What Exactly Is A Urantian?

What is the difference between the Christian and Urantia Worldview?

By James R. Watkins

In that I was brought up in what I consider to be a typical Judeo-Christian culture, and having spent the better part of forty years studying the Urantia papers, I think I can offer some perspective on the differences between what a Christian believes and what a Urantian believes, as well as what similarities there are between a person who is Christian and a person who believes the Urantia Book is a divine revelation.

For example, most Urantians completely agree with the concept that Jesus was the Son of God, that he was sent here as a human being, and was and is the Lord Jesus Christ. Both Christians and Urantians’ believe that we all have eternal life, that Jesus is our savior, and that when Jesus taught about God, he was personally representing God the Father in the flesh. This is the bedrock of the Christian faith, and the Urantia Book, which declares that Jesus was a revelation of new spiritual truth to mankind.

Where we begin to differ, or separate our views are discussed below. It is also pertinent to the greater discussion that people in the future should probably know what exactly a Urantian is, so as to differentiate itself from mainline Christianity, so that people don’t think the Urantia Book is some off-shoot, or New Age fringe element of the Christian church.

So what are the primary differences between what a Christian believes and what a Urantian believes? Before we answer this question, let me first share the commonalities between Christians and Urantian faith, and they are:

  1. The belief in the divinity of Jesus
  2. The belief that there is a God, a father of all creation, that life – and our existence – is part of God’s plan
  3. The belief in an eternal life where we become spirit beings who continue to worship God in the afterlife
  4. That the Jewish people were chosen to introduce monotheism into the world, and they were the first to recognize the one true God above all other Gods
  5. That there is sin and evil
  6. That Adam and Eve were real
  7. People possess souls

Where we differ would require volumes of text, but in a nutshell, here are the primary differences between what Christians believe and what Urantians do not believe:

  1. That you have to accept Jesus as your savior in order to be “saved”
  2. That there is a hell
  3. That Jesus was the only Son of God
  4. That Adam and Eve were the first humans
  5. That evolution is false
  6. That the Bible is the “Word of God,” thereby the final spiritual authority in book form.
  7. That no other writings or revelations can be added to Scripture
  8. That all other religions are false
  9. That Jesus had to die in order for our sins to be forgiven by God
  10. That the Church is the mediator between God and Man
  11. That Mary was a virgin
  12. That the Devil is the creator of sin in our world
  13. That man “fell” from Grace because of the knowledge of eating the forbidden fruit
  14. That Eve was the mother of sin and her sin cursed humanity

Here the basic tenets of the Urantia faith, or ideology:

  1. That God is a spiritual creator of all spirit-indwelt human beings
  2. That everyone has soul-potential
  3. That Jesus came to show us a new revelation of God the Father
  4. The Atonement Doctrine (the belief of Jesus dying for our sins) is wrong
  5. That there are angels and other spiritual beings who co-exist with us, but that we are limited by material vision so we don’t’ see them, though they do see us and try to minister to us
  6. That as long as you have some level of belief, you will survive mortal death and be given a new body in which to continue on (and that you will remember your life and your fellows from this world when you get to the next)
  7. That there are trillions of worlds just like ours, filled with beings like ourselves who also have the same spirit in them
  8. That evolution is the technique God uses for life to progress
  9. That the Urantia Revelation was not written by humans, but really did come from spiritual beings who were given the task of introducing new spiritual truth to mankind
  10. . That Science and Religion should co-exist. One measures facts, the other, truth.

Now when you compare something like this to biblical teachings and “the sacred history” of the last few thousand years, you begin to appreciate the vast gulf that exists between what the Urantia Book presents and what Christianity presents in its present form.

Comparing the Bible to the Urantia Book is like comparing Aesops Fables with Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity.

The Bible, written between 800 BC and 400 AD, had a fixed viewpoint on reality, one extremely limited by the lack of scientific knowledge, and produced mostly by men who were searching for God and spiritual truth, but were still vastly backward in their understanding of the universe at large, not to mention the ignorance of their own history.

This is not to take away from the spiritual truths of the Bible, and there are thousands of them; the Bible represents the history of man searching for God, and finding him, and also captures enough of the essence of Jesus‘ teachings to immortalize it.

But the Urantia Book brings those truths and many other relevant concepts into much clearer focus by declaring, first and foremost, that God is at the center of all things, but also that scienctific discovery of the great truths of reality is not contradictory to the premise that the universe is a spiritual enterprise, and not random.

The Urantia Book teaches us something of the nature and growth of the Supreme creator and preaches truth, beauty and goodness as beings Gods nature.

Most religions avoid Science, the Urantia Book embraces it.

Most religions focus on tradition and cultural inheritances and practices. The Urantia Book clarifies where those traditions came from, and the purpose they served in helping to develop man’s spiritual quest.

Most religions represent man’s desire for knowledge and truth, The Urantia Book tells us what that truth is and why we desire it.

Not a bad thing at all. But Christians makes a huge mistake when they declares its supremacy over all spiritual truths, even to not recognizing when new truth has been revealed, as in the case of The Urantia Book.

Some have said the Urantia Book is to the New Testament what the New Testament is to the Old Testament, a fulfillment of the ages, a confirmation that the truths in the Bible are in fact, based on an essential truth, which is we are divinely endowed and that life has real spiritual purpose, even beyond the flesh.

And so this statement is really a declaration of my hope that someday, future Christians will begin to see that Urantians’ are really fighting the same fight, which is to reveal God to our brothers and sisters so that they can rejoice in the realization that they too, are citizens of this new reality that encompasses not just our planet, but the entirety of creation.

Think about that the next time you are sitting alone at night gazing up at the stars, that is creation, and you are a part of it.


To My Fellow Humanist, No Thanks

by Jim Watkins

A group called Good Without God wanted its city to remove a cross that was erected to honor a World War I veteran.

The case, like many, seeks to uphold the seperation of Church and State, with which I firmly agree. The State should never foster or inhibit religion, it’s in our Constitution, and it is relevant because no government should ever pick sides on which faith it supports.

But by the same token, Good without God is a misnomer. How can good without God be real? Good comes from God, good is God in action, his three personality traits are Truth, Beauty and Goodness. God is the source of all that is good, for goodness would not be possible unless human beings could percieve such a divine attribute; as spiritual beings we observe good, therfore, Good Without God contradicts reality.

I understand there are people who choose to believe there is no such thing as God. To many the idea is slavish, unreasonable and archaic. Humanism is exalted as altogether reasonable; hence it becomes defacto materialistic to assume that since no one can prove God exists, such a belief is unreasonable.

But Humanists miss the point. To assume there is no deity is to profess ignorance of origins. We have no idea why human will creatures have evolved, Science can tell us how, but not why.

Only a belief in a first or original source personality can explain why there is personality. If all things material have a source point of origin, then where does individual perception, personality interpretation find its beginnings?

The ‘why’ is God’s purpose.

If one chooses to believe there is no ‘why’ or purpose to the existence to life, then that is a belief system, a postulate that is also unverified.

An argument could be made that any Athiest group who demands the removal of religious symbols is asking for the prohibtion of religion – which is unconstitutional – and is asking the government to assert on one specific belief system or the other. In this case a non-believer is asserting his/her non-belief as factual, but unverifiable, over another who does believe in deity purpose, a belief which is also yet unverifiable.

Here’s the irony. That such sons of God should debate the ethics of governing is in and of itself, proof of mans’ desire to be godly and more perfect in his governorship, a spiritual principle.

To the Humanist, no thanks. I’ll stick with my belief system until you can prove to me that God does not exist.

An Argument for the Existence of God

   An argument for God is but a mere belief that life is more than just materially derived.
   I hold in my hand a Sandisc memory card. It was created by human beings. We took organic material, using elements from the ground, and with precision and coordination, created a mechanism that performs a specific task. It moves binary data from one place to another. We created it so that it can serve a purpose, indeed an apparent invisible purpose to most.
   Could not the same argument be made with regard to our solar system? Organic materials, designed and aligned to perform a certain function, whereas which comes into existence a world of living, breathing, functioning human beings, themselves consisting of organic materials, designed and arranged in such a way as to be able to perform a certain function, and yet we would observe such a phenomena such as life itself, as being accidental, its purpose invisible.
   An argument for God is an affirmation, an acknowledgement, that there is order and purpose in an otherwise material existence, even if we, in our present state, are ignorant to its underlying purpose.

What is the difference between God and The Supreme Being?

Many people understand the concept of a perfect Deity, an existential Creator, but some people might not grasp the nature of a Supreme Being, or they do not yet understand the difference between an existential Creator and an experiential Deity.

Back in the theoretical ‘beginnings of things’, we can grasp the concept of Deity being perfect; in fact the only personal being in the entire cosmos who is existentially perfect “in all His ways,” the I AM, is God. He was “born” perfect.” though I use the term “born” because finite beings must have theoretical beginnings. In reality, God, an eternal Deity, has always been existentially perfect.

But God desires to be more than perfect of his own right, and by divesting his perfection through creation, God becomes experientially perfecting. 

In a sense, The Supreme Being is in the embryonic stage of existence, and this process involves personality growth through the experience of each and every part of the whole. Each of us, a unique and original spiritual expression of Gods’ infinite personality become parts of this whole, which is the Supreme Being – that stage when God has exhausted every possible expression in his creation.

Each of us, as we ascend towards perfection through actual living experience, represent the attempt of God to move from being existential to experiential. 

So we pray to a personal Father who is the existential Creator, the perfect and highest personality in the universe. But the Supreme Being is still yet to come only because God, the existential Deity, isn’t done experiencing every facet of personality existence, which he does through his created personalities of time and space, including his mortal children of time and space (that would be you and me).

The Supreme Being represents the whole of Deity expression as yet incomplete, unfinished, and since we are part of Deity because we are a part of God (or he is part of us), it is in our choosing of perfection attainment (i.e., being a better person) that determines how, where and when Gods’ final expression of experiential AND existential perfection will merge and find complete expression in the Supreme Being.

When you view creation as being a body, with God as the Mind, and each of us as a living cell in this body, then it becomes more clear that the parts of creation contribute to the whole of creation, the someday emergence of God’s next phase of existence, the Supreme Being.

This truth alone should forever dispel the human notion that life is worthless.

One thing I have noticed about today’s society is that we don’t say “God Bless You,” enough when we talk with people.

Maybe its an old custom, but I like it when someone says that phrase to me. I find it comforting. It makes me pause for a moment and appreciate social contact, that the person saying it has a heart and is truly conveying a sentiment that we should all reflect upon from time to time.

So often in life we forget that our efforts do matter, and our relationships do count. Saying “God bless you” is a salutation that goes back far in time. Spit exchange, what eventually evolved into kissing, was another salutation, but I am sure most people wouldn’t want me to share my saliva with them, but saying ‘God bless you’ puts that extra care into our common everyday dealings with fellow travelers in this life.

Although I am sure someone might be offended by saying “God bless you,” in their minds, especially if they are an ardent atheist, they might think, “What do you mean God bless you? what, you think there is a god? how dare you offend me with such notions, what are you, a neanderthal?!” and you can just hear the offended persons thoughts spiral into a heated moment of utter resentment. “How dare they presume that I believe in some non-sensical deity…”

When offering that extra kind phrase, one that should, as I say, give pause to the idea that our life has purpose and that God cares about us, remember that it is always a good thing to inject some “positive vibrations” as you go about your day., and saying ‘God bless you,’ is a simple way to do so, even if the other person doesn’t necesarrily subscribe to deity personification.

Oh, and by the way, God bless you for reading this. You took five minutes out of your day to give me your attention and consideration. I hope the good Lord graces you with good fortune.

 

The Other Cloud

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While you were sleeping last night, every search you attempted, every comment you tweeted, every photo you took and even every song or movie you downloaded was all put on the cloud, stored there forever.

As time passes, your ‘account,’ continually records, sorts, indexes and files away everything that makes up you.

It’s a miraculous thing that everything we do and who we are is stored away, ready to access whenever we want to relive or replay the moment. Our personality-profiles are aggregated, and eventually, the cloud stores all. Now multiply this by six or seven billion people, and you can faintly conceptualize how we are all sharing space on this magnificent storehouse that we now commonly refer to as The Cloud.

Except that the cloud I am talking about isn’t owned by Google, Facebook, Microsoft or Apple. This cloud is of a super-material realm, and how our personal information gets to this cloud is itself miraculous.

Our minds capture and build upon our life experiences; our thoughts are recorded, our actions are remembered, and the whole that is our life is eternally stored away.

This is what constitutes the makeup of our soul, the US that is but the continual layering of those things which have meaning to us shapes our future selves, our future existence, our emerging identity.

So the next time you think of The Cloud, stop to consider that someone is already accessing our life experience and storing it away for future reference. Only this cloud is managed by the Universal Personality, the caretaker of the Original Cloud, who lives our lives with us, every moment and every day, ‘uploading’ our growing personalities for our future estate.

(Page 1240.1):

“True it is, you mortals are of earthly, animal origin; your frame is indeed dust. But if you actually will, if you really desire, surely the heritage of the ages is yours, and you shall someday serve throughout the universes in your true characters — children of the Supreme God of experience and divine sons of the Paradise Father of all personalities.”