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How I Found the Urantia Book—THOMAS ORJALA (1969) 


i was born in 1949 and raised in a poor, rural county in northern Minnesota. My spiritual training was Methodist; I was joyed to know there was a God but confused by my inability to see him in spite of years of church and Sunday school. My burning question was: If God is omnipresent, where the heck is he? Why is he hiding from me? I found myself depressed and disappointed by life as I graduated from high school.

In hopes of finding some relief, I fled home. I eventually made it to the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco and “dropped out” in hopes of finding an identity I could claim as mine. I studied with the gurus of the day: Stephen Gaskin, Yogi Bhajan, Swami Satchidananda, and others. I danced with the Hari Krishnas and Sufi Sam, and sat in meditation at the Zen Center. I joined in Holy Man Jams, shared jugs of wine and joints at Hippie Hill, went to rock concerts with the Dead and the Airplane, and took trips to the mountains to run naked in the woods.

Then, one day in 1969, I met a man with wire-rimmed glasses named Arthur. He had the ability to move through life with a magical ease totally unfamiliar to an introverted farm boy like me. It seemed that whenever a discussion would arise about matters of spiritual importance, Arthur would open his blue book and read from it. I don’t recall ever “getting” anything that he said, but I was curious about why he had so much faith in this book. One day I asked to see it.

As I turned the pages and read various paragraphs, I felt the words speak directly to me—to my soul—as if they were alive. In less than ten minutes I knew I had found the answer to the question of my youth. I immediately went to the bookstore and bought a copy.

Now I am the guy with the wire-rimmed glasses, daily finding opportunities to share the revelation.

Thank you, Arthur, wherever you are!

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