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How I Found the Urantia Book—JOAN BATSON MULLINS (1977) 

IN 1977 I was living in upstate New York. I had been brought up as a Catholic, and had examined various other religious persuasions. Feeling a deep hunger for something more, I began to pray for a teacher. But I did not trust “gurus,” nor did I wish to be associated with a cult. So I prayed for a teacher in the form of a book.

I began searching libraries and bookstores. On occasion I would borrow a car and drive to different towns to visit bookstores, hoping I would somehow be led to the book I was praying to find. I bought mainly metaphysical books, but they were all disappointing to me.

One afternoon a friend dropped by to invite me to a party a few blocks from my apartment. I declined, but she persuaded me by saying, “Joan, I know you are looking for a book. You should come to this party because the guy who’s throwing it is an intellectual and has a huge personal library.” As we walked I could feel my anticipation growing.

We arrived at the party, and everyone was gathered in the kitchen. I immediately spotted the library just beyond, and barely paused to say hello as I made my way over to it. As I entered the first of two rooms of floor-to-ceiling books, my eye was drawn to a single volume across the room. I walked over, reached up, and took it off the shelf. It was the Urantia Book.

As I sat down in a rocking chair and started skimming the contents pages, I stopped at the words “Thought Adjuster.” I remember thinking, “My thoughts need adjusting.” So I turned to that section and started reading.

Time seemed to stand still. I was so engrossed, I did not notice the host of the party was squatting beside me until he spoke. “That’s an unusual book.” I was so excited by what I was reading I blurted out, “Who wrote this book?” He referred me back to the table of contents and showed me the names of some of the authors of the various papers.

He went on to explain that he was a scientist—a geologist—and that he had been given the Urantia Book by a hitchhiker he had picked up. He was astonished by the scientific content of the book, especially the geological content. He said the continental drift theory was especially advanced, and he could hardly believe someone had so clearly postulated the phenomenon of plate tectonics in 1955.

He told me that while on a trip to Chicago he decided to look up the “scientist who had written the book.” At 533 Diversey Parkway he was surprised to find only “two old ladies” who told him there was no scientist, and no human author to meet. They said the names of the spiritual authors are in the contents pages of the book. They added that the book “speaks for itself.”

“You mean there is no guru? No church?”

“No,” he assured me, “just the book.”

That was what I needed to know in order to openly explore it. As I looked at his earnest face, I was moved to ask: “Did you find answers about God in this book?”

He seemed startled. “Oh, no. I am an atheist. I keep the book because it is a phenomenon. You are welcome to borrow it if you wish.”

Borrow it I did. After a few days of intense reading, I knew this was the book I’d been searching for.

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