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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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Welcome Alex!

To know God...and to share God...yes indeed! 8)


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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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Well said, Alex. I completely agree! And welcome. Thanks for joining the discussion.


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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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Hi MaryJo, I have never posted before but here goes... your big question is THE question! The question that opens the door to our eternal path, and I am sure we have all asked and been answered, which is why we are here in this forum. I am glad to hear that Larry graduated, good for him! He offered me a willing ear once when I really needed it and I am glad to see you are willing to take his place here in the forum.
Returning to your question: One of my biggest questions while I was a "Christian" (now Jesusonian) was "Why would God "punish" others and not punish me for my mistakes and failures? The Jesus I knew personally was so far removed from the fundamentalist/evangelical portrayal and that difference is what led me to question many things in mainstream Christianity, and prepared me for that first moment when I opened the Urantia Book and knew that the words I was reading carried an authority superior to anything I had experienced before. And experience is the key word to the meaning of life. The experiential connection with Jesus is what gives our lives meaning and whets our hunger to learn more about him and our role in this time we spend here on Urantia, and that connection will carry us on forever. I am here to learn and not to teach so I won't rattle on. I haven't posted before because I was still coming out of the cocoon of my Christian training and years of Bible study, but now I believe I have sifted most of the wheat from the chaff of my previous existence and am ready to participate if I believe I may constructively contribute to a discussion.
While reading the forum in the past I haven't understood the need for some of the barbed or sarcastic comments traded between members of the forum, sometimes even condescending. One thing that was drummed into me while a missionary was "pray before you say" i.e. does it edify others or is it merely an excuse to show your spirituality and knowledge and win an argument. The wiser folks in this forum never take a superior tone, except in one instance where some guy named Caligastia was trying to disrupt things and Larry used his authority in a very firm manner but not all in a self-righteous way, and that was a tremendous example of patience and humility that is only found in those who are confident in their calling and have found the meaning in their life. That is the example that Jesus gave and the example that we all hope to follow in our lives, in spite of our human weaknesses. A big hug to all from Brazil!


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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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Dear pethuel,

First off, thanks so much for being willing to post - so happy to know that you want to participate! And I was happy to read your post. It is precisely seekers like you that we at TruthBook hope to embrace and with whom we hope to share the matchless teachings of The Urantia Book. Your testimony is inspiring, and I thank you for sharing it.

I was also interested in your assessments of some of the past threads and comments here. It reminds me of a sermon I heard just yesterday in a decidedly Christian church that I was invited to attend with a dear friend. I preface this by saying that I am not a church-goer, except on rare occasions. I was raised as a strict Catholic but once I found The Urantia Book, I pretty much discarded church attendance in favor of that personal experience with God that I was discovering, and that I continue to enjoy. Like you, it is this reality that shapes my understanding of life's meaning.

Nevertheless, there are some churches in which the Spirit seems to be moving, churches in which community and connection among the congregants is strong, churches in which the love of God and for God seems to be slowly modifying the idea of blood atonement and sacrifice - not completely, but I see reason for optimism. And so, this invite to attend such a church yesterday proved a happy one. It was a huge church and an inspiring service.

In this sermon, the preacher - a young, 30-something guy, very dynamic - was talking about how believers might want to talk to those they wish to inspire. This preacher understands that the way believers speak to others is a chance to either draw them to - or away from - Jesus. He said that anytime we speak to another we must start by adding "value before input." It reminded me of the "Instructions for Teachers and Believers," https://truthbook.com/urantia-book/paper-159-the-decapolis-tour#U159_3_1 in which Jesus' very first admonition is "Always respect the personality of man." Your "pray before you say" is a fine echo of that sentiment. Even though the participants in an online forum such as this are relatively anonymous, behind every screen name is a personality beloved by God.

And yes, Larry Watkins was a great and gifted man...very sorely missed here.

If I may, I'd like to add a thank you to all of the others who have contributed to this thread, too, and an encouragement to others who may be considering that. Yes, it is a big subject, but one of the top concerns that people have, and all of us more or less struggle with that meaning in our daily lives. So, thanks to you, and to all who have taken the time to share about that so far.

MaryJo


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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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from the Masters 'discourse on reality"

Quote:
P1434:6, 130:4.7 Life is an adaptation of the original cosmic causation to the demands and possibilities of universe situations, and it comes into being by the action of the Universal Mind and the activation of the spirit spark of the God who is spirit. The meaning of life is its adaptability; the value of life is its progressability -- even to the heights of God-consciousness.


to me it always just meant to "grow" albeit the meaning and value of "growth" has changed over time


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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:45 pm +0000
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1. What is the Meaning of Life?
2. Who am I?



First of all, I'm sorry to hear that Larry has left us. That man had Wisdom. There were so many posts he wrote that I was impressed with and inspired by, I couldn't count them. I will miss him.



Question 1.
I have this idea about the Meaning of Life. In our world, as it is these days, I see a sad trend where it is fashionable for intellectuals to declare that we as humans on this planet would be better off not ascribing to life--any "Meaning Of Life" whatsoever. Furthermore, that meaning itself is a man made phenomenon that keeps mankind from evolving. Unfortunately as science progresses and picks up more power from the population, it promotes this idea. It removes "The Meaning of Life" from our lives, as it attempts to discard it as a thing parasitic to the human condition.

Maybe I watch too much "Big Think" on Youtube. Or maybe I'm exaggerating the issue but, I see it as science (atheistic materialistic scientific thought) doing whatever it takes to overthrow, what it views as, the stupidity of Religion in general.



With that said, I propose that the Meaning of Life only becomes clear to us after we begin the search for Meaning (in Life). In addition, after we have given this search a few decades of experience, then do we start to see the Value of that search. I would also be willing to claim that a great many of us who have been searching for a while come to much of the same conclusions that; We come to realize that the Meaning of Life is contained within that Value that we place (through trial and error--and not a little pain and suffering) upon our fellow humans.

The meaning of life is to value one another. The more Meaning we discover, the higher Value we place upon our fellows.

I believe that it is very difficult, perhaps impossible for us to Choose to do the Will of God, to WANT to do Gods will above our own will, without learning something of the Value God has placed on his children--our brothers and sisters (the brotherhood of mankind). This claim I make makes the Meaning of Life crucial for the survival of the soul.

THE Meaning of Life is Everything!
It gives us the tool that generates within us an increasing Value placed upon one another and that value yields the fruit required to make the choice to want Gods will above our own.




Question 2.
Who I am first and foremost is A Child of God.
I am an Evolving Being in search of my Creator.
In that search I find my self and that self changes as I grow.
In that search I am Husband, Father, Teacher and Student all in one.
In that search I discover it cannot be done alone, I need my fellows.
Some of them will betray me.
Some of them will use me.
Some of them will comfort me and protect me.
Some of them will devote themselves to me.
Some of them will desert me.
Some of them will strengthen me.
All of them will teach me what Love is.
All of them will teach me the meaning of life.
All of them will be invaluable to me.



That's my story and I'm stickin to it.... That's all Folks !!

Thanks for the thread MaryJo :)

Paul


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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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Thanks, Paul...nice post, and with an important element of the meaning of life - relationship!

The gospel of the kingdom - the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man - implies this all-important element: relationship with God and relationship with our fellows. One of the mandates of spiritual growth is the exhibition of the fruits of the spirit, and these fruits can only be grown in relationship to others. Consider:

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And the fruits of the divine spirit which are yielded in the lives of spirit-born and God-knowing mortals are: loving service, unselfish devotion, courageous loyalty, sincere fairness, enlightened honesty, undying hope, confiding trust, merciful ministry, unfailing goodness, forgiving tolerance, and enduring peace.

https://truthbook.com/urantia-book/paper-193-final-appearances-and-ascension#U193_2_2

With the possible exception of undying hope and enduring peace all of these imply relationship with others and even the excepted ones imply relationship with God. It's something we all do, this relationship with others, but it's good to highlight its importance as you have done.

MaryJo


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 Post subject: Re: Big questions
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maryjo606 wrote:
Thanks, Paul...nice post, and with an important element of the meaning of life - relationship!

The gospel of the kingdom - the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man - implies this all-important element: relationship with God and relationship with our fellows. One of the mandates of spiritual growth is the exhibition of the fruits of the spirit, and these fruits can only be grown in relationship to others. Consider:

Quote:
And the fruits of the divine spirit which are yielded in the lives of spirit-born and God-knowing mortals are: loving service, unselfish devotion, courageous loyalty, sincere fairness, enlightened honesty, undying hope, confiding trust, merciful ministry, unfailing goodness, forgiving tolerance, and enduring peace.

https://truthbook.com/urantia-book/paper-193-final-appearances-and-ascension#U193_2_2

With the possible exception of undying hope and enduring peace all of these imply relationship with others and even the excepted ones imply relationship with God. It's something we all do, this relationship with others, but it's good to highlight its importance as you have done.

MaryJo


I think the UB teaches us that undying hope and eduring peace also imply and are a result of "relationship with God". I believe we are taught that all experiences AND expressions of love, truth, beauty, goodness, hope, trust, and assurance come by the relationship between God and personality....especially so between Adjuster and mortal.

101:0.3
Religion, the conviction-faith of the personality, can always triumph over the superficially contradictory logic of despair born in the unbelieving material mind. There really is a true and genuine inner voice, that "true light which lights every man who comes into the world." And this spirit leading is distinct from the ethical prompting of human conscience. The feeling of religious assurance is more than an emotional feeling. The assurance of religion transcends the reason of the mind, even the logic of philosophy. Religion is faith, trust, and assurance.

101:1.6
Faith unites moral insight with conscientious discriminations of values, and the pre-existent evolutionary sense of duty completes the ancestry of true religion. The experience of religion eventually results in the certain consciousness of God and in the undoubted assurance of the survival of the believing personality.

101:2.4 (1106.3) There are two basic reasons for believing in a God who fosters human survival:

101:2.5 (1106.4) 1. Human experience, personal assurance, the somehow registered hope and trust initiated by the
indwelling Thought Adjuster.

101:2.6 (1106.5) 2. The revelation of truth, whether by direct personal ministry of the Spirit of Truth, by the world bestowal of divine Sons, or through the revelations of the written word.

101:2.14
Your deepest nature — the divine Adjuster — creates within you a hunger and thirst for righteousness, a certain craving for divine perfection. Religion is the faith act of the recognition of this inner urge to divine attainment; and thus is brought about that soul trust and assurance of which you become conscious as the way of salvation, the technique of the survival of personality and all those values which you have come to look upon as being true and good.

8)


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