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UrantiaL072393Thru091493TM_Discussion-Part7


THE URANTIAL ARCHIVE

Consisting of 10 Parts

From December 14,1992 Through February25, 1994




23 Jul 1993     Dan Massey      Inspired speculation or blasphemy?

Subject: Inspired speculation or blasphemy?


 Thea:  


 Thanks for your observations on my observations. As you can see, I am quite unenthusiastic about the TM. On the other hand, in spite of much haranguing, I have not become convinced that it is a bad thing. I view it as being at the level of "white noise". I have a much more negative attitude, which I have not posted here, about the role the phenomenon has assumed in SOME (not all, have no idea how many) people's spiritual viewpoints and lives.


 The HAM performance in LA, on internal evidence, seemed to be consciously and deliberately fraudulent, but I have enough sense to realize that what people (including the Woods Cross folks) experience in intimate group settings could be very different from what happened there. I have long believed that revelatory experience is an ontological reality which cannot be flash-frozen or freeze-dried to reconstitute for a more opportune or politically advantageous occasion.

24 Jul 1993     Dennis Shields      Heard melodies are sweet, but

Subject: Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard Are sweeter.


 Aloha


 The exchanges of the last week or so have spawned a side topic that is really interesting to me. In questioning Sonny regarding his personal experiences as a TR and what was the mechanism of this experience for him, He remarked that after being in the stillness he *saw a concept* and . I had to stop him at this point and ask him just what he meant by *seeing* a concept. This led to a discussion bringing up such ideas as the chain of events of concept sponsoring sub vocalization which in turn sponsors vocalization.


 This led in turn to further speculation as to whether we perceive visual colors the same that is we may agree as to a color being red but is the red shade that I see in my minds eye the same shade that another would see in their mind. It being seemingly impossible to do side by side comparisons it is also impossible to side by side comparison any individuals experience with the TM, as well as the impossibility of knowing what is another persons thought pattern or at what level of awareness of concept, sub vocalization, or vocalization that any individual mentally dwells.


 Because we use these thought symbols we call words so ubiquitously we lose sight of the fact that words are an invention of thought that thought uses to express itself.


 Into these contemplation's enter the post from Thea


 >* I think in concepts more now than in words. (I will >argue wildly with the theoretical position that says >thinking requires words because as a thinker, artist > and musician, I work in concepts all the time; >granted, it may have required the language skills >initially...) *


 As a musician this intrigues me also as it gets to the heart of the questions I initially asked of the TM regarding the language of music. If words are sounds representing thought symbols what concepts are represented by musical phrases? (being taught that Harmony is the speech of Paradise [Havona being paradisical] and music is the language of men angles and spirits).


 When a painter paints a canvass does that painter first construct a thousand words before they dips a brush?


 Is it words or is it an image.


 Then it struck me that imagination could be construed as a nation of images


 Emagi the nation


 ah the notion!!


 The book tells us of the complete lack of certain types of imagination among the apostles (sorta a low credit rating at the first bank of Emagi)


 I realize Im sorta philosophically re inventing the wheel. Thought and its ramifications have been thought of since man first thunk



26 Jul 1993     Ron Harrell        Iam with the Teaching Mission

Subject: Iam with the Teaching Mission in Tallahassee. Fred suggestedI get on your mailing list. My address is ronh@freenetfsu.edu. thanks, ronh



27 Jul 1993     David Kantor      Some Comments

Subject: Some Comments


Thea, did you think that Fred Harris' last post about the inevitability and even necessity of accepting error was a cogent, astute set of ideas representative of that which might be indited by a Melchizedek? In my view, he posts an ignorant blend of truth and error bordering on real evil which is in direct conflict with a stated purpose of epochal revelation -- "the authoritative elimination of error." Recall also that one of the primary tasks the ascencion career is developing the ability to discern subtle differences between truth and error. I am gathering materials to continue a deeper look at the spirit of truth (most of which I just trashed and must reconstruct) per our previous posts.


 


 Thank you for posting the Woods Cross material. It should now be easy for any serious student of The Urantia Book to see what a sophistic fantasy their scene is, inextricably weaving a gordian knot of truth and error based on superficially understood concepts from the UB, and creating a social identity for themselves in the act of pawning it off on naive UB readers.


 I would consider these folks to be self-deceived fools if it were not for the "primary research" which Byron commended to me. I have spent a considerable amount of time in the past few months studying transcripts from a variety of sources and looking into the backgrounds of T/R's and TM spokespersons. While it is obvious to me that the transcripts do not come from the same source as The Urantia Book, the real eye-opener was the realization that the common denominator amongst T/R's was two things: Severe relationship trauma (often in early childhood) and long-term drug use (not always both occurring in the same individual although the data seems to show that the latter can result in the former), the former manifesting in adult life as difficulty or inability to sustain significant long-term intimate relationships with other individuals. While there may be exceptions to this, the statistical occurrance of these elements is far into the range of what would have to be considered "extremely significant" given their predominance in the sample I've looked at. (Although I suspect that in the Woods Cross situation the appearance of Ham on the planet may have been authorized by the presence of chlorinated hydrocarbons and organic solvents contained in dry cleaning solutions). Check it out for yourselves if you're interested. There are far more individuals out there claiming to be T/R's than I've been able to find out about; perhaps I am looking at a skewed sample.


 


 I am beginning to view channeling phenomena in general as kind of a post-traumatic response to relationship disorders. I feel that I have enough data on this for at least a master's thesis. A particularly poignant indicator for me is the predominance of messages and attitudes portrayed in the transcripts (almost universal in all channeling phenomenon) which appear as psychological complements to sustained childhood trauma -- the constant exhortation and description of how to relate in safe, non-traumatic ways to other individuals. (Which, in and of itself is not a bad set of guidelines). Of particular interest to me has been the predominance of such terms as "My dear daughter", "My beloved child", "Dear Ones", "Beloved children," "Beloved sons," and the frequent occurrance of the kind of exhortations that would have been missing from traumatic childhoods -- "we respect you", "we honor your choices in this matter", "you are very dear to us," etc. Regardless of statements contained in most channeling literature to the opposite, the channeler almost invariably creates a position of power for him/herself vis-a-vis the community of followers. This sometimes takes the form of blatant authoritarian power or may be a more subtle assumption of power in providing access to God for the members of the community. The fact remains that power and defined relationship are the primary social result of every occurrance of channeling that I have been able to find and study.


 This is particularly to be decried amongst readers of The Urantia Book. For what appears to me as the first time in history, we have gotten a major revelation without the trappings (yet) of a priesthood or a personality cult built around the prophet through whom the revelation came. Think about this! This is unprecedented and gives us a remarkable degree of freedom in pursuing our religious and spiritual lives. And yet here we have the TM adherents attempting to construct just such an authoritative interface with the source of the revelation as described in The Urantia Book -- take a look folks, it's all there and much of it has been posted hereon.


 I would also question the long-term servicability of using spiritual methods for the solution of psycho/social problems; this makes no more sense to me than the attempted application of spiritual principles to the solution of physical problems as the Christian Scientists attempt to do.


 Oh well, my view only; and my mind is so twisted that I'm the only one I know who immediately recognized the mathematician/scientist in "Jurasic Park" as none other than -- BUCKAROO BONZAI!!! Complete with the same ridiculous glasses he wore in "The Adventures of Buckaroo Bonzai Across the Eighth Dimension." This was the only redeeming feature of JP, a piece of Hollywood trash as far as I was concerned. The slow camera pan across all the sweat shirts and lunch boxes (the same junk that Spielberg et al are selling in a shop near you) in the gift shop at the park was the most crass bit of marketing and audience exploitation yet to appear in film. Give me a break!


 Hang on folks; the illusionists and exploiters are all around us like so many hawkers at a cosmic carnival and the con games and scams proliferate on material, intellectual and spiritual levels. But with the masterpiece of revelatory literature which is The Urantia Book available for our exploration, I can't fully appreciate why anyone would be drawn to a cheap derivative, no matter how much pleasure or affirmation they got from it.


 

27 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       My goodness, David K!

Subject: My goodness, David K! In-Reply-To: [9307271747.AA00890@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dear David K.,


 You wrote the following:


 


 > Thea, I'm looking forward to receiving your tape. I was


 Indeed: and I am interested in your getting it! Please repost your address to me personally or on here and I will send it right away. Your address is lost in a very dead HD!


 > Where's VanEL when we need him/her/it? > Indeed!!


 > Thea, did you think that Fred Harris' last post about the > inevitability and even necessity of accepting error was a > cogent, astute set of ideas representative of that which > might be indited by a Melchizedek? In my view, he posts an


 My viewpoint on this is coming from a different slant. I see the TM as part of the fifth epochal revelatory process, but I do not see the transcripts themselves as revelatory in the sense that you appear to be expecting. I do not think they are extensions of the UB. I think they are collaberations and unpolished the way the UB required. I also think that as religious documents, they can be subjected to the same scrutiny that the documents of other religions would be. Would you reject the truths of Buddhism and all Buddhists because of human admixture? Our own UB tells us not to do so, yet you just don't seem to hear this. I would counsel you to take the truth contained, David, and let the rest be. It is becoming evident that there is something about the TM that you fear, perhaps personally. Maybe you can explain that further so I can understand better what the real issues are for you. The ones that go beyond the surfaces in which you sometimes deal. You are not a superficial person and I take you seriously and respect and care for you. But there is something here that you are trying to get at that I just don't find clearly enough stated to fully understand. I expect you feel the same way about some of the rest of us. A little rule of thumb you might want to try applying... Pretend that the TM is Buddhism, or Jainism, or any other religion mentioned in the UB and ask if your reactions would be the same. If not, why not?! I don't think you want to put yourself in the position of Revelatory Policeman, do you? There is just an overtone of desire to control here that really does disturb and concern me from time to time. I apologize for saying this, because I really do care about you and appreciate much about you, but I really think it needs saying.


 > Dennis > You might contact Mark and ask him about it. I would expect > him to have had access to better information than I. Perhaps > he could clarify his views and give some examples of > individuals who had experiences of the nature he describes. > I don't know what sort of personal relationships he had with > members of the contact commission. I did make some phone


 Good idea!


 > > Thank you for posting the Woods Cross material. It should > now be easy for any serious student of The Urantia Book to > see what a sophistic fantasy their scene is, inextricably > weaving a gordian knot of truth and error based on > superficially understood concepts from the UB, and creating a > social identity for themselves in the act of pawning it off > on naive UB readers. > David, this is not worthy of you. It is openly snotty and not in the spirit of the very UB that you say you are so devoted to. I do not understand this approach from one who appears to say that he is Jesusonian in his goals if not his attainment. I am not asking you to change your opinion in this instance but perhaps to phrase it in a less inflamatory way? (This is pretty much pure flaming!) How 'bout it?


 


 > was the realization that the common denominator amongst T/R's > was two things: Severe relationship trauma (often in early > childhood) and long-term drug use (not always both occurring > in the same individual although the data seems to show that > the latter can result in the former), the former manifesting > in adult life as difficulty or inability to sustain > significant long-term intimate relationships with other > individuals. While there may be exceptions to this, the > statistical occurrance of these elements is far into the > range of what would have to be considered "extremely > significant" given their predominance in the sample I've


 What makes this particular form of pseudo statistical analysis so laughable is not merely the size of the sample . I dare you, David, to take the same look at the general readership of the UB and I posit that you will find the readership of the UB in general contains a preponderance of these characteristics. In the first place, dysfunction is widespread enough in our society that it is anything but uncommon. In the second place, those who have suffered through such pains are often seekers of truth with a great deal of love and empathy for others. It can be argued that most of our society today has at least the characteristic of childhood trauma. The drug use is often a by product of trying to cope with that trauma. Therefore, we must address the ills of our culture, which means helping people to recover from those early ills (which Jesus himself discusses in the UB) so that they can be fully functioning individuals. I believe that this is one of the functions of the mansions worlds - to address the results of such trauma. It is widespread, David. I would take your comments as a cheapshot (which it was) if it were not so laughable since you refer to what I consider to be a pretty large chunk of our population from a statistical standpoint. I presume you do not live in a vacuum there wherever you live...


 Yes, I am a TR who falls into those catagories, though my childhood traumas were nowhere near as severe as those of many friends who have been abused rather severely. (You will have personal friends who have been abused and have probably never told you. Most of us do.) I was a drug user. I have not used drugs since 1980 and have come to believe, unlike some of my brothers and sisters whom I still hold dear, that it was an addiction that I used to try to deal with the pain from my past. Some of your implications in these remarks are pretty tacky and ugly, David. And terribly self-righteous sounding. You seem to be implying that people who have had childhood traumas and experienced drug use are unfit, are incapable of having changed and coming to a position where they can use their past struggles to help their brothers and sisters. You may have revealed some of your own difficulties here more than anywhere else. Jesus was known for some of his associations with less than perfect people. Do you think that prostitutes may have fallen into a catagory of having been abused early on, even in Jesus' time? Yet he associated with them and made one a teacher. David, David, dear man! What are you *doing* here? Think, man!


 


 > > > I am beginning to view channeling phenomena in general as > kind of a post-traumatic response to relationship disorders. > I feel that I have enough data on this for at least a > master's thesis. A particularly poignant indicator for me is


 I am wondering if someone isn't telling you this in order to "help" you deal with your own trauma re FOG.


 > predominance of such terms as "My dear daughter", "My beloved > child", "Dear Ones", "Beloved children," "Beloved sons," and > the frequent occurrance of the kind of exhortations that > would have been missing from traumatic childhoods -- "we > respect you", "we honor your choices in this matter", "you > are very dear to us," etc. Regardless of statements > contained in most channeling literature to the opposite, the > channeler almost invariably creates a position of power for > him/herself vis-a-vis the community of followers. This


 So you are saying that you created a position of power for yourself? I see people fearing this power which few TRs I know have any interest in. But I do not see many TRs doing it. I will not lie. There are some. And there are some things that are in transcripts which I consider false. Mostly negative in tone. But many of us are rather allergic to power positions which makes us tryto bend over backwards to not create such a situation. I refuse to make any decisions for my group or members in my group and actuallytake less of a leadership role than I might do were I not a TR. And my group has five or six TRs anyway, none of whom are considered sacred cows bythe group members. And do you believe that the teachers and others would refer to us in less than loving words? That this is bad? That this incredible love and grace that they show for us is corrupt by virtue of their using loving words? David, again, what are you saying?! Think, man! That our insanity makes us create loving words? Boy, this is just weirder and weirder.


 > construct just such an authoritative interface with the > source of the revelation as described in The Urantia Book -- > take a look folks, it's all there and much of it has been > posted hereon. > Since you are free to participate or not, what makes it authoritative? It has been stated and restated that the TM is for those who are interested and not to be sought by all. It is not an elite path, merely *a* path. The authority that I see are those who would seek to prevent those of us who wish to follow this path from so doing. It frankly is beginning to remind me of a time about 2000 years ago. I wonder if this happens anytime people dare to pursue to the best of their ability the religion of Jesus.


 > I would also question the long-term servicability of using > spiritual methods for the solution of psycho/social problems; > this makes no more sense to me than the attempted application > of spiritual principles to the solution of physical problems > as the Christian Scientists attempt to do.


 David, there is no solution to the psycho/social problems we face that does not include and is not based on spiritual solitions. To equate it with the CHristian Science approach is simply not accurate. THe solution to most earthly problems lies in the realization that we are faith children of a loving Father and all of the people on the planet are our brothers and sisters. We have perhaps heard these words so long that we forget that they are not easy to actually live and put into practice. It means that we allow ourselves to know our value as a child of the Father, that we are truly and dearly loved, that we are each an irreplaceable part of the Supreme. It means looking at, learning to understand and love and forgive our brothers and sisters, seeing that each of them, too, is an equally loved child of that same Father. To give this lip service is easy. TO actually put it into practice and live it is nothing short of revolutionary. It still has not been widely done. And it is not at all easy. It is, however, the most gratifying activity possible. And in this pursuit lies the solution to our psycho/social problems, David. It is this pursuit that allows one to go on loving even when one is faced with a lot of unlovingness. I am not ashamed of having grown up with pain. I am not ashamed of having made mistakes in my life. Through my relationship with my loving Father in heaven, with my adjuster, and with Michael, I am able to overcome much of what I have lived through and to face things I never knew I could face. Whenever I am called to service, I try to show mercy, knowing how it once was for me. The Father does not ask that we be perfect, but that our motivations be sincere.


 > > literature which is The Urantia Book available for our > exploration, I can't fully appreciate why anyone would be > drawn to a cheap derivative, no matter how much pleasure or > affirmation they got from it.


 David, I am trying as hard as I can to be tolerant in the face of your ridicule.


 I will probably not use this method of response again; it generates too many bytes (quoting another's message) but in this instance, there was much I wished to reply to. In a time soon to come, I will cease spending energy with you on this, David. I am beginning to question your sincerity as for coming at the truth, or at the very least your sincerity in terms of tolerance. As a 23 year reader and believer of the UB, I do not think that I feel any less strongly that you are not what I would want to represent the UB than you feel that I am not what you would wish to represent it. Perhaps it is best if we simply leave it there. I think that we have many more important things to do on this list. In that, perhaps I am mistaken. I would like to see us attempt to redefine what we wish Urantial to become. I am willing to abide by the general consensus. I can tell you that this, including my own responses above, is NOT what I want to see it become. I feel like I am beginning to fall into the catagory of resisting evil. And I want to cease that; among other things, it is energy wasted that can be put to good use. I am deeply disappointed in your responses, David, not because of you disagree about the TM but because you show such an unloving and intolerant attitude about it. I will try not to be snared into any of these useless hashings over again, but some of your remarks in this last post were so, what else can I say but tacky, that I, being the human person that I am, got snared.


 Other Logons here, please forgive my own tirade. Sometimes it is just more than I can understand that we who read this wonderful book cannot somehow manage to live together in more harmony despite our diversity. I expect that I have contributed my share to the difficulty by stating my own beliefs. Nevertheless, I would hope that we can redefine ourselves and carry on in love and friendship, not expecting to agree on everything, and being willing to examine our differences with an eye to learning from each other, and not simply attempting to impress our own ways on others. If I had my way, we would all come together and discuss this, discuss what we want to do here, how we want to do it, perhaps discuss some extremely basic "ground rules" of mutual respect. But perhaps even that is too authoritarian; I do not know. I only know that I am saddened for the moment. Yet I do love this place and the people here and am unwilling to give it up!


 Feedback, please...


 With as much sincerity as I can muster,



27 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: My goodness, David K!

Subject: Re: My goodness, David K! In-Reply-To: [9307272013.AA03625@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Ah, yes. One more thing for the record, just to demonstrate more fully that I am fully capable of being defensive. In terms of long term relationships... I have been married for over 20 years and have a large number of very long term and close friendships, David. Just thought you might like to know... But I daresay, again, that such trouble with long term relationships is more the norm than the deviation in our culture at large, and even perhaps in general UB readership, perhaps because of same.


 It is a part of our current cultural dysfunction.


 I am really hoping to shut up on this now. At least for some time to come.


 Sigh



27 Jul 1993     Dan Massey      Travelling North

Subject: Travelling North


 Seriously, David, I want to thank you for your (once again) clear presentation of the quality and content issues in the TM material. In the past couple of months several people who should be intelligent enough to know better have published some pretty disingenuous endorsements of the material and the process. While my own views are not developed enough to allow me to endorse your particular theory about the origin of the phenomenon in childhood emotional trauma and drug use, I think your critique of quality and content is right on, and I share your concerns about the tendency of naive listeners to elevate the T/Rs into a priesthood role. That is, after all, what the claim of the TM is--to establish a priesthood for the Urantia movement. While I pray earnestly for the progressive and merciful enlightenment of souls so lost and misguided as to desire this eventuality, I also respect their absolute right to make this choice. I do not, however, think they should be removed from objective criticism when they seek to foist their delusions on others, either as missionaries or as participants in an organization.


 

27 Jul 1993     Karen Day       Reply re David and Thea on

Subject: Reply re David and Thea on


 Subject: Time:3:19 PM OFFICE MEMO Reply re David and Thea on TM Date:7/27/93 7/27/93


 I am hesitant to reply to the last postings of David K. and Thea on the Teaching Mission etc. but here goes anyway.


 Thea, I knew you would give a reply to David that would say everything I was thinking when I felt unable to express my own voice so completely as you were able to.


 David, just for the stats, I am a T/R (I transmit), I had a very happy childhood, I have had and continue to have very good relationships with my family members and friends, and I don't do drugs. This is not to say that my life has proceeded without problems-- I am divorced, but am currently very happily re-married-- but I feel good about who I am today and what I've accomplished so far, and a lot of that has to do with my commitment to God and his will. A consensus of peers and psychologists would consider me "normal", although I dislike categorizing people like that because we all have had our problems, some more extreme than others, and we are all striving to make forward progress, at some level or another.


 I agree with Thea about the high percentage of people who are "dysfunctional" in the Urantia movement. I, too, have noticed this, and this seems logical because it's often the people who have struggled and have faced critical times in their lives who turn to God. Some of these people are my very best friends and they bring a greater depth of understanding to life than many who have had an easier go of it. I have a great respect for people who have experienced tougher times than I and have learned to love others more greatly for it.


 I don't really wish to take a position of defending the TM and its followers, as I try to respect people's opinions. But I do feel that I should speak up for people who I are being inappropriately judged, imo, such as the Woods Cross group. I know Todd and John Blackburn personally and have the greatest respect for them. They are deeply spiritual people, sincere and loving, as well as intelligent and extremely "normal", well-balanced fellows, who are also readers of the UB and dedicated to seeking truth and God. I believe that the Woods Cross group have been sincere participants in the TM. Our Naperville group has been in contact with Thern Blackburn (Todd and John's father) and the Woods Cross group for over a year now as we have watched the TM unfold. We have shared our questions and concerns about this phenomena, we have examined it, and we have chosen to follow it because of the inner sense of truth to it.


 I don't wish to convince anyone that the TM is real and they should get on the bandwagon. I only wish to state my own convictions on this as a sharing of faith and to show my support for those who are pursuing the Teaching Mission and seeking for the truth in it as I am.


 Respectfully, Karen



27 Jul 1993     Dan Massey      Woods Cross materials; Thea an

Subject: Woods Cross materials; Thea and David


 Colleages,


 Just as I was about to log off, here comes Thea's response to David's posting. Oh, well...


 Thea,


 Thank you for speaking so freely about your feelings on this matter. There is a certain quality of talking to an interactive machine that will deliver your text later that, I feel, leads us to write with a degree of candor that would be uncomfortable in a face to face discussion. Although the Book warns us that most people desire to be told the truth but do not wish for people to actually tell them what they are thinking (about them) without filtering. For some reason, we tend to put these conventions of interaction aside when writing here. Tricky.


 For example, from your postings here I know you are thoughtful and intelligent and believe at least some of the TM doctrine. As a fellow indwelt mortal, I respect your right to hold any belief that you find attractive. I also respect your right to talk about those beliefs to your heart's content, since I am always able to type "^C rmm" and go on to something else if I am not interested. On the other hand, I reserve the right to hold my own opinions about the validity of your beliefs and to talk about those opinions, especially in the forum in which you publish them yourself. There are, however, opinions that might be better left unsaid, and I have dutifully refrained from saying them in this forum because I did not think the heavy mixture of TM followers could bear to hear them. In other words, it would not be useful to the dialog which is occurring. It may appear that I have said a lot of really negative things (and I have), but I have stayed away from theorizing publicly about what is going on between people in the TM and their adjusters, for example. (Don't leap to the conclusion that if I did say something about it, it would be horrible...)


 Woods Cross Material:


 Several times on Urantial I have encountered claims that the Woods Cross material is of uniformly high spiritual character or is otherwise excellent as representative TM transcripts. I found this in postings from Bob Slagle and now in several more recent postings (including those quoting Thern, who is hardly a disinterested observer). I feel it is very important to set the record straight in this matter, since many people have come to the TM late in the game and received copies of the Woods Cross material that is anything but authentic.


 The original Woods Cross transcripts produced, I believe, about two years ago (?) were largely taken up with personal issues of individual members of the group, medical advice, and concern about medical issues relating to Michael Landon and Vince Ventola. The TEACHING part of the transcripts was quite minimal in all cases.


 Subsequently, some quite literate exponents of the TM cause, in particular, I believe, Duane Faw, undertook a major redaction of the Woods Cross material, excising vast amounts of wandering hesitation and materialistic posturing, and distilling the best, purest, and highest ideas for public consumption. I believe Duane also fed this edited material back to Woods Cross, so that the nature of the channel was "tuned" by examination of "acceptable" output. Certainly Duane visited and consulted with Thern and "Rebecca" on innumerable occasions and was a major force in trying to clothe this material with the garments of acceptability.


 The Woods Cross material is anything but spontaneous. Although not necessarily an intentional fraud, it is the product of careful editing, consultation with a believer in the TM who also claimed to be a knowledgeable student of the Book, and systematic active promotion among Book readers generally not familiar enough with the text of the Book to refute the sophistries of its marketers.


 Believe whatever you want to about the product of Woods Cross. But don't assume that people associated with the development and marketing of this product aren't lying to you about it.


 Faithfully...


 ...Dan Massey




27 Jul 1993     Pj Seremjian       reading the book vs. living th

Subject: reading the book vs. living the book


 Thea and David, I'd like to put my two cents in.


 Thea, you can sure take a punch! You are truly a class act. David, the meanness in your response to Thea makes me wonder if you have ever read the Urantia Book! How could you hold this book near and dear to your heart and trash someone's feelings as you have just done? I can't speak for Thea, but my feelings are hurt FOR her!!!! Is the Book just a concatenation of factual material for you? Didn't any of the MEANING of it sink in? I respect your right to your own opinion, as I'm sure everyone here does, but you should re-read your replies before you post them! What could you possibly gain by being a bully? Does it make you feel good in some perverted way?? I feel sorry for you, that you have digested the Book, but have failed to gain sustenance from it. That is so sad.


 


 Voting for peace


 

27 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       One for Dan et al

Subject: One for Dan et al In-Reply-To: [9307272252.AA06965@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dear Dan,


 Thanks for your post. You point out the nature of being on-line and how we tend to be more candid here. I agree. One thing that I did when I first got a modem was to log onto a local BBS and play a teen guy called Rat Brat and get a lot of flaming out of my system. It was great fun and the kids were upset when they found out I wasn't a kid after all. I learned a lot from the experience and other time spend on-line. I think that we can learn to moderate our tone, however, and that it is as necessary here as anywhere else to respond with respect. My argument remains not that I want you guys to agree about the teaching mission. To be honest, I don't really care that much if you do or not. But there are two things I do care about. One is that the discussion is relatively civil, as your most recent post is, and the other that we take each other to task for the real issues, which are not that kindly words used in transmissions reveal some sordid (hehe) aberration in a TR or that all TRs must be power hungry (I share your concerns that the naive do tend to put TRs in a position of power; it is amazing how many people want to be told what to do.


 Personally I do everything I can to see that this doesn't happen. It certainly has happened other places in the Urantia movement and is never healthy. I don't think such things are limited to the TM.) About whether the TM has set itself up as a priesthood for the Urantia movement... as to that one, if the TM had said any such thing in my hearing I would have rejected either the TM or the person who said/ transmitted it. Where did you get that particular piece of info? These ARE things I would like to discuss. For one thing, I also do not believe that all the Woods Cross material is uniformly high quality. I do not think that all of our material in my group is uniformly high quality, including my own transmissions. Because I do not believe that these transmissions are "addendum" to the UB, but more like the epistles from the gospels, complete with the same sort of errors, perhaps, that variability doesn't bother me. I am unconcerned with authority and do not believe what is occurring to speak with the kind of authority that some have apparently believed to be the case. I believe that this TM is Michael's will, but when he wants to impress it with authority, I expect we will all know it for certain, each and every one of us. His bestowal on this planet was not authoritative in tone, so I would not necessarily expect other work he might wish to do for Urantia to be so.


 If you guys are going to keep discussing some of these aspects with even a veneer of solid methods of scrutiny, then I would like to hear more quotes and would perhaps be personally interested in responding. If I felt that I was respected and not considered some rabid nut case! :) I say this with a certain amount of humor, actually, because I know there are moments when we probably all think we are all nutcases to be bandying all of this about in any event. I have spent enough time in and out of psychology from both sides of the fence, so to speak, to have a clue or two about my own psychology, and perhaps on occasion that of others. I also have foreborne from using everything in my arsenal, and I intend to continue to do so. That is because I do not see this as some sort of holy war. I did not actually feel personally attacked by David. I don't think he intended his material as a personal attack on me, either. He said what he thought and felt, and I think it was honest. And it also made him vulnerable to the assessments of others, which he obviously has the courage to do. This is one of the many things about him that I admire and respect, even when I think he goes too far. I do know that I can trust him to say what he thinks. I think it is more that I am shocked at how judgmental he is about the TM not based on sound and well-researched scrutiny (which requires that we see the research, are able to examine his data-bases, his statistical samples, his data collection methods, his secondary sources and their reliability, etc, etc... I need not say this to you; you understand, I am sure.) but based on his feelings. I have far less trouble with his thoughts than with his feelings. And yet I am not one to want to suppress feelings. I think one of the problems that comes up here, if I can find a way to clearly refer to it, is that the feelings are focussed on blaming others instead of being used to focus on self-mastery. If that is too vague, I will clarify. I have found that my feelings are more effectively heard when I focus on my responses and what they mean in terms of my own psychology than when I blame my feelings on the other guy and his behaviors etc. As must be evident, I do not always succeed along these lines, nevertheless, I think it is something that we could all benefit from paying a touch more attention to. Am I being too vague here?


 So to reiterate, I would rather see clear, documented arguments that we can all discuss (preferably not as byte-rich as my recent efforts hereon) and feelings about personal reactions rather than things thrown every which way and feelings that call others' sanity et al into question. And I need to pay attention to this myself; I do not exclude myself from this analysis. I am not asking for a return to the great quotes war, though I do think we sometimes do not get into a discussion of meanings as well and thoroughly as we might, a thing which I think could teach us all a lot.


 Perhaps there is no tactful way to consider TRs' behavior a result of childhood damage, relationship trauma, and drug use. And I realize that David having been a TR was likely putting himself somehow in that same catagory, which must be painful for him. But I am not sure that we need to forever find reasons for what our brothers and sisters do and believe with which we do not agree that consist in calling their integrity and sanity into question. Frankly, I try to resist doing the reverse. Or even thinking it. Sometimes, it is rather difficult.


 There are some issues here about the TM that I find inaccurate that some of you persist in maintaining that the TM teaches/ believes/ states. Because there is no such thing as a central TM authority, it is hard to confront those clearly. This is part of why I would like to know the quotes for example that maintain that the TM is authoritatively declaring itself the priesthood of the Urantia movement, because I may be as willing to reject such a thing as any of the rest of you on here.


 Enough, I will cease.


 I appreciate your attempts to be balanced in tone, Dan.



28 Jul 1993     Dennis Shields      What is sauce for the Goose is

Subject: What is sauce for the Goose is gravy for the Gander


 Aloha Some questions to David K re: latest post


 In your references to the common denominator of the TM as being Severe relationship trauma and long term drug use does this apply to you personally?


 You and Sara were TRs for FOG do you and Sara have a history of child hood trauma?


 Do you and Sara have a history of long term drug usage? What drugs?


 In the FOG experience did you and Sara become the priest class of the FOG group?


 How long have you been married? How long has Sara been married?


 Do the two of you have histories of not sustaining long term relationships?


 In your TR experience did you and Sara become centers of attention, centers of power?


 I ask these questions not to attack you, but as having had years of sales experience, my first reaction when encountering a glittering generality is to question it. Since you have made these rather definitive statements regarding the TRs and knowing that you two folks were TRs in the FOG events I wonder if you are also making these categorizations and characterizations about yourself? Would you make them of Sara? Aloha



28 Jul 1993     John Milam       Statistics in David K.'s post

Subject: Statistics in David K.'s post


 I want to step in here on one thing. Though I have not formed an opinion about the TM phenomena, I am seriously reading transcripts and being open - just as I was open to reading ACIM, Cayce, and other channeled material. (I wonder what we would have said if Cayce had mentioned the UB?)


 Anyway, my point is for you, David. In some ways, you seem to be straddling two opposing paradigms. Part of you is heavily influenced by functionalist, nomothetic, positivist, determinist sociology. This is the part of you which keeps trying to rationalize the TM transcripts and phenomena within the UB perspective. Another part of you is sensitive to subjective social science, to the value of ethnography, and to the recognition that spiritual development cannot be quantified.


 Either keep up the positivist charge and drop quasi-naturalistic inquiry, or abandon metaphors about science and allow the human, unknowable patterns to be expressed only as metaphors of what could possibly be going on.


 As some whose professional life is spent with causal models and statistics, I have to object to your presentation of an empirically-based theory of T/R's. This was a cheap shot, and I am sure you are well acquainted with much better scientific techniques. Standard functionalist sociology would not allow me to make conclusions based on anything other than the most sound data. You are venting - that is okay since it is obviously what you feel - but call it that, don't pretend that it is statistical evidence.


 I think a more worthy project would be to do unstructured, open-ended interviews with all of the T/R's in which we asked "What stands out for you about this experience?" Even structured interview protocols would seriously bias the data, since there are really appropriate and empirically-derived theories to guide the choice of questions. With grounded theory building, it would be possible to present the patterns, processes, and metaphors which MAY POSSIBLE describe the individual case studies which were examined in the interviews.


 I have done this sort of research, and am engaged in such a project now about the development of men's attitudes toward women and feminism. I have also done similar content analysis research on texts - journal articles and books looking for the presence of paradigms. (Cites available for gluttons of small print). In any case, the need for conclusions, recommendations, theories, and what Weik (1979) calls hasty closure MUST BE GIVEN UP because they seriously limit the nature of inquiry.


 So, thank you for bearing with me in this response. I have not wanted to stir things up any more, but feel that I could not help but speak out about what seems to be a misuse of the language of research instead of labeling something as an opinion. Though I have never met you, and will unfortunately not be in Montreal, I have great respect for your work with FOG and UBF, along with your many roles in the movement. I think you would do much better at this point to engage the rest of the UB community which is not involved with the TM - in the many many fundamental issues and topics which need to be discussed. Your posts to Urantial about the TM seem to be more and more repetitive and hostile.


 Please take these comments in the spirit in which they were intended, as a gentle reminder much as I give myself many times each day to watch my anger and learn from it. There are many such as Dan M. who absolutely agree with you. The fact that you share an opposing view IS NOT THE POINT. The point, and I think this is what drove Leo from the list more than any crisis in faith or research about WSS, is that the UB presents clear standards of conduct for discussing ideas. Theses standards have their basis in love, gentleness, and the realization that it is our motives not our words or thoughts which show us to be who we truly are. Bear with me and others as we all go through this learning process.



28 Jul 1993     David Kantor      Quick reply

Subject: Quick reply


 Good Morning Loggers...


 Wow! I didn't mean to stir up such a hornet's nest of response -- nearly 50k in 24 hours! Let me for the record withdraw my poorly documented and unfair psychological assessment of channelers for the moment. While I think there is something there (and I have my own experience of the factors which contributed to my involvement with similar phenomenon in the past and with which I continue to deal as I attempt to reach a spiritual life clear of my own antecedants) I must agree with Thea that we live in a dysfunctional society and none of us would likely be where we are if we hadn't been searching for safe passage through the shoals and narrows in which we have found ourselves.


 I do think that those of us who have had significant drug experiences need to be particularly careful because we have come to associate particular neurological states with worship and with contact with divinity which are not necessarily valid components of genuine spiritual contact. If we unconsciously assume that such states are a normal part of religious experience, I think we can miss out on some essential integration of other non-neurological components of the experience which are necessary to fully realize the experience and to know it in its qualitative as well as quantitative fullness.


 I also am coming to the view that it is unproductive to engage in such psychological speculations for a variety of reasons -- far better to seek more tangible grounds on which to stake a position. But I maintain my view of the Woods Cross material and the TM as well. It is a sham and a sad day in the Urantia movement when so many individuals are so easily led astray. But I will respond directly to the Woods Cross materials rather than engage in a useless diatribe -- but that will have to wait for at least the weekend.


 To quickly answer one point you made, Thea, I have no bone to pick with Buddhism or Jainism or any other religion because they are not ripping off The Urantia Book as a crutch to support their own partially formulated views of reality. I find the way the TM uses the UB to be highly offensive and again, a sad commentary on the intellectual integrity of many readers of the book. If you would simply study the book and perhaps spend a little time studying some of what took place in the first 200 years following Jesus' bestowal, I think you would see that not only is there no basis in reality for the TM claims, but such phenomena appear to be an inevitable part of a new revelation being introduced, much like a frothy turbulence temporarily created as God places something new into the forward moving stream of religious life on our planet.


 Gotta run, but will respond to the posts related to this later in the week....a lot of good thoughts were expressed that need to be considered.


 

28 Jul 1993     Philip Calabrese      In search of UM harmony

Subject: In search of UM harmony


 ------- Dear Logondonters,


 Well, I see that the verbal wars have begun anew here! Too bad. I thought we were beginning to find a way to peacefully co- inhabit this list.


 I have been looking for some area of compromise between those who believe the TM to be what it purports to be and those who believe otherwise. It seems to me that one major problem for non-TM- believers it is the TMer's insistence that their sub-movement of the Urantia Movement (UM) is being SPECIALLY sponsored from on high (Machiventa and Christ-Michael). While that may not today translate into some sort of hierarchy (priesthood) for the UM, it would likely lead in that direction as time goes on, an eventuality that I trust even the TM proponents would not wish to see.


 In view of the TMer-admitted gross inaccuracies of many testable statements attributed to various T/R's as have been listed here by several people (including myself and Dick Prince to name two) it does seem hard to accept that the TM has the marks of a celestial program.


 Now I know that TMers say that the TM messages are not intended to be a text book like the UB but rather an effort to encourage individual people to practice the UB's spiritual teachings in their daily lives, and so the factual inaccuracies are supposedly not important. Many TMers seem to be moved to more serious efforts to "seek the stillness" and to love their fellows. All that is well and good. It is the collateral claims that are problematic. People like David K find it impossible to resist the urge to disavow these people of their supposedly erroneous beliefs. If the TM messages are for the personal edification of the receivers then why are these personal and flawed messages being published and trumpeted about? Should they not all be private? Perhaps the human tendency to tell others is one of the inaccuracies.


 Nevertheless, I am reminded of Jesus's handling of the man who asked about Jonah and the whale. Jesus refrained from disillusioning the man about the literality of the tale but instead he used the story to teach the truth contained in the story about not being able to run away from ourselves or God.


 It seems to me that the TM could be 95% truth and 80% fact without being factually SPECIALLY SPONSORED FROM ON HIGH. That could be one of the inaccuracies. But I know that many TMers are not willing to accept that interpretation.


 On the other hand, barring some more explicit evidence, it is justifiably hard for careful people to accept that Machiventa and Christ-Michael are sponsoring a teaching movement that is not only injecting many factual errors into the thought stream of people but also leading them to look to others for messages rather than telling them that the spirit within is their real teacher. Throughout his years growing up John the Baptist had Jesus available as a first cousin but was encouraged by Jesus to muddle through by himself without asking Jesus for help. Perhaps that is what is required of us - muddling through by gradually hearing and coming to conclusions with only the normal spirit avenues. It seems to me that any circuits that possibly have recently opened are not directly available to humans.


 It seems to me that T/R's could stop putting quotes around their TM receptions and simply humbly accept in their own name whatever credit or criticism comes from their postings. That would make it much easier for everyone to accept or reject a statement without having to buy-in to the claims of SPECIAL SPONSORSHIP along with all the trappings and pitfalls that such a belief entails. Even the messages suggest this approach: We do not need to believe that there is a special teaching mission to accept this or that spiritual statement as helpful and valid.


 But are the TMers willing to give up the implied status of being SPECIALLY in contact with our spiritual overseers? Probably not. They may also think they have no choice but to claim this status.


 To sum up, I don't see nearly enough reason for me to justify my coming to the conclusion that the material being published under the TM ranging as it does from helpful spiritual encouragement to erroneous factual statements is other than the product of normal spiritual contact and psychological filtering. I wish the TM non-believers didn't have to be distracted by the question of the origin and status of "messages" and could just evaluate the material.


 Two last questions: To a TM believer, what would it take to disprove the TM as SPECIALLY authorized from on high? To a TM non-believer, what would it take to prove the TM really is SPECIALLY authorized from on high?


 Phil -------




28 Jul 1993     Dan Massey      Balances and Priesthoods

Subject: Balances and Priesthoods


 Thea,


 I do not consider my view of the TM particularly trying to be balanced. I am simply trying to be true to my own lights and not be tactless (or not too tactless) at the same time. Frankly, I enjoyed David's posting as it mercilessly skewered the TM, while personally feeling that getting into the psyche of a T/R whom I had never met except in TM transcripts was way outside my charter as a pop shrink. If David feels qualified to take that one on without buying a lot of karma, that's his choice.


 I feel willing to take on the Woods Cross events (early transcripts and the LA experience) because of personal knowledge, polarized, no doubt, by irritation at Duane and myself (for having "trusted" Duane in other situations, that I may now be less confident of, having seen him in operation on this subject). Obviously, LA was a one-shot deal, ill-advised by any standard (imho), and a prescription for disaster. The only celestials I saw there were looking mortified and carrying signs that said "I'm only here because I HAVE to be here." I guess this was the deal in Napierville, too. (You know I'm trying to be humorous about this...)


 On the priests business, I certainly have never heard anyone in the TM claim they wanted to be priests. It simply occurred to me that they are in the business, like it or not, of doing what priests are supposed to do, that is, interpreting the wisdom of God to man. The fact that they do not necessarily seek this role as such, is not (imho) relevant, since it is what they are actually doing, like it or not. Although they do not claim to invoke the literal presence of God (as RC priests claim to do and actually do in the Eucharist and anyone else can through the Remembrance Supper), they do invoke a communications channel with the celestial, which, to most people, is pretty close to the same thing at the practical level. (I do not think it IS anywhere near the same thing, but I'm projecting the reactions of the average participant...)


 Enough. Hope this is clarifying and not too controversial.


 By the way, I do not share your enthusiasm for a debate of the TM on its merits. This is really a question of my priorities at this time. Others may be willing to make the investment, but nothing I have seen or heard makes me feel it is worthwhile for me.


 Cheers...Dan Massey


 Offensive quote for the day;-]


 "The most sincere form of hatred is indifference."


 (I don't think that's from the Book...)




28 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: In search of UM harmony

Subject: Re: In search of UM harmony In-Reply-To: [9307282246.AA04225@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dear Phil,


 I hate the so-called status. There is a part of me that wishes to God I could claim that this is only my own mind. But I am not young, nor naive, nor inexperienced, nor unequipped intellectually, and I cannot deny my own experience that is telling me this is not merely me, not just my own mind. My life would be easier and less painful if I could, but I cannot say so and yet remain loyal to the truth as I have tried to be over all these years of studying the UB. I cannot tell you the exact details of what is happening and what authority it is based on; I can only tell you that I am having experiences that have given me growth and that I cannot deny, and that simply do not fit the criteria that make them my own mental constructs. I have a relatively high degree of self-awareness and have had for some years. It is not a question of deciding philosophically and saying okay, sure, I will call it my own mind. It is a question of serving the truth of my experience, something that I have spent years in cultivating my relationship with the Father in order to do. My first reaction when the experiences began to occur was , "Oh, God, no, not me." I knew what it would mean in terms of rejection and denigration. I cannot deny what I have experienced and it goes beyond my own mind and it is good. It is not a philosophical question, it is a life-choice. And initially I rejected it as hard as any here and used the same arguments. I repeat, I cannot deny what my very life-long search affirms to be true. Not for you, not for anyone. And it hurts, it is very painful. I serve the Father's will to the best of my ability, and I will continue to do so throughout my days. I have always known that this would probably lead to difficulties if I was courageous enough to really try to live the religion of Jesus. And now that I am more fully living it, I have certainly found that to be true. I cannot deny this and remain an ethical being.


 All of you, dear ones, this is the making of a real schism. Schisms come about when diversity is not permitted. I do not see that it automatically follows that the TM would become a priesthood to the UM unless those of you who pursue the UB in other fields fail to reach the many who need you. I do not wish to see such a priesthood and I do not wish to see the TM be the only avenue to the UB. I will never want the loss of necessary and important diversity. I am not alone in this. The ones I hear talking about this authority are those who do not want the TM to exist. It does exist. And it doesn't matter on what authority or none that it is based; it is based on the sincere desire of many to live what the UB has taught us all these years, to love the Father more fully and to love and tolerate more fully our brothers and sisters. I am reminded of those who asked about Michael, by what authority does he teach. It was a smokescreen for fear of losing control of power. I hope deeply and pray that such is not the case here. I cannot tell you just how deeply I hope that!


 In love and a deep desire for understanding that brings us all into some unity despite our diversity,





 Thea

28 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: Balances and Priesthoods

Subject: Re: Balances and Priesthoods In-Reply-To: [9307282340.AA05931@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dear Dan,


 Thanks for your comments. I know your position, of course, but meant balance in approach, not necessarily in viewpoint! I did get your humor, which usually plays well with me; we could use more humor here. Things work best when that oil is applied.


 I understand the case you are making about priesthoods. I see the dangers, and have since the beginning. I am not unconcerned about how that will play out. Still, I wonder, had we called ourselves teachers of the Urantia Book, if we would have been received any better. Personally, having witnessed UM history for several decades, I certainly doubt it. We would have been damned no matter what we tried to do, even had we been a group of concerned UM readership working without any celestial help. What I have observed is a very ugly power struggle over these past years. I am coming to believe that much of the upset here is nothing more than a continuation of the same. Those who are "in" or think they are, are pretty determined to stay "in". I am not necessarily speaking of individuals on this list who I know are sincere seekers and truly desirous of the healthy and loving growth of the UM, but rather of the somewhat bigger picture in which the earlier schism is still continuing its fracturing deconstruction. It isn't pretty, no matter how you look at it. Sometimes it isn't pretty no matter what "side" on is supposedly on. I think of all the old heresies. It hasn't changed all that much, has it.


 I didn't think that you would be interested in an examination of the TM per se, not personally. Actually, I am not much either. But if we are going to continue to discuss it here, and I for one would rather not, I would like to see it done with accuracy and love.


 Again, all of you, I reiterate. What are we going to do here? What is our agenda going to be? What was happening before? Someone clue me in, eh? I have stated many times my personal desires - more along the lines of sharing the "war" stories (though I find that a misnomer) that Fred wants to share, or talking about what we each do personally to seek the Father, or discussing how the Spirit of Truth might really work in our lives. We are pulling at cross purposes around here, it seems. Can we find a path we can all travel together while not losing our diversity? I am still looking for an answer to this challenge.


 Anyone take this on?


 Thea

28 Jul 1993     Dan Massey      TM Proofs and other matters

Subject: TM Proofs and other matters


 Phil,


 Thanks for a thoughtful and (imho) almost-balanced assessment of the TM phenomenon and emotions. As a non-believer, I am aware of a number of specific things that, if they were to appear in a TM transmission to anyone, would almost completely convince me of the authenticity of the whatever it is. The fact that none of these specific things have been provided is part of the basis for my skepticism about the TM. I cannot identify what these things are without compromising their value to me as hallmarks of revelatory authenticity, but the angels of planetary supervision are well aware of what they are, as they and my own spiritual ministers know that this assertion is not a sham to avoid accepting responsibility for the TM.


 I am sure there are many other things of which I am at present unaware that would also be persuasive to me. I became convinced of the authenticity of the UBook without it satisfying any criteria that I could consciously state. The same could also happen for the TM, but has not to date.


 A great deal of evidence has been presented that persuades me that the TM is not authentic. I do not view this judgment as absolute convictions but, simply, rational (to me) weighing of the presented evidence and information. I am not sure what would convince me the TM is totally false or fraudulent. Probably a declaration of the end of the world and a call to turn over all my assets to the prophetic channel (as with the Sedona group). Certainly this was the exterior thing that turned me against FoG within 10 seconds of hearing the news of Vern's messages. It was like the portcullis coming down, the gates slamming closed, and the drawbridge going up--all at once.


 WRT the TM, my reaction has been to loose the alligators in the moat, post the palace guard at the far end of the drawbridge, and prepare boiling oil, hot lead, and Greek fire to dump from the ramparts. This may seem more outreach-oriented, but it is also defensive (like the U.S. Defense Department).


 Trying to keep smiling... ...Dan Massey

28 Jul 1993     Philip Calabrese      Response to Thea

Subject: Response to Thea In-Reply-To: Your message of Wed Jul 28 16:58:20 1993


 ------- Thea, and other Logons -


 First let me assure you that no one here in San Diego is preoccupied with human status, status before each other. The whole spirit of the "message of Jesus" is spiritual equality before God - one Family of love, not petty jealousies. As a father four times over, I know how sibling squabbles over what has been freely provided to all can be vexing to a loving parent. This dispute is not about status - at least not for most UBers.


 To pick up your call for a way to proceed that does not cause a schism, again I say let us together specify the defining criteria that determine who is to be regarded first as a member of the spiritual fellowship of God (everybody?), and then who among them is a follower of Jesus, and then who is a UB believer, and so forth including those who believe/disbelieve in the TM.


 In this way, groups can keep their internal integrity - keep the purposes for which they were originally formed rather than allow others to preempt their agenda.


 At the same time, those who are followers of Jesus (and perhaps not UB believers) can come together and share the Remembrance, invoke the presence of Jesus, and enjoy group relationships.


 If we spiritually identify with each other on this latter level as followers of Jesus who believe his Gospel of the Fatherhood of God and the spiritual fellowship of all persons, and come together to DO SOMETHING not to agree about something, then we can go on together without schism on the "follower of Jesus" level.


 When it comes to the vast majority of the UB-believers it probably matters little, as far as their need for organizational purity is concerned, that the TMers claim this SPECIAL contact. We routinely get people who believe all sorts of things coming to UB study groups without it seriously disturbing us! But a UB study group should study the UB, not be diverted to another goal.


 At the same time it seems reasonable to me that some subset of UBers may wish to restrict their membership to only those who believe ... (fill in). These UBers have an agenda that they do not wish to see diverted by contrary beliefs from their original goals. The TM may be incompatible with the goals of some UBers.


 But we can all come together at times as UB believers, and Jesus followers to DO the Remembrance and perhaps other ritualized practices intended to dramatize our main beliefs as members of these groups.


 `Harmony is the speech of Havona'


 Phil -------




28 Jul 1993     Matthew Rapaport              other interesting correlations

Subject: other interesting correlations


 Well David K. what were you on when you released that blast? I note you have already apologized for the emotional tone and your pseudo statistics. Thea and Karen have responded *masterfully*. Talk about a skewed sample... Really! As Thea pointed out, this whole movement is a skewed sample...


 You seem to slip in and out of these moods in which you express yourself in an emotional (and in this context) hostile tone (I wonder if they coincide with some project - paper, course, job ?? that you have just completed? Feeling some kind of pressure removed, or goal satisfied, you let your diplomacy down...). Believe me I understand it. I am a polemicist by inclination, and I like to do things for their dramatic impact. It was the UB's statement that Jesus never did things purely for dramatic impact that first caused me to question this central part of my own character. A part I might add that has often caused offense even though I never so intended it... Even now, this tendency has not been totally eliminated (or rendered harmless) in my character.


 Interestingly, I find a correlation between these episodes of yours and other statements (invariably in the same post) that cause me to want to play devil's advocate... To wit...


 >This is particularly to be decried amongst readers of The Urantia Book. >For what appears to me as the first time in history, we have gotten >a major revelation without the trappings (yet) of a priesthood or a >personality cult built around the prophet through whom the >revelation came.


 Well maybe, but this is after all the first Revelation that wasn't delivered by a person so your statement is kind of tautologous... But more then that, your implied wish that it remain so (indefinately perhaps?) is a hopeless fantasy...


 "His [Paul's] theologic compromises indicate that even revelation must submit to the graduated control of evolution." (p984)


 and don't forget what happened to the Greeks under the influence of Melchizedek...


 "The Salem missionaries might have built up a great religious structure among the Greeks had it not been for their strict interpretation of their oath of ordination, a pledge imposed by Machiventa which forbade the organization of exclusive congregations for worship, and which exacted the promise of each teacher never to function as a priest, never to receive fees for religious service, only food, clothing, and shelter." (p1077)


 This is an interesting subject to me because the form of the future compromise is still unclear. If the TM didn't have so much that was problematic about it, it could easly form the beginnings of it. I would not automatically condemn an evalgelistic movement that borrowed heavily, even overtly, from the UB. The popularization of the UB (if you will) may be the only way to inculcate something of its philosophy, teachings, and spirit into the human cultural stream on a large scale.


 >I would also question the long-term servicability of using >spiritual methods for the solution of psycho/social problems...


 Surely you don't mean this quite the way it sounds... I think you want to say one shouldn't rely *solely* on spiritual methods perhaps...




29 Jul 1993     David H. Larsen    Of agendas hidden and tongues

Subject: Of agendas hidden and tongues uncivil


 Greetings,


 I have been a non-participant on the list since David's drive-by shooting of early July, and Leo's subsequent departure. That uncivil business left a bad taste in my mouth, and since then I've found interacting with Leo by private e-mail to be a more satisfying experience, spirtually and personally, than continued participation hereon. The tedious on-going diss-ing of the TM by those hostile to it, fails to illuminate, and ultimately produces indifference and little more.


 I'm not quite sure why I'm bothering to respond to this latest drive-by. I suppose that twelve years of directing a program of group therapy for men who abuse women has conditioned me to label abuse for what it is when I encounter it; and David's latest was full of it - abuse that is.


 David, I readily acknowledge your incomparable stature as a scholar of the UB, but I am saddened to witness the damage you do to your credibility by your persistent indifference to the human feelings of those you subject to your abuse on Urantial. It was not the poverty of insight you exhibited in your hypothesis regarding the connection between childhood trauma and adult endorsement of the TM which gave offense, but rather the lack of kindness in your presentation.


 Your efforts to drive the TM dialogue from the board and from the Urantian movement is the least successully hidden of agendas. Points are not given for brutality.


 In saddness,



29 Jul 1993     Dennis Shields      Is prophecy the most gratuitou

Subject: Is prophecy the most gratuitous form of error?


 Aloha


 When those opposed to the TM say that they do so on the basis that it is error prone and using a method not provided for in the Urantia Book, I am led to wonder if the methods used by Machiventa in collaborating with the *prophets and seers* mentioned in the following quote, were in any way analogous to the TM?


 Our Old Testament records of the Prophets would seem to indicate that the *transcripts* of these olden TRs are full of error, that the predictions of the appearance of the coming Son were so distorted that the Jews failed to recognize Him when He came.


 This is our record of a previous collaboration between a Son of the order of Melchizedek status and TRs. Based on this comparison the accuracy of the TM would appear to be an improvement over Melchizedeks Old Testament effort.


 Perhaps it would be fairer to compare the TM to the Old Testament than to compare it to the Urantia Book.


 *This same Melchizedek continued to collaborate through- out the nineteen succeeding centuries with the many prophets and seers, thus endeavoring to keep alive the truths of Salem until the fullness of the time for Michael's appearance on earth.*


 Aloha



29 Jul 1993     Pj Seremjian       Re: Of agendas hidden and tong

Subject: Re: Of agendas hidden and tongues uncivil In-Reply-To: [199307290442.AA14667@cs.uwp.edu]


 David, I'm with you re:Dave K. I think he is a bully, plain and simple! This is a man who has difficulty relinquishing control at level, imo. But, then, as a victim of abuse, I am probably overly sensitive to aggression, physical or verbal.


 I, too have been enjoying Leo as a one-on-one. [G] I think Leo is a terrific person, and got needlessly grilled on Urantial. I have to say, I think the Book is terrific, but I have my doubts about a few of its followers! I met Leo on Prodigy, back in March, via Jim McNelly, who I met on the Garden bb. I guess I'm a little spoiled, gardeners are such sweet, mellow folk!


 Anyhow, what I wanted to say is: check out Intelec!! Its a smaller network, Jim is the moderator of the new Urantia conference there, and Leo will be joining up when he returns from Montreal. Its only 30 bucks for a whole year, you can also get an Internet ID for about 10 bucks more, and there are local nodes all over the place. Jim or I can help you get all set up. Just send Jim a diskette and he'll download the software you'd need. Its kind of fun, since its so new, and smaller, that I think we can point it any direction we'd like it to go.


 Give it a thought, I think you and I are on similar wavelengths re:Urantial



29 Jul 1993     David Kantor      Some Comments

Subject: Some Comments


 Hello Loggers...


 Thea, As I mentioned in my note to you, my responses on urantial have been quite moderate compared with the feelings that many UB readers have towards the TM. Let's not cut off the option to disagree and disagree strongly if that be the case. Incidentally, the TM does, imo, represent the first steps towards the establishment of a priesthood. I highly recommend some study in the history of religious movements if these problems are of concern to you. The seeds of priesthood are planted when anyone in a community has a contact with God which other individuals in the same community do not. It begins to grow when those individuals proceed to tell the others what God has to say about and to the community. Don't kid yourself with spiritual idealism -- this is exactly what is happening in the TM and its potential for abuse is enormous. Even the UB tells us that the development of these things is always unconscious. We need to be wise and alert as we continue on our course. Without sound philosophic guidelines, the potential for abuse by T/Rs is also enormous. Witness the Sedona folks -- they've just been at it a little longer than the rest of you. I knew Bruce and Richard back in the late 60's when they were just getting started in the channeling business and would show up at study groups in their robes with the latest word from Melchizedek. If you function in a situation in which you are receiving information from some supposed celestial source, and you are then passing that information on to someone else, you are in a position of power in that relationship. I would expect you to take that very seriously as you have the power to say something to that individual which can completely alter their life and their perceptions. It's a classic priest/layperson power relationship. I personally think it is immoral to do that to another human being. It gives the priest power at the expense of the layperson's ability to gather the strength to chart his/her own inner course.


 As an aside, I must say that if you're asked a question and you respond with the pronouncements of another person who is speaking through you and then you proceed to request that we honor this view you hold of yourself in our subsequent responses to you, you won't find many public forums on which you are as graciously received as on urantial. Again, its all relative, isn't it? Anywhere else, I suspect, you would have *really* experienced what ridicule can be. So I think we're operating here well within bounds which are large enough to accomodate substantial conceptual diversity, and that's an achievement in itself -- not to say we can't do it more graciously.


 I have a lot of faith in people to move forward on their own in a way consistent with the hopes of the revelators *if* they will seriously study the book. I hope to get to a point where this is the only issue I am pressing. My feeling remains that if TM adherents truly studied the book, they would recognize the fallacy of their position. There are several issues which continue to come up which are dead giveaways. These are:


 References to the Spirit of Truth References to "circuits being opened" References to direct symbolic communication with "Teachers"


 Either one of these, if studied seriously enough to develop a working model vis-a-vis their explication in the UB, would reveal a situation in which something like the TM would be impossible, or at least extremely unlikely. The other thing that bothers me is that I sense in the UB a revelation of the nature of knowledge itself, in the discussion of thing, meaning, and value, which implies that the kind of knowledge which TM adherents claim to be transmitting simply doesn't exist in the universe. In my mind, one of the major revelations contained in the book is one of a completely new ground for the consideration of the nature of knowledge. TM claims are based on the assumption that the paradigm of knowledge and truth which has come down from the enlightenment is a valid representation of ideational reality. The UB indicates a completely different basis for understanding this foundation of intellectual and spiritual life. I want to see us be able to grasp something of these deeper paradigms contained in the book before we create a cultural belief system out of a superficial reading.


 I continue to see many things in posts by TM adherents which just don't add up to a coherent picture of what's going on. For example, you state "My first reaction when the experiences began to occur was, "Oh, God, no, not me." How does this compare with Bob Slagle's statement that the teachers only come to those who request them, that they are gentle and always respect the mortal nature? You sound like you got invaded.


 Dennis and Thea; as far as I'm concerned, the messages at FOG could all be correlated to power issues. Vern's first messages came at a time when his marriage was deeply stressed and he was beginning to be threatened by individuals within the organization who were getting fed up with the degree of absolute power with which he managed the operation. At Clayton, the frequency and content of the messages were correlated with the number of individuals thinking about leaving the organization. Every time someone left, the messages got more complex and specific in an attempt to keep the organization from disintegrating. Bob Blackstock's reminding us of Jung's theory of a group unconscious was clearly demonstrated here. When things really got bad, we actually got a date, which kept the group together a little longer. But after that, there wasn't much which could be done to save the group and the messages stopped. They were tied directly to power -- the power necessary to keep the group together. For me, it was an augmentation of Vern's power if my messages helped keep the group together. Perhaps this is why I felt so betrayed by Vern when it all collapsed -- I trusted him and put my life on the line to support him and I found out there was nothing there.


 Thea, even if the T/Rs eschew power, the fact that they function as such in their communities give them de facto power or status over those who are not T/Rs. Again, don't kid yourself here. Btw, I tried to move the discussions on this list into more "clear, documented arguments that we can all discuss" (quoting you) some time ago and got blasted for trying to start "quote wars" and being a literalist. How do you want it?


 Karen, I appreciate your testimonial about the Woods Cross folks and their sincerity. However, sincerity in and of itself is not all that great a quality. Without a critically self-corrective philosophy, sincerity can lead to disaster. One must consider what a person is sincere *about* -- is it a reality? Adolph Hitler was sincere. Most spokespersons for religious movements are deeply sincere but that sincerity doesn't validate their claims. I have been asked hereon to judge the TM by the content of the transcripts. I did that with the Woods Cross materials. It doesn't matter how good or well-intentioned the people are who produced that stuff, it still speaks for itself and indirectly reflects on the true reality of its source.


 Dennis, your questions are quite personal and I will approach an answer indirectly by stating that my comments about a possible link between channelers and specific psycho/social stressors was stimulated by an observation of my own life. But as I said earlier, I wish to withdraw the accusation because it's a strong one and is unfair to make without publication of supportive data. I have no intention of going into specifics of names and situations in a public forum such as this nor do I ever intend to do so. The truth is there for anyone to see who is willing to examine *all* the data and to consider *all* significant correlations. The fact that such phenomena are increasing in the society as a whole should be taken as an alarm rather than a justification.


 You ask if Sara and I became the priest class of the FOG group -- the answer depends on how you define priest. (See my response to Thea above about this -- also, I can only answer for myself, not for Sara). We did become sources of valued information from "the other side" until we managed to bring it to a halt. And again, our "channeling" was *all* about power, the power to force a resolution of the sustained stress within the group, the power to hold the group together, and the power to keep individuals who wanted to replace Vern's leadership with a more democratic structure from gaining any political leverage within the group.


 FOG had become a cult, and I participated in it for all the classic reasons why people get involved in cults -- a sense of family primarily, and a sense of social closeness which I had been unable to find outside the cult group. When such a resolution to my own psycho/social needs was found in a context which also appealed to my desire to be participating in the work of the revelation and which gave expression to my spiritual nature, the combination was deadly. So one's defense of such a group becomes a defense of one's own family and ultimately one's own identity. Rationality is irrelevant in such a situation. All values, no matter how noble, become subordinated to the social values of the sense of family. The data on individuals who become involved in cults is pretty conclusive -- individuals with healthy interpersonal relationships seldom get involved in such social structures.


 I think our needs for love and community are so strong that if we can't find it we'll fabricate it. Check out A.H. Maslow's "hierarchy of needs" in his book "Towards a Psychology of Being" and his discussion of how the more complex needs get subordinated to the more primary needs. I think he presents a good view of what balanced living is about.


 John Milam, I appreciate your comments. I must say, however, that I don't put much faith in the somewhat post-modern epistemological basis upon which you base your arguments about the TM. I do believe in the existence of objective standards which exist independently of the subjective experience of individuals.


 However, your reference to Weik caught my eye. His concept of "hasty closure" is precisely what I see the TM as representing. The TM brings to the UM a set of "conclusions, recommendations, theories, etc." which did not exist previously in the UM. True, the UM had its doctrines related to the manner in which the book should be spread, etc., but no metaphysical assumptions or doctrinal formulations of a religious nature. The TM changes all this by providing such formulations and bringing about a certain premature closure of inquiry. Before we have a chance to fully inquire into the nature of the spiritual and mindal circuits which surround and impinge on us, the TM adherents are telling us all sorts of things about them. Before we have a chance to fully explore the ways in which the spirit of truth interacts with the adjutants and with the Holy Spirit, we have the TMers telling us how to use it to validate their claims. This is one of my major concerns about the repercussions of the TM -- it's premature and may result in early closure of essential inquiry for many individuals. As I mentioned in my response to Thea above, I believe the UB provides as a part of its revelation, a completely new epistemological foundation for constructing more significant theological tools than has previously been available and we have not even begun to explore this possibility.


 To me this is another factor weighing against the validity of the TM. Imo, the UB provides us the foundation for a significant change in the paradigm of thought which characterizes Western civilization, and it is the change to this new paradigm (which will take centuries) which must be accomplished before the next phase of epochal revelation can occur. The TM locks us into a paradigm fabricated from existing concepts and mitigates against further inquiry as a byproduct of defending its dogmatic views.


 But it is a learning process for us all, participating on this list and I appreciate your jumping in and sharing your views. I don't intend to be "more and more repetitive and hostile." From my viewpoint, the TM position gets more and more untenable and preposterous with each new message from a "Teacher."


 Maybe Matthew Rapaport is pointing the way to more civilized interaction hereon. Matthew, I enjoyed your comments re an experimental planet. I think the experimenting does go beyond the DNA foundations into the intellectual and spiritual receptivity of the organisms. Recall the comments about difficulty in contacting the adjutants here, and the sudden appearance of the Sangik races. I wonder if our thinking paradigms re genetics and evolution are very accurate. I suspect that the life carriers design and develop something other than each and every form of plant and animal life. I suspect that they deal with formulations which will react to the environment in specific ways and that the actual physical manifestations are byproducts (and often revelations). I suspect that they have standard known formulations which will produce a reasonable environment for mortals with food, fiber, building materials, etc., but that they also are involved in discovery. Consider the retrogression that produced so many viruses. Also, the dinosaur episode is referred to as "this experiment in size." I get the sense that there is a "Michael-specific" set of formulations which contain unknown potentials which these life carriers are trying to discover in their sequential modifications of Michael's original plan.


 Carry on, friends, we've a long road ahead if we intend to be actively involved in this revelation. Best to keep lines of communication open and learn how to do it so that we don't give up and bail out of the process, imo.


 Best also not to become apathetic under the guise of tolerance.



29 Jul 1993     Philip Calabrese      Repost of "In Search of UM Har

Subject: Repost of "In Search of UM Harmony"


 Dear Logondonters,


 Well, I see that the verbal wars have begun anew here! Too bad. I thought we were beginning to find a way to peacefully co- inhabit this list.


 I have been looking for some area of compromise between those who believe the TM to be what it purports to be and those who believe otherwise. It seems to me that one major problem for non-TM- believers it is the TMer's insistence that their sub-movement of the Urantia Movement (UM) is being SPECIALLY sponsored from on high (Machiventa and Christ-Michael). While that may not today translate into some sort of hierarchy (priesthood) for the UM, it would likely lead in that direction as time goes on, an eventuality that I trust even the TM proponents would not wish to see.


 In view of the TMer-admitted gross inaccuracies of many testable statements attributed to various T/R's as have been listed here by several people (including myself and Dick Prince to name two) it does seem hard to accept that the TM has the marks of a celestial program.


 Now I know that TMers say that the TM messages are not intended to be a text book like the UB but rather an effort to encourage individual people to practice the UB's spiritual teachings in their daily lives, and so the factual inaccuracies are supposedly not important. Many TMers seem to be moved to more serious efforts to "seek the stillness" and to love their fellows. All that is well and good. It is the collateral claims that are problematic. People like David K find it impossible to resist the urge to disavow these people of their supposedly erroneous beliefs. If the TM messages are for the personal edification of the receivers then why are these personal and flawed messages being published and trumpeted about? Should they not all be private? Perhaps the human tendency to tell others is one of the inaccuracies.


 Nevertheless, I am reminded of Jesus's handling of the man who asked about Jonah and the whale. Jesus refrained from disillusioning the man about the literality of the tale but instead he used the story to teach the truth contained in the story about not being able to run away from ourselves or God.


 It seems to me that the TM could be 95% truth and 80% fact without being factually SPECIALLY SPONSORED FROM ON HIGH. That could be one of the inaccuracies. But I know that many TMers are not willing to accept that interpretation.


 On the other hand, barring some more explicit evidence, it is justifiably hard for careful people to accept that Machiventa and Christ-Michael are sponsoring a teaching movement that is not only injecting many factual errors into the thought stream of people but also leading them to look to others for messages rather than telling them that the spirit within is their real teacher. Throughout his years growing up John the Baptist had Jesus available as a first cousin but was encouraged by Jesus to muddle through by himself without asking Jesus for help. Perhaps that is what is required of us - muddling through by gradually hearing and coming to conclusions with only the normal spirit avenues. It seems to me that any circuits that possibly have recently opened are not directly available to humans.


 It seems to me that T/R's could stop putting quotes around their TM receptions and simply humbly accept in their own name whatever credit or criticism comes from their postings. That would make it much easier for everyone to accept or reject a statement without having to buy-in to the claims of SPECIAL SPONSORSHIP along with all the trappings and pitfalls that such a belief entails. Even the messages suggest this approach: We do not need to believe that there is a special teaching mission to accept this or that spiritual statement as helpful and valid.


 But are the TMers willing to give up the implied status of being SPECIALLY in contact with our spiritual overseers? Probably not. They may also think they have no choice but to claim this status.


 To sum up, I don't see nearly enough reason for me to justify my coming to the conclusion that the material being published under the TM ranging as it does from helpful spiritual encouragement to erroneous factual statements is other than the product of normal spiritual contact and psychological filtering. I wish the TM non-believers didn't have to be distracted by the question of the origin and status of "messages" and could just evaluate the material.


 Two last questions: To a TM believer, what would it take to disprove the TM as SPECIALLY authorized from on high? To a TM non-believer, what would it take to prove the TM really is SPECIALLY authorized from on high?


 


 

29 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: Some Comments

Subject: Re: Some Comments In-Reply-To: [9307291618.AA07089@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 David, I cannot seem to get you to hear me:


 HEAR ME, DAVID. I AM NOT OBJECTING TO DISAGREEMENT BUT TO STYLE. YOURS IS EMOTIONAL DRESSED UP IN PSEUDO INTELLECTUALISM. IT DOES NOT SERVE THE PURPOSES OF CLEAN AND HONEST DEBATE WELL.


 On other matters, tho it really seems pointless to comment. Let's just say then that I am a minister. And I take that responsibility for exactly what it is, and I take it seriously and prayerfully.


 I note that you, David, are the one who understands the book, and you appear to dismiss the fact that some of us have studied it as long, and for all you actually know, as deeply. I find some of your conclusions about the book and its nature and your understanding it just plain wrong and skewed in my view. But I don't run around saying so every message. I do not believe that you are interested in my position or any that does not agree with your own. You do not have an open mind. I regret this, but it is just too evident. There are others, David, who have studied the book with deep devotion and prayerful desire to understand. Some of them seem to have come to a more loving position than you. Your intellectual presentations of your own interpretations of the book, which are not all that intellectually solid anyway, are not convincing to me of your understanding of the book, though they impress others whose excessively intellectual approaches fall in line with your own. YOur behavior is my clue to your understanding of the book. To my mind, you just don't get it.


 I am wasting my time on much of this. And it doesn't bring out my prettiest side, either. I don't want to do what Leo did, but I am considering it. I do not and will never understand someone who says they are a believer in the UB who does not try to treat his brothers and sisters with love, and express genuine apology when he has failed. I think you are fooling yourself. YOu believe in an intellectual construct you have developed from the UB but it is hard to see where you believe in the religion of Jesus. These are harsh words, brother. You fail to respond to my words to you in private, so I say them here in this community, with some reluctance. Those of you who have known me on here know that I am not excessively prone to such bluntness, but I have tried and tried to be patient with your tone, David. You would try a saint, and I most certainly am not one. I recognize that my words only give you an opportunity to prove what you already believe. So be it. I have done what I do, and I have prayed over it, and tried to the best of my ability, both outside and within Urantial, to live the Father's will. These are my acts. The consequences are in the hands of the living God. I can do no more than the best that I can do. I have that comfort, at least.


 To all of you on here, I have repeatedly tried to ascertain what we want this place to be. I would still like to hear some clear statements on this. Sometimes Urantial seems more like Urantia-hell!! ;-> I didn't think we had one, eh.


 Well, greener pastures call. Like redoing work that is now lost forever inside the HD that it is not cost-effective to retrieve data from, its not being remountable. Alas. Lost some music, some art and some writing. Nothing current enough to ire clients, but some problematic. So must get to work. This will take much time and will probably make my appearance on here somewhat briefer and less frequent. Maybe. (Don't those of you who are sighing with relief at that remark get too relaxed, now. I have sometimes had to eat my words about my saying I will not be around here!)


 I am really, really going to try to disengage from the above brouhaha. It really does remind me of the flaming we did when I was Rat Brat. You keep getting sucked in by the negativity. Yeah, such a life on such a planet. This is one of the things I try to learn in my everyday life, too. And I expect that I am not alone in this struggle, eh.


 Greetings to you all, and thoughts. I am not going to apologize for being human and getting testy. Hard to avoid it sometimes what with all the testosterone on this list (right, Peg?!). I hope it isn't permanently catching! But it is a nice antidote to being nicey-nice, which I also tire of. And I suppose we will all survive.


 You will hear from me yet! That's a promise, not a threat.


 

29 Jul 1993     Dennis Shields      Tales of the pot and the kettl

Subject: Tales of the pot and the kettle


 Aloha I got a quick question which is worse calling David K. a bully or David implying that TRs are dysfunctional drug abusers? Aloha Dennis (hoping everybody will just chill out after all we are all brothers and sisters) Shields



29 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: Tales of the pot and the k

Subject: Re: Tales of the pot and the kettle In-Reply-To: [9307292111.AA13912@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dennis, you are a dysfunctional bully to be such a middle man!! Imagine, trying to persuade us that we are brothers and sisters and ought to act that way! Sigh.


 You just might be right, tho.


 I apologize for being cantankerous; ironically it has little to do with the TM. Things herein remind me of my family (early trauma, right?) and the way they never tolerated a thing that I thought or did. They always refused to understand what I was saying, and even called my sanity into question. Hmmm. Maybe my alcoholic brother was right about me. You never know.


 Even so, big Denny, I betcha you have had events of ire a time or two!! I bet you have a black smudge or so in your personal history, tee hee. And at the heart of it, I think you understand how these things go.


 I really must go get a life, people, if only for a few hours!


 David, thanks again for the personal "note", hehe. Forgot to say, my MIDI sequencer is one you will not have heard of most likely, Bars and Pipes Pro for the Amiga. It is the best we have got for my platform. Not ideal, but enough for my usage.


 Yes, gang, I am mad at him, but I like him, too. Sibling squabbles, don't you think? Both of us coming from early trauma and needing family connection? (I am far more serious here than you might imagine) David, you didn't say if you have siblings.


 I am going, really I am.


 You will never see me again, ho ho...


 


29 Jul 1993     Philip Calabrese      On tolerating diversity

Subject: On tolerating diversity


 ------- Dear Logondonters,


 Since Leo is no longer counting bytes, I will risk another posting.


 So what if some people believe in the TM as a SPECIAL program sponsored from on high while others think the channelers are fooling themselves and others? Can we not still tolerate the diversity of thinking within a larger framework?


 So what if some want to spend their time recording and sending out "messages" while others believe the messages are self- generated?


 Except for those who can not even tolerate intellectual diversity what is the danger in letting the matter develop?


 As long as groups define their goals and purposes (so that they don't get off their tracks) what harm is there?


 Surely we are not afraid of diverse beliefs within the Urantia Movement.


 While I may not believe in the authenticity of the TM as a celestial teaching program, I see no need to directly confront TM believers with an opposite interpretation of their experiences. I may not believe in TM but who am I to tell other people how to interpret their experiences?


 Is it not enough to say that such and such organization is devoted to ... (not channeling TM messages), and so "please refrain from digressions during the meetings" can be said to anyone who would think to take over a UB study group. If some people prefer to spend their time channeling or listening to TM- channeled material rather than reading the UB, then they can form their own subgroup. That is the way it goes.


 While I have looked for a way of accommodation between the TMers and the anti-TMers, I really don't see why it is such a large bone of contention. So what if some UB believers want to have a session on the TM at UB conferences? I'm sure that there will be others on hand (in their own session?) to dispute the TMers (lest someone might be led astray by their supposed erroneous claims of a SPECIAL mission.)


 It was not by accident that Jesus told us that `they will know you have been with me (i.e., a part of my fold) by your love for one another'. He did not say by `your common beliefs' they will know you were with me. He did not ask us to come together to state out "Apostles Creed" but rather to share the Remembrance Supper and faith-realize his presence with us at every moment.


 Why do we spend time disputing the claims of the TM rather than working on Jesus's agenda.


 Perhaps it is good that we are thus in dispute. If we can weather such a deep dispute without fracturing it will be because we have all found a greater cohesiveness in the unembellished Gospel of Jesus and his sacrament of Remembrance. These are the important elements of the Urantian religious community, not whether one believes in the TM or even the UB.


 It will be by such tolerance and generosity of interpretation that the whole world might be attacked to our flavor of mutual love. How can we draw others to our religious community if we can not tolerate even TM? Are there not many stranger beliefs in the world that we will need to be able to tolerate without criticism while we offer something in addition?


 Phil -------




29 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: On tolerating diversity

Subject: Re: On tolerating diversity In-Reply-To: [9307300204.AA19612@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Phil, that was a lovely post. It called me back from my slip sliding and back to what I most truly believe. Thank you, dear man.


 Yes, let's discuss Jesus's agenda. That is to my mind the most important thing we could do. I would like to talk about the struggles that every one of us go through in trying to put that book into practice in our lives. To try to live that religion of Jesus. And I believe that the UM as a whole can tolerate a great deal of diversity. In our area we have both TM groups and UB study groups and many of us go to both. I read the book pretty much daily as I have done for many years. It is indeed our love for one another that counts; Michael told us we were not necessarily supposed to believe alike, think alike.


 I agree that such a dispute as we have had around here is not the end of the world depending on what we do with it. The apostles squabbled amongst themselves a lot. It is not surprising that we, given the revelation we have been given, will also squabble about it as well. I recall again the quote about Michael's appointing a few of the apostles to choose people to come as students, and then the apostles teaching, each in their own way with their own viewpoints, and without interference about those differences. I want to do that here. I am capable of using only my own words here. I dont regret the one time I did not, but I do not expect that to occur on any regular basis. I am basically here as myself with my own views and agendas.


 There are many things I struggle with as I try to live the religion of Jesus. One thing that takes a lot of effort on a daily basis and that I fail at over and over is my attempt to truly see every one that I meet as another child, like myself, of the Father. There are days where I can do this, and actually acknowledge in my mind and heart "Child of God" to every one I meet or see on the street. They are special days. Other days, I am so wound up in my own stuff that I hardly see them, or find them annoying in one way or another. Those days are not so hot. I have found that taking that time to spend with the Father early in my day helps me to recognize that I myself am a well-loved child of the Father and somehow this makes it easier for me to see that others are as well. I find that true self-love, self-respect opens up my loving responsiveness to others. Not self-admiration or self-congratulation, but realizing that I am worthwhile and therefore have things to offer to my brother and sisters as I pass by. It can take so little. Just a smile, or a word or two at the check-out stand, or a head nod... so little just to make that connection. I beat myself up when I find myself not doing it. And that self-flagellation is also not constructive. Enough to merely recognize it, know I want to do it better and move on with conviction. I think about the child learning to walk. If he beat up on himself every time he fell, I doubt that he would do it. All it requires is to see what I am doing and simply start over again, knowing that I am human, I will make mistakes (as you have seen plenty of on here) and just to keep trying again. I know all this. Making it a living reality and not just an intellectual understanding is what is sometimes difficult.


 What are ways some of the rest of you turn your intellectual understandings into living realities? What are some of the experiences you have had with this?


 Phil, thank you again for your balance and tolerance. I really do honor it and appreciate it and will try to take it to heart.


 We can do this, people. We can come together here and share our very differences in ways that help us grow. I still believe this. Forgive my snarling. We are all rather human here. As it should be; that is what we are.


 Love to you all,




30 Jul 1993     Karen Day       Off to IC93

Subject: Off to IC93


 Subject: Time:12:51 PM OFFICE MEMO Off to IC93 Date:7/30/93 7/30/93 Hi to all!


 Just a quick (I hope) note before heading off to IC93 and some vacationing in the vicinity. Hope to see some of you there.


 I wish I could respond adequately to the recent posts, but am already running behind on time, so will just give a few remarks.


 Thea, you're responses have been beautifully stated as usual. I always enjoy your posts. You present your viewpoints very clearly and intelligently and in a loving way, and I share much of your opinions and views.


 Phil, thanks for the message on tolerance. I think it's good advice to follow. In my Naperville study group, we have not always been in agreement with how to do the format, but have been able to work out compromises. We alternate between teacher meetings and book study meetings, so that any newcomers that wish to just study the book will have that option. In the 1st society group I attend, we don't even bring up the topic of the TM. We are all good friends and know that there are strong differences of opinions on this topic, so we avoid it and remain friends. It seems to work fine. Perhaps on Urantial we can strive for more tolerance as you suggest. However, I will not be offended if people want to voice something strongly. At some point, though, we need to recognize when an argument is at a stalemate and move on to other things. And yet, as I posted to David, I don't want to see anyone in this group be restricted from posting on a particular topic. I'd rather let the fur fly and wait 'til it settles, because it usually does.


 Love to all, Karen (until another) Day




30 Jul 1993     Dennis Shields      The cosmos is about the smalle

Subject: The cosmos is about the smallest hole that a man can hide his head in.


 Aloha all ye who logon here


 David in the immortal words of tricky Dick *let me make myself perfectly clear*. Sometimes I ask questions that are not designed to provoke an answer in response, rather to provoke thought. My questions were not designed to expose and examine your laundry in the village square, rather, since I must consider you a former TR, when you make all inclusive global glittering generalizations regarding the TRs such as dysfunctional childhood's or childhood trauma also drug abuse you are speaking of a set of mortals of which you are one. If you acknowledge that you are speaking of yourself then your words must be viewed as being more acceptable than if you are just lobbing rotten fruit at TRs pillared at the stocks in the commons. Self deprecation is testimony which is much different than being a verbal vegimatic slicing and dicing your way across Urantial.


 I accept your indirect admission of this as firmly establishing yourself as being one of that set of mortals of whom you were making such general statements.


 I must then view your postings hereon as similar to the testimony of a recovering drunk at an AA meeting, decrying the evils of booze. Except you are decrying the evils of channeling. The danger is that your subjectivity generates general absolutes which might not hold up in specific individual situations just as an ex-drunks statements to others that if they drink regularly they are also alcoholics may not be true on a individual case by case basis.


 I found very interesting your connection between power and channeling at FOG


 >For me, it was an augmentation of Vern's >power if my messages helped keep the group together.Perhaps > this is why I felt so betrayed by Vern when it all collapsed > -- I trusted him and put my life on the line to support him > and I found out there was nothing there.


 Do you mean that you *constructed * your messages to keep the group together? Consciously? If you are admitting to such fraud then you taking on the TRs is sorta like that actor Marjoe who s folks had used him to be a fake faith healer pronouncing all faith healing to be a fraud.


 You further state


 >our "channeling" was *all* about >power, the power to force a resolution of the sustained >stress within the group, the power to hold the group >together, and the power to keep individuals who wanted to >replace Vern's leadership with a more democratic structure >from gaining any political leverage within the group.


 This seems to indicate a basic dishonesty to those closest to you at the time, I recognize that you are a reformed channeler and that such deceptions are the very thing that you are warning about now. If your warning were toward the Sedona group exclusively I doubt that many would quibble with your statements. Yet by your generalizations you include individuals such as Thea, whom we have all grown to know and love here on Urantial. The repercussional consequences of such unfair statements applied to individuals whom fraud is definitely not a question results in the heat eclipsing the light in terms of illuminating dialog.


 I would not need specifics as to individual TRs childhood traumas and instances of drug abuse but I would say that your taking back your accusations is akin to calling back a bullet once its been fired, hard to do.


 I would like to see you flesh out these glittering generalizations for example you state


 >The TM brings to the UM a set of "conclusions, >recommendations, theories, etc." which did not exist >previously in the UM


 and ...... Before we have a chance to fully inquire into the nature of the spiritual and mindal circuits which surround and impinge on us, the TM adherents are telling us all sorts of things about them.


 Specifically what "conclusions, recommendations, theories, etc."? *All sorts of things* like what ? I'm asking these things because these statements are so generalized that I truly don t know just to what your referring


 A listing of the transcripts which you are familiar with and making reference to, would also be helpful.


 Phil totally off the wall here your post print out with both the left and right hand margins being justified, how you do dat?


 Aloha Dennis (oh boy I get to go play the blues and rock n roll tonight at the most southern bar in the USA The South Point Bar a.k.a. the Kau Knife and Gun Club) Shields




30 Jul 1993     David Kantor      Note to Dennis

Subject: Note to Dennis


 Dennis...


 I'll respond in more detail when I have time, but I wanted to immediately let you know that there was no fraud in the messages at FOG, only a great deal of sincerity. My statements about power etc. are my present view or rather *interpretation* of what was going on. There had to be a causal factor and when it became obvious that contact with "celestials" was not a reality, I was forced to conclude that the messages were entirely the result of unconscious psychological processes. An evaluation of the social situation in the context of conversations with other FOGers has led many of us to accept the scenario which I described to you as most likely representing what happened.


 What we had been attributing to "celestials" was simply the outworking of specific group and personal psychological processes which were completely unconscious at the time. Again, take a look at what Bob Blackstock has been saying about group levels of the collective unconscious. This is a good model which helps to explain a lot.


 Regards,


 David




30 Jul 1993     Philip Calabrese      Odds & Ends

Subject: Odds & Ends


 ------- Dear Logondonters,


 Thea, thanks for your reactions to my post on tolerating divertity, (and gee I'm sad to hear of the death of your drive.)


 Karen D, thanks too for you comment wrt to diversity. I'm not at all afraid of stifling debate on TM considering who we have on Urantial. The fur will fly I'm sure. BUT there needs to be a regular place of truce for the intellectual debaters to gather for spiritual sustenance and togetherness. I think we need to work on that first before we try to sort things out between believers of one type or another here and in the whole world. We need to experience a constant feeling of brotherly love before exploring the differences to the nth degree.


 Dennis, as an intellectual exercise I always compose my text with the right margins in mind - a poetic discipline I began long ago. I'm glad you like the look of it. It takes effort to accomplish.


 (If you can accept that about me, then I wonder..., would you like to acquire at a bargain price the Coronado Bridge here in San Diego, which charges a toll to cross?) [I use a modified on- line "ed" editor called "red", which will full justify from the cursor position to the end of the paragraph when I send a control-B.]


 Phil (Byte-king, well maybe not king) Calabrese -------

30 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: Odds & Ends

Subject: Re: Odds & Ends In-Reply-To: [9307310213.AA16102@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Ah, Phil, I may have 'out-bit" you this month!


 Thea




31 Jul 1993     David Kantor      Some Further Comments

Subject: Some Further Comments


 Saturday, July 31, 1993 Lafayette, CA


 


 Hello, Loggers....


 Quite a week hereon. Phil, I appreciate your stability and your constant call for unity amidst our diversity. One of the suggestions I would like to make is that we consider worship as a central aspect of our group religious lives. You have implied such in pointing us to the Remembrance and as-yet undeveloped rituals designed to dramatize our common spiritual loyalties.


 This would also be a significant contribution to keeping the Urantia movement fully open to individuals from other religious backgrounds who may want to continue their practices in their communities, but who also want to read The Urantia Book. I think if we were to develop simple, meaningful worship practices, we would be far ahead of the game. Thank you again for being such a good virtual minister.


 DHL; As a therapist you should know that in processes of significant group interaction, complexes can suddenly emerge into consciousness and will demand expression. The participants (and I stress participants vs those who choose to stay on the sidelines and periodically lob comments over the virtual fence into the playing arena) hereon are actively engaged in a dynamic process of discovery, and if this process is to be meaningful and significant, there is going to be full involvement of the psyche and emotions.


 The fact that we have enough love and respect for each other to reign ourselves in when we cross significant boundaries says more to me about our appreciation of Jesus' gospel than would be the case if we were being so conservative that those boundaries were never discovered or encountered. This has been a remarkably self-correcting group. I refuse to accept your accusation that there are hidden agendas being pursued hereon. As I said, I believe we are all engaged in a dynamic process of discovery of who we are as individuals in a controversial social context as well as what it means to be associated with an epochal revelation. One thing can be certain, the UB is an extremely powerful activator of the spiritual forces resident in the unconscious -- anyone who is going to be more than superfically involved in this is going to have to become accustomed to dealing with heated controversy because the UB is going to be extremely controversial -- its not going to be all nicey-nice sweetness and light. To me, the essential social ethic of Jesus' gospel is nonviolence -- psychological and emotional as well as physical -- and it is this ideal towards which I strive in spite of the obvious fact that I don't always make it. I see nothing in his ethic which eschews controversy, in fact, I would go so far as to speculate that controversy deepens as we proceed towards Paradise and encounter, as individuals, the ever deepening mystery of the infinity and perfection of Divinity.


 Dennis, your comparison of me to a reformed drunk is not a good one. I don't see a factor of addiction involved in channeling phenomenon and it is the recovery from addiction which seems to lead to the kind of campaigning which you describe. My purposes have been clearly stated hereon.


 I intend, at least for now, to step aside from discussions specifically about the TM because they simply don't seem to be productive. I'll see how that works -- it may take more discipline than I can muster when I see some of the stuff that goes across my screen......also, my discussion about channeling below could be interpreted as in reference to the TM but I feel I have opened up some issues hereon which need some closure or at least a fuller explanation.


 You're right about recalling a bullet once fired...not a reasonable undertaking. Let me simply say that I have been studying the issue (of early relationship trauma being related to channeling phenomena) since discovering what appeared to be significant personal antecedants to my own involvement in channeling. This study was further stimulated earlier this year by Byron's call for "primary research". I alluded to this work several months ago in a post indicating that I thought I had found a significant common denominator leading to a "profile" of channelers, but no one responded so I didn't think anyone was really interested in pursuing the issue.


 I cannot proceed with this discussion without "outing" a lot of people and it would be absolutely immoral for me to do such a thing. My objective, if I feel I want to pursue this, is to find other groups of channelers to study (outside FOG and the UM) and see if my theories hold up. Such a study would free me from involving friends and UB readers, but is somewhat on the back burner due to current business and professional demands. Constructing a valid means of studying the sample is also somewhat beyond my ken at this point, so it must remain speculative and I must consign myself to what can be surmised from the literature, a study which I will continue to pursue as I have time. I will attach my bibliography to this post for anyone who is interested in pursuing this on their own. I will briefly set forth what I think I am finding:


 The theory which is emerging in my mind has to do with parent-child relationships. The UB leads me to believe that these relationships are *prototype* relationships which profoundly affect our subsequent conceptualization of and relationship to God. The child-like trust which the UB extolls is destroyed in abusive relationships. This child-like trust should lead to a relationship with God which is beautifully subjective and has no distinct boundaries. There should be a oneness and a unity in the relationship. (The UB states that "self-consciousness is in essence communal consciousness -- God and man" pg 196)


 When we have alcoholic or abusive parents, we are forced to objectify aspects of the relationship in order simply to survive -- to establish boundaries within the relationship which segregate self from other in ways which destroy a desired unity and integration. There are times when we fear and hate the abusive parent, yet we need that parent and find times when we love them as well. This sets up a terrible conflict in our relationship and forces a degree of objectification which is destructive to unity. In later life, this has a profound impact on the way in which we relate to God and to the universe.


 My experience was that of having parents who were highly respected as spiritual teachers in the community in which I lived yet who were frequently quite brutal and destructive in the home. I could never figure out who they really were -- the persons I experienced or the persons the community constantly told me they were...or is there something wrong with me that makes me unable to grasp who they really are? Should I know them by the ideals they publically proclaim or by the actions to which the family was painfully subjected? These are tough questions which I believe really torque around the psyches of young children. The psyche gets torqued in just those areas crucial to the formation of concepts of relationship with a subsequent impact on the formation of ideas about one's relationship to God and the universe. Relationships, imo, are far more than concepts; they are *states* of consciousness which can become objectified as concepts through the kind of destructive experiences to which I am referring. This process of objectification, by its very nature, establishes boundaries within the self which partition off the psyche into different centers.


 The thing that is curious is that I am finding a correlation between such relationship traumas in individuals predisposed to channeling (and many of their followers) both within the UB readership and outside of it which is roughly 90% -- not an insignificant factor. My assertions here are suspect because of my sample and also my lack of a real scientific approach to the study. I have so far only 12 persons who claim to have experienced channeling or are strong vocal proponents of the phenomenon, with whom I have spoken personally. This seems like a large number of individuals who have experienced such things but it may be too small to be significant relative to the total number of individuals so inclined. I am merely checking out a personal theory here and not attempting a definitive study. One must still ascertain whether or not there is a *causal* relationship when two factors seem to be associated and I don't feel qualified to really develop the necessary research program to establish whether or not it is causal.


 Another curious thing is considering that the opposite of love is power. I found one author (while browsing in a bookstore and now I can't find the book!!!!!) whose premise was that a baby initially responds to love as a means of establishing a sense of self and if in a healthy environment, will naturally respond with love. This author went on to document the idea that if love is not present in that environment, the child will learn at a very early age (within 18 months) methods of using *power* to get needs met which should have been met out of parental love. This author maintained that when such a grasp for power occurs in early childhood, it can become a dominant characteristic of the individual's relationships throughout life, completely displacing love.


 This all seems to correlate (although not in a conclusively causal manner) with virtually all channeled material which seems to me to attempt to either establish power or provide love for the channeler and his/her followers (all of it very different in nature from the general tone of material presented in the UB).


 Why go into all this? My concern is that we be as conscious as possible of factors around which the cultus of Urantia Book readers gets established. It would seem a shame to me to have the cultus prematurely precipitated around factors of dysfunctionality which happen to characterize family dynamics in the late 20th century. Hence a desire to investigate and explore this possibility.


 Going back to Phil's comments, I think that if we could find a unity in worship (and I hope to explore what this word means and implies more fully elsewhere) and build our cultus accordingly, we would have a servicable system. We should also bear in mind that the book specifically points us to the significance of the family as something which should be central in this process. Given the above speculations, the family life is *crucial* to subsequent religious and spiritual life. How would we combine worship and the significance of the family?


 Thea, if you ever see a point at which you think I am misinterpreting the UB, I hope you will call me on it -- it would seem a reasonable engagement hereon.


 Matthew, if anything my more emotional responses hereon are correlated with publication of TM materials -- I can let a lot go by as simply individual expression but when I get something like the 50k of Woods Cross stuff, it's virtually impossible to sit still and not express my reaction.


 Peg, thanks for your note -- may your garden bloom profusely. My gardening these days is limited to a few herbs outside the kitchen door for inclusion in my mystery spaghetti and other concoctions but in past situations I have had delightful vegetable gardens and even a small orchard for a few years which I tended -- it was a tremendous delight. Rebecca keeps the roses going these days...


 Now I'm jumpy about what to post, having little idea if people will find it offensive or interesting. I must admit to being somewhat surprised by some of the reactions to things I have posted and trust that the above is a reasonable presentation of thoughts.


 I also trust you will all have a pleasant weekend....


 David Kantor


 


 **************************************


 This bibliography is provided per the above. I hope that interested persons will at least scan this list and get a sense of the material which is available. If anyone wants to pursue a deeper study, please contact me by private e-mail and share your discoveries.


 

 *A preliminary bibliography for research into personal and social antecedents to religio-psychic phenomenon*


 David Kantor July 1993


 W.J. Colville, "Universal Spiritualism: spirit communion in all ages among all nations" (New York: R.F. Fenno & Co., 1906).


 Francis Macnab, "Estrangement and Relationship" (London: Tavistock, 1965).


 Don Jackson, "Communication, family and marriage" (Palo Alto, CA: Science and Behavior Books, 1968).


 Gerrie Goldfarb, "Cult membership in relation to family, social and religious factors" (Thesis, Fordham University: University Microfilms International, 1987).


 L.J. West, "The Cult Phenomenon: mental health, legal and religious implications" (Los Angeles: UCLA Extension, 1982).


 Ken Levi, "Violence and religious commitment" (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1982).


 Christopher Riche Evans, "Cults of Unreason" (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1974).


 David Bradford, "The experience of God: portraits in the phenomenological psychopathology of schizophrenia" (New York: P. Lang, 1984).


 Thomas W. Keiser and Jacqueline L. Keiser, "The Anatomy of Illusion: religious cults and destructive persuasion" (Springfield, Ill.: Thomas, 1987).


 Violet MacDermot, "The cult of the seer in the ancient Middle East; a contribution to current research on hallucinations drawn from Coptic and other texts" (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1971).


 L. Norman Skonovd, "Apostasy, the process of defection from religious totalism" (Davis, CA: University of California Press, 1981).


 Edward Miller, "Authoritarianism : the American cults and their intellectual antecedents" (Thesis, University of Hawaii: University of Hawaii Library, 1979).


 David A. Halperin, "Psychodynamic perspectives on religion, sect, and cult" (Boston: J. Wright, PSG, Inc., 1983).


 Frederick Mark Kramer, "A sociological inquiry into the distinction between sects and cults" (Thesis, Columbia University: University Microfilms International, 1983).


 Rollo May, "Power and innocence; a search for the sources of violence" (New York: Norton, 1972).


 Rollo May, "Violence and Spirituality" [sound recording] (Big Sur, CA : Big Sur Recordings, 1978).


 Romney Moseley, "Becoming a self before God: critical transformations" (Nashville : Abingdon Press, 1991).


 Nancy Tresidder Savage, "Conversion from self-deception" (Thesis, Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, CA, 1980).


 Ronald Gardner, "A critical examination of conversion experiences in a military brig" (Thesis, San Francisco Theological Seminary, 1985).


 Eugene Gallagher, "Expectation and experience" (Atlanta, GA: Scholars Press, 1990).


 Fisk University Social Science Institute, ed. Clifton H. Johnson, "God struck me dead; religious conversion experiences and autobiographies of ex-slaves" (Philadelphia: Pilgrim Press, 1969).


 Bernard Dixon, "Journeys in Belief" (London: Allen & Unwin, 1968).


 Wilfrid Lawson Jones, "A Psychological study of religious conversion" (London: The Epworth Press, 1937).


 David Rudolph Belgum, "Guilt: where religion and psychology meet" (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1963).


 Bernard Phillips, "The search will make you free" (Friends Conference on Religion and Psychology, Haverford College, 1963).


 Arthur Hastings, "With the Tongues of Men and Angels" (Sausalito, CA: Institute of Noetic Sciences, 1987).


 Geoffrey Nelson, "Spiritualism and Society" (London: Routledge & K. Paul, 1969).


 John Michael Hinton, "Experiences: an inquiry into some ambiguities" (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1973).


 John Perry, "Psychosis and visionary states" [sound recording] (Big Sur, CA: Workshop Cassettes, 1976).


 Humphrey Osmond, "Understanding understanding" (New York: Harper & Row, 1974).

 !!!!!! too much stuff for such a short lifetime !!!!!!




31 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       Re: Some Further Comments

Subject: Re: Some Further Comments In-Reply-To: [9307311634.AA28336@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dear David,


 First I wish to thank you for an outstanding post. If you do not know what to post, please post more of the same. Your tone and content were to my mind excellent in several respects, one being that I found you to see extremely real and honest in this particular message. You said the same things that you truly believe, and I dont want to see you deny them, but you said them with an openness and honesty that was thought provoking and endearing. I feel kind of silly saying this, but it is how I feel.


 I would be interested in discussing this aspect of worship, of considering simple rituals, as long as they do not become codified absolutes, that we can all share together. I think it would be wonderful.


 I agree with your basic psychological theories almost completely with several points or caveats. One, I believe this compartmentalization of personality or mind, this business of portions of psyche is experienced more or less by humans. I see it as a continuum. Most of us have had those experiences that you describe to one degree or another and have compartmentalized this cognitive dissonance and fear as a defense mechanism. I notice that our very language holds many terms that reflect this divided self (lack of personality integration). Therefore, looking to this as a *cause* of channeling would be virtually impossible, to my mind. (Think of all the terms: I wasn't myself today. I can't believe that I did that. I was beside myself. I am just not in touch with myself. He was of two minds about it. .... the list goes on and on.) Also, with variables of human behavior being what they are, I think that establishing a causal relationship would be tough indeed. OTOH, I think that the pursuit of religion is certainly affected, and understandably so, by those early failed relationships with our parents. If we did not receive that love that we needed to fully develop our spiritual growth, how wonderful that there are ways to meet those needs, which are real and valid, in our later lives, rather than suffer on in twisted dysfunction as many people I know who do not have the benefit of real religion do. Actually, I do not by any means think that all so-called channeling is "valid" and thereby hang horns for my dilemma, for if I am involved with this, I must be able to make this distinction clearly in my own mind as I am called upon to express my own discernment in terms of the content of this phenomenon. Not an easy thing. And I find your relating of childhood trauma and the extremes of channeled garble somewhat persuasive. It is not so much, to my mind, that early trauma happened, as it is the degree of self-awareness about this, and recovery about it, clear knowledge of those personality compartments and their contents, that leads to problems. To wit, a person who is unclear about this, and not aware that it exists, can pretty easily spout so-called messages that contain the tinge of condemnation and threat that was experienced in childhood and not yet resolved. So I would like to see this study become much more subtle, I guess. There is much about it I also want to know and fully understand. Having had both training in a BA and MA in psych, but even moreso, having gone on to receive counseling and years of experience in support groups for dysfunctional background, I feel somewhat more secure of my own ground because I am somewhat more in touch with my own mental processes than average. It is not like this for everyone, and I admit that this does concern me some in relation to the TM. And the world in general.


 David, I want some of your mystery spaghetti! We also are reduced to not much more gardening than that, plus some flowers thrown in (hopefully enhanced by the columbine seeds that Peg sent). But for some reason the term mystery spaghetti made my mouth water.


 One point of UB interpretation if I may. You implied that power was the opposite of love. I don't think that the UB would agree. Even the mota on possessing power but refusing to use it for self-aggrandizement would suggest otherwise. There are other references, not the least being things like the power of God. No biggie, but just thought I would mention it.


 I really do see your point about our willingness here to hang out despite the inevitable troubles and do agree that we are doing better by virtue of being willing to push the boundaries and definitions than by sitting by disengaged via nicey-niceness. Nicey-niceness has always been rather anathema to me and was a cause of my unwillingness to be involved in some study groups in the past. You are also right that where we care, as humans, we will get into our emotions. If we can continue to admit to that when we see that we have done it, I think that we will do okay indeed. Perhaps better than okay. I certainly have let some of my emotions hang out here and regret when they are unfair and inappropriate to others.


 I will ponder this thing about simple worship rituals and see what my own reactions and thoughts are and try to share on this soon.


 Thank you, David. And thank you all the rest of you for hanging in here in real life, virtual as it may seem to be, which is not always pretty but at least acts.


 Love to you, David, and to all the rest of you on Urantial.




 Thea

31 Jul 1993     Dennis Shields      To suspect a friend is worse t

Subject: To suspect a friend is worse than to be deceived by him


 Aloha


 David the point about the drunk was not intended to correlate being a TR with addiction. If you mistook my example as being a personal attack my apologies as that was not my intent.


 The point I wished to make was about generalities, all inclusive statements which do not necessarily hold up on a case by case basis. What I wished to do was to show that if you have a position of advocacy as a convert from a former point of view to a new point of view diametrically opposed to the first view point then *generalities* used in advocating the new view point can seem so biased as to be useless as a means of discovering the truth. For all I know you might be on to something and I agree that it would be unfair to *out* individuals whom you believe to substantiate this hypothesis.


 I appreciate your bibliography but the list I asked you about was the TR transcripts you have referred to having reviewed in previous post, and this is simply to get a common frame of reference to better understand your view point. I think it a mistake for you to squelch your opinions on the TM on this list. What I do think would be helpful would be for you to review your views prior to posting them with regard to using generalities.


 Were my request (the following excerpt from my last post) unclear?


 >I would like to see you flesh out these glittering >generalizations for example you state


 >>The TM brings to the UM a set of "conclusions, >>recommendations, theories, etc." which did not exist >>previously in the UM


 >and


 >>...... Before we have a chance to fully inquire into the >>nature of the spiritual and mindal circuits which surround >>and impinge on us, the TM adherents are telling us all >>sorts of things about them.


 >Specifically what "conclusions, recommendations, theories, >etc."? *All sorts of things* like what ? I'm asking these >things because these statements are so generalized that >I truly don t know just to what your referring


 In my stated position of neutrality I really wish to understand your opinion, the examination of differing points of view is in my book the only way to come to an in depth understanding. These last two post my effort has been to encourage you to express yourself clearly, which pity my poor brain, glittering generalities just don t do for me, and I think this type of modification of your approach would result in a dialog of the less superficial aspects of your opinion with out generating the heat of offended egos that drive by slicing and dicing seems to create.


 I accept your position that the FOG channeling experience was not a fraud, I hope in your review of your post that you can see how such a question could arise.


 Aloha Dennis (in friendship and in pursuit of deeper understanding) Shields



31 Jul 1993     Thea Hardy       David, tape on the way

Subject: David, tape on the way In-Reply-To: [9307312056.AA01360@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Hi David,


 Had tape ready about Thurs but I have had flu since Monday and by then was too bedridden to post it. Alan forgot Thurs and then injured himself on the job for the second time in two weeks Fri. It went out late enough today (Sat that I think it may not get put out till Monday). (Alan is ok, but I think he does not like his summer job, not that I blame him!) In any case, it will now arrive in time. I am sure it will take longer than I like, snail mail being less than quick. Enjoy.


 


 I must say, logons, that having the flu this week probably did not help my vulnerability to events. That is another reality about being human that affects us all on here. That good ol' biochemical mechanism. Fun, ain't it?!


 One comment for a moment on priesthoods: I hope as others do that we do not end up with priesthoods relating to the UB, but we also have to balance that out against needs for leadership. The experiences with the Foundation and the Fellowship have indicated problems in this area as well. If we look at all of this as difficulty in finding viable approaches to leadership in the UM, I think we can say that we have a common problem. One question I have about leadership: How can we allow for the differences in knowledge, skill, ability, experience, etc that naturally differentiate us one from the other and yet retain the understanding that such differences in no way abrogate our essential equality as children of the Father, a loving Father who respects no personality over another? I see this as a fundamental crisis in our culture which is tending towards the Japanese saying "the nail that sticks up gets hammered down" and the danger of mediocrity that the UB warns against as regards democracy. We must find ways to honor ability, and increasing ability while teaching balanced ego function from both those whose abilities are greater and less. This is an issue that disturbs me continually as I see each generation of young people smashed in a variety of ways and ridiculed even for seeking knowledge and expertise. They are often considered by their peers and increasingly their culture, as snobs, even when they do not display know-it-all behavior. If we do not find a way to foster such superior attainments while maintaining true equality we will find ourselves in a great bind with a paucity of leadership capacity. On the one hand, we do not want to be lead by arrogant intellectual know-it alls, but neither do we want to be led by mediocrity which would seek to say that every viewpoint is equally valid! The balanced middle ground is not only difficult to attain, there are those who are philosophically so vague on this issue that they do not even understand the problem, let alone think about addressing it.


 


 Does anyone else see this as a serious problem that does in the end have some direct bearing on some of our discussions on leadership in the UM?


 


 With love,


 Thea

Aug 1993




2 Aug 1993    David H. Larsen    Turn your radio on

Subject: Turn your radio on


 Greetings Urantians,


 P.J., thanks for the tip regarding Intelec; I will follow up with Jim McNelly per your suggestion. Any opportunity for further dialogue with Leo the dark knight, will be eagerly pursued.


 Greetings also to David K. I assure you that like Karen, I have no intention of decamping Urantial, and have no wish to see your points regarding the TM go underground, any more than I wish to see discussion supportive of the TM go underground. I have learned more from you and Thea Hardy regarding the nature of human involvement in spiritual events, than I can ever repay. To lose any thread of this dialogue would be tragic.


 I also have no intention of being a passive lurker, (no criticism, expressed or implied to those who choose to lurk) occasionally lobbing comments across the bows of the good ship Urantial. For the past several months, excluding July, I have been right at the head of the windbag express, taking my risks, lumps and rewards along with all my virtual friends. so please David, give me a break. If offering up comment and discussion on Urantial places one at risk for a Kantorian drive-by, then so be it. I don't expect or want a life of pablum, but I can and do object to verbal assault.


 When I reduced my participation on Urantial in July, it was due to a lack of time, and impatience with the tedium of the great TM debate, not fear of controversy. Like most of us, I do have a real life outside of cyberspace. Twelve years as a combatant in the politics of domestic violence, makes what passes for conflict on Urantial, look and feel like a warm spring rain. When the radical feminists of the Battered Woman's Shelter Movement, detect the politically incorrect public pronouncements of a therapist treating battering men (yours truely), the results are more like acid rain than spring rain. So rest assured, no fear of controversy from this quarter.


 Yes it is certainly true that in a therapy group, truthful and supportive process insists on patience and tolerence when group members struggle to complete the outworking of internal conflict, and yes, the results are often messy. But rarely nasty, and when things do turn ugly, as the facilitator it is my responsibility to see to it that the group remains a safe place for all participants. Clearly such is _not_ my responsibility on Urantial, although this may be a boundary I would do well to monitor. As a group member however, I am aware of my obligation to take responsibility for my conduct, to be certain that it does no harm to the efforts of others to complete the outworking of their spiritual journey.


 May I offer specific response to this comment of yours to me. "The fact that we have enough love and respect for each other to reign (sic) ouselves in when we cross significant boundaries, says more to me about our appreciation of Jesus' gospel than would be the case if we were being so conservative that those boundaries were never discovered or encountered." I have two cuts on this. First, characterizing the posts of another participant as "an ignorant blend of truth and error bordering on real evil," and characterizing TM adherents as "self-deceived fools," definitely crosses a significant boundary imho, and thank you for acknowledging it.


 Second, could this not be said of the TM as well? Those who risk stepping out of mainstream religious haunts to seek the truth in an unconventional quarter such as the UB, do so because the hunger for the truth of Jesus, makes the risk of condemnation by conventional Christians a risk worth taking. In the same spirit, those who participate in the TM, as well as those who seek to learn from the participants, are willing to run the risk of self-deception and much else, in the hope of finding further evidence of Jesus' presence in the world.


 Your experience in FOG, as painful as the consequences apparently were, was undoubtedly part of the outworking of the interface between mortal human beings, and the celestial spirits representing Michael, and ultimately, God. I can't bring myself to believe that an event such as you describe, given your passion for truth and your intellectual capacity for discerning truth from fraud, was entirely empty of the presence of God. That it was painful, speaks to the inevitable "high strangeness" of such events, when human beings of comparatively limited intellectual gifts, attempt to perceive and understand the divine presence. I think of the pain you speak of vis-a-vis FOG, and the comparable pain and discomfort of others experiencing the dark night of the soul, as the inevitable growing pains which go along with the journey.


 Having had your moment in spiritual evolution, why can you not allow others to chart their own journey? It is unnecessary to function as the over-controlling, over-protective parent, when others are behaving like "self-deceived fools." Each of us has the assurance of the UB that in our journey to the truth, we are guided by the requisite skypilot; the eternally present individual Thought Adjuster. This it seems to me is more than sufficient guidance, more than sufficient protection from evil. So what accounts for the persistent efforts of D. Kantor, among others, to run interference? Is there some inadequacy or inability of Thought Adjusters among those smitten by the TM? Does it not border on evil to suggest to others that their faith is inadequate, that God will fail to guide and protect those who take risks in seeking to do his will?


 All of us, in our struggle to progress toward deep sky, must be allowed to commit error - to blunder - of our own free will. This allowance for human limitations is the path which even God must follow; to allow individual human beings to learn by doing and thereby seek the path to his presence without loss of freedom. Each of us is ever in danger of creating our own little cult of one, when we relinquish our ability to be influenced by others, when we attempt to control the freewill choices of other individuals, or when in any fashion, we seek to limit the framework and source of another's faith. "Read the UB only," is too close to "read the Bible only" for me. I can trust that the same God and the same Christ inhabit all faiths, whether by names familiar or not. God and Christ are present eternally, throughout creation, and may be encountered daily in an infinity of expressive forms; we are not limited to the UB for this experience. When you say that the UB has a powerful effect on unconscious, it is imho, important to remember that it is _not_ the UB which has this power. It is _only_ a book. He who sent it speaks through that book, just as he spoke through the New Testament, the Old Testament, and many other inspired works, whether printed or otherwise. Shall I speak against the TM and risk interfering with the Master's outworking? I think not. So when you seek to limit the presence of the TM in our lives, as you most certainly attempt to do on Urantial imo, and insist that we experience the revelation only from the UB framework, you attempt to control the behavior and destinies of your Urantial kin "for their own good;" such an experience can be crippling for controlled and controller alike. Each of us must seek God alone, and along our own chosen pathway as an expression of individual freedom.


 You comment that "the UB is going to be extremely controversial" during the coming times of spiritual awakening on Urantial. Not necessarily. There are five billion people on planet Urantia, and only 400,000 copies of the UB in print. Many of these are in libraries, where they sit unread most of the time. I use the local library's copy when I loan my personal copy to new readers. As near as I can tell, since it is never missing from the shelf, I am the only patron regularly checking out the book. Human beings have an abundance of opportunity to indulge their taste for cultism from sources other than the UB. From the POV of center-of-the-road Christianity, the UB is just another channelled hoax, whose only earned superlative is for the brilliance of its' blasphemy. I have frequently had the experience of seeing highly intelligent persons reject the UB on perfectly rational grounds. They just don't buy it. When new readers become aware of, and turned off by, the high level of conflict present in the Urantia "movement," from the lawsuit against Kristen Maahera, to the FOG event, to the rumors surrounding the events on Diversey Street, and now the TM, it threatens to subvert any opportunity the UB may have to _become_ influential, and hence controversial. As things stand now, the UB is virtually without influence in the realm of human religion, when compared against mainstream Christianity for instance, whose adherents comprise over half of the human race. There is no doubt in my mind that should Michael decide that the UB's opportunity to influence human spiritual development _has_ been lost, that he will not remain locked into its' promotion, but will simply move on to other more viable alternatives. This is an approach taken by many teachers; try something, and keep it if it works, discard it if it doesn't. Therapists work that way too.


 None of which is to say that I consider the UB in any way discredited. But it is clearly at risk for same, in terms not of the truth it contains, which is inviolable, but in terms of human perception. And our contentious ways on Urantial contribute in that direction. When our preoccupation with the UB grows to consume all of our attention, it is difficult to grasp that literally billions of our fellow humans go about their daily business, utterly unaware of the raging temptest in a teacup, regarding the TM. Is their salvation dependent on the resolution of this conflict? Hardly. Those whose attention is captured by some aspect of the Urantian movement, could easily be distracted by all of the "white noise" with which we surround our conduct of things spiritual, become turned off, and seek God elsewhere. Where they will surely find him, for is he not ever-present?


 Be that as it may, I would not propose any change in conduct on Urantial save for a growth in respect for the feelings of others, and an avoidance of verbal assault. In the absence of violence, all will feel safe to participate in the gradual outworking of the present revelation. In this one matter David, I am in complete agreement with you. You seem to believe that we are presently in the midst of a great historical/spiritual event, imo perhaps including the imminent return of Christ Michael to Urantia. In long delayed respnse to Thea's question, "what is to become of Urantial?" My hope is that we would retain all our present points of discussion. In time, the truth or not of the TM will out. If it proves to be of human orgin, its' effects on human destiny will be short-lived. If it is of God, it will not be disposed of by the likes of us.


 It is my sincere hope that in my comments to you, my deep respect for you and for your abilities and accomplishments in the Urantian movement, rings through, loud and clear. I'll not further belabor my objections to your "style." For what you have taught me thus far about matters spiritual and Urantian, please accept my gratitude. For what the future may bring, you turn on your radio, and I'll turn on mine.



2 Aug 1993    Thea Hardy       Re: Turn your radio on

Subject: Re: Turn your radio on In-Reply-To: [9308021141.AB05921@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dear David L.,


 I thank you more than I can say for your words. I refer less to comments regarding recent difficult events here on Urantial than to your larger understanding of revealing Michael's religion to this planet. It reminds me to mention again, if I have done so before, that although I think the UB is the best revelation running, truth can be found elsewhere and we are asked to seek it. I have never felt that the book in and of itself was meant for anyone. It seems plain to me, by virtue of vocabulary and concept depth, that it a teachers' training manual. (Human teachers) The truth contained is what is for everyone, that truth that Michael proclaimed when he said that we are all children of a loving God and thereby we are to love one another as brothers and sisters of the great celestial family. I do not try to preach the book. I never really have. I try to advance the truth he taught, to the best of my ability. Certain people come to a place where they want to know where my ideas come from (I will often say things like "A book I read says..." or "My religion teaches..." Usually, by the time they ask about the book, their interest is intense enough that they go on to become readers. As you say, it is only a book. What matters is the truth contained. And the UB has no monopoly on that. One of the thrills for me in this human life is to speak to others of differing religions and find what we share and talk about that. I have had incredible talks with my former chinese teacher (himself chinese) about what he and his culture believe. He has asked about the Urantia book and is very interested in the concepts. We often talk about the concepts and truths and get very excited in the process. I could not have these experiences if I were not open to his ways and his metaphors. I try to remember that Jesus would talk using another person's metaphors/ language and then try to amplify on the truths that he found. It is impossible for me to do more than humble beginnings of this sort of thing, but it is a spectacular and thrilling challenge. To my knowledge, Michael did not say "preach the Urantia book" but rather the truth about God and our family relationship. I think that I love and honor the Urantia book as much as any; I believe it. Nevertheless, I believe even more in the capacity of my brothers and sisters to reach the Father no matter what routes they take. And I want to help them as much as I can.


 Thanks again, David L., for your words. And please, feel free to keep your byte count up!!




6 Aug 1993    Matthew Rapaport              Getting away from emotion

Subject: Getting away from emotion


 Hoping the conference was all everybody expected it to be...


 David K. I don't think you are in the minority here with respect to your over all view of the TM. I think the crowd is pretty well mixed, and I certainly agree with you on the whole, I'm just not carrying around the emotional baggage you seem to have. First of course I was not sucked in to the FOG maelstorm by Vern G., and second I stopped reading T/R transcripts months ago because they occasioned much the same reaction in me as they do to you.


 I think you pretty well spelled out the overall implications of the structure of the TM (with respect to there being discrete "pipelines to God", a new dogmatism, etc.), but I am also cognizant that people like Thea are nothing if not sincere and following their heart/spirit-leading to the best they can. While that occasions some conflict between the dictates of friendship/civility (grace) and the need to make clear the imports of the potential error involved, I don't care any more if I'm not the watch dog of the Urantia Movement. No one ever listened to me (least of all you) when I did play that role, and I don't believe that the TM will have any more lasting impact on the movement (I'm talking 5 to 10 years from now) then did Vern or the Urantia Massage Parlor. No let me state that a little differently. These things may have some lasting impact on the Urantia Movement as it is currently constituted, but will have little impact on the near or long term relationship between the Urantia Book and the world as a whole.


 Otherwise, I continue to enjoy this discussion and hope we can move it to other subjects that are not so directly connected to the TM.


 So long for now...


 matthew rapaport Philosopher/Programmer At Large KD6KVH mjr@netcom.com 70371.255@compuserve.com




7 Aug 1993    David Kantor      Some Responses 8/7/93

Subject: Some Responses 8/7/93


 Saturday, August 7, 1993 Lafayette, California


 Good weekend, Friends...


 Matthew;


 I appreciated you note and your perspective is well taken. I am coming to the conclusion that there is nothing to be gained from confronting the TM and I have far better things to do than to keep reading transcripts or working to rationalize the whys and wherefors of the TM. I don't recall ever hearing you address the issues during the FOG maelstrom, but I'm sure I would have ignored it, having constructed some pretty strong defenses against any critical assessment of our position. And so it goes...


 You questioned a comment I made in an earlier post re using spiritual techniques to meet psychological needs. I was merely advocating the use of "appropriate technologies". While I recognize some integration and overlap, i.e. genuine psychological and even physical healing which can occur as a result of spiritual factors, I would in general maintain that it is most efficient to identify the *real* problem and apply techniques most appropriate to the domain of being in which the ground of the problem exists. I would suspect that even in the case of physical healing as a result of spiritual effort, the real ground of the "dis-ease" was spiritual rather than physical. (Not to take a Christian Science position here and say that *all* physical disease is a manifestation of a spiritual problem, but I hope you know what I mean.) Perhaps what I am trying to say is that if we have problems with specific ways of relating to the outer world, one of our options is to simply let our relationship with God take up as much of our consciousness as possible. While this may relieve the distress of inadequate adaption to the world as we find it, it does not provide us with tools for constructively dealing with our shortcomings -- it simply isolates us from them to a degree. Imo, this is what the ascent through the psychic circles is about; we abide in our relationship with God, but we still deal with issues of building competence in matters of relating to the outer world. We *can* have our cake and eat it too!

8 Aug 1993    Sara L. Blackstock    Reflections on Montreal from S

Subject: Reflections on Montreal from Sara


 From: Sara Blackstock, Concord, Calif., 8/8/93


 My experience is that women do not seem to have such a tendency to clothe themselves or others in uniforms. The TM is a good example: when our women's corp in the Golden Gate area meet, there could be several "uniformed teams" if we wanted to look at it that way, but regardless of our particular bents or opinions on TM, FEF, etc., we seem to go past that without a blink of an eyelash and BE WITH EACH OTHER AS WOMEN AND CHILDREN OF OUR MOTHER/FATHER. We usually know who believes this and that, but we don't draw battle lines or go for goals or score. Is this a male phenomenon?


 Concerning what I felt I was observing about the reactions to the TM phenomenon: the first two days, it seemed like there was a lot of interest and sharing and questioning - "Is this going on in your area"? etc., but after about two days, I personally did not really discuss it or hear much about it. I don't know if the TM people went into their own privacy, but there seemed to be a real lack of interest in it in general. Even in the general council meeting, it was real low key, the general attitude apparently being that the TM could be looked upon as an interfaith excercise within the UB movement. Some of the General Council meeting seemed to be focused on the prevalent potential fast becomming a reality of the true internationalization of this revelation. There were several people at the conference from Russia, from England, form Estonia, from Mexico and probably other places. The Finnish and Spanish translations are out and about, and it is felt that especially the Spanish translations will begin to make an impact very soon in the movement.


 

10 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM IC93

Subject: TM IC93


 Hi guys, I finally made it back from my extended vacation and trip to IC93. It was all great. My house was robbed while I was away but they only got material goods. Ha! Joke's on them. I haven't had an opportunity to read all the mail that piled up over the last two weeks but I thought I would give you a short synopsis of my perspective of the IC93 and how it looked from a TM perspective. Everyone I talked to was, if not already into the Teaching Mission, at least civil about it. And most were interested. One impromptu meeting for the TM had 60 participants (out of 600 to 700 attending the conference, that's not bad) and we all joined hands and had the best prayer session I've had in awhile. I had a pretty good meditation as well. Many people who expressed skepticism of the phenomena (a natural reaction IMO) told me that if it rejuvenated interest in prayer and an attempt to walk a higher path then it really didn't matter if it was really celestially inspired. And the fruits were evident, IMO. Anyway I felt like some bridges were built. I would be interested in hearing what others thought about it. By the way the Canadians are also experiencing this TM phenomena, which I found interesting. I got to meet all kinds of great people. Bob and Sara Blackstock were there and were really great - glad I finally got to talk to them face to face. Leo Elliot was there and he went to a baseball game that we attended. It was great to meet Meredith Sprunger - I can see why he is a preacher, he has a great presence and a booming voice. Sonny Schneider was there well representing the Hawaii group and I don't think I ever saw him without a huge grin on his face. In fact, he was the primary organizer of the TM meetings during the conference. Duane Faw and his wife, Lucille, were there - good to see them again. Jim Cleveland from the Cincinati group spoke publically about his experiences with the TM and how it has taken away his cynical streak and given him a new insight and joy - I liked that. Patije Mills and her husband, Roy, were there. My best buddy, Roland, from Woods Cross was there. The guy can shine the Father's light as well as anyone I know and he and I went around trying to meet new folks. Great fun. Earnest Moyer was there and he didn't have horns!!! He was very pleasant to me and I to him. Byron Belitsos was there hosting a panel on cultism and the revelation. I don't know if Byron knows how influential he is, but he is very well respected - especially considering his involvement with the TM, a fact he openly admitted to those in attendance. In fact, one guy on the panel, Marvin Gawryn (a former FOGGER) told me that he had begun daily stillness practice and found it very rewarding. He also told me that he could see the fruits of the TM although he was unwilling to embrace it at this time. No problem. Diane Lebrecque (a translator from Canada and an extremely bright light) was great as she emphasized the right brain function of living the revelation. There are more people per capita in Montreal reading the UB than anywhere else in the world and she is one of the reasons why. She has three TV shows that she appears on to discuss the UB. I also got to see Pat & Mickey Schomas and Karen and Bob Day from Naperville. Karen and Bob celebrated their first wedding anniversary. Susan Kimsey from Half Moon Bay, California was there and taught me all about flower essences, which, of course, I was very skeptical of but tried them out and will give them a shot. What the heck. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. The list goes on and on. If I left someone out (and I did) it is no reflection on them, it is just getting late. Suffice it to say it was a wonderful meeting and I can't wait for the next one.


 Let me end this with a short posting given to me by Sonny.


 "Begin each new day with a greeting to your Father, our Heavenly Creator. Feel His life giving presence. Feel His warmth and love surround you. Fill yourself with His peace, receive Him in you heart, let His love open you to be receptive to everyone passing your way. Let His light radiate within you, let this light shine out and brighten the faces of all who may behold the reflection you present. Begin each day aligning yourself with your Indwelling Spirit, attempt to be more Godlike, portray your true self. Each day brings opportunity to grow, to share, to show your thanks, to reveal the many blessings which abound in your life. Begin each day with this "turned on and tuned in" attitude. It can be contagious. It is wonderfully easy to give, a true joy to receive, to share with everyone you meet. Their day and yours will be made better by it. "Give me your biggest smile; make my day. You are ever faced with choice; what shall you share with a stranger, your friend, your neighbor? Begin each day filling yourself with the love of God, let His love saturate your soul, retain this feeling, pass it easily and enjoyably to each one you greet on your way. These small, easy to do, fun to experience pleasures are like taking spiritual vitamins, actively nourishing your soul, promoting growth in your spirit and in the spirits of those who are receptive to your outpourings. We wish these wonderful practices become your habit."

11 Aug 1993   Byron Belitsos      IC93 reflections

Subject: IC93 reflections


 I had low expectations for IC93 and was very pleasantly suprised at what came off -- especially the inspiring morning worship sessions, which featured among other things excellent multimedia presentations to aid in worship, including visionary full-motion video pieces which added a wonderful touch.


 These morning sessions just made my day! Sometimes I was led to tearful moments of joy and praise. All this seemed to be a big advance in the development of a "new cultism" of the revelation, but left me concerned as to whether the "new and higher symbolism" being projected by the Fellowship is someday going to crowd-out the efforts of other, independent religious groups within the body of the readership who may want to develop their own self-generated "cult" practices, rituals, symbols in an atmosphere of freedom and tolerance.


 IMHO, the Fellowship has no business (in the long run) becoming a "religion" as such or in conducting religious worship as such, especially with its *secular* constitution which does not safeguard or even recognize the the religious rights of individual believers or congregations (see pp 1762-3). Unfortunately, FEF's evolution is awkwardly moving that way -- and this is admittedly resulting in some inspiring short-term manifestations. But there is still time to alter this direction so that the Fellowship becomes a clearinghouse and enabler for independent religious, educational, literary, etc. efforts of others around the planet. It should not hold power, it should em-power.


 Regarding TM reactions, I somehow assumed that I would be faced with multiple David Kantor's driving by in the hallways shooting at TMers. Instead I found that the wider UM is not anything like Urantial in this sense. I found that many were completely uninformed about the TM and had no opinion either way. It is strange to watch how poorly news about controversial issues travels within the readership, and there is little that can be done until responsible and independent news organizations come into being. I hope that Urantial might some day evolve in that direction. As a member of the Fellowship's Publication Committee, I can guarantee you that with its conservative, old-school approach, the controversial news (such as the Maahera case, the UF's book sales policy, the TM, etc.,) will NOT get reported.


 The fellowshipping opportunites of the conference were superb, as usual. It was a delight to see that apostate Leo Elliott. There was Fred Harris, employee of the social architects. Karen Day with her bright refreshing personality. Sara and Bob too, but I didn't get near enough time with you Sara. Sonny keeping the action moving for the TMers. And dozens of old friends not yet connected to the Nets, many of whom I only see at these magnificent conferences.


 BTW, David K., what you said in tonight's message about Marvin Gawryn seems true (I roomed with him). But I was delighted at his interest in engaging in what he called "interfatith dialogue" with TMers. He asked to sit in on some TM sessions in just that spirit -- I don't know if he actually did however. This kind of tolerance and sympathetic interest in "alien" religious experiences is exemplary in my view....


 In the subtext of several speeches, notably that of FEF president Steve Drier, were some disparaging remarks on TMism. Meredith Sprunger directly equated it with a species of "emotionalism". I did not notice any substantive activity of TMers in the public eye except for impromptu remarks in study sessions. TMers networked with one another of course, but its impact was (at least for me) diluted by the vast universe of other activities beckoning me. Our councils are developing slowly; they need time to evolve. But the main thing as Fred always says is to spread the love and kindness spontaneously outward always.


 The wider readership is an incredibly enlightened and interesting group. Being with them helped me put the TM in better perspective and to see that it simply must be in more extensive dialogue with the wider movement -- both "sides" have much to gain! The broadening and correcting influence of more long-time, experienced readers would add much to the richness of the Teaching Mission and I really hunger for this. The clarifying influence of the UB is needed to understand and put into perspective what our Teachers are doing and saying.


 Paradoxically, it is important for this reason that TMers to have our own meetings and meeting places on a fully independent basis -- something we really must pursue in the future. For all its disappointments, the Naperville experience was more rewarding to me as a way to network with other TMers and to compare notes. We are still somewhat fragmented now, and we need to have a goal of speaking with a harmonious voice in the public arenas of the movement. We need to enable "interfaith dialogue" with UBers and others. Then there won't be a "we" to be concerned about.


 In this sense, I felt that the TM was not clearly distinguishable from the larger body of readers at IC93, and so our essential message was lost or absorbed in the marvellous outpouring of spirit and love and creativity that was manifesting everywhere. So from one point of view the absence of direct TM influence doesn't really matter, does it?! There really is a wonderful implicit unity in the readership that transcends differences, fostered of course by out celestial friends and influences. Perhaps the mysterious reading of an apocryphal "message from Michael" on the final evening symbolized this unity. Yes, Michael's presence was manifesting in all directions. This was one of the most spiritual sharing events I have ever experienced.




12 Aug 1993   Leland Foster       some comments

Subject: some comments


 Dear People,


 Finally getting around to respond to some of the posts on the list from last and this month. Sorry to just lurk most of the time, but I get lazy from time to time.


 I am still unconvinced about the validity of the TM, but I have been enjoying the posts about getting along with others who have differing beliefs. My own two cents: If the TM is for real it will eventually "prove" itself. If it is from the imagination of it's participants it will eventually fade from the scene, only to be found in pockets of scattered groups. So I don't worry much about it.


 I do feel that the TM is a valid part of the exploring for a new cult, the testing of the realm of religious experiance. I try to use the same test on all new phenomena that I used in accepting the UB, tenative acceptance for a period to let it's true spiritual flavor come through, followed by rejection (for me), or more firmly accepting it. This has been dificult for me due to my natural reluctance against "messages from on high", which you may have picked up from my previous posts so long ago.


 As for worship, I tend to shy away from public forms of worship due to my antipithy towards "organized religion" I developed from my contact with such that was anything but Beauty, truth or goodness. I do however think the rememberance supper as I understand it is a good way for group activities to opperate. I think the rememberance supper should be anything but a ceremony. It should be a good time to renew friendships and make new friends, all of whom are brought together by our common love of our creator. If someone should feel moved to offer a prayer or some other form of worship durring, before or after the occasion, well that would be nice. But planning the worship sounds too much like the things in christianity that I avoid.


 Who was the shortest man in the bible? I'll give you a hint. It wasn't Nehimia (Knee hi Mia), or Bildad the Shuhite (Shoe Hight).


 

12 Aug 1993   Thea Hardy       Re: IC93 reflections

Subject: Re: IC93 reflections In-Reply-To: [9308120221.AB09872@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Dear Byron,


 I really do appreciate your sharing your IC93 experiences with such openness and depth. With input from those of you who attended, I am getting a better sense of the event than I usually have had in past times when Urantial or its ilk was unavailable to me. I really come to appreciate just what a wonderful tool we have here on the net when things like this occur.


 One point that you made which I personally believe is extremely important - the TM must continue and increase its being guided by the Urantia book. For me, as a longtime reader, making any real sense of the TM without the book's guidance would be impossible. The thought of the TM without sufficient guidance from the book is frankly almost scary to me. There is enough room for distortion as is, us humans being precisely that - humans. I feel so strongly about this that there are not sufficient words to express my feelings. This is an area where brother Leo would likely think me daft, but I spent a lifetime searching for what I considered the best master pattern of reality I could find. I found it, and although I contin-ue to remain open to any other options, nothing else has ever even come close. To me, the TM is within this option, not outside. If it does not remain within, and corrected by the book's master "plan", it will run into trouble. When I say trouble, perhaps I should be more specific. My concerns run along lines of diluted reality messages, New Age predictions that endlessly fail, too much superstitious woo-woo, distortions of the UB teachings that lead others to discount the UB, negative channelings from individuals who do not have a care to check out their own psychology carefully and cannot distinguish between the internal voices from less than pleasant personal histories rife with evil spirits et al and the voices of the celestials who are always loving and accepting and never abrogate free will choice, never use scare tactics. The same concerns I had about so-called channeling phenomena before I finally accepted this TM. I use the same set of criteria as I ever did. I don't want to say that my criteria are right. I don't want to suggest that we need to have rigid control and some master plan applied in a blanket way to all. But I do think that there are ethics involved here that need to be paid attention to with as much scrupulosity (?) as is humanly possible in order to avoid irresponsibility and worse. The Urantia book is a superb manual to use to guide any activity that one cares to engage in on this planet. It is important to be constantly reading and exploring it, both intellectually and in actual practice. Its guidance is always a part of any important decisions that I make. If I seem hidebound by virtue of these statements, so be it.


 So you see, I am a conservative in my own way, too, and those who find such comments constraining can blast away!


 As far as presentations of spiritual imagery go, I share the concern that the UM not become licensor (spelling on purpose) of this. The concepts in the Urantia book belong to the planet. All outpourings of expression of the Father's truth, beauty and goodness are to be encouraged. If those who bear the roles of censor are sufficiently liberal in their acceptance, there is no problem, but it is so easy to thus inculcate a party line...


 There is that delicate, difficult balance - between excessive restriction and excessive permissiveness. It will never be easy. Attending to the extremes is always easier. But I think we are all called upon to come to a more difficult, middle position, and to continue to think and think and think about this with every choice we make that is involved in it. I think that most of the participants on this net do exactly that. But I do note that the readership at large may have some various folks that tend towards the extremes, as we humans to tend to do if we are not prayerfully watchful of our own processes. There, too, are extremes, ranging from hypervigilence to complete carelessness and lack of self awareness. It is always so much easier to do black and white, to do extremes than middles, but it is that exquisite balance that I believe we are called upon to seek to develop. ANd it is that balance that overcomes the black and white with the rainbow of reality.


 Reality's Rainbow. Yeah.



12 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM Various

Subject: TM Various


 A few musings after reflecting on the day's postings:


 David L.: Great story!! That's what I call synchronicity (a Jungian concept). Lately I have been paying more attention to "coincidences" and there seem to be more of them (or is it just because I am watching). Yesterday I was out on the bridge for my nightly meditation when a lady came up suddenly inquiring about any information I might have on the whereabouts of her dog, "Elmo". I told her that I would keep my eyes open and got the description of the dog and the lady's name and address. On a whim I told her as she walked off that I was talking to God anyway so I would ask Him to keep an eye out as well. She no doubt thought I was crazy. Today I walked out to get the mail and a dog with Elmo's description walked right by me. Elmo! I grabbed the dog and put him in the car and headed for the lady's house. On the way I told God that I was really impressed with the speed in which He found Elmo and I laughed as I contemptated her joy. When I got there she and her two girls ran out of the house very excited. Well, as it turned out it wasn't Elmo, but it looked just like him. They appreciated my attempt and I was still able to render a service and show my concern so everyone gained. They found the owner. I'm still looking for Elmo.


 Steve Sonntag: Welcome to urantial. I hope this virtual study and discussion group can fill the void you describe. It is hard "sell" the Urantia Book to most people. It is easier to incorporate its concepts into your life and let your life be the teacher. You will also see discussion on the Teaching Mission on this board. There is a phenomena that has spread around the U.S. and elsewhere that we call the Teaching Mission or TM. It involves certain persons (most of whom are UB readers) who report "hearing" celestial teachers. The teachers are allegedly part of the second phase of the Fifth Epocal Revelation of which the UB is the first phase. The teachers claim to be in the service of Michael, under the direct supervision of Machiventa Melchizedek, in order to commence the "correcting time" to begin the long climb of this planet into the ages of light and life. This mission was purported commenced upon the adjudication of the Lucifer rebellion wherein Lucifer was unrepentant and has become as if he never was. Pretty wild, eh? Of course there is great discussion about the validity or falsity of this movement. Many on this BB take no stock in the TM. Others believe it after inspecting the numerous transcripts of what the teachers are saying. Many take a wait and see attitude and watch for the fruits of the TM correctly stating that if it is true it will endure. If not, it won't. Leland Foster expressed that sentiment well in his most recent posting. I say read the transcripts and let the Spirit of Truth interpret them for you. As a service (some would say a nusiance) I have been regularly posting short excerpts from lessons the teachers have delivered for those who don't have access to the full transcripts. Feel free to read them if you like. I include the "TM" intro in the titles of my postings so as not to offend those who choose not to read them. The postings I excerpt are from many various locations (there are at least 55 teachers actively teaching groups that I am aware of). I don't describe the location, date or teacher because I have had experiences that tell me that such is unproductive (I am glad to tell anyone privately if they want to know) and because, as Dan Massey said today, you need to read them for the truth or falsity based upon their content, not upon the supposed celebrity of the alleged author. Truth is found in many places. This same concept applies to the UB. Many people can accept the substantive truth but are put off by the supposed celestial source. Anyway, that's the long explanation of what I've been up to.


 

13 Aug 1993   Karen Day       Farewell for a short bit

Subject: Farewell for a short bit


 There were Teaching Mission (TM) meetings each night. I only managed to attend one meeting where I happened to transmit Machiventa (I had not expected to do that going into the meeting but the group went into a meditation and opened the floor up to transmission by whoever was willing-- I was very hesitant to participate but felt I should do my part and once I started to respond to Mach's "impressing" on me, it went okay and I was very moved by the experience-- I felt a tremendous amount of love-energy pouring out through me from him to the group, and others present said they felt this too. I was so moved that I went into the meditation room (there was a special room set up for meditation during the conference) and did some "hot pen" writing-- what came out was lot's of talk about Father's love-- it was a great experience.) I also met Roland from Utah and Sonny-- thanks Sonny for organizing the TM meetings.


 The TM "movement" was, as others have commented, fairly low key. There was just so much else going on, so many people who all have various ways of approaching their religious lives. I heard from several people who have been using the "hot pen" technique for many years (people said there was a workshop at Snowmass). This involves just going into meditation (getting quiet and comfortable) with a pen and paper pad in hand (or sitting at the computer), clearing your mind (or focusing on Father or other spiritual thoughts), and just writing down (or typing) whatever comes to mind. At first it may be a lot of garbage or "noise", including worried thoughts, trivial thoughts, etc., but with practice the words you write will start to take on the tone of a higher stream of consciousness. This is your Thought Adjuster working through you, perhaps talking to you directly or tapping you into a higher source. At least, this is how I understand it. There are many who practice this with good results. Patije from Florida has been doing this for many years and has just recently started to share her writings-- "for what they're worth" (she makes no pretenses--she told me she wants others to get what value they can out of the messages they contain-- and they do contain very beautiful messages).


 Well, I could go on and on about the conference, but there's just too much for me to share for now. It was especially special for me and my husband because Aug. 1 was our 1st anniversary. So we also squeezed in some celebrating while we were there.



13 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM Intro Part 2

Subject: TM Intro Part 2


 To continue to introduce the Teaching Mission to the new members of this net, I would like to post of few additional excerpts. But first I would like to say goodbye to Karen Day for the short time it takes for her to get readjusted and back on line. Hurry back. Steve Sonntag, nice description of your surroundings. Keep on with the books - medicine needs enlightened practitioners, as does every profession. Byron, it is good (I guess) that you are interested in posting the more intellectually oriented TM excerpts. Frankly, all the intellectual discussions and excerpts don't do much for me. I like the synchronicity stories (thank you David L.) and the lessons for incorporating the UB into our daily lives. That's where I need the growth and that's how I try to plant seeds, much like Thea explained - first to see where the person you are talking to is coming from and then approaching them from their own perspective. Some of the listening exercises I posted earlier focused on that. Anyway, those who share your intellectual bent may be interested in those types of TM lessons. I guess this is a good time to mention that there are literally thousands of TM transcripts and the excerpts I choose to post are very much influenced by my preferences. Don't think all the transcripts focus only on the material I post. There is much variety. Some is more truth filled than others (IMHO). Since people are involved in the transmission part of the equation, there are clearly errors, etc. Many people see those problems and feel that the entire phenomena must be bogus. I try to read with the Spirit of Truth and see what nuggets I can find. So much for my soap box. Now for a few excerpts. I am going to experiment tonight with naming teachers, cities and dates as Byron has done. I don't know if I will continue this practice, but it may be of interest to those new members of the net who don't realize the number of different locations from whence these come.


 "The mission here is to help people understand that each act of goodness and kindness that they express to another is the basis for great change in this world. We hope that by establishing direct contact with people, they will become convinced of the strength of these small acts." -Jared, Santa Rosa, California, 11/14/92


 "It is time to literally do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Do not intellectualize this any more...It is time to make it real, it is time to live it." -Welmek, Indianapolis, Indiana, 9/23/92


 "What is it we wish to impart? It is simple, and I will repeat - that God is a beneficent parent. That we are all equally His children. That because we belong to the same family, we should love our brothers and sisters as we love ourselves and as God loves us. That is the rule, love one another. Worship God. Recognize God in other humans and respect it. That is the greatest and simplest truth in all of Nebadon. That we have free will. That we may choose God and, when we do, we have the potential to be eternal...These are the simple truths." -Rayson, Los Angeles, California, 8/16/92


 "Enjoy the human aspect of living as well as your newly growing spiritual awareness. Enjoy the sunsets and the stars in the sky. Enjoy the fall foliage. Enjoy the excited cries of young children. See the good in those who seemingly have no goodness. For when you make this your goal, to always see good, you help them to see the good also in themselves. You must mirror these concepts for your brothers and sisters who have not understood, have not felt love, have not known that they, too, are worthy, that they, too, have the spark of the Father within them." -Daniel, Pocatello, Idaho, 10/11/92


 "This is a great season on your planet. Many people have beliefs, religious traditions, ceremonies, methods, that they practice this time of the year. They will come to know...that there is more. More will recognize more will come to know [that] we are here. They will begin to recognize something is happening. In some places the air about them will be alive with an energy that they are not accustomed to. They will notice something but they won't understand what it is. When you find yourself in a position to enlighten, do so gently. Don't confront them. Lead them gently through their faith, not yours." -Aflana, Sarasota, Florida, 3/5/92


 "You see, when we are about the Father's business, this is an example of God's love in action. God's love is always moving, dynamic. It has no real boundaries and it simply is given out. Sometimes when we are afraid, when we are overcome by fear, it is shot out of our consciousness. So, my children, we must learn how to keep the channel open to receiving this divine flow. Occasionally we have a glimpse of universe reality. God's love, if allowed, can remove conflict, blocks to flow of consciousness. God's love in action is how we react to our brothers and sisters...Love in action is touching a friend on the shoulder at the right moment, a smile to a stranger, even holding a door for someone. Be not afraid in your lives to show forth this love. Only good will come to you." -Oren, Naperville, Illinois, 8/10/92


 "Why not begin today, right now, in a new and concentrated effort to serve our Father and to serve on another. Each morning rededicate yourself to this promise and, in time, you will find a renewed self." -Andrew (teacher to the Pittsburg group) while visiting Indianapolis, 9/23/92


 Hope you enjoyed this string of excerpts. Let me know if posting the teacher, city and date is more interesting or if you prefer only the substance of the messages.

 -Fred Harris



14 Aug 1993   Dennis Shields      Can any good thing come from c

Subject: Can any good thing come from channeling from Sonny Schneider


 Greetings fellows,


 Just getting settled back in after 10 wonderful days at IC93 and trying to catch up to all the latest postings.


 Hal: I shared a jet to Detroit with Gard Jameson, who is a member of the General Council. He said that the Council decided to "build no walls". No area coordinators will be rejected due to their affiliations with the Teaching Mission or any other religious groups. The only exception was the rejection of Thern Blackburn, due to his inability to refer a new U.B. reader to an `only' U.B. reading group, as all groups in Thern's area are now T.R. groups, according to Thern, (according to Gard).


 Byron: I also was very moved by the Conference s morning presentations. I found them very fulfilling to my inner need to share worshipping our Father with a large group. The musical presentations and group sing alongs were quit overwhelming at times. My thanks to all those dedicated folks who put forth the energy to bring these programs to fruition. A video tape of these presentations and many other aspects of IC93 will soon be available, I highly recommend getting a copy! Also Byron, though the T.R.'s at the conference were rather low key on the surface, much networking was accomplished that will go a long way towards future sharing. I personally passed out 40 diskettes with 400K of the Kona Transcripts, and 400K of the Lessons of LorEl, plus 20 hard copies. Also many folks signed up for more information or to share future T.M. material.


 For me, the one on one sharing of the joys and growth we were all experiencing was the highlight of the conference. I could have gone on forever living in this daily continous sharing of God's light. This conference truly had an atmosphere of Morontial Reality.


 We had a total of 5 T.R. meetings. The largest was on 8/2/93 with over 60 persons attending. My favorite meeting was on 8/3/93 pm., even though it was the smallest meeting with only 12 attending, (many where out exploring Quebec). It was a very special treat to hear the many teachers who spoke that night share the joys of their own celestial conference in conjunction with our mortal conference. They encouraged us to network and spread the good news of our Family of God. Some recordings where made of these last two meetings, and hopefully will be available soon. I'll let you know. I would also like to add that the Transcripts of Kona and LorEl went to France, Porta Rico, and to Russia with Love.


 Thanks again to the Fellowship for their help and cooperation in supplying rooms and notice facilities to those interested in the Teaching Mission. They were continuously friendly and truly helpful.


 Thanks also are due to the Quebecois who not only did the ground work for the hotel facilities, but where ever present to help in whatever came up. Did you know that they are active in presenting the U.B. on radio and Television weekly!?! I hear that they number in the many hundreds now. One complaint heard from them during the conference was the none availability of the French language edition of the U.B. Certainly hundreds are needed immediately! Can anyone help?


 I was moved by the spirit of sharing at IC93 to seek to outreach the U.B. and the T.M. in any way possible, so a `Hawaiian Reflections Newsletter' is now a potential possibility( at least one issue ). Through this newsletter I plan to share current information of the activities of U.B. readers and the Teaching Mission participants. Anyone interested in participating, please write to me at: Sonny Schneider, P.O.Box 2159, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, 96745. or call 808-323-2866. Any subject will be considered.


 Aloha, and God Bless you all, your groups, and Families. Sonny (Can any good thing come from Channeling?) Schneider.


 P.S. I was asked by many how do I get myself out of the way so that I can allow the teachers to come through me? My answer was that we were an intricate part of the proposes of bringing the message to fruition, and it was our words or expressions that allowed the process. Here is a picturization of the process as I see it.


 The four stages of concept transfer.


 1. Seeing the concept presented by your Teachers, Angels, or Thought Adjuster, with your inner superconscious mind's eye.


 2. Superconscious mind receives spiritual concept and presents to personality through mind the most appropriate set of concepts (recognizable / understandable to you) to describe the spiritual concept.


 3. Personality chooses to use mind's choices or substitute with other words or silence.


 4. Chosen words are spoken, written, or typed, by command of the personality.


 Note: The concepts the superconscious presents to personality can come in multiform such as: Music, pictures, feelings, intuitive senses, mathematical expression, athletic creativity, and words.




14 Aug 1993   Thea Hardy       More on the Spirit of Truth

Subject: More on the Spirit of Truth In-Reply-To: [9308141949.AA16325@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 David K., thanks for your interesting discussion of Christianity. I found much that resonated with me, although my perspective on the relationship of the UB and Christianity is not the same as yours.


 Your quotes on the Spirit of Truth were wonderful. There is also the one about whenever you are at the crossroads, the Spirit of Truth will ever speak telling you this is the way. I found the quotes did a good job of expressing exactly what I believe that Fred Harris and others of us mean when we say let the Spirit of Truth sort it out for you. I know from personal experience that the Spirit calls my attention to Michael and his presence. In that presence, and being focussed ever more clearly on his words, his message, it is easier to sort out what in human messages are consonant with Michael's message. The more we seek to know and understand Michael and to live what he taught, the more we are with the Spirit of Truth, and vice versa. I, for one, am willing to trust my brothers and sisters abilities to utilize this Spirit for themselves. I would consider it spiritual trespassing to act as a judge myself on their capabilities in this area.


 I must say that I disagree somewhat with your comparison of sexual libido and a so-called spiritual libido. To me, such an expression would seem to be representative of just the kind of irresponsibility that you referred to in your message, were it not for the fact that I personally welcome this forum as a place where immediate responses from people DO take place, and can be scrutinized in full light. I find a certain element of duplicitousness and hiddenness on occasion when people too carefully plan their words. It is not that I object to thinking through an idea, but there is a lot to be said for thinking through those ideas together, with others to immediately offer valuable feedback, rather than always doing it in private. I welcome the freedom of expression here. We are not, after all, presenting our views to the world at large hereon, and are instead a community united by similar beliefs, a community that can come together and scrape our ideas across each other in the process of shaping them ever more fully towards the truths that we share. Therefore, although I personally find your reference to a spiritual libido that is somehow animalistic and in need of careful control distasteful personally, and I think it contains some distortions that would not be helpful in the minds of those whom we might want to instruct, were we apostles, I welcome your expression, and those of others, in these ways because they are both self-revelatory and fodder for thought and refinement of concept. I think a discussion of your concept would be extremely valuable. If you had thought it through more carefully, perhaps you might not have posted it, and something would have been lost. I am trying to recall if I have ever seen what I would call a truly rash and irresponsible posting on here. In the sense that I believe you mean it, I don't think so. But hey, I am a big pushover in terms of trusting my brothers and sisters, so who can say!!


 One final word on this subject of a spiritual libido... do not mistake me; I do believe that it is possible for a human to become spiritually overbalanced. We ARE humans, and must balance that out while on this planet. But I do not perceive spirituality that is in us as being particularly parallel to animal sexual libido, and although I understand the need to discipline our expressions in many ways and under many circumstances, I often not that we as humans suffer the opposite problems, perhaps not so much in sex life but other areas, of suppression and over-control of expression. More people I know under-utilize their spiritual "drives" than over-utilize them.


 With appreciation for the thoughts and discussion that postings such as yours engender, David.


 

14 Aug 1993   David Kantor      Quick Note to Thea

Subject: Quick Note to Thea


 Hi, Thea...


 My concept of "spiritual libido" was thought through very carefully and I think it is accurate. A major problem in religion is the *socialization* of the religious impulse and avoiding the precipitation of fanaticism. Consider that the adjutant mind spirits 1 through 6 function as relatively independent influences and it is number 7, the Spirit of Wisdom, which integrates and manages them. My contention is that we must learn to facilitate this coordination by the Spirit of Wisdom rather than devise ways to let the Spirit of Worship run rampant through the psyche.


 This is very much analagous to sexual libido in that there is an energy which personality needs to consciously integrate with other energies in order to be manifested in ways which are creative and constructive. If the expression is allowed to occur without integration and management, religious fanaticism inevitably results.


 By twisting my post on the Spirit of Truth to reinforce your position, it is obvious that you were unable to see my viewpoint or grasp the meaning of my criticism of the careless use of this term and you appear to have completely overlooked the important point I was trying to make about the nature of truth as a living reality and our inability to formulate it as a linguistic expression.


 It also strikes me as odd when you laud "freedom of expression" after trashing me for expressing my true feelings about the so-called "teaching mission" hereon. How would you like it, spontaneous and fully expressive of my contempt for this consensual hallucination or carefully thought through in a manner which respects the positions taken by others? Please clarify!


 


 

15 Aug 1993   Thea Hardy       Re: Quick Note to Thea

Subject: Re: Quick Note to Thea In-Reply-To: [9308142219.AA19459@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Ah, David,


 You and I are indeed expressive of diversity! A whole lot of twistin's been goin' on here. It just depends on ones point of view! I take you for sincere. Please take me for sincere as well. Let me try to make one little point again about the S of T... it is the very fact that truth cannot be codified in words etc, including the UB that makes things so tricky in our discussions on Urantial. All we have to work with here are words. Period. To me, it is my experience with the S of T that takes me beyond, behind the words that I read, wherever they are, or hear from others, that helps me to ascertain the truth in the subtext. If we cannot gain truth from any words, then the UB is also suspect. If we can gain truth from words, then words from the TM or other world religions, etc, are also possible sources. We cannot have it both ways. The truth is not the words, it is in the experience we get from the words, that is triggered by the words, based on our entire life experience already with spiritual reality. If the quote about the Spirit of Truth speaking at the crossroads saying "This is the way!" means anything, then we must certainly be able to use the S of T when we are sincerely seeking to ascertain which path is closest to the Father's will. Where I have problems with you, David, is that frankly you seem to think that your interpretations of the UB are self-evident and cast, if not in stone, in something relatively permanent and pertinent particularly to yourself. There are those who I believe to have made as serious a study of the book as yourself, and whose intellects are not in any way inadequate, who have interpretations which do not exactly match yours. For me to interpret the chosen texts about the Spirit of Truth in my own way, and not agreeing with your interpretation, is not, I think, a grievous sin. It is my own honest reaction, and is not callous, nor necessarily shallow. I find your presumption that I have deliberately twisted your words an unfair judgment because it simply is not true. There are those of us in the world who do not consider deliberate twisting in that manner to be consonant with the teachings of the UB. If I have erred, it is with sincerity and not deliberate malice. I hope you will come to understand that this is the case with me, but there is really nothing I can do to make that happen. Except perhaps some time face to face. I would welcome that.


 As to the concept of spiritual libido, I am glad to hear you have thought about it seriously, but I still do not agree with your interpretation, which as far as I understand the purposes of this forum, is my right to do without necessarily being considered anathema. IMHO, neither Freud nor Jung are fully supported by UB concepts of psychology. They both made great and important contributions to our understanding of the human mind and its processes, but it seems to me that it is useful to attempt to move beyond their concepts and to refine and adapt from the book new and fuller constructs of psychology. I simply do not agree that in the main, the influence of the sixth adjutant spirit (and I am not certain this is the only spirit aspect that would have to be taken into account in your spiritual libido theory) will run amok without constant restraint. I reiterate that I see my siblings here having more trouble with under-utilization of their spiritual natures rather than over-utilization. Your position is theoretical, as are all of our interpretations here. And I beg to differ, is all. I had hoped for a discussion more than an attitude that I was deliberately trying to get you. I just do not have these feelings towards you. There may be some on here that feel this way, but I am not one.


 To others out there, I hope that you will not be dismayed enough by this latest round to not post on this issue. I was looking forward to a frank discussion of whether or not others of you see this idea of a spiritual libido in need of restraint as a position that you feel/ think fits with the UB or not. And I hope that you will post your opinions in any case.


 You may have already. I did not read all the mail before responding!


 What a frisky forum we have here, folks! At least we cannot be accused of being indifferent! And that is valuable in itself.


 Peace, David, peace. But that does not mean I will not post my honest opinions, even as you do.




15 Aug 1993   Pj Seremjian       winning combinations (fwd)

Subject: winning combinations (fwd)


 Dave, in response to your "Comments of the Week" post:


 Spiritual libido?? My, you've just taken the two things I think about most (sex & God) and put them together in one construct! How incredibly convenient! ;) I like the idea, but it falls short of being a good comparison, in that restraint of libido may be more *meaningful*, but certainly not more *satisfying*. As for moral integrity extending to thoughts, well heck no!! Don't you watch television?? You should hear what comes out of these people's mouths! Listen to Dice Clay once, or Rush Limbaugh! This country was founded on freedom of speech (and religion) and to curtail someones thoughts or self expression is unconscienable [sp], don't you think so? Even if we dont like what comes out of peoples faces!


 Regarding the Spirit of Truth as it referred to Fred's "let the Spirit of Truth interpret them for you", it seemed to me the quotes you provided strengthened, rather than weakened the argument against it, imo. It all depends upon how broadly or narrowly you interpret what is there. Some of us have more "peripheral vision" in interpretation than others. I don't think that will ever change. I didn't get the distinction you made between "with" and "to". Why do you feel that is important? It was lost on me, I'm afraid. Perhaps you could elaborate.


 Lastly, I guess I am not real certain what a "fanatic" is. I just don't see how curbing yourself spiritually would ever be beneficial. I see your point in that in an extreme we have a Jonestown or Koresh situation, but theres lots of space between what we do here and that, don't you think so? At what point does religious fervor become fanaticism? When your needle is pegged on your God Intoxication meter? Or when you begin grabbing people by the shirtsleeves to preach to them? Or when you try to convince others to view their spirituality through your eyes only? Seems too fuzzy for me.


 Peg.



15 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM Excerpts

Subject: TM Excerpts


 Dennis S. - You and your group and island will be in our prayers. Good luck. Batten down the hatches. David L. - take care on your trip. Matthew - howdy. good to hear from you. Peg - Good to hear from you as well. Regarding your question on whether a schism will form between the TM vs. No TM crowds, I would hope not. After all, aren't both groups attempting to know and do the Father's will? Aren't both groups sincere seekers? Aren't both groups trying to incorporate the teachings of the UB into their lives? Aren't both groups wackos to the outside world? Of course they are. So what's to argue about - the possibility of celestial instruction? Both believe that celestials have instructed them. When you boil it down, there is very little separating the two. I have seen very few complaints about the substance of the lessons being delivered and a lot of palaver about what I believe are extraneous matters. And it really doesn't matter if you believe in the TM or not. Each is on their own path and will travel it as they see fit. Which brings me to my first quote for the day.


 "There are as many paths to the Father as there are people to walk them." This is a Will quote but I couldn't put my finger on the date. She is the Tallahassee, Florida teacher. I like the tolerance embodied in this thought. She followed up on the tolerance angle the other day.


 "The word "tolerance" should be at the head of any list when one is gathering together ways of action used in the dealings with your fellow men. The world is comprised of a hodgepodge of many individuals with varying degrees of intelligence, manners of speech, actions and beliefs. To successfully integrate with others your ideas and beliefs requires a careful study of the mannerisms with which Jesus walked around through his earthly ministry. His example still stands apart as the best set of guidelines for you to emulate. When one is confronted with an unusual situation or person there is no better base to operate from than that of thinking to yourself, "How would Jesus have handled this?". If only in this exercise you could achieve some regular success, then you will have been much furthered along on the spiritual path. "The many types of people encountered throughout your lifetime, and particularly at such gatherings as were being held last week [IC93 is what she is talking about], present you with an endless variety of opportunities for growth. The manner in which you receive and interact with each individual you encounter enables yo to expand your knowledge and, perhaps, have a direct uplifting effect on that individual as well...The meetings recently sponsored by the Urantia Fellowship group were looked upon with great interest and we feel that it was productive and meaningful for those who were able to attend. I was pleased to have several representatives from our group to be able to attend and to be able to return and share with the others some of the goings on. I also was pleased to be able to attend myself as a first hand observer...Many a chord was struck, although not always apparent. "This comes at a good time, for soon our work will be upstepped again. We will be asking you to pay more attention to your dealings with others whereby more may be touched with the Father's love through you...This is not new. You have been asked to do this before. It is, for most, an ongoing struggle to remain in the constant flow of the Father's love, sharing it with those around you. There are many distractions. We would only ask that you attempt to spend more time in conscious thought and deed as you continue in your work trying to do the Father's will in all that you do. You will accomplish much. It is a work filled with joy. When you have love to give, you also are filled with the love - the loving feeling that must surely fill you to overflowing if you are to have love to pass on. I think you will like the feeling. The Father pours His blessing out over all of you, each and every one. Not only at the given moment, but throughout the day. It only takes a moment to recognize it. Take in all that you can and pass on to others what is left. There will never be a shortage; it is always an abundance. It is the most pleasant work I can imagine. You will be lifted up, filled with the Father's love and joy and, also importantly, you will be filling another, touching another with that love. This is what is required of you in your work. We think you will like it."


 -Will, Tallahassee, Fla. 8/8/93




16 Aug 1993   Byron Belitsos      Replies wk of 8/9

Subject: Replies wk of 8/9


 Thea,


 Thanks for your obviously heartfelt response about the dependence of the TM on the UB as a correction device and as a guide as we continue through the revelatory process. You have catalogued problems, (including "superstitious woo-woo"), that I have directly experienced here in our Land of Oz TM group because our two T/Rs are not very conversant with the UB and our members are mainly new readers. We definitely need to set up a Committee to look into the woo-woo factor. More seriously, I am often sad that so many of the dozens of long-time readers (here locally) remain on the sideliness while a stupendous process of new celestial input is going on just a few miles away. Meanwhile, newly-introduced UB readers now coming to our sessions are basking in an outpouring of love and healing and higher teachings without an adequate context with which to grasp these phenomena. Our group needs the Book-wisdom, the astute questions, the group-process experience of long-time UB readers. (We do have two long-term readers, though). As with Jesus' life in the flesh,the great teachings and healings were bestowed on the "ignorant" masses while many of those so well versed in Scripture missed the point ENTIRELY.


 

18 Aug 1993   fx618@AOL.COM         SPIRITUAL MOONER FINALLY APPRE

Subject: SPIRITUAL MOONER FINALLY APPREHENDED!


 Spiritual Mooner Finally Apprehended! UPI (Urantial Press International)


 This bulletin just in...


 Mr. Fred Harris, alias "Vinnie the Moon" was finally apprehended Saturday Morning, Aug. 14th in Lafayette, CA. He was apparently caught in the act by a Det. Kantor of the Truth Police posting excerpts from the transcripts of the Teaching Mission (a.k.a. TM, a.k.a. the Correcting Times) in plain view for all to read.


 According to Det. Kantor, Harris' acts were clearly acts of adolescent behavior--"uncontrolled spiritual libido". Harris' is being arraigned on multiple charges of "irresponsibility", including 4 counts of "spiritual mooning" and 6 counts of "the laundering of bogus spirituality"


 Sources involved with the investigation stated "his collar (arrest) is a great relief within the concerned intellectual community and his final apprehension the culmination of a month long stake out." Because of Harris' shadowy past as a repeat spiritual libido offender bail has been set at $1 million. As he was led away in cuffs, a defiant Harris vowed that "he would continue posting on Urantial".


 Harris was found with multiple teacher transcripts on his possession and conviction is all but certain. The transcripts were shocking in their explicitness--various sources close to the investigation who have read and studied them have attested that they contain the following major themes corroborated by many different transcripts from locations found all over the U.S.


 1. That we should seek the stillness and come to a greater understanding of the nature of our Father through increased communication with our greatest gift, our Thought Adjuster


 2. That as our understanding of the will of our Father increases, we begin to recognize the spirit reality of our divine heritage as faith sons and daughters of God.


 3. That faith sonship and daughtership creates an urgent call to cosmic duty; to the selfless service of revealing the character of the Eternal to those who thirst for the goodness and mercy of our Father.


 4. That we should seek to evolve from a state of self-consciousness to an increasing state of soul- and God-consciousness and that the paths to do so are many and varied.


 5. That when we have the presence of God within us, we then stand on sacred ground and become an active conduit thru which God can flow outward in the expression of his divine affection, goodness and mercy.


 Postscript: To any new readers of transcripts investigating the TM. Read the transcripts for yourself, talk to those involved with the teaching mission and ask them if the fruits of the spirit have multiplied for them? Ask them if they have become more self-less? Ask them if they have become more God-conscious? Ask them if they are practicing the presence more and attempting to share God's goodness and mercy by actions and intentions? Ask them if they meditate more that ever before? Then meditate on your answers and ask yourself if these further the will of God.


 Cub reporter reporting from San Luis Obispo,CA Jess Thompson

18 Aug 1993   Dan Massey      Witness to the Moonshine

Subject: Witness to the Moonshine


 EDITORIAL (huh?)


 In response to fx618@aol.com:


 Jess, if the five points your summarize from the TM material were the only thing being "transmitted" there would be little or no fuss, hence the truth in the advice of the UB that religion should avoid becoming entangled in politics, social reform, etc. Unfortunately, the paragraphs containing this advice appear in the company of others which some people think say"


 1. Come to your local T/R group to get advice on life problems.


 2. Listen to your local T/R and he/she will explain the UB to you in words of one syllable and sentences of no more than eight words.


 3. Melchizedek is back, and he is pissed!


 4. Sell all your goods and bring the money to Sedona.


 5. Other things too numerous to list...


 When Fred offered to post or not to post the locations, sources, and dates of his texts, my own reaction was to suggest he not post any of it. I assume I am in the minority. My delete key is getting the letters worn off...




18 Aug 1993   Thea Hardy       Re: Witness to the Moonshine

Subject: Re: Witness to the Moonshine In-Reply-To: [9308182105.AA28934@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Hi Dan,


 We are obviously on-line in tandem. Re the points from Jess: 3-5 are not a part of my TM experience, 2 is seldom, and 1 is something people go to the UB for and at our group, no one's problem is ever solved for them, they are given prayerful suggestions such as seeking the Father's will for help in solving their own problems. Wherever the points you mention exist in the TM, with the exception noted above in terms of defining 1, I think I would say that is pretty purely human intrusion. Just a point, not a debate. And BTW, I can live without the teacher quotes on here, too, though for different reasons, I betcha!



18 Aug 1993   Steve Sonntag      humor-junk food for the soul

Subject: humor-junk food for the soul


 The following are actual announcements from church bulletins:


 


 


 1. This afternoon there will be a meeting in the south and north ends of the church. Children will be baptized at both ends.


 2. Tuesday at 4 p.m. there will be an ice cream social. All ladies giving milk, please come early.


 3. Wednesday the Ladies Liturgy Society will meet. Mrs. Johnson will sing "Put Me in My Little Bed" accompanied by the pastor.


 4. Thursday at 5 p.m. there will be a meeting of the Little Mother's Club. All those wishing to become little mothers, please meet the minister in his study.


 5. This being Easter Sunday, we will ask Mrs. Severance to come forward and lay an egg on the altar.


 6. The services will close with "Little Drops of Water." One of the ladies will start quietly and the rest of the congregation will join in.


 7. On Sunday a special collection will be taken to defray the expenses of the new carpet. All those wishing to do something on the carpet, come forward and get a piece of paper.


 8. The ladies of the church have cast off clothing of every kind and they may be seen in the church basement on Friday.


 9. A bean supper will be held Saturday evening in the church basement. Music will follow.


 10. The rosebud on the altar this morning is to announce the birth of David Allen Belser, the sin of Rev. and Mrs. Julius Belser.



19 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM - Guilty as Charged

Subject: TM - Guilty as Charged


 Yes, it is obvious that I am guilty of the sordid crime of dispensing Teaching Mission excerpts to unsuspecting mortals (the first ones are free, then they cost you). Welcome, Jessie Thompson, to the urantial, the only 24 hour 50,000 watt clear channel talk show specializing in unity through diversity. Inhabited by children of God striving to better know God's will through sincere seeking. I see you bring us another joyful countenance. Good to have you. I guess you know how to distinguish Adam and Eve in a nudist colony - they are the only ones without belly buttons. I'm sure you know what the agnostic dislectic insomniac does at night - lies in bed and wonders if there is a dog. When the pope was in Denver he decided he wanted to drive the limosine that picked him up. The driver reluctantly agreed and got in back. In his exuberance the pope was pulled over for speeding. The state trooper walked up to the limo, looked in, gasped and quickly retreated to his squad car. He called the main station and asked if there was some major personality in town and when the dispatcher asked why the trooper said, "Well, it must be someone important - the pope is driving him around." Sorry, guys, I couldn't resist a little merriment. By the way, Dan M. - I thought that "Machiventa is back and he is pissed" was a good one too. It is just those types of conceptions that lead me to believe that a good cross section of the teachings is necessary so that rumor and innuendo don't dominate the discussion. Of course, if you aren't interested in these you can always delete - that's why I label my postings - sort of truth in spiritual advertising. Maybe a better analogy would be like the Tipper Gore album warnings. Anyway, here we go again.


 

19 Aug 1993   Byron Belitsos      Mill grist

Subject: Mill grist


 Regarding "Ham on Space":


 Thank you very much Dan and Phil for your comments on the accuracy of Ham's statement about space. I found Phil's comments most useful. I will study these further as a way of measuring the degree of factual error that occurs in live teaching situations. BTW, I have a proposal. I am opening a T/R school. Next time I see one of you guys, I am going to pepper you with questions at random on scientific, historical, social, moral, religious, philosophical, and spiritual topics, to see if you quality. You'll have about five seconds to formulate each answer. You can't reply as in normal oral communications, with non-sequiters, sloppy syntax, etc., and must be unerringly charming and often humorous. All of the answers have to be highly enlightening to the average UBer. Also, you must inspire them to transform their lives (in the ways referred to in Jess' most recent posting). If you pass, you will be permitted to graduate to transmitter status. At this level of attainment, you must be able to hold the attention for 2-3 hours a week of a dozen or so well-educated truth seekers over a two-year period. You'll have to be motivated enough to deal with skeptics and drive-by shooters week in and week out. Now, to make it fair to the other applicants, and to level the playing field, it would be better if you were a 30 yr old owner of a dry cleaning operation (Ham's T/R, Rebecca), or say, in the case of our transmitter here, a single mother of two children under six years who works construction jobs.




19 Aug 1993   Philip Calabrese      Re: Mill grist

Subject: Re: Mill grist In-Reply-To: Your message of Wed Aug 18 22:40:38 1993


 ------- Dear Logondonters,


 Well Byron, you specifically asked for my evaluation of Ham's presentation of the "space" concept as compared to that of the UB. Did I seem too eager to point out the significant differences between the account in the UB and that of Rebecca (Ham) - one of those who is `keeping intelligent people inspired by her channeling sessions'?


 It was not my intention to express an overall opinion about Ham's (Rebecca's) TM statements, just that on this pet topic of mine, the TM message was significantly at variance with the UB.


 Nevertheless, to take up your challenge, let me say that I am not much impressed by the ability of the channelers to keep intelligent people engaged even for years with their inspiring speech. Many standard Christian preachers can hold forth extemporaneously quite well. I also know too many very intelligent people whose intelligence just allows them to continue to believe their own delusions, whose gifts of intellect are used to defend their self-deluded thinking, whereas someone of lessor intelligence would tend to have to accommodate himself to more conventional thinking, not being able to fend off the critical questions of others. Beware if you have a supple mind that can twist whichever way it wants!


 But I still think that the best policy in all these disputes of interpretation of events is to let those who believe believe and let those who disbelieve disbelieve, and yet let us all express mutual respect and spiritual solidarity by coming together in worship of the same God and by being together with Jesus in the Remembrance event which he instituted. When we thus come together as one spiritual family, we can leave behind our intellectual battles, we can put down our mental weapons and seek the attitude of spiritual affection as the Father of spirit would have us feel towards each other.




19 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM - Daniel

Subject: TM - Daniel


 Philip C. : I couldn't agree with you more. Let those who believe, believe. Let those who don't believe, disbelieve. It doesn't really matter to me. I like to post excerpts. Some people like to read them. Some don't. Some people like to criticize them. Some people like to tell jokes. It is all okay with me. I take no offense either way. I don't like intolerance. Byron, who I count as a friend, has a tendency IMHO to get ticked off and be intolerant at times, witness his most recent posting. Chill out Byron. You asked for a comparison and you got several. Why be upset about it or critical? As I've said, this TM isn't designed to restate the UB, but to encourage each person to live its teachings in their own lives. The loftier concepts, like space, etc. are of interest but hardly contribute to the personal living faith being promoted. That's why I don't post those types of excerpts. They are more of a distraction to the central theme than an important piece of information. So let's be a little more thick skinned, all of us. Unity through diversity. We are all on a path to the Father and to Paradise Isle. No need to get pissy about the diversity. 'Nuff said. I received a letter yesterday, the contents of which I would like to share. The letter came from Antofagasta, Chile from a 20 year old university student named Erwin. As some of you may know, all of the Will transcripts are available on computer disk and I have sent them to many people in this country. Erwin somehow got one, had it translated and says this, "For what, only God knows (nothing is casual) [by this I think he means that there are no coincidences], I happened to receive a diskette with information that has astonished me...From the moment I translated the introduction from the study group, I decided to study the transcripts. I am very grateful to Will, you, your group and all those who made it possible for this information to enter my heart. I feel I love Will. It is incredible that this is happening to me...I belong to the "I AM" group from the Saint Germain Foundation... Will says, 'The love of God surrounds us, the love of God enfolds us, the power of God supports us all, wherever we gather, He is.' Our beloved ascended master Saint Germain says, 'In the fullness of the Presence is the love that you require, In the fullness of the Presence are the things that you desire.'" Wow. I had goosebumps for ten minutes after I read this letter. This mission is truly spreading out and many are interested. Many are seeking truth. It is our job and joy to plant the seeds for the Father to water.




20 Aug 1993   Matthew Rapaport              Another week gone by already?

Subject: Another week gone by already?


 There does seem to be some question as to the impact of the TM on the UM as a whole at this point. I think Fred mentioned that the largest gathering of TM folk at IC93 was 60 people. Assuming there were a few more, and that the general attendence was in the 600-800 range (perhaps someone could come up with a real figure), we can deduce that TM adherents comprise somewhere between 10% to 15% of the UM at this point. A significant number, but hardly a majority. The next question would be what percentage of these folks have read the *whole* UB even *once*? The matter has some significance only because the TM claims the UB as its foundation.


 

23 Aug 1993   fx618@AOL.COM         THE BENEFITS OF STiLLNESS PRAC

Subject: THE BENEFITS OF STiLLNESS PRACTICE


 In response to Fred's posting on stillness. The practice of stillness seems (in my experience) to be the single most important stimulant to spiritual growth. Stillness seems to generate the following wonderful and desirable benefits:


 1. It is a declaration by actions that you are WILLing to share for however long the inner life with the Eternal Father; it is a worshipful declaration by action only (no words or thoughts) of Faith Sonship or Daughtership.


 2. It helps to stabilize neural energies, thereby enhancing receptivity of Thought-adjuster communication.


 3. It is a daily practice of mindal discipline, it is a withholding of mental, thought activity in favor of pure spirit activity .


 4. It increases spirit capacity, which thereby increases the boundaries and fullness of divine presence: it increase the dimension of the spiritual vessel (so to speak) adding to its light holding capacity


 5. It leads to the enhance bearing of spiritual fruits...


 6. It seems to lead to the enhanced cooperation, increased perception ability and contact with the ministry of the Divine spirit, Third source and center activiites.


 7. It seems to lead to the emergant desire for greater expression on a spiritual level outside of the symbol-concepts familiar on the mindal/intellectual level.


 

23 Aug 1993   David Kantor      responses to the week past

Subject: responses to the week past


 I'm not really trying to support a particular interpretation of the book itself, just asking for some basic philosophic integrity in whatever interpretation people wish to apply.


 I have stated a number of times during the course of these exchanges that I am not so concerned about our *factual* understanding of the book, but the integrity and honesty with which we go about constructing our interpretations. Directly linked with this is the manner in which we go about evaluating our personal religious experiences -- the methods used in one directly influence the other. Neither am I willing to accept a radical relativist position. To me, the UB is so complex that none of us could really claim much more than a speculative opinion on the factual content, but we *can* bring some principles to bear on our quest for understanding, insight and wisdom, both in our reading of the book and in our evaluation of our personal spiritual experiences. Not that I've achieved much here, but it *is* a goal. I would also add that these limitations do not preclude someone from having a good sense of what constitutes a distortion of the text.


 Thea, your last clarifications about the Spirit of Truth seemed pretty clear to me, but I still feel that I failed to adequately communicate my meaning to you. I suppose that part of the dynamic here is that I rush to judgement a little too quickly because of my prejudices towards anyone who takes the precepts of the TM seriously. I assume that if someone buys into the tm, that it is not a context specific choice but rather relates to the way that person processes information and experience in general and therefore I'm going to be skeptical of *any* conclusions they reach. Tolerating a different viewpoint does not mean that I have to be willing to accept it as valid; rather do I see tolerance as giving the other person the space to hold their view regardless of how I view it. However, if someone is going to publically propagate a view in an evangelical manner, which tm adherents have certainly done hereon, that's the point at which I think it becomes fair game for a more critical assessment.


 Cub Reporter from Los Osos; welcome aboard. I spent a couple of years in San Luis Obispo and greatly enjoyed that stretch of the coast.


 Re: the fruits of the spirit defense for the TM: It seems to me that the teachings of Jesus when applied to our lives, are going to yield the "fruits of the spirit." It doesn't matter whether they came from the Bible, The Urantia Book, or restated by the mind of a person claiming to be a TR. They remain the teachings of Jesus and as such retain their power when applied to our lives. The fruits which are borne out of this application validate the teachings themselves and *do not* validate the claims to special authority made on the part of the person who delivered the teachings.


 To say that the fruits of applying Jesus' teachings (as rehashed by TRs) validates the TM is like writing out the teachings of Jesus, wrapping them in a plastic cover for distribution, and then claiming that any good which came from them was due to the wrapper and validated its superiority as a packaging material. (note that the wrapper had to be discarded before the contents could be used).


 I also have a hard time appreciating individuals who invite me to get to know them so that I can see the fruits of the spirit in their lives -- this seems a little odd to me. My understanding of the fruits of the spirit is that they emerge in the lives of believers and in their communities *unconsciously*. I would be far more receptive to an essay someone like Fred Harris' wife might write about how the TM has improved their family life than the self-agrandizing claims of a TR trying to get me to accept his/her prophetic role as an agent of the fifth epochal revelation.


 John and all, please note that the "spiritual libido" reference was metaphoric only and not a proposal for a theoretical model. I still hold to it and re Thea's response would say that I am separating the socialization of the religious impulse from the impulse itself. I think that Thea's right about our underutilization of our spiritual resources, but this is on a level where we make the application. The level of the libidinous problem is the impulse itself, the impulse to worship God and find some union with Deity. This is the impulse which I think can dominate and lead to fanaticism. It is only philosophy and morality which can provide management tools for this impluse imo, each of which must be dominated by a quest for truth as well as love.


 I keep coming back to the idea of worship as the common ground in all this, the single element from which we can derive a sense of community. Is this correct? Doesn't worship exist as a practical personal and social expression of Jesus' gospel of spiritual friendship with God and each other? In this context I am curious to know what the relationship is between the practice of the "silence" and the quest to hear "teachers" in which I assume "teaching mission" adherents engage, and the ongoing practice of prayer and worship. Do tm adherents still practice prayer and worship on a regular basis which is separate from their tm practices, or have these two practices which are so highly valued in the UB been replaced? In other words, do tm adherents engage in regular prayer and worship which is independent of their attempts to be involved with "teachers" or the "teaching mission" as a movement; do they engage in personal prayer which is not conditioned by tm beliefs, or has "entering into the silence" become the sole religious practice? If this is too personal an area into which to venture I can certainly understand. These things can be quite private and personally sacred and perhaps are not matters for critical scrutiny.


 John, I have attempted to be as open as possible hereon which includes sharing my personal life as well as my views, for better or for worse. As I have stated previously, I no longer have any copies or notes related to "channeled" messages in which I participated. As for opinions regarding the underlying factors relating to "channeling" phenomenon, I would not offer such views if I did not think there was evidence to support at least a reasonable probability that they might be right. It's curious to me that when I put forth such ideas, I end up getting the attack personally -- no one addresses the merits or errors of the ideas themselves (with the sometimes exception of Thea who appears to be the only tm supporter who is unafraid to grapple with actual issues raised, often with helpful and clarifying results).


 If it were just a matter of entering into community with brothers and sisters and sharing life experiences, I might be willing to be a little more accommodating. However, I am just as concerned about my brothers and sisters who will be studying the UB five or ten generations from now. I know enough about the history and development of religious movements to be painfully aware of the significance of beginnings, the way in which these things can be so easily distorted at the outset, and the degree of confusion and disorientation they end up causing honest seekers in the future. I think we should be far more critical and careful in our formulations of positions. I certainly don't have a clear idea of how to go about this in a way which combines ethical considerations in the present with moral responsibility for the future, but one has to start somewhere. Hopefully we'll all learn how to do this well as we continue on our journey.


 I do have a sense of the incredible chaos within communities attempting to assimilate the fourth epochal revelation for the first 300 years of its history. The attempt to deal with this chaos led to the fossilization of the precepts of that revelation, much to the impoverishment of the planet. We have yet to even begin to cultivate an awareness of these issues within the readership, let alone chart a course which will yield better results. One has only to read about the second century exploits of Montanus, who claimed to be delivering messages from the Holy Spirit which were a direct extension of Jesus' bestowal and the negative impact which he had on communitites of believers for generations afterword, in order to get a sense of the issues. The Urantia Book itself deplores the distortions and illusions which these well-meaning early God-lovers bequeathed to subsequent generations.


 I do appreciate your comments and participation hereon and would like to hear any views you might have on the above. Be aware that I am neither flailing in the dark nor venting emotions accumulated from past experience; I have some serious concerns about what is happening here amongst the readership and am struggling to understand how to best relate to it. At the very least, I am unwilling to embrace apathy in the name of tolerance. I would suggest the book "The Closing of the American Mind" by Allan Bloom for anyone who wishes to have a broader perspective on the environment of intellectual education and culture (or lack thereof) in which we are attempting to function. The biggest problem I see is that of finding the wisdom to relate positively to the situation in its entirety rather than only to a segregated portion of it.


 Hit of the week in my snail pile was a set of documents from a group in Europe engaging in a spiritualistic practice which they call Instrumental Transcommunication (ITC). These folks use scanners, answering machines, tape recorders and video monitors for communicating with "celestials." Their literature contains instructions for using a tape recorder on which you record your questions and then remain in silence while the "celestials" answer. When you play the tape back, you turn up the volume and listen closely for the answer. They point out that it's not like a human voice, somewhat like a windy sound and a high pitch hiss, but they claim you can hear the words if you listen closely enough.


 They also use video monitors tuned to a blank channel and see actual images of the "celestials." They are quick to point out that these "celestials" are extremely considerate of each individual and do not impose themselves on anyone; they appear only to those who truly believe in them.


 As with all this mediumship, the actual messages seem to correspond content-wise to the general thoughts and ideas which exist in the community of mediums. These folks even arrange to have appearances of dead people for the surviving families. The only requirement is that you whole-heartedly believe that your loved one will appear to you in the dot pattern on the monitor in order for you to actually see them. The phenomenon is fully validated by the personal experience of all who have done it. The "celestials" have also faxed images of the heavenly worlds to believers (which look remarkably like villages in the European Alps). There is also apparently a very warm and loving community developing of individuals who have been so blessed which these folks claim is a validation of the power of the "celestials." Contact Cercle D'Etudes Sur La Transcommunication, Residence Marie Curie, Avenue Louis Pasteur 13-17, L-2311, Luxembourg, BP2 if you think I'm jivin'.




23 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM Stillness

Subject: TM Stillness


 David Kantor, I enjoyed your post and would like to comment on it. (I hate for Thea to be the only one who responds adequately). First let me say that personally I pray and worship daily. I do it mainly on a bridge near my house while my dog, Muttley, cavorts in the water. I got the idea from two stories in the UB. The first is the bridge at Siddon where Jesus told his apostles not to build a house on a bridge and reminded them that this life was a bridge. I liked that. Secondly, I got great inspiration from Rodan when he commented that he liked the fact that Jesus would daily go out by himself and talk to God. So I went out to our local bridge and talked to God. Still do. I talk about all the things of spiritual import that happened to me during the day. I thank Him for all the blessings I have received and I ask to better know His will in my life. I used to ask Him how I could better assist in the sharing of the UB because I was so singularly unsuccessful in interesting others in it. That's how I ran into the TM. Be careful what you pray for you might get it. But that's another story. So, yes, even though I am on a "cult-de-sac", as you jokingly put it, prayer and worship are still central to my daily routine. But after I complete my prayer and worship, I try to find the stillness. Not to "hear" a teacher, but to listen for God. God does not verbalize for me, but I know He is there and I feel better for the time I spend listening. It gives me peace and I can often feel His love. It is great for me. Many people meditate and have expressed to me their similar feelings. You probably have done the same. If you haven't, try it, you will like the fruits. And speaking of fruits, I am not aware that the TM said that the only way to realize the fruits of Jesus' teachings are through the TM. In fact, the lessons are constantly stating that truth can be found in many different sources. (There are as many paths to the Father as there are souls to walk them.) The teachers are not reinventing the wheel. They freely admit that they are in the service of Michael and are basically trying to motivate the couch potatoes into action to further their path. Fruits should be recognized from whatever tree they come from. The TM is not the only path. I think your statement about measuring the fruits was a valid one. My wife is a good example. She thinks I'm nuts. First of all she doesn't like or read the UB. She has always resisted it for some reason and I have not tried to push it on her. You can imagine her horror when I told her about the Teaching Mission. She figured I would be in saffron robes selling incense at the airport, but it hasn't happened that way. Actually, the other day she asked me what happened to my "evil twin". She has commented that it has made me a more loving husband and attentive father. She is still worried that it will lead me off into something wacko (like talking to hundreds of people from around the world via the computer?) but it has been two years and I haven't wacked out yet (you may disagree with that assessment). I have also had people at my office ask me what is going on in my life. I now get great pleasure in providing service to others. Has it transformed me? I think so. Did the UB transform me? No doubt about it. Adversities are more easily handled. I have a different perspective on things. Don't get me wrong, my application for sainthood is still pending at the Vatican and there are still a lot of blemishes to be worked out. But I am excited about the path I am on and I like to share some of the teachings from time to time for others to consider. Look to the substance of the messages. Assume that I made them all up. Ignore the teacher designations. But try to live the lessons in the UB. That's the message I am trying to convey. Don't get hung up on the source. The same message I used to tell people when I was trying to get them to read the UB. It is interesting that it is so hard for UB readers to take that to heart. Anyway, maybe I will get my wife on here to tell it from her perspective. And its time I got off my soapbox. I sense that you, David, are living the lessons of Jesus already. Your posting regarding having the old guy over for dinner was the best service story I've heard in awhile. You are living it, pass it on.



24 Aug 1993   Leland Foster       A FAX from God.

Subject: A FAX from God.


 David,


 The news about the group receiving fax's from celestial beings reminded me about the time the Pacaya volcano erupted in Guatemala a few years ago. Everyone was saying that there was an apparition of the Virgin Mary in the lava that was shot up into the air. One non-believer said "that it looked as much like Karl Marx as it did the Virgin Mary." People can see and hear what they want to, see C.S. Lewis' book "The Magicians Nephew" of the Narnia Chronicals for another example of this.



26 Aug 1993   Thea Hardy       Re: Opera news + Phil

Subject: Re: Opera news + Phil In-Reply-To: [9308270603.AA09886@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Byron,


 I was absolutely delighted with the quotes from The Magic Flute... I have heard parts of it and adore Mozart anyway, finding much of his music to embody in sound what those lyrics describe. Now I, too, must go out and find a good copy! Thank you for sharing!


 T/R Motivation is an interesting topic, too. Naturally if we look from a realistic standpoint, we will find no single motivation, though certain ones may tend to dominate. I, too, would grant that representatives of all viewpoints expressed hereon exist amongst the lists of those who take on this task. I think other motivations that we have not yet discussed in depth may also be included, and may even turn out to be more typical.


 My conscious motivation, which cannot of course be my unconscious motivation by definition, is to serve to the best of my ability the will of the Father. I find it interesting because I still do not relish the experience, except for feeling the tremendous love that the teachers and others have for us here. That in itself has been a lesson as I simply do not have that much love yet for my fellows. It is fascinating to hear a troublesome question asked, feel a personal sense of annoyance, and yet experience this tremendous love and patience and understanding as the question is answered. If in fact this is in me, I am doing vastly, vastly better than I can imagine. And I do not tend to underestimate myself to the degree that I once did.


 Unconscious motivation, of course, is not as easy to come at, either externally, or of course internally. I have had plenty of experience in assessing others' unconscious motivations with less than fairness and love. How, in fact, do we find a way to reliably assess this aspect? What criteria can we use? How can we design such assessments? Is it materially different than the way we might assess our brothers' and sisters' motivations for other reasons? What works in those cases? I am not convinced in any way that the scientific method can get to the bottom of this, but I am always interested in what data the scientific method can obtain, if for no other reason than ones ability to then extrapolate.


 Some of the possibilities are:


 1. Sincere motivations, adjuster-guided, celestial-aided. 2. Sincere motivations, misguided judgment. (Same as 3-6 ?) 3. Sincere motivations consciously, ego-boost motivations unconsciously. 4. Sincere motivations consciously, fractured personality expression unconsciously, with varied motivation on that level. 5. Sincere motivations consciously, attempt to get love and attention uncons. 6. Sincere motivations consciously, attempts to control and dominate unconsc. etc 7. Insincere motivations, with varied mixed motivations conscious and unconsc. 8. Insincere motivations, fully conscious.


 These are not clearcut catagories, as you can see, including sketchy definitions and much overlap, but it does come to mind that the situation whereby we judge any such behaviors is the result of complex, multiple and interrelated causes. The variables in this are enough to send anyone trying to do it justice to the funny zoo in short order.


 In the end, I do not know what else to do but follow Dennis's comment of time being the test, and the fruits of the spirit that result in that time. Or not. But I am interested in attempts to look at the above anyway because I am a sucker for information and anything that provokes thinking. (However uncomfortable it may make me initially.)


 Can I blame this on you, Byron?!


 


 

27 Aug 1993   Byron Belitsos      Opera news + Phil

Subject: Opera news + Phil


 Phil, thanks for calling me on my reaction to your analysis of "Ham on Space." For anyone following this, I posted an answer by Ham to a question posed by a physicist in the Woods Cross group. The physicist asked about the nature or definition of "space". Since I am not well-versed on what the UB says on time/space, I asked for comments, and Dan and Phil stepped in to list the many points in which the answer strayed from the UB.


 At the literal level, (and if one leaves out any reference to context or setting), Phil and Dan were in the main correct in pointing out these errors. I replied, not by acknowledging this to be so, but with a repartee designed to change the subject.


 I challenged them at a different level of interpretation: the issue of what could motivate dozens of people to be T/Rs and to submit to questions out of the range of their knowledge. Only Bob Blackstock has been courageous enough to address the issue of T/R motivation philosophically, in his sketch of a Jungian theory (that has not yet been tested against the demographic and textual data), and by David K. in uncoordinated fragments. We should not leave out E. Moyers extended analysis attempting to show the diabolical implications of the TM. Now I believe that there are seeds of truth in each of these interpretations -- even though I believe in the overall veracity of the claims of the TM.


 None of these theories, I might add, have scholarly rigor, IMHO, or are based on comprehensive research in the field -- although it appears that David K has attempted some of this with his "abused child T/R" theory based on field research (which has some empirical basis, I might add). Nor do these writers pointedly isolate and deal with the issue of T/R motivation as such.


 But they are very valuable. I should say, in asking for such rigorous analysis, that I have an intention to use such analytical work, even of my esteemed "opponents", to build up my own "dialectical" (Hegelian) understanding about what is going on here. When in a controvery, I have always found that a large portion of the truth has migrated over to the other side of the aisle from the one that I am on. Sometimes a key portion of it. Sometimes all of it. This seems to be a law of disputation and dialectics. The truth is found in the higher synthesis. No one position can ever contain all of it.


 (I say all this while recognizing that theory is always secondary to experience, or a hand-maiden to it.)


 In any case, I may have come across as defensive with Phil and others. I certainly didn't want to irritate you Phil, since I esteem your online friendship and tolerance. I did definitely want to "push the envelope", however, especially for those who appear to ignore obvious issues of context.


 As it was, no one's position changed on anything, as usual, and Fred came out sounding like the Wise Man from Tallahassee. Ma be it is time for me to work on an opera libretto, since there is probably no way to share my absolute delight in the experience of working with the celestials, at least in ways that can be comprehensible to intellectual logic, without poetry and song. I do continue to work slowly on my "white paper" on the TM, and have learned from this episode about new directions to take in this enjoyable work.



27 Aug 1993   Byron Belitsos      Fellowship politics

Subject: Fellowship politics


 I hope this posting addresses some comments from others, notably David K, in the form of a direct reply to Dan....


 Dan you wrote:


 "....It seems to me that Byron wishes the Fellowship exerted less control over its publications*... and more control over its conferences (so that the "Message" would have been presented in a less ambiguous way and he would not have been temporarily misled, along with a number of other attendees, both pro- and anti-TM)..."


 Later you wrote:


 "....you aren't willing to cut the Fellowship any slack when it comes to their measuring up to your standards for an organization. It might be more constructive to disclose your agenda more fully, whatever it is. Personally, I find it exhausting to try to be infallible all the time...."


 I am merely calling for more democracy and accountabilty, Dan, so that we might have some "quality control". The relatively undemocratic structure of the Fellowship, pointed out in detail by Jim McNelly and many others, is dangerous and unhealthy -- certainly not worthy IMO of an epochal revelation. A constitutional reform movement is underway, but is frustrated in part by the rules in the outdated constition that make it cumbersome and time-consuming to amend.


 To be blunt about it, the time may be approaching for a "constitutional convention" to create a new constitution for the Fellowship, or at least for concerted action at constitutional reform. Certainly the clause referring to "fostering a religion" must, IMHO, be excised. This is very unsatisfactory indeed. If the Fellowship is to be a religion, then it should, for example, have a grievance procedure like that recommended by Jesus on pp 1762-3, rather than a "gossip procedure". It should also carry out the other functions of a religious organization as outlined in the paper on "Social Problems of Religion". Also, as a religious group, it should be "separate from all other groups," (p. 1089). But it does or is few of these things. Meanwhile, it occupies the ground that should be taken up by genuine religious groups such as are evolving now.


 I well remember the time in 1983 when I was assigned by Troy Bishop to write a story on FOG's move to its Clayton headquarters where the fiasco well-documented here by David K was to be played out. This news story was to be published in Troy's then excellent newsletter (the name of which I have forgotten). Vern declined. His response showed me that he did NOT want any independent reporting on FOG's activities, even a news story about his move to Clayton.


 I am not saying that the Fellowship is dangerously isolated as FOG was, but one must always remember that its confused constitution was established in an earlier, inexperienced, and quite secretive, era. For example, observers were not even permitted in GC meetings until a few years ago. Members of the General Council are not answerable to their societies because they are not even elected by them. And the constitution does not yet have the seperation of powers that is recommended in the UB on p. 806.


 The best time for creating a new constitution was probably at the moment of the break from the Foundation in 1989. But it's not too late to start, friends! Maybe a new and streamlined organization could be created by the year 2000, one around which many independent cults and religious movements could thrive without obstruction from any official organization with a pseudo-religious aura and a religious agenda of its own. Unfortunately, many of the activities staged in Montreal and sponsored by the Fellowship were overtly religious (though well-executed), culminating in the "Michael Message" faux pas. This is a trend that concerns many, especially those in "out-groups" like the TM. It is crucial that the rights of such groups be respected and upheld in all cases.


 Further, there is precious little independent journalistic scrutiny of the Fellowship today, with perhaps the sole exception of Steve Finlan's "Two Cents" newsletter. In addition, there is almost no journalistic reporting by the Fellowship of controversies besetting the Fellowship or the Foundation in the official publications....


 You also wrote [and this is excerpted from your statement above]:


 "...[your] article on the Maaherra case, involv[ed] issues which could potentially draw the Fellowship into litigation with the Foundation, could be printed in the Bulletin and sent to thousands of readers who would not know what [your were] writing about...."


 First, I should point out for the record that this story was co-authored with one of the ATTORNEYS that advises the Fellowship on legal matters, Steve MacIntosh. Steve assured all of us that there were no grounds for litigation by the UF if a news story was reported on the case. The piece was as balanced and factual as possible and followed conventional journalistic standards. Further, the reason for broadcasting the story to 1000's of readers who "would't know what was being talked about" is to provide a service so that they WOULD KNOW what is being talked about among the "insiders". Not allowing this piece to get out in the official organ of the Fellowship is yet another evidence of the elitism and paternalism of the organization, (for all its many good qualities). Even the Foundation's newsletter had a story on the Maahera case, for goodness sake! These are the kind of issues for which a reformed Fellowship would be accountable to its members.


 

27 Aug 1993   Thea Hardy       Response to Hal

Subject: Response to Hal In-Reply-To: [9308271654.AA16441@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Hal, I greatly appreciate your words about the TM process. Despite my frustrations with what you have mentioned, I have come to a point of great respect for the way things work. LinEL has said that they will use our concepts/ thoughts/ vocabularies even when they are not perfect expressions, rather than abrogate our freewill choice. I became very appreciative of this approach in the UB, although I have seen more than one heated discussion about the book that may well be a result of this policy. The respect for our free will choice, for the necessity for us to gain our own understandings in our own terms is one reason I came to so trust the book. If it had not been the case in the TM, I would have rejected it. Nothing could have offended me more than a presentation by apparently identical beings with no obvious personality differences and thus no difference in POV. Imagine the teachers all identical in word and attitude and approach and thrusting ready-made concepts into our heads and through our voices. That would have rung alarm bells as big as all get out. I will take the difficulties of the less than perfect situation - and it does pose difficulties - along with the faith leaps that it requires. I believe that I am being asked to allow truth into my heart from whatever source, and to use the faith that I have for discernment and action in line with the Father's will. To me, that the UB should develop a mystical branch (though I really do not perceive it as such from the inside; it is too active in the world to represent such to me) seems unsurprising. I hope that we, the UM, will develop many branches that allow expression and communion for the many diverse approaches to the UB. The book itself does not discourage this at all, to my mind. Our unity lies in our common belief in Michael's commandments to love the Father and each other. With that, we can come together whatever our diversities. I am still minded of his way with the apostles of letting each teach according to his own light and not interfering with it. We are, after all, not outside the pale, but attempting to be apostles to the extent that we wish to spread the teachings of Jesus, news of the living of the religion of Jesus. I see most of us in the UM as being such, and therefore, though we will differ in our approach as did the apostles themselves (and they were pretty much all wrong, one way or another, because of their human limitations!) we can have unity.


 I truly appreciate Urantial as a place where this unity takes place. Our little squabbles are not important. All brothers and sisters do this, and the apostles did, too. Those minor things cannot take away from the sense of love and community that we are building here, where we come with diversity and enlarge our own understandings through letting our individual approaches react to, interact with, and weave together with, others. Thank you, every one of you, for this opportunity.


 

27 Aug 1993   Hal Nicholas       Re: Copy of: Can any good thin

Subject: Re: Copy of: Can any good thing come from channeling from Sonny In-Reply-To: [199308180758.AA07870@freenet.scri.fsu.edu]; from "Dennis Shields" at Aug 18, 93 3:56 am


 Dear Sonny:


 This reply is late due to vacation. Thanks for your reply to my query about the GC attitude to the TM. I'm glad that they have chosen the creative option. I also enjoyed your interpretation of the transmission process. Among other things, it indicates how delicate it is. It sometimes creates frustrating situations, but when our group 'complained' to our teacher Will, she basically replied that they also did not always find this method of communication wholly satisfactory, but that so far no other had been authorized. It is perhaps related to the UB revelators' mandate to use pure revelation only as a last resort. In the last analysis, I think it expresses a love for human personality and respect for free will, a sort of divine compromise. In the long run it may be that this method, despite its inherent possibilities for distortion and error, will be more productive of good than would a more direct (and autocratic) technique (it is also the way of our Lord Michael, for whom the teachers are laboring). I think of the TM transcripts more as the tracings of a developing *relationship* rather than as 'text.' The UB is the text: What is going on in the TM I see as more of a 'down in the trenches' ministry of love and encouragement, and early gropings toward more real and vivid relationships with our celestial brothers and sisters, with all the ups and downs and risks that such an attempt implies.



28 Aug 1993   Leland Foster       messages from god

Subject: messages from god


 The following is something that I found on the newsgroup talk.religion.misc I am including only a sample, anyone who wants the whole post can email me privately.


 *****Quoted text starts*****


 Path: cruzio!netcomsv!decwrl!uunet!wyvern!kkahn From: kkahn@wyvern.wyvern.com (Kenneth Kahn) Newsgroups: talk.religion.misc Subject: Conversations With God July 1993 Message-ID: [CCGxpE.E5z@wyvern.wyvern.com]



28 Aug 1993   Thea Hardy       Re: messages from god

Subject: Re: messages from god In-Reply-To: [9308290309.AA19986@CSOS.ORST.EDU]


 Wow! If I got messages from god, and they sounded like that, I would sign off. I am afraid my allergies to the religion of my youth were mightily stirred up by that. If the TM had been like that, you would not have seen me anywhere in the vicinity. If it becomes like that, I will flee. When I hear anything that smacks of that particular tone, I immediately think "Hmmm... human stuff!" Maybe the stuff that comes from me is human stuff, too. If so, I will take my own brand, and that of some of my fellows, thanks.


 Sorry to be so negative about the negativity in that.


 I am not sure, though, that happy and unhappy would characterize it so much as ... hmmm, well... maybe love-oriented versus fear-oriented? I dunno. Not sure.


 I, for one, would prefer not to see the rest!! ;)


 Thea



30 Aug 1993   Fred Harris         TM teaching areas

Subject: TM teaching areas


 


 Now for a short excerpt on the two major areas of the Teaching Mission at this time.


 "This stage of instruction involves two major areas. The first area is: God is active within every person, therefore there is no reason to fear your brothers and sisters that you encounter in life. We have asked you before to take risks, to bare your chest. It is not so bad when you think about God being on the other side. He has bracketed the field. You have no more to fear from your neighbors than they have to fear from you. What we are really asking is for you to take the first step..."


 "The second major aspect of our teaching at this point is the importance of the Father's ministry through the Adjuster and the fact that we (the celestial teachers -ed) perform only some expeditious services on the periphery of that ministry. The Father's personal ministry is the fundamental program for all the universes. After all, He has set all this in motion. Everything that exists reflects His hand at work. The scope of Creation is so vast that no mind but His can seriously entertain what His purpose is. We see but a glimmer of it and consider ourselves enlightened and lucky. We say to one another, "We have been allowed a glimpse of the divine plan," and we glow in gratitude, yet it is but a grain of sand compared to the whole of His vast creation. By the time we all make it to Paradise, we will know something. Therefore I encourage you, commune with the Father daily. No one is doing anything more important than that. Set aside the time. Your lives are far too busy. You should begin resisting all this wasteful activity, even if only for itself. But better than taking a rebellious attitude, use the time profitability. There is no life wasted in contemplation of the Father."


 "If you do not listen, how will you ever hear His voice? So as you go through your daily duties, look upon your brothers and sisters. Try to discern the God-fragment in them. You can get close to that. Have no fear of crowding them in that regard...Now think about your brothers and sisters. They are now where you were then. They are all wondering, "When is life going to begin for me?" Well, here is the answer: when you open up to that person and speak to him as if Jesus of Nazareth is standing next to you and, by your words and thoughts and every move, you are demonstrating to him that you perfectly understand his teachings, then you will have introduced that person to the Father's banquet hall where the table is always set with delicacies that we do not even recognize. And the best part is, all your friends will be there to enjoy it with us. It is not a lonely experience."


 "Carry the good news of the kingdom to those whose lives are empty and full of hunger. As they gain perspective, the light begins to grow. The flame cannot be extinguished. Take a chance. They will get in line on the sidewalk. They are all hungry for the good news. Give away all that you have daily; whenever you look for more, it will be there. Don't be afraid to tell the people. The message is not beyond their comprehension. With a little practice you will know who the seekers are at a glance. You already know many of them personally. So open conversation with them and share your understanding with them. The Father is at work all over the world. Suddenly the fruits of His labor are about to be known. We are on the brink of the most positive decision making opportunity ever presented to humans. With a minor change in perspective, your country could live in a virtual paradise."


 "The Father has stirred Himself. Sweeping changes are imminent. You are on the crest of a wave. Ride it all the way around the world to Paradise."


 -Will, 1/12/92, Tallahassee, Florida

Sep 1993




1 Sep 1993     David Kantor      Kids and God

Subject: Kids and God


 Hello, Friends...


 Some quick comments on kids and religion -- nice to see this thread and to appreciate the concern that we as parents have for our children in this rather wild world.


 Consider:


 Page-1094 "Give every developing child a chance to grow his own religious experience; do not force a ready-made adult experience upon him."


 Also:


 Page-1101 "It is experience in and with the human religions that develops the capacity for subsequent reception of increased bestowals of divine wisdom and cosmic insight."


 The above, plus my own experience, would lead me to say that it's important to get kids involved in churches or religious groups which already exist in the community rather than trying to develop their religious lives within the limitations of a set of ideas which bear little relationship to the religious experiences which their peers will encounter in their families.


 As a person who was raised in a religious cult, as well as who attempted to raise a child in one for 10 years, I think this is crucial. While the kids are 5, 6, and 7 they will be wide-eyed and enthusiastic about angels, melchizedeks, and whatever you're telling them. But by the time they get to be 14, 15 and 16 and are busy critically deconstructing your life on an hourly basis, they will throw it back in your face and they will have no moorings in a turbulent adolescence.


 If, when they're young and gullible, you lead them to believe in something as fringe as the TM, when they reach adolescence they will quickly see your beliefs as illusions when they discover that most people in the world see such things as pathological at best. They will subsequently be more than likely to ignore *everything* you tell them. They simply won't trust your ability to evaluate experience. When they realize that the "teachers" exist only in mom or dad's head and in the heads of a few of mom and dad's strange friends, they will also think that your warnings about AIDS, drugs, drinking and driving, birth control etc. are just as carefully and critically thought through as your religious ideas. If your kids are approaching the teen years, you definitely have a rendezvous with reality ahead of you, believe me. You can easily destroy your credibility and cut them off from your help at a time of life when they will need it most if you are not wise and careful.


 I think it is essential to give them the tools to synthesize a religious experience from elements readily available in the culture in which they are growing up. If they choose to explore the fringes, they can always do that. But at the very least, I think it is essential to give them a foundation in ideas and beliefs which will also be a part of the experience of their peers.


 Our daughter, Heather, has found a great deal of spiritual sustenance in the Catholic Youth Association at our local parish. This is not because of any deep insight or integrity in their theology, but because it is a hot youth group in her High School; it's where her peers go and it's there where she has found the tools to begin constructing her own religious life. From home, she has simply gotten the understanding that spirituality and the religious life is important. But she's independent enough to insist on putting together the details for herself. But all kids are different!


 Maybe Dick and/or Phil can add something here -- they have both successfully raised children to adulthood. I don't really know Phil's kids, but I do know Dick's girls, and they seem to have a pretty good religious life and a good sense of the UB. Dick and Cheryl have, imo, done an *exceptional* job raising two beautiful daughters.


 Our kids will be adults in a world which we cannot even imagine. I think the best we can do is make sure they are somewhat familiar with the cultural and personal resources from which they can derive information and insight when they need it.


 Remember, it was the kids who weren't afraid to point out that the emperor had no clothes.


 David Kantor

3 Sep 1993     fx618@AOL.COM         Such Dire Predictions!

Subject: Such Dire Predictions!


 David K.-- Amongst the wonderful thread of uplifting and joyous posts on children, you drop this glum and fear-laden warning upon your brothers and sisters involved with the TM: dark days of affliction lie ahead-- for our children will "ignore everything we tell them, won't trust our ability to evaluate experience, a dire rendevous with reality is dead ahead" etc, etc. Hey wait a minute, dude! I thought that was what being a teenager was all about!


 Hmmm! 90% of the teenagers I know who come from families not involved with the UB or the TM) seem to exhibit these traits which allegedly are the predicted fallout of TM Madness and Delusion, therefore I am led to the odd logic that scores of families in my neighborhood have secretly enlisted in the TM and I am the last to know...this thing really is exploding!


 But, seriously, let's assume your joyless predictions all come true, then go one step further and share with us how the Father ultimately works his goodness and mercy through such affliction? In your afflictions are you not blessed?


 Has your 10 year experience with a cult (whose basic theme was FEAR-the destruction of the world by nuclear holocaust), has this not ultimately yielded spiritual growth and fruits of goodness and mercy derived by this traumatic life-experience? Are you not a better son of God? Are you not a better brother to your fellows?



3 Sep 1993     David Kantor      Quick Comments (rated R)

Subject: Quick Comments (rated R)


 Jess...


 You appear to have missed my point that kids can't sustain their religious beliefs into adolescence when they are raised in a system which differs substantially from those experienced by their peers.


 Our experience at FOG was highly idealistic and the values were excellent for the first 13 years. It was only in the last two years that things became more negative. Again, it's not the nature of the beliefs themselves, it's the fact that it differs so significantly from the rest of the culture.


 My primary point was that kids should have at least some experience and religious education relative to the religions active in the culture surrounding them. It sounds as if you are just beginning to experience the nature of this problem.


 You appear, however, to have more than adequate resources with which to deal with it -- good luck!


 

5 Sep 1993     Matthew Rapaport              Contact with spirit and religi

Subject: Contact with spirit and religious U-orgs.


 Ah another week of virtual community building here on urantial.


 Thea... The snapshots of your life, and your general philosophy make your own views of your TR status very interesting. Cheryl (my wife) has, with dead seriousness, described many years of reletively steady contact with an entity she labeled "angel" for lack of anything more concrete at the time. This entity consoled her, and helped her through hard times with much emphasis on helping Cheryl recognize the spiritual dimention in her experiences. Much like you and others have described the process of TR-ing, this was not so much in words as concepts and connections that led to insightes.


 As she got older (into her teens) these contacts diminished in their personal intensity (that is she communicated less and less with what she thought of as a person), but she never ceased to be aware of a presence. I've never doubted her story or the reality of this presence (whether a Seraphim, Cherubim, adjuster-liason with the Spirit of Truth, whatever...) for her, and its spiritual efficacy (like I said she grasped the essential spiritual philosophy of the UB as soon as she was introduced to it).



6 Sep 1993     Fred Harris         TM Children, etc.

Subject: TM Children, etc.


 David K. - This concept of raising the kids so they are more into "mainstream" religion is a reminder of the "bandwagon argument" from Logic 101 (ie it must be true because everyone else is doing it). That philosophy is also probably responsible for Paul blending other religions and beliefs into Jesus' message and getting Christianity where it is today. Actually, the Teaching Mission or any other philosophy or religion will only impact kids through its effect of their parents' lives. Sara makes a good point when she quotes the UB to remind us that loyalty will impress the kids, but I also think that living your beliefs will similarly have the desired results. Of course kids are all on their own paths and, except for the kind of restraints Jim McNelly speaks of, they must be allowed to find God on their own. In my opinion. And what do I know? My kids are only 8 & 10 so I can still be smug about my opinions. By the way, David K., your libido jumps out at the strangest moments. Come back a woman's bicycle seat? Does your wife know you post this type of stuff?


 A short exchange on children may be of interest.


 Question: What can we do to prepare our children to lead a spiritual life?


 Will: Children are such that they will but follow naturally the teachings of their parents. They learn by watching. When you lead a spiritual life, they will bey nature absorb what you do and follow. Be assured that your little ones are already well aware of their place in the scheme of things and they will find the Father for themselves. You will not have to work hard. The work will be natural. Be not anxious.


 -11/3/91, Tallahassee, Fla.

7 Sep 1993     Fred Harris         TM Children's lesson

Subject: TM Children's lesson


 Folks, you are about to witness what will be a truly historic and timesaving event if it works - an upload. I know that many of you take this ability for granted, but here on freenet we have had to be online with our compositions since day one. Or so I thought. Drumroll please as I attempt to upload a lesson for children that we asked Will to give us some time back and which would fit nicely into the children discussion we have been having.


 


 Lesson For Young People


 In the beginning, or maybe even before that, there was always God. He was perfect: smart, wise, fair, kind, and able to see into the future. There was this one thing, though, that He thought would make everything even better -- someone to share with -- so He filled heaven with companions, angels and such. They are pretty much like us, with a beginning, and they live forever. They have jobs, like us, only they do God's work.


 The great gift He made to them and us is free will, the chance to make up our own minds, even if we are mistaken or if we want to do wrong. He trusts us to learn from the bad feeling of our mistakes. Angels make mistakes sometimes. The Lucifer story is the story of a bad mistake.


 But God thought it through so far that He made a creature so different from Him, so almost-opposite, that it is almost an animal. That is us. Of all the smart creatures, spiritual and physical, He gave us a chance to get better and better, never stopping, until we make it to heaven. And He made a special gift to each of us, to make sure that we can make it with or without extra help. He gave us each a little sliver of Himself, to give us a taste of perfect. That's what really makes us different from our animal cousins -- not because we live in houses, they do that; not because we wear clothes, they do that; not because we talk to each other, they kind-of do that; not because we think, they probably do that. What makes us different is that we always know that there is a right thing to do. We can't always see it; sometimes we never find it; sometimes we don't care about it; sometimes we refuse it; but we always know there is a right way. That's why we're not animals any more. It's the Father-fragment, that sliver of God, that makes us know about right.


 Everybody knows about right-and-wrong. Grownups talk about it, tell you what's right, what's wrong. But grownups are wrong sometimes, sometimes they're mostly wrong. And even then each person knows what is right -- no matter what other people say. That's why we are human. That's why God loves us. That's why some people say we are God's children, and He is our Father.


 A good parent lets you do things for yourself. A good parent lets you make your own mistakes, and lets you learn at your own speed. A good parent shows how it's done right, then gets out of the way. A good parent teaches about the important things, and lets the little things take care of themselves.


 God is always busy, but never so busy that He can't listen to us. What He says is hard to understand. Most people think He has never spoken to them. But He helps us from the inside. If we trust ourselves, and work at what is right, everything will work out. We won't need to speak in words. We will be living with God -- always a happy feeling.


 That doesn't mean it will be easy. We are not like Him -- not yet anyway. And He knows it's hard. So He sent His son, so that we would have an example to look to.


 His son was born as an ordinary person. He gave up all his God-powers, and was born into a human family as a little helpless baby. He was called Jesus, just a regular boy in a regular village, with parents and brothers and sisters in a stone house with a dirt floor. He didn't grow up rich or spoiled or fancy. He didn't go to private school, or get special treats because he was smart or handsome. He was just a regular kid, with all the problems of every other kid, and maybe some extra. His mother told him one thing was right, and his father said something different. But he made it through all right, just like everybody else. He had friends that helped him, and bullies that picked on him, and girls who liked him and others who didn't. He never had a lot of money, and he always had a lot of work to do. But he had one thing that he paid special attention to: he felt sure that there was always a right way, and he worked on that, thought about it, talked to teachers and old people about it. And later on, when he was older, after thinking for so long about what was right, he found out who he was. All the things he did, up to that point, are the things we should all do too. That's just ordinary stuff, for every one of us. Jesus proved that any ordinary person could know all about God, just by what was inside.


 And if he could do it, so can each of us. He went back to his place in heaven, and when we feel like we can't take it any more, we can always speak to him. He knows. He understands. That will help us get back on track.


 Well, everybody gets to make up their own mind about these things. You might think this is baloney, or some dumb grownup stuff, but it's not. It's everybody's stuff, and it doesn't matter if you are a kid or a grownup, this stuff never changes -- you just get busier. Pretty soon, you can train yourself never to think about this stuff, but it's always there. It sneaks out, and you find yourself thinking about right again. Can't stop God, you can only look away for a while. Maybe when you find yourself wishing for something right, you'll feel that connection. Know what it is? It's God calling. And if you do right, it can change everything.


 -Will, 10/2/92, Tallahassee, Florida


 This is great! This will save me untold hours and it will save you reading all the typos attendant with online typing. Hope you liked the story. I read it to my kids during the trampolene service I give every Sunday morning. They liked it pretty well. Lately I have been focusing my "sermons" on parables and real life examples of people living the Father's love. My latest example is Reginald Denny, the truck driver who was dragged from his truck and beaten during the LA riots. He has really exhibited some class, don't you think? I also liked the NY Jets linebacker who was crippled by a hit on the field and who walked back on the field last week after showing great faith in God during the process. How about some other examples anyone can think of. Let's describe our favorite examples of living the word.



9 Sep 1993     Joseph Veisz       Urantia, ETEL

Subject: Urantia, ETEL


 >>HEY, Thea, you out there anywhere? I;ve tried to send you and Michele a message five or six times today, and I keep losing it when I try to send it. I've answered your questions so many times today, I feel as if I'm being redundant to the nth degree, but here goes: First off, Joe wants to know whats the scoop on your PINE software? Will it make life any simpler for his newly sprouted computer monster? The reason I want to be a TR is because at the current time we only have one TR, and when she is not present, we of course, cannot talk to Will; more to the point, have her talk to us. So, I really want to do a service to the group ..........however, running a close second, I would love to feel the love you talked about when you bring in Will, et al. I don't know if I have a personal teacher or not. recently, after I've meditated, I've picked up a paper and pencil and written down the things that come to mind. The writings have been sort of lesson-like, however, if one were to compare them to Freds' writings, they would fall much below the quality of his. The other day when my better half and I had a little tiff, I went out of the room and tried to meditate; afterwards, it seemed that the lesson was for ME. So, again, I don't really know. A number of years ago I did some automatic writing and go the name Endeson; when I asked where he came from, I drew a picture of an hourglass, and a star with a long tail........ whatever that means...........Gosh, I hope you get this. I finally called Fred and he may have figured out my problem. Re: Urantia Movement: Here's a very small service (adventure?] On my way to the TM meeting Sunday, I passed a homeless person who was standing on a corner too far away for me to give him anything.... now the person of yesterday would have said, "Oh, well, too bad I can't help him; he's too far away"; but this new person had no such thoughts, she did a u-turn, came back around, caught his attention, and looking him right in the eye, gave him something; [you know this feels too muuch like tooting my own horn, something I'm not very comfortable with, hope it's not being taken that way], well, anyway as I was waiting at the light, I kept looking to see if I could make eye contact again [just in case the Father didn't have enough time the first time around] at that moment, the fellow looked up and gave me one of the most loving smiles I've ever received from a stranger. Really made MY day. Ah, us simple souls are always easy to please; ask Joe, he'll give you a different story. Enough, Enough [Joe has truely created a monster] Any tips you can give RE: how to get a personal teacher, or whatever, will be much appreciated. Love and Big Hugs back to you Thea Michele, Just wanted to let you know you're not alone out there. I just recently retired; had a home daycare for years........the house is sooooooooooo quiet. AND THEN I DISCOVERED THE COMPUTER ....I'll be watching the posts with interest. Love Joyce LOOK OUT, all you Logendonters, this one knows how to type and she likes to talk.........seriously, I've really enjoyed reading all the posts, even the SCIENTIFIC ones, and I DIDN'T take chemistry, wish I did now. But, maybe some of it will sink in so I'll have a little bit of an edge when I get to the Mansion Worlds. Bye for now Joyce



14 Sep 1993    Byron Belitsos      Public TM debate digest....

Subject: Public TM debate digest....


 Dear loggers and fellow lurkers,


 The following is the introduction to the "TM Debate" (digested excerpts from Urantial) that I am about to send to "Urantian Sorjourn", Terry Kruger's satirical magazine. This is a draft. Any comments?? This project certainly touches on our ongoing private/public debate. I have not included the actual text (about 25k), but would be willing to send it to any of you who are quoted. (These include Leo, Michael, Jim, David K, Matthew, and Phil.) Michael (and other folks), would you like to have me include in this article information for how readers of the magazine can get online with us?

 Byron....

 End Part 7