It seems no matter how “advanced” we like to believe we are, there’s always this basic need for answers about life. No matter how technologically advanced or wealthy we get, we keep searching for a deep sense. People will put their faith into believing just about anything without some minimal verification. I understand the need to know where we come from and our purpose in life. It also appears to me that some great manipulators and deceivers have also discovered this and so try to take advantage of the vulnerable. There are now thousands of different sects and spiritual groups around the world that take root from the main religions. Each one of them offers their own interpretations of life from the beginning, their own worshiping system and mythologies. I don’t have time to discuss them all so I’m just going to focus on one in particular because a colleague at work had mentioned it to me recently. I decided to do a little research to see what it was all about because I am so damn fed up of all those postmodern pseudo-spirituality movements.
It’s called the Urantia Book. It is said that the author is anonymous but we are told that it was actually communicated by some “celestial beings”, yeah like aliens. The book is managed by a group of people (or a single guy) who call themselves the Urantia Foundation, “revealing the mysteries of God, the Universe, Jesus and ourselves”. That sounds very cool actually why would anyone not be interested to know who God is finally? It must be legit too I mean its written on the book cover who cares!? So here’s how the story goes according to the Urantia Foundation: in 1911 a guy named William S. Sadler, a psychiatrist, received this weired visitor that blurted stories while he was in some trance from which he could not wake up. This mysterious man was actually believed to be serving as a communication channel, through which the said celestial beings were speaking to us. William Sadler decided to write everything and so the Urantia Book was born. No body ever saw or witnessed this except for William who supposedly talked about it to a group of people named the “Contact Commission”. This cannot be proven because according to the Urantia Foundation, none of them is still alive and their names cannot be revealed in case people want to adore them… yeahhhh…
I’m starting to smell bullshit here, so let’s get digging shall we? Let’s start with what we know: William S. Sadler was a very busy man, member of many associations and foundations, such as the Kellogg Foundation and the Seventh-Day Adventists. Also married to Lena Kellogg… wait there are too many Kellogg associations here. I don’t like this coincidence a bit. Whenever I hear the name Kellogg, it automatically rings an alarm in my head. I previously wrote a blog entry a few weeks ago (here) about the racist foundations of eugenics. But before we go forward let’s learn a bit about the Kelloggs. You see, the name is more than a cereal brand. In 1876 John Harvey Kellogg was a controversial medical doctor who administered the Adventist hospital in Battle Creek Michigan. He was a prominent member of the Seventh Day Adventists who settled in great numbers in Battle Creek more than a century ago. The Adventists, sincere and dedicated fundamentalists, observed the Sabbath on Saturday and believed in the Second Coming. They also believed that the White people were sent from God to populate the Earth, that “Niggers”, “Indians” and other none-Whites were to serve them. Many Advantist leaders supported the doctrine of Arianism. By providing his patients with plans to readjust their diet and lifestyle J.H Kellogg put many new items on the market under catchy names, such as the Corn Flakes. His name became for ever associated with a brand of cereals, although he regretted to be remembered this way. He was also the founder of the Race Betterment Foundation, which became a major center of the new eugenics movement in America. Kellogg was in favor of racial segregation and believed that immigrants and non-whites would damage the gene pool of pure White people. It also happens that the founder of the Urantia Book, William Sadler, was also a member of this foundation.
According to Martin Gardner, author of “The Great Cult Mystery”, Wilfred Custer Kellogg was the “channeller” Sadler talked about. Wilfred Custer Kellogg was actually the descendant and hereditary of his uncle’s legacy, J.H. Kellogg. In fact there was no channeling whatsoever. Just basic pen and paper editing done with his brother-in-law William Sadler. Besides, the Urantia Foundation is a cult and nothing more. Not so much different from the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Raelians, Scientologists, or even Mormons. Their beliefs are based on nothing else but blinding faith and empty hopes. The scientific facts stated for example are outdated and based on knowledge known only at the time the book was written. Highly irrelevant if it were communicated from a well advanced race of aliens. The described formation of the solar system is consistent with the Chamberlin-Moulton planetesimal hypothesis discarded in the 1940’s. Some species are said to have evolved suddenly from single mutations without transitional species, but the idea has not been supported since 1930. Controversial statements in the book support the idea of distinctive “spheres” in society based on physical differences such as color. According to Gardner, William S. Sadler and Wilfred Custer Kellogg who wrote some eugenicist works, had a hand in editing or writing the book, and that this is how the ideas were included. Another fact is that the book is said to have been published in 1955, giving more time for the editors to edit old scientific facts to satisfy the needs. Furthermore, in recent years the book had shown that it was edited again from its earlier versions, to include more accurate scientific facts, so they make it look like the whole thing was prophesied in 1911.
It’s easy to fall for any philosophy that preaches peace, love, acceptance and equality for all. Who in their right mind wouldn’t want such a thing for all of us? No cult is going to win you over by stating that they worship murder and rape, well maybe satanism. So obviously we all want the same answers about life, where we come from, where are we going. We need to feel special, accepted and loved. We want peace for everyone and reigning harmony for the planet. These are all simple core values preached from all major religions since the dawn of scriptures. The problem lies in the interpretations humans make of each and single word, instead of just retaining the essential message that can be resumed on one page. I don’t care to know about the birth of life and if there are extraterrestrials. Sure it’s nice to know these facts but aren’t essential for me. What’s essential is how I live my life in the NOW and how I make the best of it. Trying to live in peace with my surrounding and make a positive foot print in this world. These are the things that matter. Finding my own truth.
On a final note, I leave you with a Buddhist parable that illustrates well the futility of too much knowledge: It is said that one time a man was hit by a poisonous arrow and had a few days to live unless he got an antidote. But the man was more preoccupied in knowing who had shot the arrow, where was the man, what was his name, why did he do this. He also wondered what the poison was, what kind of arrow was it, the kind of wood and where was it made. In the end the man died because he had wasted his time wondering with useless questions instead of looking for the antidote.
- “How The Urantia Book Came Into Existence” by William S. Sadler, Jr., February 18, 1962.
- Affidavit of Dr. Meredith Sprunger on October 24, 1998 regarding the origin of The Urantia Book
- Mather, George A. and Nichols, Larry A. (1993). Dictionary of Cults, Sects, Religions and the Occult. Zondervan Publishing House. ISBN 0310531004
- House, Dr. H. Wayne (2000). Charts of Cults, Sects, and Religious Movements. Zondervan. ISBN 0-310-38551-2
- “Some Human Sources of The Urantia Book” by Matthew Block, originally published in 1992. Describes suspected parallels Block found between The Urantia Book and possible human sources of material.
- Stevie Ray Vaughan : Caught in the Crossfire-ISBN 978-0316160698
- Stamhuis, Meijer, and Zevenhuizen. Hugo de Vries on heredity, 1889-1903. Statistics, Mendelian laws, pangenes, mutations., Isis. 1999 Jun;90(2):238-67
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