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Is the Urantia book compatible with ACIM?
Yes, the underlying premise from most of the "The Urantia Book" is a linear view of the cosmos, complete with many hierarchies and specifics. In the last section of the "The Urantia Book", the "Life & Teachings of Jesus," Jesus makes a reference to this linear sequence of time which implies it is not true. I have used the entire last section of the parables of the life of Jesus with some ACIM students as a more expanded and closer approximation of the demonstration of divine principle than the Gospels of the Bible. Yet I would describe ACIM as the next deeper step toward experiencing the present moment, the Kingdom of Heaven within, which transcends all linear descriptions and metaphors. ACIM might for some seem to be experienced as a continuation from the last section of the "The Urantia Book" in that ACIM gives the practical tools for the mind to finally experience the reality of love by first seeing the unreality of linear time and space. The UB makes reference to another revelation that was yet to come.
I spoke with UB scholars at the first ever Urantia/ACIM conference at a conference center near Loveland, OH, in 1992, and back then a UB scholar said she believed that this reference was made to point to ACIM. Work with ACIM transcends the stepping stone of the "The Urantia Book" in terms of metaphysics by constantly pointing to the present moment as a gateway to eternity. For some the UB can be a step from the Bible to the Course. ACIM focuses on the necessary steps to forgiveness of illusion and awakening from the dream of the cosmos. ACIM, unlike the UB, teaches a nondualistic approach to God and truth, Which is forever pure oneness. I honor all the tools and steps the Holy Spirit uses in the Great Awakening, and both books were very helpful in my Awakening 'process.'
Urantia (particularly the last section) is a good stepping stone to ACIM, and ACIM is a very direct reflection of the singularity of mind and aims at transcending all dualistic, linear concepts (including the history of the past: the cosmos). I spoke at the first ACIM/Urantia conference (in Cincinnati) and addressed the "The Urantia Book" as a tool: a book of parables (Life & Teachings of Jesus) shedding light on Divine Principle (which ACIM points to very directly). Used under the guidance and instruction of the Holy Spirit, the "The Urantia Book" will not become another ego distraction of "studying the error" or "maintaining hierarchies." Oneness is extremely simple, and far beyond all parables. Stories have their place, yet they vanish in the light of love, the silence beyond the words and images. For those that have the ears to hear, let them hear. Rejoice in love!
The home of Joseph and Mary was a one-room stone structure with a flat roof and an adjoining building for housing the animals. The furniture consisted of a low stone table, earthenware and stone dishes and pots, a loom, a lampstand, several small stools, and mats for sleeping on the stone floor.
In later years, as the family grew in size, they would all squat about the enlarged stone table to enjoy their meals, helping themselves from a common dish, or pot, of food. During the winter, at the evening meal the table would be lighted by a small, flat clay lamp, which was filled with olive oil.
Jesus‘ entire fourth year was a period of normal physical development and of unusual mental activity. Meantime he had formed a very close attachment for a neighbor boy about his own age named Jacob. Jesus and Jacob were always happy in their play, and they grew up to be great friends and loyal companions.
And Jesus, as he grew up, when not at school, spent his time about equally between helping his mother with home duties and watching his father work at the shop, meanwhile listening to the conversation and gossip of the caravan conductors and passengers from the four corners of the earth.
In July of this year, one month before Jesus was four years old, an outbreak of malignant intestinal trouble spread over all Nazareth from contact with the caravan travelers. Mary became so alarmed by the danger of Jesus being exposed to this epidemic of disease that she bundled up both her children and fled to the country home of her brother, several miles south of Nazareth on the Megiddo road near Sarid. They did not return to Nazareth for more than two months; Jesus greatly enjoyed this, his first experience on a farm.
Seeing that Parents Don‘t Know
The first great shock of Jesus‘ young life occurred when he was not quite six years old. It had seemed to the lad that his father, at least his father and mother together, knew everything. Imagine, therefore, the surprise of this inquiring child, when he asked his father the cause of a mild earthquake which had just occurred, to hear Joseph say, "My son", I really do not know.‖ Thus began that long and disconcerting disillusionment in the course of which Jesus found out that his earthly parents were not all-wise and all-knowing.
Questioning the World and False Causes
Joseph‘s first thought was to tell Jesus that the earthquake had been caused by God, but a moment‘s reflection admonished him that such an answer would immediately be provocative of further and still more embarrassing inquiries. Even at an early age it was very difficult to answer Jesus‘ questions about physical or social phenomena by thoughtlessly telling him that either God or the devil was responsible. In harmony with the prevailing belief of the Jewish people, Jesus was long willing to accept the doctrine of good spirits and evil spirits as the possible explanation of mental and spiritual phenomena, but he very early became doubtful that such unseen influences were responsible for the physical happenings of the natural world.
John‘s Family Meets Jesus
Before Jesus was six years of age, in the early summer of 1 B.C., Zacharias and Elizabeth and their son John came to visit the Nazareth family. Jesus and John had a happy time during this, their first visit within their memories. Although the visitors could remain only a few days, the parents talked over many things, including the future plans for their sons. While they were thus engaged, the lads played with blocks in the sand on top of the house and in many other ways enjoyed themselves in true boyish fashion.
Communing with the Father
During this year Joseph and Mary had trouble with Jesus about his prayers. He insisted on talking to his heavenly Father much as he would talk to Joseph, his earthly father. This departure from the more solemn and reverent modes of communication with Deity was a bit disconcerting to his parents, especially to his mother, but there was no persuading him to change; he would say his prayers just as he had been taught, after which he insisted on having "just a little talk with my Father in heaven".
In June of this year Joseph turned the shop in Nazareth over to his brothers and formally entered upon his work as a builder. Before the year was over, the family income had more than tripled. Never again, until after Joseph‘s death, did the Nazareth family feel the pinch of poverty. The family grew larger and larger, and they spent much money on extra education and travel, but always Joseph‘s increasing income kept pace with the growing expenses.
As James grew up to be old enough to help his mother with the housework and care of the younger children, Jesus made frequent trips away from home with his father to the surrounding towns and villages. Jesus was a keen observer and gained much practical knowledge from these trips away from home; he was assiduously storing up knowledge regarding man and the way he lived on earth.
Love of Nature
Much of his spare time, when his mother did not require his help about the house, was spent studying the flowers and plants by day and the stars by night. He evinced a troublesome penchant for lying on his back and gazing wonderingly up into the starry heavens long after his usual bedtime in this well-ordered Nazareth household.
Form/Content; The Script is Written; The Accident
The only real accident Jesus had up to this time was a fall down the back-yard stone stairs which led up to the canvas-roofed bedroom. It happened during an unexpected July sandstorm from the east. The hot winds, carrying blasts of fine sand, usually blew during the rainy season, especially in March and April. It was extraordinary to have such a storm in July. When the storm came up, Jesus was on the housetop playing, as was his habit, for during much of the dry season this was his accustomed playroom. He was blinded by the sand when descending the stairs and fell. After this accident Joseph built a balustrade up both sides of the stairway.
There was no way in which this accident could have been prevented. It was not chargeable to neglect, it simply could not have been avoided. But this slight accident, occurring while Joseph was absent in Endor, caused such great anxiety to develop in Mary‘s mind that she unwisely tried to keep Jesus very close to her side for some months.
And this was but one of a number of such minor accidents which subsequently befell this inquisitive and adventurous youth. If you envisage the average childhood and youth of an aggressive boy, you will have a fairly good idea of the youthful career of Jesus, and you will be able to imagine just about how much anxiety he caused his parents, particularly his mother.
For three years, until he was ten, he attended the elementary school of the Nazareth synagogue. For these three years he studied the rudiments of the Book of the Law as it was recorded in the Hebrew tongue. For the following three years he studied in the advanced school and committed to memory, by the method of repeating aloud, the deeper teachings of the sacred law. He graduated from this school of the synagogue during his thirteenth year and was turned over to his parents by the synagogue rulers as an educated ―son of the commandment‖, henceforth a responsible citizen of the commonwealth of Israel, all of which entailed his attendance at the Passovers in Jerusalem; accordingly, he attended his first Passover that year in company with his father and mother.
Jesus early became a master of Hebrew, and as a young man, when no visitor of prominence happened to be sojourning in Nazareth, he would often be asked to read the Hebrew scriptures to the faithful assembled in the synagogue at the regular Sabbath services.