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#1 Bill Martin

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Posted 30 December 2007 - 02:34 PM

Has anyone here taken an active role in a mature study group of seasoned readers? My main home group takes place Tuesday nights on the second floor of 533 Diversey, the room where the oriiginal Forum met and the questions were asked that resulted in the Urantia Papers.. The longtime members, besides staff from Urantia Foundation, are composed almost equally from Urantia Association International and Fifth Epochal Fellowship. One, Cece Forrester, has been studying on and off in the same room just about as long as have I, 39 years. These are all long-time readers and dedicated students of the Revelation.

In the past, I really didn't like all of them and had "issues" (mostly within myself) that kept me from engaging them as brothers and sisters. But , as time goes on, the more you get to know someone, the more you understand and love them. Some of these people have been unethical to me in the past and as time has passed, i have learned it is best to forgive. This has not all been "sweetness and light" yet we have come together to a place where it seems, at times, our unity impinges upon the Cosmic mind and we think cohesively in a coherent manner. We don't always finish eachothers sentences, by any means. We do support eachothers inquiry and have gone beyond the egotistical "who knows the book the best" posturing.

What I am saying is we share. We share all of our being. We are open. We are sincere with eachother and have no secrets. The upwellings of our minds have free expression and confession. There is no "second-thinking" or holding back.

At it's best, our souls are in control and we are close to functioning with what must be mota. This is just some of the time, the best of times. I know you can experience "heaven-on-earth" by letting the heaven that lives in the center of your mind to flow out into the rest of your life.


As I have said, some of the best moments of my life have come sitting around tables talking with persons.
Slowly but surely the Power of Love is overcoming the Love of Power

#2 PHIL

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 10:15 AM

Hi Bill;

Great post;

I must say I envy you a little bit being at 533 DIVERSEY for a Study Group.

you wrote;

What I am saying is we share. We share all of our being. We are open. We are sincere with eachother and have no secrets. The upwellings of our minds have free expression and confession. There is no "second-thinking" or holding back.

REPLY;

That would be Heaven on Earth[Urantia] to me ;)

The fear of Judgment and rejection is hard to overcome
not just Secrets but thoughts and Ideas one may have
about the UB can be held back BY THE SAME FEARS.

It would be great to be able to express ones self and not
face rejection but just maybe correction or face Judgment
but only concern and sincere willingness to understand.

All types of human relationships are the real wealth on Urantia.

And sitting around a table talking from the soul with others
is indeed a good time.


PHIL















Has anyone here taken an active role in a mature study group of seasoned readers? My main home group takes place Tuesday nights on the second floor of 533 Diversey, the room where the oriiginal Forum met and the questions were asked that resulted in the Urantia Papers.. The longtime members, besides staff from Urantia Foundation, are composed almost equally from Urantia Association International and Fifth Epochal Fellowship. One, Cece Forrester, has been studying on and off in the same room just about as long as have I, 39 years. These are all long-time readers and dedicated students of the Revelation.

In the past, I really didn't like all of them and had "issues" (mostly within myself) that kept me from engaging them as brothers and sisters. But , as time goes on, the more you get to know someone, the more you understand and love them. Some of these people have been unethical to me in the past and as time has passed, i have learned it is best to forgive. This has not all been "sweetness and light" yet we have come together to a place where it seems, at times, our unity impinges upon the Cosmic mind and we think cohesively in a coherent manner. We don't always finish eachothers sentences, by any means. We do support eachothers inquiry and have gone beyond the egotistical "who knows the book the best" posturing.

What I am saying is we share. We share all of our being. We are open. We are sincere with eachother and have no secrets. The upwellings of our minds have free expression and confession. There is no "second-thinking" or holding back.

At it's best, our souls are in control and we are close to functioning with what must be mota. This is just some of the time, the best of times. I know you can experience "heaven-on-earth" by letting the heaven that lives in the center of your mind to flow out into the rest of your life.


As I have said, some of the best moments of my life have come sitting around tables talking with persons.



#3 Bill Martin

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 10:47 AM

Those treasures of brotherly affection enrich our souls, make us fabulously wealthy beyond concept when we share them with one another. We nourish each other with God's cornucopia of spiritual fruits, recieving as we bestow .

This is the real wealth you speak of ,PHIL, the heavenly treasures we do take with us as we store them up in the mota of our souls The Urantia Book says:

P.1228 - 3 Everything nonspiritual in human experience, excepting personality, is a means to an end. Every true relationship of mortal man with other persons--human or divine--is an end in itself. And such fellowship with the personality of Deity is the eternal goal of universe ascension.
Slowly but surely the Power of Love is overcoming the Love of Power

#4 Meredith Van Woert

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 10:45 AM

Hi Bill and all,

Your question, "Does selfless study elevate one to a higher level" makes me wonder what you had in mind when you asked. To me, when I want to study something, the act of study is very much about myself. I'm doing something because I want to get something out of it for myself. I go to study group because of the benefits I receive. My motive to go to study group is not selfless. Study group my area is at night after a day of work in the middle of the week, and I have to go to work the next day. This takes effort. But study group feeds me. It's a particular type of nourishment not found in food. Study group replenishes diminishing resources. At my age I need it. I love to go and benefit very much!

Cheers,
Meredith

#5 Bill Martin

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 02:13 PM

Dear Meredith,

Your question, "Does selfless study elevate one to a higher level" makes me wonder what you had in mind when you asked...

I am not sure to what you are referring. It is true that our selves just intrude in deep study of Urantia book meanings, for instance:

P.951 - 6 Man naturally tends to believe that which he deems best for him, that which is in his immediate or remote interest; self-interest largely obscures logic.

P.555 - 5 You will learn that you increase your burdens and decrease the likelihood of success by taking yourself too seriously.

p.555-5... though the work is important, the self is not. When you feel important, you lose energy to the wear and tear of ego dignity so that there is little energy left to do the work. Self-importance, not work-importance, exhausts immature creatures; it is the self element that exhausts, not the effort to achieve.

P.549 - 1 It helps to avoid an overdevelopment of the notion of one's self-importance.

P.1119 - 7 One of the characteristic peculiarities of genuine religious assurance is that, notwithstanding the absoluteness of its affirmations and the stanchness of its attitude, the spirit of its expression is so poised and tempered that it never conveys the slightest impression of self-assertion or egoistic exaltation. The wisdom of religious experience is something of a paradox in that it is both humanly original and Adjuster derivative. Religious force is not the product of the individual's personal prerogatives but rather the outworking of that sublime partnership of man and the everlasting source of all wisdom. Thus do the words and acts of true and undefiled religion become compellingly authoritative for all enlightened mortals.

1090-1 But the activation of religion is superemotional, unifying the entire human experience on transcendent levels through contact with, and release of, spiritual energies in the mortal life.


I go to study group eagerly anticipating the privelege of being part of a group whose members all (strive is the wrong word) seek unity . Who luxuriate in the transcendent potentiality that unfolds when the artifice of mental armor is relaxed and personality is allowed free reign. At that moment, after our moment of silence, hopefully we are prepared for soul growth, superphilosophic wisdom, personal revelation ( or at least our attention is arrested and all focused.)Then God can work more effectively through our instruments to "strike the harmony chords of truth." This melody of souls working in harmony on isolated worlds resonates throughout the cosmos
I am not spinning fantasies here, I am equally certain all the core members of the study group would validate what i say here and now. If you wish, I will email you their addresses. You can ask them.

Love


Bill








P.1781 - 1 The social characteristics of a true religion consist in the fact that it invariably seeks to convert the individual and to transform the world. Religion implies the existence of undiscovered ideals which far transcend the known standards of ethics and morality embodied in even the highest social usages of the most mature institutions of civilization. Religion reaches out for undiscovered ideals, unexplored realities, superhuman values, divine wisdom, and true spirit attainment. True religion does all of this; all other beliefs are not worthy of the name
Slowly but surely the Power of Love is overcoming the Love of Power

#6 Meredith Van Woert

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 04:32 PM

Okay. I am following your line of thinking. You're talking about your study group experience. Mine too. There is no substitute for face-to-face group study. People in my s.g. come from various occupations/professions. Several have disabilities and do not work much. Most are middle aged, with varying political slants, from varying socio-economic strata, from varying religious affiliations and experience. Some are married; some are single. We have one main thing in common and that's the Urantia Book. That's what brings us together every week.

I imagine we probably wouldn't hang out every week, if we were a "book club," you know the type where everyone reads the same book, for example: one book (fiction or non-fiction) a week; and then gets together to sit down and discuss it. We, as a group, probably wouldn't have the staying power or dedication to do that every week for eighteen years. Yep. We've been meeting once a week for eighteen years to read the UB. Must be some reason for that. And there are no signs of slacking the pace.

We come from all different life experiences. There is a diversity of viewpoints and attitudes. That's the beauty of it - learning about the different viewpoints - the way people see things. Hearing about people's experiences, as they pertain to grasping an understanding about what we happen to be reading at the moment, sheds light on what we're reading. We've developed an intense curiosity about the meanings of particular words the revelators use. We work on it by taking a sentence apart to try to get to the meaning of the words. The meaning of the words in conjunction with the concept in question or a particular sentence.

I hope you don't mind if I get stuck on a word or two from time to time. The word "selfless" triggered comments made in my previous post. Just thinking out loud once again.

Cheers,
Meredith


Dear Meredith,

Your question, "Does selfless study elevate one to a higher level" makes me wonder what you had in mind when you asked...

I am not sure to what you are referring. It is true that our selves just intrude in deep study of Urantia book meanings, for instance:

P.951 - 6 Man naturally tends to believe that which he deems best for him, that which is in his immediate or remote interest; self-interest largely obscures logic.

P.555 - 5 You will learn that you increase your burdens and decrease the likelihood of success by taking yourself too seriously.

p.555-5... though the work is important, the self is not. When you feel important, you lose energy to the wear and tear of ego dignity so that there is little energy left to do the work. Self-importance, not work-importance, exhausts immature creatures; it is the self element that exhausts, not the effort to achieve.

P.549 - 1 It helps to avoid an overdevelopment of the notion of one's self-importance.

P.1119 - 7 One of the characteristic peculiarities of genuine religious assurance is that, notwithstanding the absoluteness of its affirmations and the stanchness of its attitude, the spirit of its expression is so poised and tempered that it never conveys the slightest impression of self-assertion or egoistic exaltation. The wisdom of religious experience is something of a paradox in that it is both humanly original and Adjuster derivative. Religious force is not the product of the individual's personal prerogatives but rather the outworking of that sublime partnership of man and the everlasting source of all wisdom. Thus do the words and acts of true and undefiled religion become compellingly authoritative for all enlightened mortals.

1090-1 But the activation of religion is superemotional, unifying the entire human experience on transcendent levels through contact with, and release of, spiritual energies in the mortal life.


I go to study group eagerly anticipating the privelege of being part of a group whose members all (strive is the wrong word) seek unity . Who luxuriate in the transcendent potentiality that unfolds when the artifice of mental armor is relaxed and personality is allowed free reign. At that moment, after our moment of silence, hopefully we are prepared for soul growth, superphilosophic wisdom, personal revelation ( or at least our attention is arrested and all focused.)Then God can work more effectively through our instruments to "strike the harmony chords of truth." This melody of souls working in harmony on isolated worlds resonates throughout the cosmos
I am not spinning fantasies here, I am equally certain all the core members of the study group would validate what i say here and now. If you wish, I will email you their addresses. You can ask them.

Love


Bill








P.1781 - 1 The social characteristics of a true religion consist in the fact that it invariably seeks to convert the individual and to transform the world. Religion implies the existence of undiscovered ideals which far transcend the known standards of ethics and morality embodied in even the highest social usages of the most mature institutions of civilization. Religion reaches out for undiscovered ideals, unexplored realities, superhuman values, divine wisdom, and true spirit attainment. True religion does all of this; all other beliefs are not worthy of the name



#7 Guest_Rey Baskerville_*

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Posted 21 May 2008 - 03:21 AM

I imagined, when I walked in to my first study group, that I'd find seraphims floating about the place and everyone aum-ing and sporting golden haloes. Instead, I found myself in an argument with a long time reader who felt he had a lot to prove. I was terribly disappointed.

The following meet, again, I was the target of this man's need to show off.

When I later learned that this particular group was no longer popular because of his inability to hold his tongue, I accepted the challenge to experience him without judgment. More disappointment.

But every meet I get to find a new way to look past his aggression and excercise some self control. Ordinarily, I'd have frozen him out... ignored him. Or even stopped going altogether. But I choose to stay put and participate. I also choose to allow some compassion to surface. My selfish desire to incorporate my personality into this group invites me to be a little selfless.

I've even learned to bring this new behavior to work.

#8 RTA

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Posted 21 May 2008 - 09:09 AM

Even amongst fellow UB readers one will sometimes encounter personalities that are difficult to deal with. I just read the excellent "The Return of the Prodigal Son" and it humbled me with its reminders of just how tolerant, patient, understanding and compassionate our Father in Heaven is. So my advice is to extend this prideful and overbearing person every ounce of brotherly love that you can muster and then pray for more. I, too, have been in study groups that had participants who were less than polite in their demeanor (shall we say) but in every case the overwhelming spirit of fellowship won out in the long run and that person either stopped coming or learned to be less disruptive.

#9 Bill Martin

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Posted 27 May 2008 - 10:53 AM

Dear Rey,

Once again, I enthuse over your intuitive (Mother Spirit Adjutant "intuition") grasp of essential reality. In the finished product, in the soul your are creating by your loving forbearance in dealing with "difficult" and obstreperous/aggressive , the words of the Book, the concepts you ponder are just the construction scaffolding that get you to the place where your spirit is strong, strong enough to leave your own selfish/defensive feelings behind as you embark upon the thrilling adventure of returning love in place of scorn.

The "fruits of the spirit" are heady and addictive and the product of discrimination and selection. You can be who and what you choose. Just as we are told about the "fruits of divinity" (look it up!) and the fruits of the spirit, I also postulate a corollary of "weeds of the spirit" denoting those vestigial animal-like byproducts of the unexamined life. These include: equivocation, procrastination, ease-seeking, etc., etc., and are generally removed by the deficiency training regime of the first few mansion worlds. You are working on them now which is both thrilling and humbling to me as i recall the years I had the book (from age 17) that I read, understood and failed to incorporate into my life because of lack of maturity, "weeds of the spirit," etc.

I was just at a retreat in the mountains of Idaho at a lovely convent and was reminded of myself by a person there who would get "into their cups" and then carry on and on listening to to the sound of their own voice, holding forth in stentorian declamation over minute points of difference, displaying an "unseasoned" familiarity with the facts of revelation but missing the truths of personal growth. This was me- before I came to the realization that my drunkeness was separating me from God, building a wall of opaque impenetrability between my "guiding light" and my evolving soul.

Like you with the "blowhard" in your study group, I made a supreme effort NOT to judge my fellow and instead love this person and pray that they will free their soul from the terrible bondage and step forth into the clear light of a new day. When we love the sinner and forgive the sin we become divine, a little bit.

The end result of the mediation of matter by mind in the presence of spirit is you gravitate towards the "higher" level. Maintaining focus is always difficult but being mindful of preserving a mental environment that is pleasant for God to live in helps create a nurturing and favorable medium for maximum soul growth. Replacing beastly urges, ghastly thoughts and violent emotions with sweetness and light may be a cliche but is nevertheless the path to eternal life and happiness.


Dear RTA,

The cultivation of the spirit of fellowship you mention is, in my humble opinion, the real and immediate work of our life that will eventuate in the growth of the Supreme and the flowering of the successively more spiritual ages of light and life here on this planet, after we are long gone. The "Prodigal Son" was along with the "parable of the Talents" one of Jesus' favorites. God never turns his back on us and goes through everything right along with us.

I really believe this is the key to the solution of all the world's problems. It is wrapped up in how we see and treat one another. Caring for our neighbors as we care for ourselves.


Love to You Two.


Bill Martin
Slowly but surely the Power of Love is overcoming the Love of Power




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