About the Journal

The Journal is produced twice yearly and contains essays, articles and study aids by readers and for readers of The Urantia Book. Any interpretations, opinions, conclusions, or artistic representations, whether stated or implied, are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Urantia Association International, the National or Affiliate Urantia Associations, or the editorial team of the Association’s Journal.

You can view the entire collection of issues in the archives. All issues before 2017 are downloadable PDF format.

The Journal is currently published in English  , French  and Spanish  . (There are some older issues that were published in Finnish .) You can view the French and Spanish Journals by clicking on the language choices in the pull down menu at the top of the page.

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Journal Editorial – May 2024

In every study group I’ve attended over the years conjecture invariably enters our discussions. Some of it is wild speculation; other comments are more thoughtfully informed. In this issue of Journal we feature two interesting propositions. David Kantor, who has been working on a documentary focused on Christianity and The Urantia Book, speculates on the role of Christian philosopher Thomas Aquinas’ 13th century Summa Theologica as possible groundwork for the fifth epochal revelation. James Woodward gives us a detailed analysis of that allusive word “morontia,” and why it was necessary for the revelators to invent a new term to embrace a new concept more adequately.

Also, in this issue Mark Blackham explores the idea that the celestial personalities far above us sometimes find themselves at odds with one another. In his article “Dealing With Conflict In A Spiritual Life,” Mr. Blackham observes that disagreement in the heavenly realms is not unusual, particularly at the system, constellation, and local universe levels. He delineates the multiple beings whose role it is to mediate and reconcile the problems arising in creating and managing our grand universe.

Bringing us back to how our celestial friends do guide and enlighten us with new truths, Richard E. Warren provides a three-part study on “Truth, Beauty, and Goodness and the Father,” and how those three supreme values inform and help us develop our relationship with God.

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Thomas Aquinas and Some Speculation on the Origin of The Urantia Book

Curiosity, rumors, second-hand recollections, and imaginative speculation continue to fuel interest in a topic of widespread interest—How The Urantia Book came into existence. While the true story likely never will be known by humans simply because it involves things beyond our comprehension, it’s possible to amuse ourselves by creating a plausible story from these suppositions as they combine with information taken from The Urantia Book and the history of Christianity. So, consider the following as mere speculation.

Emma Christensen, the last of the Contact Commissioners, told me that work on the revelation began in the Middle Ages. Other apocryphal sources specify the 1200s.  From comments in The Urantia Book, we can reasonably assume that Machiventa was present on the planet in the capacity of Resident Governor General sometime in the High Middle Ages. This period, particularly in the 12th century, saw a widespread spiritual awakening across Europe. It was the apex of Christian civilization.  There was a desire to know more about Jesus and how to live a Christ-like life (see references below). 

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What is Morontia?

Definitions

Though it may be premature to forecast wide acceptance of The Urantia Book, it’s clearly rising in visibility due to decades of wise dissemination efforts and, of course, the internet. The first page of the Foreword, however, carries four statements calling attention to the serious problem of confusion on Urantia. We are notified—and warned—that progress on our world will depend on the evolution of human wisdom and revelation. Our own community of reader / believers is also confused about certain terms and definitions found in the teachings. We ought to resolve this confusion among Urantia Book devotees as we continue to take the advanced messages out into the mainstream. It is in that spirit that I advance my personal theory: morontia is akin to supermorality.

Evolving mortal creatures experience an irresistible urge to symbolize their finite concepts of God. Man’s consciousness of moral duty and his spiritual idealism represent a value level—an experiential reality—which is difficult of symbolization. 0:2.1 (3.14) [all bold indicates author’s emphasis]

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Dealing With Conflict in A Spiritual Life

Mark Blackham

Conflicts are an inevitable part of life on inhabited worlds, especially those worlds in the earlier stages of social and spiritual evolution. And this is certainly the case at the present stage of development on Urantia.

Things have improved over the centuries and, no doubt, they will continue to improve over time. But not until the distant future, when our planet finally attains the utopian ages of light and life, will we be entirely free of discord. This is not to say that, at such a time, we will all be of the same mind. But the way we deal with our differences will change significantly. Until we reach that utopia, and apart from national wars, we will experience two personal spheres of conflict—one is the conflict that takes place in the inner life (mind and soul), and the other is the conflict that occurs in the outer life (family and social).

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Truth, Beauty, Goodness, and the Father’s Will

Part 1 of 3

To material, evolutionary, finite creatures, a life predicated on the living of the Father’s will leads directly to the attainment of spirit supremacy in the personality arena and brings such creatures one step nearer the comprehension of the Father-Infinite. Such a Father life is one predicated on truth, sensitive to beauty, and dominated by goodness. 106:9.12 (1175.1)

When the adventure of organizing time and space began, God commanded an imperfect universe to: “Be you perfect, even as I am perfect.” In time, along with the rest of creation, we will attain perfection and satisfy this preeminent and organizing command from the Father of all by living truth, creating beauty, and performing goodness.

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Dear Friends and Students of The Urantia Book,

Urantia Association International and Urantia Association of the United States invite you to attend the live broadcast of the 2024 Urantia Association International Conference via Zoom. The conference will be held March 28-31 in Baltimore, Maryland, USA.

The theme of the Conference will be “Nature and Nurture of the Soul”. Check out the latest video!

The broadcast will be available during the following periods:

  • Friday, March 29th, at 8:45 am EDT to 4:10 pm EDT
  • Saturday, March 30th, at 8:45 EDT to 4:10 pm EDT
  • Sunday, March 31st, at 8:15 am EDT to 11:00 am EDT

To calculate the streaming times where you live, visit: TimeandDate.com

We will also be offering two Special Workshops exclusive for the Zoom attendants.

Special Workshops:
The first workshop will be facilitated by Sherry Cathcart Chavis, titled, “Faith Unveiled: Nurturing the Soul’s Journey Towards Divine Perfection,” on Friday, March 29th from 9:30 am to 10:30 am EDT.

Faith is the key to soul transformation; its activities ensure the soul’s eternal salvation and progress. It inspires profound reflection, fosters spiritual growth, and aligns the soul with divine ideals, ultimately guiding it toward the goal of finding God and achieving divine perfection.

Reading Assignment: Before the workshop convenes, read and study Paper 132 (The Sojourn at Rome), Section 3, Truth and Faith.

The second workshop will be offered on Saturday, May 30th from 2:30 pm to 3:30 pm EDT. It will be facilitated by Agnès Lazar and Guy Perron on the theme, “How do we feed our souls? What is in the way of nurturing our soul?”

As we know from the revelation, each of us is the mother of our soul and therefore, we have the responsibility as good mothers to feed it properly.

‘4. Soul. The soul of man is an experiential acquirement. As a mortal creature chooses to “do the will of the Father in heaven,” so the indwelling spirit becomes the father of a new reality in human experience. The mortal and material mind is the mother of this same emerging reality. The substance of this new reality is neither material nor spiritual—it is morontial. This is the emerging and immortal soul which is destined to survive mortal death and begin the Paradise ascension.’ 0:5.10 (8.10)

Livestream Link:
This broadcast will be interactive via Zoom and will be live-streamed on Facebook. To help coordinate our clocks, here are some streaming time slots across the globe:

  • México City and Edmonton: Friday and Saturday: 6:45 am to 2:45 pm. Sunday: 7:15 am to 9:00 am
  • Bogotá and Lima: Friday and Saturday: 7:45 am to 3:10 pm. Sunday: 7:15 am to 10:00 am
  • Los Angeles and Arizona: Friday and Saturday: 5:45 am to 1:10 pm. Sunday: 5:15 am to 8:00 am
  • Buenos Aires and São Paulo: Friday and Saturday: 9:45 am to 5:10 pm. Sunday: 9:15 am to 12:00 pm
  • Paris: Friday and Saturday:  1:45 pm to 9:10 pm. Sunday: 1:15 pm to 4:00 pm
  • Sydney: Friday and Saturday: 11:45 pm to 7:00 am Sunday. Sunday: 11:15 pm to 2:00 am Monday.
  • Auckland: Saturday and Sunday: 1:45 am to 9:10 am. Monday: 1:15 am to 4:00 am

Join Zoom Meeting: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/86500983536

Meeting ID: 865 0098 3536

One tap mobile:

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Dial by your location:

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Meeting ID: 865 0098 3536
Find your local number: https://us06web.zoom.us/u/keHnoHm8dl

President’s Message – March 2024

Following Jesus

Enrique Traver

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

This world is only a bridge; you may pass over it, but you should not think to build a dwelling place upon it. 156:2.1 (1735.5)

He told them they could not stand still; they must go forward in righteousness or retrogress into evil and sin. He admonished them to “forget those things which are in the past while you push forward to embrace the greater realities of the kingdom.” 156:2.6 (1736.3)

This world is an arena where we develop and conquer the first steps to reach the morontia worlds, followed later by the steps to the spirit level. As Jesus said: just a bridge to cross. Reaching the end of that worldly bridge allows us to reach another shore, to reach a new reality of eternity, of the birth of the spirit, of drawing closer to the presence of our Father. Passing across this bridge implies a continuous straightforward movement with no stops for whatever reason. We must move ahead. When we keep moving forward, we free up the flow and attract other people to the journey. We produce the fruits of the spirit.

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The 2024 Urantia Association International Conference Approaches

Nature and Nurture of the Soul

 Baltimore, USA. March 28 – 31, 2024

Urantia Association International and Urantia Association of the United States are hosting the 12th International Conference in Baltimore, USA.  Sponsored by Urantia Foundation and Truthbook, the conference has been organized and coordinated by a host of worldwide volunteers to provide a spiritual learning experience for the global Urantia Book reader community.

The theme of the conference is The Nature and Nurture of the Soul.

To establish a framework for the study, all references to the soul from The Urantia Book were gathered and sorted into eight subtopics – four on the Nature of the Soul, and four on Nurture of the Soul.

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New Unity Initiative

Last year, Sue Seccombe, president of Urantia Book Fellowship, created a petition and sent if far and wide across our Urantia community. The petition was focused on unity and it garnered over 600 responses, almost all in the affirmative for setting our sights on true spiritual unity, and even organizational unity.

Due to that positive response, the General Council of the Fellowship passed a resolution creating a small team to engage with Urantia Association to discuss unity. Their resolution included terminology about the possibility of seeking unity between the two fraternal organizations. The resolution tasked their Unity Committee with: “Exploring the details and options of organizational cooperation and steps toward unity between the two social organizations that will best benefit the growth, understanding, and credibility of the Urantia revelation and presenting these recommendations to the General Council.” Such an executive action passed by the Fellowship’s General Council, signals an openness to resolve the historic schism.

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Focus on the Father – Faith

Going out on a limb of faith requires faith. 

Faith is a holy paradox: It’s a grab-hold thing on spirit levels and a let-go thing on material levels. With the affirmation of faith, we acknowledge a spirit reality and the divine beings who inhabit that reality—without seeing it, or them. With living faith, we invest implicit trust that those realities and beings are friendly to us, even love us. With the exercise of faith, we snuggle up to those realities and beings like we do our beloved family and our nurturing natural environment. With the perfection of faith, we fully share the will of God, living the Perfect Plan. For mortals that’s a plan in progress.

“Perfecting is of God. To wish for perfection is of man.” 

— Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
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Slow and Steady

The Prison Inmate Response Team (PIRT) for Canada was formed in 2016 by Chris Gravel, who was inspired by a PIRT Tidings article. Chris started by seeding 46 prison libraries. Then the wait for a first inmate letter began… and two years later, in November 2018, the first request for a book arrived. Another arrived the following year. And then, in 2021, a woman requested a book and began to spread the word, resulting in three more referrals. And later, two more book requests arrived, one from a prison chaplain.

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Urantia Book Teacher Education Program

Urantia University Institute – Now Accepting Applications

Following several years of development and testing by a team of curriculum developers and experienced students from the major Urantia organizations, The Urantia Book Teacher Education Program (TEP) is now accepting applications for the 2024 – 2025 academic year.

The hybrid one-year training program features a five-day, in-person orientation and training session at Urantia Foundation, followed by three trimesters of online study and weekly training and discussion sessions on Zoom. It is designed for people who are serious students of the Urantia revelation with a track record of participation in study groups and Urantia Book education programs.

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President’s Message – December 2023

Our Long-Range Plan

Students of The Urantia Book, and especially the people at Urantia Association International, have a mission clearly defined by the teachings of the fifth epochal revelation, as well as in our first Bylaws amendment, which was recently approved by our International Representative Council (IRC). 

All those who find God can embrace this mission by recognizing our affiliation to the Universal Father and, consequently, by accepting the brotherhood of all mortals on the planet. Although it is a mission that can be carried out individually, we can also come together as a group of students who are passionate about the revelation. Together, we can coordinate our efforts to fulfill this mission. This is how the Urantia Association came into being, beginning with the challenge of formulating a plan that can unite its members as a team in order to work objectively and harmoniously in this direction. 

Having a Long-Range Plan (LRP) to guide our work serves multiple purposes, such as helping us to stay focused on where we want to go, what we need to do, and how we should do it: 

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2024 Urantia Association International Conference Update

Nurture Your Soul with Study, Worship, and Camaraderie! 

The Urantia Book reminds us that we mortals are a gregarious lot. A Melchizedek states in Paper 49, “Human beings are all gregarious.” In Paper 99 another writes, “The fact of man’s gregariousness perforce determines that religious groups will come into existence.” It is wonderful to attend a Urantia conference to attain a deeper understanding of the revelation, but let us also heed the words of our Estonian brother, Kamo Kalda, from a Urantia Foundation conference report: 

“Whenever I speak with someone who has attended a conference, they usually don’t remember the topics of the presentations, but they do remember the people, the emotions, and the joy.” 

It will be six years since the last, in-person international conference, due to Covid canceling the Peru conference of 2021. Time (and Zoom) breeds complacency, so let us not forget the value of gathering in numbers, the force of our Adjusters when we come together in a large group, the strength that we garner from the Spirit of Truth that shines so brightly when we study and pray in-mass. Let us come together to meet and hug our global brothers and sisters, joyfully embrace our geographically distant friends, and to laugh, learn, worship, and live in our mortal, gregarious fashion. 

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2023 ANZURA Annual Conference Report 

Talkin’ ‘Bout A Revelation 

It has been an honor and a privilege to be involved in bringing this conference to Urantia Book readers of Australia and New Zealand. It was well attended with people coming from across Sydney, Newcastle, Central Coast, Melbourne, Canberra, Hobart, Adelaide, Western Australia, New Zealand and the USA. Thank you all for coming! We had a great time catching up with old friends and making new ones, engaging with each other and exploring much about our favorite topics! 

The problem we wanted to try to address at this conference was how we, as a readership, talk about The Urantia Book revelation with people less familiar with it. And despite being avid followers of its teachings, we seem to lack some basic principles and adequate tools or experience to attractively convey its concepts to new readers. It is hoped that the conversations started at this conference have been helpful and that the topic will continue to be addressed.  

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Third Latin American Conference Report

The Fifth Revelation in the XXI Century 

This past October, the third Latin American conference of readers of The Urantia Book was held in the historic area of the ancient Teotihuacan. Amidst this backdrop over 1500 years old and later reclaimed by the Aztecs, the Third Latin American Urantia Book Conference centered on the theme of the Fifth Revelation in the 21st Century.    

Urantia Association International organized the conference with the support of Urantia Foundation and the local Urantia Association Mexico. Each of these entities cooperated for months planning, developing objectives, making decisions and obtaining the necessary funds for a successful event. 

Forty-three participants traveled to the ancient site of Teotihuacán located outside Mexico City. Additionally, almost 300 readers joined the online broadcast––a Latin American Conference first. Urantia Book readers from 11 countries participated, including 15 young adult readers. 

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Focus on the Father – Spiritual Gifts 

“True faith is faith only if the actions of your life are in harmony with it and never contradict it.”  — Leo Tolstoy  

The concept of faith—a gift we may give ourselves—is in some ways misunderstood, as are other fundamentals of evolutionary religion. Urantia Book students have more clarity on the concept, as careful study sweeps away confused definitions. It becomes a problem for humanity when true religious ideals are minimized or limited by the avoidance of spiritual meanings and values in a quest for an easy existence. The consecration of faith does require effort; there is a wide gulf between the human and divine, but we have an inner bridge.  

When it comes to the bestowal of spiritual gifts, the Father is limited by man’s capacity for receiving these divine endowments. Although the Father is no respecter of persons, in the bestowal of spiritual gifts he is limited by man’s faith and by his willingness always to abide by the Father’s will. 166:4.11 (1831.2) emphasis added

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The Mission of the Prisoner Inquiry Response Team 

“After reading some of your book, The Urantia Book, I have become highly intrigued. I am writing to you to request a copy of this outstanding literary work so I can know more about God the Father of ALL, and every aspect of Him and his heavenly host.”  

These enthusiastic words dictated by a prison inmate are an excerpt from a letter written to me as a member of the Prison Inquiry Response Team (PIRT), a ministry sponsored by the Urantia International Association. Another inmate wrote, “I am an avid truth seeker, and recently a friend shared The Urantia Book with me. I have been amazed, edified, and overjoyed. It ties together so many loose ends and confirms certain ideals of mine while also expanding upon them.”  

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Update to the Urantia Association Bylaws

Dear Urantia Association Members, Presidents, and Vice-Presidents, 

I trust that you’re aware of the revised version of the Bylaws of Urantia Association International, a document that has received an extensive update. These Bylaws represent the culmination of years of Urantia Association’s experiences, growth, and dedication to promoting The Urantia Book and its invaluable teachings worldwide.  Delving into a legal text might seem tedious; some may even question its relevance to our spiritual mission and work. 

However, it’s crucial to recognize that these Bylaws form the bedrock of our existence as a legal entity. They not only provide the framework for our service operations but are also indispensable for navigating the complexities of the diverse languages and cultures within our organization. Compliance with the laws of various countries necessitates having governing documents that regulate our affairs and define our societal role. These guidelines prevent confusion as to the duties and interactions of all our dedicated volunteers. Clarity on governance provides assurance that our elected leaders can focus on our mission to promote an epochal revelation. 

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