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:? I have many friends all with differing beliefs from atheists to fundamentalist christians. Most of the atheists I can get along with just fine, but the fundamentalist christians are only nice to me as until they find out that our beliefs differ slightly. I am careful not to just blurt out my beliefs that differ & try to concentrate on our commonalities, but eventually, I am asked direct questions which I answer honestly but with respect for the questioners beliefs. In other words, I try not to offend. Well, I am often bashed, called names & even cursed by these same God loving individuals! Some have even left nasty comments on my AOL profile. I just delete them. When I make a new friend, everything seems to be fine until I am directly asked about my beliefs. As soon as these fundamentalists find out that I do not believe in hell or that Christ had to die such a horrible death for our salvation, or that God never required any blood sacrifices & that such beliefs originated from paganism, I am shunned & talked about behind my back as if I were the devil incarnate! This does hurt my feelings because many of these people I do concider friends & then they treat me badly. I never return the name calling etc as I hope my 'friends' will learn or figure it out by my good example, but that rarely happens. And when I plainly state that I read the Urantia book things get even worse!

:?:What can I do to help my christian friends to understand that I am not very different from them & stop them from being so cruel to me? What can I say when these folks say the Urantia book is demonic etc? I'm asking this because I'm sure many of you, other Urantia book readers, have had similar problems. Any advice? (I live in Maine where there seems there are few Urantia book readers & I have yet to find any Urantia book study groups here)


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Hello Maria,

It is very nice to meet you here and to hopefully have you join this nice little community of Urantia Book reader-believers.

Boy have I been where you are. And it is probably safe to say that all UB believers experience the very same thing amongst their family, friends and associates.

You must never feel guilty or inferiorized due to any lack of understanding or spiritual knowledge-understanding on the part of others. Their poor behavior and lack of cooperation skills is their problem, not yours.

There is no magic formula which can enable persons with even superior knowledge or abilities to force a better way or viewpoint onto others. That might work in the workplace with a superior giving an instruction to a junior worker, or in the military with an officer giving an order to a fellow soldier of a lesser rank, but with personal social interactions, this does not prove to be the case.

So what can you do?

Let your light so shine as to attract others to the goodness that you have and have become. They must ask you about what you are and what you know. They will be sincere in the asking in this instance as they have been attracted by the light you demonstrated to them.

Be as wise as a serpent but as harmless as a dove. If you can ascertain that they are not sincere, don't engage them at all.

There is no need to be of fear that your religious fellows of other beliefs need you to show them a better way. Jesus taught that we should not be concerned over our neighbor's religion. Religion is a matter a personal experience and their experience is theirs and your is yours. God watches over us all and does not need us to be each other's keeper.

I know very well Maria how much you desire to share this extraordinary new knowledge around with others. I have had the UB for 25 years now and I still feel this way and seek every possible opportunity to share it with others, but I find it requires considerable skill and even a touch of brilliance now and then to successfully introduce these new ideas.

The UB most appeals to truth seekers. They are out there so be especially on the lookout for individuals like this. You can tell when someone is searching for answers. But those who are already comfortably confirmed in a belief system, like Christianity,...... they aren't looking for anything else and the thought typically hasn't even occurred to them that there is anything else.

But all is hardly lost here. They are, after all, believers in the one God and should they remain true to their faith, they will be saved. They will be promoted to the next world just as all sincere persons of faith will be.

It is hard to take Maria, but you cannot lot let any ridicule from others get to you. Keep your composure and remain just as steady and poised with your knowledge as they are with theirs.

When discussing particular beliefs, it is many times not necessary to even mention the Urantia Book. It is best to be truthful and answer people's direct questions directly, but do not cast the pearls before swine as it were. Make sure the question askers are sincere in their asking. You have nothing to prove to them. They have nothing to prove to you. You have nothing to prove to me and I have nothing to prove to you. This is going back to religion being wholly a matter of personal experience.

If your fellows trick you with false sincerity and make fun of your beliefs.....well the shame is on them. It is not your fault and they are proving that they aren't even practicing the best in their own beliefs. Some people are just.....jerks. And this is little different than any other social situation. You can only be responsible for your own behavior.

You have very much to be proud of in your finding and accepting the remarkable and superior teachings of the UB. Revealing these sublime truths to others is a very high calling and requires practice and patience. Don't stop trying because you might fall off of the horse a few times. Get up, dust yourself off....and get back on that horse. You will have an angel there to help you and maybe even a midwayer now and then :smile:

I'm sure several others here will have some encouragement for you and probably some better advice than what I have been able to offer. Keep us informed as to how it is going with you and don't hesitate to ask any questions you might have. There's a good number of friendly folks here with a tremendous amount of combined experience among us.

Peace and service,


Vann

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Hi Maria,

Nice to have you here. There doesn't seem to be any fool proof method for dealing with foolish religionists -- fundamentalist Christians in particular, since it seems that one of the main tenets shared by the various branches of Christian fundamentalism is one must believe their dogma the same way they do or it's off to hell -- and that includes all the other fundamentalist who believe slightly differently. To them God is both vindictive and judgmental and it's that belief that has spurred most of your atheist friends to discount religion in general, having thrown the baby out because of the tainted bath water. Perhaps the best you can hope for with such "friends" is to stick with explaining what Jesus means to you personally -- not the religion about Jesus but your personal relationship. If nothing else that will be good practice. You might also want to reserve the designation of friend for someone who can accept you as you are just as you accept them although their beliefs differ from yours.

Best wishes,
Larry


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The certainty of the God-knowing religionist should not be disturbed by the uncertainty of the doubting materialist; rather should the uncertainty of the unbeliever be mightily challenged by the profound faith and unshakable certainty of the experiential believer. p1140:5 103:8.5



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True and genuine inward certainty does not in the least fear outward analysis, nor does truth resent honest criticism. You should never forget that intolerance is the mask covering up the entertainment of secret doubts as to the trueness of one's belief. No man is at any time disturbed by his neighbor's attitude when he has perfect confidence in the truth of that which he wholeheartedly believes. Courage is the confidence of thoroughgoing honesty about those things which one professes to believe. Sincere men are unafraid of the critical examination of their true convictions and noble ideals." 146:3.2
 

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One of the young men who worked with Jesus one day on the steering paddle became much interested in the words which he dropped from hour to hour as they toiled in the shipyard. When Jesus intimated that the Father in heaven was interested in the welfare of his children on earth, this young Greek, Anaxand, said: "If the Gods are interested in me, then why do they not remove the cruel and unjust foreman of this workshop?" He was startled when Jesus replied, "Since you know the ways of kindness and value justice, perhaps the Gods have brought this erring man near that you may lead him into this better way. Maybe you are the salt which is to make this brother more agreeable to all other men; that is, if you have not lost your savor. As it is, this man is your master in that his evil ways unfavorably influence you. Why not assert your mastery of evil by virtue of the power of goodness and thus become the master of all relations between the two of you? I predict that the good in you could overcome the evil in him if you gave it a fair and living chance. There is no adventure in the course of mortal existence more enthralling than to enjoy the exhilaration of becoming the material life partner with spiritual energy and divine truth in one of their triumphant struggles with error and evil. It is a marvelous and transforming experience to become the living channel of spiritual light to the mortal who sits in spiritual darkness. If you are more blessed with truth than is this man, his need should challenge you. Surely you are not the coward who could stand by on the seashore and watch a fellow man who could not swim perish! How much more of value is this man's soul floundering in darkness compared to his body drowning in water!" p1430:2 130:2.4


Last edited by Bonita on Sat Mar 21, 2009 7:58 am +0000, edited 1 time in total.

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Hi Maria, I can relate to you and your Christian friends. I enthusiastically started telling my friends at church about my newfound beliefs and was promptly labelled "demonic". ouch, really hurt.

I guess I was a little naive to think they would receive everything I said. I have since acquired alot more caution in what I say, careful not to divulge too much factual knowledge. I still love my Christian friends and can only forgive their hostility in the hopes I can open them up in the future. :smile:


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Maria and Rich, again welcome to you Both. God's blessings be with you.
:smile:
Your right about the reaction you get when you mention Urantia. After some years I figured it out. Don't mention the Book just the truth contained within it. I've seen many Urantia readers have success like that in the many denominations they belong to. Give them the truth as Jesus gae it to us to be share freely and without resevation to all. The truth is teh truth regardless of where it comes from. It all comes from God. Here's a little excerpt from paper 141:7.3-6

P.1593 - §4 Jesus endeavored to make clear that he desired his disciples, having tasted of the good spirit realities of the kingdom, so to live in the world that men, by seeing their lives, would become kingdom conscious and hence be led to inquire of believers concerning the ways of the kingdom. All such sincere seekers for the truth are always glad to hear the glad tidings of the faith gift which insures admission to the kingdom with its eternal and divine spirit realities.

P.1593 - §5 The Master sought to impress upon all teachers of the gospel of the kingdom that their only business was to reveal God to the individual man [human] as his Father--to lead this individual man to become son-conscious; then to present this same man to God as his faith son. Both of these essential revelations are accomplished in Jesus. He became, indeed, "the way, the truth, and the life." The religion of Jesus was wholly based on the living of his bestowal life on earth. When Jesus departed from this world, he left behind no books, laws, or other forms of human organization affecting the religious life of the individual.

P.1593 - §6 Jesus made it plain that he had come to establish personal and eternal relations with men [humankind] which should forever take precedence over all other human relationships. And he emphasized that this intimate spiritual fellowship was to be extended to all men of all ages and of all social conditions among all peoples. The only reward which he held out for his children was: in this world--spiritual joy and divine communion; in the next world--eternal life in the progress of the divine spirit realities of the Paradise Father.

P.1593 - §7 Jesus laid great emphasis upon what he called the two truths of first import in the teachings of the kingdom, and they are: the attainment of salvation by faith, and faith alone, associated with the revolutionary teaching of the attainment of human liberty through the sincere recognition of truth, "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Jesus was the truth made manifest in the flesh, and he promised to send his Spirit of Truth into the hearts of all his children after his return to the Father in heaven.

May God's Peace and Love be always with you. :o

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yeah, you know I can't fault my sisters and brothers at church who don't know what I have so recently learned. After all a couple months ago I had never heard of the Urantia Book either!

The other thing is that church and fellowship are really great. Community is important, no matter what you are involved in. If you reduce your social circle to only those who believe what you believe, you will probably have a very small group of friends (maybe just yourself).


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Good point Rich Rev --
Nowhere are we encouraged to disconnect from our friends and associates because we don't believe alike.

God loves each of his creatures alike; he is no respecter of persons.

You do not have to see alike or feel alike or even think alike in order spiritually to be alike. Spiritual unity is derived from the consciousness that each of you is indwelt, and increasingly dominated, by the spirit gift of the heavenly Father. Your apostolic harmony must grow out of the fact that the spirit hope of each of you is identical in origin, nature, and destiny. (141:5.1)

You, perhaps more than they, can recognize the spiritual brotherhood that connects us all. They may cling to religious forms for their belief, you can see beyond the dogma to the spiritual connection behind that.

Larry


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lwatkins wrote:
Good point Rich Rev --
Nowhere are we encouraged to disconnect from our friends and associates because we don't believe alike.

God loves each of his creatures alike; he is no respecter of persons.

You do not have to see alike or feel alike or even think alike in order spiritually to be alike. Spiritual unity is derived from the consciousness that each of you is indwelt, and increasingly dominated, by the spirit gift of the heavenly Father. Your apostolic harmony must grow out of the fact that the spirit hope of each of you is identical in origin, nature, and destiny. (141:5.1)

You, perhaps more than they, can recognize the spiritual brotherhood that connects us all. They may cling to religious forms for their belief, you can see beyond the dogma to the spiritual connection behind that.

Larry


Exactly Rich and Larry, Iris, Vann and Maria. that's it. God loves us ALL. And that is sweet!

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Maria wrote:
What can I do to help my christian friends to understand that I am not very different from them & stop them from being so cruel to me? What can I say when these folks say the Urantia book is demonic etc? I'm asking this because I'm sure many of you, other Urantia book readers, have had similar problems. Any advice? (I live in Maine where there seems there are few Urantia book readers & I have yet to find any Urantia book study groups here)


Hi Maria,

I'm in the same boat with you and all I can offer is sympathy and understanding. It's going to take patience and time for both of us, and I think we just have to hang in there until someone receptive comes along with whom we can enjoy spiritual fellowship.

I've always been circumspect about who I share the book with, and I know better than just trot it out around here, in rural Alabama, where there are ten Baptist churches per square mile.

Most folks in these parts consider themselves to be devout Christians, but strange to say they confine religion to one day a week, and that consisting of stock forms and rituals.

They are not even willing to talk about religion beyond that!

For my own part I think we must LIVE our faith every day, and that will attract others to it. No amount of proselytizing or preaching will work as well as that.

As for those who talk behind your back and tell you that the UB is demonic, satanic, whatever, they are just using what they've got. They have not even read what they are condemning. There's a word for this.

Once people have started that up with me I just let them go their way with a smile, considering that the UB has sorted people out for me once again. Their cup is full and there's really nothing more you can tell them.

Eventually you will have the happy experience of meeting someone receptive that you can share all this wonderful truth with. Just hang in there.

a.


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Fundamentalists are rough. I talked about Urantia to a Christian on youtube, and not long after, another Christian arrived, and she tried to do an exorcism of me through the internet. She said for Jesus to cast out the demons inside of me, and that they should come out in Jesus name.

She pretty much................... :roll:

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Hi Maria...
Yes it is painfull dealing with those bros. and sisters of our religious past.
We must have been special in our seeking of spiritual growth for to have been picked by our TA to gravitate to TUB but thats just my openion.
I find my old friends to be bound up by docturn and western interpretion
of the Bible.Many of them quite knowledgible in their memorization of
'chapter/verse' but yet dead in the spirit of the Word.
Though most will move on to be with us, in later eons, unfortionatly in this life they are blocked.
What is our job in this life we lead?
Well in our personal growth toward the Fathers desires and to serve our fellows....ah there in lies the 'scratch'.
Always ever ready to reach down to lift up all that would 'grab hold'
and ever being open to the leading of our celestial hoasts.
If those we would love foremost to share with will not listen, 'invite the commoners to the Feast'.

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Where lies the land to which the ship would go?
Far,far ahead,is all her seamen know.
And where lies the land she travels from?Away.
Far,far behind,is all that they can say.
AHClough


Last edited by 4evr on Tue Apr 21, 2009 11:02 am +0000, edited 1 time in total.

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Maria

It is very difficult to have those you love and care for treat you in any other way than with love after they discover you don't believe as they do...(unfortunately it also happens in the "Urantia Book" arena of fundamentalist as well...)

But to answer your question, I would say "What did Jesus do when those He cared for "despitefully used Him", called Him "the devil", spat in His face, said all manner of things about Him?

The obvious answer would be to say "He loved them anyway."... The not so obvious answer is that He continued to pray for them, forgive them, live in such a way as to draw them...

Even if someone doesn't believe like you do does not mean they don't have that same "craving" to know God... it just may be in a different degree than yours... or it may require them to continue on in the religion of the mind, where they need that symbolism (even if the symbolism is somewhat amiss of "truth"), or they may need to believe what they believe until the groundwork in their hearts is made ready to receive higher truths such as found in the Urantia Papers.

They, too, have a Thought Adjuster and the Spirit of Truth and the Holy Spirit abiding in and with them to lead them into all truth... never be afraid to speak the truth, but do be careful and not to cast your pearls before those who are not spiritually ready for such treats.

I have made that mistake many times and have wished I had waited...

Things like the atonement and the "blood of the lamb", that God could not look upon Jesus because he "became sin", that Jesus felt "forsaken" on the cross... all those things which Christians hold in reverent and untouchable belief, those are the things that are the hardest to not only refute to fundamentalist Christians, it is also difficult to get past if you have been a Christian for 40 years and believed all of that and more...

It takes the Spirit of Truth and a readiness, a receptibility on the part of the person in order to facilitate a change in these hard, hard doctrines and to finally see God as a God of love rather than a God of wrath as so many people see Him...

The seed of Truth is the Spirit's responsibility, as well as the preparation of the ground it falls on... so even if "they" come back at you with all manner of name calling, etc., speak the truth and ask the Spirit to reveal the truth to them and love them.

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132:0.4 And this was his method of instruction: Never once did he attack their errors or even mention the flaws in their teachings. In each case he would select the truth in what they taught and then proceed so to embellish and illuminate this truth in their minds that in a very short time this enhancement of the truth effectively crowded out the associated error;

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...permit the word of truth to strike down into the heart with living roots 177:5.2


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Detachment is the key.

You can love somebody with a transcendant love if you aren't in their hair and they aren't in your face. Just back off. If they really love you, they will manifest their affections in ways that are compatible. It does't mean you will see eye to eye, but you will be able to get along in the face of serious differences.

By your fruits ye shall be known.

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i remember a maria from early on in my ubron days, could this be you? you sound similar to her. i get along great with fundamentalist christians, i just don't say more than they can understand. 141:6.2 When Simon Zelotes and Jesus were alone, Simon asked the Master: “Why is it that I could not persuade him? Why did he so resist me and so readily lend an ear to you?” Jesus answered: “Simon, Simon, how many times have I instructed you to refrain from all efforts to take something out of the hearts of those who seek salvation? How often have I told you to labor only to put something into these hungry souls?"

it was a virtual guarantee that jesus was going to die on this sphere the way he did, the christians aren't that wrong about that. 122:4.1 In this dream a brilliant celestial messenger appeared to him and, among other things, said: “...but they will hardly receive him..." he can also be called the savior of people as he did arrest lucifer and decrease caligastia's power.

Maria wrote:
:? I have many friends all with differing beliefs from atheists to fundamentalist christians. Most of the atheists I can get along with just fine, but the fundamentalist christians are only nice to me as until they find out that our beliefs differ slightly. I am careful not to just blurt out my beliefs that differ & try to concentrate on our commonalities, but eventually, I am asked direct questions which I answer honestly but with respect for the questioners beliefs. In other words, I try not to offend. Well, I am often bashed, called names & even cursed by these same God loving individuals! Some have even left nasty comments on my AOL profile. I just delete them. When I make a new friend, everything seems to be fine until I am directly asked about my beliefs. As soon as these fundamentalists find out that I do not believe in hell or that Christ had to die such a horrible death for our salvation, or that God never required any blood sacrifices & that such beliefs originated from paganism, I am shunned & talked about behind my back as if I were the devil incarnate! This does hurt my feelings because many of these people I do concider friends & then they treat me badly. I never return the name calling etc as I hope my 'friends' will learn or figure it out by my good example, but that rarely happens. And when I plainly state that I read the Urantia book things get even worse!

:?:What can I do to help my christian friends to understand that I am not very different from them & stop them from being so cruel to me? What can I say when these folks say the Urantia book is demonic etc? I'm asking this because I'm sure many of you, other Urantia book readers, have had similar problems. Any advice? (I live in Maine where there seems there are few Urantia book readers & I have yet to find any Urantia book study groups here)


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