Spiritual paths and ethical systems
The Urantia Book, the Urantia
Foundation, and Urantia Fellowship
The Urantia Book is not a complete religion, like others described in this
web site. 1,2 It does not have a clergy, or
a creed that one is required to believe, or rules of behavior that one must follow. It is a book which has spawned two
organizations, now called the Urantia Foundation and the Urantia Fellowship. The book is used by
individuals of many religions as a spiritual guide. The readership is mostly
Christian, but involves many Jews, Muslims and other theists.
The book states that Urantia is an ancient name for the planet earth. It is a
large book with over two thousand pages and almost 200 individual essays that reveal
During the 1920's and 1930's, a Chicago psychiatrist, Dr. W.S. Sadler
(1875-1969) became very interested in an unusual case. Sadler had been asked to examine a
patient after the patient's wife noticed he was talking in his sleep, and seemed to be
speaking for various super-mortal personalities, called revelators. The name of the
patient has been kept secret and the exact manner of communication is not clear. However,
Dr. Sadler insisted that this process did not involve spiritualism, channeling, or
automatic writing. The contact personality was entirely unconscious (asleep) during the
transmission, and had little or no interest in the process when awake. The material that
eventually became the Urantia Book was received during the years 1934-35. Sadler organized
a group of interested persons, called the Forum, to review and discuss this
The Urantia Foundation was founded as a
non-profit educational and publishing group in 1950. It is administered by a five member
board. It has been publishing the book in English since 1955. 3 More recently, it has expanded
their activities to translate the book into many other languages. Their main
office is in Chicago, IL. However, they have branch offices around the world. 4
The Urantia Brotherhood was then formed. In 1996, the Foundation forced the Brotherhood to stop using its name; the latter became the Fifth
Epochal Fellowship in 1989. The Foundation relented in 1999, and the Fellowship changed its name back to the Urantia Book Fellowship. 5
The Urantia book was originally published in English, during 1955; it has since been
translated into Finnish, French and Spanish.
The Urantia Book contains four parts, composed of individual essays that its followers believe were contributed by
celestial beings of various orders:
||Part I: The Central and Superuniverses.
||Part II: The Local Universe.
||Part III: The History of Urantia.
||Part IV: The Life and Teachings of Jesus.
There are many concepts in the book which are directly traceable to earlier works by
human authors, including scientists and early Seventh-Day Adventists teachers. The
celestial revelators explain that they are required to make use of existing human concepts
The group believes that there have been four other major events in the history of mankind, which also contained
important revelation from celestial beings. The life of Jesus is considered the fourth. The Urantia
book is regarded as the Fifth Epochal Revelation.
Teachings of the Urantia Book:
The book covers a multitude of subjects including theology, cosmology, evolution, anthropology, and history.
Consequently, it is difficult to summarize its teachings. Here are a few selected concepts:
The world is viewed as one of 10 million inhabited worlds in our local universe called Nebadon. The book states: "1,000,000,000 years ago is the date of the actual beginning of Urantia history. The planet had attained approximately its present size. And about this time it was placed upon the physical registries of Nebadon and given its name, Urantia." 6
||God the Universal Father is the ultimate source of all things, and is also knowable as a loving personal being.
||The Universal Father can act in concert with other deity personalities in a complex association of three trinities, The Trinity of Trinities.
||The book describes a form of theistic evolution which deviates from the Bible's account in Genesis, Chapter 1 and 2. It also does not fully agree
with Naturalistic Evolution, as it is currently understood by geologists, biologists, and other scientists.
||Just as lower animals evolved into humans, we are destined to evolve and become spirit beings, called finaliters. The book details our long
progression of spiritual experiences on other, more advanced, worlds.
||The book teaches that an a fragment of God's spirit dwells within each person; this is called a "Thought Adjuster." Its role is to
guide the individual towards greater spiritual understanding through many lives on other worlds.
||The book corrects the Genesis account of Adam and Eve and the concept of atonement. Adam
and Eve did not "fall," although they fell short of their mandate to uplift humankind. People today do not suffer from original sin, and thus do not need to be redeemed by the blood of Christ. They are inherently children of
||The book counters many beliefs that Christians have traditionally held about the nature and message of Jesus Christ; it expands upon his known
teachings. They refer to Jesus by the English translation of one of his actual names: Joshua ben Joseph. They view him as the 7th incarnation of Michael
of Nebadon, the 611,121st Creator Son of God. Jesus is believed to have toured the Roman empire with two people from India in the years preceding his
ministry. He is believed to have died on the cross and resurrected in a morontial body (an intermediate state between matter
and spirit). As such, he was visible to numerous disciples before his ascension. He now is the sovereign of our universe, where he "represents
and actually embodies the personality presence of the Universal Father."
||Jesus boldly proclaimed the spiritual equality of women at a time when women were not even allowed on the main floor of
the synagogue. The book explains that Jesus appointed twelve women evangelists, and these women remained faithful even when his apostles denied
or betrayed him.
||The book attributes the following teachings to Jesus:
||"Prayer is self-reminding; worship is self-forgetting."
||"Worship must alternate with service, work should alternate with play, religion should be balanced by humor, profound philosophy
should be relieved by rhythmic poetry, the strain of living should be relaxed by the restfulness of worship."
||The world's religions are all beneficial, "to the extent that they bring man to
God and bring the realization of the Father to man... all contain truth." "The
Hebrews based their religion on goodness; the Greeks on beauty; both religions sought
truth. Jesus revealed a God of love, and love is all-embracing of truth, beauty, and
||True religion "is to know God as your Father and man as your brother. Religion is not a slavish belief in threats of punishment or magical
promises of future mystical rewards."
||Copyright status: The Urantia Foundation renewed its copyright of the Urantia Book in
1983. On 2001-JUN-20, at a federal court in Oklahoma City, OK, a jury declared
the renewal to be invalid. The U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the case. The text of the Urantia Book is now in the public
||Emblem: "The Banner of Michael is the emblem of the
Urantia/Urantian religion." It is defined in the Urantia Book:
"...the banner of Michael, the material emblem of the Trinity
government of all creation, the three azure blue concentric circles on a
white background." (53.5.4)." One version consists of a triangular white
flag with three concentric blue circles.
The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above
essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.
- The Urantia Foundation is located at 533 Diversey Parkway, Chicago, IL 60614. Their phone number is 773-525-3319 or
1-800-URANTIA. Their Email address is email@example.com
- Versions of the Urantia Papers are available online at: http://urantiapapers.freeurantia.org/ and http://urantiabook.org/
- The Urantia Foundation's website is at: www.urantia.org
- "About Urantia Foundation," Urantia Foundation, at: http://www.urantia.org/
- The Urantia Book Fellowship's website is at: http://urantiabook.org/
- "The Urantia Book, Paper 57, 'The Origin of Urantia'," Urantia Foundation, at: http://www.urantia.org/
Other information sources:
||A list of Urantia Book related websites is at: http://ubwebsites.com/ They list major
sites, introductory sites, locations where the complete text can be
downloaded, translations, discussion books, etc.
||A list of web sites that form the Urantia Book Readers United
Resource web ring is at: http://www.webring.org/
||Norm DuVal has a "Urantia Foundation Truth Site" at: http://www.freeurantia.org/ Their site is "dedicated to religious freedom, 'unceasing exposure' ...of
Urantia Foundation's sophistries, and resistance to Urantia Foundation's
religious tyranny and persecution against believers of the Urantia Revelation."
||A Urantia Reflectivity Circuit lists a directory of Urantia book study groups,
social gatherings, book reviews, etc. See: http://www.ubook.org/
||Locations of Urantia study groups can be obtained from the Urantia Foundation or from
the Fifth Epochal Fellowship, 529 Wrightwood Avenue, Chicago, IL 60614 (312-327-0424).
||Urantiabook.org maintains a list of study groups at http://urantiabook.org/
||A book which is critical of the Urantia Book but contains interesting historical references is: Martin Gardner, "Urantia: The Great Cult
Mystery" Prometheus Books (1995). Read reviews or order this book safely
from Amazon.com online book store
||The Fellowship of Readers of the Urantia Book maintains a very extensive WWW site at: http://www.ubfellowship.org
||UBtheNEWS is an independent project by Urantia Book enthusiasts. It
explains corroborations between the Urantia Book and subsequent scientific
discoveries. See: http://www.ubthenews.com/
Amazon.com lists a number of books related to the Urantia book:
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Copyright © 1996 to 2012 by Ontario
Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Latest update: 2012-NOV-16
Author: B.A. Robinson