tool Maker, and not the tool.
What's it all about?
I bought a copy of The Urantia Book about 2 years ago and flicked through it. I found it difficult to understand –I guess because I only "flicked" through it. So, I put it into the "too hard" basket...
I have now started to read the book, quietly, deeply, and slowly, and although I still think it is not the easiest book to comprehend, I am beginning to discover some really meaningful truths in its text.
Now, a part of each day is devoted to reading and absorbing the profound message of this book. Each day, for reasons I can't understand, I have a feeling growing within me that says, "Maybe I am finally coming to the end of my long search for spiritual understanding."
Whilst I have always asked myself, "What's it all about?" Like most of us I have never found the answer. Somehow, I feel that The Urantia Book is quietly and profoundly about to give me the answers.
The First Day of the Rest of My Life
I consider my discovery of The Urantia Book to be the most significant positive event in my life of 65 years. Most of my 41 years up to that point could be summed up as "preparatory experience." I learned a lot about the misery and pain spiritual misdirection can cause. I made costly mistakes, of commission and omission, affecting not only my life, but others I dearly loved. I am the quintessential example of a "Prodigal Son".
Had I taken the time to obtain The Urantia Book when I was supposed to have done so, I would not have gone to prison on drug charges in 1977, forever lost my license to teach children or juveniles, or to teach in the public schools, or pursue my other primary interests in the fields of medicine, nursing, or pharmacy. My fiancee might not have died from an overdose while I was in prison. I might not have lost every earthly or material possession. I might have had children, or... but I could go on and on. The point is, that I made serious life altering mistakes for which I paid dearly, and in many ways, I'm still paying and will continue to pay until the day I graduate from this world.
I had been told about The Urantia Book in 1975 by a wandering "hippy-pot-smoking" couple who had learned of it while passing through Boulder, CO in their VW minivan. (There were/are many UB centered groups in Boulder). A mutual acquaintance had asked me to put them up in a spare bedroom until they found work and could get their own place. I agreed, and so learned about "some new marvelous big blue spiritual book." When I asked the natural question about who wrote it, he simply shrugged and pointed up. "Some kind of space people, or Angels, or somthing like that," he said.
I was immediately intrigued by this information about a 2000 page book for which no human author was taking credit. I had searched through just about every religion that exists, along with numerous fringe cults, without hearing about this one.
But none of the main bookstores carried it and the one place that knew of one for sale said it was in a health store some distance away. I nearly bought it there some weeks later on the way to a day at the beach. I procrastinated though, saying we could stop on the way home to get it. Of course, after a day of drinks, pot, and sunburn, it was put off again.
The next couple of years were perhaps the most eventful of my life and I made a series of poor choices. They were choices I probably would not have made had I been reading The Urantia Book at that time.
That was then...this is now.
Since I've been studying the book, I've grown in so many ways I had never imagined possible. I completely quit all drugs, alcohol, even pot and cigarettes. I do have a rare glass of wine on occasion, either socially or with a meal, or sometimes a beer, never more than two. More importantly, I have received the ultimate spiritual gift. I had the experience of receiving the personal embrace of Christ Michael(another name for Jesus), at a time when I was so dejected and despondent I was contemplating taking my own life. I was assured of the fact that I was indeed a beloved child of God and that my mistakes need not be fatal. I received the personal assurance that there was still good that could be accomplished from my living and following the Will of God as best I could. That experience began "the first day of the rest of my life."
I still have a long way to go. I haven't given up chocolate yet and have to cut back on the calories. ;-) I can be lazy and procrastinate too much. (How much is too much?) I have fallen far short of what I might have done with a bit more courage and persistence. There’s always more to learn, do, or teach.
But I'm so very grateful to The Urantia Book for God, for Jesus, and all our celestial helpers that have become so real to me. I've learned more from looking at life on this planet through the lens of The Urantia Book than I could ever have done earning a roomful of doctor's degrees from temporal institutions.
Although physically limited from a permanent disability (one of the ways I’m still paying for my sins), I’m happily married, have a lovely home on a beautiful serene lakeside in a lovely gated community, plenty of good food to eat, and I lack nothing of any real consequence. I have leisure time to try to use in ways that might help or benefit others.
As for the UB’s authenticity? How do you authenticate a message from God? It can only be authenticated by the Spirit of Truth or God Fragment that indwells each normal mortal on Earth/Urantia. Certainly its own internal consistency between various portions of some one million words can also be powerful authentication, and I’ve never seen any internal contradiction that could stand the light of thorough investigation.
No revelation short of the attainment of the Father in Paradise is ever complete or finished. The UB is the most authentic universal revelation of God and the Universe to mankind to date and I stake my life and eternal soul on that conviction. Whether there could be higher individual revelations is pure speculation. There is enough in the UB to keep people profitably occupied for the next millennium, at least.
Is it essential? Nah. The real question is: Is it helpful? Does it contribute to healthy growth, development, experience, and wisdom? That answer is an unqualified YES! Nothing but seeking to find and do the Father’s will is “essential.” And that can be done in any religion, sect, cult, culture, or nation on Earth/Urth/Urantia.
What the Urantia Book does so much more perfectly than other less universal revelations is to guide us into a better understanding of God’s will in general, and for each of us specifically.
So, there you have it. Not in twenty-five words or less, and I had to put off doing other things, but that is the brief version of how I value The Urantia Book. I hope you find some helpful thoughts here.
Jere L Hough
To finite man truth, beauty, and goodness embrace the full revelation of divinity reality. As this love-comprehension of Deity finds spiritual expression in the lives of God-knowing mortals, there are yielded the fruits of divinity: intellectual peace, social progress, moral satisfaction, spiritual joy, and cosmic wisdom.