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Joined: Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:57 pm +0000
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Since I finished reading the UB in April, with all the coronavirus restrictions imposed on me, I fell into a depression and an existential crisis.

Before reading the UB, I must admit I was leaning toward atheism in my beliefs. When I read the UB, I started thinking there may be a God, but I was not 100% sure.

In mid to late May, the coronavirus had my father trapped in England for since mid March. He couldn't fly home to Indonesia and he had health scares and his only friend in the world while waiting in England for an available flight was a dog. He had health scares there all the while still fighting a bitter legal divorce battle with my mother. Legally, unless they make a settlement, my inheritance is at risk of being seized by the government.

This along with turning 35 in January suddenly made me feel I have so little time left. I felt my life is over thanks to the coronavirus. I then started to fear death. Eternal sleep. Then when I thought of how small I am in the universe and the concept of infinity, I felt my body getting heavy and I felt very dizzy. Thoughts of nothing in this universe lasting forever made me feel that nothing means anything and began to lose my will to live.

I have to add that before the coronavirus I was distant from my wife and planned on leaving her when I could do so at an economically convenient time. She has wronged me in many ways in the past. But because I was so sad and overwhelmed with anxiety, out of desperation I forgave her so I could have a shoulder to cry on. She has been a great source of encouragement and strength during these difficult times for me. She and I pray together. Although her traditional Christian prayers are not always agreeable with me.

My brother told me of his belief in a vague concept of God as a universal will. This made more sense to me than the personality deity of the Bible. I pray using traditional Christian language like lord and Jesus, although that's just because that's the only way I know how to pray. I know that the UB teaches that spirituality is a personal experience. So right now I'm trying to gain that personal experience. Although doubts still haunt me.

When I descended into depression, all my love for many things I used to enjoy like books, movies, politics and writing slipped away. I've picked up one new hobby: bird watching. All that time spent at home made me observe the birds in my garden. It brings relief from the sadness and anxiety but it does not completely cure my feelings of emptiness of meaning. The only reason I am not suicidal is because I love my children and it would be selfish to take my own life.

When my father finally got a flight home, I was so relieved to pour out all that I have been going through while he was away. He then suggested numerous activities to do together and gradually my will to live started to return. But since I began recover, my wife seems to be growing distant from me again. I tell her my concern but she tells me she is just busy.

Anyway, I am thankful to be surrounded by people who love and support me. But I do wish I could find more encouragement to gain a spiritual experience and find true inner peace. I hope my morning meditations and prayers will eventually help me in the long term and not just give temporary relief.

Anyway, I hope I am in your thoughts if you read this.


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Joined: Sat Dec 30, 2006 9:13 am +0000
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Location: Denver CO
Dear William...thank you so much for sharing your situation with us. It's good to know that (it seems, anyway) the worst may be over for you, and that you are on your way to establishing a more even keel in your inner life. And that inner life is key to finding that relationship/experience with God. Sharing that inner life with God is key, and may be easier than you think.

I was just talking about this with my partner yesterday, and I was recalling the advice we get from the book about the alter-ego and how that can be an avenue of connection with God - a pretty easy one, at that. In fact it seems almost childish...but then again, we are called to become more like the child in our relations with God - not child-ish, but child-like.

[url]https://truthbook.com/urantia-book/paper-91-the-evolution-of-prayer#U91_3_1[url]

I offer it as a suggestion to you, one you may want to try, as you - if your're anything like me - probably do this kind of inner dialogue anyway.

I love it that you have become a bird-watcher. I am one, too, and I think observing the birds and coming to know them can also be an avenue of gaining more insight into God and his workings. We were blessed with a family of finches this year, and it was a source of neverending daily delight to watch the little family take up residence on our porch and then to see the process of feeding and care and activitiy until finally the babies fledged.

Watching the birds can be a perfect time to converse with God in the inner life - the alter ego. When he is so good to the birds, it's so comforting to know how much more he cares for us! We know that God indwells our mind, so consciously dedicating its workings to God can be very helpful and fruitful.

I love this part of that section I cited for you:

Quote:
91:3.7 Enlightened prayer must recognize not only an external and personal God but also an internal and impersonal Divinity, the indwelling Adjuster. It is altogether fitting that man, when he prays, should strive to grasp the concept of the Universal Father on Paradise; but the more effective technique for most practical purposes will be to revert to the concept of a near-by alter ego, just as the primitive mind was wont to do, and then to recognize that the idea of this alter ego has evolved from a mere fiction to the truth of God's indwelling mortal man in the factual presence of the Adjuster so that man can talk face to face, as it were, with a real and genuine and divine alter ego that indwells him and is the very presence and essence of the living God, the Universal Father.


Thanks again, William. I pray that the stress in your life will ease even further and that you experience a fuller realization of God according to your most sincere desire.

MaryJo


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Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:29 am +0000
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Greetings William and best wishes. Great counsel and support from Maryjo.

The more stress and pressure I suffer from, the more I pray and seek the Presence within. Give thanks and count blessings.

Also, like the Master, seek time in nature. Sunrise is my favorite time...the awakening of dawn's light. Great birding time too.

Take time to be a dad! What an opportunity for healing and blessing! Such time is gone too soon.

Gardening and physical exhaustion by hiking, etc. is good too.

Sounds like you have much to embrace and hold close.

I'm sure you'll find your way.

Bradly. 8)


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