"You who would be the undershepherds of my Father's flocks must not only be worthy leaders, but you must also feed the flock with good food; you are not true shepherds unless you lead your flocks into green pastures and beside still waters. ~ The Urantia Book, 165:2.6
Effective and wise leadership. In civilization much, very much, depends on an enthusiastic and effective load-pulling spirit. Ten men are of little more value than one in lifting a great load unless they lift together—all at the same moment. And such teamwork—social co-operation—is dependent on leadership. The cultural civilizations of the past and the present have been based upon the intelligent co-operation of the citizenry with wise and progressive leaders; and until man evolves to higher levels, civilization will continue to be dependent on wise and vigorous leadership. ~ The Urantia Book, 81:6.37
Leadership is vital to progress. Wisdom, insight, and foresight are indispensable to the endurance of nations. Civilization is never really jeopardized until able leadership begins to vanish. And the quantity of such wise leadership has never exceeded one per cent of the population. ~ The Urantia Book, 81:6.42
Forceful ambition, intelligent judgment, and seasoned wisdom are the essentials of material success. Leadership is dependent on natural ability, discretion, will power, and determination. Spiritual destiny is dependent on faith, love, and devotion to truth—hunger and thirst for righteousness—the wholehearted desire to find God and to be like him. ~ The Urantia Book, 156:5.7
Leadership in Government, Industry and Business
And now is industry supplementing agriculture, with consequently increased urbanization and multiplication of nonagricultural groups of citizenship classes. But an industrial era cannot hope to survive if its leaders fail to recognize that even the highest social developments must ever rest upon a sound agricultural basis. ~ The Urantia Book, 68:5.13
Mankind’s struggle to perfect government on Urantia has to do with perfecting channels of administration, with adapting them to ever-changing current needs, with improving power distribution within government, and then with selecting such administrative leaders as are truly wise. While there is a divine and ideal form of government, such cannot be revealed but must be slowly and laboriously discovered by the men and women of each planet throughout the universes of time and space. ~ The Urantia Book, 70:12.20
The political or administrative form of a government is of little consequence provided it affords the essentials of civil progress—liberty, security, education, and social co-ordination. It is not what a state is but what it does that determines the course of social evolution. And after all, no state can transcend the moral values of its citizenry as exemplified in their chosen leaders. Ignorance and selfishness will insure the downfall of even the highest type of government. ~ The Urantia Book, 71:3.1
Teachers as Leaders
Education recently passed from the control of the clergy to that of lawyers and businessmen. Eventually it must be given over to the philosophers and the scientists. Teachers must be free beings, real leaders, to the end that philosophy, the search for wisdom, may become the chief educational pursuit. ~ The Urantia Book, 71:7.4
Modern Religious Leaders Needed
Religion does need new leaders, spiritual men and women who will dare to depend solely on Jesus and his incomparable teachings. If Christianity persists in neglecting its spiritual mission while it continues to busy itself with social and material problems, the spiritual renaissance must await the coming of these new teachers of Jesus’ religion who will be exclusively devoted to the spiritual regeneration of men. And then will these spirit-born souls quickly supply the leadership and inspiration requisite for the social, moral, economic, and political reorganization of the world. ~ The Urantia Book, 195:9.4
But religious leaders are making a great mistake when they try to call modern man to spiritual battle with the trumpet blasts of the Middle Ages. Religion must provide itself with new and up-to-date slogans. Neither democracy nor any other political panacea will take the place of spiritual progress. False religions may represent an evasion of reality, but Jesus in his gospel introduced mortal man to the very entrance upon an eternal reality of spiritual progression. ~ The Urantia Book, 195:6.10
Humans Naturally Crave Leadership
Most great religious epochs have been inaugurated by the life and teachings of some outstanding personality; leadership has originated a majority of the worth-while moral movements of history. And men have always tended to venerate the leader, even at the expense of his teachings; to revere his personality, even though losing sight of the truths which he proclaimed. And this is not without reason; there is an instinctive longing in the heart of evolutionary man for help from above and beyond. This craving is designed to anticipate the appearance on earth of the Planetary Prince and the later Material Sons. On Urantia man has been deprived of these superhuman leaders and rulers, and therefore does he constantly seek to make good this loss by enshrouding his human leaders with legends pertaining to supernatural origins and miraculous careers. ~ The Urantia Book, 92:5.5
Religion and Leadership
While religion is exclusively a personal spiritual experience—knowing God as a Father—the corollary of this experience—knowing man as a brother—entails the adjustment of the self to other selves, and that involves the social or group aspect of religious life. Religion is first an inner or personal adjustment, and then it becomes a matter of social service or group adjustment. The fact of man’s gregariousness perforce determines that religious groups will come into existence. What happens to these religious groups depends very much on intelligent leadership. In primitive society the religious group is not always very different from economic or political groups. Religion has always been a conservator of morals and a stabilizer of society. And this is still true, notwithstanding the contrary teaching of many modern socialists and humanists. ~ The Urantia Book, 99:5.1
What a mistake for Christians to make when, in presenting Christ as the supreme ideal of spiritual leadership, they dare to require God-conscious men and women to reject the historic leadership of the God-knowing men who have contributed to their particular national or racial illumination during past ages. ~ The Urantia Book, 99:5.11
A Great Female Leader During the Lucifer Rebellion
The Lucifer rebellion was system wide. Thirty-seven seceding Planetary Princes swung their world administrations largely to the side of the archrebel. Only on Panoptia did the Planetary Prince fail to carry his people with him. On this world, under the guidance of the Melchizedeks, the people rallied to the support of Michael. Ellanora, a young woman of that mortal realm, grasped the leadership of the human races, and not a single soul on that strife-torn world enlisted under the Lucifer banner. And ever since have these loyal Panoptians served on the seventh Jerusem transition world as the caretakers and builders on the Father’s sphere and its surrounding seven detention worlds. The Panoptians not only act as the literal custodians of these worlds, but they also execute the personal orders of Michael for the embellishment of these spheres for some future and unknown use. They do this work as they tarry en route to Edentia. ~ The Urantia Book, 53:7.1
The Voice of Mercy. Mercy is the keynote of seraphic service and angelic ministry. It is therefore fitting that there should be a corps of angels who, in a special manner, portray mercy. These seraphim are the real mercy ministers of the local universes. They are the inspired leaders who foster the higher impulses and holier emotions of men and angels. The directors of these legions are now always completion seraphim who are also graduate guardians of mortal destiny; that is, each angelic pair has guided at least one soul of animal origin during the life in the flesh and has subsequently traversed the circles of Seraphington and has been mustered into the Seraphic Corps of Completion. ~ The Urantia Book, 39:2.5
The Souls of Peace. The early millenniums of the upward strivings of evolutionary men are marked by many a struggle. Peace is not the natural state of the material realms. The worlds first realize “peace on earth and good will among men” through the ministry of the seraphic souls of peace. Although these angels were largely thwarted in their early efforts on Urantia, Vevona, chief of the souls of peace in Adam’s day, was left on Urantia and is now attached to the staff of the resident governor general. And it was this same Vevona who, when Michael was born, heralded to the worlds, as the leader of the angelic host, “Glory to God in Havona and on earth peace and good will among men.” ~ The Urantia Book, 39:5.5
Some Other Great Leaders
Onagar was born 983,323 years ago (from A.D. 1934), and he lived to be sixty-nine years of age. The record of the achievements of this master mind and spiritual leader of the pre-Planetary Prince days is a thrilling recital of the organization of these primitive peoples into a real society. He instituted an efficient tribal government, the like of which was not attained by succeeding generations in many millenniums. Never again, until the arrival of the Planetary Prince, was there such a high spiritual civilization on earth. These simple people had a real though primitive religion, but it was subsequently lost to their deteriorating descendants. ~ The Urantia Book, 63:6.8
Because of this great retrogression the red men seemed doomed when, about sixty-five thousand years ago, Onamonalonton appeared as their leader and spiritual deliverer. He brought temporary peace among the American red men and revived their worship of the “Great Spirit.” Onamonalonton lived to be ninety-six years of age and maintained his headquarters among the great redwood trees of California. Many of his later descendants have come down to modern times among the Blackfoot Indians
As time passed, the teachings of Onamonalonton became hazy traditions. Internecine wars were resumed, and never after the days of this great teacher did another leader succeed in bringing universal peace among them. Increasingly the more intelligent strains perished in these tribal struggles; otherwise a great civilization would have been built upon the North American continent by these able and intelligent red men. ~ The Urantia Book, 64:6.7
And so Cain departed for the land of Nod, east of the second Eden. He became a great leader among one group of his father’s people and did, to a certain degree, fulfill the predictions of Serapatatia, for he did promote peace between this division of the Nodites and the Adamites throughout his lifetime. Cain married Remona, his distant cousin, and their first son, Enoch, became the head of the Elamite Nodites. And for hundreds of years the Elamites and the Adamites continued to be at peace. ~ The Urantia Book, 76:2.9
The civil rulers of the Adamites were derived hereditarily from the sons of the first garden. Adam’s first son, Adamson (Adam ben Adam), founded a secondary center of the violet race to the north of the second Eden. Adam’s second son, Eveson, became a masterly leader and administrator; he was the great helper of his father. Eveson lived not quite so long as Adam, and his eldest son, Jansad, became the successor of Adam as the head of the Adamite tribes. ~ The Urantia Book, 76:3.3
From time to time all of these different peoples experienced cultural and spiritual revivals. Mansant was a great teacher of the post-Planetary Prince days. But mention is made only of those outstanding leaders and teachers who markedly influenced and inspired a whole race. With the passing of time, many lesser teachers arose in different regions; and in the aggregate they contributed much to the sum total of those saving influences which prevented the total collapse of cultural civilization, especially during the long and dark ages between the Caligastia rebellion and the arrival of Adam. ~ The Urantia Book, 64:6.29
But Abraham was not long to be deterred in his mission as the successor of Melchizedek. Soon he made converts among the Philistines and of Abimelech’s people, made a treaty with them, and, in turn, became contaminated with many of their superstitions, particularly with their practice of sacrificing first-born sons. Thus did Abraham again become a great leader in Palestine. He was held in reverence by all groups and honored by all kings. He was the spiritual leader of all the surrounding tribes, and his influence continued for some time after his death. During the closing years of his life he once more returned to Hebron, the scene of his earlier activities and the place where he had worked in association with Melchizedek. Abraham’s last act was to send trusty servants to the city of his brother, Nahor, on the border of Mesopotamia, to secure a woman of his own people as a wife for his son Isaac. It had long been the custom of Abraham’s people to marry their cousins. And Abraham died confident in that faith in God which he had learned from Melchizedek in the vanished schools of Salem. ~ The Urantia Book, 93:9.4
Adjusters - "Loving Leaders"
The type of Adjuster has much to do with the potential for expression of the human personality. On down through the ages, many of the great intellectual and spiritual leaders of Urantia have exerted their influence chiefly because of the superiority and previous experience of their indwelling Adjusters. ~ The Urantia Book, 109:4.3
I wish it were possible for me to help evolving mortals to achieve a better understanding and attain a fuller appreciation of the unselfish and superb work of the Adjusters living within them, who are so devoutly faithful to the task of fostering man’s spiritual welfare. These Monitors are efficient ministers to the higher phases of men’s minds; they are wise and experienced manipulators of the spiritual potential of the human intellect. These heavenly helpers are dedicated to the stupendous task of guiding you safely inward and upward to the celestial haven of happiness. These tireless toilers are consecrated to the future personification of the triumph of divine truth in your life everlasting. They are the watchful workers who pilot the God-conscious human mind away from the shoals of evil while expertly guiding the evolving soul of man toward the divine harbors of perfection on far-distant and eternal shores. The Adjusters are loving leaders, your safe and sure guides through the dark and uncertain mazes of your short earthly career; they are the patient teachers who so constantly urge their subjects forward in the paths of progressive perfection. They are the careful custodians of the sublime values of creature character. I wish you could love them more, co-operate with them more fully, and cherish them more affectionately. ~ The Urantia Book, 110:1.2
Jesus as Leader - Even in Childhood
Jesus was the generally accepted leader of the Nazareth lads who stood for the higher ideals of their day and generation. He was really loved by his youthful associates, not only because he was fair, but also because he possessed a rare and understanding sympathy that betokened love and bordered on discreet compassion. ~ The Urantia Book, 124:2.5
Jesus Rejects Purely Earthly Leadership
But trouble began to brew in Nazareth. Jesus’ attitude in these matters had resulted in creating a division among the Jewish youths of the city. About half had joined the nationalist organization, and the other half began the formation of an opposing group of more moderate patriots, expecting Jesus to assume the leadership. They were amazed when he refused the honor offered him, pleading as an excuse his heavy family responsibilities, which they all allowed. But the situation was still further complicated when, presently, a wealthy Jew, Isaac, a moneylender to the gentiles, came forward agreeing to support Jesus’ family if he would lay down his tools and assume leadership of these Nazareth patriots.
Jesus, then scarcely seventeen years of age, was confronted with one of the most delicate and difficult situations of his early life. Patriotic issues, especially when complicated by tax-gathering foreign oppressors, are always difficult for spiritual leaders to relate themselves to, and it was doubly so in this case since the Jewish religion was involved in all this agitation against Rome. ~ The Urantia Book, 127:2.5
Jesus to Andrew, Leader of the Apostles
When the Master had finished speaking to James Zebedee, he stepped around to the end of the table where Andrew sat and, looking his faithful helper in the eyes, said: “Andrew, you have faithfully represented me as acting head of the ambassadors of the heavenly kingdom. Although you have sometimes doubted and at other times manifested dangerous timidity, still, you have always been sincerely just and eminently fair in dealing with your associates. Ever since the ordination of you and your brethren as messengers of the kingdom, you have been self-governing in all group administrative affairs except that I designated you as the acting head of these chosen ones. In no other temporal matter have I acted to direct or to influence your decisions. And this I did in order to provide for leadership in the direction of all your subsequent group deliberations. In my universe and in my Father’s universe of universes, our brethren-sons are dealt with as individuals in all their spiritual relations, but in all group relationships we unfailingly provide for definite leadership. Our kingdom is a realm of order, and where two or more will creatures act in co-operation, there is always provided the authority of leadership. ~ The Urantia Book, 181:2.16
But as religion becomes institutionalized, its power for good is curtailed, while the possibilities for evil are greatly multiplied. The dangers of formalized religion are: fixation of beliefs and crystallization of sentiments; accumulation of vested interests with increase of secularization; tendency to standardize and fossilize truth; diversion of religion from the service of God to the service of the church; inclination of leaders to become administrators instead of ministers; tendency to form sects and competitive divisions; establishment of oppressive ecclesiastical authority; creation of the aristocratic “chosen-people” attitude; fostering of false and exaggerated ideas of sacredness; the routinizing of religion and the petrification of worship; tendency to venerate the past while ignoring present demands; failure to make up-to-date interpretations of religion; entanglement with functions of secular institutions; it creates the evil discrimination of religious castes; it becomes an intolerant judge of orthodoxy; it fails to hold the interest of adventurous youth and gradually loses the saving message of the gospel of eternal salvation. ~ The Urantia Book, 99:6.3
Women Are Spiritual Leaders
Women seem to have more intuition than men, but they also appear to be somewhat less logical. Woman, however, has always been the moral standard-bearer and the spiritual leader of mankind. The hand that rocks the cradle still fraternizes with destiny. ~ The Urantia Book, 84:6.4
War and Leadership-
New Heroes Needed
But even in passing, war should be honored as the school of experience which compelled a race of arrogant individualists to submit themselves to highly concentrated authority—a chief executive. Old-fashioned war did select the innately great men for leadership, but modern war no longer does this. To discover leaders society must now turn to the conquests of peace: industry, science, and social achievement. ~ The Urantia Book, 70:2.21
Leadership in Primitive Society
Sex hunger and mother love establish the family. But real government does not appear until superfamily groups have begun to form. In the prefamily days of the horde, leadership was provided by informally chosen individuals.
While primitive authority was based on strength, physical power, the ideal government is the representative system wherein leadership is based on ability, but in the days of barbarism there was entirely too much war to permit representative government to function effectively. In the long struggle between division of authority and unity of command, the dictator won. The early and diffuse powers of the primitive council of elders were gradually concentrated in the person of the absolute monarch. After the arrival of real kings the groups of elders persisted as quasi-legislative-judicial advisory bodies; later on, legislatures of co-ordinate status made their appearance, and eventually supreme courts of adjudication were established separate from the legislatures. ~ The Urantia Book, 70:12.2
Urantia Leadership of the Four-And-Twenty
Since the times of Michael’s bestowal on your world the general management of Urantia has been intrusted to a special group on Jerusem of twenty-four onetime Urantians. Qualification for membership on this commission is unknown to us, but we have observed that those who have been thus commissioned have all been contributors to the enlarging sovereignty of the Supreme in the system of Satania. By nature they were all real leaders when they functioned on Urantia, and (excepting Machiventa Melchizedek) these qualities of leadership have been further augmented by mansion world experience and supplemented by the training of Jerusem citizenship. Members are nominated to the twenty-four by the cabinet of Lanaforge, seconded by the Most Highs of Edentia, approved by the Assigned Sentinel of Jerusem, and appointed by Gabriel of Salvington in accordance with the mandate of Michael. The temporary appointees function just as fully as do the permanent members of this commission of special supervisors. ~ The Urantia Book, 114:2.0
Who Are the Four And Twenty?
At the center of the seven angelic residential circles on Jerusem is located the headquarters of the Urantia advisory council, the four and twenty counselors. John the Revelator called them the four and twenty elders: “And round about the throne were four and twenty seats, and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment.” The throne in the center of this group is the judgment seat of the presiding archangel, the throne of the resurrection roll call of mercy and justice for all Satania. This judgment seat has always been on Jerusem, but the twenty-four surrounding seats were placed in position no more than nineteen hundred years ago, soon after Christ Michael was elevated to the full sovereignty of Nebadon. These four and twenty counselors are his personal agents on Jerusem, and they have authority to represent the Master Son in all matters concerning the roll calls of Satania and in many other phases of the scheme of mortal ascension on the isolated worlds of the system. They are the designated agents for executing the special requests of Gabriel and the unusual mandates of Michael.
These twenty-four counselors have been recruited from the eight Urantia races, and the last of this group were assembled at the time of the resurrection roll call of Michael, nineteen hundred years ago. This Urantia advisory council is made up of the following members:
- Onagar, the master mind of the pre-Planetary Prince age, who directed his fellows in the worship of “The Breath Giver.”
- Mansant, the great teacher of the post-Planetary Prince age on Urantia, who pointed his fellows to the veneration of “The Great Light.”
- Onamonalonton, a far-distant leader of the red man and the one who directed this race from the worship of many gods to the veneration of “The Great Spirit.”
- Orlandof, a prince of the blue men and their leader in the recognition of the divinity of “The Supreme Chief.”
- Porshunta, the oracle of the extinct orange race and the leader of this people in the worship of “The Great Teacher.”
- Singlangton, the first of the yellow men to teach and lead his people in the worship of “One Truth” instead of many. Thousands of years ago the yellow man knew of the one God.
- Fantad, the deliverer of the green men from darkness and their leader in the worship of “The One Source of Life.”
- Orvonon, the enlightener of the indigo races and their leader in the onetime service of “The God of Gods.”
- Adam, the discredited but rehabilitated planetary father of Urantia, a Material Son of God who was relegated to the likeness of mortal flesh, but who survived and was subsequently elevated to this position by the decree of Michael.
- Eve, the mother of the violet race of Urantia, who suffered the penalty of default with her mate and was also rehabilitated with him and assigned to serve with this group of mortal survivors.
- Enoch, the first of the mortals of Urantia to fuse with the Thought Adjuster during the mortal life in the flesh.
- Moses, the emancipator of a remnant of the submerged violet race and the instigator of the revival of the worship of the Universal Father under the name of “The God of Israel.”
- Elijah, a translated soul of brilliant spiritual achievement during the post-Material Son age.
- Machiventa Melchizedek, the only Son of this order to bestow himself upon the Urantia races. While still numbered as a Melchizedek, he has become “forever a minister of the Most Highs,” eternally assuming the assignment of service as a mortal ascender, having sojourned on Urantia in the likeness of mortal flesh at Salem in the days of Abraham. This Melchizedek has latterly been proclaimed vicegerent Planetary Prince of Urantia with headquarters on Jerusem and authority to act in behalf of Michael, who is actually the Planetary Prince of the world whereon he experienced his terminal bestowal in human form. Notwithstanding this, Urantia is still supervised by successive resident governors general, members of the four and twenty counselors.
- John the Baptist, the forerunner of Michael’s mission on Urantia and, in the flesh, distant cousin of the Son of Man.
- 1-2-3 the first, the leader of the loyal midway creatures in the service of Gabriel at the time of the Caligastia betrayal, elevated to this position by Michael soon after his entrance upon unconditioned sovereignty.
These selected personalities are exempt from the ascension regime for the time being, on Gabriel’s request, and we have no idea how long they may serve in this capacity.
Seats numbers 17, 18, 19, and 20 are not permanently occupied. They are temporarily filled by the unanimous consent of the sixteen permanent members, being kept open for later assignment to ascending mortals from the present postbestowal Son age on Urantia.
Numbers 21, 22, 23, and 24 are likewise temporarily filled while being held in reserve for the great teachers of other and subsequent ages which undoubtedly will follow the present age. Eras of the Magisterial Sons and Teacher Sons and the ages of light and life are to be anticipated on Urantia, regardless of unexpected visitations of divine Sons which may or may not occur. ~ The Urantia Book, 45:4.0