Sunday, February 5, 2012

# 31:  I believe I fell asleep and lost a month or two.  When I am settled into a comfortable location as I am now in Dade City Florida I get stuck in a rut and neglect important things like writing blogs and finding readers.  Not long after parking here I went north to Sheila’s house in The Villages where John Causland, an amateur astronomer, gave his presentation.  I also went back to the community center there for a study group meeting a few weeks later.  Finally I will have a brief comment on a quotation I found recently.

Divine love does not merely forgive wrongs; it absorbs and actually destroys them. The forgiveness of love utterly transcends the forgiveness of mercy. Mercy sets the guilt of evil-doing to one side; but love destroys forever the sin and all weakness resulting therefrom. Jesus brought a new method of living to Urantia. He taught us not to resist evil but to find through him a goodness which effectually destroys evil. The forgiveness of Jesus is not condonation; it is salvation from condemnation. Salvation does not slight wrongs; it makes them right. True love does not compromise nor condone hate; it destroys it. The love of Jesus is never satisfied with mere forgiveness. The Master’s love implies rehabilitation, eternal survival. It is altogether proper to speak of salvation as redemption if you mean this eternal rehabilitation.”  The Urantia Book (2018.1) (188:5.2)

The Villages where Sheila’s house is located is nearly an hours drive directly north from where I am parked; I heard that there are 40,000 golf carts there but I don’t think quite all of them were on the prowl when I was there.  They even have special paths and bridges for them so they can be driven to nearby strip malls and such and it covers parts of three counties. (I saw a special about it on PBS recently.)  The presentation by John Causland was most interesting and informative.  There were perhaps about twenty people there, some were not readers of The Urantia Book but were interested in the astronomy he discussed.  He presented his evidence that the minor sector of our Superuniverse corresponds to what we call a galaxy.  After the meeting there were munchies as we waited for it to get dark enough to observe the stars.  There was a homemade telescope consisting of a cut off scuba tank and optics from surplus military equipment.  We were able to see the Pleiades among other objects.  By the way Sheila is not in the above photograph because my camera was not behaving, the timer would not work with the flash, perhaps the battery was weak.

The study group at The Villages is conducted by Dr. Dale Sams.  As shown in the above photograph, the community center is lushly appointed and very comfortable.  They studied Paper 14, The Central and Divine Universe.  Some groups prefer to read and some use a recording, this group uses the recording.  After the meeting Dr. Sams asked if I wanted to conduct the next meeting.  I am still considering (the meeting is next weekend).

This sunrise was just a few days ago; one of the joys of getting up early to exercise is seeing such wonders.

In the following quotation I have made a few minor changes (as noted), see if any of this is relevant to our society.

Even a good religion could not save a great [nation] from the sure results of lack of individual participation in the affairs of government, from overmuch paternalism, overtaxation and gross collection abuses, unbalanced trade … which drained away the gold, amusement madness, [cultural] standardization, the degradation of woman, slavery and race decadence, physical plagues, and a … church which became institutionalized nearly to the point of spiritual barrenness.”  The Urantia Book (2074.4) (195:3.9)

With the exception of physical plagues and slavery, this fits our current society so completely that it could have come out of today’s newspaper, there have even been fears of plagues—global pandemics and our society does suffer from the cultural and emotional after-effects of slavery.  As for the rest they are relevant, e.g. the average individual cannot participate in our government, that being largely for the super rich and large corporations.  For paternalism there is our welfare state mentality.  And so on down the line, unbalanced trade, amusement madness, these are current headlines.  In this quotation however, The Urantia Book is not talking about our twenty-first century civilization, it is actually talking about the Roman Empire in the second century after Christ.  During this period the empire was starting its slide into oblivion while Christianity was starting its rise to prominence.  The parallels to our society are compelling enough that they should not be ignored; in fact this brings up the notion that our society may be heading toward a similar fate. 

“Urantia is now quivering on the very brink of one of its most amazing and enthralling epochs of social readjustment, moral quickening, and spiritual enlightenment.”  The Urantia Book (2082.7) (195:9.2)

There is not space enough in this short (and overdue) blog to go into details, but this is a conversation that we must begin, it is something we need to aware of and prepare for.  Are we going to sit back and watch as these “enthralling epochs of social readjustment” pass us by while we watch on the sidelines?  Are we going to participate and help shape these changes?  This is a necessary conversation.