by James R. Watkins
I am always encouraged when I see some element of God being mentioned in our mainstream culture, but more often than not, I see the opposite.
For example, when a shooting takes place where 17 people get killed by a 19 year-old boy, someone who obviously did not have love in his heart, no one seems to talk about the fact that the suspect was completely devoid of love, he was separate from the rest of us, from reality itself, which enabled him to inflict so much harm upon others. Only a person lacking love could pursue this course, the course he chose.
I am reminded by the quote from the Urantia Book where it says:
(111:4,4) “Any civilization is in jeopardy when three quarters of its youth enter materialistic professions and devote themselves to the pursuit of the sensory activities of the outer world. Civilization is in danger when youth neglect to interest themselves in ethics, sociology, eugenics, philosophy, the fine arts, religion, and cosmology.”
The point being that our society is in danger because we completely ignore the spiritual life, spiritual contemplation and eternal realities. Instead, our institutions promote materialism, vacuous temporal pursuits, and offer no real education for the self, except to promote self as the center of the universe.
The fact is, most people are spiritually illiterate. We are culturally deaf to spiritual leadings because we are distracted by looking always feeling the need to look into that little black screen, or we allow ourselves to be distracted from our thoughts by music being piped in everywhere, video screens in every direction, the constant stimuli of the outer world – which leaves little or no time for contemplation of the inner world, where our soul, like a seed wanting to be watered, withers from the lack of spiritual nutrition.
Yes, we are in a spiritual dark age. Evil is the absence of good – just as cold is the absence of heat; where there is no God, there is a dark void. Sin, after all, is an attitude of the self in relation to the Whole, and when a fellow human inflicts evil we all suffer its repercussions, as stated in the Urantia Book:
“Sin is never purely local in its effects. The administrative sectors of the universes are organismal; the plight of one personality must to a certain extent be shared by all. Sin, being an attitude of the person toward reality, is destined to exhibit its inherent negativistic harvest upon any and all related levels of universe values.”
In other words, the less God we have in our lives the more potential error, sin and inequity there is that can and does occur.
Until such time when people begin to realize they live in a larger reality, one that also encompasses the entire cosmos of fellow beings as one family, one which has purpose and works toward divine goals, one in which we view ourselves as children of a loving spiritual Creator, we will continue to languish in spiritual darkness, no matter how much material prosperity we amass, and we will continue to see evil played out on the stage of humanity in this so-called age of Science and Reason.