An Exploration of Creative Living
A consideration of the theme of this year’s ANZURA conference led to two key questions that I will explore in detail in this article:
- What are God’s Gifts?
- What does it mean to be creative?
God’s Gift #1: The Thought Adjuster
Just before our sixth birthday, perhaps sooner, perhaps later, we all made our first moral decision – the choice to do something or not to do something based on our concept of right and wrong – and this decision served as an invitation and a signal that we were ready to receive the greatest gift God bestows – a part of himself. The seventh mind adjutant of wisdom registered this decision through our Creative Spirit, then over the universal mind-gravity spirit of the Infinite Spirit in the presence of the superuniverse Master Spirit who sent this information to Divinington, where Adjusters wait for their assignments. Detailed information about our fledgling souls was sent through by the seraphim – our genetic inheritance and possible paths in life, including intellectual ability and spiritual capacity (Paper p. 1186-86). This may even have included a prediction of us finding The Urantia Book as part of our spiritual journey. A working model of our minds was then formed, to give the Adjuster some guidance in how best to work with us, and then, after spending most of 117 hours, 42 minutes and 7 seconds registering on Uversa, our Adjuster appeared in our minds! (A somewhat worrying indication of red tape being a universal phenomenon).
This gift is a wondrous thing, an actual fragment of our heavenly Father, “that true light which lights everyone who comes into the world” (Paper 101, p.1104). Thought Adjusters have a spiritual luminosity which indicates their presence, but it cannot actually be seen by other spirit beings. They are described, in a creative burst of alliteration by a Solitary Messengers as heavenly helpers, tireless toilers, watchful workers, loving leaders and careful custodians.
Our Thought Adjuster is our ticket to Paradise. With this gift we are assured of reaching the ultimate destination, the abiding place of God our Father, if we choose to do so. The main mission of the Adjusters is to work in our minds to construct, by adjusting and spiritualizing, a new soul for the new worlds. (Paper 108, p. 1191). As it says in the book, “he is the power, privilege and possibility of survival” (Paper 108, p.1193). Every higher thought we have is recreated in our evolving morontial soul, and preserved by our Adjuster.
God’s Gift #2: Personality
“The personality is the unique bestowal which the Universal Father makes upon the living and associated energies of matter, mind and spirit, and which survives with the survival of the morontial soul”. (Foreword, p. 9) Personality is the one changeless reality in an otherwise ever-changing creature experience; and it unifies all other associated factors of individuality. It is designed to function in all phases of our spiritual existence, from finite human on Urantia to Finaliter on Paradise.
The gift of personality lifts us up beyond the animal level of existence.
Only a personality can know what it is doing before it does it; only personalities possess insight in advance of experience. A personality can look before it leaps and can therefore learn from looking as well as from leaping. A non personal animal ordinarily learns only by leaping.
[Paper 16:7,3, page 193.2]
We are capable of becoming moral beings because we have this gift.
Personality is unique. It is bestowed before the Adjuster, and is independent from it, but the Adjuster ‘does augment the qualitative manifestation of personality” (p.194). It is diverse, original and exclusive, and further qualified by the material, mindal and spiritual energies of the person.
Personality represents the ‘fundamental attributes of human self-hood, which are described as “relative creative consciousness and freewill control thereof” (Paper 5, p. 70). It is further defined as consisting of “ identity, self-consciousness, self-will, and possibility for self-revelation” (Paper 1, p. 31) Relative free will , gives us the freedom to choose to make moral decisions, spiritual choices, exercise unselfish love, and purposeful co-operation, seek cosmic insight and dedicate ourselves to living a life consistent with God’s will.
“Bestowal of personality confers the dignity of cosmic citizenship” [Paper 195, page 16]. It enables us to react to the three basic mind realities of the cosmos:
- Mathematical or logical recognition of the uniformity of physical causation, which seems to refer to the laws of physics
- The reasoned recognition of the obligation of moral conduct
- The faith grasp of the fellowship worship of Deity, association with the loving service of humanity
or, to put it another way, the act, the law and the love of God.
God’s Gift #3: The Spirit of Truth
Those of you who attended last year’s conference in Canberra will hopefully recall our exploration of the Spirit of Truth. As we all know, this is the bestowal spirit of the Creator Son, poured out upon a world after a bestowal. It provides guidance, and comfort, and will lead us to all truth, should we choose to accept its guidance. We are told that it works as one with the Holy Spirit of the Divine Minister.
God’s Gift #4: The Holy Spirit
This is a further gift to us all, the spirit of our Local Universe Mother Spirit, that ministers to allminds in the local universe. Unlike the Spirit of Truth, whose effectiveness depends almost entirely on the level of receptiveness of each individual to its influence,
…the Holy Spirit is partly independent of human attitude and partially conditioned by the decisions and co-operation of the will of man.
[Paper 34:5.5, page 379.5]
The Spirit of Truth and the Holy Spirit work together as a dual spirit liaison, hovering over the worlds, teaching truth, spiritually enlightening our minds, inspiring our souls, and leading us to the Paradise goal. We are truly blessed with gifts of great value and assistance in these spirit influences.
The presence of the Holy Spirit of the Universe Daughters of the Infinite Spirit, of the Spirit of Truth of the Universe son of the Eternal Son, and of the Adjuster Spirit of the Paradise Father in or with an evolutionary mortal, denotes symmetry of spiritual endowment and ministry, and qualifies such a mortal consciously to realise the faith-fact of sonship with God. [Paper 34:5.7, page 380.1]
In addition to the spiritual powerhouses just described, there are numerous spirit helpers who teem the universe, providing their assistance in different ways to us struggling mortals.
God’s Gift # 5: Other Spirit Helpers
They are too numerous to name them all, but the main ones in our local universe, all daughter spirits of our Mother Spirit, are:
Seraphic Guardians of Destiny, otherwise called our guardian angels. Their allocation depends on each person’s position on the cosmic circles of progression. We all begin on the 7th circle, where a Guardian Angel has oversight of 1000 mortals. Those who have attained the 4th circle are in groups of 10 per Guardian Angel, and once a moral reaches the 3rd circle, they have a pair of seraphim allocated to them personally. The main role of these spirit helpers is to coordinate all the other impersonal spirit influences, and of course to guard and guide us in our mortal lives. They work through the social, ethical and moral environment of human beings, but are also able to influence the physical environment through liaising with the Master Physical Controllers.
All seraphim are assisted by cherubim and sanobim, the routine spirit workers, who are particularly useful doing the ‘borderland’ work in the physical, morontial and spiritual domains. Although few details are given about their actual duties, I surmise that they are able to operate in both physical and morontial forms, and so carry out activities that the seraphim deem to be necessary for their work.
And finally there are the Midway Creatures. We are all familiar with these wonderful beings. The primary midwayers were brought into existence in the days of Dalamatia, and the secondary midwayers in the times of Adam. This latter group is just outside the range of mortal vision, and function as essential contact personalities. Indeed, they were responsible for bringing us The Urantia Book, as we are told on p. 865:
It was the work of this secondary group, ably seconded by certain of the primary corps, that brought about the co-ordination of personalities and circumstances on Urantia, which finally induced the planetary celestial supervisors to initiate those petitions that resulted in the granting of the mandates making possible the series of revelations of which this presentation is a part. [Paper 77:8.13, page 865.6]
So these are the gifts that the Father has given us – not all of them, but these are the primary ones that influence us in our daily spiritual lives. It’s like Christmas and all our birthdays rolled into one! With all this richness of spiritual giving, our eternal life should be assured! We have no excuse for not being enlightened, spiritually nourished, leading the best spiritual life we can lead, and well on our way towards Light and Life!
The Gifts You Cannot See
However, I’m sure I don’t only speak for myself when I say that unfortunately, I am not aware of these gifts on a daily basis, or even at all. They are like virtual gifts, to use a modern term. I know they are there, but I can’t see them, or feel them, or hear them, or identify their presence much at all. What can be done to bridge the gap between my awareness and these gifts, to enable me to make use of them as the Father intended?
Here is the link to the sub-theme of our gathering – we need to use our creative imagination ( also a gift )!
So what does it mean to be creative? There are two fairly distinct definitions of creativity:
- The ability to bring something into being, something unique that would not naturally evolve, and
- The ability to think of new ideas; to put things together in new ways that produce interesting and unusual results.
Only the Gods have the ability to bring things into being just by thinking about them, an attribute that can referred to as primal creativity. Or, to put it in more traditional terms – God said, “Let there be Light! And there was light”. In the beginning (as we finite beings needs to perceive it) there was the First Source and Centre, who thought the Eternal Son into existence. Together they thought the Infinite Spirit and at the same time the one billion perfect worlds of Havona. This creativity is self-evidently of extreme importance in the grand universe.
….the creatorship nature of Deity takes precedence over all other natures, activities and attributes
[Paper 3:0.3, page 44.3]
The Father Absolute is the creator of the central and perfect universe and the Father of all other Creators
[Paper 3:4.4, page 58.9]
God the Father can give this creative potential to his Creator Sons, the Michaels of the Local Universes, who can create independently, but also co-creates with the Local Universe Mother Spirits in order to bring their local universes into being. In a very small way, it’s also possible to view our ability to create more children an act of co-creativity, if you discount the fact that the Father must add personality and the Infinite Spirit must add mind.
So let us turn now to the second definition of creativity, putting things together in new ways, which could be termed associative creativity. In other words, if we humans want to say “Let there be Light”, first we must build a generator. This type of creativity is demonstrated vividly in the way that the brain functions, as the synapses zap between the neurons making associations between ideas. There are somewhere around a trillion neurons and a quadrillion synapses, so there is a multiplicity of new ideas waiting to be connected in everyone’s brain!
The source of the inspiration that high-end creative people refer to is a subject of much debate. Interestingly, The Urantia Book has a somewhat less than spiritual take on the question.
Certain abrupt presentations of thoughts, conclusions and other pictures of mind are sometimes the direct or indirect work of the Adjuster; but far more often they are the sudden emergence into consciousness of ideas which have been grouping themselves together in the submerged mental levels, natural and everyday occurrences of normal and ordinary psychic function inherent in the circuits of the evolving animal mind. [Paper 110:4.3, page 1207.3]
Research into genes and their role in human behaviour is continuing, and there is still a lot to be learned, but one thing that seems fairly clear is that different traits develop through an interplay between genes and the environment. Genes influence our motivations and preferences and lead us to seek particular environments or contexts that will lead to the development of particular traits and talents.
Science is of course mute on whether there is any spiritual influence on this development but The Urantia Book is not.
There are three possible sources of special human ability: At the bottom always there exists the natural or inherent aptitude. Special ability is never an arbitrary gift of the Gods; there is always an ancestral foundation for every outstanding talent. [Paper 44:8.2, page 507.7]
The Thought Adjuster, perhaps with previous experience, can promote the talent
…the spirit artisans may be delegated to act as harmonizers of those talents. [Paper 44:8.2, page 507.7]
And so is this just a favoured few or do we all have some talent? In fact, current views are that creativity lies on a spectrum. We cannot all be Picassos, or Einsteins, or Shakespeares, but we can be creative in our daily lives in any number of ways.
Researchers in this field have proposed 4 levels of creativity, 3 of which anyone can aspire to.
- Mini-C – this is the individual creativity that takes place when a person learns something
- Little-C – this is everyday creativity, such as baking a cake, doing craft work, art projects and so
- Pro-C – this is a high level of creativity in a particular field of endeavour. It takes passion and lots of practice, but can be entered into at any stage of life.
- Big–C – this is genius level creativity, which only favours the lucky
So we come to the final weaving together of the two themes of God’s gifts and the art of creative living.
We have the gifts of God – the Adjuster, our Personality, the Spirit of Truth, the Holy Spirit and the myriad of spirit helpers that teem in our world. All these gifts so greatly enrich our lives and make it possible for us to embark, right now, on an exciting eternal adventure. And we have talents and attributes, inherited from our parents and grandparents, influenced negatively and positively by our environment, and supported by our Thought Adjusters and possibly other spirit influences. Above all, we have choices. Our choices can help us to use these gifts in the best way we can, and thereby live our lives in the way that our Father intends. This truly is cause for celebration!