Spiritual Growth III

Prayer of Gratitude

By Kathy Beckten

Prayers of spiritual aspiration and thanksgiving lead us up into worship and worship leads us to become like the one we worship. The following prayer is offered for that purpose. 


Oh Father, we wish to thank you for this glorious and gorgeous creation you have made for us and for this life in the flesh you have given us to experience emotions and thoughts filled with free choice and spirit potential. 

We are truly, deeply thankful for your Son, Jesus Christ, the greatest expression of your love, gentleness and spiritual maturity. 

May we be your instruments of expression, reflecting your divine spirit of truth, beauty and goodness. 

And in our social service to our fellow man, may we come equipped with tact, wisdom of mind, tolerance and the charm of personality. 

With this grace, presented to our companions, may we also remember to be gracious to ourselves. 

In our memories may we hold fast a sacred trust, the strength-giving and worthwhile episodes of life, building a reserve of galleries of beauty, goodness and artistic grandeur. 

The most noble of these treasured memories are recollections of superb friendships. The most precious of these being the relationship with you in spiritual worship. 

May this give us strength and courage in our daily living and in our solving the problems of an ever-changing existence. 

Through our hands may your will be done.


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A Few Words on Worshipful Problem Solving

By William Cooper

Worship is admiring and being grateful for all the wonderful qualities of God and longing to be like that yourself.

Worshipful meditation is the greatest of all methods of problem solving.  It is part thought, part inspiration, and part creative imagination of dialogue with God.  You describe your problem.  Then you think about and feel the values and qualities of God which might influence your choice.

Worship brings relaxation, illumination, courage, self-understanding, consciousness of union with divinity, relieves tension, removes conflict and very significantly augments the total resources of the personality.

Worship-communion augments energy to do spiritual work.  It transforms weakness to strength, fear to courage, mind of self to the will of God.  Communion with God is an experience of intimate sharing of being together in warm personal relationship of affection and acceptance. 

Worshipful practices, when persisted in, become habits.  Habits become character.  Character 

becomes spiritual maturity.

Try this:

Pick 3 higher values such as parental love, mercy, forgiveness, tolerance, patience, etc. and meditate reflectively on what they mean, how you feel as you experience them, and how they are interrelated.  See lists of higher values in Bill’s Book of Values at BillsBooks”N”Beyond.com.


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Entering the Kingdom

With suggested questions to discuss

By Kaye Cooper

For our material lifetimes, the Kingdom of heaven is not a place, a government or an organization.  It is connection and relationship.  It is the spirit of God teaching and leading the soul of man.  It is spiritual and it is real but it is not material.  UB 1536:6 /.137:8.9  

How does the process of entering the kingdom begin?  What is the prerequisite to entering the kingdom?

You initiate this process of living in the kingdom by wanting to be like your Heavenly Parent.  Wanting the values that express God’s goodness.  Seeking to know what is spiritually real.  Yearning for loving relationships.  Delighting in the beautiful and the good.  UB 1536:5 / 137:8.8

Jesus said that our striving to be like God must be done with the faith and trusting dependence of a little child.  What is the faith of a little child? 

Simply trusting, without the doubts that experience and adulthood in the material world tend to develop in us.  The complete trust that all that you need will be provided lovingly.  You will be cared for.  UB 1536:5./ 137:8.8  

What does it feel like to have the trusting dependence of a little child in your Daddy God?  (your Mother God, your friend God)

Secure.  Filled with assurance that comes not from the mind but from a place at the center of my chest.  A strength that holds me and won’t let in the fear that waits just outside that strength.

Jesus said, “If you would but believe that my Father loves you with an infinite love, then you are in the kingdom of God.”  How do you know your Heavenly Mother-Father-Friend loves you with an infinite love?  What is it within you that makes you believe this?  UB 1537:4 / 137:8.17

That feeling of being loved.  An affirmation from that place at the center of my chest.  Sometimes it is in words, but more often it is in a feeling (for want of a better word) that my mind interprets into words.

What effect does this love have on you?

Stabilizes, strengthens, uplifts, calms, reassures, and affirms me.  My desire to be like God constantly grows stronger and deeper as a result.  God’s love pours through me and to others – changing the way I see them, changing the way I feel about them, changing the way I treat them.

Once we faith-discover ourselves as cherished children of our Heavenly Parent (Friend), we will desire to be taught and led by the spirit of God.  It happens naturally as a result of the experience of being loved.  How are you taught and led by the spirit of God?  What do you experience?  

Feelings, confirmations, words, pictures, the voices or examples of other people, media articles, books, coincidences, surprises, unconscious direction, changes of mind during sleep. All of these teach me.  The experience is mostly experience of insights and meanings falling into place.

What are you taught?  What are you led to do?

What I am taught:  how to see through the superficial to the real person or the real situation, how to see people as weak rather than wicked, compassion, objectivity, strength of character, patience, interest in people rather than what they can do for me, to laugh rather than get upset, to be aware of the people around me, to think in terms of needs. These are all lessons in being more loving.

What I am led to do:  to listen, to watch for needs, to give with joy.

What we are led to, expressed in one word, is “service.”  We are attracted to it, not coerced by guilt.  It is not a test we have to pass.  To be led to service is a spiritually natural outcome of the changes within us.  Jesus said it this way, “And when the feelings of service for your fellow men arise within your soul, do not stifle them; when the emotions of love for your neighbor well up within your heart, give expression to such urges of affection in intelligent ministry to the real needs of your fellows.”   UB 1745:1 / 157:2.2 


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We All Need Love…Now!

Kaye Cooper 2020

In times of uncertainty, confusion, and even fear, we all need the comfort and reassurance of love more than ever. Parents and children, friends and strangers, leaders and victims—everyone needs more love. How do we squeeze out more love for those around us, especially our families, when we desperately need to be loved, ourselves?

An answer? Find more sources of love to give. Stick with me now! That may sound impossible, but I want to share with you where I have found the love to give. You have probably already tapped this well of love within you without realizing its source and what an endless supply is available for the asking.

Receiving love is important but giving love refreshes one’s soul too. You get a love benefit from having love flow through you. Have you ever heard a baby cry when you are really tired? If you put aside your own need and discover the compassion to comfort the child, you have connected with the Source of love.

What is it that makes us able to overlook our own weariness and need? You may already have an opinion. I believe that our connection with Spirit gives us the capacity to forget our own needs to help another. Mixed in with all our emotions, thoughts, and physical bodies, we are spiritual beings, as well—children in a spiritual family. And we are connected to the universal source of all selfless love. When we see others (such as that distraught baby) with our spiritual eyes, we can draw to us the love we need—and the strength, wisdom, and courage. So there is a spiritual source of love that we can tap into in order to pass it on to others.

Try it now.

Let’s shift to an exercise of tapping-in and passing-on love. Think of someone you care for and appreciate—someone you know personally. Relax for a moment. Close your eyes if you wish. Imagine this person close to you. Open your heart to appreciate him or her. Focus on the things you appreciate about your loved one. Allow a grateful feeling to expand in your chest. Feel gratitude growing stronger and stronger. See them as the best they can be. This is seeing them as Spirit sees them.

As you progress toward seeing with more spiritual vision, notice your understanding gradually begin to change. Your spiritual eyes see people more like a loving parent sees a precious young child, as full of potential for goodness, as growing, maturing, and as having a marvelous destiny—you view them with gentleness and understanding, without anger or blame.

None of us will be perfect at spiritual vision because, after all, we are all very immature spiritual beings. Nevertheless, seeing with spiritual eyes can change the way we feel. The more loving we feel, the more empowered we are to express our concern and appreciation to another. The more we make the effort to use our spiritual eyes, the stronger our connection to the Source of all love. Continue to explore what you see and feel for a few more moments.

In your everyday life, allow new spiritual love to flow through you to others. Spiritual love is appreciation, kindness, gentleness, trust, graciousness, respect, desire to benefit the other person, and much more high, ethical, unselfish treatment of others. Use this method frequently and you will grow deeper in your spiritual connection, clearer in your spiritual vision, and stronger in your capacity to give your family and friends love in all circumstances!
Peace be with you!


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Rodan’s Philosophy of Living

And His New Religion of Maturity

Revised August 2020 William Cooper

A dictionary definition of “philosophy”:  A system for guiding life.  A body of principles of conduct, religious beliefs, or traditions.

Rodan was an extraordinary philosopher of Jesus’ time and a follower of Jesus.  His writings are lost to history.  He was a Greek Jew of Alexandria in Egypt.  He visited Jesus’ camp at Bethsaida for a period of time and carefully observed the way Jesus lived his religious life.  He commented on Jesus’ practices with strong approval.  It is a high honor that he is the only mortal given space for presentation of his beliefs in several pages of the Fifth Epochal Revelation of truth to this planet.  This honor suggests that his ideas are of particular value to us and deserve our special attention. 

 Rodan spoke directly to two things the Urantia Book revelators identified as centrally important. 1) He was a careful and educated observer of the religious life of Jesus and how he lived it—Jesus’s art of living. 2) He was an advocate of personal religion based on a philosophy of living in cooperation with God and with the goals of finding God and becoming like him.  The Urantia Book salvages these lost achievements of Rodan by presenting them in detail.  The following comments explore 1) Rodan’s philosophy of pursuing really startlingly ambitious goals of God consciousness and Godlikeness, 2 ) Rodan’s admiration of Jesus’ art of using spiritual resources directly in solving life’s problems, and 3) the way Rodan connected his philosophy, Jesus’ gospel and Jesus’ art of  spiritual living into a new and superior religion .

Rodan’s Philosophy

Goals, ideals, and the new religion of maturity

UB reference: (P.1774:6 – 1775:1) [161:1.14-15]

Rodan observed, “In a continually changing world, in the midst of an evolving social order, it is impossible to maintain settled and established goals of destiny if they are based only on what history and the current circumstances indicate goals should be. Stability of personality can be experienced only by those who have discovered and embraced the living God as the eternal goal of infinite attainment. And thus to transfer one’s goal from time to eternity, from earth to Paradise, from the human to the divine, requires that a person shall become regenerated, converted, be born again; shall become the re-created child of the divine spirit and thus gain entrance into the family of God. All philosophies and religions which have goals that fall short of these ideals are immature. The philosophy which I teach, linked with the gospel which you preach, represents the new religion of maturity, the ideal of all future generations. And this is true because God, our ideal, is final, infallible, eternal, universal, absolute, and infinite. 

“My philosophy gave me the urge to search for the realities of true attainment, the goal of maturity, of Godlikeness. But my urge was impotent; my search lacked driving power; my quest suffered from the absence of certainty of directionization.  I did not know for certain where to find God. And these deficiencies have been abundantly supplied by this new gospel of Jesus, with its enhancement of insights through seeking the leading of the Inner Spirit, elevation of ideals, and settledness of goals by wholehearted joining in God’s goal of uniting the entire universe by the attraction of love. Without doubts and misgivings, I can now wholeheartedly enter upon the eternal venture. 161:1.15 (P.1775 – §1)

Questions to ponder:

  1. What is the ideal of this new religion of maturity which Rodan boldly says is “final, infallible, eternal, universal, absolute, and infinite?  Is pursuing and progressive achievement of Godlikeness all of these things? 
  2. Rodan’s search for the “realities of true attainment” was lacking “driving power and certainty of directionization. He says his deficiencies were supplied by three aspects of Jesus’ new gospel and his art of living: enhancement of insights (experiencing insights from the Spirit Within), elevation of ideals (aspiring to goodness like God), and settledness of goals (becoming like God and working with God to achieve God’s goals). Can we see how his philosophy would help us in our search for insights, ideals, and settled goals?  Would becoming an ever more capable partner with God and the celestial family in implementing God’s plan for all time and all space give you driving power and certainty of directionization regardless of changing of intermediate goals caused by increasing complexities over time?


Philosophy of Remastering the art of living

UB reference: (P.1772:4) [160:1.3]

The art of living is exercising creativity in adjusting to society’s here and now condition while maintaining loyalty to the ultimate objective.  The art of living is the art of not losing one’s way while negotiating the chaos.  The art of living reconciles the goal with the way things are, the way things should be with the present situation.  The art of living applies principles and habits of character (values) to define the correct present action. 

 “The more complex civilization becomes, the more difficult will become the art of living. The more rapid the changes in social usage, the more complicated will become the task of character development. Every ten generations mankind must learn anew the art of living if progress is to continue. And if man becomes so ingenious that he more rapidly adds to the complexities of society, the art of living will need to be remastered in less time, perhaps every single generation. If the evolution of the art of living fails to keep pace with the technique of existence, humanity will quickly revert to the simple urge of living—the attainment of the satisfaction of present desires. Thus will humanity remain immature; society will fail in growing up to full maturity. 

Questions to ponder:

  1. Based on your own observations, reflections, insights, do you think/believe that we have come to a time when the art of living needs to be remastered every single generation in order to keep pace with the technique of existence? If so, what does remastering the art of living entail? [ For the children of God, remastering the art of living means reconsidering what love should do in the changing circumstances.  That actually should be a constant concern, not just an occasional one.]
  1. How do changes in social usage complicate the task of character development?  Some changes in social usage which complicate character development include changes in gender equality, changes in sexuality norms, extensions or contractions of democracy, attitudes toward abortion, pregnancy prevention, universal suffrage, racial fairness, economic fairness, equal opportunity, and spiritual versus material purpose for life.  Is all life sacred?  Is it ok to cheat the ignorant, the poor, the weak and everyone else so long as it is for your own benefit?  Does the accumulation of immense wealth in the control of a very few at the same time many suffer from insufficient necessities or comforts suggest the need for adjustments in the values of those in power?  Does humanity’s damage to nature call for readjustments in the art of living or will the Rodan-Jesus philosophy and art of living continue to serve?  Does the material and ethical destructiveness of warfare suggest we must find other ways to resolve disputes?  Does humanity show signs of reversion to the simple urge of living, the attainment of the satisfaction of present desires?

Jesus’ Art of Living According to Rodan

Jesus’ art of the mastery of dependable techniques for solving life’s problems

UB reference (p.1774:3)[160:1.11]

Rodan said: “I am deeply impressed with the custom of Jesus in going apart by himself 

  • to engage in these seasons of solitary survey of the problems of living 
  • to seek for new stores of wisdom and energy for meeting the manifold demands of social service 
  • to quicken and deepen the supreme purpose of living by actually subjecting the total personality to the consciousness of contacting with divinity 
  • to grasp for possession of new and better methods of adjusting oneself to the ever-changing situations of living existence 
  • to effect those vital reconstructions and readjustments of one’s personal attitudes which are so essential to enhanced insight into everything worth while and real. 
  • to do all of this with an eye single to the glory of God – to breathe in sincerity your master’s favorite prayer, “Not my will, but yours, be done.” 

Questions to ponder:

  1. If you go apart with God as Rodan observed Jesus doing, what does it feel like?  Don’t guess.  Do it and feel it. 
  2. What does it mean to “actually subject the total personality to the consciousness of contacting with divinity”?  What does it feel like?
  3. Does going apart with God “quicken [make more alive] and deepen [give greater meaning] to the supreme purpose of living”?  Is character development by deity values incorporation the supreme purpose of living?
  4. Can we do it? How do we do it?  Rodan observed that Jesus’ technique was to go apart and visit with God about everything.  Is that the way? 
  5. Ask your Inner Spirit how to incorporate contact with spirit into daily life.

The benefits of spiritual communion to one’s art of living

UB reference (P.1774:4} [160:1.12]

Rodan said: “This worshipful practice of your Master brings: 

  • that relaxation which renews the mind. 
  • that illumination which inspires the soul. 
  • that courage which enables one bravely to face one’s problems. 
  • that self-understanding which obliterates debilitating fear. 
  • that consciousness of union with divinity which equips man with the assurance that enables him to dare to be Godlike.

 “The relaxation of worship, or spiritual communion as practiced by the Master, 

  • relieves tension, 
  • removes conflicts, and 
  • mightily augments the total resources of the personality. 

And all this philosophy, plus the gospel of the kingdom, constitutes the new religion as I understand it.”

Rodan was talking about his philosophy of setting and pursuing the goal of Godlikeness linked to Jesus’ good news that we are children of God and can have a relationship of friendship and constant guidance from God as being the fundamentals of a new religion. 

Questions to ponder:

  1. What is debilitating fear?  Is it fear of failure that prevents you from acting?  Is it fear of ridicule, of loss, of punishment, of misinterpretation? 
  2. What kind of self-understanding can obliterate debilitating fear? Is it understanding who you really are and the consequences, responsibilities, and privileges that being a child of God brings? Is it the reassurance that you really do know what is right to do?
  3. According to your personal understanding, what does it mean “to dare to be Godlike”? What can happen when we dare to be Godlike?  What are the benefits?  What are the risks?
  4. Can you recall a personal example of how spiritual communion relieves tension and/or removes conflicts?  What do you do?  What happens?  What is your experience?
  5. Rodan speaks of “the total resources of the personality” which spiritual communion will “mightily augment”? What do you think he is referring to?  The total resources of personality would include every influence a person could bring to bear on an issue.  These would include psychological powers (self confidence, optimism, self encouragement), intellectual ability (define the problem, identify possible solutions, outline an action plan), spiritual power (engage spiritual resources through prayer, worship, meditation and receptivity), power of creative imagination (ability to frame the issue differently to take advantage of the barriers), and the physical resources of speech and action.  Is it possible that communion unifies these resources and gets them working together and stable?


Rodan found in Jesus’ gospel of the fatherhood of God and individual relationship with God the missing aspects of his philosophy of living.  Rodan’s philosophy said that the individual’s goals should be to know God and to become like him.  But the philosophy lacked the motivation and the means, the why and the how to do this.  Rodan saw in Jesus’ art of living by active and intimate association with God and following the leading of God, the means to know and to become like God.  He saw in the fatherhood of God the promise of a noble and grand destiny of service in achievement of God’s objectives, doing the will of God, thus providing both the confirmation of the possibility of becoming like God and the motivation to engage in the effort. In the unification of these elements of philosophy, gospel and art of living, Rodan saw the possibility of a worthwhile new personal religion.  And what a religion it can be!


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Developing Spiritual

Relationship with God

and the Cosmic Family

by William Cooper

Talking Things Over with God

Jesus in his prayers as a youngster would just talk to his heavenly Father in the fashion he used with Joseph, who was a very attentive and caring mortal Father.  He would talk, ask questions, “listen”, discuss, and interpret his impressions.   It was embarrassing to Jesus’ parents that Jesus did not observe the forms and fashions of prayer for their religious culture and he was open and obvious about it.  Like us, Jesus was often not certain exactly what God’s response was, but he was sure that God was responding.

As Jesus matured and began to understand who he was, he continued to relate to the I Am in informal discussion mode.  He was using this mode of prayer when he prayed repeatedly in Gethsemene.  Talking things over with God makes God very real and near, which he is.  God will respond to even the faintest indication of faith.  I think that attempting to intuit God’s responses to us is more than a faint flicker of faith.  To attempt such is an extremely appropriate application of faith.  God would never fail to respond to such an act of faith.  Seriously, try it.  This prayer practice promotes a rich and constant relationship with God, Spirit and our cosmic family.

Commitment to Spiritual Family

Jesus tried to teach his followers that he was here to establish the Family of God on earth.  They were too much caught up in the concept that the Messiah would come and found a material kingdom.  So, Jesus altered his approach to talk in terms of a kingdom.  He taught that the kingdom he came to found was not an earthly kingdom but rather it was/is a kingdom in the hearts of people who follow the leading of the spirit within each person.  This inner kingdom he described as presided over by a loving and patriarchal king.  And this is true, but it is not his preferred concept.  He wanted us to see the spiritual reality, that engulfs our material reality, as a family that has our personal and collective welfare as a central and constant concern.  To Jesus, family was not merely a kinship, it included a purpose of taking care of the family enterprise of pursuing God’s plan.  God’s plan is to knit together the cosmos by the attraction of the love and goodness of God.  This plan includes high adventure of our being a growing and serving part in expanding the inhabited and unified cosmos.  It includes participating actively in our deity parent’s plans and thereby advancing in becoming like God, deity ourselves.

Jesus said if you believe that God loves you with an infinite love and follow the leading of the spirit within your heart, then you are in the family of God.  That sounds kind of cool but what are the consequences, expectations and opportunities?

Let’s stop just a minute and consider the difference in the way we feel first when we see our eternal destiny to be a loyal servant of God the good king. (Pause) Is that exciting to you? Now, second, feel what it is like to look at yourself as a beloved and privileged child of God and of the vast, loving family of God, whose destiny is to choose a personal path to grow up to be like his / her parent.  Now, is that exciting to you? (Pause)  I hope you can feel the difference.  I certainly can.  Now back to the expectations, opportunities and consequences of this status.

One consequence is the opportunity for an eternal life of service to God’s ongoing adventure with love.  I call God’s adventure of fostering and proving the truth of the effectiveness of love via experience,” the family business”.  This is what God and all creation are currently doing.  This has been going on for trillions of years and will continue into eternity, will never end.  We will never run out of important things to do.  Ours is not a static job or a bit role to play as a servant at a king’s court.  The family of God provides progressively more and more responsible roles for all of its members.  As recipients of Adjusters and of personality, there is no known limit to how far we may progress in eternity.  Our progress entails study, service, mastery of power, responsibility, loyalty to God’s will and all of these with the love, graciousness and generosity of our divine parents.

The Family of God is so vast that we lack words for the number of its members but everyone in the family who is pursuing the family business is devoted to achievement of God’s good, gracious, generous and merciful goals –infinite love permeating everyone, everything and every action.  In committing to God’s family business, we are committing to join all other family members in humble efforts to achieve love, to enthusiastically pursue the way of love and to institutionalize it as a living, enlarging practice for all.  Joinder in this family and its business is God’s plan for us all.

There is a great deal more that can be said about spiritual family.  It can be, after all, the core around which each of us can form our philosophy of living.  But the last observation I want to make in closing is that all of the members of the spiritual family want all of its members to succeed in doing and fostering God’s way of love and will help each other achieve that goal in any way consistent with God’s will.  Just ask and then listen and follow expectantly.


Letter to and From Mom and Dad

Now let’s take about 5min to write a quick note to Mom and Dad about their spiritual family.  You might want to be grateful.  You might want to explore with them what spiritual family means to you.  How do you feel about being a member of such a vast, purposeful and mutually supportive spiritual family?  Examine the extent of your desire to participate. [Allow 5 min.]

Time is up.

But don’t put your pen down.  Now take 5 min to write what seems to you to be the response Mom and Dad would make to you.


Developing Relationship by Conversation

Ask key and/or immediately relevant questions.  Use a form of question and answer dialog. You ask the question and you imagine an appropriate answer from the Spirit Within and you make notes.

In circumstances usually of quiet contemplation I ask how to take known macro principles of God’s will and interpret them to fit my immediate micro needs.  Some examples are:

  • How can I be loving to this person or even this thing?
  • How can I truly forgive disloyalty or betrayal?
  • Contempt and anger must go or at least be diminished.  How can I do this?
  • How can I contribute love, mercy, truth, beauty and goodness to improve this situation?
  • What higher value do I need to apply here to adjust my attitude or that of another?
  • How would applying acceptance, inclusion and respect help this situation?
  • How can I be courteous, generous, trusting and charming in anticipated difficult circumstances?
  • From where I am right now, how can I make good come from this?
  • In the face of apparent failure, what can I learn from this?

You may say, ”But Bill I already ask myself these things.”  And I reply, “That is wonderful, but do you ask these as questions to your human experience and wisdom alone or as questions explicitly directed to your spiritual guides and tutors, of which there are many.”  There is a strong spiritual quality, even an urge to action, when you address your spiritual helpers and seek to be sensitive to their responses.  This ask, listen, interpret and act/respond process builds relationship that becomes very real, very revealing of truth, beauty, goodness and Love.


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Why The Urantia Book Now?

By  Meredith Sprunger Fort Wayne, Indiana

Editors’ note: This article was first printed in the September 1981 issue of YOU-BE, a magazine of opinion published by The Tortoise, 1306 34th Avenue, San Francisco, California It was reprinted in The Circles by permission from the author and the YOU-BE

The growing edge of evolutionary religion today has arrived at basically the same religious philosophy as we find in  The  URANTIA Book.  Many religious leaders are presenting views almost identical with Urantia Book teachings.  So it is philosophically appropriate to ask, “Why was The Urantia  Book given to our planet when evolution is accomplishing the same goals?”

There are probably many more reasons for this action than any of us know; but, fundamentally, revelation is given because it is an effective expediter of evolution and saves aeons of time.  A second and related question is, “Why does God lead individuals to become missionaries of new and enlarged truth when this action causes opposition and persecution in their own families, among their friends, and in society?” The preponderance of rational thought and “sensible” human wisdom cautions against such controversial ministry.  A committee of contemporary friends would have almost certainly advised Moses against his mission to revitalize a group of Hebrew former slaves and with this unlikely group spearhead a new religious awakening. They would have told Jonah that it was absurd that he should attempt to reform Ninevah.  Paul was told that he was mad to assume the Christian gospel was the wave of the future and that he deserved death for going about stirring up religious and social unrest.  The ways of God often do appear to be absurd, or even evil to a great many people 

Many of these missionaries of the past have been reluctant messengers.  Moses tried to escape by pleading inability.  People would not listen to him.  He was not a public speaker.  Jonah fled to the sea.  Paul suffered blindness and intense mental anguish; but eventually he followed God’s inner leading in his life.  Doing so does not usually lead to a life of ease or popularity.  

I have long felt a calling to bring a knowledge of The URANTIA Book to the religious and educational leaders of our culture.  I have tried to examine this sense of calling critically, to question it, even to ignore it.  But, if I am to keep my integrity of soul, I cannot deny it.  As Paul Tillich points out, we must have the courage to be, to actualize our authentic selves.  I have tried, therefore, to follow this inner guidance.  I believe an outreach ministry of The URANTIA Book should be activated now; indeed, that it is past due.  If  this is the Father’s will for me (which I believe), why?  I am not sure that I know.  It is relatively easy to give “rational” reasons on both sides of this or any controversial issue.  I am  happy to share some of the insights which seem self-evident to me  as to why The URANTIA Book is needed in our culture now.  

After twenty-five years of thought and experimentation, I am convinced that only The URANTIA Book itself can bring about a spiritual renaissance.  Evolutionary bootlegging the teachings of the book merely adds, on the same level, to that which many religious teachers are now doing.  Only the integrated message of The Urantia Book, in my judgment, can transform our society in time to save our world from much evolutionary disaster and suffering.  

The growing edge of religious development in our society has already arrived at the essential truths of The URANTIA Book.  It is evolutionarily important that this vanguard of religious leaders know about The URANTIA Book.  Fundamentalists are even now denouncing the book and it is wise to acquaint mainline religious leaders with the book before reactionary zealots distort information about it.  The angels of the churches are in charge of supervising developments in the first one hundred years of the URANTIA movement.  

This illustrates the importance which the revelators place on the Christian Church being introduced to the fifth epochal revelation.  One fourth of this critical period has already passed with no serious, systematic ministry of outreach to church leaders.  It would be tragic to default in this crucially significant missionary responsibility.  

It may be later than we think.  

Demoralization and crime are commonplace.  Much of our world is experiencing chaotic conditions.  Terrorism threatens the social order in many areas.  Nuclear holocaust is an ever-present possibility.  Our world is in critical need of spiritual foundations which are large enough, solid enough, and have the spiritual power to both prevent catastrophe and give guidance and stability to the new age which is struggling to be born.  I believe The URANTIA Book has the greatest potential for serving in this capacity of any philosophical – religious resource now available to man.  It may be crucially important to the future of this planet.  In such a situation, to be primarily concerned with individualistic pursuits and cultish, ingroup, preoccupations may be analogous to Nero’s fiddling while Rome burned.  To have spiritual resources which the world desperately needs and fail to share them is difficult to understand or justify.  Do not misinterpret my concern.  I am not trying to persuade anyone else to engage in outreach ministry.  These observations are simply some of the reasons for explaining objective aspects of my own subjective sense of calling.  You must follow your own inner guidance.  


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Toolbox for The Inner Life

Collected by William Cooper
    1. Intentionally Foster a Strong Spiritual Inner Life.  Focus your efforts on attending to your spiritual inner life.  Your inner life is where your values and meanings in life reside.  It is also where you have the most control over your life.  Your inner life interacts with the Spirit Within which can be relied upon always to favor what is truly in your best interests.  Your outer life interacts with people, things and institutions that frequently are not in your favor and may even unfairly oppose you.  Your outer life is subject to bad judgment, accidents, betrayal, disloyalty, selfishness, envy, affairs and many other disturbing and destructive events and emotions. 
    2. Use Relaxation and Meditation.  Relaxation and meditation help you access your inner life where you can choose to affirm what you personally believe to be important and meaningful.  Relaxation and meditation will help you reconcile your outer life to your inner life.  Do not compromise the values and meanings of your inner life to fit your outer life.  That leads to dissatisfaction and unhappiness even in the presence of apparent material success.
    3. Go to Your Heart Place.  Your heart place is a place of calm refuge and beauty where you are safe and comforted. Remember the process: Relax; drift gently into the special place of calm you have mentally prepared; Experience the presence of the persons, pets, plants and things you have chosen to be there; enjoy; return when you are refreshed.
    4. Consult with Your Inner Spirit.  You have within your heart a reliable spirit counselor.  If you will consult this spirit especially regarding meanings and values and morals and ethics you will receive high quality advice on attitudes and behaviors that will benefit you with a happier and more productive life.  The process is simple.  In calm circumstances if possible, ask for help as specifically as possible.  Wait in silent receptivity for a few minutes to see if any impressions present themselves immediately.  Remain receptive and expectant as you go about your life for relevant impressions and insights.
    5. Optimism, Expectation and Cooperative Attitude.  These are your allies in achieving anything.  Believing you can achieve something is the starting place of success.  What you believe is possible, you may attempt.  What you attempt, you might achieve.  What you do not try, has no chance.
    6. See with New Eyes. Seeing a situation with new eyes is a useful process in many circumstances, especially as preparation for forgiveness.  This process applies imagination to explain an offense as understandable and forgivable behavior.  You do this because bearing a grudge, resentment or fear is so damaging to you spiritually that you should risk forgiving even in the absence of apology or expressions of regret.  The forgiver benefits even if the forgiven does not.  Seeing with new eyes intentionally seeks an alternative understanding of events from a higher spiritual perspective of compassion, empathy, error, generosity of spirit, etc. 
    7. Cool Down and Open to Spirit.  Your capacities are measurably improved when your interactions with others (and self ) are as free of anger, fear and suspicion as possible.  That is the cool-down benefit of this process.  Opening to the spirit intends to access the rich inner source of caring for the other person’s needs as much as your own.  When you do this, compromises to everyone’s satisfaction are often possible and peaceful interaction is to be expected.  The spirit will always lead you to treat the other person as you would like to be treated.
  • Focus on what is ideal and Right.   Your inner life is where you are free to define what is ideal and right.  What is ideal and right is what you want to support and advocate in your outer life.  Life may force compromises but betrayals or intentional hypocrisy are to be avoided.  They will certainly lead to unhappiness.
  • Respect your feelings.  Your feelings mean something.  They are not necessarily answers or even indications of truth but they should be considered.  They certainly affect your behavior.  If you understand them, they can have a rational and appropriate effect.  If you do not, they will have an effect that is haphazard and often not beneficial.  Ignore your feelings or surrender to them at your risk.
  •  Forgive.  Forgiving frees the forgiving person from the burden of spiteful thinking and scheming.  Most of the benefits of forgiving flow to the forgiving person.  So it is to the forgiver’s benefit to be generous, even lavish in letting go of hurt feelings from all causes.  Forgive as much as you can as quick as you can even when the offender is unworthy of forgiveness and unrepentant.  Forgiveness is that important to your spiritual growth.
  •  Imagine.  You have the gift of imagination.  Use it to imagine a good and rewarding path through life.  It is better to be optimistic without fantastic or miraculous events.  It is OK to strive to dream / imagine realistically but avoid applying your imagination cynically.  Imagining can be like mentally preparing yourself to succeed in future opportunities.  It has been proved repeatedly to work in sports and other skilled activities.
  •  Communicate Calmly. Expressing anger, fear, violence or agitation motivates others to get away from you.  Calmly confide and trust in others and observe how this builds relationships.  Relationships are real, eternal and worth the effort.
  •  Be Thankful.  Counting your blessings elevates your mood, relieves depression and helps you define what is important to you and what you should do to foster your own happiness.
  •  Stacked in Your Favor.  The universe is stacked in your favor.  No, really it is, when you are pursuing what you believe is right.  If you will presume that and act accordingly many wonderful consequences will follow.  You will undoubtedly suffer a lot of failure.  You will grow a lot in character.  You will also succeed a lot too, if you define success broadly. 
  •  Lavish Gift Giving.  There are more than these three valuable gifts you can afford to give lavishly to everyone.  In fact, You will profit by giving them.  You can count on an endless supply and widespread appreciation.
  • Forgiveness
  • Respect
  • Caring about all people 
  •  Positive Self Talk.  Tell yourself good things.  What you tell yourself, good or bad, confident or doubting will influence your behavior and your friends.  What you tell yourself, and believe, is more likely to manifest in your experience.

Use the Peacemaker’s Checklist.

  1. Try to calm down before you react.
  2. Do your best to avoid physical fighting.
  3. Avoid arousing anger or fear in your adversary.
  4. Avoid using put-downs, cursing, calling names or using profanity.
  5. Say what is on your mind but do it respectfully.
  6. Really listen (with an open heart) to what your adversary has to say.
  7. Try to see how you are responsible.  Don’t just blame the other person.
  8. Try to put yourself in the other person’s place to understand where they are coming from.
  9. Look for ways to solve the problem, not just win the argument.
  10. Be willing to compromise.
  •  Golden Rule. You have heard it all your life but it really is the most reliable spiritual rule.  Treat others as you would like to be treated if your roles were reversed.
  •  Practice Nonviolent Communication.  Be gentle and respectful with others.
  •  Don’t fear failure.  Take reasonable risks.  Failure is an especially good learning opportunity leading eventually to success.
  •  Live your values.  Live your life as loyally as you are able to the truth you have discovered. 


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You Are A Child of God, Yes You

WILLIAM Cooper   11-8-2016
Following his resurrection, Jesus made 19 appearances to groups of his followers. His message to all of them was that they should go into all the world teaching and preaching to everyone the good news that God is our Father and we are therefore family. Jesus instructed us to follow the leading of the spirit of God within us to do unselfish good in everything. That is the highly condensed or compacted good news. The good news in its fullness is extensive and perhaps infinitely extensive. The following is a first step in decompacting Jesus’s highly compacted good news message.
  1. You are a spiritual person who inhabits a physical body. They are both you, but the spiritual you is eternal. Your personality, character, and loving memories are part of the spiritual you and survive.
  2. God is your loving spiritual parent. God the Father is your spiritual father and loves you and cares for you as an excellent father. God the Spirit is your spiritual mother and loves you and cares for you as your mother. Both are very deeply, personally and constantly involved in your welfare and rearing. They are interested foremost in your spiritual rearing, welfare and education. You are a first generation offspring of these two aspects of the one God who is the originator and creator of all that is. You are not a slave, a distant grandchild, an adopted child nor merely analogous to a child of God. You are the real thing and you are loved, forgiven and enjoyed as a unique person.
  3. All people everywhere are children of God and therefore are entitled to the respect due to the immediate family of the most gracious, generous and powerful person in all of creation. Since all people are children of God, they are all brothers and sisters and should behave with love, compassion and mutual support for one another.
  4. All children of God have a fabulous, exciting and unique destiny which is important to them and to God and should be encouraged and cooperated with by all persons.
  5. God’s domain operates as a loving family, not an arbitrary kingdom of servants. The family needs every child. You have an important part to play. 
  6. An immediate two way personal relationship between God and each of his children (through prayer, worship, meditation and ethical living) is available to each child simply for the striving to have such a relationship.  The benefits of this relationship are immense, awesome and eternal. (But many of the benefits come through growth, insight and education over time.)
  7. Each child of God can experience the fatherhood of God and the motherhood of God. For each child, God as father has in mind an eternal career of growing knowledge and wisdom and progressive service to the family. As father, God will give power and authority to each child as soon as he/she is sufficiently educated to exercise power and authority responsibly. (Necessarily limited power in this mortal lifetime.) God as mother comforts, encourages and nurtures each child both physically and spiritually. From physical conception and forever thereafter, God as mother supports, cherishes and comforts every child without preference or qualification.  By paying attention to these parental ministrations, the children of God can get to know their spiritual parents. 

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Mechanics of Spiritual Power

 William Cooper Oct 2020

What is spiritual power?

Spiritual power is something you never expected to have, even in your afterlife.  However, it is something you already have.  The spiritual power you have for the most part is not the power to do miracles in defiance of laws of science.  The spiritual power you “have” is an attractive power and a transformative power which you can exercise by doing and championing goodness.  It is not something you control but rather a power inherent in mind that causes goodness to be attractive.  It doesn’t compel.  It attracts.  It doesn’t overwhelm will.  It appeals as an attractive choice.  

Spiritual power has a consequence when someone experiences goodness and appreciates it.  You can be the beneficiary of your own appreciation of goodness.  But you can also be the vector of spiritual power by portraying goodness to others.  It is in these ways that you “possess” spiritual power.  The experience of Spiritual power provides energy and motivation to love and serve others and to love and become like God.  It does this by influencing your emotions and your process of thinking.  It has the ability to transform a person from within by confirming rightness and by bestowing warm spiritual pleasure as a consequence of righteous desires and behavior.  It is an instinct placed in mind as a gift from deity for you to exercise spiritual power by doing good – fostering godlikeness.  

What does it do?

It works in at least three circumstances that I have experienced or observed in others.

  1. When a person chooses to do unselfish good for others, that opens a channel from spiritual sources that brings ability to the unselfish person to express spiritual blessings such as tolerance, faith, forgiveness, service, etc.  These behaviors and attitudes simply seem more appropriate and become easier to express and do.  So there is spiritual power in unselfish service.  
  2. When a person observes that another is expressing spiritual virtues, spiritual power causes an attraction or lure for the observer to want to live that way too.  There are spiritual effects on both the actor and the intended beneficiary as well as on third party observers.
  3. When one person prays for spiritual blessings for another, spiritual power touches the mind and soul of the other person and causes those blessings to become more easily available to the other person and the other person is helped to realize that they have choices to live more spiritually, more fully and more joyously.

What do we do to implement it?

Spiritual power is not magical.  It operates according to spiritual laws.  Sometimes it results automatically like gravity or magnetism operate automatically according to physical laws.  Sometimes spiritual power works more like chemistry where manifestation of spiritual power results from mixing faith, love, and other higher values in appropriate proportions to react together and express goodness.  We probably are not ready to actually be allowed authority to exercise control over undirected spiritual power but we can cooperate with the limited spiritual power made available to us so that its consequences can “automatically” happen.  Except they do not automatically happen.  They only happen if we act in ways that cause them.

The power made available for us to exercise is significant to our personal spiritual growth, to the progress of our planet in becoming more advanced and in the achievement of the goals of our cosmic family.  There is spiritual power attached to all of the following which need our cooperative involvement.

  1. Spreading the Gospel has magical spiritual power because the gospel message, when understood, unlocks life changing spiritual ministries directly to the mind and soul of the recipient.
  2. Living a life of loving service, tolerance, and forgiveness activates spiritual power because this attracts similar behavior in others.
  3. There is power in living by reasonable and appropriate faith because this leads to rich personal relationship with God and our cosmic family.
  4. There is power in trusting others because this causes them to want to be trustworthy.
  5. There is a power in falling in love with goodness because this expels evil desires.
  6. There is power in all higher values because they breed friendliness and peace.
  7. There is power in optimism and reasonable self-confidence because they cause confidence in positive change.
  8. Reliable concern for the benefit of others fosters trust and cooperation and that is powerful.

So you have a considerable amount of spiritual power available for your exercise.  But it does not happen independently of your reliable, generous, and loving actions and attitudes.


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Spiritual Power Definition

Spiritual power is energy and desire to love and serve others and to love God and become like him.  Spiritual power motivates us and gives us faith and energy to live according to what has meaning and value to us.  It does this by influencing our emotions and our process of thinking.  It has the ability to transform a person from within by confirming rightness and by bestowing warm spiritual pleasure as a consequence of righteous desires and behavior.  It works in at least three circumstances:

  1. When a person chooses to do unselfish good for others, that opens a channel from spiritual sources that empowers the person to express spiritual blessings such as tolerance, faith, forgiveness, service, etc.  These behaviors and attitudes simply seem more appropriate and become easier.

  2. When a person is present where another is expressing spiritual blessings, spiritual power causes an attraction or lure for the observer to live that way too.

  3. When one person prays for spiritual blessings for another, spiritual power touches the mind and soul of the other person and causes these blessings to become more easily available to the other person and the other person is helped to realize that they have choices to live more spiritually, more fully and more joyously.


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Truth about Communicating with Spirit

By William Cooper 8-10-10.


Every sincere effort to communicate with the spirit within has spiritual benefits for the person communicating. 

Popular concepts of what we can expect the Spirit to do in response to our requests for material rewards and miracles are so misguided(essentially magic), that they may have the ultimate effect of discouraging efforts to communicate because of disappointment.

It is experience of the spiritual consequences of communion with spirit that is important.  The spiritual consequences are joyful urges to be helpful, tolerant, unselfish, forgiving, encouraging, optimistic, generous, empathetic, etc.  

Communication with spirit is a tonic for health, focuses our attention on finding solutions to the matters we submit to the spirit and deepens the channels of our receptivity to spiritual blessings.  Sincere communications with the spirit are dispatched in faith that they are heard and answered, so the independent and substantial power of faith is also involved with the consequences of spiritual communion.  These are all benefits to the one who communicates with the spirit within.

Asking the spirit for spiritual benefits for another person expresses love for that person.  There is spiritual power in parental/brotherly love which flows to the soul, mind and / or physical energy of the intended beneficiary.  This spiritual power creates a spiritual blessing available to the intended beneficiary if they are willing and receptive.   

Children of the Spirit have a spiritual teacher to be listened to and followed.  The teacher is your personal inner spiritual mentor.    Close friendship with the inner Spirit is the most important thing we can achieve in this life and heartfelt communication is the best technique for pursuing relationship with the Spirit within.

Communication with the spirit within is the most potent spiritual growth stimulus. The Spirit answers our concerns by giving an increased revelation of truth, an enhanced appreciation of beauty and an augmented concept of goodness.  The spirit’s response to all requests is the gift of enhanced ability to bear (express) fruits of the spirit and then there are many beneficial consequences of bearing fruits of the spirit including better health, more energy, joy in living, optimism, charm, dependability and trust.  All of these generate positive power for success in all aspects of life.

Communication with the spirit gradually enables us to exercise more and more spiritual power (spiritual lure and attraction) arising from our characteristic attitudes and behaviors of loving service, unselfish devotion, courageous loyalty, sincere fairness, enlightened honesty, undying hope, confiding trust, merciful ministry, unfailing goodness, forgiving tolerance and enduring peace.  These are fruits of our connection with the Spirit within.  They are the consequences we can expect as a result of maintaining an inner communion with the Spirit indwelling the soul of each of us.  The experience of communication with the spirit establishes and matures the channels of receptivity to these spiritual gifts.

The Spirit is almost never going to fix things for us.  It will help us get through anything and everything that comes our way for whatever reason, even if our burdens are our own fault.  Sincere communication with spirit has many benefits other than getting our spiritual partner to fix things for us.  Conversation with spirit is a type of thought which helps us solve our own problems.   It has very valuable health and social benefits.  Spiritual communion enables the human ego to look both to self and to spirit for help.  For material help it initiates receptivity to the subconscious reservoir of mortal experience, memory and wisdom. For inspiration and guidance, spiritual communion encourages receptivity to contact with spiritual intelligence. 

Some petitions to spirit can be unethical, morally wrong.  A petition to spirit is unethical when the petitioner seeks for selfish advantage over his fellows.  Be fair in all your requests to the spirit.  Do not expect our spiritual Parent to love you more than his other children.  

Petitions to the spirit must never be a substitute for action.  All ethical spiritual communion is a stimulus to action and a guide for the progressive striving for idealistic goals.

Materialistic petitions to the spirit are destined to bring disappointment and disillusionment because humanity lives in a physical universe of law and order which the Spirit will not violate.  Selfish and materialistic petitions are beneficial only to the extent that they lead to human efforts and exertions that contribute to achieving the goals of those petitions.  Petitions to the spirit do not change the Spirit but they often effect great and lasting changes in the one who petitions in faith and confident expectation.  Spiritual communion is the ancestor of much peace of mind, cheerfulness, calmness, courage, self-mastery and fair-mindedness.

Only under very rare circumstances does petitioning the spirit have any direct effect on one’s physical circumstances.  The zone of effectiveness of requests to the spirit relates most directly to the spiritual and psychological attitudes of the person communing. 

Requests to the spirit will not cure real and organic diseases but they contribute enormously to the enjoyment of abundant health and to the cure of numerous mental, emotional and nervous ailments.  Even in bacterial disease, petitions to the spirit often add to other remedies. The sincere petition in faith is a mighty force for promotion of personal happiness, individual self-control, social harmony, moral progress and spiritual attainment. 

Spiritual communion is an efficient technique for approach to the realization of the reserve powers of human nature stored and conserved in the unconscious realms of the human mind. These include insight, experience, custom, education and wisdom.  Communion with the spirit is a sound psychological practice even aside from its spiritual significance. 

Problems are learning opportunities our spiritual Parent will use for our benefit. The Spirit is not absent, passive, overburdened or distracted.  He is actively and constantly involved in every aspect of every person’s life.  He uses the problems we face as opportunities for our character development.  While it is not appropriate to ask the Spirit to make your problems disappear, it is appropriate to ask the spirit for help in learning the available lessons and for calm and reassurance in the midst of the turmoil.

Words, posture and attitudes:

Spiritual communion is intentional communication with the Spirit.  Most people use words silently or out loud most of the time, but words are not really necessary.  You can communicate in feelings or images or music so long as you are communicating from your soul/heart your sincere longings, goals and desires for good, your love of truth or your appreciation of beauty.

Communing with the spirit with faith, hope and trust brings expectations of divine assistance which encourages personal effort and thereby makes the desired result more likely.  One who steps out in faith and takes the risks is sometimes successful even in the absence of divine intervention.  One who does not act has no opportunity to succeed.

Spiritual communion can be the personal and spontaneous expression of your soul toward the Spirit.  Communicating with the spirit should be a communion of the child with the spiritual Parent and the expression of fellowship.  Spiritual communion, when from the soul, leads to personal cooperation in the spiritual progress of one’s self and others.  The ideal communication is a form of spiritual communion (intimate spiritual sharing of thoughts and feelings) which leads to intelligent worship.  True spiritual communion is the sincere attitude of approaching the spirit within for the inspiration and attainment of your ideals.  

Spiritual communion is the way we make contact with our souls. This benefit of bringing the content of our souls to our conscious attention should motivate us to be persistent in our attempt to ascertain the Spirit’s will.  The answers to our questions about spiritual reality are in our souls.  The Spirit is a willing and generous giver of spiritual blessings and spiritual power. Persistence is not to change our spiritual Parent’s attitude but to change our preconceptions and prejudices so that our conscious minds may be receptive to the Spirit’s blessings.  Persistence gives spiritual insights repeated opportunities to drop into place.

When we commune with the spirit, we exercise too little faith.  Faith is more than belief.  It is trust in the Spirit to do its part in achieving its goals.  Genuine faith will remove mountains of material difficulty which may be in the path of soul expansion and spiritual progress. 

Commune with the spirit honestly, unselfishly, with fairness and without doubting.

Just talk things over with your spiritual Parent in a purely personal way. Do it often and regularly. Don’t be afraid to talk to the Spirit, but don’t undertake to persuade or change your spiritual Parent. 

Words are irrelevant to prayer. The Spirit answers the soul’s attitude, not the words.  Attitude does matter.  Our attitude should be faith filled and trusting.  We should sincerely believe in the Spirit’s good and loving wisdom in answering.  We should have no withholds in truly wanting our spiritual Parent’s will, not our own, to be done.  His will is the best of all possible outcomes.

The earnest and longing repletion of any petition when sincere and uttered in faith, no matter how ill-advised or impossible of direct answer, nevertheless always expands the soul’s capacity for spiritual receptivity. The soul’s spiritual capacity for receptivity determines the quantity of heavenly blessings (fruits of the Spirit, consciousness of the Spirit’s presence, peace, joy, etc.) which can be personally appropriated and consciously realized as an answer to our petitions.

Petitions to the spirit are heard and answered:

Opening the human end of Spirit-man communication makes the ever flowing stream of divine ministry immediately available.

The sincerity of any spiritual communion is the assurance of its being heard.  The spiritual wisdom and universe consistency of any petition is the determiner of the time, manner and degree of the answer.  The Spirit will not give us the requests of our foolish petitions.  While spiritual communion does not change the spirit’s attitude, it does change our attitude toward our spiritual Parent.  The unselfish motive of a spiritual communion gives it right of way to the divine ear.

Sincere communications of the longing of the heart are always answered.  Sometimes the answer is greatly delayed while the spirit world devises a better answer to meet the needs of the spirit of man.  Sometimes prayers are so vast they can only be answered later in our progressive spiritual growth; sometimes only when we reach Paradise.

Petitions are addressed to spiritual beings and must be answered in spiritual terms and all such answers must consist in spiritual realities.  Spirit beings cannot bestow material answers to the spirit petitions of even material beings.  Material beings can commune effectively only when they commune in the spirit. 

All spirit born petitions are certain of an answer.  Full personal reception of the answer may be time delayed.  The answer is seldom exactly what you asked for but the answer is never “No!”  The answer will bring comfort, calm and reassurance of personal spiritual safety.  It will be something spiritually and emotionally beneficial.

What to ask the Spirit to do:

Guard against the great danger of becoming self-centered in your petitions.  Avoid petitioning the spirit for yourself.  Ask more for the spiritual progress of your brethren.  Avoid materialistic requests.  Communicate in the spirit and for the abundance of gifts of the spirit.  Petition the spirit for the sick and afflicted but don’t expect this to replace the benefit of loving and intelligent ministry to their needs.

The most important request to the spirit is for knowledge of the will of the Spirit.  The next most important request to the spirit is for guidance over the pathway of earthly life.  This in reality is a request for divine wisdom.

Material things are not the province of requests to the spirit. 

The truest communication with the spirit is in reality a communion (intimate spiritual sharing) between man and the Spirit within.

Spiritual communion is not a technique of escape from conflict but rather a stimulus to growth even in the face of conflict.  Ask for insight into values, not things; for growth, not for gratification.

Ask for the welfare of family and friends and others but especially petition the spirit for those who curse you and make loving requests to benefit those who persecute you. It is easy to petition the spirit even for those who misuse you to bear fruits of the spirit.  After all, what you are asking for is for the desire to do good for others to take hold in their lives and to transform them.  This feels right and good for either a friend or an enemy.

When and where to commune with the spirit:

When should you commune with the spirit?  Commune with the spirit whenever the indwelling spirit moves you to express your inner relationship with our spirit Parent.  Any time or any circumstance is appropriate.  Commune when in trouble but not just then.  Commune also when all is well.  

Your real petitions, your personal, intimate declarations and requests should be in secret. Declarations of thanksgiving are appropriate both in personal communion with the spirit and group spiritual communion.  Petitions of the soul are a personal matter (secret).  All believers should ask sincerely for extension of the kingdom of heaven.  The kingdom of heaven exists when and where we encourage and allow the spirit within to lead us in doing the will of our heavenly Parent.

Laws of prevailing petitions

  1.  Sincerely and courageously face the problem.
  2. Industriously exhaust human capacity to adjust.
  3. Surrender everything to the transforming embrace of spiritual growth.  (Expect insights into truth, beauty, goodness, meanings and values.)
  4. Wholeheartedly desire the Spirit’s will.
  5. Dedicate yourself to action to do the Spirit’s will.
  6. Ask only for divine wisdom to solve specific human problems in the Paradise assent.
  7. Have Faith that your petitions will be answered.

There is quite a variety of types of spiritual communion including:

Expressions of pure gratitude and thanksgiving

Petitions for help

Communion – intimate spiritual sharing of thoughts and feelings with the Spirit

Consecration of self to the Spirit’s way

Consultation with the Spirit – thinking (inner dialog) with the Spirit

Communing with spirit to elevate thoughts to a higher and more spiritual level

Requests to the spirit for clarification of view point

Requests to the spirit for faith, optimism, hope, courage

Petitions for healing of mood, attitude or body

Requests to the spirit to make spiritual goals and means more vivid

Requests for inspiration and guidance to resolve the matters you are praying about

Petitions to the spirit for wise leadership

There are many good reasons why we commune with the spirit including:

We communicate for the comfort, reassurance and courage communing with the spirit brings to face life and to fight the battles against evil and doubt.

We petition the spirit to feel like we have done something.

We commune with the spirit because it elevates our mood.

We commune with the spirit because we feel the comforting love of our spiritual Parent.

We commune with the spirit because it reduces a burden or shares a joy.

Spiritual communion is an all-important practice.  It stimulates greater receptivity to spiritual gifts and it is the most potent spiritual growth stimulus.

There are a lot of material requests to the spirit which are not going to be answered in the terms requested. But there are also many consequences of spiritual communion which are highly beneficial and are insufficiently appreciated as answers to our petitions to the spirit.  These include:

Spiritual communion relieves stress.

Communion with the spirit elevates your mood and attitude.

Spiritual communion brings inner peace.

Communion with the spirit clarifies and corrects confusion about meanings and values.

Spiritual communion focuses your talents and mental and material assets on your problems, enabling you to answer your own petitions.

Communion with the spirit brings comfort, reconciliation and acceptance of what cannot be changed.

Spiritual communion relieves loneliness.

Communion with the spirit reinforces optimism, steadfastness and dependability.

Spiritual communion helps you reach for anything you value.

Communion with the spirit enhances self-control.

Communion with the spirit helps you value and love others.

Spiritual communion helps you feel valued and loved.

Spiritual communion improves your decision making ability.

Communion with the spirit and faith together cure many emotional and psychological illnesses.

Communion with the spirit often makes medical remedies more effective.

Spiritual communion builds hope, confidence, expectation and trust.

Communion with the spirit supports action and achievement.

Communion with the spirit stimulates spiritual growth.

The ideal form of communion with the spirit is a personal communion of fellowship with our spiritual Parent.  Communion with the Spirit is simply an event of intimate spiritual sharing of our inner life of aspirations, hopes, fears, loves and feelings.  Imagine the Spirit’s presence.  Imagine the Spirit’s responses.  Expect it to suggest in all circumstances how you can express loving and unselfish motivations.  Actually what you are imagining is true.  Your spiritual Parent is in fact present and hearing and responding to your concerns in a guiding, nondirective way.


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Memorable Truths and Considerations

By William Cooper
  1. You are a first-generation child of the God of all creation.  So, what do you expect you will grow up to be?
  2. You are material and spiritual in nature.  The material part of you is temporary.  The spiritual part survives and continues to grow.  What you achieve now toward spiritual maturity is real and lasting.  
  3.  This life is the important beginning of your eternal career, not a purposeless occurrence.
  4. We are supposed to be brothers and sisters, partners in each other’s lives.  We are supposed to be linked to one another by love, caring and respect.
  5. Your personal religion should be unique.  It should consist in following the leading of your own Spirit Within.
  6. Life has meaning.  We can choose to be an animal or a noble spirit being.  The animal part of us will die.  The spirit being will live forever.
  7. It is a great privilege to experience life on such an uncivilized planet.  It will help us understand and serve others in our eternal career.
  8. We can use our creativity to invent ourselves by imagining the best possible behavior and then managing ourselves to display that behavior.
  9. God is your parent.  Children just naturally grow up to be like their parents.  In fact they must work hard to avoid it.
  10. It does not matter how slow you go as long as you do not stop. (Confucius)
  11. When you have faults, do not fear to abandon them.  (Confucius)
  12. Inner beauty is far more significant than outer beauty.  Inner beauty    comes from loving, caring attitudes carried into action.
  13. Inner beauty, with a little encouragement, grows eternally and lasts forever.
  14. You can smell beauty from fresh mowed grass, cinnamon, wisteria, yeast bread baking, sea breezes.
  15. Practice love, forgiveness, service and respect.  They will reward you and all who know you.
  16. Love is the best action and the best reaction, always.  Love does good in all circumstances.
  17. Every living thing and person responds favorably to being loved.
  18. Love given and love received are both worthy rewards of living.  The joy of love given is ours to take by giving service and caring.
  19. An attitude of persistent, unselfish love works miracles of values transformation and good health in the person holding that attitude.
  20. Love grows vigorously when its seed takes root in a love hungry soul.
  21. Love can transform persons, cultures, and even entire planets. If you want a better world, love lavishly.
  22. With life as short as a half-taken breath, don’t plant anything but love.  (Rumi)
  23. Love serves.  It does not exploit.  Love is gentle, kind, forgiving, merciful and tolerant.
  24. Despise the sin but love the sinner.
  25. Respect virtue even in the sinner.  It proves the Spirit still dwells within.
  26. Love disciplines but it does not hurt, harm, or administer vengeance.
  27. Love should be our universal mode of behavior.  It has magical power on personal, social and political levels to achieve things that are super important and which nothing else can achieve.
  28. Love benefits both the giver and the receiver and even the observer.  All feel richer who recognize that the gift of love has been given.
  29. Love is the way of the Spirit Within.
  30. Love rules the universe.  Inevitably, love will one day rule this world and every heart in it.
  31. Slay evil with love.  Start within.
  32. Be aggressive and lavish with love.
  33. It is better to love too much than to love too little.
  34. Prayer communicates with God.  Faith acts according to his leading.
  35. Pray for spiritual growth (character development) because that is the purpose of life.  Learn to cope cheerfully and graciously with disappointment because that is the fast path to spiritual growth.
  36. You won’t find anything in life that gives you more pleasure than being of service to others.
  37. While love is the desire to do good for others, service is the action of doing good for others.
  38. Service is not just an attitude or desire.  It is good deeds.
  39. A lot of little services by many people will do. Serving as you pass by requires only modest levels of planning and commitment.
  40. A smile, a helping hand, courtesy, good attitude, cheerfulness, polite assistance; these are all services to others requiring no planning and no sacrifice.
  41. Don’t resist your urges to service when they arise.
  42. Service is how love gets expressed through action.  It is a primary way we develop our connectedness to others through love.
  43. Service is helping another achieve her worthy needs and goals.
  44. Service develops friendships.  If you want a friend, be a friend.
  45. To make a friend of someone, find something you know they want and do it for them.
  46. A few small services by many people does more to improve the world than the dedicated lives of a few saints.
  47. Service shows actual willingness to give one’s self and assets for the benefit of another.
  48. Service builds a mutual sense of relatedness on which all sorts of benefits grow.
  49. Service is a cause of love and it is a consequence of love.  Service / love is emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually very powerful, very attractive, and very inspiring.
  50. Service is love expressed in action and it participates in the immense magical power of love.
  51. Service extends the helpful hand of brotherhood and that is important.
  52. Allowing yourself to seek vengeance or to hold grudges involves great spiritual costs to you and to everyone related to you.  And we are all related to you.
  53. When you forgive another, you relieve yourself of the ugly burden of assessing the guilt and punishment of the offender and of determining how much they must suffer to pay their debt.
  54. When you forgive, you reopen the possibility of beneficial relationship.
  55. Forgiveness does not require forgetting.  It does require setting aside the desire to punish, to penalize or to even scores. When you forgive, you are saying “Here is a fresh chance to do right.”
  56. For inner peace and satisfaction, establish a continuous, constant, eternal relationship with your Spirit Within.
  57. Your thought will be clearer and higher quality if you meditate and think with God.
  58. The truth response in your heart guides you and counsels you on all things having meaning and value.
  59. Continual progress toward excellence of character is the objective and purpose of this life.  Excellence of character is not completed in this life, but direction can be reliably set.
  60. The values you actually live by are the building blocks of your character.  Your loyalty to your values stabilizes your character.  Your disloyalty to your values proves they have not yet become really a part of you.
  61. Your values are your attitudes and actions you base your life on. They are the way you distinguish and present yourself to the universe.
  62. Optimism is your ally. What you believe, you might possibly try. What you try, you might possibly achieve. What you do not try, has no chance.
  63. Your feelings mean something. Examine them. 
  64. Most of the benefits of forgiving flow to the person who forgives. Forgive as much as you can as quick as you can, even when the offender is unworthy or unrepentant.


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Why We Should Proclaim Jesus’ Message

By William Cooper

Jesus taught his apostles that there are five cardinal features of his core message. (Paper 170 Section 4 Paragraphs 8 -13 / Page 1863 Paragraphs 6-11) 

  1. Preeminence of the individual. God is concerned with each woman or man personally and directly. There is no involvement of tribe or priest required. Nor is apprenticeship in low orders of spiritual hierarchy required before we have personal and instantaneous access to God. You are a beloved direct spiritual child of God and he protects, educates, and supports you and is always present with you.


  2. The will as the determinative factor in human experience. You will succeed in progressing if you choose righteousness. Progress will not be withheld nor will it be imposed. It is your sacred right and responsibility to choose what you are becoming.


  3. Spiritual fellowship with God the father. You and the father are close personal associates. You have a parent-child relationship – intimate and familiar – unless you neglect or refuse to choose to have it. 
  1. The Supreme satisfactions of the loving service of humanity. Loving service is the way of joy, satisfaction, and eternal progress in attaining God likeness. It is all yours for the wanting and the doing. It is your choice again. 
  1. The transcendence of the spiritual over the material in human personality. As you choose to live the loving and serving life in all circumstances, you will create a spiritual self of God-like and eternal potential even while the physical origins of you melt into the material past. 

So according to Jesus that is what his message was and is.

The Spirit of Truth resides in this message. (Paper 178 Section 1 Paragraph 6 / Page 1930 Paragraph 3). Our loving service is the mighty social lever to uplift the races of darkness and the Spirit of Truth is our power multiplying fulcrum. Our loving service and the Spirit of Truth are supposed to work in partnership to achieve God’s goal of revealing truth to humanity. 

(Paper 34 Section 5 Paragraph 5 / page 379 Paragraph 5) 

The Spirit of Truth is poured out on all people but it is almost wholly limited in function and power by the individual’s personal reception of that which constitutes the sum and substance of the mission of the bestowal son. 

(Paper 128 Section 7 Paragraph 6 / Page 1417 Paragraph 5) 

The prime purpose of the bestowal mission was to provide God the experience of human life from the viewpoint of the human creature. This was required for Michael to achieve sovereignty over his universe. A second purpose of the bestowal mission was to make the supreme revelation of God to humanity. Accepting Jesus’ message constitutes the personal reception of the substance of the mission of the bestowal son to reveal God to man. In the process of his bestowal mission Jesus decided to teach a new religion – the religion of being led by the Inner Spirit into the doing of loving service. (This is the will of God for us.) 

In proclaiming Jesus’ message, human proclaimers are serving the John the Baptist herald function for the ministry of the Spirit of Truth to the souls of humanity. This herald function of declaring the good news puts those who accept it in a position to make meaningful choices to progress or not. It starts the person considering real and meaningful choices. It liberates the Spirit of Truth ministry to that person. 

Just to remind you of the consequences the Spirit of Truth can have if liberated by people accepting Jesus’ core message. (Paper 194 Section 2 / Page 2060 Paragraphs 2-7)

  1. The Spirit of Truth works to foster and personalize truth. (The truth is that all reality works to advance the Father’s will to unite all persons and things by the magnetic attraction of love. What advances God’s will is real. What does not, is not real.) Truth reveals what is real and how reality works.
  2. The Spirit of Truth works to destroy the believers feeling of orphanhood
  3. The Spirit of Truth helps people recall and understand the words of Jesus.
  4.  The Spirit of Truth helps to illuminate and reinterpret Jesus’s life on earth. 
  5. The Spirit of Truth helps believers witness to the reality of Jesus’ teachings and his life as he lived it. It provides a fresh interpretation for each believer and each generation.
  6. The Spirit of Truth leads all believers “into all truth, into the expanding knowledge of the experience of the living and growing spiritual consciousness of the reality of eternal and ascending sonship with God.” 

So why proclaim Jesus’ message? Because it is something that God trusts you to do and something of immense value to humanity and the spiritual family. It is partnering with God in achieving one of God’s spiritual purposes and it will be an exciting and entirely meaningful adventure. Without the proclamation of the good news, the mighty Spirit of Truth is almost powerless. The herald function is an essential part of the plan. 


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Spiritual Growth II


By Bill Cooper
Arlington, Texas 

The URANTIA Book tells us that it is all-important for us to bring our creature will into cooperation with our Father’s divine will. At first, even ascertaining our Father’s will seems to be beyond our capacity. But as we progress in understanding the nature of deity, we may begin to suspect that determining, identifying, or predicting our Father’s will even in particular circumstances, is relatively simple. Really, it must be rather simple to recognize His will, since virtually everyone is supposed to be able to do it. Furthermore, as we progress in understanding the nature of God and of all levels of Deity, knowing the Father’s will should become progressively easier. 

Our Father’s will for us, generally stated is that we should be perfect even as he is perfect. In personality manifestation the Father wills that we should grow to be like him. In becoming like the Father, we will be involved in an eternal career which will require us to observe, identify and incorporate his qualities. Whether in general or specific circumstances, we may determine the Father’s will by asking and answering this question: How should one who is potential Deity respond to these circumstances? My premise is that these questions of “What is God’s will? and “How do I do it?” can be reliably answered by our recalling and adopting the qualities and values fostered by our Father and his Deity descendants.  

We already have a great deal of accurate information about the nature of God presented to us in THE URANTIA BOOK. Our Father is fair, just, and merciful. He values and fosters truth, beauty, and goodness in all their endless manifestations. He is loving above all else and he is kind, patient and generous with all of his children. His love and charity for his children are wise. He does not smooth out all their difficulties, since to do so would deprive them of meaningful choices which provide their spiritual growth opportunities. He serves even us, the least in the hosts of his descendants. He is both the remote source and sustainer of everything and the immediately present and intimate personal counselor of personality progress for each of us. He is all of the higher values and virtues recognized by the best human philosophers and many, many more which we shall learn in the ages of progress ahead of us.

There are at least two ways of becoming more familiar with the nature of Deity. One way – the preferred way – is by experiencing Deity consciousness. By this I mean the intuitive rather than reasoning understanding of the qualities and values of Deity. Another way of knowing such things is by the less mysterious process of studying and learning the nature of the Father and other Deity Persons. 

Knowing God’s will in particular circumstances is an art involving an assessment of the circumstances, an analysis of our selfish inclinations toward the choices involved and a testing of the consistency of alternative responses with Deity qualities and values. The more clearly we identify the alternatives and the more thoroughly we identify the selfish or unwise aspects of our alternatives, and the more thoroughly we remember and adopt the Father’s qualities and values, the more reliable our prediction of the Father’s will is going to be. 

The Father’s will cannot be inconsistent with his nature. 


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A Dramatic Spiritual Experience

By Meredith Sprunger

Many people have dramatic experiences which change their whole lives. My 88-year-old uncle, for instance, told me of such an experience in his middle thirties. He underwent a serious operation and the surgeon concluded he would die. One night, two angel-like persons approached his bed and asked him if he wanted to live. He answered, “Yes”’ They countered, “Why?” He told them he wanted to pay his debts – he had a heavy debt on his farm. They told him they would grant his wish. From that moment he recovered dramatically, and this experience has influenced his entire life. 


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A Rare Privilege

By Billie Cooper
Rogers, Arkansas

One of the best techniques for helping your fellow man is to pray that he or she will have the needed strength to cope with life’s situations. You can help people you have never met or someone you know well. 

Several years ago, I was traveling by air between Dallas and Fort Smith, Arkansas. The weather was bad, and the plane was several hours late. I was waiting at the gate in Dallas for the plane to be called for boarding when I noticed a man who looked like he was heartbroken or perhaps had received a severe shock. He sat staring down at his hands. His only movement was an occasional shake of his body. He didn’t seem to know what was going on around him. He looked to me as if he wouldn’t be able to find his way onto the plane. 

When we boarded the plane, I waited until I saw him rise and walk toward the plane before I left my seat. I had planned to take him by the arm and lead him aboard if he needed help, but he made it on his own. After fastening my seat belt, I looked around. Directly across the aisle sat the man. I began to feel his pain very deeply. It was as if the pain was my own. I thought, perhaps I could offer to help. Or perhaps it would help to let him know I cared. Then the cultural programming of my generation “you are one sex, and I am another,” influenced me. I began to think he might misunderstand my concern. I felt that there just wasn’t anything I could do. Then there was the thought “Yes, there is. You can pray.” 

By this time, the plane was in the air. It was rocking from wing to wing. Lightning was flashing off both wings. In the quiet intimacy of the plane, I prayed that this man would have strength to stand his heartache. I had been praying for several minutes when I felt a hand on my shoulder. Looking up I saw the hand belonged to the man for whom I was praying. 

He said, “Thank you for coming to me.” (I had not left my seat.) “My mother died while I was delayed in Dallas. I have traveled thousands of miles to see her.” He reached out and asked me if I would mind holding his hand as he needed strength. ” I travel the world for a TV network,” he continued. ” I am weak tonight. Tomorrow I shall have to be strong for others,” Several times during the trip he reached for my hand as if he were drawing strength from the contact. When we arrived in Fort Smith, he deplaned with a simple, “Thank you.”

I never knew his name nor would I recognize him if I ever saw him again. I cannot even recall his features. To have such an experience makes one know that prayer is answered. What a privilege I was given. 


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Soaking in Values Visualization

2011 William Cooper

This is an activity based on a spiritual growth technique given to us by Sharon Porter and Kaye Cooper in their Joyful Living Program.  Following an exploration of higher values at a retreat at Belton, Texas in the spring of 2011, Sharon related a dreamlike insight she had during the night.  Her insight was that values are alive and vibrant.  They are full of spiritual energy.  They are not just words.  They have an ability to move about among people, to grow, to express themselves.  

Alive” means values grow, mature, act and adapt.    Here’s an analogy that helps me understand what “alive” means.  Compare a photograph of a puppy to the actual presence of an active and friendly puppy.  The picture is fixed, cute and unchanging, not alive.  It is a pretty piece of paper but you can’t have much of a relationship with a picture.  The puppy itself is affectionate, interactive and full of activity, surprise and joy.  It is alive in an extremely good way.  So in my analogy, values are alive, charged with energy and interactive like the puppy only they are alive in mind and in spiritual experience, not material experience.

Sharon led us in a brief activity in which we visualized ourselves soaking in a warm tub full of the value “gratitude.”  What follows is my effort to make a longer visualization out of Sharon’s exercise.  The intent is to allow the spirit within to make the value gratitude more real, alive and vivid while we are immersed (soaking) in its energy.  While we soak, we will think about and feel the spiritual power of gratitude.  We are using our imagination to open our awareness but the mind/spirit energy is real, not imaginary. 

[Pause 5 sec.]

Relax.  Breathe normally but deeply.  Breathe out tension.   Breathe in relaxation.  Feel your body relax. Breathe again and again.  You are now present and attentive on three real levels.  Your relaxed body is present.  Your mind is here.  You are spiritually present because you choose to be.    You are now relaxed in body, attentive in mind and alert in your spirit to engage in contact with the spirit of everything that is.

You are in a beautiful room carved entirely out of one huge piece of translucent, warm white crystal.  There is soft light suffusing everything.  In the middle of the room is a small bathing pool carved out of the same stone and decorated on its edges with carvings of vines and flowers.  On the wall on one side of the pool is a list of available values and spiritual practices you may select.  You reach for the list and touch the word “gratitude” and instantly the pool is full of pale lavender colored light which is transparent and sparkling with flashes of white and silver.  You place your finger in the pool. You are faintly aware of feelings of calm, peace, gentleness and fullness.  The pool is entirely safe and totally inviting.  Your urge is to immerse yourself completely in this energy of gratitude.  You are alone, you are safe. 

Quickly you slip into the pool.  As your body touches the light in the pool, the light melts into you.  You absorb it.  The light is pure spiritual energy filtering into the spaces between the electrons in your body.  You feel thankful and generously blessed.   Your sense of self becomes positive and you grasp that Spirit regards you as worthy of her love and her nurture.  You are treasured, cherished and adored.  Now soak and 

  • Feel grateful that Spirit has faith in you to progress in nobility of character and how she loves you.  
  • Feel thankful for the many unearned gifts you have been immersed in.  
  • Feel generously blessed.  
  • Feel cherished, treasured and adored.  
  • Soak in the love, blessing and generosity of spirit.  

[Pause 15 sec]

The ennobling energy of gratitude is yours to use forever.  It will lead you to be more gracious, generous and forgiving.  This power, along with life and all that life involves for eternity, are Spirt’s gifts to you.  Enjoy and use the spirit energy that continues to resonate clearly in your soul.  Live fully in spirit.  Soak eternally in the living, changing, growing power of gratitude.

Bill’s Book of Values at BillsBooks”N”Beyond.com provides lists of higher values you might soak in.  Meantime here is a short list of values to soak in.  Enjoy!

Generosity, Love, Service, Forgiveness, Tolerance, Patience, Loyalty, Courage, Trustworthiness, Mercy, Honesty


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Religion of Jesus Intro

Bill Cooper

We are here to spend five days exploring the religion of Jesus and how he lived it. What I hope to achieve in this session is an understanding of what religion is and why we should want to live a religious life. I also want to start our examination of the religious life of Jesus.

This week we will spend a lot of time in communion with God, asking for God’s input, asking for insights into the matters we are examining and feeling our admiration and love for God. Let’s start with a prayer:

Father, Mother, Brother, we ask you to be especially close to us and open with us as we sincerely and earnestly explore the religious life of Jesus. We thank you and the many, many spiritual sisters and brothers who gave us the gift of information about the life of Jesus. Help us to make effective use of it. Help us to be receptive to our Spirit of God within us and to Jesus within us. Give us the joy and the delight of the experience of your presence. Because you are so gracious, generous, supporting, merciful, just and kind, it is so appropriate to say to you: “In this as in all other things, it is our will that your will be done.”

We are told that of all human knowledge, what humanity most needs to know is the religious life of Jesus and how he lived it. Why do you suppose that is? Why is the religious life of Jesus the most important of all human knowledge? Is it because life is supposed to be first and foremost a religious journey? Is it because the religious life of Jesus is the demonstration of how our lives are supposed to be lived?

Jesus’ life was the greatest example of religious living that has occurred in this universe in a mortal lifetime. It exemplifies the maximum achievement. Humanity has very little knowledge of the religion of Jesus. And when they learn about it, most will find it to require radical changes in their values and priorities. Some, perhaps many, will conclude that it is best to keep some distance between them and the religion Jesus practiced because his religion is “dangerous.” It is guaranteed to change its sincere practitioners and it doesn’t emphasize material success, intelligence, possessions, self-indulgence, wealth, power or status. It is totally out of step with the pursuit of happiness as many 21st century Americans know it.

So why should we want to know how to live the religion of Jesus? Are we ready to have our lives radically redirected toward worshiping God and loving and serving all humanity and away from anything that interferes? Because that’s where the religion of Jesus is taking us, inevitably. It takes faith and trust in our spiritual parents to be able to say, “yes, this is the true way, and it is what I want.”

Religion is not a specific function of life. It is not a ceremony or a Sabbath service. It is not a

secret inner compartment of your life that is opened only for special occasions. Rather, religion is a mode of living.

Religion is a wholehearted devotion to some reality which the religionist deems to be of supreme value to himself and for all mankind. The outstanding characteristic of all religions is: unquestioning loyalty and wholehearted devotion to supreme values. The accepted supreme value of the religionist may be base or even false, but it is still religious. Many people assign supreme value to securing and enjoying power and wealth. These both fall in the category of false religions. A religion is genuine only to the extent that it is devoted to a value of genuine spiritual worth.

Now listen to the extraordinary things I am about to say. This is not Bill making this up. It comes from THE URANTIA BOOK, which I trust. In the religion of Jesus, the sincere religionist is conscious of universe citizenship and is aware of making contact with sources of superhuman power. Why is she aware? Because the spirit communicates, and we are able to perceive this communication.

She may not know it is her Thought Adjuster or the Spirit of Truth, but she knows it is superhuman. She is thrilled and energized with the assurance of belonging to an ennobled fellowship of the children of God. She has surrendered to the intriguing drive of an all-encompassing motivation to find and do the will of God. This motivation chooses heightened self-discipline. It lessens emotional conflict. It makes mortal life truly worth living. And this intense striving for the attainment of super mortal ideals is always characterized by increasing patience, forbearance, fortitude, and tolerance. While these are characteristics of true religion, they do not arise in false religions such as prosperity, power, celebrity, or popularity. False religion is destined to be unsatisfying, even destructive.

True religion seeks God’s help to lead a life of love for all persons and all things, manifesting in a life of service. Genuine religion adds new meanings to all of life. It generates new types of enthusiasm, zeal and courage. One of the most amazing marks of religious living is that dynamic and sublime peace, that cosmic poise which indicates the absence of doubt and turmoil. Real religion, true religion, genuine religion is the religion of Jesus.

Look at the benefits of real religion I have just covered.

  • Consciousness that your actions have far ranging repercussions in the universe.
  • Awareness of contact with superhuman power.
  • Motivation and energy from assurance of sonship.
  • Heightened self-discipline.
  • Lessened emotional conflict.
  • A satisfying life truly worth living.
  • Patience.
  • Forbearance.
  • Fortitude.
  • Tolerance.
  • New meanings in all of life.
  • New types of enthusiasm.
  • Zeal.
  • Poise.
  • Confidence.
  • Courage.
  • Sublime peace.
  • Absence of doubt.
  • Absence of turmoil.

These benefits of true religion sound immensely practical to me. In the contemporary life I live, I need a full measure of all of these. So ultimately, why pursue the religion of Jesus? Because true religion is what life is supposed to be about and Jesus demonstrated the truest of all religions. The one with the highest and best supreme values.

Let’s take a look at something Jesus taught his apostles about true religion. He identified three types of religion:

  1. Primitive Religion: This arises from the instinctive urge to fear mysterious energies and worship superior forces (lightening, thunder, streams, waves, rain, wind, volcanoes, seasons, new plant growth.) A religion of awe and respect based on fear.
  2. Religion of Civilization: This is religion of the mind. The intellectual theology of the authority of established religious tradition. This one tells you how and why and what to believe.
  3. True Religion: This is the religion of revelation, inner revelation, personal revelation. The revelation of supernatural values, a partial insight into eternal realities, a glimpse of the goodness and beauty of the infinite character of the Father in Heaven – the religion of the spirit as demonstrated in human experience of spiritual truths. All of which relate to the power of love to unify everything into one immense undertaking.

Jesus made it clear that the great difference between the religion of the mind and the religion of the spirit is this: religion of the mind is upheld by ecclesiastical authority; religion of the spirit is wholly based on human experience of true values.

Until humanity more generally recognizes the realities of spiritual experience, large numbers of people will continue to be content with religions of authority which require only intellectual assent, in contrast to the religion of the spirit which entails active participation of mind and soul in the great faith adventure of wrestling with the realities of human experience and discovering the way things really work by personal experience.

The religion of the spirit means effort, struggle, conflict, faith, determination, loyalty and progress. The religion of the mind requires little or none of these exertions from its formal believers.

All three kinds of religion – religion of fear, religion of the mind and religion of the spirit – coexist in our world at this time. And pieces of each of these expressions can occupy the same person. Jesus’ religion is religion of the spirit exclusively. He described it to his apostles as not being a religion in the sense that term was used in his time. That is probably still true. Jesus’ religion is the religion of following the guidance of the divine spirit of God which resides in the mind of each human being. His religion derives its authority, its proof, from the fruits of the spirit which show in the lives of its followers. He called his religion a higher spiritual communion.

To Jesus, religion was what life was about. Religion is not a segregated, sometimes activity, but an every-moment, purpose-of-living focus. Why?  Was it because he was a son of God and trying to turn people away from worldliness and toward the afterlife? I don’t think so. I think he was demonstrating the most successful way of living a human life both for the present life and for the afterlife. To him, what we call the afterlife is fully a part of the present life. So, our afterlife begins now, not just after we abandon our bodies.

There is nothing so holy about religious living. It is simply the way you involve spiritual resources in your struggle with life if your objective is to grow into the spiritual and eternal being you were born to be.


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By William Cooper 5-10-2019

The Infinite Spirit (the third person of the Trinity) creates and maintains the physical cosmos and all its creatures. And it is the Infinite Spirit who portrays the aspects of God that I identify as God the Mother.

This feminine expression of God is special to women. The traditional image of God as masculine has resulted in many women feeling left out or devalued. I can recognize and respect that. Of course, God must be both masculine and feminine. That pattern is used all over the universe. So, women are overjoyed to discover that one of the expressions of God in the trinity is overwhelmingly like a mother. This validates a lot of the things that make women somewhat different from men. So, the motherly nature of God is very attractive to women.

What about men? What do they derive from special attention to the motherly qualities of God? They gain respect for the co-equality of the feminine expressed in God and in female humans. Ponder this respect for the feminine. It alters men’s attitudes a lot. Recognizing and valuing God as mother also gives men the reassurance that we are all looked after with the love and attention of an adoring mother. She blesses us continuously and is constantly with us and is already known by us. She is the generosity of God. She is the spiritual assistance we sometimes seek. She is God up close. She loves us even if we are undeserving. Mothers just love that way.

We are encouraged to worship the Father, pray to the Son for spiritual progress, and work out the details of our daily life with the descendants of the Infinite Spirit. Consciously working out the details of daily life with the descendants of the Infinite Spirit is a new arena of spiritual life opening up on our planet. It leads to living our religion of following the leading of the spirit. Working out the details of daily life with descendants of the Infinite Spirit will proceed more smoothly if we love and know them and cooperate with them.

It is a great comfort and joy to know God as our adoring Mother as well as our loving, understanding and forgiving Father. Why relate to God as Mother? Because it brings me closer to God and causes me to want to cooperate with this loving, gentle and trustworthy being.


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By Kaye Cooper
Arlington, Texas

This article is based on material in THE URANTIA BOOK, on a survey of individual religionists, including both readers of THE URANTIA BOOK and non-readers, conducted in 1980, and on conversations with other individuals since that time. All page and paragraph citations are references to THE URANTIA BOOK. Page and paragraph references are according to the original Book format. Each citation is also referenced by paper, section, and  paragraph to accommodate translations and formats which do not follow the original Book format. Thank you to all those who so generously shared their experiences.

If we are to do the Father’s will, then presumably there is some way for us to ascertain what that will is. We can apply logic; we can look to the example of good lives; we can consult the opinions of other people personally or through their writings; we can consult epochal revelations, and more. All these methods are helpful. However, we have available to us personal sources of our Father’s guidance.

THE URANTIA BOOK tells us that personal revelation is continuous (P 1107:2 / UB 101:2.12) Jesus; speaking of the Spirit of Truth, promised that, “Every earth child who follows the leading of this spirit shall eventually know the will of God.” The way by which we will know his will is faith. Jesus told his apostles and twelve of the evangelists, “Your religion shall change from the mere intellectual belief in traditional authority to the actual experience of that living faith which is able to grasp the reality of God and all that relates to the divine spirit of the Father …. the religion of the spirit consists in progressive revelation … ” (P 1731:2 / UB 155:6.3)


We have three primary sources of spiritual guidance: (1) the Thought Adjuster, (2) the Spirit of Truth, and (3) the Universe Mother Spirit (P 381:3 & P 1681:2 / UB 34:6.9 & UB 150:3.7 )

The Thought Adjuster comes to us with a specific plan for intellectual and spiritual development. (P 1204:5 / UB 110:2.1) He is primarily concerned with preparing us for the future life beyond this one. (P 1192:1 & P 1204:2 / UB 108:5.6 & UB 110:1.4) Most of his work is done on the superconscious level. (P 1204:3 / UB 110:5) We are unable to receive direct communication with our Thought Adjuster (with rare exceptions) until we have attained the second or first psychic circle of self-mastery. (P 1210:10 / UB 110:6.15)

The Spirit of Truth is more concerned with now. He is the teacher of truth and the comforter. (P 1948:3 / UB 180:4.3) He is our personal tutor on accurate understanding of the message of Jesus. (P 2060:6 / UB 194:2.1) The influence of the Spirit of Truth is perceptible. On the day of Pentecost the apostles and other believers felt the arrival of the Spirit of Truth. They were filled with a “new and profound sense of spiritual joy, security, and confidence immediately followed by a strong urge to go out and publicly proclaim the gospel…” (P 2059:1 / UB 194:0.1)

The Mother-Spirit makes it possible for the Thought Adjuster and Spirit of Truth to function and she works with them. (P 379:4 / UB 34:5.4&5) She also gives us the services of at least three orders of her children: the adjutant mind spirits, the guardian seraphim and the master seraphim of planetary supervision. Through the ministry of the Mother Spirit and her children, we receive the urge to worship (P 1245:4 / UB 113:4.4), the urge to pray (P 1245:4 / UB 113:4.4), the development of evolutionary religion (P 1003:5 & P 1110:13 / UB 92:0.5 & UB 101:5.10), the circumstancing of our lives toward growth (P 1245:3 / UB 113:4.3) and the fostering of the growth and development of our civilization. (P 1255:6 / UB 114:6.7) The Book is talking primarily about the Mother Spirit and her children when it makes the statement, “…work out the details of your earthly sojourn in connection with the intelligences of the infinite spirit…” (P 66:1 / UB 5:.3.5)

Perhaps at this point it would be helpful to describe a variety of types of guidance. We know that a great deal of the leading we receive, especially from the Thought Adjuster, is not on a conscious level. (P 1207:2 / UB 110:4.1). The following types of guidance are ones of which we may to some degree be conscious.


Reading THE URANTIA BOOK was probably the first time most of us had given serious thought to angels and certainly the first time we had read a description in detail of their teaching efforts on our behalf. Yet many of us had already felt their influence in our lives without having a unifying concept by which we could understand and discuss what was happening. Life is full of seeming coincidences which teach us lessons – lessons small and large, many times the same lessons over and over again. Many lives have taken significant turns because of physical or social circumstances which redirect the person’s thinking. These experiences are very probably a result of seraphic work.

Once they have read about the work of seraphim in THE URANTIA BOOK, many people take great delight in actively watching for the circumstances of life which might lead to growth. Events which might have been considered disasters, or at least misfortunes, become opportunities to grow. Many seek celestial assistance and open themselves to a better knowledge of the Father’s will by such active observation. Having prayed about a particular difficulty, one individual may find a relevant comment in a book he happens to read. A friend may call and, without knowing the problem, say the very thing which unlocks the puzzle. A newspaper headline, a piece of artwork, a song on the radio – the variety of sources is enormous so long as a person is open to the possibility. Being alert to the possible influence of the seraphim in our lives has brought much growth, joy and satisfaction to many lives.


A much more controversial method by which some people feel that they receive guidance is that of hearing voices and seeing visions. First let us deal with voices which are perceived by the physical ear and visions which are seen with the physical eye. Evidently, from THE URANTIA BOOK reports of Gabriel appearing to Mary and John’s mother, Elizabeth, and of midwayers letting Peter out of prison, these types of events are possible. They appear, however, to be very rare.

Experiences of voices heard by the mind’s ear and visions seen by the mind’s eye are not so rare. Internal visualizations have been relatively common. Visualizations are frequently symbolic of concepts and events. Sometimes these have been in answer to prayer, sometimes apparently unsolicited. Such visions have occurred in the midst of crises, during rest, at prayer or worship, etc. Sometimes, as one might expect, these visual experiences are combined with the voice or other sound experience. 

Many people have brief voice experiences throughout their lives which help them through difficult situations with succinct advice or words of support and encouragement. Perhaps this voice is simply higher levels of our unconscious or our humanly acquired conscience. It may be the Spirit of Truth (P 1286:7 / UB 117:5.9) or possibly on rare occasions even our Thought Adjuster. (P 1192:4 / UB 108:5.9) 

Quite a few individuals have described hearing with their mind’s ear words, sentences, paragraphs, even entire compositions which form in their minds in ways which feel different from their ordinary thought processes. In most cases reported, the material received in this way was gentle, inspiring, and uplifting, often including humor appropriate to the receiving person. In some instances where advice was sought from the voices, answers seemed to have been carefully given so as to avoid imposing on the will of the receiving person – in fact, they are sometimes said to be downright frustratingly unhelpful. A number of persons experiencing this type of voices indicate that the voices claim to be angels, many of whom give their names. 

The claim to be conversing with angels is probably the most controversial aspect of these experiences, especially since THE URANTIA BOOK says that seraphim making actual contact with humans is “very unusual.” (P 1246:4 / UB 113:5.5) Perhaps these voices are the “sudden emergence into consciousness of ideas which have been grouping themselves together in the submerged mental levels … ” (P 1207:3 / UB 110:4.3) Perhaps they are exactly what they purport to be. Any individual having such an experience will find assistance in the Book (especially P 1244-6 & P 1254-8 / UB 113:3-5 & UB 114:5-7) but no concrete answers. The results of voice and visual experiences frequently have been enhanced, fruitful and happy lives.


This next category of guidance is a difficult one to even put a name to. We tend to say, “I feel that I should” do this or that. Almost everyone responding to our survey referred to intuitions or feelings. Yet these feelings have little to do with emotions and still less to do with our physical senses. Perhaps they are the influence of the soul in its functioning to feel values. (P 1219:5 / UB 111:3.6) In some cases they may be simple conscience or the product of our “sub-merged mental levels.” (P 1207:7 / UB 110:4.3) Perhaps they are what is termed “spiritual insight,” the “inner and spiritual communion” which results “from the impress made upon the mind of man by the combined operations of the Adjuster and the Spirit of Truth … (P 1105:0 / UB 101:1.3)Perhaps they are not really feelings but the parent of thoughts – a thought emerging so slowly that we perceive it before its clear emergence into consciousness. Probably each of these (and other things too) is experienced as a “feeling” or “knowing” at one time or another. 

Whatever the origin, people experience feelings about the truth of a situation or the rightness of their own actions. In fact, these feelings are probably the ultimate arbiter of their guidance. Frequently their first reaction to a new idea is, “How does it feel?” And after having prayed, counseled with friends, consulted THE URANTIA BOOK (or their memory of it), using their humanly acquired facts and logic, applying their common sense, and whatever else they may do, the final thought is often, “Now, how do I feel about it?” Those who receive guidance in some other fashion, such as circumstances, voices, or visions, tend to accept or reject that guidance based on these feelings.

Many individuals find that they are not at peace with themselves when their thoughts, words, or actions are not in keeping with this inner feeling. Sometimes they spend days feeling uncomfortable about their lives until they recognize that they must do some praying and serious thinking about some aspect of their lives. Once their thoughts, words and actions are harmonious with this knowing inside them, they are at peace once again. Sometimes the conflict is caused by their bowing to the influence or persuasion of someone else and they behave in a way not consistent with their inner selves. Sometimes they may have made selfish decisions which this true self recognizes and rejects. Whatever the cause, peace is restored when they respond to the truth within themselves.


Some people report an experience which they consider to be guidance, but which varies quite a bit from the other forms described. It occurs when the individuals are actively engaged in serving their fellows (consciously or unconsciously). In such a circumstance the serving individual involved silently expresses desire for God’s help in the situation. Then frequently he seems to say just the right thing to the person with whom he is talking, with the result that the other person’s spiritual needs are met. The serving individuals are unconscious of specific leading. They report simply feeling in partnership with spirit or feeling that God’s love is flowing through them. 

These occurrences seem to take place when the serving individuals are relating to others in a non-directing, loving way. There is no attempt to tell the person what he ought to do. The servers are not concerned with their own cleverness or goodness but are concentrating on a simple, loving communion with the other person. It is possible that this is what Jesus described as making “your appeals directly to the divine spirit that dwells within the minds of men.” (P 1765:4 / UB 159:3.3) 

Such experiences may be the influence of the Spirit of Truth since we are told that he “directs the loving contact of one human being with another.” (P 1951:0 / UB 180:5.11) These occurrences of partnership with spirit are certainly high points of fulfillment and satisfaction in the life of the server.


A major concern which some people have about spiritual guidance is, “How does one judge its validity?”, Our minds are quite capable of fooling us, and we are warned that genuine guidance may be distorted and even result in fanaticism. (P 1208:4-5 & P 1209:4 / UB 110:5.5&6 & UB 110:6.4) 

Validation of experience may be attempted by going to accepted religious authority for approval. But Jesus gave us his method, a better method of religious validation. 

The Book describes Jesus’ approach to religion as if It were analogous to the technique of experiment used in modern science (Develop a theory, experiment, observe results and test replicability). Jesus followed the method of experience. (P 2076:5 / UB 195:5.14) We may perceive an insight or intuition or in some other way we believe that we have received guidance. But we’ll not know whether what we perceive is truth unless we act upon it – unless we try it in our lives and look at the results. Those results tell us if we have something worthwhile or not. This is one way in which we can use the method of experience. It is also the method of faith in that we act upon our trust that we are guided. 

Our faith is small at first, but it draws strength from the experience which we have as a result of acting upon our guidance. Each time we act and observe the results, our faith grows until it approaches that mature faith which is defined as religious assurance. 

Jesus urges his followers to become their own prophets (P 1731:5 / UB 154:6.7); to depend not on someone else’s words but upon their own religious experience. He said: “The religion of the spirit leaves you forever free to follow the truth wherever the leadings of the spirit may take you. And who can judge, perhaps this spirit may have something to impart to this generation which other generations have refused to hear?” (P 1731:3/ UB 154:6.5) He wasn’t talking just to the apostles and evangelists, but to each person who hears his words and follows them in any generation. 

Ultimately then, the validity of our guidance depends upon our trying it in our lives. There are many ways in which THE URANTIA BOOK can assist in this process. It can provide some criteria by which to judge the consequences of acting on our guidance.

As one example, the, Book provides a test of the validity of mystical experiences. (P 1000-1 / UB 91:7.5-12) The test can be applied to any experience in one’s life. Experience is worthwhile if it improves life on seven levels.

  1. Does it improve one’s physical health? 
  2. Does it improve one’s mental functioning? 
  3. Does it socialize one’s religious life? 
  4. Does it spiritualize one’s every-day life? 
  5. Does it enhance one’s appreciation for truth, beauty and goodness? 
  6. Does it conserve one’s current level of values? 
  7. Does it increase one’s God consciousness? 

This test provides a practical means of judging any guidance experience which we have had. 

The primary validity concern is that we do not exalt our own ideas to the level of the words of God. (P 1094:3 & 1208:4 / UB 100:1.1 & UB 110:5.5) We are cautioned many times in THE URANTIA BOOK of the dangers of assuming that our intuitions, urges or feelings originate with the Thought Adjuster. (P 1199:4, P 1207:2-4, P 1208:4-5 & P 1213:1&4 / UB 109:5.3, UB 110:4.2-4, UB 110:5.5-6 & UB 110:7.6&9) We can avoid that problem by taking all of our guidance, in whatever form it might appear, and labeling it “source unknown” and “quality unknown.” If it passes our tests of logical evaluation and intuitive truth response, then we can test it in our lives to determine its quality. If the quality is good, the source hardly matters.

So, what about the situation in which our guidance does not seem to satisfy the tests we apply? We will have those situations, especially at first when we are just starting out. At times, our subconscious fears may appear to be guidance. Personally, I toss out any intuitions that have the fear emotion associated with them. Time after time these have proved to be inaccurate. Evidently, they arise out of my subconscious fears. Certainly, we may misinterpret our guidance. It is important to remember that we will always be subject to errors of reception or interpretation, just as a baby at first struggles to understand its parent. Like the baby, we will improve in our ability to discern and interpret the wisdom given us. Yet even as we mature, the possibility of error is always with us. While Jesus admonished the apostles and evangelists not to discount truth “because the channel of its bestowal is apparently human” (P 1733:0 / UB 155:6.12), he also made it clear to Nathaniel that divine truth from human sources is always subject to error. (P 1768:4 / UB 159:4.8) 

My own approach varies from situation to situation, but at one time or another I use some or all of the following: When I recognize something which I think may be guidance, I first “feel” for an inner sense about its truth. Then I check it out against such logical criteria as its own internal logic and its consistency with God’s nature and qualities, my highest values, and my knowledge of universe law. I pray for wisdom and clarity of perception, sometimes over a length of time. If I continue to feel right about it, I take a faith leap and act upon that guidance. Then I observe the results on myself, on the people around me, and on the situation. I apply what I call Jesus’ test: “Does it bring God to man? Does it bring man to God?” (P 1388:5 / UB 126:2.5) I always try to keep in mind that any guidance is filtered through my mind and is therefore subject to imperfections. In the long run I look at those seven levels of my life to see if things are progressing satisfactorily. And finally, there are times when I have to take on faith that I have chosen God’s will because I have done so to the best of my ability. If I have done that, what more can I do unless I receive further illumination?


Now I would like to share with you the techniques which I have gleaned from THE URANTIA BOOK and from the responses we received from our survey. 

With regard to the external circumstances of guidance reception, the Book states and our survey certainly supports that there are no limitations. (P 2064:2 / UB 194:3.10) Guidance may be received any place, at any time. 

The techniques which facilitate guidance can be stated with this brief formula. 

(1) Pray and worship (both talk to God and listen). 

(2) Actively grapple with life (make decisions and serve your fellows). 

(3) Want (need, yearn) to do the Father’s will more than anything else in the world. 

Prayer and worship are essential elements, in spiritual guidance. Prayer enlarges our spiritual receptivity (P 2065:8 / UB 194:3.20) and worship is the best time for the Thought Adjuster to communicate with our souls. (P 1641:1 / UB 146:2.17)

There are seven attitudes which we should carry to prayer. 

(1) Prayer ”should be done as unselfishly as we are able. (P 999:9 / UB 91:6.6) 

(2) We should maintain a joyful feeling of thanksgiving. (P 1640:4 / UB 146:2.15) We can even be thankful for the hard places in life if we recognize that they are opportunities to grow and learn. 

(3) We must pray in faith (P 1620:7 / UB 144:3.14), believing that our prayers will be answered. That does not mean believing in the childish manner that we will receive exactly what we ask for but knowing that the father will supply what we need for the situation. 

(4) Prayer goes nowhere if we are not sincere in it. God answers the soul’s attitude (P 1002:4 / UB 91:8.12), so if the words don’t match the attitude, the words simply aren’t heard. 

(5) We are advised to pray intelligently, according to our light. (P 1620:9 / UB 144:3.16) We shouldn’t ask for that which we know the Father won’t give, such as preferential treatment or requests which violate God’s laws as we understand them. (P 1638:3 / UB 146:2.3)

(6) We should be trustful. (P 1620:19 / UB 144:3.17) Once we recognize that the Father’s will would be the best possible outcome of our prayer, we can actively and sincerely seek that. We can say, in effect “this is what I have figured out for this situation. It’s the best I can come up with, but what I’d really like is for your will to emerge.” Then we let the situation go, release our willful hold on it and become receptive to God’s will.

(7) The last step is to go a bit further and open ourselves to change. That’s what prayer is really about anyway – to change ourselves. (P 1639:3 / UB 146:2.8) We can magnify the effects if we take the attitude, “Here am I; use me; reconstruct me.”

THE URANTIA BOOK gives us some indications of what to pray for. The number one prayer in importance is the prayer for the knowledge of the Fathers will. (P 1640:3 / UB 146:2.14) Number two is the prayer for guidance over the pathway of earthly life. (P 1640:3 / UB 146:2.14) A corollary to this second one is not to ask God to solve problems, but to ask for wisdom and spiritual strength while we get busy working on our problems in partnership with spirit. (P 999:8 / UB 91:6.5) We are advised to pray for others: for the welfare of our families and friends, for the extension of the kingdom of heaven, and most difficult, to pray for those who ill-use us. (P 1639:6 & P 1640:2 / UB 146:2.11 & UB 146:2.13) 

As to the methods we use in prayer, Jesus advised that one’s real petitions be made in private (P 1640:1 / UB 146:2.12) but also warned against becoming too isolated. He made it a practice to take three apostles to be near him while he prayed (P 2055:2 / UB 193:3.2) and at times sent all the apostles away to pray in pairs. (P 1544:1 / UB 138:7.2) 

Rodan stated that relaxation enhances our spiritual receptivity. (P 1777:2 / UB 160:3.1) One of our respondents expanded on this concept. He said: “It appears certain to me that guidance cannot be effective when the seeker is under intense pressure and cannot pay attention to the receipt of subtle and often instantaneous images in the preverbal layers of mind.” However, if circumstances do not permit relaxation, seek spiritual counsel anyway. 

Dialogue is recommended in THE URANTIA BOOK as the best prayer technique for us to follow. (P 997:5 / UB 91:3.7) Several of our respondents mentioned a dialogue. One commented, “Sometimes I just ‘talk it over’ with Jesus or my Thought Adjuster. Sometimes I write it down in dialogue form … ” Another person described his technique this way: “Sometimes while sitting on a bus or driving in my car I talk (in my head) to God as if he were sitting in the car with me. I discuss my concerns, ideas, etc. If I ask a question, I try to listen for an answer however it might come. After a moment or more of listening, I return to sharing my experience of the moment with God.” 

The technique which enables prayer to enlarge our channels of spiritual receptivity is persistency. Repeating a prayer-even a spiritually unsound prayer, if it is prayed earnestly and longingly and is a sincere expression uttered in faith, will expand the soul’s capacity for spiritual receptivity. (P 1621:1 / UB 144:4.2) When I first read several years ago that I should be persistent in my prayer, it didn’t make much sense to me. Surely God didn’t need me to repeat things. It took a while to dawn on me that God didn’t need them repeated, I did. Furthermore, repeating them in a meaningless fashion wouldn’t have the desired effect. It is the soul’s attitude which one is practicing. Of course, I benefit from praying earnestly and longingly in faith and sincerity. This keeps reminding me that I am cooperating with spirit in finding the answer to my prayer. 

To me one of the most fascinating bits of information in the Book has always been that the Thought Adjuster is able to teach the human mind when it “flows freely in the liberated but controlled channels of creative imagination.” (P 1199:2 / UB 109:5.1) I conjecture that several different activities would come under this heading: delightful sessions of speculation and brainstorming in worshipful problem-solving. 

One of the aspects of prayer which is easy to overlook is the listening part. It’s hard to communicate with someone who is always chattering. I suspect our spiritual guides feel that way about us. Jesus taught his followers to “remain for a time in silent receptivity to afford the indwelling spirit the better opportunity to speak to the listening soul. The spirit of the Father speaks best to man when the human mind is in an attitude of true worship.” (P 1641:1 / UB 146:2.17) One of our respondents gave a very simple formula for prayer: “Be still, listen, ask, listen.” 

There are two places in the book which I wish to recommend to you for prayerful study, because they have so much to teach about prayer. The laws of prevailing petitions on page 1002 (P 1002 / UB 91:9) gives a step-by-step method of achieving an effective prayer life. On page 2089 (P 2089/ UB 196:0.10-13) can be found the beautiful and powerful description of what prayer was to Jesus. As I studied it again and again over time, this paragraph made me recognize that I had placed entirely too many limitations on what prayer is. 

The door was opened to a whole new realm of ways to relate to deity through prayer. 

The second category of helpful techniques is “Action: decision-making and service.” Two of our respondents expressed an urge to action so beautifully. One described it this way: “Our Adjuster, together with any other spiritual influences on us, must have something to work with… we must be spiritually active, sincerely making decisions, being of service – doing what we believe is right in every situation that arises… I believe that the ‘spiritual guidance’ that is most productive comes when I am actively trying to do what I believe is something of worth, when I give my adjuster something to adjust”. Another commented: “Cause your mind to want to be receptive to spiritual guidance all of the time… Pray for guidance, try to determine what you should do, assume that you have been given such guidance (whether you are certain of this or not) then embark. Step forward and act. Don’t be so self-critical if you don’t like the results. Try to learn from the experience.”

One of our respondents noticed in her life that no further guidance on a topic seemed forthcoming until some action had been taken on the guidance already given. 

The action on which Jesus placed so much stress was service. One respondent expressed the connection between service and communion this way: “I utterly desire continuous communion, but I think that I grow toward that by losing myself in service, finding the traces of God in the real around me, and letting the sense of the Father’s presence grow as I continue to seek and find and choose and do his will.”

Our spiritual association with others provides mutual stimulation to growth. (P 1094:2 / UB 100:0.2) One person commented: “The biggest contributors for me in growing to the point of perceiving guidance have been the many wonderful friends I’ve known who read the Book and are living proof that it works.”

We are told we don’t discipline our minds enough. (P 1213:1/ UB 110:7.6) One aspect of discipline is that of allowing enough time to make decisions. It requires both patience and stamina to continue to grapple with a problem for any great length of time. Nevertheless, time is frequently necessary to allow us to receive whatever guidance might be forthcoming. One person commented, “… if instead of rushing in impulsively into a situation, deciding on the spur of the moment, I wait a while; then, most of the time, after asking for guidance, I will be given a new insight into the situation, a higher view of it, a greater perspective … ” 

An important pattern is brought out in the Book: it is necessary to make many small decisions to firmly establish a habit. One builds up to the critical decisions with this method. (P 1708:1&2 / UB 153:1.2&3) One respondent applies the principle in this way: “I find that with practice, guidance becomes much easier to recognize. So, I ask for guidance all the time, not just for large decisions… I develop the habit of using guidance all the time with a Unity concept: ‘Every thought is a prayer.’ It really made me stop and consider and eliminate the garbage.” 

We can help ourselves to maintain a constantly receptive attitude by a vigilant questioning of the environment. One respondent reported his questions: “Can I learn something important here? Is there something I can do for someone here? Has this occurred before? Maybe it’s a lesson I didn’t learn the first time.” We can also work in partnership with spirit by seeking help at the moment we need it. Even in the midst of a conversation we can express a quick, silent prayer and then relax, knowing that the spirit will work in partnership with us. 

The communion of prayer and worship and the action of decision-making and service are both conducive to the reception of spiritual guidance, but we must maintain an appropriate balance between the two. Jesus’ plan was to provide short retreats from life for his apostles but mainly to keep them in active service. (P 1000:3 / UB 91:7.2) 

The final consideration in receiving spiritual guidance is the most important: a desire to do the will of God. Choosing to do the Father’s will is a little like being a traveler who enters what he thought was uncharted wilderness only to discover that an explorer has gone before. Not only that, but the explorer has blazed the best possible trail through the wilderness. The traveler has a choice: he can determine to express his uniqueness and originality and strike out to blaze some lesser trail, or he can gratefully accept the excellent path left by the explorer and eventually arrive safe and triumphant on the far side of the wilderness. 

The best way I know of to overcome our desire to express our own wills is by becoming so close to the Father’s infinite goodness that we are overcome with the desire to become that beautiful. All other motives pale before our yearning to be and do anything the Father asks. Our reward is a greater and greater capacity to enjoy the pleasure of his presence. 

I said earlier that there were three basic techniques which facilitate the reception of guidance:

(1) Pray and worship.

(2) Make decisions and serve.

(3) Want to do the Father’s will.  

In the final analysis the first and second are meaningless without the third. In the list on page 1206 (P 1206 / UB 110:3.7-10) of four things by which we can consciously enhance Adjuster harmony, three of the four are simply various aspects of wanting to do the Father’s will. 

Certainly, seeking to do the Father’s will is the core of our religious experience. A steadfast desire to do his will becomes an active and all-pervasive motivator in our lives, the drive around which all other considerations center. Such a whole-hearted dedication to the beauty and excellence of the Father’s way will surely facilitate our growing perception of his will for our lives. 


While we must exercise caution and wisdom to avoid the dangers of elevating our own ideas to the level of commands from on high, we should also be sure not to miss the real experience of a living religion. It is our opportunity to move beyond belief in God’s watch care and guidance to true faith to actively seek his will and do what we understand that will to be. And in those moments of success, we will indeed be sharing our lives with God.


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Seeing With God’s Eyes

By Kaye cooper

Let me share with you a moment of transformation from the life of Jesus. Imagine for just a minute the scene at the ship dock where Jesus waits to board a ship with Ganid and Gonod. They witness a man angrily attacking his wife. Jesus steps forward and taps the man on the shoulder. Look into that man’s face as he wheels around. See the anger, the clinched teeth, the fiery eyes. And then see his surprise and confusion when Jesus courteously invites him aside. And if that was not startling enough, Jesus then does an even more amazing thing. He tells the man what a fine person he is. Listen to some of what he says: “I am sure you must feel you have some good reason for this assault. I think I discern in your face a love of justice. I venture to say that, if you found me attacked by robbers, you would unhesitatingly rush to my rescue. Now, my friend, tell me what is the matter?” 

Look into the face of Jesus; see his kind look and sympathetic smile. He really means what he is saying. Jesus is seeing the man with the eyes of God – not the way you and I would ordinarily see the man at all. This is not flattery. It is the way God sees the man. Imagine the look on the man’s face in this moment of transformation, because he suddenly believes Jesus. He believes he is a better man than his behavior would indicate. In that transforming moment, he becomes a better man. His family life is changed. His wife and children are deeply affected. Even Gonod is profoundly changed by some of Jesus’ words to the man a few minutes later. Truly this was a transforming moment! And it happened because Jesus was able to see the man with God’s eyes.

We too can see with God’s eyes and it is important to see with God’s eyes. You can tell what a dramatic difference seeing the man’s behavior and the good within him with god’s eyes made in the encounter Jesus had with this man. It turned an ugly, even dangerous situation into an open door. This was truly an amazing transformation.

Seeing with God’s Eyes is basically a prayer to see more nearly as God sees, to the extent that we are able. Obviously, we cannot see all that God sees. After all, God is the creator and upholder of the universe. But by asking for God’s assistance to see as God sees and by being open to guidance, we find that our perspective changes. We see more wisely, more unselfishly, and with better understanding of our fellows. We see their potential goodness instead of only their faults. We see people’s motives, their potential, their reality (instead of our fears and prejudices). We take on attitudes more like our Heavenly Parent’s, attitudes that are more loving, sincere, and giving. We become more willing to forgive. We see ourselves and others as beloved children who are still learning and growing.

When we ask to “See with God’s Eyes,” God seems to answer our prayer by uplifting our perspective and adjusting our attitudes. Seeing with God’s eyes is one of our goals as followers of the religion of Jesus.


Let’s try it now. Choose a situation or a person to see with God’s eyes. Choose a situation at work, home, church, or with friends which you need to see differently. Or choose a person in your life you need a fresh perspective on. He may have an annoying habit. She may be a problem in your work life. It may be someone you have fallen into the habit of criticizing.

You need to select a person or situation that you are prepared to see differently. We are not always willing to let go of our perspective, you know. In fact, that is the hardest part of this process. We want to continue our own viewpoint and attitudes. Often, we prefer to wallow in a little self-righteous pool of anger. We would rather be right than solve our problem.

Sometimes simply realizing that we have a choice about how we see, and feel can immediately free us to let go of our own perspective. There are other times when we just have to allow ourselves the time to grow into letting go. When the emotions are involved, we can’t necessarily force ourselves to let go. If we rely on persistent, ongoing, sincere prayer, then over time our Mother/Father God will soften the soil. So select something that you think you are ready and willing to let go of. 

Take a moment now and choose what you will focus on. (Pause) 

The steps in this process are simple:

  1. Commit to give up your viewpoint. 
  2. Ask for God’s help. 
  3. Imagine how God would see. Apply your understanding of God’s nature and values. 

Having decided that you are ready to let go of your viewpoint, your next step is to make a commitment to give up your viewpoint and see the person with God’s eyes. 

Once you have made the commitment to see differently, the asking is easy. You will simply ask God for help and trust fully that God will supply what you need. 

The final step is to imagine. This is where you encourage the process and become a partner with God: use your imagination. Ask God, “How would you see this?” Then imagine how God would see the situation or the person. You will find that as you use your imagination, God will help you to see more as God sees. You may want to repeat “How would you see this?” at intervals during the exercise. 

Let’s do step one together right now. Take a moment of silence to ask yourself: “Am I willing to see and feel more as God would?” Make a commitment to let go of your viewpoint and see with God’s eyes. 


I will give you about ten minutes to ask for God’s help and then to imagine how God sees the situation or person. During your quiet time, I encourage you to journal or take notes.  Sometimes ideas get away from you if you don’t jot them down. 

Afterward, you will have an opportunity to share whatever you want from this exercise. Of course, sharing is always voluntary. 

Please begin when you are ready.

(allow ten minutes) 

Time is almost up. Finish your thought. 



Did you notice any difficulty making the commitment to be willing to see things God’s way? 

What difference did you notice in the way you saw the person or situation? 

How do you feel differently about the person or situation now? 

Nail Down

Seeing with God’s eyes is one of those spiritual habits which is very beneficial to your spiritual growth. It is a way of inviting God to be an active partner in your life. It can be used as a prayer in the moment to transform a situation on the spot. It can be used in private to help you find a way to cope with your life. If a particular situation or person is a real challenge, persistence, sincerity, and determination will eventually bring success. 

Seeing with God’s eyes is our destiny. If you ask to see with God’s eyes persistently and honestly, over time you will find that you are not only seeing God’s will for you – more and more you will be doing God’s will for you. 


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A Unique Spiritual Service

by Bill Cooper
Arlington, Texas

Jason, Kaye and I are fortunate to share our home with a very graceful looking and behaving schnauzer-poodle. Her disposition is so uniformly loving and unselfish that I have frequently wondered whether she was circumstanced into my home by my slightly higher spiritual brothers and sisters so that I might observe these qualities in her and perhaps eventually find and adopt a human equivalent. Anyway, I am sure, they will be delighted for her to have that effect on me. 

Occasionally I have wondered whether I might not effect my greatest service to my mortal brothers and sisters by breeding schnauzer-poodles by the thousand and giving them to anyone who could appreciate and want them. Now that would be a unique spiritua1 service. Dog breeder for the Kingdom. 


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     By James Thompson

Once in a saintly passion 

I cried with desperate grief, 

“O Lord, my heart is black with guile, 

Of sinners I am chief.” 

Then stooped my guardian angel 

And whispered from behind, 

“Vanity, my little man, 

You’re nothing of the kind.” 


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By Kaye Cooper
Arlington, Texas

The really significant work of our lives on this world boils down to two sides of a single coin: coming to know God and striving to be like him. The seven psychic circles is a way of measuring our progress in the latter of those twin goals. The Circles magazine is dedicated to sharing our experiences, insights, speculations, et cetera, so that we can help each other in the work of making our circles – striving to be like God.

Preparation for the work of circle attainment begins early in life. The baby who struggles to guide his hand toward an object he wants is working to bring his body (the material) under control of his mind (the intellectual). The child continues to perfect that control of mind until, when he is approximately five years old, another element is added. The child decides on an action motivated by his spiritual faculties. In that moment, his spirit is controlling his mind and his spirit-led mind is controlling his body. He has stepped into the seventh circle. 

From that time on his real progress will be measured by his success in using that chain of command: spirit to mind to body. Said another way: he will be striving to unify his own spirit, mind, and body under the over-control of personality. How is that striving to be like God? Because God does precisely that—he unifies spirit; mind, and matter (Goodness, Truth, and Beauty). In fact, the experiential God, the Supreme, is even now striving to unify the spirit, mind, and matter of the grand universe. (See THE URANTIA BOOK, p. 1274.) 

The unification process within each person is inevitably expressed in that person’s relationship with the rest of the world. And that relationship reflects how balanced the person’s growth is. Balance is significant because circle progress is only achieved by balanced growth – proportional progress in the spiritual, intellectual, and material aspects of a person. (See p. 1209.)

We can hypothesize a person of balanced growth with some confidence because we have a superb example of such a person in Jesus. A hypothetical balanced personality would provide the material necessities of life for himself and his family without allowing material possessions to become the primary goal of his life. Nor would he neglect those necessities because he is too busy with intellectual or spiritual affairs. That personality would depend on his intellect to serve him well without tying intellectual knots around every idea, situation or person entering his life. He would not go to the other extreme in rejecting rational thought for exclusively “gut” reaction. This balanced person would have a personal one-to-one relationship with his Father. He would not be found hidden away engaged in nothing but communion with God, nor would he be a person who knows about prayer and worship but does not engage in them. 

Coming to know God on a personal basis is the core of our maturing process, but in order to become like him, we must go a step further. We must make our decisions based on the divine chain of command: spirit to mind to body. When we do, we will see ourselves emerging as beings of balanced growth. And while we may not know which circle we are in, we may be sure we are making progress. 


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By Bill Cooper Arlington, Texas

I rest,


Recalling blessings in abundance

Blessings of love; of friends; of beauty

recognized, remembered, invested

within my soul.

Angels are near.

I await my Father’s presence

which comes to me from the

mystery center of everywhere.

He is present!

Our loves overflow.

The thrill, the exhilaration of his

presence explodes around me in

meanings and insights.

Slowly, his presence recedes

but joy remains.

I cannot yet sustain long seasons

in his presence.

But that too shall come.


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The Father’s Business

By Matthew Rapaport
San Francisco

To my mind, “the Father’s Business” evokes images of two distinct kinds of ministry. The first kind is highly spiritual in orientation, outwardly as well as inwardly. The second is, outwardly, more concerned with the secular affairs of the world, though it too must be, inwardly, spiritual in orientation.

 God is spirit and His business, in the strictest sense, must also be spiritual. Here is the business of spiritual ministry which must, in the end, involve the sharing of the Gospel – Fatherhood, Brotherhood, and eternal life through faith whether or not this message is associated with The URANTIA Book, boot­legged material from the Book, or any other information about the spiritual universe and our relationship to it. This ministry may include more than the gospel.  

It may include elements of intellectual and material ministry to the needs of individuals, but it must, at least, encompass the Gospel.  The Father’s business in this sense is that of introducing people to God.  After they have been introduced, it is also appropriate to help them expand their relationship to Him.  Our Father may have many “businesses,” but this must be the first, last, and most important of them.

 Aside from purely spiritual ministry, most of us have multiple secular responsibilities.  We are parents, workers, students, and many other things.  Done from the proper motivation, these too are the Father’s business.  It is our challenge as His partners in creation to do that which contributes to the growth of the Supreme.  Our own souls grow in character, and the Supreme emerges in the super universe as we make holy our secular responsibilities through dedication to God’s will.

 Jesus lived this sense of his Father’s business right up to the time of his baptism.  He acted as dutiful son, student, father, employee, and volunteer.  The way in which he carried out these responsibilities is a perfect illustration of living the Father’s business in this sense, a sense in which most of us must live it through all of our lives.

 There are common elements to the Father’s business in whatever sense one considers it.  Love for and interest in one’s fellows is always a part of doing God’s will.  Becoming more socially useful to one’s fellows is the measure (outwardly) of personal spiritual progress, and of success in doing the Father’s business. 

There is, of course, nothing contradictory in combining the two senses of the Father’s business.  Jesus did this more and more as he grew up.  His transition from dutiful child to full-time spiritual minister was gradual. This would seem to be a natural transition.  It is made possible by the need for love and expressions of truth, beauty, and goodness, in any life shared with God. 

Yet while all work done in God’s glory is holy, it is only natural that eventually, we should be led to yearn for the courage and ability to brighten the lives of others with the most true, beautiful, and good declaration of the Universes; the individual’s relationship to a real, perfect, and wholly loving Father of Lights.


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  Our Father Sits

  By Kaye Cooper

Our Father sits in His place

at the center of all creation.

His reach stretches outward

beyond the farthest reach of any mind,

    of any imagination.

He holds in Himself

all of what is known

            and all of what might be

                                   and all of what might be thought

or dreamt

                        or one day reached.


Our Father sits.

He sees, hears and knows.

He knows each and every being

in His creation.

And He knows the route of each electron. He feels the movement of every star.

He lives through every life in this universe,

takes joy at every sunrise

       and weeps with every pain.


Our Father shares all of

He feels with us

                               and learns the life that we lead

                                 because we share with Him.

In all of time and space

                      there is not one experience 

                         which He does not share

                                        not one which He cannot find 

                 a way to use.

In all the patterns He has set for us

 all the children He has sent

and all that we have shared with Him, the

thread runs through:

                                    The Father’s love is being expressed His

     beauty learned anew.


He shares in our adventure and

    listens while we learn

And smiles with a warm and

   loving smile

                                          as we learn the lessons He has planned.

He lifts us up

not even step by step but smaller yet:

atom by atom

replacing us

with a new divinity a

new being

as shining as He.


Age upon age we live through this journey

becoming that which He knows we can.

And He waits very


                                              at the center of the Universe to

            greet us

                                                     when at last we find Him, to

welcome the being

           that we have become.


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First Letter from Eric  first written 1989


First let me tell you about Eric.  The team that developed the Adventures in Spiritual Living program to foster spiritual experience often felt assisted by unseen spiritual friends in discovering what activities would work.  Eric represents those unseen friends.  On a few occasions he has written us letters of encouragement and advice which are of value for anyone who sets out on the quest to personally experience spiritual reality.  Eric is, above all, interested in pursuing thrilling spiritual adventures.

Our image of him is as a young captain of a Viking long boat.  He is happy, enthusiastic, optimistic and joyous.  He is absolutely certain that we are all beloved children of God and consequently he is totally fearless in pursuing truth.  When he talks about the great adventure he means the adventure of pursuing truth wherever the spirit leads him.

Eric defines truth as the powerful attraction of participating in loving relations with spiritual sisters and brothers.  His truth can’t be merely known as fact.  It has to be lived as an experience of love in your soul.  Well that is enough about Eric for you to understand why we look forward to his infrequent letters and why we share them.  The first letter from Eric came in late 1989.

First Letter from Eric

Dearest Fellow Adventurers:

Our Father invites us into an endlessly thrilling adventure of living spiritually in his very presence.  And he does not delay the advent or the intensity of the experience one moment longer then we require.  Let us not delay?

The only barrier to our adventure is our own fear.  Fear of the spiritual unknown.  Fear that we will make fools of ourselves.  Fear that we might lose control of our lives.  But there is no cause for fear. Spiritually we are indestructible.  Both our Father and our brother Jesus guarantee our spiritual safety and indestructability and our personal sovereignty.  They have designed their domains so that we in our immature judgment can do no lasting damage either to ourselves or to our universe.  The only real danger to ourselves lies in not pursuing the spiritual adventure — because it leads to eternal growth in spirit and nothing else does.  The entire grand universe is designed so that we can do no harm by leading a sincere, boisterous, youthful, exuberant and joyful life.  No, there is no reason to fear.

The loyal and courageous child of God, living in his immediate presence is free to go absolutely anywhere the spirit leads him in pursuit of the work of his Father.  That work can be as calm as a mother’s soothing lullaby to her young child or as adventurously exciting as the Viking captain lashed to the prow of his ship while peering into the crashing sea for new reality to explore.  As his ship runs full sail in a tempest, he has no fear because he knows he is immortal and this sets him free for the total adventure.  No need for restraint.

We are like that.  We are immortal, and we are invited to a thrilling adventure.  Our personal, inner relationship with God prepares us for both the breathtaking, spine-tingling excitement and the unprecedented intimacy and personal tenderness of this adventure.

When you are ready and when you want it, the adventure of spiritual living is your birthright as a child of God.  And the first step to the tenderness and to the robustness is the step within.  So step within the higher reaches of your mind.  Open the doors and unshutter the windows. You have nothing to fear.  You are here to experience love, mercy and service.  You are not here to hide out and protect yourself in this life.  You are here to gather the experience of loving and being loved and of being transformed spiritually by love.  You are a beloved and immortal child of God, right now.  Open and let the light shine into the once dim rooms of your spiritual abode.  Open and invite our Father to show you the way home to him.

With astonishing love for you,  I am Off.


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Second Letter from Eric first written March 1990

Greetings and Love Abundant:

You should know by now that your adventure of ever new discoveries of the experience of friendship with you Father, God, Will never end.  You should also know by now that the whole-hearted pursuit of your friendship with God takes courage and faith.  I link courage and faith because the less of one you have the more of the other you need.  It takes courage and faith to pursue your friendship wherever the spirit of God leads you because no one can tell you exactly what to do or exactly what your experience will be.  But you can be sure of two things at least:

  1. Your sincere effort to know God will be successful and
  2. Your unique adventure of discovering God will excite you, enliven you and thrill you beyond anything else this life has to offer.

You are in pursuit of the experience of being loved by God.  Think of it.  God himself wants to spend the rest of eternity as your intimate, understanding best friend.

What an adventure.

While no person can tell you exactly how to experience this relationship with God, some who are on this adventure can help you improve your contact with the spirit of God within you, who will unerringly lead you step by step, as fast as you are able, into the fullness of this relationship.  And they can encourage you to trust this indwelling spirit of God.

When once you begin to feel God’s presence, his friendship and his loving mercy and forgiveness, you will know that this inner relationship is without any doubt, the pearl of great price, and you will be willing to restate all earthly priorities as subordinate and subservient to the pursuit of this relationship.  This discovery of God and the remaking of self in his image by the mechanism of personal choice is the very purpose of life.

So I urge you to dispose of anything material in your life which truly stands in the way of this life of discovery.  Free yourself sufficiently of the untrue materialistic and selfish philosophies and values systems of men and set sail with me on this adventure of discovery.  You are free, absolutely free, to discover God for yourself.  God does not promise that the sea will always be tranquil or the sky blue or the breezes gentle and to our backs.  But he does promise us success in our quest if we continue to pursue him in faith.  The only way we can fail is by choosing not to try.

God is with you even now.  Can you feel the tingling excitement of being with Him?  That’s what life can be—when it is lived as an adventure with God.
Bon Voyage.  Adventure calls me.  I am off.

Love always


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Third Letter from Eric  first written 1991

Dear Ones

God is not like your father—he is your Father and he recognizes and joyfully accepts the responsibility of personally rearing you to spiritual maturity.  And then he will continue to be your Father-friend, encourager, adviser, sustainer and more.

Even right now your Father has plans to share his kingdom and his power with you and these are not plans only for the far distant future.  They are plans for now and more for next year and much, much more as eternity unfolds.

You are God’s child.  He loves you, he forgives you and he longs to share all that he has and knows with you.  You are his child and you can be like him and you can exercise his power for the benefit only of others—just as he does.

Do you want his love?  Do you want his personal attention and teaching?  If you do and if you believe and if you live like your Father is real and important to you and his way is important, then you have accepted God as your Father.  All that remains is for you to talk to him, share everything and imagine his replies for he will speak to you in your imagination.

And if you are God’s child and I am God’s child, then we are brothers and sisters and have family ties one to the other.  While we may be unlike in many ways, we bear the cosmic nobility of our Father which longs to be expressed.  I pledge to help you express our Father according to your understanding of him, and I pray your support as I seek to express him in my way.

Welcome to our family and all honor to our noble Father.



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Fourth Letter from Eric

October 25, 2011

Greetings My Beloved,

Our Father, who seems so remote, is in fact immediately accessible to us.  It is a fact, not a metaphor, that he resides in your heart / soul and relates to you as one person to one person.  When you listen to him and begin to follow his leading, you become his eternal spirit child.  This business of being a child of God has a destiny attached to it.  You are destined to grow to be like our Father.  And what is he like?  I have only begun to discover him but astonishing love always flows from his will and his way.  As we grow to be more like him, astonishing love will also flow from our every action.  I say action because our Father expects us to actually do what we believe is right.  Thinking about living a life of loving service, wanting to do it someday and believing in doing it is awesome but it is not enough.  We are not just to believe in righteousness.  We are to do it.  We all believe we are too weak and the world is too strong and hostile for us to change.  But the spirit of God is within us.  The kingdom of heaven is within us.  The power to change ourselves is within us and then the world will change as we go forth being and doing what the spirit within leads us to be and do.

The spirit of God residing in your soul wants intentional relationship with you and will lead and teach you how to grow to be like God.  This eternal life and this almost boundless universe provide an experiential school for your benefit.  The only grades are pass and fail and you can fail only by refusing to try.  All effort to be like our Father is honored and rewarded.

Consult the spirit within you right now for verification of these truths I am about to state for you.  He will verify with calmness felt near your heart.

  1. You are a spiritual child of God.
  2. Your destiny is more than you can imagine.
  3. The power to live a noble life of character, purpose and loving service is even now within you.
  4. Your life as a spirit being has already begun.
  5. Once the spirit life begins, it will never end unless you intentionally refuse it.
  6. Survival is not in question.  You are safe, secure and free.
  7. The spirit within is worthy of your absolute trust.  He will lead you neither too fast nor too slow.  Therefore be neither impatient nor timid in your pace.
  8. Live courageously.  Your animal life will end but your spiritual life is eternal.

There are many, many, many other truths the spirit within will share with you as soon as you are ready to understand them and to remain balanced in your spirit control of mind and mood.

Love always


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More Good News From Jesus

By William Cooper 11-8-2015
Following his resurrection, Jesus made 19 appearances to groups of his followers.  His message to all of them was that they should go into all the world teaching and preaching his good news message that God is our Father and that we are therefore family.  That is the highly condensed or compacted good news.  Jesus’ good news delivered in its fullness. The good news in its fullness is extensive and perhaps infinitely extensive.  The following is a first step in decompacting Jesus’s sufficient but highly compacted good news by stating some of the logical corollaries involved in the statement.
  1. You are a spiritual person who inhabits a physical body.  They are both you but the spiritual you is eternal.
  2. God is your loving spiritual parent.  God the Father is your spiritual father and loves you and cares for you as your father.  God the Spirit is your spiritual mother and loves you and cares for you as your mother.  Both are very deeply, personally and constantly involved in your welfare and rearing.  You are a first generation offspring of these two aspects of the one God who is the originator and creator of all that is.  You are not a slave, a distant grandchild, an adoptee nor merely analogous to a child of God.  You are the real thing.
  3. All people everywhere are children of God and therefore are entitled to the respect due to the immediate family of the most gracious, generous and powerful person in all of creation.  Since all people are children of God, they are all brothers and sisters and should behave with affection and compassion for one another.
  4. All children of God have a fabulous, exciting and awesome destiny which is important to God and should be fostered and cooperated with by all persons.
  5. God’s domain operates as a loving family, not an arbitrary kingdom of servants.
  6. Immediate two way personal relationship between God and each of his children is available to each child simply for the striving to have such a relationship.  The benefits of this relationship are immense, awesome and eternal.
  7. Each child of God can experience the fatherhood of God and the motherhood of God.  For each child, God as father has in mind a career of growing knowledge, wisdom and progressive service to the family.  As father, God will give power and authority to each child as soon as he/she is capable of exercising it responsibly.  God as mother comforts, encourages and nurtures each child both physically and spiritually.  From physical conception and ever after, God as mother supports, cherishes and comforts every child without preference or qualification.  By paying attention to these parental ministrations, the children of God can experience and get to know their spiritual parents.
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Spiritual Growth I


Habits to Foster Spiritual Growth

Kaye Cooper and William Cooper
Fostering the following habits in yourself will favor growth toward spiritual maturity.
Cultivate sensitivity to divine values.  See Bill’s Book of Values at BillsBooks”N”Beyond.com for lists of higher values such as love, service, mercy, tolerance, respect, or forgiveness.  Also see “Cultivate a Value” at BillsBooks”N”Beyond.com for a technique for cultivation of values. Recognize and appreciate religious living in others.  See “Personal Spirituality” at BillsBooks”N”Beyond.com for a description of religious living. Meditate reflectively on cosmic meanings.  Reflective meditation is relaxed, deep thinking and values sensing.  Meanings are revealed by exploring the why of things.  Cosmic meanings are the really big meanings like the answers to the question ”Why would God have something be the way this seems to be? “Why is this life so important?”  “What is my eternal destiny?”   Solve problems with God’s help in worship.  Talk back and forth with God regarding your problems while you commune in worship.  Employ your imagination for God’s response. Share your spiritual life with others.  Talk about your experiences of God’s presence. Avoid selfishness. Refuse to presume on divine mercy.  Do not intentionally think or act contrary to your understanding of God’s will on the presumption that God will not notice or will forgive you. Live as if you are in the presence of God.  In fact, you are. Be kind.  Be loving.  Respect and love God.  Love and benefit all other beings. End

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How I Love

Life is too short to keep my heart closed. All that matters all along, All that matters when I’m gone, All that I have that carries on Is how I love. Kaye Cooper


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Spiritual Practices 

Sharon Porter at 2nd Joyful Living Retreat Belton, TX  2011
Spiritual practices are anything you do intentionally to help you grow spiritually.  The following list of useful spiritual practices was generated at a Joyful Living retreat at Belton, Texas in 2011.  These practices are useful for contemplation.  Also, you can pick one and “test” it for a day or a week to see what experience it brings.  
  1. Enjoy spiritual poetry.  Read, write, or memorize and recite.
  2. Enjoy inspirational music.  Listen, play, or sing. 
  3. Pray for spiritual progress for yourself and others.  Imagine how that progress would change motives and actions.
  4. Adore God’s qualities.  Desire them deeply for yourself and others.
  5. Meditate and encourage receptivity to spirit.
  6. Read spiritual teachings and think deeply about them.
  7. Memorize sayings or “scripture”.
  8. Schedule time for spiritual focus and keep the appointment.
  9. Journal (write) your inner feelings and thoughts.
  10. Nature walk to observe and reflect.
  11. Commune with nature.  Feel more than think.  Appreciate.
  12. Make a habit of looking for good in others.
  13. Pray silent, brief prayers in the moment of need or gratefulness.
  14. Clear bad feelings and lift spirits by counting blessings.
  15. Apply creativity to imagine what would be best.
  16. Produce inspirational art or music.
  17. Garden as cooperation with the spirit of life.
  18. Commune with your Spirit Within.
  19. Engage frequently in conversations with your Inner Spirit.
  20. Think of spirit as unseen but real, and contactable.
  21. Treat everything as sacred and entitled to respect.
  22. Contemplate the spiritual impact of what you do.
  23. Spend some “porch time” daydreaming and letting ideas drift in freely.
  24. Think deeply on the meaning/purpose of life and its activities.  What is it for?  What are we supposed to learn from it?
  25. Cultivate values.
  26. Contemplate values for the meaning they add to life.  Why does it matter to you if you care about others?
  27. Prepare the path with spiritual values to be used in the future.  (See BillsBooks”N”Beyond.com Activities – “Prepare the Path”.)
  28. Listen and respond with spiritual motivation (kindness.)
  29. Go about giving mental love hugs.  Be gentle.
  30. Serve others unselfishly.
  31. Physically dance while imagining the spirit to be your partner.
  32. Move with music while communing with spirit.
  33. Practice intentional empathy. (Empathy is understanding how another is feeling.)
  34. Practice intentional compassion.  (Compassion is sympathy for the suffering of another and a desire to help.)
  35. Greet your new day with joy and optimism.  Expect new insights.
  36. Acknowledge the involvement of celestial persons in your life.
  37. Explore spiritual living by thought, feeling and action.
  38. Express your gratitude to spirit for life’s gifts and opportunities.
  39. Make a commitment each day on awakening to find and express goodness in that day’s events.
  40. Enjoy gentle and polite humor.
  41. Visualize spiritual reality.
  42. Trust and have faith in spirit.
  43. Engage in spiritual speculation.  Why would God do it that way?
  44. Love, respect, and appreciate yourself and others.
  45. Let God love you.  Feel God’s presence.
  46. “Soak” in values.
  47. Engage in intentional forgiving.
  48. Predict spiritual consequences.
  49. Act on your service urges.
  50. Seek spiritual guidance, listen and respond.
  51. Contemplate the immensity and the miracle of the cosmos.
  52. Spend some time in rapt attention to what you are experiencing.  Mindfulness of what you feel physically and spiritually.
  53. Let go of what is bothering you, especially guilt.
  54. Review and contemplate a list of spiritual practices.
  55. Surrender control to spirit.
  56. Celebrate spiritual success and insight.
  57. Look for and plan service opportunities.
  58. Contemplate the meaning of love repeatedly.
  59. Play with spirit.
  60. Soak in spiritual practices.
  61. Trust and confide in others.
  62. Feel your soul and the Spirit Within.
  63. Share your goals and sense of purpose with your Inner Spirit as well as with other people.
  64. Remind yourself and others “Everything you do in this world matters”, even though it may not have the result you expect or want.
  65. Contemplate how love would behave in various situations.
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Working on Forgiving

By William Cooper
These comments are derived from a Truthseekers activity.  To forgive is to give up anger and resentment regarding an offense.  Forgiveness is more certain to benefit the forgiver than the forgiven. Consequently, it is worth some effort to forgive.  Forgiveness is dealt with in more detail in Bill’s Book of Values pp. 30-34. There are a number of things you can do to be intentional about forgiving.
  • Go to your heart.  Going to your heart means seeking calm and access to your inner wisdom.  A way to seek inner calmness is to breathe a little slower and a little deeper and feel agitation and tenseness dissolve.  The place you have prepared for yourself in your heart is a place of refuge and peacefulness that you can retreat to whenever you need to.  No one else even needs to know you are there.  It is also a place where you have instant access to your values.  In your heart, you can tap into strength, courage, tolerance, forgiveness, peacemaking, patience, respect or any other value you recognize.  All you have to do is ask and trust that the next step for the revelation of what you need will be revealed to you.  In that way your heart is a place for the beginnings of miraculous transformations.
  • Gently restrain your wilder emotions.  You are unlikely to be your best person when you are under the power of anger, dread, fear, guilt, etc.  In your heart, you have available resources to quiet these screeming emotions.  They have their purposes but our lives should be under the control of our higher values, not our basic survival emotions.  Going to your heart is a great intervention tool to avoid confrontation and to prevent it from escallating into violence.
  • While soaking in the calm and wisdom of your heart you can consider the event you need to forgive.  In this circumstance, many offenses don’t seem big or important and they can be dismissed as just stuff that happens as imperfect people interact with one another.  Everybody is a jerk sometimes and that just has to be tolerated with minimal consequences.  When you have reached that point, you have forgiven the offense.
  • If the short cut to forgiveness doesn’t resolve your feelings of hurt or anger, you need to respect your feelings and explore their causes.  I said respect your feelings, not trust them or be controlled by them.
  • Seeing with new eyes involves going to your heart and considering with charity and good will what alternative and justifiable assumptions might have caused the offense.  When you access the situation more charitably, it is easier to let go of anger and hurt.
  • You may need first to act to right an injustice to yourself or another.
  • You may need to act to control the damage or end the threat.
  • You may need to talk through the offense with the offender.
  • Whatever action you decide to take, be sure to stay connected to your heart and treat the other person with respect and caring.  Whenever memory of the offense arises, remind yourself of your decision or desire to forgive.
End Back to Top

Philosophy of Living Principles

Prepared 2007 by William Cooper
In The Urantia Book (UB 1098:4 / 100:5.1) a high spiritual personality comments: “Too few have learned how to install a philosophy of living in the place of religious authority.”  This is recommending that we abandon religious authority as a guide to living our lives and instead develop and follow a philosophy of living that promotes a noble character.  As one of our activities at the July 27-29, 2007 Spiritual Living Conference at Belton, Texas we undertook to start defining a philosophy of living which would guide our lives.  The dictionary definition of philosophy is a beginning point. Philosophy is a system for guiding life, as a body of principles of conduct, religious beliefs or traditions.  This definition could include inflexible theology, dogma and religious laws and rules.  Since The Urantia Book advocates a personal religion of following the leading of the fragment of God who inhabits our soul, we can be certain that fossilized rules of righteousness are not part of the philosophy of living recommended.  Our personal philosophy of living can draw upon any source of wisdom.  The Urantia Book is a good source but it is not the only source of truth.  Ultimately the best sources of truth for your philosophy of living are the sources which the Spirit Within can use to enlighten your mind and soul.  A philosophy of living includes such things as: How do you see the world and your place in it?  frightening, exciting, threatening, growing, dying, a contest, a school, a marvelous adventure a pointless game, material/emotional, spiritual?  How do you view difficulties and challenges?  to be avoided whenever possible?  To be faced with graciousness,  goodness and charm? As opportunities to learn good spiritual habits?  How and what do you think of other people and even of yourself?  Is it Godlike  to forgive and to be tolerant, just and even merciful? Do you evaluate  people in terms of the best they are capable of or of the worst? Do You  relate to other people for the purpose of benefiting yourself or do you  seek to serve their real spiritual, emotional and material needs?  What place do wealth, power and prestige have in your philosophy? Is that as it should be?  Where privilege, advantage, and power for change are concerned, what is fair?  Conference participants undertook to explore several Urantia Book passages and to extract philosophy of living principles as best we could; then we added some principles from unidentified sources.  You could look at these principles and say these are just sayings or facts or maybe even truths.  This is correct because they do not become part of your philosophy of living until you give them that high status and allow them to guide your thoughts and behavior.  Would you like for these to be part of your system for guiding your life?  The following children of God were attending and contributing to this effort.  Matt & Peter Callac,  Sharon Porter & Ted Lanier,   Carol & Skip Weatherford, Mitzie & Michael Dentler, Jean-Pierre & Nickla Heudier, Nancy Johnson. Kaye & Bill Cooper, Jeannie & Brad Wall, Diana Drake and Mary Huggins Thanks to Carol Weatherford for very promptly typing up our hand-written principles. This is the report of what we came up with.  No sources are specifically referenced because the authority for one’s philosophy of living should be the Spirit of Truth which ministers to each of us, the Inner Spirit (the spark of God within each of us) and the truth instinct of human mind.  The list of potential principles got long.  Feel free to approach it in pieces to prevent your mind from wandering away from the material. It is worth your time and attention. 

Exercise One:

Ask yourself what would be the consequences in your life if you really believed and practiced these principles?  In doing this I was brought face-to-face with some spiritual deficiencies.  I think that is healthy. Choose any three of these principles randomly by number (1-281), Note the numbers so you have them available for reference in your reflection, and then think deeply about having those three as part of your philosophy of living, your personal guiding principles. How would that affect your attitude toward life? How would it affect your interactions with others? How would it affect your role in the cosmic family? Would you be a better, happier person?  In reflecting on these principles, think deeply on their meanings and their consequences. Don’t just read quickly and pass on. The numbers are for reference only. They do not indicate importance or hierarchy of principles.

Exercise Two: 

Engage in a cooperative game with your Inner Spirit The way this game works is that you choose one principle to consider meditatively and in depth (not hurriedly). You remain alert to thoughts or impressions that come to you. Consider whether you agree with the statement and the ways the principle is true. The object is to have fun discovering new insights into the possible meanings and applications of the passage. Things that a quick reading would miss. Expect to discover values embedded in the passage. Expect to be surprised by new meanings, new truth, new beauty, and new goodness. My Inner Spirit and I really enjoy playing this game together. Love,  Bill Cooper 2-8-2008 End Back to Top

Jesus on True Religion

Prepared by William Cooper
Jesus’ discourse on true religion (UB p.1728) was delivered ten months before his crucifixion.  The Urantia Book describes it as one of the most remarkable addresses which his apostles ever listened to throughout all their years of association with him.  I think it is still very remarkable even after 2000 years of Christianity.  His comments were prompted by a question from the apostle Thomas, which was “Master, I would really like to know just what is wrong with the religion of our enemies at Jerusalem?  What is the real difference between their religion and ours?  Why is it we are at such diversity of belief when we all profess to serve the same God?” I am going to present Jesus’ response in seven sub-topics. I have indicated my comments and questions by presenting them in italics.  An asterisk after a word indicates the word is defined at the end of the article. My seven sub-topics are:
  1. Distinguishing the Forms of Religious Devotion
  2. Freedom*, Liberty*, Heroes* and Prophets*
  3. Unifying Effect of Religion of the Spirit
  4. All Things Are Sacred
  5. Proof You Are God Knowing
  6. Reassurance of Salvation
  7. Fruits of the Spirit, Consequences of Being Spirit Led*

Distinguishing the Forms of Religious Devotion

At any one time and among any one people there are to be found three distinct and coexisting forms of religious devotion. And these three are:
  1. Primitive religion. The semi natural and instinctive urge to fear mysterious energies and worship* superior forces.  It is chiefly a religion of fear.
  2. The religion of civilization.  This consists of the advancing religious concepts and practices of the civilizing races.  It is the religion of the mind – the intellectual theology of established religious tradition.  All organized religious traditions are in this category.
  3. True religion.  This is the religion of revelation to your soul [by your personal Spirit Within and the spirit of Jesus]. What these spirits reveal is supernatural* values*, even a partial insight into eternal realities*.  This is the religion of the spirit, whose truth* is demonstrated* in human experience*.
What are supernatural* values? (Look at fruits of the spirit, and spiritual weapons, below) What does “demonstrated in human experience” mean?  In what forms does such experience come to us?  Consider both inner experience and social or outer experience as well as sudden insight versus slow realization.  Are the events in other people’s lives part of our experience if we view them with compassion and empathy?  The great difference between the religion of the mind and the religion of the spirit is that, while religion of the mind is upheld by ecclesiastical (churchly) authority, religion of the spirit is wholly based on human experience of spirit inspired insights into supernatural values, eternal realities, and our Heavenly Parent’s character.  We must educate ourselves to know that we should accept the spirit’s leading.  [See fruits of the spirit, spiritual weapons, etc. below.]  This experience of spirit inspired insights can come suddenly or as slow, accumulated recognition, what we might call the growth of wisdom. The religion of the spirit means effort, struggle, conflict, faith*, determination, love*, loyalty*, and progress. The religion of the mind –the theology of authority – requires little or none of these exertions from its formal believers. Why effort, struggle, and conflict?  Can’t we avoid that?  Maybe it is because this is what meaningful human experience consists of. These efforts, struggles, and conflicts are between higher values and immaturities in one’s self.  These deal with our efforts to achieve self-mastery—to deal with life by faith and by trust in goodness.  These are efforts and struggles in everyone’s life.  These struggles and conflicts are contests within ourselves to establish reliable self-discipline to live according to higher values even when no other human knows the tendencies we struggle to control. The outcomes of these struggles determine our character which in turn has immense consequences in building our souls.   Jesus described his teachings as a new and very different religion that makes its chief appeal* to the divine spirit of our Heavenly Parent which resides in the mind of each person.  Why does religion of the spirit make its chief appeal to the Spirit Within and how?  Perhaps it is because we get an attraction response to truth through the Spirit Within.  Educating ourselves to identify that nudge gives us a way to recognize truth and God’s way. This new religion will derive its authority*, it’s proof, from the spiritual fruits of its acceptance* that will so certainly appear in the personal experience* of all who really and truly become believers in the truths of this higher spiritual communion*[See fruits of the spirit, below.] Jesus calls upon us to be born again, to be brought into spiritual life by the experience of personal communion with the spirit of God within.  [What will the experience of personal communion with God be like?  Extraordinary or not?]  Jesus has called us out of the darkness of authoritarian and traditional religion into the transcendent* light of the realization of making for ourselves the greatest discovery possible for the human soul to make – the supernal (celestial, heavenly) experience of finding God for* ourselves, in* ourselves, and of* ourselves, and of doing all this as a fact in our own personal experience*. [What do “for, in and of ourselves connote?] The religion of the mind ties you hopelessly to the past; the religion of the spirit consists in progressive revelation and ever beckons you on toward higher and holier achievements in spiritual ideals* and eternal realities*.  [See fruits of the spirit, spiritual weapons, etc. below for an identification of spiritual ideals and eternal realities.] To summarize Jesus’ remarks on forms of religious devotion: Primitive religion is based on fear. The religion of civilization is founded on intellectual theology, tradition and rules.  Religion of the spirit is constantly renewed by inner spirit revelation as clarified by the Spirit of Jesus.  All three forms coexist in a culture and probably even in an individual’s spiritual life.  The validity of the meanings and values revealed by your Inner Spirit is proved by the fruits of actually living such meanings and values.  So, not actually living our meanings and values deprives our world and time of the spiritual fruits which would demonstrate their validity.  The fruits flow from the living, not from the mere knowledge of meanings and values.  There is power in our living this way because the Inner Spirit of each witness calls this behavior to its subject’s attention with approval and attraction.

II. Freedom, Liberty, Heroes and Prophets

While the religion of authority may impart a present feeling of settled security, you pay for such a temporary satisfaction the price of the loss of your spiritual freedom* and religious liberty*.  The religion of the spirit leaves you forever free to follow the truth wherever the leadings of the spirit may take you.  And be assured, this spirit has many things to impart to each generation which other generations have refused to hear. Our Paradise Parent did indeed speak through Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, Amos and Hosea, but did not cease to minister words of truth to the world when these prophets of old made an end of their utterances.  Our Creator Parent is no respecter of races or generations in that the truth is provided in one age and withheld from another. Jesus admonishes us to give up the practice of always quoting the prophets of old and of praising historical spiritual heroes, and instead to aspire to become living prophets* of the Most High and spiritual heroes* of the coming kingdom of loving service and mutual encouragement and compassion[What is a living prophet and what is spiritual heroism?] We must cease to seek for the word of God only on the pages of the olden records of theological authority.  Those who are born of the spirit of God shall discern the word of God regardless of where it appears to take origin.  Divine truth* must not be discounted because the channel of its bestowal is apparently human.  But all of the ways of knowing about the fact of God are less important than increasingly growing in the ability to feel the presence of God.  What does it mean “fact of God” and “feel the presence of God?”  How is feeling the presence of God more revelatory of divine truth than knowing the facts about God?  Doesn’t this suggest that one who feels the presence of God and responds, even without knowledge of the fact of God, is practicing religion of the spirit? Summarizing Sub Section II: Religion of the Spirit liberates us from all restraints including religious traditions, holy books, priests and human teachers and prophets.  We are encouraged to become living spokespersons for God and persons of courage and nobility of purpose regarding the coming kingdom of loving service and mutual encouragement. 

III. Unifying Effect of Religion of the Spirit

Every race of mankind has its own outlook on human existence; therefore must the religions of the mind ever run true to these various racial viewpoints.  Never can the religions of authority come to unification.  Human unity and mortal brotherhood can be achieved only through the super endowment of the religion of the spirit.  Racial minds differ, but all humanity is indwelt by the same divine and eternal spirit.  The hope of human mutual encouragement and compassion can only be realized as the divergent mind religions of authority become impregnated with and overshadowed by the unifying and ennobling religion of the spirit – the religion of direct, personal spiritual experience.  [What is spiritual experience as distinguished from nonspiritual experience?  Look at fruits of the spirit and consequences of the spirit listed below for insights into spiritual experience.] The religions of authority can only divide men and set them in conscientious array against each other; the religion of the spirit will progressively draw men together and cause them to become understandingly sympathetic* with one another.  The religions of authority crystallize into lifeless creeds*; the religion of the spirit grows into the increasing joy* and liberty* of ennobling* deeds* of loving service and merciful* ministration. Summarizing Sub section III: Loving unity is God’s goal.  There are racial and authoritarian religious outlooks which interfere with unification of humanity into a spiritual family relationship.  Substantial participation in religion of the spirit is the only remedy for this.  Religion of the spirit promotes unification of purpose among various religionists at the level of doing God’s will even without agreement as to what God’s will is or how to do it.  Creeds, theology and dogma attempt to enforce unity at the orthodox creedal level.  That is not possible and involves intolerable interference with spiritual freedom which would itself contradict God’s will that we be free to pursue the truth wherever the spirit leads us.

IV. All Things Are Sacred

There is only one adventure which is more satisfying and thrilling than the attempt to discover the will of the living God, and that is the supreme experience of honestly trying to do that divine will.  The will of God can be done in any earthly occupation.  Some callings are not holy and others secular.  All things are sacred in the lives of those who are spirit led; that is, subordinated* to truth*, ennobled by love*, dominated by mercy* and restrained by fairness – justice.  [Did Jesus really mean “all things” are sacred?]  When you once begin to find God in your soul, presently you will begin to discover him in other people’s souls and eventually in all the creatures and creations of a mighty universe.  But what chance does the Creator have to appear as a God of supreme loyalties and divine ideals in the souls of people who give little or no time to the thoughtful contemplation of such eternal realities. Summarizing Sub section IV: We should give thoughtful contemplation to discovering supreme loyalties and divine ideals in all creatures and creations and act accordingly, and consequently all things will become sacred to us. We should remember, regardless of what we are doing, everything we do or say or think matters and should exhibit goodness.

V. Proof You Are God Knowing

There are two positive and powerful demonstrations of the fact that you are God-knowing. First: The fruits of the spirit of God will progressively show forth in your routine daily life.  [Spiritual fruits are treated below.] Second: Your entire life plan will furnish positive proof that you have unreservedly risked everything you are and have on the adventure of survival after death in pursuit of the hope of finding the God of eternity, whose presence you have foretasted in time. Summarizing Sub section V:  We risk everything by acting in accordance with faith (the positive leading of the Spirit Within) that God is our Parent and has a Glorious plan for us in administering God’s universes.  Allowing faith to dominate all priorities in our lives, we risk loss of material wealth, power, privilege and influence.

VI. Reassurance of Salvation

Now, make no mistake, our Heavenly Parent will ever respond to the faintest flicker of faith.  God takes note of the physical and superstitious emotions of the primitive man.  And with those honest but fearful souls whose faith is so weak that it amounts to little more than an intellectual conformity to a passive attitude of assent to religious authority, our Heavenly Parent is ever alert to honor and foster all such feeble attempts to reach out.  But you who have been called out of darkness into the light are expected to believe with a whole heart; your faith* shall dominate* the combined attitudes of body, mind and spirit. What does “attitudes of body, mind, and spirit” mean?  Attitudes of body: The things we apply our physical energies to. Attitudes of mind: The ideas we apply our intellect to. Attitudes of Spirit: The goals and values we pursue with our intellect and our physical effort.

VII. Fruits of the Spirit

Jesus said the fruits of the spirit would inevitably manifest and show forth in the lives of those who are born of the spirit and who therefore follow the leading of the spirit.  [What does “born of the spirit” mean? It means brought into spiritual existence. Spiritual birth results from recognition of God.  Spiritual growth results from appreciating and incorporating the admired qualities of God into our service to others.  “Born of the spirit” is a literal, not a figurative, reference.] The Urantia Book provides several lists of the spiritual consequences when you live in cooperation with the spirit.  These lists of the consequences of following spiritual leading provide partial answers to some of a religionist’s most basic questions.  Such as:
  • What thoughts or behaviors are spiritual?
  • What is God’s will in this situation?
  • What is real and permanent?
  • How should I live my life?
  • What behavior has power to transform the world?
  • What are the benefits of living the spirit led life?
  • What are the super mortal ideals I am supposed to strive to achieve?
So let’s take a look at some of these lists of the fruits of living the spirit led life.  These originate (are inspired) by spiritual ministrations to us.  When you see any of these fruits expressed in your life, or in someone else’s life, you may be sure that person is spiritually alive and is being led by their Spirit Within.  It is a holy thing and a privilege to observe and recognize. Some fruits of the spirit are: [Modifiers here are very important.  The modifying words all indicate a second mile of involvement for the benefit of the other person]. These are super mortal* ideals dealing with relationships.
  • loving service
  • sincere fairness
  • confiding trust
  • forgiving tolerance
  • courageous loyalty
  • unfailing goodness
  • unselfish devotion
  • enlightened honesty
  • merciful ministry
  • enduring peace
  • undying hope
Intense striving is involved in actively living to achieve these super mortal ideals of service to other persons.  Conflict with self-centered motivations will arise.  Intense striving for the attainment of super mortal* ideals is always characterized by increasing: 
  • patience 
  • forbearance
  • fortitude 
  • tolerance.
The joy* of the Spirit of Jesus when consciously experienced in human life is a 
  • tonic for health 
  • stimulus for mind 
  • energy for the soul
You can consciously experience the joy of the Spirit of Jesus by focusing your attention on your delight in the insights given you by the spirit.   Spiritual weapons, [These are an endowment of the arrival of the Spirit of Jesus at Pentecost] They are fruits of the spirit too.  Jesus in talking about why the heathen rage said religionists were too timid and should take the spiritual kingdom by spiritual assault.  The spiritual weapons are the power to build the kingdom. They are the way to conquer the world and bring it into the kingdom.  The enemies of the kingdom to be banished with spiritual weapons are evil, hate, anger, and fear.  [Note the superlative modifiers below indicating these qualities are to be demonstrated in superabundant generosity and love.] Spiritual weapons – Only these spiritual weapons have the power to spiritually conquer and transform the world.  They include:
  • unfailing forgiveness
  • matchless good will
  • abounding love
  • overwhelming evil with good
  • vanquishing hate with love [even for your enemies]
  • destroying fear with courageous faith in truth
  • goodwill of love and mutual trust
being active and positive in love and mercy [Positive refers to enticing or luring with love rather than demanding or forcing with fear, guilt or obligation.] Fruits of divinity are fruits of the spirit.  As we become more like God, more divine, we exhibit the actions, attitudes and goals of the divine. As the love comprehension of deity finds spiritual expression in the lives of God-knowing mortals there are yielded the fruits of divinity which include: 
  • intellectual* peace*
  • social* progress
  • moral* satisfaction
  • spiritual* joy* 
  • cosmic* wisdom*.
  • As a spirit led person you will choose to be:
  • subordinated* to truth*
  • ennobled* by love*
  • dominated* by mercy* 
  • restrained by fairness – justice

Religious unity and understanding sympathy are  consequences (fruits) of the religion of following the leading of the Spirit Within.

Twelve spirit-like performances which reveal genuine spiritual faith – genuine active trust in the leadings of the Spirit.
  1. Ethics* and morals* progress
  2. Sublime* trust in the goodness of God
  3. Profound courage* and confidence
  4. Inexplicable poise* and sustaining tranquility
  5. Mysterious poise* and composure of personality
  6. Divine trust in ultimate victory
  7. Unswerving belief in God
  8. Undaunted faith in the soul’s survival
  9. Living and triumphing despite hardships
  10. Altruism* continues to survive
  11. Sublime* belief in universe unity & divine guidance
  12. Goes right on worshiping* God in spite of anything

Jesus on True Religion – Definitions

Acceptance – Undertaking as a responsibility or duty.  Taking as true and satisfactory. Altruism – Unselfish devotion to the interests and welfare of others, especially as a principle of action. Appeal – To ask for help, sanction or corroboration. Authority – Rightful influence.  Validation.  Verification.  Reliability. Communion – A sharing of thoughts or feelings.  Intimate talk.  Deep sharing. Cosmic – Of or pertaining to the universe, especially as distinct from earth. Courage – Commitment to follow higher values and to face danger, fear or challenges without giving in to fear. Creed – Formal statement of religious belief. Deed – An act as distinguished from words or thoughts. Demonstrated – Making evident or proving.  Described or illustrated by practical application. Dominate – To rule over; govern; control.  To permeate or characterize.  Ethics – A system of moral principles of right and wrong as applied generally to everyone in a large group. Ennoble – To make finer or more noble in nature.  Dignify.  Elevate. Experience – Active participation in events or activities leading to the accumulation of knowledge, understanding, or skill. Faith – Dynamic and living trust in the reliability and guidance of God.  Faith is beyond intellectual belief.  It is belief sufficient that you act accordingly.  Your faith becomes part of how you live.  Faith is the positive leading of your Adjuster.  Positive leading indicates the use of attractions or lures to virtue rather than motivation from fear or guilt (negative). For – On behalf of. Freedom – Lack of restraint. Hero – One noted for courage or nobility of purpose.  One who acts to benefit others especially where personal danger or risk is involved. Ideal – A standard or model of perfection. In – Identifies where. Intellectual – Involving the intellect.  Mental. Joy – Feeling of high pleasure or delight.  Happiness.  Gladness. Liberty – Right to act in a manner of one’s own choosing. Love – The desire to do good to others.  Friendship.  Friendliness.  Compassion.  Respect.  Kindness. Loyalty – Faithfulness. Mercy – Kindness beyond what can be claimed or expected and beyond what justice requires.  Applied love which sets the guilt of evil doing to one side and forgives.  (UB 2018:1) Moral – Concerned with the judgment of right and wrong in human action or character. Of – Originating from.  Caused by or resulting from. Peace – Inner freedom from annoyance, distraction or anxiety.  Calm.  Serenity.  Tranquility.  Freedom from strife or distress. Poise – Steadiness, equilibrium, balance, dignity.  Self-confident manner.  Composure.  Prophet – One who speaks for God by divine inspiration. Reality – Quality or state of being actual or true. Social – Living together in communities. Spirit led – Subordinated to truth, ennobled by love and restrained by fairness – justice. Spiritual – Concerned with or affecting the soul. Sublime – The highest degree.  Majestic. Subordinate – Subject to the authority or control of. Super mortal – Spiritual.  Divine. Supernatural – Above, over or outside the natural. Sympathetic – Showing kind feelings toward others. Transcendent – Above and independent of the material universe. Truth – An understanding of cosmic relationships, universe facts and spiritual values.  (UB 1138:6) The living spirit relationship of all things and beings as they are coordinated in the eternal ascent Godward.  (UB 647:4) Value – A principle, quality or standard considered worthwhile or desirable.  Wisdom – Understanding of what is true, right or lasting.  Combines insight as to what is real with experience as to how it works. Worship – Reverent love and allegiance; Ardent, humble devotion.  Very deep appreciation and gratitude regarding goodness. End Back to Top

Spirit Assisted Thinking and Living

By: Bill Cooper May 2006
Spiritual living is living incorporating the assistance of the Spirit Within us. Our Thought Adjusters are the Spirit Within us and will lead us according to God’s will for our lives. Loyally following the leading of our Thought Adjusters is religion of the Spirit. It is the religion Jesus practiced and the religion he taught and modeled for his Urantia followers and for his universe. To be “religious” about anything is to be loyal, sincere, trustworthy, active, and enthusiastically committed. Reliably and intentionally following the leading of the Spirit constitutes religion of the Spirit and it is spiritual living. Religion of the Spirit is a unique path for each individual and it requires no priest, no church, no theology nor any rules made or interpreted by other humans.

Spirit Assisted Thinking 

Spirit assisted thinking should be an integral part of spiritual living and religion of the Spirit. It is a method for accessing and implementing our Thought Adjuster’s leading. Spirit assisted thinking is thinking aided by the Adjuster. It is a product of communion with one’s Thought Adjuster. It also includes attuning to the truth instincts of the cosmic mind. Spirit assisted thinking involves establishing habits and training and disciplining our minds to receive and use these spiritual / mindal instincts and leadings. The leadings and teachings of our Thought Adjusters need to be brought into our conscious minds in some way in order for us to make decisions and take action on them. Spirit assisted thinking is how we invite these superconscious leadings into our conscious minds. It is precisely the kind of thinking that a child of God who is trying to follow the Spirit’s leading should do. It is talking with and listening to the Spirit to get the Spirit’s suggestions. The kingdom (family) of God is within and that is where the Spirit of God resides and teaches the soul of each human. Spirit assisted thinking incorporates the Spirit of God into our thinking process and allows the inner kingdom to flow into our conscious mind. Spiritual living is living your life by sincerely trying to follow the leading of your Thought Adjuster in everything you do and think. This connotes communion with your own Inner Spirit and loyalty to the way of love and service which the Spirit will suggest. Your Thought Adjuster is your source and authority regarding the will of God for your life. This focus on “Spirit assisted thinking” was suggested by two references in The Urantia Book. One of these is found at UB 1213:1 /110:7.6. It says that few mortals are real thinkers and this is a great handicap in reception of the Thought Adjuster’s spiritual pleas translated from the universal broadcasts of love proceeding from the Father. Spirit assisted thinking requires us to spiritually develop and discipline our minds to the point of favorable connection with our Thought Adjuster. Our animal mind is almost completely dominated by chemical and electrical forces inherent in our physical natures. Therefore, we must train our minds to control these forces in order to be receptive to Thought Adjuster leading. Adjusters are constantly communicating to us. It is our failure to connect consciously which prevents real thinking. Our Adjusters long to make direct contact with our conscious, choice making mortal mind and they rejoice when they are successful. 

Reality Response 

The second key reference is found at UB pp. 191-192 / 16:6. It says there is inherent in cosmic mind a quality which can be called the “reality responses”. It is what saves will creatures from being helpless victims of the assumptions of science, philosophy and religion. Cosmic mind unfailingly responds on three levels of universe reality.
  1. Reality domain of the physical senses – differentiation of the factual and the nonfactual – reflective conclusions based on cosmic response. 
  2. Reality domain of morals in the philosophical realm – the recognition of relative right and wrong.
  3. Reality domain of religious experience – personal realization of divine fellowship – recognition of spirit values – awareness of sonship with God.
These cosmic responses are innate in cosmic mind and the experience of living never fails to develop these cosmic intuitions. It is sad however that so few persons on Urantia enjoy cultivating these qualities of courageous and independent cosmic thinking incorporating reality responses into their thinking processes. Spirit assisted thinking consciously subjects thoughts to these reality tests by sensing for reality or nonreality.

Religion of Jesus 

High gear spiritual performances await the new revelation of the religious life of Jesus and the more general acceptance of the real religion of Jesus. UB 2086:3 / 195:10.4. I presume the new revelation of Jesus’ religious life is delivered by the Urantia Book. The UB says Jesus’ personal religion was religiously following the leading of his Thought Adjuster. We can look to Jesus’ practices as our model for spirit assisted thinking and for spiritual living. We have two good descriptions of Jesus’ technique of spirit assisted thinking. At UB 2089:0 /196:0.10 there is a list of what prayer was to Jesus. That list tells us how Jesus used prayer to work out answers to his life problems. At UB 1774-1777 / 160:1-2 the philosopher, Rodan, describes how Jesus used his contact with his Inner Spirit to do real thinking. Rodan was a Greek philosopher from Alexandria, Egypt who spent weeks carefully observing Jesus and learning his practices and his teachings from Jesus’ apostles. He was truly a great intellect. His writings have been lost but the Urantia Book recovers his observations about Jesus from the celestial records of our spiritual family. At UB 1774-1777 / 160:1-2 Rodan says he learned the greatest of all methods of problem solving from Jesus. That method was Jesus’ practice of the isolation of worshipful meditation which was done as follows: Jesus went off by himself. He communed with the Father. He appropriated spiritual energy for the solution of the higher problems of a moral and spiritual nature. He thereby gathered strength and wisdom for the ordinary conflicts of living. Rodan observed that this worshipful problem-solving practice brings: Relaxation that renews the mind. Illumination (spiritual insight) which inspires the soul. Courage to face your problems bravely. Self-understanding which obliterates debilitating fear. Consciousness of union with divinity which equips you with the assurance enabling you to dare to be like God. [Consciousness of union sounds a lot more intimate and a lot more permanent than just consciousness of contact.] Rodan also observed that the relaxation of this practice of spiritual communion has wonderful consequences:
  1. Relief of tension.
  2. Removal of conflicts.
  3. Augmentation of the resources of personality [The resources of personality unify spirit, mind and body and enable us to make value choices.] 
As Rodan analyzed it, Jesus’ style of meditation combines meditation and relaxation. Meditation makes the contact of mind with spirit. Relaxation determines the capacity for spiritual receptivity. From the philosopher’s point of view, the meditative interchange of strength for weakness, courage for fear, the will of God for the mind of self – constitutes worship.  It becomes more urgent as society becomes more complex for God-knowing individuals to form protective habitual practices to conserve and augment their spiritual energies. Jesus’ style of prayer / meditation / worship is a good model of how to do this.  In his prayer time Jesus engaged in solitary surveys of the problems of living and sought new stores of wisdom and energy for meeting the many demands of social service. Jesus’ prayer practice quickens and deepens the supreme purpose of living by subjecting the total personality [everything you are] to the consequences of contacting divinity. In his prayer / meditation / worship practice, Jesus grasped for new and better methods of adjusting himself to the ever-changing situations of living existence. He effected those vital reconstructions and readjustments of his personal attitudes which are essential to enhanced insight into everything worthwhile and real and he did all this with an eye to consistency with God’s will. Rodan was really impressed.

Jesus’ Use of Prayer as a Spirit Assisted Thinking Mechanism

The following is the list from UB 2089 /196:.0.10 of what prayer was to Jesus. It pretty clearly identifies what topics Jesus was communing about and suggests what he was saying in his prayers. His prayer life was the highest of spirit assisted thinking. These are at the upper edge of what I am able to grasp but if I read them slowly, repeatedly and reflectively, with intent to really understand and participate in each statement, I find I can understand them and can even create and enjoy examples of that application of prayer. But, I have to ask the Spirit a lot of clarifying questions in the process.

To Jesus Prayer Could be Any or All of These:

Sincere expression of spiritual attitude Declaration of soul loyalty Recital of personal devotion Expression of thanksgiving Avoidance of emotional tension Prevention of conflict Exaltation of intellection Ennoblement of desire Vindication of moral decision Enrichment of thought Invigoration of higher inclinations Consecration of impulse Clarification of viewpoint Declaration of faith Transcendental surrender of will  Sublime assertion of confidence  Revelation of courage  Proclamation of discovery  Confession of supreme devotion Validation of consecration  Technique for adjustment of difficulties Mighty mobilization of soul powers to withstand all human tendencies toward selfishness, evil, and sin  Jesus’ style of worship / communion eliminates prejudice by completely opening to spirit and God’s way and by applying the virtues of God to his considerations. Prejudice is having your mind made up about someone or something before hearing the evidence and even regardless of the evidence. Eliminating or at least avoiding prejudice is important to spiritual thinking because prejudice blinds the soul to the recognition of truth. The only way to eliminate your prejudice is by sincere devotion of the soul to the adoration of a cause that is all embracing and all inclusive of one’s fellows. The kingdom / family of God is where the spirit of God leads the soul of man. It is the will of God in action and experience. It is service, love, forgiveness, tolerance, forbearance and much more. Extending the family of God is the worthy cause that is all inclusive. Extending and empowering the family of God is the adventure God invites us to join. It is God’s fond desire for us to be part of his adventure.  Avoidance is a temporary patch on prejudice. One method of avoidance of prejudice is to admit that it might be involved and resolve to guard against its effects.

Exercises to Experience and Practice Spirit Assisted Thinking 

Relaxation and meditation technique used by Jesus and observed and recommended by Rodan.
  1. Relax by being mindful of your breathing. As you inhale medium sized breaths, imagine that you are breathing in spiritual strength, vitality and optimism. As you breathe out, imagine that you are exhaling preoccupation, pessimism and physical exhaustion. When your mind is calm and focused, proceed.
  2. Identify the joy or concern you wish to visit with Father about. Describe for Father the significance of the choices involved in the matter you are considering.
  3. Carry out both sides of an imaginary conversation with Father.
  4. The objectives in this are to make it easier for your Adjuster to register ideas in your conscious mind and for you to recognize reality responses and to use them both in making decisions. 
Remember that the voice of the Adjuster is still, small, suggestive, and not powerful or demanding. So, permit the silence to linger and listen into it for your Adjuster’s quiet responses. These are likely to be questions which call for decisions based on values, meanings, and truth. Drift back and forth between prayer / discussion and worship / admiration.

Contemplation of What Prayer Was to Jesus

Relax, as in the preceeding exercise, and leisurely contemplate the individual statements of what prayer was to Jesus. Ask for understanding of how to use prayer in each of the ways Jesus used it. Ask for insights. Talk to Father. Ask him questions. Restate whatever relevant thoughts come to you. Be sure to listen. Thank Jesus for revealing each purpose, use and value of prayer. Thank him for his bestowal and constant present ministry. Discuss, adore, and pursue. Drift back and forth between prayer / discussion and worship / admiration. Meditate on what prayer was to Jesus and how prayer can serve you in that way.  The term “Worshipful Problem Solving” is descriptive of this process. It means drifting back and forth between high prayer of sincere conversation with our Father about things that concern us and contemplation of the wonderful qualities and behavior of our loving, merciful, generous, forgiving, gracious, tolerant, faithful, and constant Father. The result is a mixture of thanksgiving and prayer for spiritual consequences mixed with worshipful adoration of God’s goodness. 

Direct Approach to Adjuster Communication

Thinking assisted by one’s thought Adjuster is probably less likely to be conscious because we need a fairly high level of spiritual achievement and personality balance to be able to handle such contact. So, the spirit shelters us until we are mature enough to maintain our balance during such conscious Thought Adjuster contact. But you might be ready and not know it. So here is a suggestion for direct approach to your Adjuster. At UB 1213:5 / 110:7.10 we can see part of what an Adjuster said to his human associate about their relationship. It seems safe to assume that your Adjuster would say similar things to you. Your Adjuster voluntarily assumed the task of leading you into realization and understanding of God’s love, mercy, tolerance, inclusiveness, generosity and other noble virtues. In short, to make God known to you. So here is what the Adjuster said, broken down into discrete comments for ease of consideration:
  1. You are the subject of my solicitous devotion.
  2. I would never intend to over chastise or discourage you.
  3. I plead that you more faithfully give me your sincere cooperation.
  4. Please more cheerfully endure the tasks of my emplacement.
  5. More faithfully carry out the program of my arrangement.
  6. More patiently go through the trials of my selection.
  7. More persistently and cheerfully tread the path of my choosing.
  8. I ask you more humbly to receive credit accruing as a result of my ceaseless endeavors.
  9. I bestow on you the supreme devotion and affection of a divine spirit.
  10. I will function with wisdom and power until the very end, until the last earth struggle is over.
  11. I will be true to my personality trust.
  12. I exhort you to survive. Do not disappoint me. Do not deprive me of the reward of my patient and intense struggle.
  13. On the human will my achievement of personality depends. 
Now here is the exercise. Assume that what the Thought Adjuster said above was said to you. I want you to proceed through all the Adjuster’s comments one by one. Relax and meditate on each statement and request for cooperation. Are you ready to make a commitment to your Adjuster regarding his requests? If that is not comfortable, reflect on why not. Ask your mind and your Adjuster to provide insights and help to remedy your withholds and enable your commitments. Remember, your Adjuster and Father’s entire Universe are interested in helping you master your resistances to spiritual thinking and spiritual living. They know you have resistances and do not judge you for them. You can be absolutely honest with Father. There is no punishment for your imperfections.

Exchange Your Mind for the Mind of Jesus

At UB 553:7 / 48:6.16 “Even on Urantia…” we are told “The angels teach the everlasting truth: ‘If your own mind does not serve you well, you can exchange it for the mind of Jesus of Nazareth, who always serves you well’.” How you do that, what happens, and whether you notice a change are all interesting questions to me. I am sorry to say that my experience with this approach is limited and very recent. I am “sorry to say” because my limited and very recent experience of asking for and opening to the mind of Jesus has had surprisingly positive results. Invocation of this change in thinking required nothing special, just a straight-forward and sincere statement of “Yes, I would like to experience exchanging for the mind of Jesus.” The result was immediate and noticeable. It was less like new thoughts and more like the experience of being joined by a beloved companion. It was feeling rather than thought. I am not transformed by having the foreign thoughts of another mind. Instead, what seems to be my own thinking took on a notable advance in optimism and cheerfulness. My trust in the success of God’s will was enhanced. When I think about other people, my attitude is positive and generous. I care for them and I am interested in looking for the goodness in them. This feels like, in cooperation with spirit, there are real possibilities to be achieved. I feel calm, patient, and tolerant. I feel an absence of irritation. “If your mind doesn’t serve you well” doesn’t really require a completely faulty ability to reason. It includes your mind failing to experience truths. It includes even spotty failures among startling achievements. There is a lot which even a capable mind fails or even respectfully refuses to experience. That too is mind not serving you well and can be remedied by exchanging your mind for the mind of Jesus.  These changes have persisted now for a few days and they are reinforced each time I affirm that I want my conscious mind to benefit from the mind of Jesus. Wow! This exchanging my mind for the mind of Jesus is a wonderful, worshipful experience. It could be transforming if allowed to run continuously. It moves in and puts down its own connections quickly. End Back to Top

Personal Spirituality

By Kaye Cooper  From the Joyful living Program
Spirituality is the process we follow to discover our values, grasp meanings and develop good, strong and loyal character.  I had better repeat that because I probably took you by surprise.  Spirituality is the process we follow to discover our values, grasp meanings and develop good, strong and loyal character.  Personal spirituality is the individually directed path each person follows in attending to her own spiritual needs.  There lives within each of our minds a perfect spirit who is there to guide us to perfection by enlightening our experience with insights into meaning.  It is entirely our choice whether to pay attention or not. The most exciting adventure of our mortal lives is to explore our inner experience of the spirit within to find the insights of Spirit, and to bring that influence into our lives progressively so that Spirit’s love saturates everything we think, feel or do.  As we progress in expressing the spirit’s loving nature, the spirit’s courage, integrity, sincerity, fairness, and compassion are reflected in the way we treat others.  This way of life is a self-discovering and self-creating adventure.  We begin with no knowledge of the goal, no knowledge of the techniques of discovery and no knowledge of the certainty of success.  As we succeed in living the Spirit-reflecting life, we come to recognize that we are becoming the person we have dreamed of being by means of our own decisions and loyal expression of our values.  We are fulfilling our own deepest yearnings of what we wish to be. What does it mean to be spiritual?  It is to lead our lives out of a spiritual core—seeking and following inner wisdom.  Inner wisdom is not just applied experience.  Experience teaches us the rational cause and effect patterns that improve our decision-making.  But what we learn from experience is lifted above knowledge of cause and effect into truth, values and meanings by insight.  Insight is the sense from within ourselves about what is true and right—not just what is factually accurate, but what is true, what harmonizes with our inmost convictions and what is consistent with reality as we know it should be.  

To Be Spiritual

Spiritual living means to encourage growth in ourselves beyond the physical and intellectual.  To be spiritual is to move beyond living life to clothe, feed, and shelter ourselves; to move beyond using our intellects to solve problems and direct our material achievements.  To be spiritual is to live beyond the goal of understanding the rules of the material world around us and manipulating that world to our benefit.   To be spiritual is to live the adventure of becoming morally the best we can imagine—and then imagining farther to even better and higher selves.  Spirituality is to become the ideals and values that we see and admire.  It is to discover who we really are and who we can become.  To be spiritual is to appreciate beauty—physical and emotional—to recognize truth, that which is God’s will and way, and live it, and to become good—and progressively better. To grow in spirituality is to let go of the weaknesses, failures and inadequacies we recognize in ourselves so that we may grasp and adopt higher values and meanings.  The human condition requires imperfection so that we can choose to improve.  We will not destroy our faults.  We will outgrow them, leaving our faults behind; discarded, outgrown and eventually forgotten.

Tools to be Used Daily

We call our program Joyful Living.  Joyful Living provides you with the tools to pursue your personal spirituality—tools to be used daily.  If you put the tools to work, you will evolve and grow toward a very achievable goal. Joyful Living will help you to reach within yourself to make contact with your Spirit Within.  We each have within us a source of spiritual insight and revelation that speaks constantly to us of unselfishness and the urge to help others.  This program will provide you with easy techniques to open yourself to awareness of these insights.  

The Spiritual Family

All of us who pursue the adventure of seeking the wisdom within us and living the spiritual life form a spiritual family. We are, after all, children of Spirit.  This family is based not on our genetics, but on our choices to live out of our spiritual selves.  There is a type of magnetism that emanates from a person who has fallen in love with higher values and is on the path of growth. It is more than our recognition of each other.  It is a divine mystery we are blessed to experience.  The love that develops as the family members recognize each other and grow in relationship is an amazing thing to experience.  It is a love that feeds us with spiritual food and nurtures our spiritual growth.  The love we give and the love we receive becomes our spiritual life-blood.   Because we are engaged in growing spiritually, all members of the family strive to treat each other well.  We encourage and support each other in our efforts.  We take great joy in the successes of each other.  And each person we encounter is a potential brother or sister in this spiritual family.  Each person we meet is full of spiritual potential waiting to be discovered and unleashed.  And how gratifying when we are privileged to help someone to discover the spiritual potential within themselves and join the spiritual family.  Sometimes there are vast differences between family members.  As brothers and sisters, we can enjoy and appreciate these differences as a part of a master plan to enable each of us to have special gifts we can offer to the family.  We brothers and sisters love and value each other despite the differences—sometimes we even appreciate and enjoy the differences. End Back to Top

One Central Truth

We are All Children of God

By Kaye Cooper
You began as a twinkle in the eye of God. God wanted a child. God dreamed about this precious little one. And loved you before you were even conceived. (God loves you.) God planned for you and made provisions for you. God provided a nursery and furnished it in beauty. And one day, you were spiritually conceived. (Conception) God sent a living part of Godself to live within your human identity and to conceive a new spirit being. (The Thought Adjuster indwells you.) That is who you are: the spirit baby of God. Relax for a moment. Close your eyes if you like. Imagine Mother God smiling and gently lifting you out of the cradle. She cuddles you close, slowly rocks you back and forth, and hums a lullaby. And as she rocks you, she dreams of who you will become. It is just that intimate and warm, the way God loves you. You are God’s precious baby. (pause) You may open your eyes. This is an essential truth as I understand it: God is your spirit parent, and God loves you – individually. Your Heavenly Mother/Father loves you with an infinite love (and you can experience that truth personally). Your parent, God, loves you. This is a central truth in our relationship with God – the one strategic and essential experience. That truth which changes all of life. That primary experience from which all other spiritual experience flows. Reflect with me on ways you may experience God’s love for you. There are times when you will have “aha!” moments in life when your mind is illuminated with wisdom and understanding. At other times you will feel an intuition which leads you to choose the higher alternative. You feel a rightness and satisfaction when you choose a higher way. You will more and more feel loved by a warm, parental spirit who lives within you. As you grow, you will recognize the signs in your life that you are spiritually fostered, provided for and taken care of. Because you know about the universe plan for your future, you will begin to recognize in that plan a parent’s loving care. In grief and distress, you will come to feel comforted and supported. I’m sure that you recognize God’s love in the actions of some people in your life already. Faith is the positive leading of the spiritual part of you: The Thought Adjuster. That urge to believe and trust is an endowment of your Inner Spirit. Any of the experiences I just listed (and many others) could be the Adjuster’s leading. This leading of the Adjuster within you is real. It is not a figment of your imagination. It is not simply a product of your active mind. You are a tiny spirit growing and becoming recognizable as this child of God. But more than that, faith is also your choosing to trust that leading of your spirit self. From your trust in what the Spirit leads you to believe arises action and attitudes on your part that are consistent with the Spirit’s leading. When you believe that something real is going on in these experiences, you are exercising faith. Appreciating and giving thanks for these experiences is your faith in action, too. When you try to make your choices in keeping with the way you think you are led, that’s faith. Notice that I did not say, “in keeping with the way you are led.” Sometimes we mistake God’s leading. But honest errors get counted as faith, too. When you take the initiative to ask for God’s input into your decisions, that’s a faith-step. When you incorporate the insights of your “aha!” moments into your life, you take that action because of your maturing faith. When you appreciate the love expressed by others and understand God as the source, that’s faith. The result of this faith-relationship is a growing sense of the reality of God as a loving, reliable parent. You are increasingly convinced that God is real, that God loves you as a child and that you are special to God. (I realize: God loves me as God’s child.) Folded into that sense of the reality of God are three other effects: First, realizing that God loves you as a child also carries with it the opportunity to accept God’s forgiveness. When you first make the realization that God loves you, there is often an associated pain in remembering some of your thoughts and behavior. God’s love is such that God didn’t hold those things against you in the first place. You are a child in God’s eyes and children are expected to make mistakes. But you may feel a need to be forgiven. So, we speak of accepting God’s forgiveness. (I accept God’s forgiveness.) There is a catch. While God has already forgiven you, you can not experience God’s forgiveness until you forgive your fellows. A second result of coming to realize God’s love for you is that you come to trust in God’s watch-care and guidance. (I recognize: God watches over me) Think for a moment about trusting in God’s watch-care. Physically this is a dangerous world. Very unpleasant things happen to people all the time. It is not a natural act to trust God to watch over you even in a spiritual sense. It is our faith – our response to the Adjuster’s assurance within us – that convinces us that God watches over us. And as we have that faith, we begin to recognize the results of God’s watch-care in our lives. The third thing which unfolds from experiencing and accepting God’s love for you is this: You yearn to be like God (i.e., you wholeheartedly want and honestly seek God’s guidance.) (I yearn to be like God.) You probably anticipated with excitement becoming an adult for the very reason that you could make your own decisions. It’s not a natural act to voluntarily become the child again, to ask for God’s advice, and then to take that advice! But that is what will happen… and must happen. Faith is not natural. Our material, animal nature has no such characteristic. We have faith because it is the gift of God. It is a spiritual import. This sense inside us comes from that very spark of God which makes us a spirit child. Faith is what brings you to this point of spiritual conception. The Adjuster’s love and your acceptance of it as real gives life to the spirit child. You are born of the spirit, born into the family of God. (Birth) You are born because you have become God conscious. Becoming God conscious is not an intellectual understanding of the fact that God created you. Becoming God conscious is something for which there is no word in any human language. THE URANTIA BOOK describes it as a sense, a feeling, intuition, or an experience – and says that the phrase “God-consciousness” is the closest the revelators could come in English. (UB 1130:5 / 103:1.6) This faith experience of realizing your place as a beloved spiritual child of a wonderful spiritual parent is a great mystery. It takes place at the very fringes of your consciousness and eludes your limited language. The UB says when you become conscious of having found God, your soul experiences “an indescribable restlessness of triumph in [that] discovery.” (UB 1121 :6 / 102:3.4) After being born into the spiritual family, there follows a growing up. (Growing Up) That is a very prosaic way of saying that you are transformed and progressively shaped by spirit from a newborn infant (in a spiritual sense) into a toddler and ultimately into the spiritual adult you are to become. Let’s look for a moment at this process of growing up spiritually:
    1. First of all, you come to recognize others as your brothers and sisters. (I recognize brothers & sisters) Intellectually, it is obvious that if you are God’s child and I am God’s child, then we are siblings, children of the same parent, a part of the same family. But you experience this truth through feeling and insight. You come to feel kin to others, first to those who share your understanding of and love for God, but later to those who have not yet discovered their spiritual family. Your insight has to do with how you perceive others. When you look at others you begin to see not an enemy or a nuisance, not someone to take advantage of or to avoid. You see someone with problems and weaknesses like you. And as you grow, you begin to see someone you want to get to know, someone you could learn to care for, someone whose welfare you already care about.
    1. Another result of God-consciousness is an “indescribable restlessness of triumph in discovery” which impels you to seek loving service. You have a welling-up of eternal goodness within your soul. Service allows that goodness to overflow into the lives of others (Service urges). Urges to be of service to these newly discovered brothers and sisters bubble up within you. When I say, “newly discovered,” I am not just talking about when you first realize that we are all God’s children. I am talking about the discovery each day of another person to love. Loving men and women happens one person at a time. And as you come to love a person, there bubbles up within you a desire to serve them.
  1. A third outgrowth of your faith-grasp of being a child of God is your love for God. You begin to feel an overflowing love for the spiritual Mother/Father who loves you so much and blesses you so thoroughly. God is so loving, so loyal, so dependable, so constant, that you run out of words. And your appreciation goes beyond words into a realm where your voice is silenced, and your mind is overwhelmed (in the very nicest way). This is worship. (Worship.) The UB describes it as “a natural and spontaneous reaction to the recognition of the Father’s matchless personality and because of his lovable nature and adorable attributes.” (UB 65:5 / 5:3.3)
And eventually worship, recognizing others as brothers and sisters, and service urges have an effect on your behavior. As you worship God, each day you become more devoted, more dedicated, more steadfast in your love and appreciation. And you want to contribute to God’s purposes, God’s goals. Your prayer life becomes focused on seeking God’s will. As you come to understand God’s way, you are able to discern what his way would be in the various moments of your life. You do God’s will as best you understand it. (Do God’s will) And that means that you serve your brothers and sisters. It’s really a pretty spontaneous process. Because you see other people as brothers and sisters, you open yourself to relationship with God’s children. And because you are feeling these urges to serve, you follow through—you serve them. (Serve) You don’t just want good, you do good.

The inevitable result of sharing the inner life with God is action. 

You are growing up spiritually. Becoming more and more like the spiritual parent who gave you life, the one who nurtures and teaches you. The one who envisioned who you are and who you will become, in the future. The parent who delights in every new word you learn and each new step you take. When this happy parent sees you acting just like Daddy, he loves it!! What a joy you are to God. All of this would not be complete if I did not mention the repercussions that flow into your life from growing up in this manner.
  1. Increasing joy. (Joy) Spiritual joy surprises you. It turns up in the most unexpected places. The first place I recall recognizing this kind of joy was in the beauty of nature. One day I took a good look and realized that colors were clearer, light was brighter, air felt purer, movement made my heart sing. There was joy in every season, not just spring! There is joy in simply living one more day.
  2. Expansion of your capacity to love. (Love) Feeling loved feeds your ability to love. Loving and serving also enables your love to grow. You find it easier with each day to really see people, to understand them, to come to love them.
  3. Closer and closer identification with God within. You are less and less the material creature you started this mortal life as. You are becoming the spiritual creature who was born of faith. As a faith child, you have an eternal and limitless future. (Eternal Life) You may once have thought that you were a material creature having a spiritual experience. But more and more, you are a spiritual being having a material experience.
This all flows from acceptance of the one central set of truths: Your spirit Parent, God, loves you—individually, has a grand destiny planned for you and has in place an elaborate education system to train you to assume more and more responsibility in his family.  End Back to Top

Jesus’ Qualities and Values

Values Jesus Displayed

  1. Love
  2. Patience
  3. Compassion
  4. Good cheer
  5. Optimism
  6. Beauty
  7. Steadfastness
  8. Integrity
  9. Courage
  10. Wisdom
  11. Truth
  12. Friendship
  13. Faith 
  14. Commitment
  15. Creativity
  16. Godlikeness
  17. Stamina
  18. Enthusiasm
  19. Peace
  20. Tolerance
  21. Spiritual power
  22. Confidence
  23. Empathy
  24. Reason
  25. Adventure
  26. Affection
  27. Mercy
  28. Understanding
  29. Perfection
  30. Trustfulness
  31. Generosity
  32. Encouragement
  33. Balance
  34. Sincerity
  35. Discernment
  36. Reverence
  37. Light
  38. Honesty
  39. Honor
  40. Forbearance

Jesus Qualities












Immune to disappointment

Impervious to persecution

Untouced by failure

Confident in people

















Fruites of the divine spirit..Gifts of the Spirit Within

Loving service

Unselfish devotion

Courageous loyalty

Sincere fairness

Enlightened honesty

Undying hope

Confiding trust

Merciful ministry

Unfailing goodness

Forgiving tolerance

Enduring peace

Spiritual weapons… Gifts of Jesus / Michael

Unfailing forgiveness

Matchless good will

Abounding love

To overcome evil with good

To vanquish hate by love

To destroy fear with a courageous and living faith in truth

To be active and positive in your ministry of mercy and manifestations of love

To forgive personal injuries

To keep sweet in the midst of the gravest injustice

To remian unmoved in the face of appalling danger

To challenge the evils of hate and anger by the fearless acts of love and forbearance

The good will of love and mutual trust

The Gift of Faith

By Kaye Cooper
Arlington, Texas

I have had a hard time understanding just what it means to have faith in my brothers and sisters. I am not a particularly naive person. I learn from experience, and that includes learning who I can trust and who has failed to exhibit himself worthy of trust. As an adult with these valuable lesapostlessons under my belt, I came face to face two or three years ago with the fact that Jesus urged his followers to have faith in one another. (1574:5) It stopped me in my tracks, and I began to ponder what he could mean. Was I supposed to allow unscrupulous people to take advantage of me repeatedly in fulfillment of a rule of conduct? Was I to ignore the obvious evidence of human behavior and become naive? Was I supposed to disregard a person’s apparent bad habits and unreliability and trust him to be and do things that are apparently not a part of his behavior pattern? 

As these questions plagued me, I did what I have found to be the most effective thing in such circumstances. I prayed. Not so much the traditional and specific request in a designated prayer time (although I did that too), but more the investment of my soul’s desire in an intense longing for an answer. When I ask in that way, I do indeed receive. Over the years, insights have occurred, some small, some more outstanding. It is only now that I feel enough of a start on understanding to be able to share some thoughts in writing. 

A Change of Attitude 

 To begin with, having faith in someone is not a rule of conduct that one can adhere to. Faith comes from one’s sincere feelings. It cannot be “play-acted.” We can’t force ourselves to have faith in our brothers because we know Jesus said we should. We have to behave out of whatever level of faith we are capable of at the moment. It is very comforting to understand that our ideals of faith are always going to outstrip our current level of faith. Any change in us toward having more faith is a change in attitude. That sincere attitude change results in a change in our actions. Rather than attempt to force ourselves to change behavior, we can more profitably contribute to this growth by praying for a change of attitude, an enlargement of understanding, and an enhancement of faith-power. We can read, think about, and discuss with friends what it means to have faith in others. We can attempt to perceive what it would be for the individual situation we are in at the moment. We can want with all our heart and soul to grow in our trust and faith of others. 

Jesus was not naive. He extended his faith in Judas with full knowledge of the danger he was courting and the odds against success. Naivete would have said, “Everything will work out as I want it to. I just know Judas won’t betray my trust.” But I think Jesus said, “I know that there is a great likelihood that Judas is incapable of responding to my teaching and my relationship with him, but he is worth the risk. I will trust him to respond and grow.” 

Much of Jesus’ expenditure of faith in men resulted in salvaged mortals. As an example, very few would have expected the tax collector Matthew to be interested in or to respond to Jesus, yet Jesus’ faith in him was very successful. Jesus stretched his faith to the limit of reasonability in Judas, and Judas failed to live up to Jesus’ faith in him. (But perhaps that was not the end of the story. Perhaps Judas did respond and grow. Perhaps Judas too has been saved). Faith Is Active. 

At any rate, faith in others is not simply a trusting naivete. It involves seeking to understand the motives of others and consistently looking for and commenting on the best in them. Jesus saw the possibilities in the two prostitutes who propositioned him at Corinth. He saw that their motives were not low, that desperation had driven them to that life. He had faith that they had the capacity and soul desire for growth. The result was two redeemed lives. (pp. 1472-3) Faith in our brothers involves a trust in their ability to grow. We tend to look at people and situations as static. If we project change, it is on the basis of the characteristics which people are displaying at the moment. When one is surrounded by stagnant people, perhaps that is a reasonable expectation. 

Now that my life has become filled with alive and growing people, I am constantly amazed. Situations are always turning out better than I expect. My experience with spiritually growing people justifies relatively optimistic faith in what they can be and become. People repeatedly grow beyond reasonable predictions – before my very eyes! My faith can’t seem to keep up with reality-or maybe my faith in them even causes some of the growth that surprises me. If we think back on situations in which others have had faith in us, we can recognize the effect of one person’s faith in another. Faith in us causes us to want to live up to that faith, inspires in us a belief that we can be more than we are, spurs us to do our best by a sense of responsibility (In the best meaning of that word). Jesus valued people so much and had so much faith in their ability to grow and their sincere desire to do so, that he spent himself in serving them. As a result, people all around him became more than they were, more than they had ever hoped to be. 

Faith Errors 

Some of the confusion about having faith in others may stem from two easy-to-make errors. One of these errors is to confuse faith in growth with expectations. To have faith in another’s capacity and desire for growth is a different matter from expecting that a person will behave in a specific way in a particular situation at a definite time. Someone may on occasion fulfill such defined expectations, but more often the behavior of another person does not fit our specified demands. The temptation then is to view that as a failure-even to assume that having faith in people does not do any good (does not have the desired results of getting them to act as we wish). 

Even growing people are not going to grow according to our expectations for their growth. Our faith has to expand beyond those limitations. This type of situation also involves a second misunderstanding about faith. When we have expended faith in our brothers, perhaps time, and again we may eventually come to feel that our faith was wasted or that we were a fool for having faith in that person. Neither of those is true. Our faith is never wasted, nor are we a fool for having it. We may, because of our immature status in the universe, bestow faith in unwise ways; but, after all, everything we do is less than perfect. We can expend our faith and learn and grow from our experiences. Or we can withhold our faith for fear of making an error – and stagnate. We are responsible for acting as wisely, sincerely, and lovingly as we are capable of, and we can leave the out working of those acts to God. 

There are many possibilities for success in giving faith where one’s expectations are not met and one’s faith seems to have been in vain. Some examples: 

  • There may be benefits for our brother which we cannot see. 
  • There may be benefits to someone else. 
  • The positive results may be delayed. 
  • This may be one in a series of similar events which will eventually bear fruit. 
  • We may have been too ambitious, too specific, or inaccurate in our expectations. 
  • We may be the primary beneficiaries of the situation. 

Faith Wisdom 

While accepting·that our application of faith is going to be less than perfect, we will want to seek ways to make it as wise as possible. Wisdom indicates that allowing unscrupulous people to take advantage of us or anyone else is in no one’s highest interest. Jesus seemed to distinguish between those who were malicious and those who were making sincere errors. The money changers in the temple are an example of the malicious and sinful. Jesus used force against the money changers to drive them out. The man beating his wife is an example of someone in sincere error. Jesus approached the man to ascertain his motives and what events had led up to this extreme action. He uplifted the man’s understanding of his relationship with his wife and left the man in the faith that he would grow beyond his violent reactions. (pp. 1888-91; 1470-71) 

Even when the situation involves error and not maliciousness, we are not supposed to disregard a person’s apparent bad habits and unreliability and trust him to be and do things that are apparently not part of his behavior patterns. It is our desire that the faith we have in him will empower him to grow. We hope he will live up to a trust placed in him or that failure to do so will stimulate his growth. To have faith that a person be or do something too far beyond his present reach dooms him to failure without even the benefit of learning from that failure. For example, delegation of responsibility involves faith, but it must be dispensed wisely. It is a pattern of the universe to delegate responsibility as soon as maturity warrants. We can more nearly follow this pattern if we watch for the signs of readiness for the responsibility. It is the fourteen-year-old we trust with the lawn mower, not the four year old. Observing the signs of readiness is a wise thing to do. It does not mean one lacks faith in one’s brother. 

We can benefit in our faith-wisdom by recognizing that faith is undermined by fear. It is our animal nature to fear the unknown (and faith always includes the unknown). We have the difficult job of balancing our judgment of readiness with our instinctive fear of the results of taking a faith step. Knowing that we have spiritual help in making our decisions is an extremely important remedy for the dilemma of choosing wisely while being pulled by fear on one side and desire to live by faith on the other. 

The Source of the Faith Gift 

It occurs to me that faith in our brothers is also faith in our Father. We can be absolutely confident that he has a plan for each of us, that we can and will grow. We can be certain that we all have helpers on every side and in every situation whose primary aim is to help us grow. We can depend upon him not only to safeguard us spiritually but to guide us constantly. We can step out over the chasm of the unknown, utterly supported by God’s promises: that we can and will grow to be like him, that all things work together for the good of those who love him. It is these assurances – our faith in our Father – which enables us to extend the gift of faith to our brothers. 


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Rendezvous with the Great Spirit 

First completed 1-8-2000  By William Cooper


The following activity invites you to use your imagination spiritually. It consists of a short story followed by five minutes of music. The object is to follow the suggestions in the story and then to imagine what the music suggests. Now sit comfortably. You may close your eyes or leave them open, whichever permits you to imagine more effectively. Let me warn you of three things: First; The story uses a Native American theme but neither the story nor the music is of Native American origin. Second; There is a long silence for reflection at the end of the music but I will guide you out of the silence and will tell you when to open your eyes. Third; The music I use is powerful and assertive. Some people expect dreamy, floating music for meditation. This music describes (without words) a significant event in the story. This whole story and music process of listening and imagining will take about twelve minutes so get in a comfortable position and relax your body and your mind. Breathe deeply and relax, and again. 

The Great Spirit Speaks 

Long, long ago there was an elderly Native American medicine woman, a spiritual person among her people. She sensed that she was approaching the end of her life and was looking forward to going to live with the Great Spirit. So she called her favorite grandson to her and said” Grandson, I need you to help me. I want to go to the high place to speak with the Great Spirit; up where it is so quiet I can hear the music of the stars and the deep musical voice of the Great Spirit and his sparkling companions and where my spirit can be heard calling to go with Him.” Because she was frail, he assembled a frame of poles and buffalo robes for his grandmother to ride on, placed it across the back of his finest pony, helped his grandmother on, and covered her with a buffalo robe to keep her warm as they ascended in the evening chill. He took her through the village, past the cooking fires and the fragrance of their smoke, past the whispering brook, through the grove of pine trees with their sweet scent, up the wide grassy way, past the great red boulders, up the steep trail where you can see your breath. Near the top of the mountain, she tells him to stop and says,” My son we will meet the Great Spirit here.” He helps her down from the frame carriage. She stands near the great rock behind her. Looking into the night sky with brilliant stars overhead, she lifts her arms to the sky and stands this way silently for minutes – and then she speaks lovingly” Oh Great Spirit, I have lived a long life. So much joy and sorrow, and through it all you have always been my guide and companion. And now I ask you to come to me once again with power and clarity. Permit my spirit to speak with yours. Let the music of your presence and the beauty of your many generous promises flood over me and transform me. Yes, Great Spirit, come.” 

[Play The Oh of Pleasure” from the album Deep Breakfast by Ray Lynch. Start the music as the word “come” is spoken in the phrase “yes, Great Spirit, come”.] 


[After music and 1 to 2 minutes of silence] 

For the rest of his life, grandson was often asked to tell the story around the evening

campfire of the night the Great Spirit came with clouds of sparkling followers, (pause) all 

speaking in a musical language that only grandmother could understand. 

And that is the story of grandmother’s rendezvous with the Great Spirit. 

Revised 3-17-2001 


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Feed Your Soul

By Kaye Cooper

Jesus said, “Feed your soul.? What do you think that means? How do you feed your soul?” 

Feeding your soul is prayerful contemplation of beauty goodness and truth. Contemplation of higher values such as loyalty, friendship, forgiveness, patience, tolerance, etc. all qualify. It is a process of thinking about and choosing elevated concepts of morality (what is right or wrong) and moral behavior. You water your soul by opening it to inspiration from spirit. You feed it with moral processing of experience.

As I pondered the injunction to feed your soul, it occurred to me that Jesus was the bread of life. What nourishes our souls is seeing the goodness of God lived out in our world. The ultimate revelation of God was Jesus. So, recalling the way Jesus revealed the goodness of God in his life would feed our souls. I think meditating on the qualities that Jesus displayed when he walked this earth would also feed our souls. So let’s try that now. Here is a list of some of the qualities that Jesus displayed. You may think of others. Choose one from this list or one of your own to use in this activity. 

Consider the list of “Jesus’ Qualities”. 

Get comfortable, relax and sit back. Breathe deeply and comfortably from your abdomen. Now, go to your soul. Raise your hand to your chin and as you lower it, slip onto your soul. Continue to breathe from your abdomen and sense your morontia mind, the place where your Adjuster has recreated every good decision you have ever made, every good thought you have had, every truth you have recognized, every beautiful image you have seen, all the love you have given and all the love you have received. It is all there in your soul.  Your soul is beautiful and filled with spirit. When you feel like smiling, let that smile bloom naturally on your face and in your soul.

Now meditate on the Jesus quality you have chosen. Allow the feeling of that quality to blossom in your soul and spread throughout your body. Be open to understanding, insight, and illumination about the quality that fills your body and soul. You may want to have a dialogue with spirit about this quality. You may want to ask periodically during this time for more enlightenment on this quality.

I will give you time to meditate on your chosen characteristic.  I will stop the music when the time is up.

[Use Land of Merlin by Jon Mark] 


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By Cap Van Valkenburgh
As regular church goers (Methodist), we have found for years that the oft-repeated Apostle’s Creed is out of tune with the true life and teachings of Jesus. Perhaps some readers would find the following statement of belief to be more palatable.
I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, And in Jesus Christ, His Son our Lord, Who came to illuminate the way to the Father, Taught the Fatherhood of God, and the brotherhood of man. Died, and rose from the dead as the assurance of life everlasting. I believe in the Spirit of Truth, the love of God, the forgiveness of sin, and the life everlasting.  Amen 


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San Francisco, California

Let us compare the attitude toward anger of Jesus, and of that kind of modern psychology which focuses on self-fulfillment without a basis in spiritual growth. This kind of psychology emphasizes the expression of emotions instead of their transformation. It would agree with the principle that “Self-control is a better human policy of behavior regulation than extreme self-denial,” (UB 977C) but would probably not agree that anger is “mean and despicable – hardly worthy of being called human, much less divine.” (UB 57D)

This pop psychology concentrates on the mind and feelings while ignoring the spirit. It would have us learn to talk about our feelings, “share” them with others but it does not condemn anger. All emotions are considered natural and good. It teaches that emotional health comes from learning how to express your emotions. This kind of thinking would have had Jesus respond to Simon Zelotes’ anger at the Romans by saying: “Good, Simon! Don’t be afraid to express your hostility. Get it all out, but don’t hurt anybody.” Had Simon gotten his anger out, you can bet he would have hurt a few Romans. Expression and action are linked.

But Jesus teaches that emotional health comes only from spiritual self-mastery: Anger is a material manifestation which represents, in a general way, the measure of the failure of the spiritual nature to gain control of the combined intellectual and physical natures. Anger indicates a lack of self-respect. Anger depletes the health, debases the mind, and handicaps the spirit teacher of man’s soul. (UB 1673B) Anger is a mental poison. (UB 1204B) And, as the old proverb says: “The fool gives vent to all his angry feelings, but the wise man subdues them…” or “controls them.” (Proverbs 29: 11)

One person, when angry at another, thinks, “how can I get even without getting into trouble?” Another thinks, “how can I express my anger without hurting anyone?” But the Jesusonian thinks, “how can I treat this person as God would treat him, despite my angry feelings?” Irreligious psychology tries to nudge people from the first question to the second, but Jesus impels one to ask the third question. The first two are self-centered, the second representing a higher ethical consciousness than the first, but still unspiritualized. The third question is spirit-centered and offers the only possibility for actually transforming the emotions. Nothing the mind attempts to do with anger is of any use if it does not consult and obey the spirit. Unless this principle is foremost, all ways of “handling” anger fall into mental entanglement and self-delusion, a self-centered instead of a God-centered emotional life. And such mind-techniques are often a way of perpetuating a problem that should be bravely faced and overcome through an inner religious experience.

It takes a religious experience (whether fully conscious or not) to overcome the anger of a bruised ego. Jesus did not teach emotional freedom through expression of whatever is on your mind, but rather transformation through spirit-identification. (UB 1609:C)

How then do we overcome anger? – by our faith and the spirit’s transformation. (UB 1609 D) Jesus said the only way to find deliverance from “outbursts of animal anger” is to let love dominate our hearts. (UB 1673 C) The indwelling spirit can actually change the underlying motives of the heart.

First, one must not base one’s self-respect on the respect bestowed by others, but rather on faith in God’s love. Once one’s self-respect is based on this faith. then one can seek God’s will and know that spiritual adjustment will follow. Recognize that your spirit is not really threatened by whatever is angering you, and that God loves and keeps you. Pray for whomever you are angry at. Believe in God’s transforming power and act as though it were already happening. Believe that God is present. This is both a lifelong process and a technique that can be applied in any specific case.

None of us is expected to be superhumanly superior to human emotions, and certainly God understands our lapses, but each of us is expected to always seek the spirit’s transforming influence. Jesus himself was subject to profound indignation when confronted with indifference or contempt of spiritual values, but never in defense of his own personal feelings. Not many of us are spiritualized enough to unfailingly recognize the difference between unselfish moral indignation and the anger born of injury to self. But all of us are capable of recognizing this difference if we allow our minds to be repeatedly illumined by the spirit.


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Life Is Just a School

Life is just a school.

Your loving spirit Father is your school master.

When you do not follow his suggestions

All sorts of bad things can happen.

But he did not cause them.

He simply did not prevent them.

And why not?

Because life is just a school

And the wisdom of following your master’s guidance

Is the most important lesson.

Bill Cooper 2009


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Continue Reading ‘Spiritual Growth, Part II