Living Morontially

From Information to Transformation to Application

This is a workshop being presented at The Urantia Book Fellowship’s Summer Study Session 21 – 24 July, 2022

…mortal personality, through its own choosing, possesses the power of transferring its seat of identity from the passing material-intellect system to the higher morontial-soul system which, in association with the Thought Adjuster is created as a new vehicle for personality manifestation. [Paper 112:5.4, page 1232.5]

“Living Morontially” is an SSS’22 experiential workshop designed to explore ways to consciously apply the teachings of The Urantia Book.  

Would you like to join others in a journey to take the inspiring words off the pages and into your life? Together we’ll share our experiences and encourage each other with a variety of strategies to discover how to reflect God’s will and way.  

This two-session workshop will be held on Friday, July 22nd in both morning and afternoon sessions. Pre-registration is required by July 10th; participants will be given a short assignment in advance of the workshop. The workshop is led by Bobbie Dreier, Sharri Gaines, and Sherry Cathcart Chavis.

To register, or for more information, send an email with your phone number to Bobbie Dreier at [email protected].  

Graduation of David Linthicum

“A Mighty Oak Has Fallen”

Long time devoted Urantia Book student and servant David Linthicum graduated from Urantia in the early morning hours June 1, 2022. He was informed of cancer earlier this year and selected aggressive therapy, bravely giving his all, in hopes the healing process would emerge victorious over time. David kept a wonderful, positive attitude throughout the months of treatment, and met the trials of illness and impending death with a calm dignity, true courage, generosity, steadfast faith, and hope for eternal life.

David continued to his last precious days on Earth to give his time and resources to important legacy projects he had been involved with. He was a dedicated servant to mankind. Perhaps not too many people know that David wrote and self-published a book titled “The Emerging Recognition of Jesus’ Divine Nature.”

David helped charter the Spirit of Oklahoma Urantia Association, as well as serving as its president. He was a regular study partner with a group in Tulsa, Oklahoma. David served two terms as President of Urantia Association of the United States (UAUS), as well as Dissemination Chair for Urantia Association International. He helped found the Prisoner Inquiry Response Team (PIRT) and served as its Director for many years, as well as becoming a volunteer who personally answered letters and gave support to many prison inmates.

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Fearless Leader of PIRT — Ode to a Friend

The Prison Inquiry Response Team (PIRT) is very near and dear to me. Before it had the official title and an official Director (David), responding to prisoners was one of my duties at Urantia Foundation. As the Reader Services Manager, I was fielding lots of inquiries about The Urantia Book, including a growing number of letters from prisoners all over the United States. I decided to recruit my friends in Urantia Association to help with the workload, and a lasting service partnership developed between Urantia Foundation and the Association. The volunteers were eager to serve in a unique and valuable project.

Those “inside the walls” often sent stunningly sincere letters to the publisher; some were requesting pen-pals but that fell outside the office duties. Handing off the correspondence worked out well. Urantia Foundation continued to send the books after the volunteers had vetted an inmate’s level of interest.

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Eulogy for David Linthicum

(Editor’s note: David asked Rick to make his eulogy a testament to the teachings of The Urantia Book. He wanted those gathered to hear what his religious life was about.)

My name is Rick Lyon. I have known David Linthicum for many years. I am and always shall be his friend.

I first want to point out the design you may have seen that David had engraved on the headstone and the pin I am wearing. The cross combined with the three blue concentric circles. The cross represents the crucifixion of Jesus. The blue circles represent the Trinity—God the Father, the Eternal Son, and the Infinite Spirit. The cross represents the greatest demonstration of love this universe has ever known, and the blue circles represent the source of that love.

When Billy Graham was nearing the end of his time on this earth, he was asked if he feared death. His reply was: “Fear death? I look forward to it. When you hear that Billy Graham is dead, don’t you believe it.”

This mortal life is only a shadow, the beginning, of spiritual reality. What comes next is more real and more true, beautiful, and good than anything we can experience in this life on earth.

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The Eyedropper, Spoon, and Shovel

(Editor’s note: This article was first published in the 2018 November Journal. It was adapted from a plenary speech delivered at the 2018 Netherlands conference. We are re-posting it in memory of the late David Linthicum who passed away on June 1, 2022.)

The conference theme of the 10th Urantia Association International conference in The Netherlands was “Jesus as a Teacher.” When I was asked to be one of the plenary speakers I thought it would be a great opportunity, even though I had never given a conference speech.

At the 2016 conference in San Antonio, TX, I presented my very first workshop, so I decided to expand on that workshop theme for my plenary speech in Holland, the workshop was titled, “The Eyedropper, Spoon, and Shovel.”

I came up with the idea primarily based on my experience with trying to get my family and friends to read The Urantia Book.

I found The Urantia Book and finished a cover-to-cover reading in 1996. Like many of us, I was eager to share this marvelous book with those closest to me, my family and friends. I couldn’t wait to tell my best friend the good news!  I had discovered a true treasure, something beyond my wildest imagination.

One day I bought him a book and handed it to him saying, “Man, you have GOT to read this!” I was fired up! I was hoping my best friend would be just as excited as I was. I wanted him to read it, so we could share our thoughts as we had when we read the Carlos Castaneda and J.R.R. Tolkien books in years past.

Let’s just say, things didn’t work out as I had hoped; my friend never read the book. My effort was a dismal failure. I found out sometime later that he showed it to his wife who thumbed through it and declared it to be the work of the devil. I was heartbroken and disappointed.

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Two Sides of the Same Coin

(Editor’s note: This article was first published in the 2021 June Tidings. We are re-posting it here in memory of the late David Linthicum.)

During a recent Urantia Association conference, a question was posed to those assembled: “How many have been successful in introducing The Urantia Book to family or friends?” The response was not surprising; a quick count revealed that only a smattering few raised their hands. For all those who have tried and failed to introduce the book to family and friends, you are in good company.  

Here we have in our hands a divine revelation, the fifth epochal revelation to mankind, the most amazing treasure since Jesus walked the Earth and yet many of our family and friends are not interested. I’m sure this is a reality for a great many of us and a disappointing one at that!

I’ve been a student of the book for 26 years, yet despite my best efforts to interest family and friends, for the most part they have shown only passive interest, perhaps tolerance or even appeasement would be more like it; none have taken the time to read the book. I was able to get a previous girlfriend to read the book several years ago and she became a dedicated student of the book. So, one person after 26 years of trying—not a great record!  

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Gallery for David

Please enjoy this selection of photos of the late David Linthicum depicting his participation in a variety of meetings, working groups and study groups.

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3rd European Urantia Conference in Spain

20 – 23 October 2022

Overcoming Materialism – Enlightening Europe

It is with great pleasure that we invite you to the 3rd European Urantia Conference to be held at the Sol Torremolinos Resort, Malaga, Spain 20 to 23 October 2022.

The Urantia Association of Spain, Urantia Association International, and the European Organizing Committee have been working hard to create this event in Southern Europe to unite our European Urantia Community once again for our next European Urantia Conference. 

Our last European Continental Conference was in Tallinn 2019 and attracted Urantia Book students from Europe and North America who all participated in that event. The aim of this coming conference is to discuss questions about Urantia Book readers working together to bring enlightenment to the European continent in the midst of a materialistic, secular world. Urantia Book readers from all around the globe are welcome to join us in this Continental Conference.

About the Theme:

According to the revelators, “…the worst of the materialistic age is over; the day of a better understanding is already beginning to dawn” (195:6.4, 2076.9), and “The world needs to see Jesus living again on earth in the experience of spirit-born mortals who effectively reveal the Master to all men.” (195:10.1, 2084.1).

But how can we leave materialism behind and be born of the spirit? How can we develop spiritually? Jesus himself said that “Self-mastery is the measure of man’s moral nature and the indicator of his spiritual development.” (143:2.3, 1609.4) Then learning the art of self-mastery seems fundamental to progress, both morally and spiritually. For this reason, at the 3rd European Urantia Conference, we will explore the various facets that seem most important for us to govern ourselves. With that intention, a series of workshops has been proposed under the common title of “The Route of Self-mastery.”

Considering the physical, mental, and spiritual parts of ourselves, we have designed the workshops with the intension of examining all the aspects and tools that allow us to master ourselves:

  • Self-mastery from the neurophysiological point of view (body): We are mortal beings who live our lives through bodies of flesh and blood and are still very conditioned by the material. This workshop will deal with aspects related to genetics and other physiological conditions, such as the parts that make up the brain and how they influence our behavior and its neuroplasticity, which offers the possibility of changing our behavior patterns.
  • Learning self-mastery and finding communication tools (mind): We will study what self-mastery is, go over human emotions and how to manage them, and discuss the tools we possess to communicate lovingly with our peers. In this regard, we have as a reference the life of Jesus of Nazareth, the perfect example of human self-control.
  • Spiritual Aids: We will look at what The Urantia Book tells us about meditation, prayer, and worship and about the benefits they bring to make us progress spiritually.

The purpose of the workshops is fundamentally practical, so that a brief theoretical approach will be made at the beginning. Then a series of group activities will be carried out in which the participation of the attendees is fundamental. It’s about sharing our efforts to improve in all aspects and master the art of self-control. The idea is that from this conference, we do not only take the good moments lived with other readers but also new tools and ideas that help us in our daily lives.

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Editor’s Note – May 2022

Welcome to the May 2022 edition of the Urantia Association’s Journal, a publication dedicated to the thoughts, observations, and experiences of Urantia Book students from around the world. Our contributors explore a wide range of topics, including personal stories of spiritual discovery, finding new meanings and values, and enhancing spiritual perception. Others write about cosmology, science, and ways to improve global civilization. Throughout all these articles, we see an extraordinary diversity of thought and a spirited unity of purpose.

Our first article, Legacy and Inspiration by Neal Waldrop, addresses the long-debated topic about how The Urantia Book should be disseminated in contemporary society. Neal argues that the evangelical, mass-marketing method of spreading the teachings is ineffective in the present age, primarily because it is difficult to attract people who are just not interested in spirituality, philosophy, or cosmology. He maintains that we should continue “to rely on person-to-person contact and other techniques that are consensual and informal.” Neal takes a unique perspective by contrasting the ways in which Christianity was forcibly spread in Europe during the early Middle Ages as opposed to more recent methods of evangelical work in Western civilization in the 19th and 20th centuries. He argues that neither method would work effectively today, hence the need to patiently continue with the consensual approach.

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Legacy and Inspiration

Almost everyone who encounters the fifth epochal revelation and who finds the teachings moving and inspiring, desires to share them with other human beings and help them experience the same spiritual benefits. This is entirely natural, and I reacted that way myself. On the other hand, immediate personal efforts along such lines almost invariably prove disappointing, and that was certainly what happened to me.

Over the next ten years or so, I eventually came to believe that the key criterion is whether or not the other person is relatively dissatisfied with his or her existing approaches to spirituality and the philosophic side of life — the question of whether or not he or she is really searching for more advanced levels of understanding and belief, even if the person concerned is not fully aware of this search and is not pursuing it consciously and deliberately.

To summarize these conclusions, I became convinced that if the other person was either fully satisfied with his or her existing approaches to spirituality and the philosophic side of life, or was just not very interested in these topics, then he or she would not be willing to devote the time, effort, and energy required to delve deeply into the teachings of The Urantia Book and eventually embrace them with conviction and commitment.

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The What Book?

Part I

Back in high school, I would have been voted “Most Likely to Volunteer for Alien Abduction.” Thus, I was immediately intrigued by a magazine ad I saw in 2009 for something called The Urantia Book.

The offer was for not just one, but two copies of the book, one indexed and the other not, and they were free. What could I lose? Of course, there was the possibility that along with the books would come a few survivalists to whisk me off to a commune in Idaho where I would be forced to hoard water, guns, and apocalypse-proof tins of food, but I suspected that if anyone actually did show up with my books, “he” or “she” would have come from somewhere a bit beyond Idaho. So, I took the plunge and went to the website pitching the book.

Soon a box arrived containing two copies of The Urantia Book. The unindexed version clocked in at 2,097 pages; the indexed version, set in a two-column format, covered 1,814 pages, followed by a 312-page Index. As a result, despite the tissue-thin paper, each volume must have weighed several pounds; not exactly light reading in every sense of the word.

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The Hazards of a Decimal Planet

We know from the revelators that our beloved blue planet is a decimal planet [58:0.1]. This means that on every tenth planet where the Life Carriers implant life, it undergoes new mechanical, chemical, and electrical mobilization patterns [57:8.8], that is, new life forms to develop possible improvements.

The Failures

Since we live in an experiential universe that is not yet perfect, failures in attempts to improve life are possible. Among the failures that have occurred on Urantia, we can mention certain bacteria and fungi. The former have changed since the earliest dawn of life and even show some degree of regression. In the case of fungi, many of them show a retrograde movement because they have lost their ability to produce chlorophyll and have become parasitic [65:2.3].

The amoeba and its protozoan cousins have remained almost unchanged since the beginning of life and are considered a failure by the Life Carriers for not having evolved [65:2.4].

Single-celled animals of primitive types associated themselves in colonies, such as the volvox, and later the jellyfish. Thousands of species appeared and disappeared during these ancient ages. All these specimens were nonprogressive. Even the fish family, animals from the evolutionary point of view, remained stationary [65:2.5].

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Why Participate in a Study Group?

As a student of The Urantia Book and longtime host and member of study groups, I have always been more than interested in their value to the mission of The Urantia Book. I have throughout the years organized many activities to promote not only the creation of new study groups, but also to explore their purpose in the plan to disseminate the teachings of the book. I also believe that study groups are an ideal place to create new kinds of spiritual leaders and teachers who are in harmony with the teachings of Jesus.

In this article, I list some of the reasons why it is important for each reader to participate in a study group and what I believe is their mission, philosophy, and purpose. Together, we will explore the question: “Why should I participate in a study group?”

This question is quite legitimate, and I try to give a reasonable answer supported by The Urantia Book, particularly by the life of Jesus. I also draw from the guidelines issued by The Urantia Book revelators as stated in the Publication Mandate. I will also share with you many testimonies of study group hosts and their members who were deeply touched by their participation in a study group.

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Why a Study Group?

This is a video presentation by Gaetan Charland, former President of Urantia Association International and former Chair of the Study Groups Committee of the ISB. He currently (2022) serves as an Associate Trustee of Urantia Foundation.

Gaetan’s passion has always been about the importance of the role study groups play in the mission of spreading the teachings of The Urantia Book. He also believes that the study group is a good environment for the development of teachers and leaders who can assist others in understanding the concepts in the book.

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Brazil Urantia Association

The Urantia Association of Brazil (UAB) was established as a National Association of Urantia Association International in 2003. It is one of the largest associations with a total of 493 members, 120 of whom have read the book in its entirety. All the activities of our association during the 2020/2021 biennium was guided by a strategic plan that was established at the beginning of 2020 to provide direction and structure for our association.​ In this way, we established and implemented well-defined objectives and followed up with weekly meetings of the board to assess the progress of activities.​

In general, our overarching goal is to become more proactive in our work of spreading the Urantia revelation in Brazil and ​to become better acquainted with Urantia Book students of in our region. We want to become more efficient in distributing The Urantia Book and to provide effective communication channels so that students of the book can find one another for study and socializing purposes.

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Senegal Urantia Association

The Progressive Divine Wisdom Group around its founder in 1986

Senegal was chartered as a National Association of Urantia Association International in 2001 under the name of “Senegalese Association of Research and Studies.” During the course of 2021, we carried out activities in relation to the teachings of The Urantia Book in the form of the “Progressive Divine Wisdom Group” (PDWG).

Our approach consists in establishing a progressive program of personal assimilation of the concepts of The Urantia Book. This program is structured in the form of instruction by sharing experiences and spiritual activities through a Progressive Divine Wisdom education. It is intended for readers of The Urantia Book and for all seekers of Truth and God, whatever their journey.

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Australia & New Zealand Urantia Association

The Australia & New Zealand Urantia Association (ANZURA) was first chartered as a National Association in 1994 and was one of the pioneer non-American associations to join the then new Urantia Association International that has always supported and worked closely with Urantia Foundation. (Many of ANZURA’s founding members had been members-at-large of the former Urantia Brotherhood.)  

Study Groups
Since the Covid pandemic stimulated the explosion of Zoom internet conferencing technology, many readers who were previously unable to experience a study group now have the opportunity to reap the benefits of studying and socialising with fellow readers. Needless to say, study group attendance has grown rapidly in the last couple of years.

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Guatemala Urantia Association

Guatemala Urantia Association was chartered as a Local Association of Urantia Association International in 2021. The years 2020 and 2021 were atypical years for the Guatemala Urantia Association. During the first four months, the entire population was subject to mandatory confinement in their homes. We could only leave our homes for those services essential to life and food supply. Consequently, work was done at home, and part-time jobs, which are commercial activities for most of the population, reported heavy losses. As an economic fact, experts in the sector consider that part-time jobs account for seventy percent of Guatemala’s economic activities, so there was an increase in unemployment. It is important to mention this because the main efforts of Guatemalans have been oriented towards the survival of their families and the fulfillment of their individual obligations. 

For the activities of dissemination and teaching, there has been goodwill on the part of the Guatemala members who sent out ten Urantia books by private mail and invited people to join study activities using social media and Zoom software. The activity of sharing the teachings via social networks has not diminished in intensity and it helps to bring readers together in Guatemala. 

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GLMUA – New Membership Invitation

Greater Lake Michigan Urantia Association (GLMUA) is a Local Association of the United States Urantia Association (UAUS). Recently we hosted a New Membership Invitation Meeting and as a result, we are now welcoming two new people into our ranks. For organizations like the many Urantia associations around the world that make participation in events open to all, it is difficult to express the benefits of membership. This meeting gave GLMUA an opportunity to pointedly convey who we are, what our goals are, and how it serves the individual and the community when people become members.

This meeting has been a long-time coming. As president, I’ve had it on my mind for a couple of years but wanted to build up to it with a record of maintaining our regular activities (planning various gatherings throughout the year) while also taking on some unique activities which grab people’s attention and get them excited. GLMUA members worked together to give a talk at a Urantiathon and a group was formed to support people in reaching their personal goals. This build-up paid off, as one of the new members stated that the reason why he was joining, even though he is a self-professed non-joiner, is because of how active we have been.

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Belgium-Francophone Urantia Association

ABFU

The Belgium-Francophone Urantia Association (ABFU) was charted as a Local Association of Urantia Association International in 2006. For 40 years, study groups were initiated mainly by one man: François Dupont. As of 2006, the groups were gradually overseen by the new President, Jean Annet.

We organize study groups in different cities, participate in expos and fairs, and give lectures in both public and private places so that hundreds of people may hear about The Urantia Book in French-speaking Belgium.

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