Group: Pittsburgh TeaM
TOMAS: Good afternoon, my friends.
Group: Good afternoon, Tomas.
TOMAS: I am Tomas, your guide, teacher, companion and friend. I, as well as many others are here this afternoon in glorious rejoicing at your combined energies and motivations to endure, persist, pursue and secure ideal circumstances and situations which will result in your sustained happiness and faith in your own personal religious experience.
It is satisfying to your supernal guides to behold your application toward concepts which stretch your capacities, which stimulate your mind to reach beyond the conformity of your societal mode in search of more realistic planes of awareness and thus service.
In keeping with our format and with your permission I will proceed today to spend a few moments discussing belief, which, as you learned from your reading today, in part, is not the same as faith, but beliefs, en route to faith and yet greater faith, play powerful punches in your developing reality/religious experience and I would like to help you to recognize your individual beliefs so that you can put your beliefs in some perspective and appreciation for the relative reality that they are.
I am torn, now, in my format, for I would, on one hand, like very much to ask you individually to give me an example of a belief which you hold dear, and I know that each of you have cherished beliefs which are noble and worthy and which you would not hesitate to lay upon our table today, but I also understand that in the process of laying forth these fruits, the time grows long and, until such time as we have sustained stamina developed, I will forego that most enticing possibility for the dubious privilege of outlining for you what I perceive are some of your beliefs, for purposes of our lesson today.
The evolution of a morontia-ized soul undertakes myriad beliefs, many garments, to clothe the dangling and imperfect aspects of a developing moral being. The favorite one seems to be, "I believe in God," yes, and yet this is individualized according to each person's perception of God, in that, some fear God, some presume upon God, some create a God to serve their own purpose, some mouth the tenets they have learned from others' God or Gods, and yet a belief in God is certainly one which all professed believers put forth. More humanly, individuals will say, "I believe in love," and this, too, creates a multi-colored array of various beliefs, for love must be redefined on each new level of awareness and comprehension of love's realities.
That which was once a cherished belief of the child, that mother and father knew everything, provided everything put forth, was shot down when father and mother acknowledged, "My child, I do not know," and in the early ages bordering the developing theology, the child in this culture may have been encouraged to believe in Santa Clause, and in time was made to understand that Santa Clause was a creation for the delight of the childlike fantasy and not a reality at all.
In due course, the mortal believes that a marriage partner, a love companion, will make all their dreams come true, that once the beloved is found and secured, all things will be possible, and yet in even the most ideal romantic circumstances, the truth is revealed that the beloved is a mere mortal and is heir to those traits which would not be endearing to even the most loving and tolerant of spouses.
Many beliefs unfurl as life, in its continuum, prevails, and with each new chapter in an on-going life experience, your beliefs are modified and adapted to assimilate the new circumstances and situations presented. It is often the case that when your beliefs are shaken, when the reality that you believed would fix it for you come to be a mere shadow of a yet greater reality to come, you lament that your world is shaken to its foundation and you fear ever believing in anything again.
It has been human experience to lose heart in beliefs such as true love or 50-year marriages or masters degrees or home ownership or debt-free existence or even a God that suits your purposes, to your content. All these beliefs that fade away in the course of your growing awareness have been valuable in that they have given you impetus and have fleshed out your life's purpose, much like an actor who will assume a part for which he believes he is well suited.
He will learn his lines and find the appropriate props and invite his friends to the opening night and discover with each new performance new subtle ways in which to add depth and caliber to the role he has been given. His error is that this role is not his life's role but a role he will play until the curtain falls for the last performance and then the role-player must find yet a new role in order to find himself brought again to life, and this, my children, is the case for all human beings, especially those who aspire to play a part in life and not merely sit on the sidelines and watch life happen to other people.
I am here today to encourage you to accept the fact that you, in your relative imperfection, are still in a position of assuming roles to play, those which you largely feel are acceptable to your contemporaries. Indeed, you can all attend the cast party together and remark to one another about the flaws in the script and the delight in period costume and so forth, but all these words that I have outpoured upon you here have to do with your beliefs which indeed will change and grow and evolve over the course of time and I encourage you to, when the final curtain closes, to not despair of having nothing more to live for, but rather, to audition for yet another part in upholding yourself with a belief in yourself and in your purpose for being here on this stage of life.
All of these beliefs which you entertain are but stepping stones into your eternal perfection. Your faith will grow as your old and feeble beliefs give way to greater, more sophisticated, more in-depth beliefs that require more of you than the temporal happily-ever-after scenario. Your faith will expand as you discover your belief, which is your own intellectual configuration, be renewed in an evolved and more spiritized interpretation of those beliefs, which you hold dear, and which support you in your life's experiential mode.
As you understand your own beliefs, your need for beliefs, your approach to beliefs, and the understanding that your beliefs, although they may be paralleling others' beliefs are not necessarily the ultimate experience, it is easier then to accept that what another individual believes is true to them is acceptable to you, for you yourself have evolved your own beliefs, as they themselves have evolved their own beliefs in accordance with their own understandings also.
I believe I have spoken enough on beliefs for today. I understand you have questions of me. Whether they relate to the lesson or not is inconsequential, for I am delighted to once again be in this position that you allow me as your teacher, and I am appreciative. And how may I serve you, my friends?
Mrs. L: I believe last week you touched on something that I would like to review when I can read the transcript, but I was interested. You were saying something, I think, about not being able to accept your world, and I think that I would like to pursue that, over the weeks, because I don't want to be totally indignant about everything that I see around me, that I feel is undermining my grandchildren's future, and I would like to perhaps understand something about other people's belief system as my own because, for instance, could you help me when I try to understand and not hate the man who runs the Playboy empire? He has a long Italian name. He's a very … sort of a …
Student: Hugh Hefner?
Mrs. L: No, no. Not that man. This is Gukliomo or something. But these people who run these big conglomerates that prey on the lowest aspects of our society. I can get very indignant and this is not productive for me, and perhaps for others, I don't know, but I see it as something very non-productive for me to be an indignant person and yet, of course, I have to be honest! That's my reaction. I don't like the pornography that I see on television. I know that there is a channel on television that is full of pornography, and so I would perhaps like to understand the belief system of those people. Could you perhaps tell me, because you probably love these people, because you are so very loving, and yet I certainly don't!
TOMAS: I do not know these people, and yet there are things about all people which are loveable, namely their association with Our Father -- to the extent that that association is viable -- and, indeed, in the potential thereof, as well.
Your moral indignation is understood from your vantage point of high standards and Jesusonian ideals, but in order for you to find some peace in your heart and stop wasting valuable energy on flailing the air about your distress, if you would heal yourself of this rent in your spiritual garment, you might begin by considering the compassion of an elder sister towards one's siblings who have not had the advantage of being indwelt by such a clever and experience Thought Adjuster of such intellectual endowment as to make those decisions which have kept you yourself out of finding this sort of behavior an entrepreneurial enterprise a viable outlet for your own animalistic tendencies; further compassion to understand that your self-esteem has been nurtured and regarded in such light as you would find it unworthy of you to reduce your daughtership status to sell out for such shabby crumbs of love and acceptance as is the lot of many, many women and men on Urantia.
I would ask you also to consider economic potential, peer pressure, the lure of ego acknowledgment in one's society and, in perhaps an overall wrap-up, consider the overall problem that much of the old ways of Urantia are falling into disrepair and disrepute as the age of Aquarius rises; the old way is passing away, all things are becoming new, and in the collective unconsciousness, the masses are aware that the old way of fear and grasping is destined to come to a close and in its closure, they are even more desperate for what they can get from what they understand.
And last but not least, daughter and friend, give thanks to Our Father for the love which has been made to emerge and resound between He and ye and allow that love which you know in your heart to rain upon those of lesser fortune. This will eventuate in your beginning to understand your brothers and sisters. And, indeed, in coming to understand them, you may come to love them -- at least in sufficient amounts to not disdain your own approach to your fellow beings.
Have I approached your concern?
Mrs. Ml: Tomas, I have one. I was wondering if our prayers are doing any good for those poor souls living in Yugoslavia, Bosnia, Russia and where there's so much hatred and anger and where there's so much death and destruction. Will it ever end in our time, is what I'm wondering, and is there anything else we can do besides sending our boys over and taking their lives in their hands, and our prayers?
TOMAS: Thank you, my daughter, for your most provocative and challenging question, and I will attempt to respond to you also, that you might find some soul satisfaction in the distressing situation that you have outlined. I will say that I have no inclination to become embroiled in a political battle and, therefore, I will not get too caught up in patriotism and the like, but I personally find that sending young men into battle is not a solution to any problem.
If I may digress for a moment, let us say you have a forest fire and the fire rages and you send in firemen to fight the fire, but the fire is such that it continues to burn and consume even the firefighters. How long, you are asking, will it take for the flame of animosity, injustice and hatred and evil to extinguish itself on Urantia, and what can you do as an individual to alleviate the pain and suffering of those creatures who are in the wake of this roaring, raging fire which is out of control?
The deer and birds will flee in terror, to seek peace outside of these flames, and there is not much you can do but to provide hope for them by keeping your own hope alive, which contributes to the light, the illumination of spiritual reality on Urantia, as abstract and remote and perhaps impersonal an answer as that may be. I can promise you that the light of the Spirit on Urantia has been endangered by negative forces and we are here to help keep the light alive, to help you keep your lights alive, and we are making progress. We are upholding one another, and more to the point, we have begun to hold hands in a large circle of "Christian fellowship" which has reached around the globe. Do not for one moment think that these people caught in the cross-fire of these political situations, these primitive outbursts of control and authority issues, think not for one moment that they are not aware that millions of people are praying for them, are concerned about them, and that in fact the spiritual energies which are focused on them create a literal pocket of sanctity for them in which they may find comfort.
Remember that when you are stressed, you go to your Father in prayer, and whether it be in time of dire illness or the death of a loved one or hunger or famine or plague or want, your soul flickers to the hand of divinity which reaches out to you and you are sustained. In that moment and in that knowledge of truth you can walk many miles -- cold, hungry and torn -- none-the-less, you are renewed in your courage by that flicker of faith which you have extended to your Creator, your God -- that which you believe in.
Continue then to include all of your brothers and sisters in the spirit and in the flesh in your prayers, in the large and in the specific. Feel free to send specific prayers to specific individuals across the world in villages you are not even familiar with, but rather picture a child, love that child with Our Father's love, and that child will receive God's love and you may feel a party to its salvation.
There are many, many things on this imperfect planet which bear improving, but there are also many, many things on this planet which could be held up as exemplary of faith sons and daughters. I would ask you, in order to get to the meat of the problem, to pray most specifically for the tortured and dis-eased souls of those in power, for they are the ones who fan the flames which burn the forests of peace.
Mrs. Ml: Thank you, Tomas. Thank you very much.
TOMAS: And thank you for your courage in voicing your concerns.
Mrs. P: On the 31st of May 1995, my son chose to leave this plane. Several times in this life, previous to this, he left but decided to return after a few hours of coma. This time he made it final. There is something nagging at me that wants to know if he's made it across that great expanse into space and if he is as happy now as he was here.
TOMAS: I would request of you, before I respond, to share with me (but briefly) your understanding of your son -- not that I might understand better, but that you might hear yourself understand better who he is. Tell me.
Mrs. P: I'm not real sure that I've ever nailed him down. I think he's part of the Godness in the universe in expression. I think he's been around many times; not necessarily here, and I do know that he had an extremely deep sense of reality and Godness, probably greater than my own, but as to characterization, if that's what you're asking, I have no idea who he was, other than that he came to me by divine appointment and we lived together fifty-two of his fifty-four years.
TOMAS: He has not gone so terribly far, for he was not far removed from whence he came, and he is indeed supremely happy, for his religious growth continues to inspire his growing reality and his God-consciousness. You, my daughter, already know these things. I have merely confirmed for you what you have known in your heart.
Mrs. P: Then he IS around here.
Mrs. P: In a spiritual sense.
TOMAS: 'Here' is a relative phrase, for we get into the entanglements of time and space. In broaching reality, it is not necessary to go far in the flesh to go far in the spirit, and it is his spirit that we are referencing, for he has discarded his mortal tabernacle, and so the distance required for his next -- shall we say 'portrayal of reality' is just around the corner.
Mrs. P: I understand, because he keeps coming from crazy places and I know he's there.
TOMAS: You will meet again.
My children, we have had a double feature again. The capacity of your beings enlarged with each week, but it is not my intent nor purpose to tire you unnecessarily, but rather to stimulate and encourage your path of ascension. In some of these studies of the text you minds are bedazzled with truths and concepts, and then I come along with my analogies of cultural events and so forth, and indeed the feast of plenty enlarges to the point of total satiation. If indeed we are full, I will depart. I will pause a moment for you and I to sense if we have attained completion for this afternoon.
Mrs. Ml: Tomas, one of your students is not present but she did present several questions. Perhaps you can answer one of them today.
TOMAS: I am willing if you are willing. Select one.
Mrs. Ml: "Last night on a television show, we saw the stations coming in from Europe and it was very shocking -- total nudity and pornography. I thought U.S. television was getting wild, but it seemed okay to the rest of the world, Japan even. So is the United States and myself that puritanical? Or do we just have hang-ups about the body or is this a statement of the decay of civilization? Is there a lesson the world is supposed to learn?
TOMAS: Indeed, it does fit in with the earlier question, but only up to a point, for this is again a provocative question not unlike the other but reflecting upon beliefs, reflecting more closely upon your beliefs than the earlier question, and I am happy to expound somewhat and confess to you that, yes, your cultural mores are in your worlds rather puritanical, and the evidence of nudity and pornography are in great part a counter-balance to the prudery which is a cultural inheritance from the monarchy.
The human body is not in and of itself an object to induce shame. Indeed, the creation of the physical being is a miracle of creation, a work of art -- exquisite in its manufacture, and delightful in its variation. That your culture is so prurient, forces the natural swing of the human creature to peek and streak and lure in other avenues, and I could say that much of this decadence is the fault of those high-brows who find that even nursing infants in public is a shameful and sexual, therefore loathsome, act.
Yes, your country is Victorian in its approach to sexuality. The sex act, even in its naturalistic flavor, is not loathsome or crude; it is the beliefs of many centuries of mores, which have resulted in this very unbalanced situation today in your culture. Even in the European cultures (as compared to more tribal countries), the appreciation for lasciviousness as recreation is more honest and therefore less noticeable.
When, let us say, prohibition came into existence it was unsuccessful in spite of the efforts to keep liquid spirits quelled for moral purposes. The same is true for sexuality and nudity. If it were approached as a natural and healthy endowment of mortal beings, rather than an enjoyment that should not be enjoyed for the sake of enjoyment (which must be wrong because it is enjoyable), we would not be suffering many of these illnesses today which, I might add, include an abnormal amount of incest and disgrace upon the many mighty cathedrals and institutions of religion for indiscretions relating to a very abnormal imbalance of appreciation for that which is natural. I am not eliminating, either, the story of the fig leaf, which somehow puts to shame the private parts of persons who have somehow caused displeasure to some believed-in God.
I hope I have not ruffled any feathers here this afternoon with this response, but I am, even so, glad to have had the opportunity to point out that this moral value judgment serves no purpose in Our Father's Kingdom, and it does contribute to alienating brothers and sisters in the flesh through misunderstanding of true value. Anything further?
TOMAS: Yes, and I ask you, what is the purpose of birds? What is the purpose of potatoes? All things are not necessarily for a purpose. Are you inferring that the purpose of a woman is to have children and that the purpose of a man is to provide an income? The purpose of anything is in its being. You are asking perhaps how is homosexuality justified in a heterosexual society?
Mrs. McD: No, I don't mean to justify it. I have no problem with it. I was just wondering. Heterosexuality has an obvious purpose of procreation. I was just wondering why … why is it that it happens to certain souls? I just don't understand why that manifests. I mean there must e a purpose or a reason, I think. I mean, this is not a judgment on homosexuality. I don't see anything wrong with it. I just don't see any reason for it, either, in a cosmic sense.
TOMAS: Well, I will attempt to respond by reminding you all that throughout your eternal career, part of your experience will be to adapt to other human beings, other entities, as you as ascend along with them. The purpose, in those terms, of the six colored races includes the learning to accept and appreciate the differences in the races and the same is true for the various sexual preferences or inclinations of individuals. There are also many asexual and bisexual personalities that are more readily assimilated into society's mores.
Throughout your career you will encounter air breathers, water breathers, two-brain types, three-brain types, those from decimal planets, those from normal planets, those from planets settled in light and life. Infinite variety of colorful renditions of humankind and ascending spirit-kind will titillate you and entertain and stymie you and confuse you for aeons to come. This is part of the delight of creation and most certainly in your phraseology, my friend, I would be careful for one could say, what is the purpose of Mrs. McD and cause untold pain. We are all here for a purpose, that purpose being to express our Creator and to aspire to be more perfect, like Him.
Student: Tomas, before you leave, would you tell us if you've seen Christ Michael recently and what has he been doing, because you know him even more intimately that we do, of course.
TOMAS: I have indeed seen Him, even today. He has been among us here today and I smile when I hear you assume that I know Him even more intimately than you do, for you presume too little of your own intimate association with your Teacher/ Father/ Brother/ Michael when you assume he loves (knows) me better, for he loves you equally and knows you as intimately. I, like you, adore Michael. I am only a few rungs up the ladder from where you are and he reaches to all of us and walks with all of us in equanimity as we are able to absorb, appreciate, comprehend and assimilate his truth, beauty, and goodness to us. One moment.
MICHAEL: Beloved sons and daughters, I am Michael, your Friend. I have come to sit with you for a moment and stroke my lambs, my flock. How gentle you are to me today in your repose, in your humble obeisance to my shepherd, Tomas. You also are my shepherds in growing. You will also carry the staff of life with you as you walk the hills in search of your sheep. In calling to that sheep who has wandered away from our fold, be gentle with my lambs, you who are my lambs.
Student: Tomas told us how to achieve a more loving attitude towards some of those (with whom) we have differences, and it was very helpful, and I was wondering if you could tell us about the way you've been looking down on us in all of our shenanigans.
Student: Michael, we heard that if we could be but more simple, we could perhaps even see you now, since you are so much closer to us here on Urantia, and I wanted to ask you if any of our fellows here have seen you, even if it's been just a very brief impression.
MICHAEL: Precious ones, I have indeed presented myself to you all and you all have responded to me. You have in your heart seen me. In time you will see me even more, and you are beginning to see the Father through me, and in yourselves. I visit you, indeed, as the thief in the night. Not while you hold yourself in supplication of my being, but in your trust of my being. As you pass by, as you go about doing good in your own way, I go with you, and surely you shall glimpse me in the spirit and in the eyes and hearts of those we touch. Peace be upon you, my children. Adieu.
TOMAS: I am Tomas for one final remark before we put this to bed for the afternoon. I am appreciative of the many meaty remarks that were brought to the circuits this afternoon in your questions, for they each brought to the table the beliefs that you have wrapped around yourselves and your fellows. Look at your beliefs to determine how these value judgments and these behavior patterns relate to the pure affection of divinity which we are admonished to carry through in our daily doings.
Review your week now with occasional insight into what is a belief and how has that belief served you and how will you survive as that belief system is replaced by superior knowledge, wisdom and justice.
Deep affection I leave with you and commendations on your courage. Let me also say in parting that I have been with many of you this past week, in your grappling with acceptance and we have, some of us, made great progress. I look forward to our continued work together, play together, and indeed, camaraderie throughout eternity. Farewell.