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How I Found the Urantia Book—POLLY PARKE FRIEDMAN (1960) 


MY MOM, GRACE WALKER, was a member of the Forum in the ’40s, but I wasn’t at all interested in her activities at the time. I was an intensely independent teenager who thought her mother was nice but a little wacky for her age.

After college, and two years into a teaching career, I was on the brink of marriage and went into a panic about my decision. Because my mother paid for his services, I went to see Dr. Sadler for advice. He was very formal, just like the psychiatrists in the movies. A large dog, like a Great Dane, stood at his side as a sentinel of affirmation.

The doctor told me that my and my fiancé’s statistics indicated that the marriage would not work out. Again I thought I knew best, and went through with the marriage to show this doctor he was wrong. Alas, years later, the marriage ended as predicted.

In the meantime I moved from Illinois to California and became a Valley Girl. My mom, again on her toes, sent me a copy of the first printing of the Urantia Book in 1955. I put it on the shelf where I stored odds and ends and it sat there for about five years.

Sometime in 1960, while I was experiencing low physical health and mental uncertainties, I took the book down from the shelf, drew the drapes in the bedroom, shut the door, and began to read in secret. I was going to prove this was all a hoax and expose the real writers—whoever they were!

Well, the real truth started slowly to get to me in a big way. It was months before I told my mom, and then only after I had visited the one and only Los Angeles study group, then held in Hancock Park. There I met some beautiful people who, I discovered, were quite normal—at least for L.A.! That was the beginning.

Trying to be cautious, I held off joining the Los Angeles Urantia Society until 1965. It’s been surprises and crises ever since, but the teachings have become an inseparable part of me. I’d like to be able to tell Doc Sadler that he was right on all counts, and that I liked his dog.

My mom already knows.

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Polly during the 1960s