Riding Easy, Riding Forever.

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I never wanted to be anybody else.”
Wyatt, Easy Rider

Peter Henry Fonda  •  February 23, 1940 – August 16, 2019

You know who he is.

That’s right, Jane Fonda’s little brother.  The one who changed a chunk of our culture with the film, Easy Rider.  There are going to be a lot of articles about him now that he’s ridden off into the future; maybe Dennis Hopper, too.  I’m doing this one out of simple gratitude, for shaping my long relationship with choppers, and perhaps much more.

I made the long flight back from Vietnam to the CONUS in December of 1969. Poignantly, I moved to “Normal,” Illinois, and got into school on the G.I. bill.  That spring I bought a royal blue 500 cc Triumph twin, and started chopping it immediately.  I, along with thousands and thousands of others, had been introduced to choppers by Easy Rider, a bit of cinema that has influenced the culture in ways both good and bad, for the past fifty years.  And for that, I thank him.  He’ll be resting in peace for a bit, but eventually he’ll be riding easy again, in a brand new world.

Easy Rider 500 cc Triumph Twin

Triumphs used to be called “Trumpers,” but it was slang, not a slur. How things change.  It made a sweet sound, but you’d literally get your ass blown all over the road. Notice the aluminum bar struts; seriously; you had to really hold on.

Back in this world tho, it’s a time to take a look back at where we’ve been.  Easy Rider has had more of an influence over my artistic style than I may understand, and with Fonda’s passing, it’s an opportunity to take another look at just what that is.

I can easily trace the origins of my desire to mess with bikes to my desire to mess with cars; I was an early adapter to drag strip culture and tho my early trial and error days were mostly bolt-on projects, with the help of a couple friends I swapped out the six banger in my first car with a full race v-8.

Easy Rider 500 cc Triump Twin

See? It looks Normal, don’t it?

1966 XLCH Sportster

Rear fender already chopped off; new leather seat, risers with pullback bars, no mirror yet; front brake unhooked. Otherwise a stock 1966 XLCH. Photo by TPK circa 1971

Bikes are a different animal. Handlebars were the first thing I changed on my bike.  “Z” bars were new in the early seventies, at least in Normal.  The aluminum bar struts that replaced the shocks were intended to lower the bike and look tough, but they damn near broke my butt and maybe my lower spine.  I hand-painted the stars with a brush, because well, blue tank.  And my rep; I was an art major. And off to school we go.

I might have looked this way in 1972 even if Easy Rider had never been a thing. Who knows. Yes, I needed those glasses; I rode in my father’s WWII flight jacket. I swear, that was the last pocket tee I ever owned.

The following spring, someone made me an offer I couldn’t refuse.  I sold the bike, and a green ’63 Volkswagen beetle with Big Daddy Roth slicks and Cragar mags on the back, to a guy who said he had to have them both.  I grinned and took his cash, but by the end of the week I had forked it all over for a low-mileage ’66 XLCH.

That was 1971.  And that was a crazy summer.  “You know I smoked a lotta grass. Oh Lord!  I popped a lot of pills. But I never touched nothin’ that my spirit could kill.”  (Got to know several women who liked to ride on choppers as much as I did, too.)  Hell, you could pay the rent, buy food, drugs and beer, and still afford to build a chopper and date a girl— all on a decent factory summer job paycheck. Huzzaaa.

“You know, this used to be a hell of a good country.”
—George Hansen, Easy Rider

Meanwhile, towards the end of that June, Senator Mike Mansfield‘s amendment was adopted by Congress. It urged withdrawing American troops from South Vietnam at “the earliest practical date.”  It was the first time in U.S. history that Congress had actually called for the end of a fucking war.

The 8″ over fork tubes came next, with a new spooly spoke wheel; cause, we doan’ need no stinkin’ front brake; we lookin’ cool and we be indestructible.  That winter, I painted the tank and fender in the basement, with a cheap badger airbrush running off a CO2 bottle.

I really wasn’t into God then.  I hadn’t even learned how many of my high school buddies had been killed in Vietnam yet.  But I greatly respected and admired Michelangelo’s work, especially his face of God from the Sistine Chapel.  I drew the panels on either side of the tank with pencil, one in black and white, the other in psychedelic purples.

It turned out that a guy that would one day become the best man at my wedding became a roommate about then, and he rode a sweet little XLH with an emerald green paint job.  There’s nothing but corn and soybeans for miles in every direction around Normal, but we rode the shit outa that restless tar. . .

Easy Rider God Tank Right

So the bike reminiscence is for some historic perspective on my personal two-wheeler journey.  But. It’s really never been about choppers, Easy Rider, or even Peter Fonda.  It’s about the journey— and making the journey last— forever.

It took me decades to learn that all that matters is the experience of living this life, and that relationships with people are ends in themselves.  The rest is mostly just scaffolding.  If you aren’t continuing the eternal journey, you got nothin’.  It’s a choice we all get to make.

Sure, I love riding a chopper on a fresh morning with perfect air, warm sunshine; watching the headlight bounce down the night highway with a thousand points of light overhead. Even the periodic bug in the face. And my curiosity is always on fire for whatever the next iteration of all that is, farther down eternity road.  I’m all in.

In October, 1971, Australia and New Zealand decided to withdraw their troops from Vietnam. And by the end of October, the total number of American troops still in Vietnam dropped to a record low of 196,700.  By December of the following year, my whole world would change forever; but that’s a blog about as long as book, a book that. . . well.

Easy Rider God Tank left

The face of God from the Sistine Chapel.

So.  Peter Fonda launched a cultural shift that has made it into the 21st century, although it is hardly recognizable.  You can still watch Easy Rider as way to at least partially reboot your brain, as I did before I started this blog.  But it didn’t really work the way I thought it would, as so many things stuck out as weird or time-worn;  except he seemed to get religion during his acid trip.. . but you really can’t go back.  Time marches on, bla bla bla. But there’s really something to that; we keep moving forward, ever forward, some kickin’ and screamin’, some resigned to it;  some just taken off the planet without so much as a second’s warning.

This time we’re in now, now. . .  now— so often lacks that spark of spirit, that knowing deep inside where you have to find the courage to look before you can see— a recognition that life goes on forever, if you want it, really want it;  no half-assing it.  And Peter Fonda’s passing into the great beyond, the next world of reawakening, is a perfect time to wake to your trip— following eternity road.  Saddle up.

Easy Rider Reflectivity

My chopper evolution landed here:  Reflectivity    2003 — current.  This will do me until I can get my hands on the throttle of whatever replaces it in the next world.

 

HOW DID HUMAN BEINGS GET HERE?

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ADAM AND EVE UNDER THE TREE OF KNOWLEDGE By Ernst Fuchs 1984

ADAM AND EVE UNDER THE TREE OF KNOWLEDGE —By Ernst Fuchs 1984

 

From the lying mirror to the movement of stars,
everybody’s looking for who they are;

Those who know don’t have the words to tell,
and the ones with the words don’t know too well. . .

—Burden Of The Angel/Beast,   Bruce Cockburn   Dart To The Heart

 

The original life designs for the human creatures of time and space were provided by the very same being who incarnated on our world 2,000 years ago as Jesus of Nazareth.  

 

 

THE FIRST HUMAN BEINGS
From the year A.D. 2019 back to the birth of the first two human beings is just 993,504 years.  They were male-female twins; born to Primates parents.[1] They were born in the then salubrious climate of ancient Mesopotamia, (Greek for ‘between two rivers’) a region located in the eastern Mediterranean, bounded in the northeast by the Zagros Mountains, and the southeast by the Arabian (Persian) Plateau.

They were a very curious and adventurous pair; so much so, that they nearly lost their lives numerous times before their eighth birthday. By the age of ten they had worked out a sign and word language of almost fifty ideas; but they were unable to teach their parents and peers virtually any of their new signs and symbols.

The twins called each other Sonta-an and Sonta-en— Sonta-an meaning “loved by mother,” Sonta-en signifying “loved by father.” They gave themselves these names, names significant of their mutual regard and affection for one another. The Life Carriers[2]  who over-saw the original life implantations on our world referred to them as Andon, (male) and Fonta, (female).

When they were about nine years of age, they journeyed some distance down the river one day to hold a momentous conference. (Every celestial intelligence stationed on Urantia at that time was present as an observer of the transactions of this “tryst.”) The twins arrived at an understanding to live with and for each other; this was the first of a series of agreements which finally culminated in their decision to flee from their inferior animal associates, and to journey northward; little knowing that they were about to found the human race.

Their subsequent decision to run away from their home tribe and thereby segregate their offspring from their inferior ancestors, demonstrated human intelligence. Within three days of this decision, Urantia was recognized by the Life Carriers as having evolved creatures with the requisite human level of will dignity; “intelligent life” had evolved down here on earth.

Andon and Fonta’s parents were said to be average Primates, though among the tribe’s more intelligent members, e.g., the group which were first to learn to throw stones and to use clubs in fighting. Andon, while still living with his parents, had fastened a sharp piece of flint on the end of a club, using animal tendons for this purpose, and “. . .on no less than a dozen occasions he made good use of such a weapon in saving both his own life and that of his equally adventurous and inquisitive sister.”

The twins spent most of their time in each other’s company and thus had never been overly popular with the Primates tribe. They also had not improved their standing in the tribe by building a separate— and very superior— tree home.

Andon and Fonta had also constructed— some half-day’s journey to the north— a crude treetop retreat, a secret and safe hiding place in anticipation of their first day away from the home forests. Although the twins shared the Primates’ deathly fear of being on the ground at night, they safely made it to their prepared rendezvous shortly after midnight.

On this northward journey they discovered an exposed flint deposit and, finding many stones suitably shaped for various uses, gathered up a supply for the future. In attempting to chip these flints so that they would be better adapted for certain purposes, Andon discovered their sparking quality, and somewhat later conceived the idea of building fire. 3

“Before they had been away from home ‘one moon,’ Andon signified to his mate that he thought he could make fire with the flint. They tried for two months to utilize the flint spark for kindling a fire, but only met with failure. Each day they would strike the flints trying to ignite the wood. Finally, one evening about sunset, the secret was unraveled when it occurred to Fonta to climb a near-by tree to secure an abandoned bird’s nest. The nest was dry and highly inflammable, and consequently flared into a full blaze the moment the spark fell upon it; they were so surprised and startled at their success that they almost lost the fire, but they saved it by the addition of suitable fuel, and then began the first search for firewood by the parents of all mankind.”

“This was one of the most joyous moments in their short but eventful lives. All night long they sat up watching their fire burn, vaguely realizing that they had made a discovery which would make it possible for them to defy climate and thus forever to be independent of their animal relatives of the southern lands. After three days’ rest and enjoyment of the fire they journeyed on. 4

Nearly two years from the twins’ departure from home, their first child was born. They named him Sontad; he was the first creature to be born on Urantia who was wrapped in protective coverings at the time of birth. The human race had begun.

With this new chapter in evolution there appeared the instinct to properly care for the increasingly enfeebled infants which would characterize the progressive development of mind of the intellectual order as contrasted with the more purely animal type.

Andon and Fonta had nineteen children, and eventually almost fifty grandchildren and half a dozen great-grandchildren. This extended family lived in four adjoining rock shelters, or semicaves, three of which were interconnected by hallways which had been excavated in the soft limestone with flint tools devised by their children.

These early human beings evinced a very clannish spirit; they always hunted in groups and stayed close to their homesite. They appeared to realize that they were an isolated and unique group of living beings and should avoid becoming separated.5

These primitive human beings had black eyes and swarthy complexions. Melanin was the original skin pigment of these first humans. In general appearance and skin color, they more nearly resembled present-day Eskimos. They were also the first creatures to use the skins of animals as a protection against cold; they had little more hair on their bodies than present-day humans.

Andon and Fonta lived to the age of forty-two, when they were both killed during an earthquake by the falling of an overhanging rock. Five of their children and eleven grandchildren perished with them; nearly twenty of their descendants suffered serious injuries.

Upon their deaths, Sontad, despite a seriously injured foot, immediately assumed the leadership of the clan assisted by his wife, his eldest sister. Their first task was to roll up stones to entomb their dead parents, brothers, sisters, and children. However, “. . .undue significance should not attach to this act of burial. Their ideas of survival after death were very vague and indefinite, being largely derived from their fantastic and variegated dream life.” This extended family held together until the twentieth generation, when combined food competition and social friction brought about the beginning of their eventual dispersion.

The tribal life of the animal ancestors of these early men foreshadowed the beginnings of numerous social conventions, and with the expanding emotions and augmented brain power, there was an immediate development in social organization and a new division of clan labor.

They were exceedingly imitative, but their instinct to play was barely developed; and the sense of humor was almost entirely absent. Primitive men did smile occasionally, but never indulged in “hearty laughter.” (Humor was the legacy of the later appearing Adamic race.) It is also notable that these early human beings were not so sensitive to pain nor so reactive to unpleasant situations as were many later evolving humans. And childbirth was not a painful or distressing ordeal to Fonta and her immediate progeny.

The appearance of mortal beings of “will dignity” is never an accident, anywhere in the entire universe. The evolution of human beings is a fully planned and highly organized undertaking, with the continuous watch-care of entire orders of beings of the spiritual realm. Mortal life is a completely designed and carefully executed project implemented on selected evolutionary worlds specifically designed for such a purpose.

The Grand Universe How Did We Get Here?

“We are all part of an immense plan, a gigantic enterprise, and it is the vastness of the undertaking that renders it impossible to see very much of it at any one time and during any one life. We are all a part of an eternal project which the Gods are supervising and outworking.”   —The Urantia Book   Paper 32   The Evolution Of Local Universes   Section 5   The Eternal And Divine Purpose

 

THE LIFE CARRIERS
The actual outworking of all such plans is entrusted to a group of beings called the “Life Carriers.”  When general life plans for a new world have been formulated, they are minutely scrutinized by the supreme council of the senior Life Carriers, in collaboration with a corps of consulting Melchizedeks.

There are over one million fundamental or “cosmic chemical formulas” which constitute the “parent patterns and the numerous basic functional variations of life manifestations.”  Satellite number one of the life-planning sphere is the realm of the universe physicists and electrochemists who serve as technical assistants to the Life Carriers in the work of capturing, organizing, and manipulating the essential units of energy which are employed in building up the material vehicles of life transmission, the so-called “germ plasm.”

Planetary life-planning laboratories are situated on the second satellite of this world number two. In these laboratories the Life Carriers and all their associates collaborate with the Melchizedeks in the effort to modify, and possibly improve, the life designed for implantation on the decimal planets of Nebadon.

The life now evolving on Urantia was planned and partially worked out on this very world, for Urantia is a decimal planet, a life-experiment world. On one world in each ten, a greater variance in the standard life designs is permitted than on the other (nonexperimental) worlds.

The original life plasm of an evolutionary world must contain the full potential for all future developmental variations and for all subsequent evolutionary changes and modifications. The provision for such far-reaching projects of life metamorphosis may require the appearance of many apparently useless forms of animal and vegetable life. Such by-products of planetary evolution, foreseen or unforeseen, appear upon the stage of action only to disappear, but in and through all this long process there runs the thread of the wise and intelligent formulations of the original designers of the planetary life plan and species scheme. The manifold by-products of biologic evolution are all essential to the final and full function of the higher intelligent forms of life, notwithstanding that great outward disharmony may prevail from time to time in the long upward struggle of the higher creatures to effect the mastery of the lower forms of life, many of which are sometimes so antagonistic to the peace and comfort of the evolving will creatures.

Life Carriers are given a certain period in which life may be established on a new world, approximately one-half million years of the time of that planet. At the end of this period, indicated by certain developmental attainments of the planetary life, they cease their implantation efforts; they may not subsequently add anything new or supplemental to the life of that planet.

During the long ages (by our count) intervening between the establishment of life and the actual emergence of human creatures of moral status, the Life Carriers are allowed to manipulate the life environment and to “favorably directionize” the course of biologic evolution. And they do this for long periods of time, as they may deem necessary.

Once the Life Carriers have succeeded in producing a being with will, who demonstrate the power of moral decision and spiritual choice, then and there their work terminates— they may no longer manipulate the evolving life.
From this point forward, the evolution of living things “must proceed in accordance with the endowment of the inherent nature and tendencies which have already been imparted to, and established in, the planetary life formulas and patterns.”

Andon & Fonta the first human beings on Urantia

In general appearance and skin color the first human beings more nearly resembled the present-day Eskimo than any other type of living human beings. They were the first creatures to use the skins of animals as a protection against cold; they had little more hair on their bodies than present-day humans.

THE SURVIVAL OF ANDON AND FONTA
Perhaps the most remarkable part of the story of Andon and Fonta is a briefly and eloquently stated recognition (in The U.B.) of their having founded the human race, and that they have since survived onto and beyond the mansion worlds to advance upon their eternal careers as sons of God. And they have long been fully cognizant of the entire history of the race they founded here.

Shortly after they had advanced to our local system capital of Jerusem, they were granted permission to return to the first mansion world, there to serve with the personalities who welcome the pilgrims of time from our world, Urantia, to the heavenly spheres. They have been assigned indefinitely to this service.

(This short section in The Urantia Book is, to me, one of those particular instances where one is able to draw a profound personal conclusion, based on the fact that the writer of this passage— a Life Carrier— are either deluded beyond all measure to even pen such a completely deceptive and fictitious account— not only of who they are— but of the entire origin story of the first two humans— or, it is the truth— and it should mightily stir awake both your intellectual and spiritual integrity to honestly assess the validity of the entire Urantia Book. Good luck in your explorations.)

————————————————————————————————————

Note: This is a substantially abbreviated and paraphrased synopsis of the account regarding the origin of the first two human beings found in The Urantia Book; of necessity it omits numerous interesting events and important aspects of the entire account found in The Urantia Book.

In its own words, The Urantia Book constitutes “the most recent presentation of truth to the mortals of Urantia. It differs from all previous revelations, as it is not the work of a single universe personality, but a composite presentation by many beings.

“While such admissions as this may possibly detract from the immediate force and authority of all revelations, the time has arrived on Urantia when it is advisable to make such frank statements, even at the risk of weakening the future influence and authority of this, the most recent of the revelations of truth to the mortal races of Urantia.”
—The Urantia Book Paper 92: The Later Evolution of Religion Section 4: The Gift of Revelation • Written 1935; published 1955

Read The Urantia Book here.

————————————————————————————————————

Footnotes

1. The origin of the first two human beings has long been confused with the much later arrival on our world of the material son and daughter, the planetary Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve arrived on Urantia (from the year A.D. 2019), 37,933 years ago. They were members of the senior corps of Material Sons on our system capital, Jerusem, where they had been employed for more than fifteen thousand years as directors of the division of experimental energy as applied to the modification of living forms.

Material Sons vary in height from eight to ten feet, and their bodies glow with the brilliance of radiant light of a violet hue. While material blood circulates through their material bodies, they are also surcharged with divine energy and saturated with celestial light. These Material Sons (the Adams) and Material Daughters (the Eves) are equal to each other, differing only in reproductive nature and in certain chemical endowments. They are equal but differential, male and female — hence complemental — and are designed to serve on almost all assignments in pairs.

They are not invisible to material creatures like us. They are semimaterial creatures and, as such, are not transportable by seraphim. They must undergo a “dematerialization” before they can be enseraphimed for transport to the world of assignment. The transport seraphim are able to effect such changes in the Material Sons as enable them to be “enseraphimed,” and thus to be transported through space from one world or system to another.

Upon arrival at their planetary destination, the Material Son and Daughter are rematerialized under the direction of the Life Carriers. This entire process takes ten to twenty-eight days of Urantia time. It was this rematerializing process that was woven into later, much edited and distorted stories of the origins of the human race.

Adam and Eve are “biologic uplifters” of the evolving races.  Their amazing full story in The Urantia Book is essential reading.

2. Life Carriers are among the most interesting and versatile of the diverse family of universe Sons. They 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, even ages, to foster its development.

3. The Primates ancestors of Andon had learned to replenished fire which had been kindled by lightning, but never before had any earth creatures possessed a method of starting fire at will.  And it was a long time before the twins themselves learned that dry moss and other materials would kindle fire just as well as birds’ nests.

4. This feeling of intimate kinship was undoubtedly due to the enhanced mind ministry of the “adjutant spirits.”  These are the initial circuit-like aspects of spirit which are able to make rudimentary contact with nearly all types of animal mind.

5. “They were a wonderful tribe. The males would fight heroically for the safety of their mates and their offspring; the females were affectionately devoted to their children. But their patriotism was wholly limited to the immediate clan. They were very loyal to their families; they would die without question in defense of their children, but they were not able to grasp the idea of trying to make the world a better place for their grandchildren. Altruism was as yet unborn in the human heart, notwithstanding that all of the emotions essential to the birth of religion were already present in these Urantia aborigines.”

 

 

 

IS THERE LIFE AFTER DEATH?

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Laughing Jesus Life After Death

“What magic could death hold— the natural dissolution of the material body— that such a simple step should instantly transform the mortal and material mind into an immortal and perfected spirit? Such beliefs are but ignorant superstitions and pleasing fables.” —The U.B.

 

Life after death??  I’m not suggesting that human consciousness isn’t capable of surviving mortal death, it most certainly is. It’s just that dying isn’t going to add anything— except the realization that you have actually survived physical death— and, as enormous an experience as that will be, it’s still not going to do anything to make you perfect— in any way, shape, or form. Those of us who make it to the next world will be picking up our life right where we left off down here.

Human Consciousness
What do we mean by “human consciousness”? We’ll need to consider what our selfhood is, first. The “self” is really a summation of discreet components that make up any individual human being; it’s important and helpful to delineate and understand them to have any coherent idea of what it actually means for a self— a personal being— to survive death.

Those components are:
1. The mind.
2. The body.
3. The soul.
4. The spirit.
5. The personality.

5. The personality. It seems quite impossible to define personality, but there are a few things that can be said that many can agree with: Personality is permanence in the presence of change; it is unique; absolutely unique; and it responds directly to other personality.

Other things about it may be harder to agree on: Personality is a quality in reality that is bestowed by God, the source of all personality; as such it is potentially an eternal endowment, in that it can survive material death when it becomes permanently identified with the surviving soul.

Personality, in and of itself, identifies each of us as a spiritual being— since the unity of selfhood and the self-consciousness of personality are “endowments of the supermaterial world;” the spiritual world.

The fact of our human experience is found in the self-consciousness of personality, plus other-existences — other-thingness, other-mindness, and other-spiritness. What then, is human experience? At the simplest level, it is any interplay between a questioning self and any other external reality.¹

4. The Spirit.

There is a “spirit nucleus” in the mind of man, the indwelling spirit; there are three evidences of this spirit: Love; The spirit-indwelt intellect can be truly altruistic, and unconditionally loving. Wisdom; Only a spirit-indwelt mind can comprehend that the universe is friendly; and worship: Only the spirit-indwelt man can realize the divine presence, and seek to attain a fuller experience in and with this spirit presence.

All sentient human beings are indwelt by a presence of God. It is an immortal spirit— not a personality— though it is destined to become a part of the personality of the surviving mortal creature it indwells during this life. Our Spirit is a “fragment” of God— and everlastingly seeks for divine unification; “it coheres with, and in, the Paradise Deity of the First Source and Center.”

The Indwelling Spirits are not created beings; they are fragmentized entities constituting the factual presence of the infinite God, and proceed direct from the Universal Father, the First Source and Center. They are “undiluted and unmixed divinity, unqualified and unattenuated parts of Deity; they are of God, and as far as we are able to discern, they are God.”

3. The soul. There is something additional to the Spirit nucleus which survives death. This entity is the soul, and it survives the death of both our physical body and our material mind. It is the conjoint child of the combined life and efforts of the human you— in liaison with the divine you, the Spirit. It is the enduring self; the immortal soul.

This new entity of surviving value is wholly unconscious during the period from death to our repersonalization, and in the keeping of the seraphic destiny guardian throughout this season of waiting. We do not function as a conscious being, following death, until we attain our new consciousness on the mansion worlds; architectural spheres that are the initial, transition world home of all surviving planetary mortals.

“The human soul, when matured, ennobled, and spiritualized, approaches the heavenly status in that it comes near to being an entity intervening between the material and the spiritual, the material self and the divine spirit. The evolving soul of a human being is difficult of description and more difficult of demonstration because it is not discoverable by the methods of either material investigation or spiritual proving. Material science cannot demonstrate the existence of a soul, neither can pure spirit-testing. Notwithstanding the failure of both material science and spiritual standards to discover the existence of the human soul, every morally conscious mortal knows of the existence of his soul as a real and actual personal experience.”
The Urantia Book*

2. The body. The human body is obviously destroyed during the process of physical death. And the erroneous beliefs surrounding the death and resurrection of Jesus have contributed to confusion concerning the mortal bodies of humans are somehow reconstituted in the next life. They aren’t.

Recall that after his crucifixion, the human body of Jesus was laid to rest in the tomb, but it was not resurrected with his surviving, one-time human mind and his divine mind and spirit as the Son of God. His material or physical body was not a part of the resurrected personality. Jesus came forth from the tomb, but his body of flesh remained undisturbed in the sepulchre. He emerged from the burial tomb without moving the stones before the entrance and without disturbing the seals of Pilate.

He did not emerge from the tomb as a spirit. He came forth from this tomb of Joseph in the very likeness of the personalities of those who, as resurrected ascendant beings, emerge from the resurrection halls of the first mansion world of our local system.

Certain archangels — the angels of the resurrection — approached Gabriel and asked for the mortal body of Jesus, saying: “We may not participate in the resurrection of the bestowal experience of Michael our sovereign, but we would have his mortal remains put in our custody for immediate dissolution. We do not propose to employ our technique of dematerialization; we merely wish to invoke the process of accelerated time.”

His body of death was a purely material creation, just like ours; it was physical and literal; it could not be removed from the tomb as the divine form of the resurrected Jesus had been able to escape the sealed sepulchre. As the attending seraphim (and other types of beings) made ready to remove the body of Jesus from the tomb, preparatory to according it the dignified and reverent disposal of near-instantaneous dissolution, it was assigned to certain spiritual beings to roll away the stones from the entrance of the tomb.

The Resurrection of Christ Life After Death
“The larger of these two stones was a huge circular affair, much like a millstone, and it moved in a groove chiseled out of the rock, so that it could be rolled back and forth to open or close the tomb. When the watching Jewish guards and the Roman soldiers, in the dim light of the morning, saw this huge stone begin to roll away from the entrance of the tomb, apparently of its own accord — without any visible means to account for such motion — they were seized with fear and panic, and they fled in haste from the scene.”³

The non-material nature of the new form of the resurrected Jesus was documented by only of the gospel accounts, (as well as in The Urantia Book), where, during his first appearance to Mary Magdalene, as she sought to embrace his feet, Jesus said:

“Touch me not, Mary, for I am not as you knew me in the flesh. In this form will I tarry with you for a season before I ascend to the Father. But go, all of you, now and tell my apostles — and Peter — that I have risen, and that you have talked with me.”

Likewise, our new forms will not be bodies of human flesh and circulating blood:

The mortals of the realms will arise in the morning of the resurrection with the same type of transition body that Jesus had when he arose from the tomb. These bodies do not have circulating blood, and such beings do not partake of ordinary material food; nevertheless, these forms are real. When the various believers saw Jesus after his resurrection, they really saw him; they were not the self-deceived victims of visions or hallucinations.

1. The mind. Mind is a temporary intellect system loaned to human beings for use during our material lifetime, and as we use this mind, we are either accepting, or rejecting the potential of our eternal existence.

Mind is really about all we have of universe reality that is subject to our will, and with the soul — the spiritual vehicle of the self — will someday faithfully portray the completed harvest of our temporal decisions which the mortal self makes to accept— or reject the gift of eternal life.

The mind can know quantity, reality, and meanings; but quality— values — is felt. That which feels is the mutual creation of mind, which knows, and the associated spirit, which turns this knowing into reality.²

During this life, our consciousness rests gently upon the electro-chemical mechanism below— the brain— and delicately touches the spirit energy system above— the Indwelling Spirit. We are rarely, if ever, completely conscious of these two systems in our mortal life; so we must do the work of living in our mind, where we are conscious.

Our self-consciousness is really a communal consciousness: God and man, Father and son, Creator and creature. Human self-consciousness is also very much a quest:

1. The quest for knowledge: the logic of science.
2. The quest for moral values: the sense of duty.
3. The quest for spiritual values: the religious experience.
4. The quest for personality values, the ability to recognize the reality of God as a personality and the concurrent realization of our fraternal relationship with all other personalities.

The phenomenon of death
Human beings generally recognize only one aspect of death, the cessation of the physical life energies. But when we talk about the issues concerning personality survival, we should consider three kinds:

Physical death. The death of the body and the mind.

Intellectual death. The death of the mind. Whenever the “essential mind circuits of human will-action” have been destroyed, this is death— irrespective of the continuing function of the living mechanism of the physical body. The body minus the volitional mind is no longer human. (But according to the prior choosing of the human will, the soul of such an individual may survive.)

Spiritual death. The death of the soul. This kind of death is final in its significance— your existence as a being in the universe is over— irrespective of any temporary continuation of the living energies of the physical body and mind mechanisms. From the cosmic standpoint, the mortal is already dead; the continuing life merely indicates the persistence of the material momentum of cosmic energies which are doomed to a permanent end.

What actually happens at death?
At death, the functional identity of selfhood associated with the human personality is disrupted through the cessation of vital motion— i.e., brain waves. Human personality, while transcending its constituent parts, is still dependent on them for continuing functional identity.

The stoppage of life destroys the physical brain patterns of the mind, and this disruption of mind terminates our mortal consciousness. And the consciousness of that creature cannot subsequently reappear— until a cosmic situation has been arranged which will permit the same human personality to once again function in relationship with living energy. Any such “cosmic situation” is carried out by many spiritual beings who perform such relationships with our new forms and the surviving components of our selfhood, the soul, and the identity transcript in the possession of the Indwelling Spirit.

After death the body returns to the elemental world from which it obtained.
But two non-material factors of a surviving personality persist: The pre-existent Indwelling Spirit, (i.e., the spirit of God) with possession of the memory transcription of the entire mortal sojourn.

There also remains, in the custody of the destiny guardian— the “guardian angel”— the immortal soul of the deceased human. These phases and forms of soul, these once kinetic, but now static formulas of identity, are essential to repersonalization on the “mansion worlds”; and it is the reunion of the Indwelling Spirit and the soul that reassembles the surviving personality, that “reconscious-izes” you at the time of your awakening on the next world.

JERUSEM

Jerusem, (the largest sphere above, the headquarters of our local system), has its seven worlds of transition culture, each of which is encircled by seven satellites, among which are the seven mansion worlds;  (the smallest spheres surrounding the midsize sphere in the central foreground, above), man’s first post-mortal residence. As the term “heaven” has been used on Urantia, it has sometimes meant these seven mansion worlds; the first mansion world being denominated the first heaven, and so on to the seventh. (Artist’s conception)

Getting to the Next World
The Indwelling Spirit, (i.e., the spirit of God) with possession of the memory transcription, is perfectly able to transport the record of your memory to the mansion world where you are to be resurrected. Likewise, the guardian seraphim with possession of the human soul(s) entrusted to it are fully capable of making the long journey to the mansion worlds.

During the transit of surviving mortals from this world, the world of our origin, to the next world, usually the first mansion world of seven transition worlds, whether they experience personality reassembly on the “third period” or ascend at the time of a group resurrection when many mortals are reawakened at the same time, the record of personality constitution is faithfully preserved by the archangels assigned to such special activities. These beings are not the custodians of personality (as the guardian seraphim are of the soul), but it is nonetheless true that every identifiable factor of personality is effectually safeguarded in the custody of these dependable trustees of mortal survival. But as to the exact whereabouts of mortal personality during the time intervening between death and survival, no one knows.

The situation which makes our individual repersonalization possible is brought about in the “resurrection halls of the receiving planets of a local universe,” an enormous edifice dedicated to the process of mortal reawakening:

Here in these life-assembly chambers the supervising authorities provide that relationship of universe energy. . . which makes possible the reconsciousizing of the sleeping survivor. The reassembly of the constituent parts of a onetime material personality involves:

1. The fabrication of a suitable form. . . in which the new survivor can make contact with nonspiritual reality, and within which a mansion world variant of the cosmic mind can be encircuited.

2. The return of the Indwelling Spirit to the waiting creature. The Spirit is the eternal custodian of your ascending identity; this Spirit “Monitor” is the absolute assurance that you, yourself, and not another, will occupy the form created for your personality awakening. And the Spirit will be present at your personality reassembly to take up once more the role as an indwelling Paradise guide to your surviving self.

3. When these prerequisites of repersonalization have been assembled, the seraphic custodian of the potentialities of the slumbering immortal soul, with the assistance of numerous other cosmic personalities, bestows this entity upon, and in, the awaiting mind-body form, while committing this surviving soul to eternal association with the waiting Spirit. And this completes the repersonalization, reassembly of memory, insight, and consciousness — your identity is whole, once again.

The fact of repersonalization consists in the seizure of the encircuited phase of the newly segregated cosmic mind by the awakening human self. The phenomenon of personality is dependent on the persistence of the identity of selfhood reaction to universe environment; and this can only be effected through the medium of mind.

Selfhood persists in spite of a continuous change in all the factor components of self; in the physical life the change is gradual; at death—and upon repersonalization—the change is sudden. The true reality of selfhood (personality) is able to function responsively to universe conditions, by virtue of the unceasing changing of its constituent parts. Human life is an endless change of the factors of life; unified by the stability of the unchanging, eternal personality.

And when you thus awaken on the mansion worlds of Jerusem, you will be so changed, the spiritual transformation will be so great that, were it not for your Indwelling Spirit and the destiny guardian, who so fully connect up your new life in the new worlds with your old life in the first world, you would at first have difficulty in connecting your new consciousness with the reviving memory of your previous identity. Notwithstanding the continuity of personal selfhood, much of the mortal life would at first seem to be a vague and hazy dream. But time will clarify many mortal associations.

The Indwelling Spirit will recall and rehearse for us only those memories and experiences which are a part of, and essential to, our continuing universe career.

If the Indwelling Spirit has been a partner in the evolution of aught in the human mind, then will these worthwhile experiences survive in the eternal consciousness of the Spirit. But much of our past life and its memories, having neither spiritual meaning nor value, will perish with the material brain. Much useless memory will pass away as onetime scaffolding which, having bridged you over to the next level, no longer serves a purpose in the universe. Since we have a perfect guide— a fragment of God making these decisions— we may rest assured that the memories that really contribute to who we really are going forward in the universe, will be preserved as a living part of spirit consciousness.

But personality— and the relationships between personalities— are never “scaffolding”; our mortal memories of personality relationships has cosmic value and will persist. On the mansion worlds we will know and be known, and more, we will remember, and be remembered by, our onetime friends and associates in the short but intriguing material life on Urantia.

In so far as man’s evolving soul becomes permeated by truth, beauty, and goodness as the value-realization of God-consciousness, such a resultant being becomes indestructible. If there is no survival of eternal values in the evolving soul of man, then mortal existence is without meaning, and life itself is a tragic illusion.
But it is forever true: What we begin in time we will assuredly finish in eternity—
if it is worth finishing.

°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°

*The Urantia Papers constitute the most recent presentation of truth to the mortals of Urantia. (1955) These papers differed from all previous revelations, for they are not the work of a single universe personality, but a composite presentation by many beings.
But no revelation short of the attainment of the Universal Father can ever be complete; The Urantia Papers are partial, transient, relative, and practically adapted to our local conditions in time and space.
While these admissions may possibly detract from the immediate force and authority of all revelations, “. . .the time has arrived on Urantia [1935!] when it is advisable to make such frank statements, even at the risk of weakening the future influence and authority of this, the most recent of the revelations of truth to the mortal races of Urantia.”
The U.B.

¹ Put another way: “The mass of experience is determined by depth of concept plus totality of recognition of the reality of the external. The motion of experience equals the force of expectant imagination plus the keenness of the sensory discovery of the external qualities of contacted reality.” —The U.B. Are we clear?

² It is not so much what mind comprehends, as what mind desires to comprehend that insures our survival; it isn’t so much what our mind is like, as what mind is striving to be like, that constitutes spirit identification.
It is not so much that man is conscious of God, as that man yearns for God— that results in our ascension in the universe. In other words: What we are today, is not so important as what we are becoming— day by day and in eternity.

³ The Christian belief in the resurrection of Jesus has been based on the fact of the “empty tomb.” It was indeed a fact that the tomb was empty, but this is not the truth of the resurrection. The tomb was truly empty when the first believers arrived, and this fact, associated with that of the undoubted resurrection of the Master, led to the formulation of a belief which was not true: the teaching that the material and mortal body of Jesus was raised from the grave. Truth having to do with spiritual realities and eternal values cannot always be built up by a combination of apparent facts. Although individual facts may be materially true, it does not follow that the association of a group of facts must necessarily lead to truthful spiritual conclusions.  —The U.B.

Reincarnation: I Wanted To Come Back As A King, But. . .

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Reincarnation as a weed?

If you are really going to get stuck in an endless round of successive incarnations as man or woman, some kind of beast, or a weed, you might as well come back as a nice Sativa-Indica hybrid, right?

The idea of reincarnation originated in the observation of hereditary and trait resemblance of offspring to ancestors.

The old custom of naming children after grandparents and other ancestors was due to the belief in reincarnation. Some races originally believed that a person died anywhere from three to seven times.

This belief was is some measure a residual distortion of the teachings of Adam about the seven mansion worlds, the worlds that immediately follow this life, and that we as individuals move from one world to the next by having our forms— our bodies— progressively modified to reflect our spiritual progress.

Even in the times of Christ, there was a lingering belief in reincarnation; Jesus found it difficult to convince mortal men to believe that their souls did not have a previous existence. The older Jewish teachers, including Plato, Philo, and some of the Essenes, also tolerated the theory that humans could reap in one incarnation what they have sown in a previous existence; so in one life they were believed to be atoning for the sins committed in their preceding lives.

But it was the Brahman priesthood in India, who have maintained their religious hegemony even to the present time, that are largely responsible for the perpetuation of this devitalizing notion.

It isn’t new or novel for religious priesthoods to exalt themselves over the very teachings they extol. And the early Brahman caste sought to exalt themselves above all else. They taught that the sacrifice to deity in itself was all-efficacious and all-compelling in its potency.

They went so far as to proclaimed that, of the two essential divine principles of the universe, one was Brahman the deity, and the other was themselves— the Brahman priesthood. The priests presumed to exalt themselves above even their gods.

But they went so absurdly far with these presumptuous claims that the whole precarious system collapsed before the debasing cults which poured in from the surrounding, less advanced civilizations.

“The vast Vedic priesthood itself floundered and sank beneath the black flood of inertia and pessimism which their own selfish and unwise presumption had brought upon all India.” —The Urantia Book

This abusive indulgence by the priests led to a fear of the non-evolutionary perpetuation of self, in an endless round of successive incarnations as man, perhaps some kind of beast; even as a weed.

But none of these beliefs was so stultifying as the belief in the doctrine of the reincarnation of souls. This belief in an apparently endless, monotonous round of repeated transmigrations robbed many people of their hope of finding not only deliverance in death, but spiritual advancement to something higher and progressively more profound— in eternity.

In their efforts to save themselves, the Brahmans had not only rejected the one true God, but now they found themselves with a “hypothesis of an indefinite and illusive philosophic self, an impersonal and impotent it— which left the spiritual life of India helpless and prostrate”— from that unfortunate time, to the present day twenty-first century.

This has resulted in the relative destruction of mortal desire and human ambition. For more than two thousand years, many of the better minds of India have sought to escape from all desire, and this has virtually shackled their souls in the chains of spiritual hopelessness.

The modern day fascination with reincarnation is destined to be no less spiritually debilitating.

http://www.urantiabook.org/newbo…

 

You Will Forgive Me If I Speak Bluntly.

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Forgive Me If I Speak Bluntly.  Life has a way of wearing down our sharp edges, has a way of making life-changing decisions manifest out of the most unlikely circumstances. Maybe just such a circumstance is at hand. What you make of it is entirely up to you.  See if you’re ready to go a new way; an eternal way— that beckons you onward toward your own personal destiny.

Like all other mortals, you were born into this world totally ignorant of whence you came, where you are, or what you are doing here.  Very likely you began, at some point, maybe even unconsciously, to piece together a story, a picture that tries to answer these questions, and the more true information you’re able to incorporate into your picture, well, the more useful it becomes.

Basically we find ourselves as living, relatively sentient creatures, on a singular, tiny blue dot of a planet, whirling along at some insane rate of kilometers per hour through space, somewhere in the uncharted outskirts of an incomprehensibly vast spiral arm of a staggeringly enormous galaxy; which is just one of many billions of such gigantic structures in our current but still quite limited vision of what we are able to discern of the universe.

And even with substantial strides in cosmic understanding, the vast majority of us still don’t fathom we are all a part of an immense plan— a gigantic enterprise— an eternal project— which the Gods are supervising and outworking.  And it’s the very incomprehensible vastness of the undertaking that renders it impossible for us to see very much of it at any one time, and more poignantly, during any one life.  Essentially this means we humans are on the bottom rung of an eternal ladder.

If you know anything for certain, deep down you must know you’re a “person.”  Fundamentally it’s true because we each possess something we call “personality.”  Personality is easily among the least understood concepts expressed in our language, when it comes to understanding what we really are.  That’s true because current psychology really doesn’t understand yet what personality essentially is, not to mention the other critically important components of being a person— say them with me now:  body; mind; soul; and spirit.  Personality is able to unify these various integral components, and, through our many experiences and decisions, good and bad, we each create our potentially eternal identity as a personal being.

But, who are you?  When you carefully think about your identity— your actual self— you should be able to recognize that there’s no one else exactly like you, anywhere;  not in the eternal past, not in the internal future;  you are already eternally unique by virtue of the very nature of personality.  And coincidentally, that’s really the one invaluable thing you have to offer God— an eternally unique, personally unique, finite perspective of reality.  And the one-of-a-kind gift for willingly (or unwillingly) sharing your finite perspective with an infinite God?
Eternal life.

Are you seeing the bargain, here?

We are all children of an Infinite Creator.  Consequently, whether we know it or not, that makes us all potentially eternal beings. Whatever ideas you have stitched together of your core “self” at this point in your really short life here, it has to be far less than the magnificent destiny that is being offered you by the Infinite Creator/Father:  That of a creature achieving perfection— while actually climbing rung by evolutionary rung— all the way to the eternal shores of Paradise.

Still, you might reason, eternity might really suck— if there was nothing to do— if there weren’t a lot of astonishingly interesting places to see, things to do, and people to meet in the vast universe.  It so happens that the universe is, like its Creator, infinite— and therefore full of unending wonder, countless personal beings both human and divine, and utterly matchless, and endless, adventure and self fulfillment.  Here’s the most cogent clue I know of:

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
nor has it even entered into the mind of man,
what the universal Father has prepared
for those who survive the life in the flesh.”

The watchword of the universe is progress.  All that incomprehensible vastness beyond our imaginations should suggest to any clear thinking mind that there’s got to be a way to get out there and explore.  The great news is there really is a way;  the one proviso is, you have to want it.  Sure, it’s pretty hard to want something you can’t really know anything about.  Which, surprise, brings us right back to learning about what’s really going on in the universe from an authentically spiritual point of view.  The truly great part is, you can experience it all from your own point of view.  My advice is simple.  Read The Urantia BookAll of it.  And preferably before you are forced to leave this planet, Urantia.

You probably don’t have a real cosmology.  Yet.  But you need one;  every last one of us does.  Some people may have to relearn what the word cosmology really means.  Eventually “cosmology” must be personally redefined— by you— to include everything there is to know about reality, and the universe.

Let’s digress a moment. Although no human beings were around to actually hear the “Big Bang,” the problem-riddled theory of the Big Bang currently dominates “physical cosmology,” to the extent that many people may think the mystery of creation has been resolved by science, and that’s all there is to it.

Sadly, no.  But a true spiritual cosmology must try to ascend to the very pinnacle of human understanding.  And short of a genuine celestial teacher showing up and teaching cosmology to the masses, (yes, unlikely, but it could happen), the only source I know of for a relatively replete cosmology is waiting for you right now— in the pages of The Urantia Book.  There are easily many hundreds of compelling reasons why you should read The Urantia Book, not the least of which is it’s ipso facto the best equivalent of an official user’s guide to the planet you’ve been standing on your entire life.

I confess it’s difficult to explain how truly complicated a replete cosmological picture can be, because so much of it simply doesn’t even exist intellectually yet for most people.  For instance, the evidence for an intelligently organized and designed universe has yet to be discovered by astronomers;  the universe is simply too vast to either adequately observe, or fully comprehend.  That means all things that exist beyond our human comprehension still require some degree of faith to intellectually and spiritually ascertain.

Finally, that brings us to another interesting proviso.  While one person may have the utmost appreciation for The Urantia Book, and profit immeasurably from it, another person may simply not be ready to grok it all.  It can be likened to a toddler trying to comprehend a set of encyclopedias.  There is nothing wrong with the encyclopedias, or the child, but of course a young child simply does not yet have the necessary development to read them, let alone comprehend them.

I would recommend that motivated newbies first try to gain a good working knowledge of The Urantia Book with the assistance of a more experienced reader, if possible.  Most experienced readers are usually willing to share their hard-earned suggestions on how to grapple with the Book’s more difficult concepts;  and fortunately other readers are increasingly easier to find.

Another little tip.  Don’t be too surprised if one or more of your most precious preconceptions about the way you think things are in your personal universe, have to be re-framed, upgraded, or maybe even — ouch— deleted.  If it’s any consolation, those of us who’ve already done that will almost always swear it’s totally worth the effort.

So.  If you might invoke your slumbering desire and integrity to suspend any superficial obstacles just long enough to let the book speak for itself, I believe courageous and intrepid individuals out there could very soon be compensated with knowing the who, the what, and the why of your personal existence on a world of time and space.  And yes, consequently, be changed forever.  And in a way that you will come to know it in your very soul.
And if it should turn out that it’s not the most valuable information you can discover for reals during your lifetime on this planet, well. . . damn. . .  I’d encourage you to keep moving forward the best way you know how.
No matter.  I’ll see you in the next world;  don’t be late.