Q: Does The Urantia Book discuss any hitherto unknown human senses or abilities?
A: The authors of The Urantia Book tell us that our average sense endowment numbers twelve. Now, I am only aware of the usual five sense—sight, smell, taste, feeling, and hearing, so, it gets one to thinking... They call these twelve sense "physical-sense endowments, " and I wonder if at least one of them could be connected to the legacy of animal fear that we have inherited. Fear can be a very visceral reaction. I also wonder if one of our senses could be connected to discernment of the passage of time or our ability to discern the presence of another personality—or non-personality. Additionally, our bodies possess an innate ability to heal themselves. Perhaps memory is considered a "sense." And then, there's always the "sense of humor and the "sense of fairness, " or the "sense of right and wrong." Or, it could just be that our senses simply fall below what is considered "average" when taken in total against all humans in the cosmos. It is an interesting subject to think about, right?
Here is a quote:
The average special physical-sense endowment of human beings is twelve, though the special senses of the three-brained mortals are extended slightly beyond those of the one-and two-brained types; they can see and hear considerably more than the Urantia races. p564:5 (49:4.3)
I find it interesting to conjecture whether we would have developed keener senses had Adam and Eve not defaulted, and we had had the benefit of their superior life plasm. Consider this quote:
Both the physical and spiritual visions of Adam and Eve were far superior to those of the present-day peoples. Their special senses were much more acute, and they were able to see the midwayers and the angelic hosts, the Melchizedeks, and the fallen Prince Caligastia, who several times came to confer with his noble successor. They retained the ability to see these celestial beings for over one hundred years after the default. These special senses were not so acutely present in their children and tended to diminish with each succeeding generation. p851:3 (76:4.5)
I say it is a pity, for I would love to be able to see our friends in the spiritual realms.
We can look forward to some extra-and enhanced senses once we pass through the portals of death and assume our morontia existence, as in this quote:
The morontia senses are seventy, and the higher spiritual orders of reaction response vary in different types of beings from seventy to two hundred and ten.p154:5(14:2.3)
And to give you an idea of how inadequate our physical senses are in discerning spiritual reality, consider this quote about the central universe and Havona:
None of the physical beings of the central universe would be visible to Urantians. Neither would any of the physical stimuli of those faraway worlds excite a reaction in your gross sense organs. If a Urantia mortal could be transported to Havona, he would there be deaf, blind, and utterly lacking in all other sense reactions; he could only function as a limited self-conscious being deprived of all environmental stimuli and all reactions thereto. p154:6(14:2.4)
Finally, as to special abilities, I think that mortals are variously gifted with many different abilities—in art, music, writing, mathmatics, science, etc. Some people have amazing abilities that no one even understands—like savants in math or music or memory who are otherwise seemingly mentally retarded. Some of these folks are an endless source of wonder for us all.
Here's a quote that helps illuminate some of this for us:
There are three possible sources of special human ability: At the bottom always there exists the natural or inherent aptitude. Special ability is never an arbitrary gift of the Gods; there is always an ancestral foundation for every outstanding talent. In addition to this natural ability, or rather supplemental thereto, there may be contributed the leadings of the Thought Adjuster in those individuals whose indwelling Adjusters may have had actual and bona fide experiences along such lines on other worlds and in other mortal creatures. In those cases where both the human mind and the indwelling Adjuster are unusually skillful, the spirit artisans may be delegated to act as harmonizers of these talents and otherwise to assist and inspire these mortals to seek for ever-perfecting ideals and to attempt their enhanced portrayal for the edification of the realm.
Thanks for this great question. I hope this reply is useful to you...I appreciate the chance to think about this most interesting subject with you!