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Emcee intro text

Welcome to Symmetry of Soul, an ongoing endeavor to grasp The Urantia Papers in a synthetic wholeness. Tonight, Paper 140, Section 8, Paragraph 14.

It's our arc: "Jesus Goes Public."

quote




Dr. Chris Halvorson continues to be our teacher, and we three co-hosts, Andrea Barnes, Kermit Anderson, and I strive to be able and willing students.

I'm Brad Garner, and we're so glad you've joined us this evening or in our archive. Please call up the text of The Urantia Book by paper or electronic means, and take a virtual seat with us as we seek new wineskins.


Notes on Paper 56, Universal Unity

Perfecting Horizons Institute's Friday night public discussion group studied this paper in October 2016.

  • Unity is about 2 or more phenomena being together as one.
  • But unity is a word with multiple usages.
  • Desire of the author: most sweeping, transcendent exploration of unity. But let us explore how unity comes into reality in an experiential domain and its complex coordinated processes.
  • As science searches for a first cause, philosophy searches for universal unity--for cosmos. The ancient Greeks knew that Universal Unit was there to be found, and one's life could be predicated on it (philosophically). They were searching for it.


  • The whole=The Paradise Trinity. The individuality of the whole=the Mother. The individuality of the parts=the Father.
  • Concerning The Paradise Trinity, see the [0:12].
    • The Paradise Trinity is the whole in actuality.
    • But Mother deity originates from the Paradise Trinity, and it is the root of experiential reality. And Mother Deity, through the individuality of the whole, is the origin of the entire celestial hierarchy (including humans).
  • See also [196:3]. A reference to Universal Unity.
  • So Universal Unity bookends the entire revelation.


  • The fundamental quality of Deity is unity. And God is personalized Deity, hence the opening sentence.
  • If mind is involved, then the Mother is involved (the Father is not involved with mind)
  • If there were only parts (and no whole), there's be no way for a material part (like us) to be related to a spiritual part (God the Father).
    • But these two parts (us and God the Father) are interrelated in the whole.
    • If they weren't, none of this would work. We couldn't have thought adjusters and a zillion other things wouldn't work.
    • Mind bridges the gap between matter and spirit, and mind is of the Mother. This isn't magic.


  • The Architects of the Master Universe are absonite beings.
  • Is there really a universal harmony? You bet, it's cosmos. It's universal coordination. If you stop knowing this, then despair sets in (because of thoughts about chaos).
  • A greater awareness of the big picture will help you with the art of detecting this universal coordination.
    • And this a great comfort: no part can be lost. From the top-down, things are perfectly coordinated, all those gazillion parts, including us!
    • We each have been given the potential to remain an individual amid all of this unity. But it takes our active participation.
  • A single purpose? See [Paper 118], very last sentence.


  • Synchronize with the Whole, or you don't exist. That's the bottom line. This is scary to on'es self-righteousness, but it should be! We are not God.
  • Source and Center... Source=Mother, Center=Father


  • The first four sections: matter, mind, spirit, personality, in order.

Cults

Secular cults are everywhere, even if we don't call them that. Cult films. Trekkies. Audiophiles are a cult (with money to burn). Those dudes who play Frisbee golf every Friday and are really into it. Fanatics of a sports team. No one minds this. In moderation it's cool. The problem is applying religious thoughts to secular things. Trekism would be a problem. Audiophilism would be a problem. Frisbeeism would be a problem (and darn weird).

We each have this powerful energy. It can be directed outward or inward. Outward it's called zeal. Inward it's a religious impulse (hence its etymology of "worship"). I myself like "render unto Ceasar what is Ceasar's, and unto God what is God's." The kingdom of heaven is within. I strive to not misdirect this precious energy.

This is a denotation versus connotation. Often the connotation wins, especially if its negative. The denotation of "cult" is okay, but the connotation is usually negative if it has even a whiff of a religious air around it.


The Stoic Human

  • Marcus Aurelius says: we can only control ourselves (stoicism)
    • There's no point in complaining about things you can't control, because it won't help.
    • No point in complaining about things you can control, because you're the only one who can improve them
  • Prudence: balance between existentializing (preserving) the past versus conserving the past.


A movie of Jesus facing death

  • Mark Erickson likes the idea and says we should talk about it.
  • A very different "passion of the christ" for sure.
  • Or maybe a play.

Notes on Grief and Stoicism

from 10/27/22 webinar by Classical Wisdom

  • What I'm keeping an eye out for:
    • The death of fathers
    • When death comes at exactly the age statistics predict it should
    • What are their production values like
    • Would anyone here be someone I could follow up with regarding Michael Sugrue?


  • Michael Fontaine, Classics at Cornell
    • Cicero, how to grieve
    • His website
    • Cicero was not a Stoic. He was an agnostic as we'd call him.
    • But in times of distress he clung to Stoicism, as do many.
    • "Excessive grief is beneath us. But grief within limits is natural and normal." --Cicero, paraphrased
    • Cicero argues we have a soul and there's logically a heaven.
    • Chrysippus "On Negative Emotions": When someone is in the throes of grief, use what they know. Don't try to convince them their philosophy is wrong
    • Mike says the conception of heaven today can be traced to Plato: the death of Socrates
    • We create art because we care about what happens after we die.
    • Cicero: a good Roman learns from his ancestors and role models.


  • Massimo Piglucci, Neo-Stoic, City College of New York
    • Ancient Sotics accepted Providence, most modern Stoics do not
    • Classic Stoics see us as a part of the cosmos-wide logos. A cell in a huge body. Sounds like Mother Deity for sure.
    • Piglucci is a "a modern scientist" who does NOT see the universe as a living organism.
    • Freud said an "energetic process" is used to overcome grief. A hydraulic view. No longer accepted.
    • Kubler-Ross stages of grief also not accepted in mainstream psychology now.
    • 5 modern conceptions of how to deal with grief:
      • low level persistent feeling
      • chronic grief (problematic)
      • etc
    • Absence of grief is no longer seen as pathological
    • Prolonged grief disorder is in the DSM. Over 6 months. Seneca describes this in his letter to Marsha.
    • Antidepressants not seen as helpful. but writing assignments are--write about your grief.
    • Most Stoics didn't believe in life after death, except for those who did. Seneca and Cicero believed in some kind of soul.
    • Opinions about the afterlife should make a big difference. But in practice I'm not sure they do. This is simply about breaking a human bond.
    • I asked: I wonder if a theistic/metaphysical philosophy can be rehabilitated and be brought into the modern mainstream. Or is it all secularism from here forward in the Western world?
      • Massimo replied: @Brad: my opinion is that it is difficult to rehabilitate a theistic metaphysics given all we are learning from modern science. But of course that’s a long conversation!


  • Donald Robertson
    • Kubler-Ross model might be over-applied. And it's not evidence-based
    • Venting of emotion alone isn't enough to help. But in concert with other techniques, sure, it can help.
    • What do we do in psychotherapy with all this? A conceptualization model. CBT is helpful
    • 3rd wave CBT (last 10-15 years): being aware of and accepting our thoughts rather than modifying or changing them.
  • Anya Leonard, founder of Classical Wisdom Substack


  • Explain more about "Providence" and how it helped with grief
  • Does a metaphysical outlook help with grief outcomes? If so, is there a metaphysics that can still work for the modern era?