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for October 2009

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#676
11-4-2009
#677
11-11-2009
#678
11-18-2009
#679
11-25-2009

10-4-2009 Sunday Service of the Church Within #676
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Weekly On-Line Services Since September 29, 1996

Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel J. Megow

Please Freely Share any of our Church Within Services with Any and All whom you feel might Appreciate them. If you have received this Service from a friend and would like to subscribe to our Weekly On-Line Services, send an e-mail with your request to: seewithin@churchwithin.org Thank You! ...and Please Visit our Church Within Web-Site at http://www.churchwithin.org

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Humor of the Week
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If you are old enough, there is nothing left to learn the hard way. (Gotta be really, really old.)

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Welcome by: Pastor Daniel
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Greetings my Beloved Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to the Church that is Within.

When I read the first of today's Urantia Book quotes yesterday, it inspired today's topic…

The topic of today's Sunday Service, #676, is Virtue…

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Quotes
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(From: Cicero (106 BC - 43 BC)

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-16 Section-7)
To name virtues is not to define them, but to live them is to know them. Virtue is not mere knowledge nor yet wisdom but rather the reality of progressive experience in the attainment of ascending levels of cosmic achievement. In the day-by-day life of mortal man, virtue is realized by the consistent choosing of good rather than evil, and such choosing ability is evidence of the possession of a moral nature.

(From: David Starr Jordan (1851 - 1931), The Philosophy of Despair)
Wisdom is knowing what to do next; virtue is doing it.

(From: The RSV Bible - Peter II 1:5-7)
For this very reason make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love.

(From: Confucius (551 BC - 479 BC), The Confucian Analects)
Virtue is not left to stand alone. He who practices it will have neighbors.

(From: Voltaire (1694 - 1778)
Men are equal; it is not birth but virtue that makes the difference.

(From: The Tao Te Ching - #10)
Giving birth and nourishing,
having without possessing,
acting with no expectations,
leading and not trying to control:
this is the supreme virtue.

(From: Aristotle (384 BC - 322 BC)
Of all the varieties of virtues, liberalism is the most beloved.

(From: Cato the Elder (234 BC - 149 BC)
I think the first virtue is to restrain the tongue; he approaches nearest to gods who knows how to be silent, even though he is in the right.

(From: Saint Thomas Aquinas (1225 - 1274)
Perfection of moral virtue does not wholly take away the passions, but regulates them.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-16 Section-7)
        Man's choosing between good and evil is influenced, not only by the keenness of his moral nature, but also by such influences as ignorance, immaturity, and delusion. A sense of proportion is also concerned in the exercise of virtue because evil may be perpetrated when the lesser is chosen in the place of the greater as a result of distortion or deception.

(From: Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790)
Whoever feels pain in hearing a good character of his neighbor, will feel a pleasure in the reverse. And those who despair to rise in distinction by their virtues, are happy if others can be depressed to a level of themselves.

(From: George Washington (1732 - 1799)
Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder.

(From: Dante Alighieri (1265 - 1321), The Divine Comedy)
Consider your origin; you were not born to live like brutes, but to follow virtue and knowledge.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-131 Section-3)
Evil is degrading, whether held in thought or wrought out in deeds. Pain and sorrow follow in the path of evil as the dust follows the wind. Happiness and peace of mind follow pure thinking and virtuous living as the shadow follows the substance of material things. Evil is the fruit of wrongly directed thinking. It is evil to see sin where there is no sin; to see no sin where there is sin. Evil is the path of false doctrines. Those who avoid evil by seeing things as they are gain joy by thus embracing the truth.

(From: C. S. Lewis (1898 - 1963)
Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.

(From: Aristotle (384 BC - 322 BC)
All virtue is summed up in dealing justly.

(From: Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)
We should every night call ourselves to an account; What infirmity have I mastered today? What passions opposed? What temptation resisted? What virtue acquired?

(From: Nagarjuna)
Virtues are acquired through endeavor,
Which rests wholly upon yourself.
So, to praise others for their virtues
Can but encourage one's own efforts.


(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-48 Section-7)
You have not truly acquired any virtue until your acts make you worthy of it.

(From: Aristotle (384 BC - 322 BC)
The greatest virtues are those which are most useful to other persons.

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The Sermon
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One cannot buy Virtue.
One cannot steal Virtue.
One cannot deprive another of the Virtues they possess.

Virtue can be desired, earned and attained (and it pretty much happens in that order).
But Virtue can also be denied, rejected and discarded (order is not applicable).

Virtue flaunted isn't really Virtue but rather imitation.
Virtue isn't displayed, it is practiced… it is shared.

A Virtue unrecognized is a Virtue unattained.
A Virtue disavowed is a Virtue unwanted.
A Virtue disdained is a Virtue abandoned.

Acknowledge a Virtue enough and it will be yours eventually.
Crave a Virtue enough and it will be yours a lot sooner.
Share a Virtue enough and it will be yours a lot longer.
Value a Virtue enough and it will become a part of you.

Virtue… ya' gotta' Know it to fully Appreciate it.
Virtue. To know it is to Love it.

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The Prayer
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Dear God,
        Help me to know more Virtue.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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10-11-2009 Sunday Service of the Church Within #677
****************************************************************************
Weekly On-Line Services Since September 29, 1996

Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel J. Megow

Please Freely Share any of our Church Within Services with Any and All whom you feel might Appreciate them. If you have received this Service from a friend and would like to subscribe to our Weekly On-Line Services, send an e-mail with your request to: seewithin@churchwithin.org Thank You! ...and Please Visit our Church Within Web-Site at http://www.churchwithin.org

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Humor of the Week
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It's possible to disagree with someone about the ethics of non-violence without wanting to kick his face in.
(Christopher Hampton, Treats (1976), Scene IV)

[ed: usually it is possible. ;-)]

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Welcome by: Pastor Daniel
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Greetings my Beloved Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to the Church that is Within.

What is the difference between a journalistic reporter and a journalistic entertainer? Some have it and some don't… the ones who do should be embraced and the ones who do not should be ignored. What the heck am I talking about?

The topic of today's Sunday Service, #677, is Ethics…

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The Sermon
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(The definition of ethics from: wordnetweb.princeton.edu)
the philosophical study of moral values and rules; ethical motive: motivation based on ideas of right and wrong.


Remember when there was an apparently strong “Code of Ethics” in Journalism or aren't you old enough? But there are still some journalists who are exceptions to the prevailing rule of course.

Supposedly there was a “Code of Ethics” also in the Law profession, but I don't think that I am even old enough to remember that. [Seriously though… I know some excellent individual exceptions to that generalization as well ;-)]

I wonder if Politicians as a whole have ever considered adopting a “Code of Ethics”? Probably not, but there have truly been, and are, a few notable individuals who have embraced one… they call them Statesmen and most are remembered fondly for generations.

Now the Medical profession seems to have a strong and almost universally embraced “Code of Ethics” though exceptions can be found here as well. This highly ethical and accepted Code of course is in reference to most individual doctors, nurses, therapists, health and mental health professionals and for the most part apparently excludes corporations like pharmaceutical and health insurance companies that are more about profit than actually about health.

You would think that an Organized Religion would have very high ethical standards and truly some Do. But alas, some indeed do not, and for some others, the circle of ethical treatment does not extend past their own dogmatic, doctrinal boundaries (doesn't apply to outsiders).

They used to teach ethics in school… do they still? I don't remember seeing it as a course option when my son went to high school.

Ethics is something we still Care about, isn't it? It should be, Right?

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Quotes
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(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-28 Section-6)
Progress is made possible by inherent motion, advancement grows out of the divine capacity for action, and achievement is the child of imaginative adventure. But inherent in this capacity for achievement is the responsibility of ethics, the necessity for recognizing that the world and the universe are filled with a multitude of differing types of beings. All of this magnificent creation, including yourself, was not made just for you. This is not an egocentric universe. The Gods have decreed, "It is more blessed to give than to receive," and said your Master Son, "He who would be greatest among you let him be server of all."

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-52 Section-6)
Only ethical consciousness can unmask the immorality of human intolerance and the sinfulness of fratricidal strife. Only a moral conscience can condemn the evils of national envy and racial jealousy. Only moral beings will ever seek for that spiritual insight which is essential to living the golden rule.

(From: Aldo Leopold)
Examine each question in terms of what is ethically and aesthetically right, as well as what is economically expedient. A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-5 Section-5)
Man's physical environment entails the battle for existence; the social surroundings necessitate ethical adjustments; the moral situations require the making of choices in the highest realms of reason; the spiritual experience (having realized God) demands that man find him and sincerely strive to be like him.

(From: Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)
Ethical axioms are found and tested not very differently from the axioms of science. Truth is what stands the test of experience.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-12 Section-5)
Ethics and morals become truly human when they are dynamic and progressive, alive with universe reality.

(From: Jane Addams (1860 - 1935)
Action indeed is the sole medium of expression for ethics.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-27 Section-3)
Ethical awareness is simply the recognition by any individual of the rights inherent in the existence of any and all other individuals.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-170 Section-3)
To thus love your neighbor as yourself is the highest ethics.

(From: Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970)
Change is scientific, progress is ethical; change is indubitable, whereas progress is a matter of controversy.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-92 Section-7)
        Primitive religion was largely a material-value consciousness, but civilization elevates religious values, for true religion is the devotion of the self to the service of meaningful and supreme values. As religion evolves, ethics becomes the philosophy of morals, and morality becomes the discipline of self by the standards of highest meanings and supreme values--divine and spiritual ideals. And thus religion becomes a spontaneous and exquisite devotion, the living experience of the loyalty of love.

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The Prayer
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Dear God,
        Could you do me a favor and reach into people's souls and plant the desire for more ethical behavior? “….” Oh, You always Do? What's the matter with people, don't they Listen to You? “….” Well Sure, I Try to, but… OK, yeah, I get Your point.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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10-18-2009 Sunday Service of the Church Within #678
****************************************************************************
Weekly On-Line Services Since September 29, 1996

Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel J. Megow

Please Freely Share any of our Church Within Services with Any and All whom you feel might Appreciate them. If you have received this Service from a friend and would like to subscribe to our Weekly On-Line Services, send an e-mail with your request to: seewithin@churchwithin.org Thank You! ...and Please Visit our Church Within Web-Site at http://www.churchwithin.org

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Humor of the Week
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When I'm inspired, I get excited because I can't wait to see what I'll come up with next.
(Dolly Parton)

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Welcome by: Pastor Daniel
************************
Greetings my Beloved Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to the Church that is Within.

It touches all of us from time to time… seldom as often as we might wish and usually in more ways than we are capable of recognizing it in any given moment…

The topic of today's Sunday Service, #678, is Inspiration…

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Quotes
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(From: Edward Bulwer-Lytton (1803 - 1873)
The best teacher is the one who suggests rather than dogmatizes, and inspires his listener with the wish to teach himself.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-100 Section-1)
        Children are permanently impressed only by the loyalties of their adult associates; precept or even example is not lastingly influential. Loyal persons are growing persons, and growth is an impressive and inspiring reality. Live loyally today--grow--and tomorrow will attend to itself. The quickest way for a tadpole to become a frog is to live loyally each moment as a tadpole.

(From: Solonia 5/2/04 – the Faith Garden TeaM)
        Listen with all your Soul. Listen with all your Heart. Listen with all your Being. for the Word of God. And if indeed what you hear reflects Truth, Beauty, Goodness and Love, then Indeed it Is of the Father. Seek God's Word in the pages of material revelation. Seek God's Word in All things. But most especially, seek the Word of God in your own Heart and in your own personal experience. For There is where your personal relationship may grow and prosper and be the inspiration for more and greater fruits.

(From: Will 5/24/92 – the Tallahassee, FL TeaM)
Let your life be a reflection of the understanding of the Father. He is freely available to you. He is always on duty. He has done all that He can at the moment to reveal Himself to you. Most of Himself which He has so far revealed has been disregarded. He is not fully appreciated by any person alive on this planet, in this day. Yet He has not abandoned you; far from it. He waits for you to contact Him. We recommend that you take the time to do so, first on a regular basis and, second, whenever you feel the need for a true friend, for pure, honest guidance and for the inspiration of your eternal souls. It is astonishing to us that you do not take more advantage of this gift, yet it remains yours to freely embrace whenever you so choose.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-156 Section-5)
Believers must increasingly learn how to step aside from the rush of life--escape the harassments of material existence--while they refresh the soul, inspire the mind, and renew the spirit by worshipful communion.

(From: Hugh Macleod, How To Be Creative: 24, 08-22-04)
You have to find a way of working that makes it dead easy to take full advantage of your inspired moments. They never hit at a convenient time, nor do they last long.

(From: Jack London (1876 - 1916)
You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.

(From: Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955), 'Out of My Later Years,' 1950)
Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.

(From: CBS “NUMB3RS” 10-16-09- Character Larry played by Peter McNichols)
…you will never be happy in a job that fails to inspire.

(From: The RSV Bible - Corinthians I 12:4-11)
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of working, but it is the same God who inspires them all in every one. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are inspired by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.

(From: George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950), Pygmalion, Act 2)
What is life but a series of inspired follies? The difficulty is to find them to do. Never lose a chance: it doesn't come every day.

(From: Israel Zangwill)
The past is for inspiration, not imitation, for continuation, not repetition.

(From: Socrates (469 BC - 399 BC), In "Apology," sct. 21, by Plato)
I decided that it was not wisdom that enabled [poets] to write their poetry, but a kind of instinct or inspiration, such as you find in seers and prophets who deliver all their sublime messages without knowing in the least what they mean.

(From: Adele Brookman)
Use your imagination not to scare yourself to death but to inspire yourself to life.

(From: Robert Louis Stevenson (1850 - 1894)
Keep your fears to yourself, but share your inspiration with others.

(From: Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 - 1882)
The glory of friendship is not the outstreched hand, nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him and is willing to trust him.

(From: Robert Anthony)
Everything I see in this existence tells me that we were created by the hand of a teacher. One that has left behind all the materials needed to inspire and complete our education.

(From: William A. Ward)
The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.

(From: King Whitney Jr.)
Change has a considerable psychological impact on the human mind. To the fearful it is threatening because it means that things may get worse. To the hopeful it is encouraging because things may get better. To the confident it is inspiring because the challenge exists to make things better.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-130 Section-6)
But most valuable of all, your potential of real achievement is the spirit which lives within you, and which will stimulate and inspire your mind to control itself and activate the body if you will release it from the fetters of fear and thus enable your spiritual nature to begin your deliverance from the evils of inaction by the power-presence of living faith. And then, forthwith, will this faith vanquish fear of men by the compelling presence of that new and all-dominating love of your fellows which will so soon fill your soul to overflowing because of the consciousness which has been born in your heart that you are a child of God.

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The Sermon
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Everyone needs a little Inspiration in life, don't you think? Or perhaps it is more than a little that is needed, maybe even a steady Fountain of Inspiration.

Of course there are many different types of Inspiration and indeed an almost limitless number of sources for Inspiration. Places can Inspire, people can Inspire, art and music are fairly reliable sources of Inspiration. What Inspires me may not Inspire you, but sometimes it may. What Inspires you may not Inspire me… or it may be just the Inspiration that I need at the moment. Different things Inspire different reactions in different people at different times and in different circumstances.

Some things Inspire Awe, others Creativity. Some Inspire one to Action, some to Reflection. Some to Uncontrollable Excitement… and others to Peaceful Tranquility. The type of Inspiration a person receives I believe, is in direct response to the type they are truly in need of at the moment, though oftentimes it may not be the kind they may Think that they need.

People can open themselves up to Inspiration, or they can close themselves down to it… it is not always a conscious choice, but I think it can be. It isn't uncommon to be surrounded by multiple sources of potential Inspiration and yet too “busy” to see a single one of them. Could it be that we are constantly surrounded by opportunities to receive Inspiration and all we really need to do is to pay attention and embrace it?

Though there may seem to be millions of sources for Inspiration, there really is only One you know.

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The Prayer
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Dear God,
        It has become clear to me that You are the Source of all Inspiration and will use any vehicle necessary to provide it to any and all who will open their souls to receive it.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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10-25-2009 Sunday Service of the Church Within #679
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Weekly On-Line Services Since September 29, 1996

Today's Service is offered by: Pastor Daniel J. Megow

Please Freely Share any of our Church Within Services with Any and All whom you feel might Appreciate them. If you have received this Service from a friend and would like to subscribe to our Weekly On-Line Services, send an e-mail with your request to: seewithin@churchwithin.org Thank You! ...and Please Visit our Church Within Web-Site at http://www.churchwithin.org

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Humor of the Week
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The nice thing about egotists is that they don't talk about other people.
(Lucille S. Harper)

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Welcome by: Pastor Daniel
************************
Greetings my Beloved Sisters and Brothers, and welcome once again to the Church that is Within.

Everybody has one, but it has such a bad reputation that few want to admit it…

The topic of today's Sunday Service, #679, is Ego…

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Quotes
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(From: Carl Jung (1875 - 1961), The Meaning of Psychology for Modern Man)
The dream is the small hidden door in the deepest and most intimate sanctum of the soul, which opens to that primeval cosmic night that was soul long before there was conscious ego and will be soul far beyond what a conscious ego could ever reach.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-91 Section-3)
        Children, when first learning to make use of language, are prone to think out loud, to express their thoughts in words, even if no one is present to hear them. With the dawn of creative imagination they evince a tendency to converse with imaginary companions. In this way a budding ego seeks to hold communion with a fictitious alter ego. By this technique the child early learns to convert his monologue conversations into pseudo dialogues in which this alter ego makes replies to his verbal thinking and wish expression. Very much of an adult's thinking is mentally carried on in conversational form.

(From: Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, 1990)
A self that is only differentiated - not integrated - may attain great individual accomplishments, but risks being mired in self-centered egotism. By the same token, a person who's self is based exclusively on integration will be well connected and secure, but lack autonomous individuality. Only when a person invests equal amounts of psychic energy in these two processes and avoids both selfishness and conformity is the self likely to reflect complexity.

(From: Solonia - 2/7/04 – The Garden TeaM)
The pride of ego is the fear of being wrong or perceived by others as being wrong. This fear, indeed fear of any kind, must be given up. The fear that I speak of is spiritual fear and not material fear. Fear for your safety taught you wisdom, but the spiritual type of fear---fear of not being loved, fear of not being in control, fear of loving unconditionally, fear of discovering the whole Truth---these fears, it is time to put behind you, for you know truly that you are loved and cherished first and foremost by Our Heavenly Father

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-48 Section-6)
When you feel important, you lose energy to the wear and tear of ego dignity so that there is little energy left to do the work. Self-importance, not work-importance, exhausts immature creatures; it is the self element that exhausts, not the effort to achieve. You can do important work if you do not become self-important; you can do several things as easily as one if you leave yourself out. Variety is restful; monotony is what wears and exhausts.

(From: Colin Powell (1937 -)
Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it.

(From: William James (1842 - 1910)
Religion is a monumental chapter in the history of human egotism.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-103 Section-1)
        While your religion is a matter of personal experience, it is most important that you should be exposed to the knowledge of a vast number of other religious experiences (the diverse interpretations of other and diverse mortals) to the end that you may prevent your religious life from becoming egocentric--circumscribed, selfish, and unsocial.

(From: John Cage (1912 - 1992)
If you develop an ear for sounds that are musical it is like developing an ego. You begin to refuse sounds that are not musical and that way cut yourself off from a good deal of experience.

(From: Helen - 4/20/97– the North Idaho TeaM)
It takes a fine tuning and practice to get to know your intuition, learn to value it and learn to love the ego but not allow it to take over. It can become like a small child; it takes discipline with love in that you have to put it in its place and go to your intuition, your crystal clear thinking

(From: Molly Wiest)
War is the biggest ego trip of all time.

(From: George Santayana (1863 - 1952)
Intolerance itself is a form of egoism, and to condemn egoism intolerantly is to share it.

(From: Will 9/13/92 – the Tallahassee TeaM)
Try not to walk through the day with your ego out front. Put your ego on hold and let God walk through you for only in walking in this way will you truly walk in peace and in harmony with not only your fellow man but with all things.

(From: Rainer Maria Rilke)
Make your ego porous. Will is of little importance, complaining is nothing, fame is nothing. Openness, patience, receptivity, solitude is everything.

(From: The Urantia Book - Paper-48 Section-4
        When we are tempted to magnify our self-importance, if we stop to contemplate the infinity of the greatness and grandeur of our Makers, our own self-glorification becomes sublimely ridiculous, even verging on the humorous. One of the functions of humor is to help all of us take ourselves less seriously. Humor is the divine antidote for exaltation of ego.

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The Sermon
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People rarely talk about a healthy ego.
But many a conversation results because of the unhealthy ego.

A healthy ego is centered in the self.
The unhealthy ego appears ever self centered.

The healthy ego strives for attaining Perfection.
An unhealthy ego strives for unwarranted attention.

Healthy ego exhibits self assurance.
Unhealthy ego displays self importance.

A healthy ego rejoices in success.
The unhealthy ego boasts and gloats whenever it wins.

The healthy ego knows that it is Loved.
An unhealthy ego doubts that it can be loved.

A child that is loved, encouraged, respected and made to feel safe has a good emotional environment for developing a healthy ego. Take away any one of those and it becomes more difficult. Take away any two and the development of a healthy ego can be a real chore. For the child who can count on none of them, it is a monumental though not impossible task.

The perfectly healthy ego is nearly unattainable in our world such as it is. The completely unhealthy ego is not nearly that rare. The vast majority of us fall somewhere between the two extremes… showing occasional traits of each. Personal Spiritual Growth promotes ego health. Strict theological adherence… not so much.

Love, Compassion, Tolerance, Forgiveness, Trust… Healthy.
fear, prejudice, hatred, revenge, suspicion… unhealthy.

Having opinions… Healthy.
Thinking that they are the only ones of any value… unhealthy

Wanting to know and understand… Healthy.
Choosing to remain ignorant… unhealthy.

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The Prayer
**********
Dear God,
        Help me to be healthy.

You ALL are Within the Infinitely Loving Embrace of our Universal Parent,

The Creator's Infinite Love to all of You,
Pastor Daniel

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