A Simplification of the Foreword to The Urantia Book
William S. Sadler, Jr.
This document is a transcription of a talk given by William S. Sadler, Jr. to young people, clarifying and simplifying the teachings of the Foreword of The Urantia Book. Reset from the 1977 original by Asoka Foundation, 3333 S. Council Road, Oklahoma City, OK 73179-4410.
- I. Deity and Divinity
- II. God
- III. The First Source and Center
- IV. Universe Reality
- V. Personality Realities
- VI. Energy and Pattern
- VII. The Supreme Being
- VIII. God the Sevenfold
- IX. God the Ultimate
- X. God the Absolute
- XI. The Three Absolutes
- XII. The Trinities
Human beings are mixed up about what the words, "God," "deity," and "divinity mean. People are still more confused about the way divine personalities work together and by the way in which they are related. People do not have very many ideas about these things, and the ideas they do have are mixed up. I have therefore written this story to tell what we mean when we use certain words. These words will be used in the papers which we people from Orvonton have written in English for you people of Urantia.
We want to give you more truth. We want to make your ideas about the universe bigger. We want to help you reach out for more spiritual things. But it is hard to do this when we have to use your poor language. And we have been told that we must tell our story in your language. We are allowed to use new words only when we cannot find any word in English that will do the job -- even partly do the job.
We want to help you understand what we have to say. We want to help you keep from getting mixed up. So we feel that it is a good idea to tell you just what we mean when we use certain English words. This story I am writing here is the story of what we mean when we use these English words to talk about Deity. We will also say what we mean when we use certain words to tell about things, meanings and values that hold good everywhere.
In order to tell this beginning story, we have to lift ourselves by our bootstraps. We have to use these very words when we talk about them. So, this story cannot be a complete story. It is just the story about what we mean when we use these words in the papers. These papers are going to tell about Deity and the big creation. Some of the papers are written by my group -- a group of beings who have come from Orvonton to Urantia to do this job.
Your world, Urantia, is one of many worlds on which people like you live. Your world, with many others, makes up the local universe of Nebadon. This local universe, with a lot of other ones, makes up the superuniverse of Orvonton. The superuniverse of Orvonton is not all there is. There are six more like it; seven in all. All seven of them circle around a place called Havona. Havona is the central universe. Havona, the central universe, never had a beginning and it will never come to an end. It is a universe of divine perfection. At the very center of this central universe is the Isle of Paradise. Paradise does not move. It is the center point of infinity. God lives there.
The seven Superuniverses are growing and changing. The central universe is perfect. When we think about all of them together, then we call them the grand universe. The grand universe has people living in it. It has a government. But that is not all of creation. The grand universe itself is just a part of something even bigger. It is a part of the master universe. The master universe includes universes where nobody lives yet. These universes are out in outer space.
I. Deity and Divinity
The universe of universes has a lot of things going on in it. Deity is at work. This work has to do with matter, mind, and spirit. Some of this work is personal; some of it is not. But all of it has the same flavor; this is the flavor of divinity. And all of it is regulated so the different parts work together.
DEITY can be real as a personality, as God. But this is not all there is to Deity. Deity can also exist before and beyond personality; but humans are not going to understand this very well. When you get above the material level, then everything that Deity does will tie in, sooner or later. What pulls all of the work of Deity together is divinity -- at least that is the best way to tell you.
Deity acts in a personal way. Deity also acts in a way that could be called "before being personal." Deity acts in a third way that could be called "beyond being personal." When you try to think about how total Deity would act, then you had better think about a house with seven stories. Total Deity is in action all the time on each of these seven levels. Let's talk about these seven levels:
- 1. Static. We have to start with this level. Static means "not moving." You had better think about Deity on this level as being, rather than acting; as existing, rather than as doing something. But this is logical: We have to start by saying that Deity IS something before we can say that Deity DOES something.
- 2. Potential. This is the second level and it is different from the first. What does the word "potential" mean? It means that there is room for something. A bowl has value because it is empty; you can put something in it. Before Deity could do anything there had to be an emptiness which could be filled. In the presence of this emptiness Deity now has a plan. The universe (in theory) is not yet here, but the blueprint for it is.
- 3. Associative. Here on the third level we get the picture of personality coming into being. Here Deity achieves fatherhood. God becomes Universal Father of the Eternal Son. The Trinity is suggested here. God is no longer alone; he has associates with whom he can experience brotherhood.
- 4. Creative. On this fourth level Deity begins to act as we understand action. Now the Gods begin to share themselves with other beings. They begin to give themselves away -- to distribute themselves to other personalities. Now they begin to show themselves to other beings and to let creatures know about them.
- 5. Evolutional. Now Deity is expanding, growing out of the boundaries of the central universe. Deity on this level even goes into partnership with creatures.
- 6. Supreme. On this level Deity learns how to experience; Deity escapes from always knowing everything ahead of time. On this level Deity learns what it is like to be a creature -- to start out small and grow. Here Deity puts together what man gets out of living and blends it with what God gets out of being. On this level Deity works in time and space. Here, Deity does not directly rule the grand universe but rather works more behind the scenes -- works to coordinate and direct the rulers of the grand universe. We sometimes call this the Supremacy of Deity.
- 7. Ultimate. This is the last level of the activity of total Deity. One way of thinking of this level is to think of Deity pushing out into the future. Another thing that happens on this level is that Deity rises above time and space. This means that here Deity is all powerful, all knowing, and everywhere present. On the preceding level (the sixth) Deity coordinates everything that happens in the grand universe. Now, on this (seventh) level, Deity does the same sort of coordinating job, only now it is for the whole master universe. Deity acts here in a more-than-finite (in an absonite) way. This means having the last word to say and keeping everything running -- without limit. We call this activity on the seventh level the Ultimacy of Deity.
Now that we have talked about the seven levels on which total Deity acts, let's talk about three other ways of looking at "levels."
The finite level. Now, we are looking more at the levels of creation rather than the levels of Deity action. On the finite level we have creatures -- people like you Urantians, humans and other types of creatures. On the finite level things happen one after another; they happen in time. Also, you can only be one place at a time. Finite things and people may not come to an end, but you can be sure that they always have a beginning. They are created. You will remember our discussion of the sixth level of total Deity function; we talked about the Supremacy of Deity. Well, the Deity level of Supremacy works on this finite level of existence.
The Absonite level. Perhaps you had better think of this level as something in between the finite and the absolute. On this absonite level there are things and beings that have no beginning and no ending. Here also, things can take place which are not limited by time or space. These happenings do not ignore time and space, they just rise above time and space -- transcend time and space. We call the beings who exist on this level absoniters. Absoniters are not created; they are "eventuated." We could use a new word here, but perhaps "eventuated" will do. At any rate, absoniters simply are. You will recall our discussion of the seventh level of total Deity action; we talked about the Ultimacy of Deity. Well, the Deity level of Ultimacy has to do with this absonite level of existence. No matter where you may be in the master universe, if you see something happening that does not take any time and/or something that seems to be happening everywhere at once -- if you see this, you can be sure that it is an absonite action. You can also be sure that it is an act of the Ultimacy of Deity.
The absolute level. This is the third and last level of existence. It is beyond the absonite level. The absonite level transcends time; the absolute level just ignores time -- it is timeless. The absonite level transcends space; the absolute level simply ignores space -- it is spaceless. The absolute level is entirely beyond any business of beginnings or endings. For example: There isn't any time or space on the Isle of Paradise. Paradise is absolute as far as time and space are concerned; it is "outside" of space and "before" time. The Paradise Trinity (Father, Son, and Spirit) works on this absolute level. This level cannot be co-ordinated by any act of Deity that is growing by experience.
Whenever Deity acts on this absolute level then you will have happenings that are final in the complete sense of that word -- there is nothing beyond them.
Deity may be non-growing, ever-the-same (existential), as in the Eternal Son. Deity may be growing by experience, changing (experiential), as in the Supreme Being. Deity may be made up of a grouping together of many divine creators (associative) as in God the Sevenfold. Deity may be a complete oneness (undivided) as in the case of the Paradise Trinity.
Everything that you would recognize (and more) as divine comes from Deity. It is always the nature of Deity to be divine. But something can be divine and still not be Deity. But even if it is not Deity, it will be related to Deity and it will always try to get closer to Deity in a spiritual, mindal, or personal way.
DIVINITY is the flavor of Deity. All acts of Deity are divine. It is this divinity that makes sure that all Deity acts will work together, never in opposition.
As human beings would understand divinity, it is truth, beauty, and goodness. When personality shows divinity, it appears as love, mercy, and ministry. But when Deity does not act as personality (as in the Trinity) then divinity is revealed as justice, power, and sovereignty.
Divinity may be perfect and complete; this is the way it is when a Paradise Creator acts. Divinity may also be imperfect; this is the way it appears down on your level of creature existence. Divinity may be relative -- neither perfect nor imperfect; this is the way it is on certain in-between levels. The central universe of Havona is just such an in-between level; it is not absolutely perfect like the Isle of Paradise, neither is it incomplete and imperfect as are the evolving superuniverses.
When we try to think about perfection, then we discover that here are a number of possible combinations. There is absolute perfection, there is relative perfection, and then there is imperfection. These can be combined in seven possible ways:
- 1. Absolute perfection.
- 2. Some absolute perfection and some relative perfection.
- 3. All three in combination - absolute, relative, and imperfect.
- 4. Some absolute perfection, some imperfection.
- 5. Relative perfection.
- 6. Some relative perfection, some imperfection.
- 7. Imperfection.
Human beings like you are always reaching for words to describe God. You have ideas about moral duty. You also have ideals about spiritual worth. When you put these two together you have something that is hard to describe in words.
If you think very much about the universe, you soon get the idea that someone started it. And soon after, you get the further idea that nothing started the "someone who started the universe." This someone-who-started-everything, this First Cause, is God. God is the Universal Father. He acts without limit, in infinity. But what we want to tell you about now is how he acts with limit: how he acts as a personality, how he acts in a less-than-infinite way, and how he acts to show forth, not absolute divinity, but relative divinity. From these viewpoints we can talk about his actions on three levels:
- 1. Prepersonal. When God detaches a piece of himself, he makes a Thought Adjuster. The Adjuster is not a person and God is not "father" of such an Adjuster. Persons are fathers only of other persons. God is the "source" of the Adjuster but not the father of the Adjuster. This is a good illustration of how God acts in a prepersonal way.
- 2. Personal. God is father of all personalities. This is true of both created beings (like angels) and of procreated beings (like humans). When God acts in relation to a person then he is working on this second level. When God loves man, such an act of love takes place on this level.
- 3. Superpersonal. On this level God is relating himself to beings who are more than finite. Such absonite beings are more than personalities.
God is a word which we never use unless we mean Deity personality in one way or another. Deity has many levels of personal action. The word God has to be defined differently for each of these levels. It must also be further defined within each of these levels. The word God is used not only to mean the Universal Father, but also to mean co-ordinate and subordinate Deity personalities. For example, the word God could be used to designate the Paradise Creator Sons -- the local universe fathers.
The term God, as we make use of it, may be understood:
- A. By designation, as when we say God the Father.
- B. By context. Here, the other words in the sentence will make it clear as to just whom we are talking about. But if there is any doubt about what we mean, then let the word God stand for the Universal Father.
The word God is smaller than the word Deity. God always means personality. Deity may refer to personality or it may not.
The word GOD is used in these papers with the following meanings:
- 1. God the Father -- Creator, Controller, and Upholder. The Universal Father, the First Person of Deity.
- 2. God the Son. Co-ordinate Creator, Spirit Controller, and Spiritual Administrator. The Eternal Son, the Second Person of Deity.
- 3. God the Spirit. Conjoint Actor, Universal Integrator, and Mind Bestower. The Infinite Spirit, the Third Person of Deity.
- 4. God the Supreme. This is the finite God. He has a beginning and he is growing in time and space. God the Supreme is putting together all of the experiences of creators and creatures in time and space. He is blending and unifying this experience. He is tying all this experience together. He is Deity-like and yet he is creature-like, evolutionary and growing. This putting together of all these things is a personal achievement of the Supreme Being.
- 5. God the Sevenfold. Wherever you find Deity personality working in time and space, there you have found God the Sevenfold. This is the Father, Son, and Spirit working with their creative associates in the grand universe. These combined activities all add up into the Supreme Being. The Supreme Being is personally building his sovereign power out of these activities of God the Sevenfold. This growing Supreme Being is becoming the first complete revelation of Deity in time and space. God the Sevenfold works in the grand universe. There are two related streams of personality movement in the grand universe. Out from Paradise comes a descending stream of perfect personalities. In toward Paradise flows the stream of ascending creatures.
- 6. God the Ultimate. The Supreme Being evolves; the Ultimate "eventuates." (Remember the word "eventuate" in the discussion of the absonite beings who are not created -- they simply are!) God the Ultimate works in relation to, but outside of, time and space. He works in supertime and transcended space. The Supreme is the first revelation of Deity unity in time and space; the Ultimate is the second. If you want to try to think about what this means, you have to think big. The completed growth of God the Ultimate awaits the completed growth of at least the master universe. This means the completion of everything finite and everything absonite.
- 7. God the Absolute. Absonite beings are superpersonal; they have a relationship to God the Ultimate. But these absoniters would have to become super-superpersonal to have a similar relationship to God the Absolute. That is what we mean by the expression "transcended superpersonal values." The Supreme represents a first level of unifying Deity expression and expansion; the Ultimate a second such level; God the Absolute represents a third and final such level. God the Absolute would be experiencible; but he is not now present in this sense. He is, however, existent as the (non-experiencible) Deity Absolute. This third level (the level of God the Absolute) is the end of the line as far as Deity growth and expansion are concerned. There isn't anything more to personalize. There is no more divinity left over. God has fully revealed himself. Beyond this level we go beyond Deity itself. Beyond this level we encounter something outside of Deity; we encounter the Unqualified Absolute.
III. The First Source and Center
If you look at everything that is (was, or will be), it adds up, in the last analysis, to seven kinds of reality; it adds up to the seven equal Absolutes:
- 1. The First Source and Center.
- 2. The Second Source and Center.
- 3. The Third Source and Center.
- 4. The Isle of Paradise.
- 5. The Deity Absolute.
- 6. The Universal Absolute.
- 7. The Unqualified Absolute.
God, as the First Source and Center, is really first. There is simply no exception to this statement. The First Source and Center is infinite as well as eternal. The only thing that in any way limits him is his own free will.
God, the Universal Father, is the personality of the First Source and Center. As such, he maintains personal relations with all coordinate and subordinate sources and centers. He also exercises infinite control over them. He may never have to use this control. Why should he? These associated sources and centers work in flawless perfection. But the final control is there, just the same, even though it may never be used.
The First Source and Center is really first, everywhere. It doesn't make any difference whether it is in the realm of Deity action or outside this domain; personal or impersonal activities; working with things that are in existence, or with things yet to be; working down on the finite level or up on the infinite. Everything, simply everything, depends for its existence directly or indirectly on the First Source and Center.
The First Source and Center is related to the universe in the following different ways:
- 1. The Physical Universe. The gravity that holds the material creation together is tied in to the under surface of the Isle of Paradise. This is the gravity center for the universe of universes. For this reason, the person of the Father never moves in relation to this gravity center. But the gravity center is on the nether or material side of Paradise. The Father lives on the upper or spiritual side of Paradise.
- 2. The Intellectual Universe. The mind forces of the universes come together (finally) in the Infinite Spirit. But there are also secondary mind centers. The kind of mind that operates in the superuniverses (the cosmic mind) centers in the Seven Master Spirits. The developing mind of the Supreme Being centers in Majeston on Paradise. (Majeston is the Paradise chief of reflectivity.)
- 3. The Spiritual Universe. All universe spirit forces come together in the person of the Eternal Son.
- 4. Capacity for Action. The Deity Absolute provides for unlimited room or capacity for all future activities on the part of Deity.
- 5. Infinity Response. There is no end to the extent to which infinity can respond to Deity action. This unlimited capacity to respond exists in the Unqualified Absolute.
- 6. Unified Action-Response. The Universal Absolute perfectly balances and co-ordinates the other two Absolutes. The Deity Absolute is the Qualified Absolute; qualified in the sense of having been set apart from the other Absolute -- the Unqualified Absolute.
- 7. The Personality universe. All personalities (moral beings) are directly related to the personality of the Universal Father.
REALITY is not very well understood by human beings -- even by finite beings much above the human level. What you think of as reality is far from the whole story. Even when you think of Deity, you cannot understand it. The most of Deity that you ever will really understand is the Supreme Being. Just the same, there is a whole lot that is behind the Supreme Being. These things which existed before the Supreme Being are eternal realities and superfinite realities. We want to tell you something about these eternal and superfinite realities. But in trying to talk about these things with you we run into difficulties. We are talking about things outside of time and space but we have to use your time and space language to talk about them. So, we have to tell about the happenings of eternity as though they had taken place in time. We have to distort our story, but if we do not do this then we can tell you nothing at all.
As a human being would look at the way things originally got started, it happened this way: The I AM was, so to speak, imprisoned by infinity. He could not command because there was no "obeyer of commands." So, he moves away from a part of infinity. This changes the picture. Now we have two parts of infinity. We have the part he moves into and the part he moves away from. The part he moves into, he changed; he changed it by moving into it; this is the Qualified Absolute part of infinity. This is the part of infinity that commands. The part of infinity he did not move into, he did not change; this is the Unqualified Absolute part of infinity; this is the "obeyer of commands." The Qualified Absolute is (at this point) total Deity, the "giver of commands." The Unqualified Absolute is total non-Deity, the "obeyer of commands." This dividing of infinity into two parts produces a tension, a strain. This tension is relaxed by the appearance of the Universal Absolute (the third Absolute). The Universal Absolute still acts to equalize the tension between the two parts of infinity -- the part that the I AM moved into, and the part that the I AM moved away from.
But the I AM did not stop here. Up to this point he is the Absolute Person. Now he separates himself from the Absolute Personality; he thus becomes Father to the Absolute Personality. The Absolute Personality accordingly becomes the Eternal Son of the Universal Father. While all this was going on, the Father built the absolute machine -- the Isle of Paradise.
Now we have the Father and Son resident on the Isle of Paradise. The stage is set for creation. The first creative act of the Father-Son personalizes as the Infinite Spirit and materializes as the central universe of Havona. Now has the Father completed his escape from the fetters of infinity. He has not only escaped from total infinity but also from total Deity.
The Son and the Spirit are now with him in filling up the whole of total Deity. When the Father joins the Son and the Spirit in the Paradise Trinity, then as the Trinity they do fill all of Deity. And having done this, the Father then set about to add to Deity. He set in motion growth, evolution, and experience so that additional Deity could appear -- Supreme, Ultimate, and Absolute Deity.
The concept of the I AM, however helpful, is hardly factual, But you need this concept. You need it because you cannot think outside of time, or space, or finite realities. You cannot understand eternity. You carrot grasp something that has no beginning and no ending. To a human being, everything has to have a start. That is, everything except the ONE UNCAUSED -- the original cause of all other causes. So we give you this concept of the I AM. We tell you this story of a time when the I AM was completely alone. But now we must add to the story: The Eternal Son and the Infinite Spirit are just as eternal as is the Universal Father; no more so and not less so. In other words, there never was a time when the I AM was not the Father of the Son and, with him, of the Spirit.
The Infinite. This term has real meaning; it is not a concession to the limitations of your thinking. We use it when we want to suggest the unlimited "firstness" of the First Source and Center. The concept of the I AM is something you have to have in order to answer the question "How did things ever get started in the, first place?" It is not a factual concept. But the term "the Infinite" really means something. The Universal Father really does have free will and there are simply no limitations on his free will. When we think of him in this way we also sometimes use the term "'the Father-Infinite."
We all have trouble in understanding the full meaning of the term "the Father-Infinite." None of us really has a big enough mind to really grasp what "the Father-Infinite" really means. And then again, the Universal Father does not appear as the Infinite on less-than-infinite levels. We believe that there are only two beings who really know the Father as an infinity. To the rest of us such a belief is an act of faith.
IV. Universe Reality
As we look at the universe today, we see different kinds of reality; it is not all just the same. Reality gets started because the Universal Father decided to start it. From our standpoint there are three main kinds of reality:
- 1 . Undeified reality. In general, this is the material side of creation. It is the part of creation that is not personal. This sort of reality also suggests something that could not even be made personal. In the final analysis, this kind of reality runs out into the presence of the Unqualified Absolute -- the part of infinity that the I AM moved away from.
- 2. Deified reality. In the main, this is the personal side of creation. It has to do with personality from the bottom to the top, from the lowest finite to the highest infinite, If something is even personalizable, then it falls in this general category. But deified reality also goes beyond personality. (Remember that the absoniters are superpersonal.) Deified reality finally winds up in the presence of the Deity Absolute -- The part of infinity that the I AM moved into.
- 3. Interassociated reality. Reality is suppose deified or undeified. But to beings below the level of Deity there exists a borderline zone. Deified and undeified realities seem to be mixed up and blended. This interassociated reality seems to be the province of the Universal Absolute -- the third Absolute who appeared to equalize the tension between the other two.
This is the primal concept of original reality: The Father starts it and keeps it up as a going concern. The basic and original split in reality is between deified reality and undeified reality -- between the Deity Absolute and the Unqualified Absolute. The original relationship is the tension between these two Absolutes. This tension which the Father caused is completely relieved by the Universal Absolute (the third Absolute). This is how the Universal Absolute came into being, by compensating this tension).
From the viewpoint of time and space, you can further subdivide reality:
- 1 . Actual and Potential. Some things are already here; others are yet to come. For example, the Eternal Son is complete and final as a spiritual being. But mortal man is hardly a spiritual being, at the present time, man is a potential spiritual being.
- 2. Absolute and Subabsolute. Whatever is absolute is from eternity; it has always been; it has nothing whatsoever to do with time. Subabsolute realities are of two kinds: First of all there are absonites. Absonite realities have a relationship to both time and eternity; they occupy an in-between zone. And then, there are finites. Finite realities do exist in space and do have a beginning in time.
- 3. Existential and Experiential. That which knows before experience is existential; that which grows by virtue of experience is experiential. The Paradise Deities are existential in nature. The Supreme and the Ultimate are experiential in nature.
- 4. Personal and Impersonal. The expansion of Deity, the expression of personality, and the evolution of the. universes -- all these things are forever flowing in channels which the Father has provided. There are two main channels, personal and impersonal. The Father made these channels when he created Paradise alongside the Eternal Son. Paradise is the impersonal pattern; it starts the stream flowing in the impersonal channel. The Son is the pattern personality; he starts the stream flowing in the personal channel.
PARADISE. This word can be used as either an adjective or a noun. In this paragraph we want to discuss it as an adjective. We can refer to Paradise forces and energies. We speak of the Paradise gravity center. We can talk about Paradise Deities. We may speak of Paradise divinity, Paradise personality, or Paradise energy -- spiritual, mindal, or material. Everything started at Paradise, but Paradise (the central Isle) did not start everything.
The Isle of Paradise. Now we want to define Paradise as a noun. This central Isle is the machine which the Father personally built. He built this machine for the same reason that any personality builds a machine. He built it to do a machine-like job of controlling the material universes. Since the Father is absolute, so also is his machine absolute. It is the center of his system of gravity control of the universes. Paradise does not move. It is the only stationary thing in the universe of universes. The Isle of Paradise has a universe location; it can be physically reached if you travel in the right direction and have the means of transport. But the Isle of Paradise is not in space; space comes to its inner boundary just before reaching Paradise. Paradise is surrounded by something, but that "something" is not space. All the matter and energy of the material universes came from Paradise. This is also true of all past and of all future universes. This nuclear Isle of Light came into being by the acts of Deity. But Paradise is not Deity. Neither are the material creations a part of Deity; they are a consequence of Deity action..
Paradise is not a creator; it does not create anything at all. But there is nothing else exactly like it when it comes to exercising control over many things that go on in the universes. To some extent it reacts to what goes on in the universes. But it does not react nearly so much as it controls. Everywhere you go, Paradise influences the doings of everybody that has anything to do with force, energy, and power. There is nothing else like Paradise in all the universes. Paradise represents nothing and nothing represents Paradise. We have nothing else to compare it to. It is just Paradise.
V. PERSONALITY REALITIES
Let's go back and talk about deified reality again. (Deified reality is the part of infinity that the I AM moved into.) There are many subdivisions of deified reality. Personality realities make up one of these subdivisions. As you would visualize personality reality,
it would start out with the type of mind that has qualities of worship and wisdom. This is the human and the midwayer type of mind. It goes up through morontia and spiritual levels of growth to where you reach finality of personality status. This is the way human beings and mid wayers, and other kindred creatures grow. But there are many other types of personalities that do not grow in just this way.
Reality can be expanded without limit. Personalities can be infinitely varied. Both reality and personality can become related to Deity. Both can be eternally stabilized. There is a limit to the changes that can be made in nonpersonal reality. But we know of no limitations as to how far a personality can advance and grow.
When personalities really grow up and reach advanced levels of attained experience, it becomes more and more possible for them to associate together. Within limits, they may even be able to create something new, and someone new. Even God and man--divine nature and human nature -- can live together in the same personality. Christ Michael proves this for he is right now still the Son of Man as well as the Son of God.
Below the level of infinity, any two personalities may develop the ability to associate. They may even develop the ability to create together. This goes even beyond personality as such. It also takes in prepersonal and superpersonal beings. The prepersonal, the personal, and the superpersonal are all linked together. There are three things that link them together: First of all, they can work together, sooner or later. Then, second, they can all progress and grow. And lastly, third, they have capacity to be cocreational. But there is a sharp line between these three relationships and something that is impersonal. Something that is impersonal never gets to be personal as a matter of growth. Personality never appears spontaneously. Personality is always the gift of the Paradise Father. Personality is put in on top of energy; it is something that is added to a living energy system. Nonliving energy patterns may have identity, but they never have personality.
What personality is, is a secret of the Universal Father. He gives it, and knows what the destiny of personality is. The Eternal Son is the absolute personality. The Eternal Son knows the secrets of spirit energy and all about how morontia spirits become perfected spirits. The Conjoint Actor is the spirit-mind personality. He is the source of intelligence, reason, and the universal mind. But the Isle of Paradise is neither personal nor spiritual. The Isle of Paradise is the essence of the universal body. It is the where all physical matter cane from. It is also the master pattern that was copied in the building of the material creations.
These four qualities of universal reality could be described as matter, mind, spirit, and personality. Human beings know about them as follows:
- 1. Body. The material or physical organism of man. The living electro-chemical mechanism of animal nature and of animal origin.
- 2. Mind. The part of the living body that thinks, senses, and feels. This includes both the conscious and unconscious levels of mind. This is the intelligence and the emotions which reach up through worship and wisdom to the spirit level.
- 3. Spirit. This is the divine spirit that lives in man's mind. This divine spirit is called a Thought Adjuster. This spirit is immortal. It is not a personality; it is prepersonal. It has a chance to become a part of man's personality if that human being chooses to survive.
- 4. Soul. The soul of man is something that is built up by experience. When a human being chooses to do the will of the Father in heaven, then the indwelling spirit becomes the father of something new. The human mind is the mother of this same new reality. This new reality is the child of the indwelling spirit and of the human mind. It is neither material nor spiritual. It is something in between -- morontial. This is the emerging soul. It is intended to be immortal. it can survive mortal death and begin the long ascent to Paradise.
- 5. Personality. The personality of a human being is neither body, mind, nor spirit; neither is it the soul. Personality does not change; everything else in a creature's experience does change. Personality unifies everything that goes to make up a creature. Personality is something unique; it is something which the Father gives; he gives it to the living associated energies of matter, mind, and spirit. Personality survives with the survival of the morontial soul.
- 6. Morontia. There is a big gap between matter and spirit. Many things exist in this in-between zone. We call these in-between realities "morontia." This word can be used to describe any morontia reality -- personal or impersonal, living or nonliving. The warp of morontia is spiritual; its woof is physical.
VI. Energy and Pattern
There is a circuit, called the personality circuit, that goes all over the universes and that centers in the Father. All personalities are in that circuit. This is the way we tell if a being has personality. If he is in the Father's personality circuit, then that being has personality. If he is not in this circuit, then he does not have the kind of personality that comes from the Father. Similarly, we can use other circuits to tell spirit, mind, and matter. If something responds to the spirit circuit of the Eternal Son, then we know that it is spiritual in nature. If something will respond to the mind circuit of the Infinite Spirit, then we know that this particular thing is mind. If something responds to gravity, then we know that it is matter. All of the gravity circuits finally tie in to the big gravity center on the underside of the Isle of Paradise. If anything responds to any kind of material gravity, then we know that it is something that once came from the Isle of Paradise. It is matter or material energy of some kind or other.
ENERGY. We use the word "energy" to mean more than just material energy. We speak of spiritual energy, of mindal energy, as well as of material energy. We use the word "force" in just the same way: spiritual force, mindal force, or cosmic (material) force. We use the word "power" in two ways: Material energy goes through different stages of development. The beginning forms of energy would hardly register on the instruments which human beings have developed. Neither does this beginning form of energy respond to the gravity which human beings know about. But later on, this beginning form of energy gets along to the place where it does respond to gravity (as you know gravity). When it gets down to this stage then we call it power. This stage is the electronic stage; atoms are beginning to form. But then we also use the word "power" in another sense: We use it to mean sovereignty as "sovereign power." We have to give special meanings to these three words -- force, energy, and power. You just do not have enough words in the English language to cover the situation. So, we have to take some of your regular words and give them special meanings. Let's talk about these three words as they apply to the material side of creation.
Physical energy. We use the term "physical energy" in several ways: If something moves, that is physical energy in action. If some thing acts in any way, that is physical energy in action. And then again, if some thing is not acting but could act, it still has physical energy. For example, a storage battery may not be doing anything; but it could start your car; even when it is not doing anything it still has some physical energy inside of it; but this energy is potential (not actual) until you step on the starter and put it into action. So, we use the term "physical energy" when we want to talk about material motion, action or potential.
When we want to be more specific about physical energy and what it does, then we break it down into three further terms. We use the terms "cosmic force," "emergent energy," and "universe power," We use these terms with the following meanings:
- 1. Cosmic force. If you remember, we have told you that all of material universes came from the Isle of Paradise. But the new Universes are not flowing out of Paradise piecemeal. The whole of material creation did flow out of Paradise back in eternity. Havona, the central universe, became immediately real. But there was then nothing outside of Havona, nothing except space in which to build the superuniverses (and, later on, the outer universes). Where did the rest of the "stuff" of creation go to? It appears that it flowed from Isle of Paradise into the grasp of the Unqualified Absolute. (You remember that the Unqualified Absolute is the part of infinity that the I AM moved away from.) Ever since that time, the Unqualified Absolute has been slowly releasing little by little, giving up what it once got from Paradise. As the Unqualified Absolute releases the "stuff" of material creation, so are the new universes born in time and space. But, when the Unqualified Absolute first releases this "stuff" of material creation it is not, at that stage, responsive even to Paradise gravity. In this very early stage, we call the "stuff' of material creation "cosmic force."
- 2. Emergent Energy. Later on in the developmen tof the "stuff" of material creation, it becomes responsive to Paradise gravity. When it does respond to Paradise gravity, we call it "emergent energy." It has "emerged" from the grasp of the Unqualified Absolute. But this emergent energy is still not responsive to gravity, as human beings know gravity. It would not respond to the gravity pull of your world -- just to the gravity center on nether Paradise. This emergent energy is the "stuff' of material creation just before you get matter -atoms and electrons.
- 3. Universe power. Now we have gotten down to the place where you understand material energy. Universe power does respond to gravity as you know about gravity. It still responds (in a general way) to the Paradise gravity center, but it also responds directly to the gravity pull of planets and suns. This is the stage of electrons, and protons, and atoms, and motion -- all as human beings understand such things.
Mind. Wherever mind appears then you can know that some living being has done something to put mind there. First of all you have to have a living energy system and then mind can be put into that energy system. This is true no matter how high you go. Humans have mind added to a material energy system (the body). Seraphim have mind added to a spiritual energy system (the seraphic form). If the energy system has also been given personality (by the Father), then mind acts as a cushion between spirit and matter. It reaches out and ties spirit and matter together. For this reason we recognize three kinds of "light" -- material light, intellectual insight, and spirit luminosity.
Light. When we speak of spirit luminosity, we am using a figure of speech. You do the same thing when you speak of "enlightenment" in the sense of making something understandable. But there is something about spiritual beings that can only be described as "luminosity." But this spirit luminosity has nothing to do with intellectual insight or physical light.
Pattern. Here is another word we should talk about. Matter, mind, or spirit can have a pattern. Any combination of these energies can have a pattern. A personal being (a personality) has a pattern; an identity has a pattern; entities and even nonliving matter have patterns.. All of these things have shape, form, configuration of some sort. But pattern never reproduces itself. It is not creative. If a pattern repeats, then somebody has made a copy of an earlier and original pattern.
Pattern determines the shape or form that energy takes. An atom, has a precise pattern, with a nucleus and with electrons swinging around the central nucleus. But this pattern or form does not explain what holds the atom together. Pattern does not control the atom. It is gravity that controls the atom. Pattern does not control energy; gravity does. Pattern, itself, does not respond to gravity. Neither does space respond to gravity. But this does not mean that there is any connection between pattern and space - just because neither of them do respond to gravity. Space has nothing to do with pattern; it is something entirely different.. The reason that pattern does respond to gravity is because there nothing in pattern which can respond to gravity. If we go back to the atom, we have the nucleus and the electrons swinging around it. The material mass of nucleus and the electrons does respond to gravity; pattern has no mass. In a human being, we have a body that has just so much mass; the body weighs just so many pounds; this weight in pounds is a measure of the pull of gravity on this human body. This human being might have a body pattern (appearance) that you would call beautiful. The "beauty" does not respond to gravity; the body does. This same comparison is true on the mind and spirit levels. The reality of any pattern (form) is determined by the stuff of which it is made.
Pattern is very meaningful though. Patterns differ and it is this very difference that makes life so interesting. People do not look alike. There is a general similarity to the human races, but pattern (appearance) makes each human being look different. The form, or pattern of something sets it apart from the total of things. It can be recognized and identified as something individual. This is especially true of the form of a personal creature. All personal forms tend to individualize -- become different from any other similar forms. This is true of material beings, morontia beings, and spiritual beings. They reshape their forms. Even the character of a human being tends to become imprinted on his facial expression. Why does this take place? Why do appearances tend to individualize? Well, it is not because of anything inherent in energy (material, mindal, or spiritual). It goes way back to the beginning of things. It goes way back to the personality of God and to the mechanism of Paradise. God made Paradise, the pattern of patterns; he gave it the "shape" it has. And ever since that time personality has been expressing itself in determining the "shape" of things, in creating new and individual patterns.
Pattern is something that is copied; a master design from which copies can be made. Eternal Paradise is the absolute of patterns; it is the first "shape" to be produced by God. The Eternal Son is the pattern personality. The Universal Father is the direct ancestor-
source of both the Son and of Paradise. And here is something interesting to note: Paradise does not bestow pattern and the Son cannot bestow personality. Both have limitations. The Father has escaped from these limitations by becoming the cause of Paradise and the parent of the Son.
VII. The Supreme Being
Let's go back to the earlier parts of this Foreword and take up the story of Deity again. We want to talk about Deity from a little different angle. If we consider Deity from the standpoint of eternity (especially past eternity) we can see some new relationships. From this standpoint we can see that all of Deity has not existed from eternity. Deity divides into two groupings: First of all, there is Deity that has existed from eternity. And then there is Deity that has not existed from eternity. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit have existed from eternity; that is why we call them "existential; " they have always been. But this is not true of God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and God the Absolute. These three Deities are becoming; they are coming into being. They are actualizing, growing, and expanding. They did not exist back in the days when there was only the central universe, back before the seven superuniverses were started. They are coming into being since these distant days. We speak of modern times as the "post-Havona epochs." By this, we mean the times since the beginning of' the seven superuniverses; the times since Havona is no longer alone -- the only creation.
It is in these post-Havona epochs that God the Supreme, God Ultimate, and God the Absolute are making their appearance. They are appearing on different levels as the master universe grows and expands. They are appearing in time and space and they are also appearing in other ways. For example: The Supreme is appearing as a time-space growth. But the Ultimate is above time and space Ultimate transcends time and space. These three now appearing, or growing Deities are not past eternals (they have not always been). But they are future eternals (they always will be). They are coming into being through co-operation with the original three Paradise Deities --Father, Son, and Spirit. They grow as they become powerful in the universes. They become powerful by putting together all of the creative work that is going on in the growing universes. In so doing, they gain experience. And this is why we call God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and God the Absolute "experiential Deities."
So, we come to the understanding that, from this standpoint, there are two kinds of Deities:
- 1. Existential. These are beings of eternal existence. They are from the eternal past, they exist in the eternal future. God the Father, God the Son and God the Spirit are existential.
- 2. Experiential. These are beings who are not from the eternal past. They are coming into existence in the post-Havona present. They will continue to exist throughout all future eternity. They are not past-eternal; they are future-eternal. God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and God the Absolute are experiential Deities.
The Father, Son and Spirit are existential. So far as their actual being is concerned they are truly existential. Presumably if they could express themselves in some new way, then they too could experience. The Supreme and the Ultimate are wholly experiential. But when we come to God the Absolute we have to be careful: God the Absolute and the Deity Absolute are terms expressing different aspects of the same reality. The Deity Absolute is that part of infinity the I AM moved into. But in this sense, the Deity Absolute is potential; an emptiness which can be filled by the acts of Deity. As such a pure potential, the Deity Absolute is from past eternity, is existential. But, when we use the term "God the Absolute" we mean to indicate that this pure potential, this original emptiness, has become filled up by experience. In this sense, God the Absolute is also experiential. Basically, all Deity is eternal. But only the Father, Son, Spirit are completely eternal. All other Deity personalities have an origin, but they are eternal in destiny.
Way back in eternity, the Father expressed himself in the Son and in the Spirit. But the Father did not stop there. He has ever since been expressing himself in new ways. He has been expressing himself by personalizing certain levels of Deity that were not originally personal. He has been expressing himself on the finite, the absonite, the absolute levels of experience. He is thus expressing himself as God the Supreme, and as God the Ultimate, and as God the Absolute. These three experiential Deities are not now fully in existence. They are in process of coming into being; they are growing.
God the Supreme. There is a presence of the Supreme in the central universe of Havona. This presence is a reflection of the three Paradise Deities -- Father, Son, and Spirit. The Paradise Deities and the Supreme are at work out in time and space, out in the seven superuniverses. They are working as God the Sevenfold out in time and space. (We will talk about God the Sevenfold in the next section.) At any rate, this work that they are doing out in time and space is building up the power of The Supreme Being. When we think of this growing power of the Supreme, we use a special word, "Almighty." When we think of the Supreme working as a powerful Deity in the grand universe, we speak of him as the Almighty Supreme. So we have the three Deities on Paradise producing the spirit person of God the Supreme in Havona and building up his power as the Almighty Supreme in the grand universe. These two phases of growth, spirit person and powerful Almighty, are flowing together. They are uniting as one Lord, as the Supreme Being.
This whole process is a continuation of the Father's escape from the limitations of being infinite and absolute. First of all, he escapes from infinity. Next, through the Son and the Spirit, he escaped from the limitations of being total Deity. Now, in the Supreme Being, Father is escaping from eternity. Now in the Supreme Being the Father can realize what it is like to be Deity and still to work in time in space, to know what it is like to grow and to experience.
The Supreme Being has not created anyone directly -- with one exception. He did create Majeston, the Paradise chief of reflectivity. He does work as a co-ordinator of everything that is going on in the Grand universe. He ties together all of the activities of creators and of creatures in the grand universe. There are the three Deities on Paradise; there are also numerous subordinate Creators working out in time and space; the Supreme Being co-ordinates the work of all of them. When the Supreme Being has finished his growth, his basic nature will combine the finite and the infinite. His nature will unite the kind of power that is earned by experience with the kind of spirit personality that comes from Paradise Deity.
The Supreme Being is doing something more than just growing. He also is acting as a director of what is going on in time and space as it applies to finite beings. What is he directing towards? Well, it is a sort of mobilization. He is encouraging the union of time-space experience with spirit personality. He is trying to bring about more and more of this sort of putting together of power and personality. He is trying to foster the union of experiential power with spirit person. Why is he doing this? He is trying to break through the barrier that separates the finite level of creation from the absonite level of creation. He is trying to build a bridge over which finite creatures may someday cross to the absonite level. He is trying to help finite creatures become more than finite creatures. He is trying to help them become supercreatures.
VIII. God the Sevenfold
Human beings and similar finite creatures are simply so far away from Paradise Deity that they need a ladder to get there. Because of this the Universal Father has provided just such a ladder. He has made it possible for creatures to approach him in seven steps. Here are the steps:
- 1. The Paradise Creator Sons
- 2. The Ancients of Days
- 3. The Seven Master Spirits
- 4. The Supreme Being
- 5. God the Spirit
- 6. God the Son
- 7. God the Father
This is how God works in time and space. This is how he works in the seven superuniverses. It is through these seven steps that human beings can eventually get to the presence of God, who is spirit. This sevenfold Deity is Deity as man comes in contact with Deity on the way to Paradise. The work that is done by this sevenfold Deity adds up to the growing power of the Supreme Being. As human beings come in contact with God the Sevenfold, they start out by discerning and recognizing the divinity of the Creator Son of their local Universe. Later on, they reach the Ancients of Days of their superuniverse. Then they encounter some one of the Seven Master Spirits -- the one who supervises the superuniverse the ascender came from. Finally the ascender attains the Universal Father on Paradise.
You will remember that the grand universe is made up of Havona plus the seven superuniverses. Well, Deity is working in the grand universe in three different ways and all of them at the same time. First of all, the Paradise Trinity is working in the grand universe. Here the Trinity is working down on the finite level, working in relation to the Supreme; so we call this the working of the Trinity of Supremacy. The Trinity of Supremacy is the Paradise Trinity Father, Son, and Spirit working on the finite level. Now, the Supreme Being is also working in the grand universe; this is the second way in which Deity is in action on the finite level. Third, and last, God the Sevenfold is at work in the grand universe. So we say that the grand universe is a threefold Deity domain. Three Deities are working here -- the Trinity of Supremacy, God the Sevenfold, and the Supreme Being. The Supreme Being is especially involved in all this work. First of all, he gets his personality and spirit attributes from the Paradise Trinity; this is the spirit person of God the Supreme in Havona. But he gets his growing power as the Almighty ruler of the superuniverses from somewhere else. This almighty power is building up through all the work of three groups who belong to God the Sevenfold -- the Creator Sons, the Ancients of Days, and the Seven Master Spirits. The Supreme Being is the immediate God of evolutionary creatures. He evolves just as these creatures evolve. His power as Almighty grows right along with the growth of the creatures of the seven superuniverses. This almighty power of the Supreme and the spirit person of the Supreme are becoming one and the same reality. Both are coming together in a complete and final union -- as the Supreme Being.
We have already told you how human beings are helped to climb up to God by the ladder of God the Sevenfold. The Creator Sons start out helping human beings on this long journey from death to immortality. In this way a finite creature eventually can attain the embrace of the Infinite -- can find God the Father on Paradise. The Supreme Being is also concerned with the further and continuing growth of finite beings. He is trying to put everything finite together in such a way as to build a bridge across from the finite to the absonite. He is trying to help finite creatures sometime try to reach up to absonite levels of existence. If they can ever get to these absonite levels, then perhaps they can try to learn something about God the Ultimate. We think that this is going to take place a very long time from now -- this climbing upward from the finite to the absonite. When it does take place, we feel that the Creator Sons and their associated Divine Ministers are going to take part in it. They may not always stay in the local universes. But we believe that the Ancients of Days and the Seven Master Spirits will always stay just where they are; they are the rulers of the seven superuniverses.
God the Sevenfold began to work when the seven superuniverses were started. We think that the work of God the Sevenfold will someday expand out into the now uninhabited universes of outer space. There are four really big zones in outer space. They encircle the grand universe and they get larger and larger the farther out you go. We call them the primary, secondary, tertiary, and quartan space levels. Sometime people are going to live out in these now inhabited space levels. Government will be provided for them. Their inhabitants will stream inward to Paradise in the search for Deity. But it will be a somewhat different search for Deity than the one that is going on now in the grand universe. Now creatures are making a finite and evolutionary approach to Deity. Someday, the outer-spacers will try to make a more-than-finite approach to Deity. They will try to make a transcendent and absonite approach to Deity. They will be looking for the same Deity (the Universal Father), but they will be looking for him on a new and higher level.
IX. God the Ultimate
The Supreme Being grows by putting together everything that is going on in the grand universe. He is putting together divinity, and energy, and personality activities. These activities are taking place in time and space. Now God the Ultimate is growing in a similar way. But he is growing on a higher level and he is reaching out to take in a wider range of universe activity. The Supreme is growing in time and space; the Ultimate is growing in transcended time and space. The Supreme is growing in the grand universe arena; this takes in Havona and the seven superuniverses. The Ultimate is growing in the whole master universe arena; this takes in the grand universe and the four outer space levels. The Ultimate is putting things together on his higher level and in his larger sphere something like the Supreme is doing on a lower level and within a smaller sphere. When The Supreme completes his growth, it means that Deity has completed growth on the first level of creative self-realization; this is the finite time-space level. When the Ultimate completes his growth, it means that Deity has completed growth on the second level of creative realization; this is the absonite level of super-time and transcended space.
The completed growth of the Ultimate also means something else: It means that a new Trinity, an experiential Trinity has come into being on the absonite level. The Paradise Trinity is existential; this new Trinity we refer to as the "first experiential Trinity." ((We will tell you more about this first experiential Trinity in Section XII of this Simplification.)
At any rate, the completed growth of the Ultimate means that everything which could be expressed by experience on the absonite level has been expressed. It has been expressed as a new unified Deity, as the Ultimate Deity. Paradise-absonite realities have been expressed. They have been expressed on a certain value-level. This value-level can be described as follows: it is a level on which things and beings "eventuate," it is a level on which time is transcended, and it is a level on which space is transcended. This development of the Ultimate has some meaning for all of us and for all of you. You have a chance to take part in this growth of the Ultimate. In taking part in this growth you may grow up to absonite levels yourselves. You will be helped to do this by God the Sevenfold and also by the Supreme Being. In doing all of this you will be given a chance to be of ultimate service in the universes and to achieve ultimate destiny for yourselves.
God the Ultimate is a term which we use to mean personal Deity working on levels of absonite divinity. This also means working in supertime, or transcended time; this is something outside of time but not yet in eternity. This also means working in transcended space; this is something above space but still short of infinity. God the Supreme is a supreme evolution of Deity. God the Ultimate is a supersupreme eventuation of Deity. When finite beings want to understand the Paradise Trinity as a unified Deity, it is the Supreme that they will be able to understand. The Ultimate is the unification of the Paradise Trinity which can be understood by absonite beings.
What is the Universal Father doing in all this business of the growth of God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and God the Absolute? Well, remember the three levels of finite, absonite, and absolute? The Father has set in motion this whole business of evolutionary Deity. It is working on all three levels at the same time. It putting together new experiencing personality and new earned power on each of these levels. It is bringing three new Deities into existence.
There are three past-eternal Deities -- the Universal Father, the Eternal Son, and the Infinite Spirit. In past eternity they were alone on Paradise. In future eternity, they are going to be joined by three associate evolutionary Deities. These three evolutionary Deities are God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and (possibly) God the Absolute.
God the Supreme and God the Ultimate are now evolving in the experiential universes. They are not existential; they have not existed .from past eternity. They are future eternals. The Supreme is a future eternal, working within the limitations of time and space, The Ultimate is a future-eternal, working within the limits of supertime and transcended space. When we think about the attributes and powers of these evolutionary Deities, we do not think of them as infinite (like the Paradise Deities). We think of these evolutionary Deities as having supreme attributes and as having ultimate attributes
Possibly they have supreme-ultimate attributes -- the attributes of one multiplied by the attributes of the other. But both of them came into being a finite number of years ago; they have had historic universe origins. They will never have an end. They do have personality beginnings. They have been derived from eternal and infinite Deity potentials. But neither Supreme nor Ultimate are eternal nor infinite -- in the full meaning of those words.
X. God the Absolute
The Deity Absolute and God the Absolute are related, but they are not the same. Let's go back to our discussion of Reality. Do you remember that we talked about how the I AM moved away from a part of infinity and into another part of infinity? Well, the part that he moved into, we call the Qualified Absolute ''-- "qualified" because he moved into it. We still more often refer to this Qualified Absolute as the Deity Absolute. The two terms are not quite the same, but they are close. This Deity Absolute is the zone or area in which all Deity acts -- Father, Son, Spirit, and Trinity. When you think of the relationship of the Deity Absolute to God the Absolute, you might think of it this way: The Deity Absolute is a foundation on which God the Absolute is being erected. The foundation is eternal and existential -- it never had a beginning. The structure that is being erected on this foundation is experiential. It certainly does have a beginning. Here, then, is the picture: We have an existential foundation, the Deity Absolute. On this foundation there is being erected an experiential structure; this structure is God the Absolute. The Deity Absolute, the foundation, is before and after all experience. God the Absolute; would be experienceable, would be knowable, in some manner or other, by experiencing beings. If and when God the Absolute comes into existence, it will be because a second experiential Trinity has come into full being. You will remember that we talked about a "first experiential Trinity" in connection with God the Ultimate; well, we are now talking about a "second experiential Trinity" in connection God the Absolute. (We will tell you about both of these experiential trinities in Section XII of this Simplification. It is enough for this discussion to note that they are something different from the Paradise Trinity of Father, Son, and Spirit.
If this second experiential trinity, the Absolute Trinity, should ever go to work in a full sense, then it would really mean something. What would it mean? It would mean that divinity was no longer being revealed to the universes in a partial or relative sense -- in a diluted way. It would mean that divinity (truth, beauty, and goodness) was being revealed in an absolute sense -- in an undiluted way. It would mean something more. It would also indicate that meanings were completely unified. How would meanings be unified? Well, for example, the love of God and the justice of the Trinity are bound to look different to a human being. The law of Deity and the love of God do not always look alike out in time and space. Material gravity and spiritual love seem to obey different laws. If meanings were completely unified, then all these things would be seen to be acting in accordance with a basic unified law. So, we have the picture of divinity being revealed in an absolute (undiluted) sense and meanings being unified in a final sense. But how about values? We are not so sure that values could all be tied together. Why not? Well, we come back to the fact that God the Absolute is being erected on the Foundation of the Deity Absolute. The Deity Absolute is the Qualified Absolute -- that part of infinity into which the I AM moved. We have never been informed that this Qualified Absolute is the same as the Infinite....
But of this much we are sure. You cannot get to Absolute values without going beyond ultimate destinies. This is the only way to get to absolute meanings and final spirituality. And until these are reached there is no use even talking about absolute values.
You will remember that we told you that God the Ultimate is comprehensible to absonite beings. Well, there are beings that are higher than absonite. We call them superabsonite. God the Absolute is understandable to such superabsonite beings. But we cannot even talk about God the Absolute without getting involved in the Deity Absolute. Now we are getting into something that is far above even our powers of understanding. We therefore hesitate to become deeply involved in these matters which are so very far above the level of human comprehension.
XI. The Three Absolutes
Let's go back and talk some more about how everything got started in the first place. We told you the story one way: We told you the story by starting out with the three Absolutes. We could just as well tell the story by ending up with the three Absolutes. Suppose we tell you the story of creation in this other way: This time we will start out with the Universal Father and the Eternal Son. When they had their first united plan for action, this act brought the God of Action into existence. The God of Action, of course, is the Infinite Spirit. When the Infinite Spirit began to function, then the central universe of Havona was born. When Havona came into existence, the Father did several things: He sent out his creative thought into the expression or word of his Son. He also worked with the Son in the act of their Conjoint Executive, the Infinite Spirit. And then, he did something else. He continued to be actually present in Havona. But he stopped being present in just that same way outside of Havona. He separated his Havona presence from his presence everywhere else. This is because Havona is a complete and finished creation and everywhere else was unfinished -- in fact, at that distant time there wasn't anything outside of Havona except space. In Havona, the Father is an actual presence. Elsewhere, he is more of a potential presence -- an emptiness-that-can-be-filled. This emptiness-that-can-be-filled, this infinity potential hides the presence of the Father outside of Havona. He is revealed in Havona, he is hidden elsewhere. He is space-hidden in the Unqualified Absolute. His divinity is hidden in the Deity Absolute. And there is still a third Absolute. This is the co-ordinating Absolute, the Universal Absolute. It is in the Universal Absolute that the Father hides his nature as the unchanging Infinite. This Universal Absolute so acts as to make the other two Absolutes seem to be like one Absolute.
Now, at last, God has got room to work in. He has a base of operations in Havona and he has room in which to create. He can start to express himself in new ways. He can bring something new into existence. This new thing is experience. Creations and creatures no longer "flash" into existence. Now he can begin to create slowly, step by step. He is working now, not in eternity but in time and by evolution and by experience. This applies to new physical creations. It also applies to new spiritual creations. This working in time causes a new activity on the part of the Universal Absolute. The Universal Absolute now begins to correlate the things of time and experience with the existential things of eternity. How does this work? Well, consider what happens when God puts imperfection in the same universe along with perfection. This produces quite a tension. They are antagonistic. Infinite perfection could hardly be expected to tolerate the presence of finite imperfection. Here again, the Universal Absolute acts as a balance of these tensions. The natural antagonism between infinite perfection and finite imperfection is exactly counterbalanced by this activity of the Universal Absolute. Now the First Source and Center can know what it is to watch sovereign power slowly expand out into the growing superuniverses. Now, he can be father, not only of the Eternal Son, but also of mortal man. Now God can even plan to bring into existence Deities that will also grow by experience. These experiential Deities are God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and God the Absolute.
There are three Absolutes: Deity, Unqualified, and Universal. Sometimes it is not possible to separate the acts of the Deity Absolute and the Unqualified Absolute. Sometimes they are supposed to work very closely together. Sometimes they are even supposed to be a combined or co-ordinated single presence. In these situations, we call this combined presence and combined action the work of the Universal Absolute.
1. The Deity Absolute. The Deity Absolute is all the time getting things started, getting them in motion, stirring up activity. The Unqualified Absolute mechanizes things. What things are involved in these actions? It is the whole vast cosmos that is involved. It is the universes that now are. It is all the universes that are coming into being. It is all the universes that ever could be. And this whole cosmos of past, present, and future is not growing in any haphazard way; it is supremely unified and ultimately co-ordinated -- it is fully planned.
The Deity Absolute works in a way that is hard to understand. Perhaps we can suggest this way of working by saying that it embraces everything. You know how a person can take care of himself. He can also want to take care of his family. He may become mayor of a city and try hard to do what is right for a great metropolis. Let's go on expanding this horizon of responsibilities. The chief executive of a great nation would try to do what is good for the whole nation. A Creator Son works for the good of his whole local universe. The Supreme Being is working for the good of the whole grand universe. The Deity Absolute is at all times working for the greatest good of everything -- everywhere. And not just everywhere, but also everywhen. What the Deity Absolute does today is not only for the good of all the people of today, but also for the people of tomorrow -- and for the universes of all the tomorrows. The Deity Absolute is today just as concerned about a person or a planet or a universe that may not come into existence for another million or a billion years. A picture has meaning because it has a frame. You can't put a frame around the work of the Deity Absolute because the actual frame is infinity and eternity.
In another sense, you should think of the Deity Absolute as a vast room which the Father has set aside. The Father and his divine associates are working in this room. This is the "Deity workshop" of the Father. In this workshop the father and his associates can labor in the eternity way and also in the time way -- for that matter, in any way they may choose. But they are always working here as Deity and their work is always known by the flavor of divinity. This is not the only workshop that the Father has set up. There is another one. This other workshop is the presence of the Unqualified Absolute. . This other workshop came into existence by contrast -- by contrast with the workshop of the Deity Absolute. The Father, in effect, said that he would work in one workshop as Deity; this is a qualification or limitation of what the Father would do. So we have the workshop of the Deity Absolute, the Qualified Absolute. The Father did not thus limit or qualify his activities in the other workshop. So we call it the Unqualified Absolute. But do not forget: There is still a third workshop. This is the workshop of the Universal Absolute. When you think of all three workshops or rooms, then you are thinking of all the vast roominess of infinity. The three of them together do reach out to take in all of infinity. These three workshops contain all of the potential "stuff" out of which everything actual is made -- matter, mind, and spirit.
2. The Unqualified Absolute. This workshop has nothing to do with the activities of Deity, divinity, or personality. Here the Father is working in a way that is not personal, not Deity, and not divinity. This means that the Unqualified Absolute is not a person. The Unqualified Absolute is not Deity. The Unqualified Absolute is not a creator. You see what we are up against; we keep telling you what this Absolute is "not." We have a hard time telling you what this Absolute "is." This mystery is going to be with you even when you have progressed far beyond the human level. No facts and no truth can penetrate this problem. No experience and no revelation can clear up this mystery. Even the highest philosophy is helpless. Even the philosophy of the absoniters breaks down in attempting to unravel the nature and character of this Unqualified Absolute.
But we can make a few positive statements about the Unqualified Absolute: This Absolute is a positive reality, a real presence. This presence is everywhere throughout the grand universe. There is just as much of this same presence throughout all outer space, the space outside the grand universe where such a vast amount of physical creation is going on. This presence is also a space presence, a presence in space. (It is possible, of course, to have a presence that would not be a space presence -- present but not taking up any space. The Deity Absolute, for example, is everywhere present, but is not in space. The Unqualified Absolute is also everywhere present and is in space.) This presence of the Unqualified Absolute is something entirely different from some of the speculations of your thinkers in metaphysics and philosophy. Some of them tend to think of the universe as being more or less self-acting. Things just happen in certain ways because this is the way things just happen. But this is simply not so. There is nothing chancy or haphazard about it. The Unqualified Absolute is on the job -- always and everywhere.
The job of work that is being done is not a job of controlling things but rather the business of exercising overcontrol. The overcontrol of what? Well, it is mostly on the physical side. It has to do with force and energy. It has to do with the things that are in space.-- material things. In this sort of work, the Unqualified Absolute seems to be working in quite an unlimited way. But this is not so when we look at life, mind, spirit, and personality. In this field the work of the Unqualified Absolute is limited and restricted. And then, of course, the Paradise Trinity of Father, Son and Spirit is really in control of the work of the Unqualified Absolute. This Absolute does what the Paradise Trinity wants done.
There are some more things we can tell you that are not true about the Unqualified Absolute. Some human theologians concentrate so much on the everywhereness of God that they spread Deity so thin it evaporates. That is pantheism. Well, the Unqualified Absolute is something entirely different. Your scientists onetime had an idea that there was something in space itself that could transmit energy. They called this something "ether." The Unqualified Absolute has nothing whatever to do with this "ether" idea. This Absolute seems to have an endless amount of force and energy which can be pulled out of its grasp and used to build new physical universes. We know that this Absolute does what the Paradise Trinity says shall be done. We do not, however, see just how this Absolute is related to spiritual realities in the universes.
3. The Universal Absolute. Let's go back again to when the I AM moved away from a part of infinity and into another part of infinity. This caused infinity to be divided into two parts. There was the part that the I AM moved into -- the qualified part, the Deity commanding part, the Deity Absolute, the Qualified Absolute. There was also the part that the I AM moved away from -- the not-Deity part, the Unqualified Absolute, the "obeyer of commands." But this is not all there is also the relationship between these two parts of infinity. So here we have the two parts plus a relationship. This makes three realities in all. This third reality, this relationship reality, is the Universal Absolute. The Universal Absolute is the binder that holds together these two split parts of infinity and keeps all infinity united. This is what the Universal Absolute did when infinity was divided by the I AM. This is what the Universal Absolute still does and will always do.
You see, this dividing of infinity into two parts separates free will from not-free-will. It separates divinity action from the reactions of not-divinity. It separates dynamics from statics, change from sameness. This separation produces a tension. Think of a piece of wood: Split this piece of wood part way down. Pull the split ends apart. You have a tension. This is like the tension created by splitting infinity. The Universal Absolute acts to relax this tension. The split ends stay apart and are still held together at the base.
Always remember: You cannot know anything about infinity in time. You have to get to eternity before you can even hope to have a little understanding about infinity. When we talk about infinity in time-language we can only talk about a little part of infinity, not about all of it. Neither can we talk about God's infinite personality in any way that would make sense to human beings. God's infinite personality is a part of God's infinite Deity. And you do not know, you do not really understand, very much about either one. When the I AM split infinity and still left it joined (like the piece of wood, split at one end and still holding together at the other) he did something. He produced a real tension; the tension between the Deity Absolute and the Unqualified Absolute. The Universal Absolute immediately stepped in to relieve this tension. It is because of all this that we can have material universes in space. It is because of this that we can have finite personalities in time. Infinity and absoluteness have been brought under the Father's control; infinity and absoluteness have been restrained from crowding out of existence those realities which are not infinite and not absolute -- human beings, for example.
If infinity, eternity, and absoluteness were not brought under control, then they would crowd everything else out of existence. you take an empty bucket, it is really not empty. It is full of air. If you fill it with water, then the water displaces the air. This is the way it is with creation. The bucket is like the universe, the air is like finite things and people, the water is like absoluteness. If absoluteness filled everything then it would displace all of you and all of us, for none of us is absolute. What keeps the "water" from filling up the cosmic bucket? It is the Universal Absolute that does this job. This keeps eternity from crowding out time. Things finite are protected from being crowded out by infinity. The cosmic bucket is kept open for the growths and developments of the future. The Isle of Paradise is restrained from filling up all space. The personality of God makes room in the universe for other personalities, even for the lowly personality of man. Now, if you could measure just how much work the Universal Absolute was doing in keeping the "water" out of the cosmic bucket you would know something. You would know just how much "air" was being protected from displacement. If you knew this then you would know just how much of the present creation was incomplete, imperfect, and unfinished. This would apply not only to finite things and people but also to absonite things and people. Since creation is growing, this work of the Universal Absolute is also growing. We think that this "protecting work" of the Universal Absolute will continue to grow indefinitely.
The Universal Absolute is the Father's third workshop. Here the Father is seeing what can be worked out with split-infinity in a new way. Remember the stick of wood that we talked about -- split at one end and still joined together at the other? Well, another way of looking at it is to say that the Universal Absolute is back at the unsplit end. In this third workshop, the Father is seeing what can be done about tying time and eternity together. Here he is working out a union of finite and absolute values. Here he is seeing what could be done with a united existential-experiential approach to Deity. This third workshop, the Universal Absolute is really not at all understandable. The Universal Absolute is, however, a part of Deity. Do you remember the seven levels we talked about, the seven levels on which total Deity acted? Well, the Universal Absolute acts on the first three levels -- static, potential, and associative. But not on the next two levels, the creative level and the evolutional level. At least this is true as far as concerns the intelligent personalities that live in the master universe.
The Absolute. The two absolutes -- qualified and unqualified -seem to be very different. At least this is the way they look to intelligent creatures. These two Absolutes are perfectly and completely unified by the Third Absolute -- the Universal Absolute. In the last analysis there is just one Absolute. From the human and finite viewpoint there are three. From the infinity viewpoint there is just one. Let's go back to the piece of wood to clear this up. We split the piece of wood part way down. We pull the split ends apart. Now we have a Y-shaped piece of wood. It has three parts: stem, right arm, and left arm. But still it is just one piece of wood.
We never use the word "Absolute" as a negative. We never say "absolutely not." Neither do we think of the Universal Absolute as being self-created -- a sort of impersonal God. So far as personalities are concerned, we know that the Absolute does what the Paradise Trinity wants done. Deity dominates and commands the Absolute.
XII. The Trinities
The original Trinity is the Paradise Trinity of Father, Son, and Spirit. It is eternal; it has always been. It was really inevitable; it had to be. Why did it have to be? Let's go back to the beginning of things again. Do you remember how it was that God first expressed
himself in Paradise and as the Eternal Son? This meant that he separated things non-personal from things personal. Paradise is the absolute machine; the Son is the absolute personality. Then what did the Father do? He brought mind into existence. Mind can build a bridge of relationship between the spirit person and the non-spirit machine. The God of mind is the Infinite Spirit, the Deity equal of The Father and the Son. It was inevitable that these three Deity equals should unite. This union is the Paradise Trinity.
This Trinity is eternal, just like the central universe of Havona. There are two other Trinities that are coming into existence since the times of Havona. Why are there exactly two additional trinities? It is because the Father decided there would be just two additional levels of creation. He started out with the absolute level of existence. Then he decided to have two additional levels of existence. He decided to have a finite level. He also decided to have an absonite level. Power and personality are coming into existence on each of these two levels. Power and personality tend to come together in Trinity union.
The Paradise Trinity. This is the eternal Deity union of the Universal Father, the Eternal Son, and the Infinite Spirit. It always was, is, and will be; it is an eternal fact of existence; it is existential. But, as trinity begins to work on the two new levels of existence, then experience enters into the picture. This is the only Trinity that takes in all infinity. But, since this Trinity can experience, then Deity can experience. So we can have experiential Deity. This is why the growing appearance of God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and God the Absolute.
The other two trinities we call the "first experiential Trinity" and the "second experiential Trinity." We also call them the post-Havona Trinities. Neither of these two trinities can be infinite. Why? It is because they are made up of derived Deities -- derived Deities in contrast to the original Deities (Father, Son, and Spirit). These derived Deities are produced by the Paradise Trinity. In this way God is enriching the infinity of divinity. He could hardly enlarge the infinity of divinity, but he can enrich it. He is enriching it with experience. Whose experience? The experience of creatures and of Creators working on the finite level of existence and of others working on the absonite level of existence.
A trinity is a basic relationship. It is a basic fact of Deity -- that Deity unites in Trinity. The work of a Trinity fills the area of Deity action from border to border. When all of this Trinity work is added up, it adds up to a total. This total is a new Deity personality. There are three new totals of experience that are being added up on the three levels of finite, absonite, and absolute growth. These three totals are God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and God the Absolute. These are the three experiential Deities, the Deities who grow by experience. They get their original start from the Paradise Trinity, the original Trinity. Their continuing growth is dependent on three things: First of all they have to work at it themselves. Second, they are dependent on what the post-Havona Creators do; they are dependent on the Creator Sons, for example. And third, they are partly dependent on what the post-Havona Trinities do; they are dependent on the successes of the first and the second experiential Trinities.
We call these two post-Havona Trinities the Ultimate Experiential Trinity, and the Absolute Experiential Trinity. Neither one of them is fully in operation at the present time. They are coming into being. We can tell you something about them:
- 1. The Ultimate Trinity. This Trinity is now evolving. When it has completed its evolution it will be made up of the following beings: The Supreme Being, The Supreme Creator Personalities, and the Architects of the Master Universe. You know about the Supreme Being. The Supreme Creator Personalities are creators who make up the first three levels of God the Sevenfold -- Master Spirits, Ancients of Days, and Creator Sons. The Architects of the Master Universe are not finite beings; they are absonite beings. They are neither creatures nor creators. They are special universe planners. You might think of them as the intelligent and purposeful and living blueprints of the master universe. What will happen when this Ultimate Trinity really gets into operation? It will have a lot to do with completing the growth of God the Ultimate. This Trinity and God the Ultimate will work in the whole master universe. This is a very big place in which to work.
- 2. The Absolute Trinity. This is the second experiential Trinity. It too is in process of evolution. When it has completed its growth it will be made up of the following beings: God the Supreme, God the Ultimate, and the unrevealed Consummator of Universe Destiny and we are not going to tell you anything about him. This Absolute Trinity works on personal and on superpersonal levels. (Remember that absoniters are superpersonal). It also works right up to the borders of the non-personal. If it could ever complete its growth then we would have God the Absolute building up by experience on the foundations of the Deity Absolute.
We can see how the Ultimate Trinity can complete its growth. We do not see how the Absolute Trinity could complete its growth. How can you reach the end of infinity? If this Absolute Trinity can never complete growth then how can God the Absolute ever come into being? But, perhaps there is another way besides growth. Back in past eternity, the Father and the Son brought the original Trinity into existence by trinitization. This produced the Infinite Spirit on the one hand and brought about a peculiar union of the Father-Son on the other hand. We venture to speculate that God the Supreme and God the Ultimate might also trinitize at some remotely future time. If they ever did, then this act might trinitize God the Absolute on the one hand while bringing about a peculiar union of the Supreme-Ultimate on the other hand.
The philosophers of the universes sometimes talk about a Trinity of Trinities. This would be a Trinity made up of the three Trinities -- Paradise Trinity, Ultimate Trinity, and Absolute trinity. It would be both existential and experiential. It would be a Trinity Infinite. If Trinities always result in new Deity personalizations, then what would the Trinity of Trinities personalize as? Possibly the function of this Trinity would reveal the personality of the Universal Father in an infinite way -- as the I AM. But, regardless of all this speculation, the Paradise Trinity is potentially infinite because the Universal Father actually is infinite.
The papers that follow this Foreword are going to tell you about the character of the Universal Father and something about the nature of his Paradise associates. We are also going to attempt to describe the perfect central universe and the seven superuniverses that circle around it. In telling you this story, we have to carry out the instructions given us by our superiors, the rulers of our superuniverse. These instructions lay down certain rules which we are to follow in telling you new truths and in clearing up what you know. These rules tell us to use human concepts and ideas whenever we can. We are to use the best ideas that human beings have had. When we simply cannot find a human concept to use then we can tell you about how we look at these things. Then we will give you our own ideas.
This is not the first revelation of truth on your world. Each revelation must take in the best that is known at the time and must use it. Each revelation starts out with the old and then goes on to give new truth and to better sort out and clarify what you know. Now have we come to do this job of telling you about God and his universe associates. But before we even started out to tell you this story, we carefully studied the ideas that human beings have had about these matters. We studied the ideas that human beings have had, not only in the present but also in the past. We studied the ideas that God knowing mortals have had. As a result of this study, we selected more than one thousand concepts. These human concepts we have adopted as the foundation for our story. Wherein these human concepts are not good enough to tell the truth as we have been instructed to tell it, then we will add to them. We will add to these human concepts by drawing upon our own ideas and superior knowledge. We do know about the reality and divinity of the Paradise Deities. We also know about the universe in which they live -- the perfect universe of Havona.
We are well aware of the difficulties of our task. We know that we cannot put our language into your language; too much is lost in translation. We are going to talk about concepts of divinity and eternity. We are going to use a language that has only finite words that can be understood by human minds. But we know that we will have help. We are not just dependent on mind alone. We know that a fragment of God himself lives within each human mind. We also know that the Spirit of Truth lives with each human soul. We further know that these spirit forces are going to help human beings understand what we are talking about. They are going to help you understand what spiritual values are all about. They are going to help you understand what universe meanings are all about. But most of all, they are going to do something else, something much more important. These spirits of Divine Presence are really able to help you to spiritually understand a certain kind of truth. This is the truth which helps you to grow, to make progress in personal religious experience. This is the truth by which you become conscious of the presence and reality of God.
(This simplification was compiled by William S. Sadler, Jr., and he accepts responsibility for the sacrifice of meaning, for the dilution of fact, and for the distortion of truth. Much meaning has been sacrificed to make some meaning clear. Much fact has been diluted to simplify the understanding of some fact. Much truth has been distorted so that some truth could be more easily comprehended.)