Tuesday, March 16, 2010

#7:  DeFuniak Springs Florida.  The Sunday before last I went to a study group meeting in Madisonville Louisiana. There were five of us and as usual the discussions were interesting. We read paper 34, “The Local Universe Mother Spirit.” It is remarkable that the last three groups have been reading in the same part of the book (Baton Rouge read paper 36 and Fort Walton Beach read paper 38); this is the same general area of the book I am reading on the Kindle. I am reading this version so I can store bookmarks for future reference.

During the meeting Ed mentioned the Null Hypothesis in relation to the Urantia Book which I found interesting since I have previously had similar thoughts. In Statistics, if you want to prove a theorem you state its inverse and determine the probability that the inverse, the Null Hypothesis, is true. (Not that I was ever very proficient in Statistics!) For the Urantia Book the Null Hypothesis would be that it had Earthly authors. Given its total internal consistency, rich complexity and variation in style between papers it is most unlikely that any Earthly authors could have penned it, but if they had put forth all the effort required to compose it then they would have wanted something in return, money or recognition perhaps. In this context, I have read that when William Sadler, Jr. was first told about the Urantia Papers his question was “Who is making money from it?” When he was told “Nobody,” he was interested. (I do not have the page number, but this is in “A History of The Urantia Papers” by Larry Mullins with Dr. Meredith Sprunger.) I believe that the Null Hypothesis is a powerful argument for the authenticity of the Urantia Book.

Last Wednesday I moved back to DeFuniak Springs; the weather report threatened heavy rain and wind but I saw little along the way. That night I saw on the weather report that the rain mostly stayed south of I-10 where I was.

The next day I went into the town and found the springs; there was a small lake which had more water than usual. As I walked around it, more than once I saw the top of a park bench sticking above the water six feet or so out from the shore. The pear trees were in blossom and it was a beautiful day for a walk. The building in the picture is the Chamber of Commerce; next to it is a plaque commemorating the Chautauqua meeting house which had been located there.


                                         A child picks a leaf, stares at it
                                         Hours on end, studying its veins
                                         Its edges, the pattern on the back,
                                         Studies and studies, then throws it away.

                                         A child studying a leaf, it has happened
                                         Over and over a million or perhaps
                                         A billion times before, a simple
                                         Moment of discovery in a growing mind.

                                        This leaf is a metaphor, its knowledge
                                        Is nothing new, it contains no secret
                                        Ingredients which will enlighten
                                        Mankind, thus ending our sorrows.

                                        But this child with mottled sunlight
                                        On its busy face and dirt between barefoot
                                        Toes has gained a process, has seen
                                        The wonder of life in a pale green leaf.

                                        And this process, this crystal moment
                                        Of discovery, if nurtured and given other
                                        Leaves of life to feed this growing mind,
                                        Could light our way in the darkest night.

                                        So look past the dirty feet, the wind
                                        Swept hair into the clear eyes which,
                                        Without knowing, seek to find the universe
                                        In a solitary leaf of the sycamore tree.

(Written May 2, 1992)

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