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102:2.7 (1120.4) Evolutionary man does not naturally relish hard work. To keep pace in his life experience with the impelling demands and the compelling urges of a growing religious experience means incessant activity in spiritual growth, intellectual expansion, factual enlargement, and social service. There is no real religion apart from a highly active personality. Therefore do the more indolent of men often seek to escape the rigors of truly religious activities by a species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas. But true religion is alive. Intellectual crystallization of religious concepts is the equivalent of spiritual death. You cannot conceive of religion without ideas, but when religion once becomes reduced only to an idea, it is no longer religion; it has become merely a species of human philosophy.

After studying the Urantia Papers thoroughly for many years, is it possible, and at what point and why, might the "religious concepts" of the revelation become intellectually crystallized?


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nodAmanaV wrote:
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102:2.7 (1120.4) Evolutionary man does not naturally relish hard work. To keep pace in his life experience with the impelling demands and the compelling urges of a growing religious experience means incessant activity in spiritual growth, intellectual expansion, factual enlargement, and social service. There is no real religion apart from a highly active personality. Therefore do the more indolent of men often seek to escape the rigors of truly religious activities by a species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas. But true religion is alive. Intellectual crystallization of religious concepts is the equivalent of spiritual death. You cannot conceive of religion without ideas, but when religion once becomes reduced only to an idea, it is no longer religion; it has become merely a species of human philosophy.

After studying the Urantia Papers thoroughly for many years, is it possible, and at what point and why, might the "religious concepts" of the revelation become intellectually crystallized?


I find the answer to Enno’s question within the text he posted:  “To keep pace in his life experience with the impelling demands and the compelling urges of a growing religious experience means incessant activity in spiritual growth, intellectual expansion, factual enlargement, and social service. There is no real religion apart from a highly active personality.”
 
Concepts which do not affect/impact/determine/drive/deliver behavior are static, dead, and crystalized.  Religious living is a reaction, response, and reflection which requires expression through our primary motives in life, our intentions at every intersection of choice, our priorities of living, and our responses to every circumstance and situation faced in our life.  Once this Way of Living and Destiny Perspective is engaged, then the adventure is one of fine tuning and gaining wisdom by the experience of making better and better choices over time.  Better and better means with more insight and purpose and love….all 3 of which are progressive for the one who is attentive and focused on how best to serve….God, family, community, and the Kingdom.

I think “intellectually crystalized” might mean different things:  the ceremonial rote and repetitive creedal dogmas which deliver no great meaning or value or life adjustment in response to those; the prejudiced mind which believes it knows everything it needs to or desires which prevents growth and progressive understanding, wisdom, and truth in our expression of faith; and any substitution of knowledge and belief for faith….. which requires its expression in action.

102:2.3 (1119.8) It is difficult to identify and analyze the factors of a religious experience, but it is not difficult to observe that such religious practitioners live and carry on as if already in the presence of the Eternal. Believers react to this temporal life as if immortality already were within their grasp. In the lives of such mortals there is a valid originality and a spontaneity of expression that forever segregate them from those of their fellows who have imbibed only the wisdom of the world. Religionists seem to live in effective emancipation from harrying haste and the painful stress of the vicissitudes inherent in the temporal currents of time; they exhibit a stabilization of personality and a tranquillity of character not explained by the laws of physiology, psychology, and sociology.

110:6.17 (1211.2) The motivation of faith makes experiential the full realization of man’s sonship with God, but action, completion of decisions, is essential to the evolutionary attainment of consciousness of progressive kinship with the cosmic actuality of the Supreme Being. Faith transmutes potentials to actuals in the spiritual world, but potentials become actuals in the finite realms of the Supreme only by and through the realization of choice-experience. But choosing to do the will of God joins spiritual faith to material decisions in personality action and thus supplies a divine and spiritual fulcrum for the more effective functioning of the human and material leverage of God-hunger. Such a wise co-ordination of material and spiritual forces greatly augments both cosmic realization of the Supreme and morontia comprehension of the Paradise Deities.

:wink: 8)


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Hi Nod: GREAT QUESTION!!! I too have pondered this at some length over the years…

After studying the Urantia Papers thoroughly for many years, is it possible, and at what point and why, might the "religious concepts" of the revelation become intellectually crystallized?

I think that to some extent the answer is…. Immediately.

As a resident of a confused and backwards sphere, engulfed in rebellion and struggling under the clash of an over secular and materialistic age matched against a religious infrastructure strained to near the breaking point, I’m thinking we pretty much never had a chance at this point in the revelation, at least I’m sure I never did.

The way I see it, as soon as we open the book, the intellectual crystallization begins. For, to form word concepts into thought patterns, requires some sort of a mind framework as a background. And I’m pretty sure that in my case, the mind framework which first read the pages of this revelation was already so warped and corrupted that only a smattering of truth reached far enough inside to start what was to be a long, slow and painful transformation. And I was a fellow who had never been inside a church! I can only imagine the mind frameworks of those who had been indoctrinated for decades on how we are all sinners and have to pay some kind of blood price for salvation. Maybe it was easier for these folks, maybe not. I only know my story.

So the way I see it, we are all coming from a more or less corrupted viewpoint, even before we read the first word. And just as the followers of the Master, even his Apostles, could never really understand his message due to their preconceptions of what the Messiah was to be, so we can not understand fully the message of this Revelation. We can only, each of us, take in as much as our limited viewpoints will allow. And I see proof of this in this very forum, by the ferocity of the arguments of the various members, each limited by his or her crystallized viewpoint, vainly arguing his or her heart out, never even seeing that their argument is, in itself, the result of their own limited perspective.

NOT TO SAY THAT THIS IS A BAD THING. At least I do not view it as such. Remember, this revelation, destined to last a millennia, is less than a century old. Already it is shaking thing up, visibly, and, more importantly, below the surface.

Lucifer’s folly was to try to speed things up, to have it all now. I have patience. I see the end from the beginning, at least in my own warped and incomplete way. I can wait. I can accept being flawed. I am happy in the knowledge that I have merely tasted truth, and that I really do not even know what real Truth is, at least not yet.

That’s how I see it.


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Al....very interesting answer. I agree that the true challenge for the UB student/reader is not crystallization to come so much as prior-crystalizations of preconception ("corrupted view point") that will soon be challenged within the Papers. The dedicated truth seeker should have some advantage to the entrenched ideologue but only if experienced in both an open mind and critical thinking.

It has also been my own experience that while immediately impressed by the contents, it took a long time and several readings before I truly began to grasp and respond to the teachings sufficiently to actually adjust my perspective of reality and my responses to life's situations, circumstances, challenges, and confusions.

By that experience, then I noticed a peculiar and growing comfort with uncertainty and my inability to control outcomes by even sincere and love based choices. I began to embrace the reality of our adventurous destiny and the grander friendly universe. While not unfamiliar with prayer, still did my prayer life change in kind, quality, and frequency.

I also watched and raised two generations from birth to adult hood which taught me so much about life and love and service to others....as a one time member of the "me first and right now!" generation, many of us whom tuned in, turned on, and dropped out for a season (a very self serving and self indulgent season for some of us!). I suppose in many ways....I simply grew up and learned to lessen my own self importance and expand my lens or point/angle/field of view.

One litmus test for crystallization might be that further reading of the Papers delivers no new insight or inspiration. So far, for me, every read delivers new meaning and living brings new value to meanings...the discovery and discernment of truth must be on-going I think for the true religionist. We must grow. We grow by the doing and the choosing in life according to our highest concepts, ideals, and faith in the Kingdom....loving service.

Do we love? Do we grow? Do we serve gladly? Do we find contentment and fulfillment in love, growth, and service?

For faith and truth cannot, by definition, be crystalized. And those concepts which nurture faith and truth serve us well. There is but one reality. A growing knowledge of reality is part of that reality....ongoing education and training. Concepts which expand conceptualization and the actualization of potential are to be embraced I think. And there will be no end to expanding conceptualization and actualization in our destiny. Only the lazy mind is satisfied with current understanding IMO. We are told that curiosity is an important element in our makeup. Isn't to become crystalized also to lose interest and curiosity? Never a good thing!

8)


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Is it possible (as students of the Urantia Papers) to turn the liberty of true religious living into "a species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas?"

The intellectual crystallization of "stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas" of the Urantia Book that is.


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yeah sure it's possible to be "a student" of the teachings and fail to grasp and put into practice what they've written about the differences between a religion of authority and the religion of the Spirit. just like it's possible to be a graduate student in a theological seminary and never once had a genuine spiritual experience...just because you're reading the papers and give them your intellectual assent doesn't mean that you're mentally and spiritually capable and ready for living it out.


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Hi NOD:
Again, a deep and meaningful question:

Is it possible (as students of the Urantia Papers) to turn the liberty of true religious living into "a species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas?"

And for me, at least, the answer is a resounding YES.

I look at the teachings, their effects on me and others, and their eventual effect upon the planetary spiritual economy as follows:

If the teachings of the Urantia book are indeed correct, and this is not some sort of grand falsehood played out on a cosmic scale then:

1. there is a vast amount of spiritual growth ahead of every one of us.
2. we are starting out (individually) from zero
3. except for the UB, there are not a lot of factually reliable sources of information readily available to the common person.
4. as creatures of evolutionary will dignity, we simply do not have the capacity to grasp much of the overall scope and grandeur of the message. They gave us the cilff-notes version and we still stumble over the message, time and time again.

And while YES, we can, as the Authors state, “become as replete in our own spheres of living as God is in his” (or something like that) that sphere, cosmically speaking, is about the size of a grain of sand in the midst of the Great Sahara Desert.

So it is NECESSARY that we, as a species practice this version of “ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas”. We got nothing else. I mean, besides the UB, what else do we got? I’ll tell you what we got: we got a world where:

1. atheistic science, while on the retreat still dominates the conversation of humanity
2. the religious establishment is still trapped in the past and seems more interested in warring with each other than in even looking for the truth.
3. the public is numbed under the deluge of a fire hydrant of information coming from every possible facet of the internet.

And since the common man still has not even heard of the 5th epochal revelation, except for, perhaps, as slandered as the “alien bible”, there is not a lot of visible change in the glacially changing evolutionary landscape.

And really, who are we, the students of the Urantia Book, to be any different than those surrounding us?

Remember the Authors stated that in the beginning, Christianity was dominated by the lowest classes, but over time grew (and became warped to accommodate) the vast majority of Western Civilization.

And this revelation is no different.

We are the spiritual outcasts, the lowest of the low right now (speaking in terms of the established and powerful evolutionary religions of the planet). True, economically, we may not be on the bottom of the ladder, I know I am not, but in terms of the so called “religious world” we’re trash. And, as usual, that is where the brightest and purest lights will shine.

As the revelation grows to encompass the world, it will become weighed down and compromised with the burden of evolutionary baggage. Its words will become twisted, even more than we twist them today, practicing ourselves, individually, our own species ingenious self-deception, based on our life experiences to date. This is the nature of revelation on an evolutionary world, it is expected and I am sure is fully anticipated by those who have watched the spiritual level of this world rise and fall so many times in the past. Watching as wave after wave of spiritual change wash across the planet, each leaving apparent disruption in its wake, then receding and leaving everything pretty much the same as it was, but altered, ever so slightly, for the better.


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So....I'm a little confused. There's a belief set agreed upon by students of the UB? Or even those who have come to believe its claims for itself? I know the Foundation, Fellowship, and Association offer no such list or set - creed or doctrine.

It's my understanding that the UB is the antithesis of those. I thought the Papers teach a personal and unique experience and expression of our life with God? I thought the TA, angels, and Spirit of Truth personalized an actual experience of growing in truth and wisdom? I thought the only measure for one's success in such an experience were the fruits of the Spirit...not any intellectualized assent and agreement to creeds, doctrines, beliefs, behaviors, ceremonies, rites, etc.?

Are you asking if the facts of universe reality presented are dogma, creed, or religion? They're not. Those are given to provide the pilgrims of time with orientation of our place and destiny within the universe reality to relieve confusion and error in perspective. The actual religious experience must be lived....individually and quite uniquely personal...between ourselves and God.

The Papers have much to say on "dogma or dogmas" and creeds and doctrines. Not anything good either.

Another false premise IMO which may only lead to false conclusions and assertions in its defense as a proposition. So, pray tell what are the creeds, doctrines, and dogmas presented in the UB? As Makalu said...if we're living the teachings then nothing becomes crystalized....and if you're not living and growing and bearing fruit, then it hardly matters what your doctrines and creeds might be.

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Is it possible that we all turn the liberty of true religious living into "a species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas?"

Yes. I do it, you do it, the guy that just passed you walking down the street does it, Donald Trump does it, Barrack Obama does it, Adolph Hitler did it, Martin Luther King did it, we all do it.

Disagreements arise when one set of species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas does not jive with another set of species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas.

There is only one fellow who did not ever do it, and they nailed his ass up on a cross two thousand years ago. And that is not something I am looking to have happen to me.


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(102:2.7) You cannot conceive of religion without ideas, but when religion once becomes reduced only to an idea, it is no longer religion; it has become merely a species of human philosophy.

If a species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas has crept into life, resulting in intellectual crystallization of religious concepts, how would you know religion has been reduced only to an idea, being in effect, ingeniously self-deceived?

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(102:2.7) Intellectual crystallization of religious concepts is the equivalent of spiritual death.


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Fruits of the spirit? Peace and happiness?


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nodAmanaV wrote:
If a species of ingenious self-deception through resorting to a retreat to the false shelter of stereotyped religious doctrines and dogmas has crept into life, resulting in intellectual crystallization of religious concepts, how would you know religion has been reduced only to an idea, being in effect, ingeniously self-deceived?


This is thee question Enno.

This is what goes on in forums like this all of the time. It is intellectual philosophizing. It is Urantia Book academics at TUB academy. I am certain that we all have a life outside of this academy.


fanofVan wrote:
Fruits of the spirit? Peace and happiness?


Are these the things that can be shared in the written word? Can anyone share their spirit fruit at the level of the mind? Could Jesus give us His peace in words and parables? He had to leave in order to pour out the Spirit of Truth. His peace He could not leave us written on the subway walls.


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If you've experienced some of the many fruits and gifts of walking with God and growing in faith and drinking the Living water then yes you'd know it by their absence...life isn't hard to tell from death and separation from God is palpable. Otherwise, no i reckon not.

there's nothing wrong with philosophizing...most of the UB is philosophy and the papers consider philosophy to be one of the great pastimes of a civilized world. but it's a balanced philosophy united with true religion and sound science...not just a bunch of analytical theoretical theological godtalk.


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The question of crystallisation only relates the the primary factor of the development of the human soul as it relates to maturity. When I read the Urantia Papers for the first time, it helped my souls develop in that it provided concepts that accomodated my inward experiences. But after your awareness of the seven superuniverse is confirmed, the separate spiritual-gravity and physical-gravity centers within Edentia are distinguished according to your awareness. Then you must become fluent and seek a professional standing within the universe as you know it. And it can occur, that after you have learned what it is that you have needed from the book, then it is no longer useful for you personally.

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to the underlaying unity of all life
so that the voice of intuition may guide us
closer to our common keeper


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Thank you SEla_Kelly. You introduce a very valuable concept. I read that you suggest the internalization of this revelation. Such a silly idea might just work. After all, this concept is emblazoned on nearly every page. Internalize as opposed to intellectualize. Yeah, that's what I'm talking about. A careful read of this more than amazing book reveals the necessity of a three dimensional approach, and that we discover our own value appreciation as we move, each of our own rates, through time. We are to seek length, breath and depth. Without depth of personal spiritual insight all the rest is pure crystal.

Why would any of us choose to be merely docents at the 5th Epochal Museum of Truth when we can be participants in the actual adventure. There are no areas of the museum that are off limits to real children of our father. We don't need docents, the world doesn't need docents and our family of believers worldwide doesn't. This is "the call to the adventure".


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