Dear Urantia Book students and friends,
Have you noticed? The stores are filled with scary images, while piles of candy in large bags await shoppers? Not only candy, but kits on how to carve your pumpkin, and every sort of orange and black decorations to create a frightful festive occasion.
Selecting just the right pumpkin is as important as choosing the Thanksgiving turkey, or the Christmas tree in December.
Some neighborhoods go all out, decorating each house for the dubious delight of kids, out Trick-Or-Treating?
Or is it more a delight for the adults to festoon their houses and yards with tombstones, bats, brooms, and other images from the olden imagination about haunting and ghosts? Is this a way we collectively laugh at our inheritance of "tales from the crypt", or our fear of witches and warlocks?
The Urantia Book traces some very unusual developments in the evolution of mortal beliefs, some powerful enough to actually cause death by fright. Our early ancestors had no such security-of-place as we have been able to evolve in recent years. The beasts of the forest, the spells of the shaman or "wise-woman", and the superstitions about charms and magic held powerful sway over early human life.
Thus, our calendar brings us to the last day of the month of October, when the imagination is unleashed, to bring about a festival of images that carry only some of the power that, once upon a time, they held in the minds of folks who lacked faith in God's mercy and love. Even today, we find those who carry charms, or hang a talisman on the rear-view mirror in their car. You may occasionally see a horse-shoe over the front door of a home. I know of two folks in my office who will "knock on wood" just to be safe.
So, once we have gotten past the 31st of October, the decorations come down and the pumpkin is outdoors, we find an opposite religious day to clear away the haunting and the ghosts. This is the Feast of All Saints, on November 1st, followed by the Feast of All Souls on November 2nd, also known as The Day of The Dead in some cultures. It is a time when thanks is raised for women and men whose lives showed forth their faith and who became known and venerated as Saints. All Souls is a commemorative time for remembering our own dear departed relatives and friends.
I'm perhaps saying things you already know too well, and if so I am glad you know all this. It is an odd juxtaposition to turn about from Halloween to All Saints, and to do it overnight. Of course, many students of the Urantia Book have stepped away from olden observances.
Yet, this is a time when we may say a prayer of thanks for God's blessings in the lives of those who became infused with The Spirit, and who added to the literature and faith-traditions of various religions.
We are supposed to have fun with Halloween, and to share that sense of enjoyment with children, of all ages. However, the following days may be a time of tugging at our hearts as we remember and honor those who have died.
I am personally grateful to have been relieved of superstitious nonsense from my youth. My fears of hellfire, damnation, the agonizing concerns about whether I was angering God or not, and my sense of isolation in the universe, have been lifted from my shoulders. I sing praise to the influence on my mind of our Universe Mother's Adjutants and her Holy Spirit, of Michael's Spirit of Truth, and the never-ending indwelling of my Mystery Monitor.
Perhaps you will enjoy moments of reflection as the Holiday Season begins, and if so, may you find joy in the salvation we have been given, from all that would attempt to influence us to be fearful and credulous. Thanks to our heavenly helpers and revealers for this!
The following paragraphs are a sobering reminder from a Brilliant Evening Star of all that hangs in the balance, as we evolve.
Stephen Zendt, Walnut Creek, CA
88:6.7 Gradually science is removing the gambling element from life. But if modern methods of education should fail, there would be an almost immediate reversion to the primitive beliefs in magic. These superstitions still linger in the minds of many so-called civilized people. Language contains many fossils which testify that the race has long been steeped in magical superstition, such words as spellbound, ill-starred, possessions, inspiration, spirit away, ingenuity, entrancing, thunderstruck, and astonished. And intelligent human beings still believe in good luck, the evil eye, and astrology.
88:6.8 Ancient magic was the cocoon of modern science, indispensable in its time but now no longer useful. And so the phantasms of ignorant superstition agitated the primitive minds of men until the concepts of science could be born. Today, Urantia is in the twilight zone of this intellectual evolution. One half the world is grasping eagerly for the light of truth and the facts of scientific discovery, while the other half languishes in the arms of ancient superstition and but thinly disguised magic.
88:6.9 [Presented by a Brilliant Evening Star of Nebadon.]
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