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How I Found the Urantia Book—DAVE TIBBETTS (1976) 

RAISED IN a fundamentalist Lutheran environment, I took catechism classes. The ministers’ questions and rote answers were supposed to lead to the “inescapable conclusion” that we Lutherans were the truly anointed and enlightened ones. Instead, they had the opposite effect on me and generated questions such as, “How come God plays favorites and picked me over the less fortunate?” This line of thinking inevitably caused me to reject virtually everything I’d been told. I became agnostic with atheistic leanings. I joined the Air Force, and flexed my new-found philosophical and religious freedom in a search for bottom-line truth, a search that lasted several years.

On leaving the service in 1974, I was still looking. I joined the Unitarian Universalists; I liked their hands-off approach to the unknowables and their focus, instead, on being good to one another here and now. But still, I felt the drive to find something, somewhere, that had an absolutely, undeniably factual basis. I was starting to lose my mental glue. Reality gets a little shaky if you have nothing to anchor your belief system. That was the low point and the starting point for me.

Having come to the conclusion that I knew nothing, I was open to truly learning. That’s when it happened. I was sitting at my bench at work, concentrating on wire-wrapping an electronic circuit board, when a billboard-sized announcement flashed inside my head: “Truth is not fact, but a state of realization.” It nearly knocked me off my stool. My recovery was assured; I now realized that my truth would continuously change and my understanding grow.

At about this time, I was invited to a party after work by a fellow who was a friend of a friend. As the party progressed, I voiced some of my searching questions during a philosophical “bull session.” Shortly thereafter, the fellow said, “I’ve got something I think you’d be interested in.” It was, of course, Big Blue! I thumbed through the table of contents and knew I had to have the book. I copied down Urantia Foundation’s address and phone number and ordered my book the next day.

When it arrived, I tried in vain to read the Foreword. I saw the Jesus papers in the back of the book, but just set them aside mentally as I was not ready to deal with them; I was still severely rejecting my earlier fundamentalist Christian teachings and had a knee-jerk, negative reaction to anything that had Jesus’ name associated with it. It took fourteen years of my occasionally pulling the book off the shelf and putting it back again before my Thought Adjuster was able to drain the poison from me, allowing me to begin reading the story of Adam and Eve. I fell in love. Here, finally, was something that felt true.

And I’ve been making all my friends and relatives a little crazy ever since. My Thought Adjuster is now trying to train me in the art of sharing. You’d think I’d know better than to become a fundamentalist myself, but when you discover the keys to the universe and beyond, it’s a little difficult to be self-restrained!

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