The BIG Questions
The Purpose of Life
32:5.7 "There is in the mind of God a plan which embraces every creature of all his vast domains, and this plan is an eternal purpose of boundless opportunity, unlimited progress, and endless life. And the infinite treasures of such a matchless career are yours for the striving! More...
14:5.10 Love of adventure, curiosity, and dread of monotony — these traits inherent in evolving human nature — were not put there just to aggravate and annoy you during your short sojourn on earth, but rather to suggest to you that death is only the beginning of an endless career of adventure, an everlasting life of anticipation, an eternal voyage of discovery." More...
28:6.18 "The universal economy is based on intake and output; throughout the eternal career you will never encounter monotony of inaction or stagnation of personality. Progress is made possible by inherent motion, advancement grows out of the divine capacity for action, and achievement is the child of imaginative adventure. But inherent in this capacity for achievement is the responsibility of ethics, the necessity for recognizing that the world and the universe are filled with a multitude of differing types of beings. All of this magnificent creation, including yourself, was not made just for you. This is not an egocentric universe. The Gods have decreed, “It is more blessed to give than to receive,” and said your Master Son, “He who would be greatest among you let him be server of all”." More...
34:6.11 "The Spirit never drives, only leads. If you are a willing learner, if you want to attain spirit levels and reach divine heights, if you sincerely desire to reach the eternal goal, then the divine Spirit will gently and lovingly lead you along the pathway of sonship and spiritual progress. Every step you take must be one of willingness, intelligent and cheerful co-operation. The domination of the Spirit is never tainted with coercion nor compromised by compulsion." More...
30:4.18 "4. Morontia Progressors. From the mansion worlds on up through the spheres of the system, constellation, and the universe, mortals are classed as morontia progressors; they are traversing the transition spheres of mortal ascension. As the ascending mortals progress from the lower to the higher of the morontia worlds, they serve on countless assignments in association with their teachers and in company with their more advanced and senior brethren. 5:1.4 The mortals of the realms of time and space may differ greatly in innate abilities and intellectual endowment, they may enjoy environments exceptionally favorable to social advancement and moral progress, or they may suffer from the lack of almost every human aid to culture and supposed advancement in the arts of civilization; but the possibilities for spiritual progress in the ascension career are equal to all; increasing levels of spiritual insight and cosmic meanings are attained quite independently of all such sociomoral differentials of the diversified material environments on the evolutionary worlds." More...
5:1.4 "The mortals of the realms of time and space may differ greatly in innate abilities and intellectual endowment, they may enjoy environments exceptionally favorable to social advancement and moral progress, or they may suffer from the lack of almost every human aid to culture and supposed advancement in the arts of civilization; but the possibilities for spiritual progress in the ascension career are equal to all; increasing levels of spiritual insight and cosmic meanings are attained quite independently of all such sociomoral differentials of the diversified material environments on the evolutionary worlds." More...
103:5.7 "The pursuit of the ideal — the striving to be Godlike — is a continuous effort before death and after. The life after death is no different in the essentials than the mortal existence. Everything we do in this life which is good contributes directly to the enhancement of the future life. Real religion does not foster moral indolence and spiritual laziness by encouraging the vain hope of having all the virtues of a noble character bestowed upon one as a result of passing through the portals of natural death. True religion does not belittle man’s efforts to progress during the mortal lease on life. Every mortal gain is a direct contribution to the enrichment of the first stages of the immortal survival experience." More... [TOP ]
Is the love of truth and the willingness to go wherever it leads, desirable? If so, that is why we must begin our existence in a world where error is present and always possible so that we can learn to distinguish between truth and error.Truth is relative and expanding; it always lives in the present, achieving new expression in each generation — even in each human life. Factualized truth, fossilized truth, the iron band of so-called unchanging truth, holds people blindly in a closed circle of cold fact. One can be technically right as to fact and completely wrong in the truth.
Physical facts are fairly uniform, but truth is a living and flexible factor in the universe. People are only partially wise and relatively true in their understandings. They can be certain only as far as their personal experience extends. You cannot perceive spiritual truth until you experience it.
Material science is indispensable to the intelligent discussion of the material aspects of the universe, but such knowledge is not necessarily a part of the higher realization of truth or of the personal appreciation of spiritual realities. Not only in the realms of life but even in the world of physical energy, the sum of two or more things is very often something more than, or something different from, the predictable additive consequences of such unions. The entire science of mathematics, the whole domain of philosophy, the highest physics or chemistry, could not predict that the union of two gaseous hydrogen atoms with one gaseous oxygen atom would result in a new and qualitatively different substance — liquid water. The knowledge of this one phenomenon should have prevented the development of a purely materialistic philosophy and mechanistic cosmology.
Concerning the accumulated writings which various religionists hold as sacred books, it is often not only believed that what is in the book is true, but also that every truth is contained in the book. If one of these sacred books happens to speak of the earth as being flat, then, for long generations, otherwise sane men and women will refuse to accept positive evidence that the planet is round. [TOP ]
When the mortal intellect attempts to grasp the concept of the totality of reality, such a finite mind is face to face with infinity. Reality totality is infinity and therefore can never be fully comprehended by any mind that is less then infinite.
To the finite mind there simply must be a beginning, and though there never was a real beginning to reality, still there are certain source relationships. The prereality eternity situation may be thought of something like this: At some infinitely distant, hypothetical, past-eternity moment, the I AM may be conceived of as both thing and no thing, as both cause and effect, as both will and response. At this hypothetical eternity moment there is no differentiation throughout all infinity. Infinity is filled by the Infinite; the Infinite encompasses infinity. This is the hypothetical static moment of eternity; actuals are still contained within their potentials, and potentials have not yet appeared within the infinity of the I AM. But even in this conjectured situation we must assume the existence of the possibility that the I AM has self-will.
The realms of the finite exist by virtue of the eternal purpose of the I AM becoming Creator. Finite creatures, high and low, may propound theories, and have done so, as to the necessity of the finite, but in the last analysis it exists because the Creator so willed it. The universe cannot be explained, neither can a finite creature offer a rational reason for her or his own individual existence without appealing to the prior acts and pre-existent will of the Creator.
The human mind, as it seeks to penetrate the mystery of the origin and destiny of all that is called real, may approach the problem by conceiving eternity/infinity as an almost limitless ellipse which is produced by one absolute cause, and which functions throughout this universal circle of endless diversification, ever seeking some absolute and infinite potential of destiny.
The Creator has not withdrawn from the management of the universes. If the Creator should retire as the present upholder of all creation, there would immediately occur a universal collapse. Except for the Creator, there would be no such thing as reality. At this very moment, as during the remote ages of the past and in the eternal future, the Creator continues to uphold everything. The universe is not wound up like a clock to run just so long and then cease to function; all things are constantly being renewed. The Creator unceasingly pours forth energy, light, and life.
The universe of universes, with its innumerable host of inhabiting personalities, is a vast and complex organism, but the Creator is infinitely more complex than the totality of universes and personalities. When you stand in awe of the magnitude of the universe, pause to consider that even this inconceivable creation can be no more than a partial revelation of the Infinite. [TOP ]
Death and Survival
Every mortal human being has a spirit nucleus. The mind is a system existing around that spirit nucleus and functioning in a material environment. Such a relationship of mind and spirit gives us the potential for eternal personality. Real trouble, lasting disappointment, serious defeat, or inescapable death can come only if we lose sight of the governing power of the central spirit nucleus.
There is something real, something of human evolution, which survives death. This newly appearing entity is the soul, and it survives the death of both your physical body and your material mind. This entity is the child of the human You in liaison with the divine You. This child of human and divine parentage is the surviving element of mortal origin; it is the immortal soul.
When mortal mind is subservient to matter it is destined to become increasingly material and consequently to suffer eventual personality death. Mind yielded to spirit is destined to become increasingly spiritual and in this way to attain survival and eternity of personality existence.
At death the identity associated with the human personality is temporarily suspended. The stoppage of life destroys the physical brain patterns of the mind and terminates mortal consciousness. The consciousness of that creature cannot reappear until a situation has been arranged which will permit the same human personality to function again in relationship with a new form of living energy.
Death adds nothing to the intellectual possession or to the spiritual endowment, but it does add the consciousness of survival to one’s experience.
Most human beings die because, having failed to achieve the spirit level, death is the only possible way in which they may escape the limitations of time and matter. Having survived the trial life of time and material existence, it becomes possible for you to continue on for eternity.
Love of adventure, curiosity, and dread of monotony — these traits inherent in evolving human nature — were not put there just to aggravate and annoy you during your short time on earth, but rather to suggest to you that death is only the beginning of an endless career of adventure, an everlasting life of anticipation, an eternal voyage of discovery. [TOP ]
Creation and Evolution
The actual early stages of life evolution are not entirely consistent with your present-day views. Human life is not an evolutionary accident – it does not originate spontaneously. There is a precise system, a universal law, which determines the unfolding of the planetary life plan on the planets of space. The process of planetary evolution is orderly and controlled. The development of higher organisms from lower groupings of life is not accidental.Life appears on the inhabited planets either by direct importation or as a result of the operations of the spiritual representatives of the local universes. The spiritual representatives are entrusted with designing and carrying creature life to the planetary spheres. And after planting this life on such new worlds, they remain there for long periods of time to foster its development.
When the spiritual representatives operating on a new world have succeeded in producing a being with will, with the power of moral decision and spiritual choice, then and there their work terminates–they are through; they may manipulate the evolving life no further. From this point forward the evolution of living things must proceed in accordance with the inherent nature and tendencies which have already been established in the planetary life formulas and patterns. The spiritual representatives are not permitted to experiment or to interfere with will; they are not allowed to dominate or arbitrarily influence moral creatures.
On a planet where life has a marine origin the ideal conditions for life implantation are provided by a large number of inland seas, by an extensive shore line of shallow waters and sheltered bays. On Earth, these ancient inland seas were seldom over five or six hundred feet deep, and sunlight can penetrate ocean water for more than six hundred feet.
550,000,000 years ago the spiritual representatives of the local universe organized and initiated the original life patterns of this world and planted them in hospitable waters. All planetary life had its origin in three original, identical, and simultaneous marine-life implantations. These three life implantations have been designated as: the central or Eurasian-African, the eastern or Australasian, and the western, embracing Greenland and the Americas.
About one million years ago the immediate ancestors of humankind made their appearance from early stock of the lemur type of mammal. While these early lemurs evolved in the Western Hemisphere, the establishment of the direct ancestry of humankind took place in southwestern Asia. Several million years ago the North American type lemurs had migrated westward over the Bering land bridge and had slowly made their way southwestward along the Asiatic coast. These migrating tribes finally reached the region lying between the then expanded Mediterranean Sea and the elevating mountainous regions of the Indian peninsula. In these lands to the west of India they united with other and favorable strains, thus establishing the ancestry of the human race. [TOP ]
Every different culture of humanity has its own unique religious perspective on human existence, and these religions can never come to intellectual unification. Human unity can only be achieved through the religion of the spirit. Human minds may differ, but all humanity is indwelt by the same spirit. The hope of human unity can only be realized when the divergent religions become transformed by the unifying and ennobling religion of the spirit — the religion of personal spiritual experience.The religions of authority can only divide people and set them against each other; the religion of the spirit will progressively draw people together and cause them to become understandingly sympathetic with one another. The religions of authority require uniformity in belief, but this is impossible to realize in the present state of the world. The religion of the spirit requires only unity of experience — uniformity of destiny — making full allowance for diversity of belief. The religion of the spirit requires only uniformity of insight, not uniformity of viewpoint and outlook. The religions of authority crystallize their beliefs into lifeless creeds; the religion of the spirit grows into the increasing joy of loving service.
The philosophic elimination of religious fear and the steady progress of science add greatly to the end of false gods and to the eventual destruction of that ignorance and superstition which so long obscured the living Creator of eternal love. The relation between the creature and the Creator is a living experience, a dynamic religious faith, which is not subject to precise definition. To isolate part of life and call it religion is to disintegrate life and to distort religion.
Religious convictions may be arrived at through wise reasoning, but the individual becomes certain only through personal experience. [TOP ]
Why Do Bad Things Happen (to Good People)?
Thoughtful people ask: If God is all-loving and all-powerful why does he allow bad things to happen to good people? Or why is there so much hardship, pain and suffering in the world?
The Urantia Book, an epochal revelation of truth to the world dispels erroneous ideas and provides insights which may prove helpful in reconciling the co-existence of an omniscient, omnipresent and benevolent God with the presence of evil and suffering in the world. Among other things on this topic, the Urantia Book states:
1. God doesn't cause pain and suffering. Our bodies and our spirits are separate realities.
2. There is extreme confusion and chaos in this world.
3. Our early history retarded our physical development.
4. Free will is bestowed by God.
5. We acquire character through challenges and struggle.
In addition to these key points, the Urantia Book continues with the following:
6. God doesn't cause pain and suffering. Our bodies and our spirits are separate realities.
The Urantia Book describes a loving and powerful God and a celestial administration in great detail. (Paper 1) It clarifies the relationship between our physical bodies and our spirit. We're told that we may develop a personal relationship with God and that he has bestowed a guiding inner spirit that we may or may not choose to follow. But our bodies are material, having evolved from animal origins and are subject to accidents, aging, disease and pain. We may develop a deep relationship to God through spirit, but our physical bodies are subject to the natural decay of physical matter. more: [90:3.9]
7. The Lucifer Rebellion caused extreme confusion and chaos on our planet.
Many of the problems of existence on our planet can be traced to the Lucifer Rebellion. more: [67:0] Lucifer defaulted on his responsibilities by advocating total freedom for primitive peoples not ready for the sudden elimination of the cultural beliefs that maintained order and fostered progress in their societies. Among the forms of evil, the most personally destructive are betrayal of trust and disloyalty to one's friends. more: [67:1.3] Much pain and suffering, including social inequality was caused by his actions. The Urantia Book describes the temporal consequences of the serious blunders of the Lucifer Rebellion and the extreme uncertainty, insecurity, struggle and chaos on our planet which is not found on worlds that have been faithfully administered by their planetary spiritual leaders.
8. The default of Adam and Eve deprived us of healthy bodies. According to The Urantia Book Adam and Eve were not the first human beings on earth. They were super mortal beings whose mission in part was to uplift human biology through evolution as they worked for the welfare of the planet. more: [74:7.7] Their super mortal bodies were far more resistant to disease than those of their descendants. They were to have procreated with the native population to foster improved genetics in their progeny through evolution, but they did not fully complete their mission and the body cells of succeeding generations are subject to disease-producing microscopic cells owing to their failure. The true story of the Garden of Eden describes the errors in judgment of Adam and Eve and the consequences of their default to all future generations. more: 
9. Free will is bestowed by God. Because all creatures, human and superhuman are endowed with free will, there is a potential for bad or evil decisions. more:  We are free to hurt ourselves or others. “Each member of a family profits from the righteous conduct of every other member; likewise must each member suffer the immediate time-consequences of the misconduct of every other member.” more: [54:6.3] We all reap the benefits and suffer the consequences of the wrongdoing of all other members of the group.
10. We acquire character through challenges and struggle. The Urantia Book teaches that we may ascend all the way to Paradise and meet God face to face if we sincerely seek to do his will. However, if we are to acquire strong characters and grow spiritually we will face many challenges and experience uncertainty and struggle. Consider the many benefits which are a consequence of confronting life's difficulties: