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How I Found the Urantia Book—KAREN JEPPESON (1975) 

I GREW UP in the Lutheran Church. I was a “Jesus freak” for a time, but never intensely—it was just fun. I asked a lot of questions. The answers went round in circles after a while, so I quit asking.

As a senior in high school, I was clued in by a gifted teacher to the truth of myth and the falsehood of what we often consider fact. He then taught our class Eastern religions from the inside. I did an independent study of religion for an advanced seminar. Though I didn’t realize it at the time, my teacher was leading me to the understanding that there are many facets of personal religious experience, that each person interprets his or her religious longings and experience in the light of his or her cultural beliefs. This meant there was a truth in religions, that there was one thing that linked all religions together, making them more than a giant psychological delusion.

What was this truth? It had to be experienced.

I became interested in Gestalt psychology, then drugs, then mysticism. Just as I was starting to get in over my head, a friend said, “I know a book you might be interested in. It’s the history of earth, written by beings beyond time and space.”

I sensed this fantastic statement might be true, for by now I had seen that while all religions had truth, some contained more truth than others. In my mind there was a triangle of truth; some religions were closer to the top, others near the bottom, but none at the peak. I thought maybe the truth was beyond what we might know on earth, so my intellect and my soul were prepared for a revelation from beyond this world.

A couple of days later I went to the bookstore where I had been told I could find this Urantia (Earth) Book. As I was paging through the table of contents, another woman came in to look at the book. Excited to meet another Urantia Book reader, I began asking her questions such as how she had come to find the book. Her brief and meaningful replies astounded me and made me even more curious. She said she would be having a meeting of Iowa City Urantians in two weeks’ time and that the area representative would be there.

After such a meaningful coincidence I bought the book. I remember vividly walking into the Urantia gathering two weeks later. The atmosphere was so high I felt like I was walking two feet off the ground. At first I was very suspicious. Will they be like Scientologists and ask for money? Will they warp my mind, like the pseudo-sciences I had studied? None of this happened.

I read the book that summer. Every day more doubts and fears fall to the truths of living as revealed in the Urantia Book.

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Karen at Julia Fenderson's home in 1977