Episode:Evolutionary Religion—Later Evolution (Part 6)

From Symmetry of Soul

It is always difficult to induce evolutionary minds suddenly to accept advanced revealed truth. Man is an evolutionary creature and in the main must get his religion by evolutionary techniques. Even after an epochal revelation, all new evolutionary religions are merely advancing expressions of the old beliefs, new adaptations and adjustments. The old does not cease to exist; it is merged with the new.

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Keywords: Urantia, Religion, Spiritual Equality, Supreme Values, True Worship

Summary by Kermit

Commentary on the Review

SoS further discussed the final sentence of the previous week’s reading concerning the one time hope of the survival of Occidental civilization being found in the Hebraic concepts of goodness and the Hellenic concepts of beauty. The two elements of goodness and beauty with their superadditive consequence truth form the philosophic framework required for the continued development of civilization. Going deeper we explored the existential triplet of

  • truth
  • beauty, and
  • goodness (perfectness)

in comparison with the corresponding experiential triplet of

  • fact,
  • truth, and
  • goodness (perfectingness).

Connect the dots by listening to the archive. Following this we examined the dynamics involved in the connection between spiritual quickening and increased risk of danger for developing civilization. Again, consult the archive for details including how the principles of the Lucifer Rebellion figure in the process.

92:6.18 The Composite Religions (cont.)

Addressing the composite religion Christianity, we note the revelators refer only to the Christ and not Jesus. They refer to Christ, the anointed one (Greek for messiah) from Jewish theology. Additional teachings from Zoroastrianism and Greek philosophy were formulated primarily by Philo, Peter, and Paul into Christianity. Subsequently through many phases of evolution including Occidentalization, non-European peoples came to look on Christianity as a strange revelation of a strange God and for strangers.

We also speculated about the degree of foreknowledge possessed by Michael and our universe administrators concerning the out of the gate distortions to Jesus’ gospel committed by his immediate followers. We concluded that universe administrators were not surprised by these things given Michael’s radical departure from the usual sequence of divine visitations and the implications of his foregoing the sending of a Magisterial philosophic uplifter before his mission of spiritual uplift. These considerations led to further discussions on the misconceptions held by many as to the nature of celestial ministrations.

Revealed history shows that the early efforts of celestials in preparation for long term spiritual progress and growth are often characterized by challenges, obstacles, and tribulations of a disruptive nature. In trying times the child of God looks for divine rescue, whereas the adult of God seeks wisdom in adapting and adjusting to troublous times.

Islam is interestingly designated the “religio-cultural connective of North Africa, the Levant, and southeastern Asia.” This is somewhat more complex than just a religion. The failure of Islam to appreciate the concept of the Trinity is not surprising. The Trinity of Christendom is much like a quasi-polytheism. Mankind has had to wait for the 5th ER for the elucidation of the concept of Deity to approach a more truthful recognition of the Trinity and the numerous personalizations of Deity. Finally, the section traces the transmutations of ancestor worship, which was considered an evolutionary advance, yet its persistence in China, Japan, and India amidst that which is relatively advanced in Buddhism and Hinduism is both amazing and regrettable.

Our author follows this thread through veneration of racial heroes, and nationalistic religions to the various racial and nationalistic secularisms of the nineteenth and twentieth century e.g., Marxism, and humanism. We discussed some of the dangers of secularism in light of the spiritual quickening of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries with its emphasis on finding remedies to the outer and temporal life problems to the neglect of the quest for a genuine inner life. And so are we brought to the present emergency.

92:7. The Further Evolution of Religion

Religion in the world today is a product of evolution and revelation. New evolutionary religions represent advancing adaptations and adjustments to old beliefs. Revealed religion brings with it autocratic and intolerant theological egotism. The religions of our world are good to the extent that they bring man and God together. The revelators recommend that all religionists borrow the best in the living spiritual faith of their neighbors rather than denouncing the worst in their superstitions and rituals.

The creeds, dogmas, and rituals of mankind will never attain to uniformity due to the variableness of intellectual response to his identical spiritual leading. But because of this identical spirit leading man will someday realize a unity in true worship of the Father of all, for in the spirit are all men equal.

The focus of primitive religion was on material and temporal values. Civilization uplifts religious values to the service of supreme values. The quality of any religion is indicated by its loyalties, depth of meanings, consecration intensity and personality progress in spiritual living. From its origins in fear as modified by the fear or love content of the child-parent relationship religious meanings progress. Civilization, science and advanced religion must deliver mankind from the fears of natural phenomena as greater enlightenment leads to deliverance from dependence on intermediaries in his communion with Deity.

Transferring veneration from visible human things and persons to the unseen and divine is an arduous process facilitated by the ministry of the divine indweller. Advancing concepts of Deity as well as the character of man’s heroes profoundly influence man’s religious progress. Would that those devoted to the risen and glorified Christ could discover the valiant and courageous hero Joshua ben Joseph as presented in the 5th ER.

“Modern man is confronted with the task of making more readjustments of human values in one generation than have been made in two thousand years. And this all influences the social attitude toward religion, for religion is a way of living as well as a technique of thinking.

True religion must ever be, at one and the same time, the eternal foundation and the guiding star of all enduring civilizations.”

Notes by Brad

  • Superadditive consequence of beauty and goodness? Truth.
  • Only a sphere of philosophy can effectively frame an understanding of civilization.
  • Spirit, put in ignorant hands without revelatory guidance, will be destructive.

  • Notice how the Section 8 paragraph about Christianity omits the name Jesus. Yes.
    • It's more about "the Christ", a somewhat imagined notion.
    • Was this "Christification" of Jesus' teachings anticipated by supermaterial beings, including Michael?
      • Surely yes. This is how things go. Michael would have known full well the error that would result.
      • In fact, the first thing the apostles do after Michael ascends, error and evil enter into the Apostle's first discussions.
      • And Michael didn't micromanage. Didn't come right back, kick the door down, and say "No No No! Not that!" He let it be. He trusted.

  • Islam is not just a religion. It is a "religio-cultural connective," much like orthodox Judaism.
    • It is a synthesis of sorts, a way to bring warring tribes together in a larger context.
    • The mainstream must be evolutionary. But you can use your free will to establish a parallel stream.
    • The main evolutionary stream is putting new wine in old wineskins. By definition. Necessarily!

  • What are national gods?
    • Thor is one
    • But today's 21st century secularism is a type of national god.
      • Consider Marxism, a looming example. Its humanism is a type of religion, a secular outer life one.
    • "A shared question of the good life," per Hayden. One of primary founders of humanism. Who was contemporaneously at the University of Chicago as the Urantia Papers were being conveyed to us.

  • Secularism's rallying call: "Be of the age. Of the outer life. Reject the inner life (or there is no inner life)"
  • Today, "everything is a primitive religion." Even today's science is a form of primitive religion.
    • Creeds, dogmas, and rituals anyone?

  • New religions cannot be invented? Gee, I don't want to agree with that.
    • But that's the problem. We're confused about what religion is.
    • Yes, if it's a fancy outer-life construct, you can invent it.
    • At least there is (superconscious) genuine religion behind the scenes of the major "religions" enumerated here. And they all are evolutionary, none started from scratch.

  • [92:7.3] is a popular paragraph all religions are good "to the extent" they bring man to God, etc.
    • But do you really understand what they mean here? They're speaking of outer-life religions.
    • Real religion is "in the world, but not of the world," a time-tested expression.
    • The doings of a real religionist are not visible on the face of things. They do cast a faintly recognizable shadow into the outer life. And you can "know them by their fruits" using your insight.
      • But it takes real insight. Because there is true and false altruism out there, for example.
      • There are first milers and second milers. Only the second miler takes delight in cultivating.
      • If you're shouting about your second miler status from the street corner, then you're a first miler. Second milers don't get written about.

  • A pentecostal revival: 100% pure, raw, level of feelings. But sincere.
    • A shaman front and cetner. The performance art and particular mode of dress (that is expected). It's almost a type of rhythmic poetry, even chanting.
    • But he helps people overcome their level-of-the-flesh problems (emotional, nervous, and very material difficulties).
    • And amid all the simplistic "material prosperity" messages and cadenced speech, there were more profound moments.
      • The teenage girl who was told she can be her own person and doesn't have to listen to her peers.
      • Someone being told they will grow in wisdom if they keep at it.

  • "Level values" as in "steady values"--a relation to eternity. Watch the (later introduced) typo--this is not "level of values."
    • A week later, we talked about this more. The word "level" is almost always used in a sense of a hierarchy with multiple levels. Though quality versus quantity is in play here--God the Mother is a phrase that appears only once in over 2000 pages, yet is crucial.
    • Remember that a revelation isn't designed to meet our expectations.

  • Jesus the man was a hero. Imagine watching a movie where he's the hero, in the somewhat classic storytelling mode? A real man, with a real faith, that you also can have.
  • Can you abandon idolatrous hesitation? Can you fear not to change your life on a dime? Change everything?

  • True religion is not an outer life fact. You cannot judge it with your eyes. Only with insight. Try to explain this to a so-called atheist. True religion has nothing to do with outworn, discredited outer-life rituals.
  • Do you want to not be in the evolutionary mainstream? Watch your humility.
    • Are you shouting from a street corner about how unique and amazing you are? Hmm. Not very humble.
    • Are you wanting to be emblazoned on history book pages? Hmm. Not very "parallel to the mainstream," is it?
    • Do you need the solid anchoring of "your church pastor", week after week after week? Then you aren't courageous and independent. You're in the mainstream.
      • Which is ok! Just don't call it something it isn't.

  • So, where do serious students go from here, given this study arc which now is coming to a close?
    • Do we re-present Jesus to "man's hungry souls?" The valiant and courageous hero, Joshua Ben Joseph?
    • Do we strive to bring new adaptations and adjustments into the old, given this new?
    • Or do we focus on the parallel stream? Focus on religion being a purely individual inner-life fact?
      • Does this seem lonely?
      • Individuals in their own parallel stream are not really alone. They are part of a cosmic stream. Leaders can emerge from this parallel stream, to engage the mainstream. If the cosmos needs it.
      • Moses was not in the mainstream. He was in the parallel stream that Machiventa Melchizedek started.
      • If you find it doesn't take courage and independence, keep searching. A true parallel stream necessarily requires both.