Paper 118 : Supremeˆ and Ultimateˆ — Time and Spaceˆ
118:0.1 CONCERNING the several natures of Deityˆ, it may be said:
118:0.2 1. The Father is self-existent self.
118:0.3 2. The Son is coexistent self.
118:0.4 3. The Spiritˆ is conjoint-existent self.
118:0.5 4. The Supremeˆ is evolutionaryˆ-experiential self.
118:0.6 5. The Sevenfoldˆ is self-distributive divinityˆ.
118:0.7 6. The Ultimateˆ is transcendentalˆ-experiential self.
118:0.8 7. The Absoluteˆ is existentialˆ-experiential self.
118:0.9 While Godˆ the Sevenfoldˆˆ is indispensable to the evolutionaryˆ attainment of the Supremeˆ, the Supremeˆ is also indispensable to the eventual emergence of the Ultimateˆ. And the dual presence of the Supremeˆ and the Ultimateˆ constitutes the basic association of subabsoluteˆ and derived Deityˆ, for they are interdependently complemental in the attainment of destinyˆ. Together they constitute the experientialˆ bridge linking the beginnings and the completions of all creative growth in the master universeˆˆ.
118:0.10 Creative growth is unending but ever satisfying, endless in extent but always punctuated by those personalityˆ-satisfying moments of transient goal attainment which serve so effectively as the mobilization preludes to new adventures in cosmic growth, universeˆ exploration, and Deityˆ attainment.
118:0.11 While the domain of mathematics is beset with qualitative limitations, it does provide the finiteˆ mindˆ with a conceptual basis of contemplating infinity. There is no quantitative limitation to numbers, even in the comprehension of the finiteˆ mindˆ. No matter how large the number conceived, you can always envisage one more being added. And also, you can comprehend that that is short of infinity, for no matter how many times you repeat this addition to number, still always one more can be added.
118:0.12 At the same time, the infinite series can be totaled at any given point, and this total (more properly, a subtotal) provides the fullness of the sweetness of goal attainment for a given person at a given time and status. But sooner or later, this same person begins to hunger and yearn for new and greater goals, and such adventures in growth will be forever forthcoming in the fullness of time and the cycles of eternityˆ.
118:0.13 Each successive universeˆ age is the antechamber of the following era of cosmic growth, and each universeˆ epochˆ provides immediate destinyˆ for all preceding stages. Havonaˆ, in and of itself, is a perfectˆ, but perfectˆion-limited, creation; Havonaˆ perfectˆion, expanding out into the evolutionaryˆ superuniversesˆ, finds not only cosmic destinyˆ but also liberation from the limitations of pre-evolutionary existence.
1. Time and Eternityˆ
118:1.1 It is helpful to man’s cosmic orientation to attain all possible comprehension of Deityˆ’s relation to the cosmos. While absoluteˆ Deityˆ is eternalˆ in nature, the Gods are related to time as an experience in eternityˆ. In the evolutionaryˆ universesˆ eternityˆ is temporal everlastingness — the everlasting now.
118:1.2 The personalityˆ of the mortalˆ creature may eternalˆize by self-identification with the indwellˆing spiritˆ through the technique of choosing to do the will of the Father. Such a consecration of will is tantamount to the realization of eternityˆ-reality of purpose. This means that the purpose of the creature has become fixed with regard to the succession of moments; stated otherwise, that the succession of moments will witness no change in creature purpose. A million or a billion moments makes no difference. Number has ceased to have meaning with regard to the creature’s purpose. Thus does creature choice plus Godˆ’s choice eventuateˆ in the eternalˆ realities of the never-ending union of the spiritˆ of Godˆ and the nature of man in the everlasting service of the children of Godˆ and of their Paradiseˆ Fatherˆ.
118:1.3 There is a direct relationship between maturity and the unit of time consciousness in any given intellect. The time unit may be a day, a year, or a longer period, but inevitably it is the criterion by which the conscious self evaluates the circumstances of life, and by which the conceiving intellect measures and evaluates the facts of temporal existence.
118:1.4 Experience, wisdom, and judgment are the concomitants of the lengthening of the time unit in mortalˆ experience. As the human mindˆ reckons backward into the past, it is evaluating past experience for the purpose of bringing it to bear on a present situation. As mindˆ reaches out into the future, it is attempting to evaluate the future significance of possible action. And having thus reckoned with both experience and wisdom, the human will exercises judgment-decision in the present, and the plan of action thus born of the past and the future becomes existent.
118:1.5 In the maturity of the developing self, the past and future are brought together to illuminate the true meaning of the present. As the self matures, it reaches further and further back into the past for experience, while its wisdom forecasts seek to penetrate deeper and deeper into the unknown future. And as the conceiving self extends this reach ever further into both past and future, so does judgment become less and less dependent on the momentary present. In this way does decision-action begin to escape from the fetters of the moving present, while it begins to take on the aspects of past-future significance.
118:1.6 Patience is exercised by those mortalsˆ whose time units are short; true maturity transcends patience by a forbearance born of real understanding.
118:1.7 To become mature is to live more intensely in the present, at the same time escaping from the limitations of the present. The plans of maturity, founded on past experience, are coming into being in the present in such manner as to enhance the values of the future.
118:1.8 The time unit of immaturity concentrates meaning-valueˆ into the present moment in such a way as to divorce the present of its true relationship to the not-present — the past-future. The time unit of maturity is proportioned so to reveal the co-ordinate relationship of past-present-future that the self begins to gain insight into the wholeness of events, begins to view the landscape of time from the panoramic perspective of broadened horizons, begins perhaps to suspect the nonbeginning, nonending eternalˆ continuumˆ, the fragments of which are called time.
118:1.9 On the levels of the infinite and the absoluteˆ the moment of the present contains all of the past as well as all of the future. I AM signifies also I WAS and I WILL BE. And this represents our best concept of eternityˆ and the eternalˆ.
118:1.10 On the absoluteˆ and eternalˆ level, potential reality is just as meaningful as actualˆ reality. Only on the finiteˆ level and to time-boundˆ creatures does there appear to be such a vast difference. To Godˆ, as absoluteˆ, an ascendingˆ mortalˆ who has made the eternalˆ decisionˆ is already a Paradiseˆ finaliterˆ. But the Universal Fatherˆ, through the indwellˆing Thought Adjusterˆˆ, is not thus limited in awareness but can also know of, and participate in, every temporal struggle with the problems of the creature ascent from animallike to Godlikeˆ levels of existence.
2. Omnipresenceˆ and Ubiquity
118:2.1 The ubiquity of Deityˆ must not be confused with the ultimacyˆ of the divineˆ omnipresenceˆ. It is volitionalˆ with the Universal Fatherˆ that the Supremeˆ, the Ultimateˆ, and the Absoluteˆ should compensate, co-ordinate, and unify his time-space ubiquity and his time-space-transcendedˆ omnipresenceˆ with his timelessˆ and spacelˆessˆ universal and absoluteˆ presence. And you should remember that, while Deityˆ ubiquity may be so often spaceˆ associated, it is not necessarily time conditioned.
118:2.2 As mortalˆ and morontiaˆ ascendersˆ you progressively discern Godˆ through the ministry of Godˆ the Sevenfoldˆˆ. Through Havonaˆ you discover Godˆ the Supremeˆˆ. On Paradiseˆ you find him as a person, and then as finalitersˆ you will presently attempt to know him as Ultimateˆ. Being finalitersˆ, there would seem to be but one course to pursue after having attained the Ultimateˆ, and that would be to begin the quest of the Absoluteˆ. No finaliterˆ will be disturbed by the uncertainties of the attainment of the Deityˆ Absoluteˆˆ since at the end of the supremeˆ and ultimateˆ ascensionsˆ he encountered Godˆ the Fatherˆ. Such finalitersˆ will no doubt believe that, even if they should be successful in finding Godˆ the Absoluteˆˆ, they would only be discovering the same Godˆ, the Paradiseˆ Fatherˆ manifesting himself on more nearly infinite and universal levels. Undoubtedly the attainment of Godˆ in absoluteˆ would reveal the Primal Ancestor of universesˆ as well as the Final Father of personalities.
118:2.3 Godˆ the Supremeˆˆ may not be a demonstration of the time-space omnipresenceˆ of Deityˆ, but he is literally a manifestation of divineˆ ubiquity. Between the spiritˆual presence of the Creatorˆ and the material manifestations of creation there exists a vast domain of the ubiquitous becoming — the universeˆ emergence of evolutionaryˆ Deityˆ.
118:2.4 If Godˆ the Supremeˆˆ ever assumes direct control of the universesˆ of time and spaceˆ, we are confident such a Deityˆ administration will function under the overcontrol of the Ultimateˆ. In such an event Godˆ the Ultimateˆ would begin to become manifest to the universesˆ of time as the transcendentalˆ Almightyˆ (the Omnipotentˆ) exercising the overcontrol of supertimeˆ and transcended spaceˆˆ concerning the administrative functions of the Almightyˆ Supremeˆˆ.
118:2.5 The mortalˆ mindˆ may ask, even as we do: If the evolution of Godˆ the Supremeˆˆ to administrative authority in the grand universeˆˆ is attended by augmented manifestations of Godˆ the Ultimateˆ, will a corresponding emergence of Godˆ the Ultimateˆ in the postulated universesˆ of outer spaceˆˆ be attended by similar and enhanced revelations of Godˆ the Absoluteˆˆ? But we really do not know.
3. Time-Space Relationships
118:3.1 Only by ubiquity could Deityˆ unify time-space manifestations to the finiteˆ conception, for time is a succession of instants while spaceˆ is a system of associated points. You do, after all, perceive time by analysis and spaceˆ by synthesis. You co-ordinate and associate these two dissimilar conceptions by the integrating insight of personalityˆ. Of all the animal world only man possesses this time-space perceptibility. To an animal, motion has a meaning, but motion exhibits value only to a creature of personalityˆ status.
118:3.2 Things are time conditioned, but truth is timelessˆ. The more truth you know, the more truth you are, the more of the past you can understand and of the future you can comprehend.
118:3.3 Truth is inconcussible — forever exempt from all transient vicissitudes, albeit never dead and formal, always vibrant and adaptable — radiantly alive. But when truth becomes linked with fact, then both time and spaceˆ condition its meanings and correlate its values. Such realities of truth wedded to fact become concepts and are accordingly relegated to the domain of relative cosmic realities.
118:3.4 The linking of the absoluteˆ and eternalˆ truth of the Creatorˆ with the factual experience of the finiteˆ and temporal creature eventuatesˆ a new and emerging value of the Supremeˆ. The concept of the Supremeˆ is essential to the co-ordination of the divineˆ and unchanging overworld with the finiteˆ and ever-changing underworld.
118:3.5 Spaceˆ comes the nearest of all nonabsoluteˆ things to being absoluteˆ. Spaceˆ is apparently absolutelˆy ultimateˆ. The real difficulty we have in understanding spaceˆ on the material level is due to the fact that, while material bodies exist in spaceˆ, spaceˆ also exists in these same material bodies. While there is much about spaceˆ that is absoluteˆ, that does not mean that spaceˆ is absoluteˆ.
118:3.6 It may help to an understanding of spaceˆ relationships if you would conjecture that, relatively speaking, spaceˆ is after all a property of all material bodies. Hence, when a body moves through spaceˆ, it also takes all its properties with it, even the spaceˆ which is in and of such a moving body.
118:3.7 All patternsˆ of reality occupy spaceˆ on the material levels, but spiritˆ patternsˆ only exist in relation to spaceˆ; they do not occupy or displace spaceˆ, neither do they contain it. But to us the master riddle of spaceˆ pertains to the patternˆ of an idea. When we enter the mindˆ domain, we encounter many a puzzle. Does the patternˆ — the reality — of an idea occupy spaceˆ? We really do not know, albeit we are sure that an idea patternˆ does not contain spaceˆ. But it would hardly be safe to postulate that the immaterial is always nonspatialˆ.
4. Primary and Secondary Causation
118:4.1 Many of the theologic difficulties and the metaphysical dilemmas of mortalˆ man are due to man’s mislocation of Deityˆ personalityˆ and consequent assignment of infinite and absoluteˆ attributes to subordinate Divinityˆ and to evolutionaryˆ Deityˆ. You must not forget that, while there is indeed a true First Cause, there are also a host of co-ordinate and subordinate causes, both associate and secondary causes.
118:4.2 The vital distinction between first causes and second causes is that first causes produce original effects which are free from inheritance of any factor derived from any antecedentˆ causation. Secondary causes yield effects which invariably exhibit inheritance from other and preceding causation.
118:4.3 The purely static potentials inherent in the Unqualified Absoluteˆˆ are reactive to those causations of the Deityˆ Absoluteˆˆ which are produced by the actions of the Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ. In the presence of the Universal Absoluteˆˆ these causative-impregnated static potentials forthwith become active and responsive to the influence of certain transcendentalˆ agencies whose actions result in the transmutation of these activated potentials to the status of true universeˆ possibilities for development, actualˆized capacities for growth. It is upon such matured potentials that the creatorsˆ and controllers of the grand universeˆˆ enact the never-ending drama of cosmic evolution.
118:4.4 Causation, disregarding existentialsˆ, is threefoldˆ in its basic constitution. As it operates in this universeˆ age and concerning the finiteˆ level of the seven superuniversesˆ, it may be conceived as follows:
118:4.5 1. Activation of static potentials. The establishment of destinyˆ in the Universal Absoluteˆˆ by the actions of the Deityˆ Absoluteˆˆ, operating in and upon the Unqualified Absoluteˆˆ and in consequence of the volitionalˆ mandates of the Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ.
118:4.6 2. Eventuationˆ of universeˆ capacities. This involves the transformation of undifferentiated potentials into segregated and defined plans. This is the act of the Ultimacyˆ of Deityˆ and of the manifold agencies of the transcendentalˆ level. Such acts are in perfectˆ anticipation of the future needs of the entire master universeˆˆ. It is in connection with the segregation of potentials that the Architects of the Master Universeˆˆˆ exist as the veritable embodiments of the Deityˆ concept of the universesˆ. Their plans appear to be ultimatelˆy spaceˆ limited in extent by the concept periphery of the master universeˆˆ, but as plans they are not otherwise conditioned by time or spaceˆ.
118:4.7 3. Creation and evolution of universeˆ actualsˆ. It is upon a cosmos impregnated by the capacity-producing presence of the Ultimacyˆ of Deityˆ that the Supremeˆ Creatorsˆ operate to effect the time transmutations of matured potentials into experientialˆ actualsˆ. Within the master universeˆˆ all actualˆization of potential reality is limited by ultimateˆ capacity for development and is time-space conditioned in the final stages of emergence. The Creatorˆ Sonsˆ going out from Paradiseˆ are, in actualˆity, transformative creatorsˆ in the cosmic sense. But this in no manner invalidates man’s concept of them as creators; from the finiteˆ viewpoint they certainly can and do create.
5. Omnipotenceˆ and Compossibility
118:5.1 The omnipotenceˆ of Deityˆ does not imply the powerˆ to do the nondoable. Within the time-space frame and from the intellectual reference point of mortalˆ comprehension, even the infinite Godˆ cannot create square circles or produce evil that is inherently good. Godˆ cannot do the ungodlike thing. Such a contradiction of philosophic terms is the equivalent of nonentity and implies that nothing is thus created. A personalityˆ trait cannot at the same time be Godlikeˆ and ungodlike. Compossibility is innate in divineˆ powerˆ. And all of this is derived from the fact that omnipotenceˆ not only creates things with a nature but also gives origin to the nature of all things and beings.
118:5.2 In the beginning the Father does all, but as the panorama of eternityˆ unfolds in response to the will and mandates of the Infinite, it becomes increasingly apparent that creatures, even men, are to become Godˆ’s partners in the realization of finality of destinyˆ. And this is true even in the life in the flesh; when man and Godˆ enter into partnership, no limitation can be placed upon the future possibilities of such a partnership. When man realizes that the Universal Fatherˆ is his partner in eternalˆ progression, when he fuses with the indwellˆing Father presence, he has, in spiritˆ, broken the fetters of time and has already entered upon the progressions of eternityˆ in the quest for the Universal Fatherˆ.
118:5.3 Mortalˆ consciousness proceeds from the fact, to the meaning, and then to the value. Creatorˆ consciousness proceeds from the thought-value, through the word-meaning, to the fact of action. Always must Godˆ act to break the deadlock of the unqualified unityˆ inherent in existentialˆ infinity. Always must Deityˆ provide the patternˆ universeˆ, the perfectˆ personalities, the original truth, beauty, and goodness for which all subdeity creations strive. Always must Godˆ first find man that man may later find Godˆ. Always must there be a Universal Fatherˆ before there can ever be universal sonshipˆ and consequent universal brotherhood.
6. Omnipotenceˆ and Omnificence
118:6.1 Godˆ is truly omnipotentˆ, but he is not omnificentˆ — he does not personally do all that is done. Omnipotenceˆ embraces the powerˆ-potential of the Almightyˆ Supremeˆˆ and the Supremeˆ Beingˆ, but the volitionalˆ acts of Godˆ the Supremeˆˆ are not the personal doings of Godˆ the Infinite.
118:6.2 To advocate the omnificence of primal Deityˆ would be equal to disenfranchising well-nigh a million Creatorˆ Sonsˆ of Paradiseˆ, not to mention the innumerable hosts of various other orders of concurring creative assistants. There is but one uncaused Cause in the whole universeˆ. All other causes are derivatives of this one First Great Source and Center. And none of this philosophy does any violence to the free-willness of the myriads of the children of Deityˆ scattered through a vast universeˆ.
118:6.3 Within a local frame, volition may appear to function as an uncaused cause, but it unfailingly exhibits inheritance factors which establish relationship with the unique, original, and absoluteˆ First Causes.
118:6.4 All volition is relative. In the originating sense, only the Father-I AM possesses finality of volition; in the absoluteˆ sense, only the Father, the Son, and the Spiritˆ exhibit the prerogatives of volition unconditioned by time and unlimited by spaceˆ. Mortalˆ man is endowed with free will, the powerˆ of choice, and though such choosing is not absoluteˆ, nevertheless, it is relatively final on the finiteˆ level and concerning the destinyˆ of the choosing personalityˆ.
118:6.5 Volition on any level short of the absoluteˆ encounters limitations which are constitutive in the very personalityˆ exercising the powerˆ of choice. Man cannot choose beyond the range of that which is choosable. He cannot, for instance, choose to be other than a human being except that he can elect to become more than a man; he can choose to embark upon the voyage of universeˆ ascensionˆ, but this is because the human choice and the divineˆ will happen to be coincident upon this point. And what a son desires and the Father wills will certainly come to pass.
118:6.6 In the mortalˆ life, paths of differential conduct are continually opening and closing, and during the times when choice is possible the human personalityˆ is constantly deciding between these many courses of action. Temporal volition is linked to time, and it must await the passing of time to find opportunity for expression. Spiritˆual volition has begun to taste liberation from the fetters of time, having achieved partial escape from time sequence, and that is because spiritˆual volition is self-identifying with the will of Godˆ.
118:6.7 Volition, the act of choosing, must function within the universeˆ frame which has actualˆized in response to higher and prior choosing. The entire range of human will is strictly finiteˆ-limited except in one particular: When man chooses to find Godˆ and to be like him, such a choice is superfiniteˆ; only eternityˆ can disclose whether this choice is also superabsonite.
118:6.8 To recognize Deityˆ omnipotenceˆ is to enjoy security in your experience of cosmic citizenship, to possess assurance of safety in the long journey to Paradiseˆ. But to accept the fallacy of omnificence is to embrace the colossal errorˆ of pantheismˆ.
7. Omniscienceˆ and Predestination
118:7.1 The function of Creatorˆ will and creature will, in the grand universeˆˆ, operates within the limits, and in accordance with the possibilities, established by the Master Architects. This foreordination of these maximum limits does not, however, in the least abridge the sovereignty of creature will within these boundaries. Neither does ultimateˆ foreknowledge — full allowance for all finiteˆ choice — constitute an abrogation of finiteˆ volition. A mature and farseeing human being might be able to forecast the decision of some younger associate most accurately, but this foreknowledge takes nothing away from the freedom and genuineness of the decision itself. The Gods have wisely limited the range of the action of immature will, but it is true will, nonetheless, within these defined limits.
118:7.2 Even the supremeˆ correlation of all past, present, and future choice does not invalidate the authenticity of such choosings. It rather indicates the foreordained trend of the cosmos and suggests foreknowledge of those volitionalˆ beings who may, or may not, elect to become contributory parts of the experientialˆ actualˆization of all reality.
118:7.3 Errorˆ in finiteˆ choosing is time bound and time limited. It can exist only in time and within the evolving presence of the Supremeˆ Beingˆ. Such mistaken choosing is time possible and indicates (besides the incompleteness of the Supremeˆ) that certain range of choice with which immature creatures must be endowed in order to enjoy universeˆ progression by making freewillˆ contact with reality.
118:7.4 Sinˆ in time-conditioned spaceˆ clearly proves the temporal liberty — even license — of the finiteˆ will. Sinˆ depicts immaturity dazzled by the freedom of the relatively sovereign will of personalityˆ while failing to perceive the supremeˆ obligations and duties of cosmic citizenship.
118:7.5 Iniquityˆ in the finiteˆ domains reveals the transient reality of all God-unidentifiedˆ selfhood. Only as a creature becomes Godˆ identified, does he become truly real in the universesˆ. Finiteˆ personalityˆ is not self-created, but in the superuniverseˆ arena of choice it does self-determine destinyˆ.
118:7.6 The bestowalˆ of life renders material-energy systems capable of self-perpetuation, self-propagation, and self-adaptation. The bestowalˆ of personalityˆ imparts to living organisms the further prerogatives of self-determination, self-evolution, and self-identification with a fusionˆ spiritˆ of Deityˆ.
118:7.7 Subpersonalˆ living things indicate mindˆ activating energyˆ-matter, first as physical controllers, and then as adjutant mind-spiritsˆ. Personalityˆ endowment comes from the Father and imparts unique prerogatives of choice to the living system. But if personalityˆ has the prerogative of exercising volitionalˆ choice of reality identification, and if this is a true and free choice, then must evolving personalityˆ also have the possible choice of becoming self-confusing, self-disrupting, and self-destroying. The possibility of cosmic self-destruction cannot be avoided if the evolving personalityˆ is to be truly free in the exercise of finiteˆ will.
118:7.8 Therefore is there increased safety in narrowing the limits of personalityˆ choice throughout the lower levels of existence. Choice becomes increasingly liberated as the universesˆ are ascended; choice eventually approximates divineˆ freedom when the ascendingˆ personalityˆ achieves divinityˆ of status, supremacyˆ of consecration to the purposes of the universeˆ, completion of cosmic-wisdom attainment, and finality of creature identification with the will and the way of Godˆ.
8. Control and Overcontrol
118:8.1 In the time-space creations, free will is hedged about with restraints, with limitations. Material-life evolution is first mechanical, then mindˆ activated, and (after the bestowalˆ of personalityˆ) it may become spiritˆ directed. Organic evolution on the inhabited worlds is physically limited by the potentials of the original physical-life implantations of the Life Carriersˆ.
118:8.2 Mortalˆ man is a machine, a living mechanism; his roots are truly in the physical world of energyˆ. Many human reactions are mechanical in nature; much of life is machinelike. But man, a mechanism, is much more than a machine; he is mindˆ endowed and spiritˆ indwelt; and though he can never throughout his material life escape the chemical and electrical mechanics of his existence, he can increasingly learn how to subordinate this physical-life machine to the directive wisdom of experience by the process of consecrating the human mindˆ to the execution of the spiritˆual urges of the indwellˆing Thought Adjusterˆˆ.
118:8.3 The spiritˆ liberates, and the mechanism limits, the function of will. Imperfect choice, uncontrolled by mechanism, unidentified with spiritˆ, is dangerous and unstable. Mechanical dominance insures stability at the expense of progress; spiritˆ alliance liberates choice from the physical level and at the same time assures the divineˆ stability produced by augmented universeˆ insight and increased cosmic comprehension.
118:8.4 The great danger that besets the creature is that, in achieving liberation from the fetters of the life mechanism, he will fail to compensate this loss of stability by effecting a harmonious working liaison with spiritˆ. Creature choice, when relatively liberated from mechanical stability, may attempt further self-liberation independent of greater spiritˆ identification.
118:8.5 The whole principle of biologic evolution makes it impossible for primitive man to appear on the inhabited worlds with any large endowment of self-restraint. Therefore does the same creative design which purposed evolution likewise provide those external restraints of time and spaceˆ, hunger and fear, which effectively circumscribe the subspiritual choice range of such uncultured creatures. As man’s mindˆ successfully overstrides increasingly difficult barriers, this same creative design has also provided for the slow accumulation of the racial heritage of painfully garnered experientialˆ wisdom — in other words, for the maintenance of a balance between the diminishing external restraints and the augmenting internal restraints.
118:8.6 The slowness of evolution, of human cultural progress, testifies to the effectiveness of that brake — material inertia — which so efficiently operates to retard dangerous velocities of progress. Thus does time itself cushion and distribute the otherwise lethal results of premature escape from the next-encompassing barriers to human action. For when culture advances overfast, when material achievement outruns the evolution of worship-wisdom, then does civilization contain within itself the seeds of retrogression; and unless buttressed by the swift augmentation of experientialˆ wisdom, such human societies will recede from high but premature levels of attainment, and the “dark ages” of the interregnum of wisdom will bear witness to the inexorable restoration of the imbalance between self-liberty and self-control.
118:8.7 The iniquityˆ of Caligastiaˆ was the by-passing of the time governor of progressive human liberation — the gratuitous destruction of restraining barriers, barriers which the mortalˆ minds of those times had not experientiallˆy overridden.
118:8.8 That mindˆ which can effect a partial abridgmentˆ of time and spaceˆ, by this very act proves itself possessed of the seeds of wisdom which can effectively serve in lieu of the transcended barrier of restraint.
118:8.9 Luciferˆ similarly sought to disrupt the time governor operating in restraint of the premature attainment of certain liberties in the local systemˆ. A local systemˆ settled in light and lifeˆ has experientiallˆy achieved those viewpoints and insights which make feasible the operation of many techniques that would be disruptive and destructive in the presettled eras of that very realm.
118:8.10 As man shakes off the shackles of fear, as he bridges continents and oceans with his machines, generations and centuries with his records, he must substitute for each transcended restraint a new and voluntarily assumed restraint in accordance with the moralˆ dictates of expanding human wisdom. These self-imposed restraints are at once the most powerful and the most tenuous of all the factors of human civilization — concepts of justice and ideals of brotherhood. Man even qualifies himself for the restraining garments of mercy when he dares to love his fellow men, while he achieves the beginnings of spiritˆual brotherhood when he elects to mete out to them that treatment which he himself would be accorded, even that treatment which he conceives that Godˆ would accord them.
118:8.11 An automatic universeˆ reaction is stable and, in some form, continuing in the cosmos. A personalityˆ who knows Godˆ and desires to do his will, who has spiritˆ insight, is divinelˆy stable and eternallˆy existent. Man’s great universeˆ adventure consists in the transit of his mortalˆ mindˆ from the stability of mechanical statics to the divinityˆ of spiritˆual dynamics, and he achieves this transformation by the forceˆ and constancy of his own personalityˆ decisions, in each of life’s situations declaring, “It is my will that your will be done.”
9. Universeˆ Mechanisms
118:9.1 Time and spaceˆ are a conjoined mechanism of the master universeˆˆ. They are the devices whereby finiteˆ creatures are enabled to coexist in the cosmos with the Infinite. Finiteˆ creatures are effectively insulated from the absoluteˆ levels by time and spaceˆ. But these insulating media, without which no mortalˆ could exist, operate directly to limit the range of finiteˆ action. Without them no creature could act, but by them the acts of every creature are definitely limited.
118:9.2 Mechanisms produced by higher minds function to liberate their creative sources but to some degree unvaryingly limit the action of all subordinate intelligences. To the creatures of the universesˆ this limitation becomes apparent as the mechanism of the universesˆ. Man does not have unfettered free will; there are limits to his range of choice, but within the radius of this choice his will is relatively sovereign.
118:9.3 The life mechanism of the mortalˆ personalityˆ, the human body, is the product of supermortalˆ creative design; therefore it can never be perfectlˆy controlled by man himself. Only when ascendingˆ man, in liaison with the fused Adjusterˆ, self-creates the mechanism for personalityˆ expression, will he achieve perfected control thereof.
118:9.4 The grand universeˆˆ is mechanism as well as organism, mechanical and living — a living mechanism activated by a Supremeˆ Mindˆ, co-ordinating with a Supremeˆ Spiritˆ, and finding expression on maximum levels of powerˆ and personalityˆ unification as the Supremeˆ Beingˆ. But to deny the mechanism of the finiteˆ creation is to deny fact and to disregard reality.
118:9.5 Mechanisms are the products of mindˆ, creative mindˆ acting on and in cosmic potentials. Mechanisms are the fixed crystallizations of Creatorˆ thought, and they ever function true to the volitionalˆ concept that gave them origin. But the purposiveness of any mechanism is in its origin, not in its function.
118:9.6 These mechanisms should not be thought of as limiting the action of Deityˆ; rather is it true that in these very mechanics Deityˆ has achieved one phase of eternalˆ expression. The basic universeˆ mechanisms have come into existence in response to the absoluteˆ will of the First Source and Centerˆ, and they will therefore eternallˆy function in perfectˆ harmony with the plan of the Infinite; they are, indeed, the nonvolitional patternsˆ of that very plan.
118:9.7 We understand something of how the mechanism of Paradiseˆ is correlated with the personalityˆ of the Eternalˆ Sonˆ; this is the function of the Conjoint Actorˆ. And we have theories regarding the operations of the Universal Absoluteˆˆ with respect to the theoretical mechanisms of the Unqualified and the potential person of the Deityˆ Absoluteˆˆ. But in the evolving Deities of Supremeˆ and Ultimateˆ we observe that certain impersonal phases are being actuallˆy united with their volitionalˆ counterparts, and thus there is evolving a new relationship between patternˆ and person.
118:9.8 In the eternityˆ of the past the Father and the Son found union in the unity of the expression of the Infinite Spiritˆˆ. If, in the eternityˆ of the future, the Creatorˆ Sonsˆ and the Creative Spiritsˆ of the local universesˆ of time and spaceˆ should attain creative union in the realms of outer spaceˆˆ, what would their unity create as the combined expression of their divineˆ natures? It may well be that we are to witness a hitherto unrevealed manifestation of Ultimateˆ Deityˆ, a new type of superadministrator. Such beings would embrace unique prerogatives of personalityˆ, being the union of personal Creatorˆ, impersonal Creative Spiritˆˆ, mortalˆ-creature experience, and progressive personalization of the Divineˆ Minister. Such beings could be ultimateˆ in that they would embrace personal and impersonal reality, while they would combine the experiences of Creatorˆ and creature. Whatever the attributes of such third persons of these postulated functioning trinities of the creations of outer spaceˆˆ, they will sustain something of the same relation to their Creatorˆ Fathers and their Creative Mothers that the Infinite Spiritˆˆ does to the Universal Fatherˆ and the Eternalˆ Sonˆ.
118:9.9 Godˆ the Supremeˆˆ is the personalization of all universeˆ experience, the focalization of all finiteˆ evolution, the maximation of all creature reality, the consummation of cosmic wisdom, the embodiment of the harmonious beauties of the galaxies of time, the truth of cosmic mindˆ meanings, and the goodness of supremeˆ spiritˆ values. And Godˆ the Supremeˆˆ will, in the eternalˆ future, synthesize these manifold finiteˆ diversities into one experientiallˆy meaningful whole, even as they are now existentiallˆy united on absoluteˆ levels in the Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ.
10. Functions of Providenceˆ
118:10.1 Providenceˆ does not mean that Godˆ has decided all things for us and in advance. Godˆ loves us too much to do that, for that would be nothing short of cosmic tyranny. Man does have relative powersˆ of choice. Neither is the divineˆ love that shortsighted affection which would pamper and spoil the children of men.
118:10.2 The Father, Son, and Spiritˆ — as the Trinityˆ — are not the Almightyˆ Supremeˆˆ, but the supremacyˆ of the Almightyˆ can never be manifest without them. The growth of the Almightyˆ is centered on the Absolutesˆ of actualˆity and predicated on the Absolutesˆ of potentialityˆˆ. But the functions of the Almightyˆ Supremeˆˆ are related to the functions of the Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ.
118:10.3 It would appear that, in the Supremeˆ Beingˆ, all phases of universeˆ activity are being partially reunited by the personalityˆ of this experientialˆ Deityˆ. When, therefore, we desire to view the Trinityˆ as one Godˆ, and if we limit this concept to the present known and organized grand universeˆˆ, we discover that the evolving Supremeˆ Beingˆ is the partial portraiture of the Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ. And we further find that this Supremeˆ Deityˆ is evolving as the personalityˆ synthesisˆ of finiteˆ matter, mindˆ, and spiritˆ in the grand universeˆˆ.
118:10.4 The Gods have attributes but the Trinityˆ has functions, and like the Trinityˆ, providenceˆ is a function, the composite of the other-than-personal overcontrol of the universeˆ of universesˆ, extending from the evolutionaryˆ levels of the Sevenfoldˆ synthesizing in the powerˆ of the Almightyˆ on up through the transcendentalˆ realms of the Ultimacyˆ of Deityˆ.
118:10.5 Godˆ loves each creature as a child, and that love overshadows each creature throughout all time and eternityˆ. Providenceˆ functions with regard to the total and deals with the function of any creature as such function is related to the total. Providential intervention with regard to any being is indicative of the importance of the function of that being as concerns the evolutionaryˆ growth of some total; such total may be the total race, the total nation, the total planet, or even a higher total. It is the importance of the function of the creature that occasions providential intervention, not the importance of the creature as a person.
118:10.6 Nevertheless, the Father as a person may at any time interpose a fatherly hand in the stream of cosmic events all in accordance with the will of Godˆ and in consonance with the wisdom of Godˆ and as motivated by the love of Godˆ.
118:10.7 But what man calls providenceˆ is all too often the product of his own imagination, the fortuitous juxtaposition of the circumstances of chance. There is, however, a real and emerging providenceˆ in the finiteˆ realm of universeˆ existence, a true and actualˆizing correlation of the energies of spaceˆ, the motions of time, the thoughts of intellect, the ideals of character, the desires of spiritˆual natures, and the purposive volitionalˆ acts of evolving personalities. The circumstances of the material realms find final finiteˆ integration in the interlocking presences of the Supremeˆ and the Ultimateˆ.
118:10.8 As the mechanisms of the grand universeˆˆ are perfected to a point of final precision through the overcontrol of mindˆ, and as creature mindˆ ascends to the perfectˆion of divinityˆ attainment through perfected integration with spiritˆ, and as the Supremeˆ consequently emerges as an actualˆ unifier of all these universeˆ phenomena, so does providenceˆ become increasingly discernible.
118:10.9 Some of the amazingly fortuitous conditions occasionally prevailing on the evolutionaryˆ worlds may be due to the gradually emerging presence of the Supremeˆ, the foretasting of his future universeˆ activities. Most of what a mortalˆ would call providential is not; his judgment of such matters is very handicapped by lack of farsighted vision into the true meanings of the circumstances of life. Much of what a mortalˆ would call good luck might really be bad luck; the smile of fortuneˆ that bestows unearned leisure and undeserved wealth may be the greatest of human afflictions; the apparent cruelty of a perverse fate that heaps tribulation upon some suffering mortalˆ may in reality be the tempering fire that is transmuting the soft iron of immature personalityˆ into the tempered steel of real character.
118:10.10 There is a providenceˆ in the evolving universesˆ, and it can be discovered by creatures to just the extent that they have attained capacity to perceive the purpose of the evolving universesˆ. Complete capacity to discern universeˆ purposes equals the evolutionaryˆ completion of the creature and may otherwise be expressed as the attainment of the Supremeˆ within the limits of the present state of the incomplete universesˆ.
118:10.11 The love of the Father operates directly in the heart of the individual, independent of the actions or reactions of all other individuals; the relationship is personal — man and Godˆ. The impersonal presence of Deityˆ ( Almightyˆ Supremeˆˆ and Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ) manifests regard for the whole, not for the part. The providenceˆ of the overcontrol of Supremacyˆ becomes increasingly apparent as the successive parts of the universeˆ progress in the attainment of finiteˆ destinies. As the systems, constellationsˆ, universesˆ, and superuniversesˆ become settled in light and lifeˆ, the Supremeˆ increasingly emerges as the meaningful correlator of all that is transpiring, while the Ultimateˆ gradually emerges as the transcendentalˆ unifier of all things.
118:10.12 In the beginnings on an evolutionaryˆ world the natural occurrences of the material order and the personal desires of human beings often appear to be antagonistic. Much that takes place on an evolving world is rather hard for mortalˆ man to understand — natural law is so often apparently cruel, heartless, and indifferent to all that is true, beautiful, and good in human comprehension. But as humanity progresses in planetary development, we observe that this viewpoint is modified by the following factors:
118:10.13 1. Man’s augmenting vision — his increased understanding of the world in which he lives; his enlarging capacity for the comprehension of the material facts of time, the meaningful ideas of thought, and the valuable ideals of spiritˆual insight. As long as men measure only by the yardstick of the things of a physical nature, they can never hope to find unity in time and spaceˆ.
118:10.14 2. Man’s increasing control — the gradual accumulation of the knowledge of the laws of the material world, the purposes of spiritˆual existence, and the possibilities of the philosophic co-ordination of these two realities. Man, the savage, was helpless before the onslaughts of natural forcesˆ, was slavish before the cruel mastery of his own inner fears. Semicivilized man is beginning to unlock the storehouse of the secrets of the natural realms, and his science is slowly but effectively destroying his superstitions while at the same time providing a new and enlarged factual basis for the comprehension of the meanings of philosophy and the values of true spiritˆual experience. Man, the civilized, will someday achieve relative mastery of the physical forcesˆ of his planet; the love of Godˆ in his heart will be effectively outpoured as love for his fellow men, while the values of human existence will be nearing the limits of mortalˆ capacity.
118:10.15 3. Man’s universeˆ integration — the increase of human insight plus the increase of human experientialˆ achievement brings him into closer harmony with the unifying presences of Supremacyˆ — Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ and Supremeˆ Beingˆ. And this is what establishes the sovereignty of the Supremeˆ on the worlds long settled in light and lifeˆ. Such advanced planets are indeed poems of harmony, pictures of the beauty of achieved goodness attained through the pursuit of cosmic truth. And if such things can happen to a planet, then even greater things can happen to a system and the larger units of the grand universeˆˆ as they too achieve a settledness indicating the exhaustion of the potentials for finiteˆ growth.
118:10.16 On a planet of this advanced order, providenceˆ has become an actualˆity, the circumstances of life are correlated, but this is not only because man has come to dominate the material problems of his world; it is also because he has begun to live according to the trend of the universes; he is following the pathway of Supremacyˆ to the attainment of the Universal Fatherˆ.
118:10.17 The kingdom of Godˆ is in the hearts of men, and when this kingdom becomes actualˆ in the heart of every individual on a world, then Godˆ’s rule has become actualˆ on that planet; and this is the attained sovereignty of the Supremeˆ Beingˆ.
118:10.18 To realize providenceˆ in time, man must accomplish the task of achieving perfectˆion. But man can even now foretaste this providenceˆ in its eternityˆ meanings as he ponders the universeˆ fact that all things, be they good or evil, work together for the advancement of God-knowingˆ mortalsˆ in their quest for the Father of all.
118:10.19 Providenceˆ becomes increasingly discernible as men reach upward from the material to the spiritˆual. The attainment of completed spiritˆual insight enables the ascendingˆ personalityˆ to detect harmony in what was theretofore chaos. Even morontiaˆ motaˆ represents a real advance in this direction.
118:10.20 Providenceˆ is in part the overcontrol of the incomplete Supremeˆ manifested in the incomplete universesˆ, and it must therefore ever be:
118:10.21 1. Partial — due to the incompleteness of the actualˆization of the Supremeˆ Beingˆ, and
118:10.22 2. Unpredictable — due to the fluctuations in creature attitude, which ever varies from level to level, thus causing apparently variable reciprocal response in the Supremeˆ.
118:10.23 When men pray for providential intervention in the circumstances of life, many times the answer to their prayer is their own changed attitudes toward life. But providenceˆ is not whimsical, neither is it fantastic nor magical. It is the slow and sure emergence of the mighty sovereign of the finiteˆ universesˆ, whose majestic presence the evolving creatures occasionally detect in their universeˆ progressions. Providenceˆ is the sure and certain march of the galaxies of spaceˆ and the personalities of time toward the goals of eternityˆ, first in the Supremeˆ, then in the Ultimateˆ, and perhaps in the Absoluteˆ. And in infinity we believe there is the same providenceˆ, and this is the will, the actions, the purpose of the Paradiseˆ Trinityˆ thus motivating the cosmic panorama of universesˆ upon universesˆ.
118:10.24 [Sponsored by a Mighty Messengerˆ temporarily sojourning on Urantiaˆ.]