The Urantia Papers describe themselves as the fifth epochal revelation of truth to this world; the aim of this short presentation is to shine the light of this fifth epochal insight upon what the Urantia Papers call
Almost 3,000 years ago a poet in Palestine whispered to his God:
“What is man, that you are mindful of him?”
Even today this remains a really good question. Why should the Author of Reality be interested in us ? What’s another planet-full of mortals to the Creator of an eternal infinity? Well, recently, via the Urantia Papers, an answer has been given. An answer appropriate for the age ahead; an answer sufficient for scientists, philosophers and mystics alike. This answer is centered upon the idea of family, and involves an unimaginable transition,
The love of the Father absolutely individualizes each personality as a unique child of the Universal Father, a child without duplicate in infinity, a will creature irreplaceable in all eternity. [Paper 12:7.9, page 138.4]
As family is central, and since families are made of persons, then for us to appreciate this answer we will need first to understand what the Urantia Papers mean by personality, and we will need also to glimpse (at least the outlines of) this unimaginable transition. But have we already hit a problem? How are we to imagine the unimaginable? The author of Paper 115 hints at the way forward,
Man must think in a mortal universe frame, but that does not mean that he cannot envision other and higher frames within which thought can take place.
[Paper 115:1.2, page 1260.3]
The idea here is that what may be utterly unimaginable in one frame may become quite clear, even obvious, in some “other and higher” frame. The Urantia Papers present themselves as just such a frame, and in the frame for thought set up by these papers, the answer to the poet’s question becomes clear, the true nature and purpose of humanity become obvious, and the outlines of this unimaginable transition begin to take shape.
The individual blossoms
The Urantia Papers describe an opportunity presented to all humans: the chance to participate in the most breathtaking of universe transformations—the evolution of finite mortals into free-will universe sons, able to act and associate in their Father’s absolute domain. This brief study is an attempt to describe something of this transition, as portrayed in the Urantia Papers. As we explore the transformation endured by ascendant personality we will come to see humanity—ourselves—in a new light, and be surprised. For what we will discover is that human is part of a transitional technique, used by the Universal Father to zip together two fragments of himself—Adjuster and Person. Given time and space and a master universe age, this union emerges from its absonite womb as an “associable absolute”, and, as a Solitary Messenger puts it, sufficient for “sub-infinite penetration” of the Father’s actualizing absolute domain. [112:1.9, 1226.13]
This study begins with an exploration of Personality, then considers Humanity and the role of Frames for Thought. With all this in place, we will be ready to consider a transition of personality, set in motion before the stage of space and time appeared. As our study of this transition unfolds, we will come to see that the phenomenon of man really makes sense only on the largest—the Absolute—stage.
The concept of truth might possibly be entertained apart from personality, the concept of beauty may exist without personality, but the concept of divine goodness is understandable only in relation to personality. Only a person can love and be loved. Even beauty and truth would be divorced from survival hope if they were not attributes of a personal God, a loving Father. [Paper 1:7.3, page 31.3]
The Urantia Papers imply that there is one thing, one redeeming feature that makes mortals interesting to the original I AM Creator: we are personal. So what is personality? What does it mean to be personal? What relationship does personality have to matter, mind and spirit? And how do all these relate to “reality”?
Moral wisdom and scientific logic both claim insight into these questions, but share little common ground. Over recent centuries these distinct approaches to understanding have forged those frames for thought employed by religionists and secular scientists, yet neither has solved the mystery of personality, let alone reality. But in the “other and higher frame” of the Urantia Papers, both personality and reality are abundantly described. We also see wisdom and logic to be complementary views, both of which personalities require to successfully explore reality.
Let’s first consider how personality and reality appear in a secular materialist view. To the materialist, reality consists of energy evolving in space and through time. Physics shaped this energy into matter; chemistry turned this matter into life, which evolved mind and became man. Man then dreamt for himself a spirit world, and ever since has endured the valley of the shadow of death, troubled by notions of identity, a persistent sense that “I am”. In this materialist frame, personality is reduced to little more than a novelty of complexified biology. Nevertheless, since the current tools and meters of mankind measure only matter, for those researchers following the dictates of logic, this materialist view seems a reasonable first guess. Especially when compared with prevailing tribal tales of vengeful gods.
But the Urantia Papers offer another view, one which avoids the alchemy of turning matter into mind, and mind into spirit. Instead, they describe reality as a configuration of four “absolute presence” circuits, each with its distinct source and center. The source and center of material reality, they call the Isle of Paradise. Anything which responds to this central Isle, they define to be material. The source and center of mind, they call the Infinite Spirit. That which responds to this center, they define to be mind. The source and center of spirit, they call the Eternal Son; that which responds to the Son, they define to be spirit. Finally there is the Universal Father; personality is defined to be that which responds to Him. Personality is revealed to be a circuit so fundamental, and so precious, that the Universal Father did not, or could not, delegate its care. In this other higher frame, one might even conclude that the domains of matter, mind and spirit serve to foster an absolute home, a place for all persons in the family of the original I AM.
So we see that the Urantia Papers turn the materialist frame both upside down and inside out. They reveal personality to be not only the motivational center of reality, but also a desired culmination. Instead of life and mind and man evolving from energy, blindly and by chance, the Papers reveal the material domain to be arranged by mind under the control of spirit for the purposes of the I AM motivator. And it is one of these purposes of the I AM that is the center of our theme: if the Universal Father really did say to the Eternal Son, “Let us make mortal man in our own image”, then for this venture to succeed they require a place and a time, a finite womb and a universe age, from which to give birth to such sons. This need ripples from the absolute, becomes a pre-echo in the absonite, and the Master Architects respond. In the blink of an absolute eye, the Father has his family: trillions of persons, “associable absolutes” [Paper 112:1.19, page 1226.13] made in his image, then enhanced by experience into near infinite variety.
This is the transformation the Urantia Papers help to illuminate—the evolution of us. We are the personalities in transition, and our ascent as persons, from Mortal to Finaliter and beyond, makes us able to endure, and free to enjoy, our Father’s non-finite Paradise home. So, what does this make man? When the poet asked this question, he may not have been ready for the answer.
With so many facets and phases of reality floating about, it’s time for a reality check. Note that we cannot observe or measure the relationships implied above; our best logic and deduction will not provide a proof. So how can we judge whether such sources and relationships are true? Consider that problem of “seeing the forest for the trees”: how can we ever hope to understand the nature of the universal forest, stuck as we are in one cell of a leaf of a sapling?
Are such fundamental aspects of reality beyond mortal capacity to discover? If so, then the Papers state that such things, eventually, may be revealed. Such is the case with the Urantia Papers, which describe themselves as the fifth revelation of epochal significance to this world. But modern, sceptical humanity has learned the hard way to seek proof rather than apply faith. So what to do when faced with revelation? How to proceed? How to integrate revelation into the cultures evolved by mankind? Are we to dismiss logic? Is the acceptance of revelation illogical? In Paper 103, one of Nebadon’s Melchizedeks puts it like this,
Faith most willingly carries reason along as far as reason can go and then goes on with wisdom to the full philosophic limit; and then it dares to launch out upon the limitless and never-ending universe journey in the sole company of TRUTH.
[Paper 103:9:7, page 1141.5]
Our world’s cultures are bumping against each other. Rigid tribal frames are reappearing, an attempt to force crude certainties and order upon confused lives and curious children. Secular humanists suggest we “celebrate life” and enjoy our moment in the sun, since this is as good as it gets. Astronomers peering through telescopes, and physicists peering through super-conducting super-colliding microscopes, gasp with awe at the unimagined wonders they behold. All the while mothers bring babies into families, helping to create small teams of persons learning about life. Indeed, we are a world of baby persons, each yearning and learning and seeking that supreme delight… love for one another.
Yet too many of us see far too much of fear and death and despair. How can this be? Who is responsible? Surely no deity would ever make such a world? Such a state of affairs must make us wonder how the world should be, to ponder the purpose of mankind, to ask again the question, “What is man?” For our world, the time has come when we need to see as we are seen; for this some degree of revelation was simply required. As a Melchizedek explains,
Revelation is a technique whereby ages upon ages of time are saved in the necessary work of sorting and sifting the errors of evolution from the truths of spirit acquirement. [Paper 101:5.1, page 1110.4]
Though the Eternal Son cannot personally participate in the bestowal of the Thought Adjusters, he did sit in council with the Universal Father in the eternal past, approving the plan and pledging endless co-operation, when the Father, in projecting the bestowal of the Thought Adjusters, proposed to the Son, ‘Let us make mortal man in our own image. [Paper 6:5.7, page 78.3]
Here is the non-time moment when the Universal Father and the Eternal Son make plans that involve us. Given the nature of Though Adjusters, these trinity partners are not merely suggesting some associates, but requesting a family. This is no small project. They propose ones like themselves, made with minimal constraints; they envisage associable absolutes, but each drawn upon a blank page. And to amplify uniqueness, such sons should start as human, raised up from mud on the warm, wet worlds of space.
Michael, man and God
This process of bringing man to life, of initiating the Father’s ascending sons, became the challenge of the grand universe age. The Father’s Creator Sons, the Michaels, took on the job, and made themselves the Supreme’s guarantee of success. Papers 32-56 describe how our particular Michael and his Consort, the local universe Divine Minister, approached this task. From literally swinging the material of Nebadon into place, to raising up their own family of administrator sons and ministering daughters, they prepared Nebadon to meet the request of the Universal Father.
And then, when such a universe has been so completely organized and so repletely manned, does the Creator Son enter into the Father’s proposal to create mortal man in their divine image. [Paper 32:2.7, page 359:5]
Now may begin the business of seeding life on the worlds of space; of teasing matter to become responsive to mind; of aligning such animations with the seven adjutants, that first down-grasp of ministry to ascending life. Now the Lanonandeks swing into action, initiating order and culture among the feisty tribes. Soon ascenders are graduating from the mansion worlds, seeking satisfactions for their insatiable curiosity, and adventures for their irrepressible momentum. Before long, these ascending souls arrive at the Halls of Salvington, meet with Michael, and ponder their next moves. Then like proud parents at a graduation, Michael and his Consort bid farewell to another child they’ve fostered to first base, a baby spirit person now seeking its source and center—the I AM Father on paradise. As ages pass, and light and life approach, this occasional launch becomes of flood, a torrent of trillions pouring out from the local universe domains, and streaming in to paradise. What a romance of planning and technique, of persistence and success, of the power of the Father’s love to draw his human children home.
So what then is man? What does the light of fifth epochal insight reveal about the human condition? In this other higher frame, it appears that man is a technique for kick-starting our ascent. The human experience becomes the first in a series of cycles of embryonic assembly, free-will growth, and butterfly-like transformation. By these cycles of expansion and ascent, the Universal Father unfurls the potentials he folded within the union of those fragments of himself, Adjuster and Person. In the frame of the Urantia Papers, man is a moment of opportunity; that moment in the womb of time and space when we can choose to engage a relationship which when consummated makes us literally the sons of God:
The Adjuster is an absolute essence of an infinite being imprisoned within the mind of a finite creature which, depending on the choosing of such a mortal, can eventually consummate this temporary union of God and man and veritably actualize a new order of being for unending universe service. The Adjuster is the divine universe reality which factualizes the truth that God is man’s Father.
[Paper 107:0.6, page 1176.6]
Just when Urantia’s modern materialists claim to have a firm grasp on the nature of man, the Revelators tell us things like this! The secular humanist, mapping the human from genetic components to embryo, to infant, child and adult, and thence to death, happily admits this is a most extraordinary sequence for physics and chemistry to produce; then his logic constrains him to conclude, “So what?”. But with a mere touch of faith we are freed from that stagnant frame, and offered a panoramic view within which the phenomenon of man makes sense. The sort of view enjoyed by Jesus, Melchizedek and Adam, and so sadly misunderstood by a handful of young Lanonandeks.
Are we left to wonder how this scheme of mortal transformation works? What techniques do Michael and his team employ, sufficient to transform mortals made from dust into first stage spirits, able to endure and enjoy the journey to Paradise? Part 2 of The Urantia Book lays out in detail the saga of how Michael is meeting his father’s request. Appropriately, this epic tale begins as adjutant motivation in the mind of our Local Universe Mother, the Divine Minister of Salvington:
It is the presence of the seven adjutant mind-spirits on the primitive worlds that conditions the course of organic evolution; [Paper 36:5.1, page 401.5]
…they are in fact a level of consciousness of the Divine Minister
[Paper 36:5.4, page 402.1]
The seven adjutant circuits appear to be the targets at which the Life Carriers aim their efforts to evolve their patterns of planetary life. Technically, the human of any given world is that animal able to respond to the full spectrum of adjutant motivation, those seven differential urges animating transitory material life. The initial human condition thus becomes an exercise where mortals struggle with themselves, adjusting from being merely a responder to adjutant arousal,
In the mortal experience the human intellect resides in the rhythmic pulsations of the adjutant mind-spirits and effects its decisions within the arena produced by encircuitment within this ministry. [Paper 117:5.7, page 1286.5]
to becoming a responsible ascender, hungering and thirsting for the next level of the Divine Minister’s ministry. Indeed, for progressive humans, the “adjutant” technique of motivation soon falls away, like training wheels once a child has learned to ride:
From the seventh to the third circle there occurs increased and unified action of the seven adjutant mind-spirits in the task of weaning the mortal mind from its dependence on the realities of the material life mechanisms preparatory to increased introduction to morontia levels of experience. From the third circle onward the adjutant influence progressively diminishes. [Paper 110:6.20, page 1211.5]
But again, as with personality, spirit and mind, this scenario of adjutant arousal is currently beyond our capacity to measure or to prove. So how do we answer the materialist when, together with the revelators he points out that,
In the inner experience of man, mind is joined to matter. Such material-linked minds cannot survive mortal death. [Paper 1:3.7, page 26.1]
The dictates of logic have, slowly and without remorse, steered some to a secular humanism, a frame whitewashed with notions of awe and respect, but purged of all hope for personal survival beyond death: “from dust to dust”. But once again, we are free to exploit revelation to expand this barren, narrow view:
But selfhood of survival value, selfhood that can transcend the experience of death, is only evolved by establishing a potential transfer of the seat of the identity of the evolving personality from the transient life vehicle—the material body—to the more enduring and immortal nature of the morontia soul and on beyond to those levels whereon the soul becomes infused with, and eventually attains the status of, spirit reality. [Paper 112:2.19, page 1229.7]
In the Urantia frame, the human experience of birth, life and death is seen to be the first in a series of cycles: of formation, evolution and transition. The material cycle enables transition to the morontial; the morontia regime enables transition to the spiritual; and the grand universe spiritual ascent enables transition beyond the finite. Who but the Creators themselves could have foreseen such persons and such journeys, unfolding from mere humans and their unremarkable material lives?
Material mind is the arena in which human personalities live, are self-conscious, make decisions, choose God or forsake him, eternalize or destroy themselves.
[Paper 111:1.3, page 1216.4]
For us, on this quarantined and confused world, “human” implies an adjutant-animated mortal striving for alignment, contact and fusion with an indwelling spirit monitor, the Thought Adjuster.
Mind is the human soil from which the spirit Monitor must evolve the morontia soul with the co-operation of the indwelt personality. [Paper 111.1.1 page 1216.2]
This exercise of adjutant mastery and Adjuster attunement takes place in the “mind arena of choice”, that private inner world, shaped by circumstance but furnished by ourselves:
It is the creativity of the inner world that is most subject to your direction because there your personality is so largely liberated from the fetters of the laws of antecedent causation. [Paper 111:4.3, page 1220.2]
But if each of us is subject to the constructs and delusions of our private inner worlds, is there any objective way for us, or those near us, to gauge our progress? Our fellows may see our achievements, and suspect our unseen fruits; our motivations and potentials may be laid bare to the sight of our seraphim and administrators. But how are we to judge ourselves? Is there any simple way for us to measure our success? Near the start of our journey, one sure way is to check how we relate with our fellows. When childish and primitive antagonisms give way to “feelings of tenderness” and “emotions of tolerance”, we know are improving. As we increasingly know ourselves, more deeply can we understand our fellows. This insight generates tolerance, this tolerance becomes friendship, and friendship ripens easily into love. Love is the business of persons, so this increasing capacity to love, and to be loved, is a sure sign that as persons, we are growing as intended.
The individual progress of human beings is measured by their successive attainment and traversal (mastery) of the seven cosmic circles. These circles of mortal progression are levels of associated intellectual, social, spiritual, and cosmic-insight values. Starting out in the seventh circle, mortals strive for the first.
[Paper 49:6.8, page 569.3]
Entrance upon the seventh circle marks the beginning of true human personality function. Completion of the first circle denotes the relative maturity of the mortal being. [Paper 110:6.1, page 1209.1]
We are told that our quantity of growth may be measured by our mastery at integrating levels of associated intellectual, social, spiritual, and cosmic-insight values. They call these levels the seven psychic circles, seven levels of actual cosmic attainment. “Starting out in the seventh circle, mortals strive for the first”. But while progress through these circles may measure of our quantity of growth, our quality as persons is reflected… by our capacity to love. And perhaps the best measure of this is the intensity of our union, our experience of at-one-ment with our source and center, the Paradise Father.
All alike are liberated from the bonds of flesh by the emancipation of natural death, and all alike go thence to the morontia worlds of spiritual evolution and mind progress. [Paper 49:6.1, page 568:4]
How far can we progress as humans, before death disrupts this first phase of partnership with our Adjuster? What inherent limitations are placed on the human condition? Is the remedial work done on the mansion world always required? In Paper 112, a Solitary Messenger alerts us twice to the fact that we have the power to
…transfer our seat of identity… from the material intellect system to the soul..
[Paper 112:2. 20, page 1229.7]
But this is a material and purely temporary manifestation, just as the human embryo is a transient parasitic stage of human life. […] But mortal personality, through its own choosing, possesses the power of transferring its seat of identity from the passing material-intellect system to the higher morontia-soul system which, in association with the Thought Adjuster, is created as a new vehicle for personality manifestation. [Paper 112:5.4, page 1232.5]
Assuming such transfer can be made, would we afterwards be seen as morontia beings, even though still dwelling in the flesh? If such a morontia puberty is part of the design specifications for humans in Nebadon, then this may have been a step that Michael himself took during that seventh bestowal where, as Jesus, he demonstrated in full the capacity of the mortal children of Nebadon. His life as Jesus illustrated an ideal of balanced, harmonious and rapid human growth. And if this success included transfer to his soul, then no wonder those struggling nearby saw in him a new order of man. While our forebears were confronted by Michael’s bestowal life among them, the rest of Nebadon were treated to a masterly display of what normal women and men can be. Like John before him, the life of Jesus was “an eloquent rebuke” to those who claim as defence for their mediocrity, “but we’re only human”, explaining that “you cannot change human nature”. What an ironic inversion, given that our “human nature” is our vehicle for change!
What manner of world would it be, where all adult humans become such soul dwellers, rising gracefully and graciously to this marvellous mortal state! This may be what the Papers imply by a world in light and life, where mortals move on via the modified techniques, where all souls on board encompass the quantity of light and the quality of love that Jesus showed. Such is the capacity of us and our world too. Reflection on this might provide some comfort, as our world writhes in the agonies of repair.
We might also think of Jesus’ successful mortal life as final confirmation that the local universe he made for his Father is up to spec, that Nebadon is one more place from where the ascending sons and daughters of the I AM Father may be launched safely to paradise. As Jesus said:
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No man goes to the Father except through me. All who find the Father, first find me.” [Paper 180:3.7, page 1947.6]
In the frame of the Urantia Papers, this defining, crucial point of Christian dogma becomes a simple fact: none of us—the ascending fruit of this local universe womb—may start our superuniverse careers until Michael decides we are ready. But that it requires a Creator Son to midwife our birth, is a hint at the scope of our transformation, and intended destination. What, really, is man? The mystery is only getting deeper!
The concealed seed of the human soul is an immortal spirit. The second generation of the soul is the first of a succession of personality manifestations of spiritual and progressing existences, terminating only when this divine entity attains the source of its existence, the personal source of all existence, God, the Universal Father.
[Paper 132:3.6, page 1459.6]
As we learn more about ourselves, about our personality and the role of our human phase in kick-starting our transition—from mortal to finaliter and beyond—we find that suitable definitions for human depend to some degree on context. Perhaps only the Universal Father and the Michaels know truly what we are. Certainly Michael’s Melchizedeks will have theories that map the (finite to post-absonite) span of man; and his Vorondadeks must surely sense the importance of the Father’s business with which Michael is engaged. But how might we appear to those designed to draw most near to us, those three levels of Lanonandeks who most intimately nurture our first steps? Are they able to fully grasp “the phenomenon of man”? These Lanonandeks, those descending sons of Michael specifically tuned for work with mortals in the material and morontia domains, are exquisite specializations. But their very specialization may serve to limit their feel for truths beyond the finite. If so, then they, like us, may be taking much on faith. Is this where Lucifer stumbled? Does the need for faith imply a Lanonandek dilemma?
The Thought Adjuster is the cosmic window through which the finite creature may faith-glimpse the certainties and divinities of limitless Deity, the Universal Father. [Paper 103:0.1, page 1129.1]
Do Lanonandeks have such a window through which to glimpse their post-grand universe selves? The mortal men and women for whom they care soon learn that they are only “passing through”, but the Lanonandeks themselves are here for the long haul, embedded in the spaces of time for the duration of the age. Is this why they can get distracted by transient goals, and the thrill of quick results?
Given the depths and mysteries of man, it makes one wonder how we—as humans—might appear to the different orders of descending local universe sons. To get some insight into this, let’s take a break and visit Immanuel’s Bar, there to ponder the Parable of the Womb.
(this was dramatically presented at the 2007 Conference in Melbourne)
The administrative divisions of the grand universe mark out three increasingly unfettered domains, into which we ascenders are placed, and within which we evolve: (i) the local system, where we are weaned from the material energies that brought us to life. (ii) the local universe, where experience enjoyed and endured make possible our transition from the morontial. (iii) the superuniverse, where our journey to Paradise makes us ready for the billion surprises presented by the Eternals of Days, and the culmination of our finite careers. The grand universe serves us as a school, and our lessons learned make possible our transition from the finite.
We advertised “an unimaginable transition”, but nothing up till now has been unimaginable. These ideas are reasonable to religionists, even if not familiar dogma. However, we have been discussing finite things, occurring in the superuniverse membranes of creation. We now approach a concept for which we need some “other and higher frame”:
But the last metamorphic sleep is something more than those previous transition slumbers which have marked the successive status attainments of the ascendant career; thereby do the creatures of time and space traverse the innermost margins of the temporal and the spatial to attain residential status in the timeless and spaceless abodes of Paradise. [Paper 27:1.3, page 299.3]
To round off this survey of what we might call the cosmic stages of man, let’s point to one more transition, from Paradise Finaliter to “associable absolute”, implied by the following unfathomable hint from a Solitary Messenger:
The type of personality bestowed upon Urantia mortals has a potentiality of seven dimensions of self-expression or person-realization. These dimensional phenomena are realizable as three on the finite level, three on the absonite level, and one on the absolute level. On subabsolute levels this seventh or totality dimension is experiencible as the fact of personality. This supreme dimension is an associable absolute and, while not infinite, is dimensionally potential for subinfinite penetration of the absolute. [Paper 112:1.9, page 1226.13]
These words imply a package of concepts that simply does not fit into familiar finite frames. But as we discover the territory mapped out by the Urantia Papers, as our insight increases into the nature of the frame for thought they weave, these post-finite ideas fit well in the picture of reality they present. If hu mA n really is just Act 1 in the drama of transitions invented by God the Sevenfold, and if the Acts that follow serve to zip together the pair of absolute components bestowed by the Universal Father, then the Last Act has no end, and its stage is absolute. Our education will allow us to step onto such a stage, and while we might not yet even guess the nature of that play, we might admire the Father’s scheme: just qualify a little space, add a touch of time, and voila! — seven dimensional Sons emerging from their absonite womb, a family of “associable absolutes”, just right and ready for sub-infinite penetration of the Father’s actualizing absolute domain.
We have been using the idea of a “frame for thought”, a framework of concept in which thought can take place. This idea is most clearly expressed at the start of Paper 115,
Partial, incomplete, and evolving intellects would be helpless in the master universe, would be unable to form the first rational thought pattern, were it not for the innate ability of all mind, high or low, to form a universe frame in which to think. If mind cannot fathom conclusions, if it cannot penetrate to true origins, then will such mind unfailingly postulate conclusions and invent origins that it may have a means of logical thought within the frame of these mind-created postulates. And while such universe frames for creature thought are indispensable to rational intellectual operations, they are, without exception, erroneous to a greater or lesser degree.[Paper 115:1.1, page 1260.2]
Reflecting on the way our cultures arose shows just how partial, transient and erroneous these frames can be: the dream-like mindscapes of the Andonic aborigines; the mythic worlds invented before monotheism could be perceived; the crude certainties of mediaeval Christianity and Talibanized Islam; and [the mosaic of themes weaving strangely through the kaleidoscope of the economic West]. Such a range of changing frames in the brief span of human history illustrates how frames must compromise fact and truth with evolving cultural capacity, and that the best frame for an age and a culture is one appropriate for up-stepping the millions of souls it bears. But as emotional enticements give way to the lures of maturity, as the roots of motivation grow deeper, so does the need increase for an expanded frame for thought. But since the range of our thinking is bound by the frame we use, we cannot simply create for ourselves a larger truer frame. Nevertheless, by understanding the way our frames evolved, we can by analogy predict that our descendents will view our frameworks of belief as parochial and quaint. Thus we can imagine the view of reality seen through their future frame could be superior to ours in every way:
Man must think in a mortal universe frame, but that does not mean that he cannot envision other and higher frames within which thought can take place.
[Paper 115:1.2, page 1260.3]
Even so, as long as we consider finite frames employed by beings bound by time and space, we must admit the fundamental problem:
Beyond the Supreme, concepts are increasingly names; less and less are they true designations of reality; more and more do they become the creature’s projection of finite understanding toward the superfinite. [Paper 115:3.4, page 1262.1]
Once we perceive the existence and role of frames, and understand how limited our ideas of truth must be, we become free to imagine future better frames; and by induction, better better frames. So what if we let our imaginations soar? Can we postulate a biggest and best possible frame, an “unframed frame” such as the Universal Father Himself might use? But is this not the very reality hinted at by our Adjuster— “the cosmic window through which the finite creature may faith-glimpse the certainties and divinities of limitless Deity,” —the non-relative reality that needs no frame?
I mentioned earlier how that which is unimaginable in one frame, may become clear, even obvious in some other higher frame. Let’s now try to change gears, to shift into the other higher frame spun by the Urantia Papers, and see what they reveal about how the Universal Father views His ascending mortal sons. Let’s begin at the beginning and consider the simplest possible ideas about the Universal Father: His nature, His perspective and His motivation:
On the perspective of the Universal Father:
As far as the Universal Father is concerned — as a Father — the universes are virtually nonexistent; he deals with personalities; he is the Father of personalities.
[Paper 15:0.1, page 164.1]
On the nature of the Universal Father:
Undoubtedly the attainment of God in absolute would reveal the Primal Ancestor of universes as well as the Final Father of personalities. [Paper 118:2.2, page 1296.3]
On the motivation of the Universal Father:
[…], when the Father, in projecting the bestowal of the Thought Adjusters, proposed to the Son, “Let us make mortal man in our own image.” And as the spirit fragment of the Father dwells within you, […] [Paper 6:5.7, page 78.3]
The technique of our Universal Father?
“But I declare to you that my Father in Paradise does rule a universe of universes by the compelling power of his love. Love is the greatest of all spirit realities. Truth is a liberating revelation, but love is the supreme relationship.”
[Paper 143:1.4, page 1608.1]
The love of the Universal Father—our father—is the power that transforms us towards perfection, and into absolute association. Literally, perfection means “thoroughly made”; when he decided to make us in his image, he intended us not to be half-baked. Hence “as Jesus passed by” he often said:
“Be you therefore perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.”
The unimaginable Frame
From the sequential, time viewpoint, all reality has its origin in the infinite I AM, whose solitary existence in past infinite eternity must be a finite creature’s premier philosophic postulate. The concept of the I AM connotes unqualified infinity, the undifferentiated reality of all that could ever be in all of an infinite eternity.
[Paper 105:1.3, page 1152.6]
The reality behind the surface that we see may be beyond imagination, but our trust and logical faith can help us to see that our Father, and his universe of universes, are trying to make themselves known:
Unqualified infinity is meaningless to the finite creature, but infinity is capable of self-limitation and is susceptible of reality expression to all levels of universe existences. And the face which the Infinite turns toward all universe personalities is the face of a Father, the Universal Father of love. [Paper 105:1.8, page 1153.5]
While we many never know how the I AM partitioned reality as Qualified and Unqualified, we can imagine how the tensions from such absolute separation become the generator of energy powering the transactions of eternity and the economics of infinity.
While we may never know how the Master Architects turn a qualified focus of the Father into the absonite, that bounded place for space, that buffer against the timeless grip of eternity, that cave in infinity serving as womb for the sequences of time, we can nevertheless imagine that such a place must be. Only such a sheltered nest could permit to exist those changes which the Father would have ripple back into his absolute domain.
While we may never know how the Force Organizers ripen space potency, we can see in their work the first glimpse of sequence, as they evolve the energies of infinity into the matter and power of space.
While we may never know how the Master Spirits weave their membranes of finite creation, or how life and mind can join with matter, and hence be evolved to man, there is one thing we can very clearly understand: the drawing power of love upon ourselves, that joyful urge of persons towards persons. Like planets seeking orbits about their central star, we persons become a wave of willful love, in orbit about the First Source and Center, the Father of us all.
The Urantia Papers reveal personality to be so fundamental—as first source of everything and the destiny of all—that the Universal Father did not, or could not, delegate its care. The Papers also reveal an absolute transition—of particles of personality into free-will universe Sons.
This transition is caused by the Universal Father, and powered by love: “Let us make man in our own image.” This request of the Father becomes a command through the Son and the Spirit. The hosts of Havona stir, the machinery of Paradise responds, the most wondrous adventure begins:
Sons, made as if from nothing to become ones like the Father; made from mortal stuff on the worlds of time; in the quiet places of a qualified, finite space.
We are told that such transformations are unique to this brief age of time, but we are left to guess what ramifications may ripple from our birth.