2005-08-01-There Is No Substitute For Experience
Topic: There Is No Substitute for Experience
Group: Marin TeaM
Prayer: Dear Michael and Mother Spirit, Tonight we want to thank You for introducing us to the spiritual idea of self-forgetfulness--the inner strength and self assurance that allows us to let go of ourselves and turn all of our attention outwards, where we can light up our world and perceive the infinite detail of Gods’ creation. This enables us to really be there for others, to meet the eyes of everyone we encounter, and reflect them back to themselves, with an assurance of their absolute reality in our eyes. Then best of all, we find ourselves, our lives, peopled with such wondrous individuals. So for this we are truly thankful. Amen.
- Experience (The necessity for experience)
MICHAEL: Good evening, My sons, My peace be upon you. This is your spiritual father, Michael, and your dear brother in this human life I shared with you. I ask you to keep this in mind during those times you may be tempted to wonder if, when the harder tasks before you seem a bit too much, when you feel the full depth of your being an experiential being, a being primarily of growing experience day to day; if you are tempted to wonder, is this really necessary for you to build up a potentially immortal soul? Remember that I too had to learn this way.
Though I have been Father to human beings on many millions of evolutionary worlds similar to Urantia, still I had to experience, if you will--from the inside out, what it was to be a human being walking on the earth, in order to gain the full sovereignty of the local universe of Nebadon and fulfill My potential as a Creator Son. There is just no substitute for experience. Which is why, from a metaphysical point of view, you can think of this as the reason why our Father chose to create this enormous universe out here in time and space, and then people it with beings as vast as those who create spiral nebula which will in time give rise to millions of suns and their planetary systems--these gigantic beings, all the way down to human beings. And then create this universe in such a way that every personal being has genuine, meaningful work to do to move the evolution of the whole affair one more step forward each and every day.
I know this is something unimaginably enormous to consider. As Mother Spirit reminded you last week, the cultural diversity on your own planet is far, far beyond the realization of any one person. You could not literally travel enough around the world in a thousand lifetimes, let alone one, to even begin to comprehend the diversity on this one planet. Yet We would have you feel at home in this enormity.
- Home (Being at home in the universe)
Friendship and love are of such a nature that two people by themselves can create their own universe and feel happy and fulfilled within it. Then even beyond this, you yourselves alone in company with your Heavenly Father and all the celestial friends you are surrounded with, you can feel complete and at home.
Consider how this is possible. We have suggested that the essence of yourself, a unique personality created by God, was created with these physical and mental and spiritual dimensions to engage all these corresponding dimensions of His reality. So you were made for this, and the full realization of the fact leads you home. And this is a dynamic and vibrantly alive, changing and growing home in which you find yourself. Every aspect of reality you encounter is growing. Material is constantly being created right within the seven Super Universes, which are in turn being prolifically peopled with a fantastic blossoming of individual personal beings, all the way from human beings on up.
- Soul (How your soul will grow in the future)
Then consider that aspect of God’s personality, the person-hood of the Supreme Being, who experiences all of this and grows with this experience. Let yourselves be a bit awestruck with the realization that, as you sit in your comfortable chairs on the surface of this tiny planet, this is all happening right now. You might as well relax and enjoy it. It’s real. It’s out there happening moment by moment, and so much of it awaits you. There’s a clear path from your life here on this evolutionary planet, all the way to Paradise, however many billions and billions of years of your time it may take you.
How unimaginably gigantic you will grow in your soul to encompass this experience. But you were made for this too. No limits can be put upon your personality and its potential to encompass all these ever increasingly larger dimensions of Gods’ reality.
As you traverse all the hundreds of very discrete separate stages of evolving from a largely physical/mental experience here on Urantia, to the distant time when you will leave our Local Universe as a complete spiritual being; think now of all the architectural spheres that are designed to lead you step by step through all these stages of your coming transformation. Think of how much of the Local Universe is devoted to the training of ascendant mortals. Think of all the millions of people who have gone on before you just from this one evolutionary planet alone. Stretch your imaginations and realize they’re still alive, progressing through all their schools and life experiences, all the joyful playtime and really good spiritual work, not only on the thousands of architectural spheres, but also on their visits to, and the help they supply on the millions of evolutionary planets. This is all in store for you, My children. And you are so constructed, so conceived and created, so capable of incorporating all of this by your very nature. This has been a whole list of reasons for you to feel very much at home.
Now consider the dimension of time. In the sequence of events, you may find yourselves looking for your home as if somehow, when you weren’t paying quite enough attention, it got away from you. You find yourself in new, perhaps even frightening territory, which may seem on first contact to be somewhat inimical to your wellbeing. You’ve all had this experience, because past the age of being teenagers you’ve all had to leave home just as the young birds are encouraged to spread their untried wings and leave the nest. So too you’ve had to spread the wings of your courage and leave home and go out into a very large world indeed. And you had to learn to make yourself a home in this strange new land beyond your familiar neighborhood or small town.
- Home (Home is within you—your soul)
Some of your most wonderful memories are of this time when everything seemed rather strange and, at times, more than a bit scary. But you found your way. You grew your abilities and, in the midst of all this activity, you became aware of something growing inside you. Perhaps you only touched on it briefly before you would lose it again. But there came those first intimations of something growing within you. This was your soul, and it intimated that all this experience was giving you the sure knowledge your home was inside you--whether or not you had any notion whatsoever about a Fragment of God being your companion.
So from time to time you would have this overwhelming feeling of being home, as if this somewhat strange and scary reality was nevertheless designed for you. This is not in any way to deny the reality of pain, or fear, or irreparable wounding, even mutilation which some have experienced in their body, and others carry in their minds, in their spirits, in their souls. For this was truly their experience.
Yet We have assured you of the necessity for such happenstance to be included in what is possible, to make absolutely real your freedom. You have a freedom to experience true consequences of your decisions, else you would be leading truly inconsequential lives. Think of all that is necessary for life to have real meaning, for each moment of time to be unique, for something to really be happening. How else could you set it up? And so finally and most fundamentally, it is this meaning of life that forms your truest home. This is the home you take with you. This is your assurance that in the eyes of God and your Father Fragment, nothing is meaningless. No matter what happens to you here, My children, nothing is lost. Your soul will grow to incorporate it and whatever trials you may have to go through. You will arrive at a point of such understanding, you will finally realize the totality and the absoluteness of your free will. You will be in such full possession of the entire meaning of your life--your complete soul, you will realize you would not have had it any other way: as inconceivable as this may be to you now. This is really being home.
If you have any questions or comments this evening, I certainly welcome them. I would always wish you to feel at home with Me.
Student: Dear Michael, I would ask for some more insight on how we exchange our minds for the mind of Jesus, or Your mind--what that really means? It seems to be offered with almost exact words in the Urantia Book, that we can exchange our minds for Your mind. I would appreciate help in that direction.
- Mind (How to have the mind of Jesus)
MICHAEL: Yes, V, you can think of this as a transformation of mind, if you wish. Indeed, this is what the bulk of our teaching has been pointing at. And We have tried to express in your language in many ways, the notion of being open, of realizing your human reality is not only continuing--shall We say, you have to learn how to get up in the morning, for you are facing a whole eternity of mornings—but that each morning is also unique and different.
Being open means, first of all, perceiving this difference and doing what you discover is necessary in order to welcome it, so that you do not anticipate it fearfully. You are not pinned down by apprehension, but you actually relax in the knowledge that a certain part of the future cannot be anticipated. You simply prepare yourself. This is the pursuit of truth. This is the pursuit of self-discipline and training. You do all you can to prepare yourself for the next moment, but then you relax. You employ this self-forgetfulness you mentioned in your prayer this evening. You’ve done all you can do and ultimately you rest upon your faith in God.
For this is His creation. You are His child and it’s in this opening, this relaxing into the future, that frees up the intrinsic spontaneity of your personality and its creative spiritual dimensions. This gives you more confidence that this you, extending into the future, is most closely like Mother and I in your creativity. You literally create yourself out of your problems. For as We have mentioned, even though there is an irony that your problems will get larger as you reach out to encompass greater dimensions of reality, so too your creativity can grow apace for this very reason.
Then too, your practice of stillness is like exercising this openness, this relaxing, this building up your spontaneity and creativity--independently of the pressing need of any particular problem. This is why stillness is not so much a physical/mental exercise responding to some material or psychological need, but it comes from a deep wisdom in seeing that, if you would approach Our kind of mind, you need a free-wheeling, independent creativity. Just experience this aspect of your personality all by itself. So it takes a degree of wisdom to devote yourself to this activity free from any immediate necessity.
These are two of the main ways, My son, in which you can exchange your mind for Ours, and develop intrinsic, potential abilities. If you would care to remember a word or two as a hallmark, think of "spontaneous creativity." As your Urantia Book puts it, "The evolutionary growth of the universe can never be exhausted in the infinity of spontaneity." Nor can your potential growth either. Does this answer your question, My son.
Student: Yes, Michael. It’s a creative and ongoing answer as usual, and it’s very generous and fatherly. I thank You profoundly.
MICHAEL: You’re welcome, My son. As We have advised you before: when you think of the future, don’t forget to put yourself in the picture. And now realize this future you will be developing the creativity to handle that enormous panorama I sketched out for you this evening. And be in My peace.
Student: Thank You—I’m sure it brings on the jubilee for my Thought Adjuster that much more near in the future. Thank You.
MICHAEL: You are very welcome.
Student: Father Michael, a friend of mine asked me what You and Mother have said about marriage. I said that Your relationship with Mother, the love and Your respect and the way You coordinate Yourselves was the inspiration for the human institute of marriage. Would you care to comment any more about that?
- Marriage (What marriage is)
MICHAEL: Well C, it’s certain Mother Spirit and I represent on a human level what you can think of as a polarity of personality, where personality is being projected by God in a dual, complementary way. As you know, this difference occurs even in the extra-human realms of the Material Sons and Daughters of the local systems, immortal beings above the human level who are, nevertheless, male and female, who have and raise children somewhat similar to the way you do. When a Material Son and Daughter came to Urantia as Adam and Eve, they gave the primitive tribal peoples of those days an example of two persons voluntarily of their free will submitting themselves to each other, and thereby being enabled to enter into a singleness of body and mind and spirit that far transcended a simple addition of their separate personalities.
You can think of marriage as something extra that is possible of occurring when two people so voluntarily choose to unite this way. The physical part does not have to be sexual, but it generally means living together--sharing space together, if you will. Then consider the interplay of two minds spending large amounts of time together, the kind of understandings that are possible of being created and shared. On the spiritual level they acquire the ability to, in a sense, share their souls, not only by pooling their experiences, but each being able to get a deep appreciation of another human being’s soul, their whole lifetime’s experience, including the times before they met.
All this creates so much more than what either could know individually, or even be added together, and this shared extra-reality is truly what marriage is. Of course, this is a spiritual definition of marriage between two free individuals. This, in and of itself, has been a recent phenomena in the long tribal evolution of the human race on Urantia. In fact, there are still large parts of the world today where marriages are arranged by the two families involved. But even here, though the two individuals may be somewhat forced together, even here there is the possibility of spiritual triumph, of these individuals growing with each other in such a loving way that they too reach a point of wishing it could be no other way; or say, accepting this arrangement fully as if they had planed it themselves. Does this give you some sense, My son, of the way in which one and one make three, and this extra something is truly spiritual marriage? Student: Um, I can see that two people can become one as far as unity of purpose and their life together, but I don’t understand the three part.
MICHAEL: (Laughing) Well, I was being a little poetic there. I was using some poetic license--marriage being more than just a one and one makes two; marriage being this something extra that is unique to the these two particular persons.
Student: Yes, Father, I can see that now, thank You.
MICHAEL: You’re welcome, My son, be in My peace.
Student: Yes Michael, I’ve been pondering, the past two days, my future and directions I am or I am not to take, the choices I am to make. And there’s desire to put myself into the future as various circumstances, and I wish there was a very real way to do that, to see the outcome of decisions that I do or do not make. For instance, these decisions or choice to carry on with the present relationship and move into a bigger place, and where that goes, in contrast to ending the relationship, or not being living together anymore, and seeing where that goes.
I wish or even pray for an insight of how I can choose--in a sense, using Christ’s Mind, the mind of Jesus, and the mind of Michael--to see what is the will of God for my soul and the souls of those that my decision influences.
- Creativity (The spiritual, creative dimension of making decisions)
MICHAEL: Yes, My son, I understand your situation. What you are seeking is very much a function of wisdom, and this is why it is considered Mother Spirit’s greatest dimension--as She said last week, very akin to your own soul which is this living repository of your life’s experiences. This, with Her help, is literally all you have to work with in projecting various courses of action into the future. Here it helps to realize what I mentioned to V, that no matter what choice you make at this time, have faith in yourself that you will continue to grow in your creativity, so no matter what choice you make and what situation you find yourself in, in the future, if you are faithful to yourself now in this continuous spiritual growth, you will find yourself capable of handling that situation. You will be capable at these future times of making the right decisions.
Student: Is there a right decision?
MICHAEL: This gets to My next point… (laughter)
Student: May I just interject something? Am I to be--since You’ve elaborated time and time again, that we are earning our souls--am I to look at my decision as it affects other people, or as it affects myself--to be put in the best situation to earn my soul and to be creative to the fullest of my ability? Am I to be concerned with the people I affect, or am I to be concerned with creativity?
MICHAEL: On this point, My son: I don’t distinguish between those. Since you are very much your own love and affection for others, this will demand of you that you take them into full consideration in every way in which your decisions affect them. This is not separate from your own creativity. First you wonder and try to imagine as best you can how these different courses of action will affect them. This is creative. Then as you carry out your decisions, day to day, there’s creativity involved in making things work.
But this is where the next thing I was going to suggest was: this is neither Mother Spirit’s, nor Mine, nor even God’s decision to make. This is only a kind of psychological projection--for you to wonder: what does God want me to do here? It’s too round-about dodging the point of: what do you want to do? Some of these decisions affecting your possible spiritual relationship with someone else depend at bedrock on what your desires are, what you want to do. This may seem from a certain viewpoint, egotistical or self-centered. But in your future relationships with another person--in any kind of spiritual sharing--it is this free will of each partner that is critical. This is the essence of whether or not this relationship will come into existence, spiritually or not.
And so, wondering what I would have you do, or someone else would do in these circumstances, is just a mechanism of your wondering what you should do. But even this is dependent on: what do you want to do? What can you put your full will behind? This part comes back to knowing yourself, now not so much in the sense of wisdom and all these persons you have been, but very immediately--no intermediaries--just you, now. Of course, this can easily be the most difficult question to answer at times. What do you really want? I don’t mean by that you have to give Me an answer right now. You’re definitely allowed to think about it a bit. (laughter)
Student: Well, You know I have asked this question in different ways to You and Mother for a while now, and I just want…thought about seeing myself in the future in various circumstances, in various circumstances and environments. But whatever decision is made, either way my spiritual growth is enhanced. It evolves. Am I correct?
MICHAEL: Yes. And because this is possible either way, you can take it out of the equation. Fundamentally you are asking about whether to join with, or to continue with a person. This is the essence of what you are trying to decide; all the rest is peripheral. As I explained to C, this extra something we’re calling spiritual marriage has carried men and woman through the most unimaginable difficulties throughout the entire history of the human race. This is what I meant by one and one making three. It is something extra. Spiritual marriage can be one of the most significant, meaningful relationships you will ever know. Student: But You also know that this relationship affects other people, siblings and whatnot. So it’s not as simple as just between the two of us.
MICHAEL: Won’t all of that fall into place if you two are solidly and spiritually united?
Student: That is what I’m asking, that is what I’m contemplating. That is the question.
MICHAEL: Perhaps this is what you are reaching for--a measure of your intentions or desire. Is your desire for this union to continue strong enough to carry all the surrounding circumstances?
Student: That is the question. And there are times though, too, where I feel my voice goes unheard, or un-listened to. So I tend to shut down, which is not healthy, obviously. So it’s during those moments of very great pain; that’s where I question my future.
- Decisions (Sharing decisions with your partners and friends)
MICHAEL: My son, consider that between any two people who wish to establish a true sharing friendship, which is so much a part of this spiritual marriage, there are moments of what I would call a necessary nakedness. You have an expression of, baring your soul. This is not easy for in doing so you are stepping out toward irrevocable or irretrievable confrontations and exchanges which will determine whether or not you and another can unite on a level of spirit and soul. But there is no way around this--for the very possible spiritual triumph of truth that people do know and experience at times like this.
This has to be shared with your partner, and such an experience can show you almost irrevocably which way to go. That is truly what is involved in such a confrontation and sharing. There’s no getting around it. As you say, sooner or later you have to get down, you have get nose to nose and see what’s what.
Student: We have done that many a times, but when--I’ve asked this many times before--is enough, enough? When--and I’ve been feeling this really inside me, my gut--when is…when you constantly see something happening over and over, and one has voiced their displeasure, or they don’t see eye to eye with what’s going on: but nothing changes. So it’s like I have to hold it in. I’ve bared my soul; I’ve shared myself. And I have tried to look at my sense of self-righteousness. Believe me, I have. That’s where my question lies, my ambivalence lies.
MICHAEL: Well, My son, you may discover through this process there are conditions for your future growth, and what you perceive to be the necessary growth for everybody involved; there may be certain conditions that--for you--have to be met. And these can be a kind of ultimatum for the other person involved. But if this is truly what you are, and what you see as necessary, absolutely necessary for all of you to continue growing, you cannot forever forestall presenting these conditions. For these are the conditions being dictated by your greatest wisdom, and not just some whimsical, arbitrary, capricious exercise of your ego. They’re what your wisdom tells you is needed in this situation for everybody to keep growing.
Student: And I feel it so deeply in my gut, in my stomach…very uncomfortable.
MICHAEL: Well, you need to think about this now and face the possibilities implied. Your sense of enough is enough is another way of realizing that the time is ripe now for certain large decisions to be made. If you’ve already approached a kind of ultimatum, and understood that certain things have been agreed upon; and yet, still find yourself on a kind of shifting sand as if nothing is holding of these understandings; this too has to be accepted then as: this is what has happened. I think we’ve gone about as deep as we can this evening without these realizations themselves slipping away.
Student: Thank You.
MICHAEL: Yes, My son. Continue to act with love and consideration. But ultimately you have to go with what you truly feel is the wisest thing to do. Now rest in My peace awhile.
- Value (Mind and spirit—meaning and value)
Well, My children, I think you are receiving and experiencing My lesson of this evening because you are struggling to maintain contact with your deepest sense of meaning--of what means what, sometimes what costs what, what is worth what. And so you are led on to the spiritual realm of value. Meaning, in the larger sense, points to the relationships between things. But beneath this and above it and surrounding it is the spiritual dimension of value.
So as you wrestle with decisions and weigh alternatives, this is what you are feeling for. What is the best way to proceed? What is the right decision? And you find it leads right back to yourself. Since so much is dependent on your free will, you find yourself facing this ultimate question: what do you want to do? You find, as you have this evening, this is not some arbitrary or self-indulgent, capricious thing, but one of the most difficult decisions to make. But you can rest assured that your sincerity in seeking this self-knowledge is what preserves the meaning of human life that is your truest and most fundamental home out here in time and space. This is the nest you build for yourselves out in this enormous, strange, and somewhat scary universe. For this is what makes the adventure real and worth living.
Rest now, trust in yourselves. Trust in your own creativity, your own spiritual power. And be in My Peace. [[Category: Marriage]