A Study of the Master Universe:
A Development of Concepts in the Urantia Book
Bill Sadler (William S. Sadler, Jr.)
- Contents of this chapter:
- 1. The Purpose of the Master Universe
- 2. The Answers to Seven Questions
- 3. Themes, Principles and Patterns
We have completed our study of the master universe. It has been a long journey in concept since we first considered the dawn of time and the beginning of the Second Universe Age. We have traced the development of the master creation from the First Creative Thesis of Perfection (Havona in relation to the imperfect superuniverses) - through the Finite Story, with the emergence of the Supreme Being and the perfecting of the superuniverses. We have explored the whole of the Absonite Story - starting with the Second Creative Thesis (the grand universe in relation to the outer space creations) and have followed it to the final emergence of the Ultimate and the completion of the vast master universe. We have twice seen the completion of the cycle of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis; we have observed the beginning, but not the ending of the third cycle. We have come a very long way and our study proper has drawn to its logical conclusion.
1. The Purpose of The Master Universe
The very first paragraph in the Introduction to this study consisted of several questions. We would do well to repeat them here:
"Actually, what is the master universe? Do we really have much of an understanding of what the Papers mean when they speak of it?
Do we have any proper understanding of how God's purposes are unfolding in the master universe? Do we have an appreciation of the purpose of the master universe, itself?"
At the conclusion of our study proper we should have arrived at some fairly valid answers to these questions - at least valid from the human perspective. We have learned something about what the master universe is, in terms of physical size; and we have estimated the duration of the universe ages, in terms of time. But, as concerns God's purposes in the master creation and the purpose (or purposes) of the master universe, itself, we have probably done very little more than scratch the surface of the whole concept.
Nevertheless, we have (rightly or wrongly) developed certain concepts about the whole master creation, the reasons for its existence, and God's purposes that are unfolding in it. Based on our study we would submit that the master creation is the arena of God's adventure into the realms of relative reality, sub-absolute reality - finite and absonite reality. In the master creation God is adventuring, and a part of his adventure is to see if he can win the allegiance of creatures such as us, and win it by the compelling power of love alone.
One who once spoke for God, said, "He who would save his life will lose it . . . " There is likely to be little merit in working out a plan for bargaining with God in terms of constructive morality, contrived ethics, good works, or "planned survival." But, to respond to the challenge of love (the challenge to partake of divine perfection) could lead us into the immediate adventure of the Paradise ascent, and thence to the eternal adventure of exploring the infinity of God and the infinity of God's love.
From eternal Paradise and Havona God projected himself, existentially, in past eternity. The master universe appears to be the base, the foundation, from which he seems to intend to project himself, experientially, in future eternity.
From a creature's viewpoint, the master universe is our larger home. It is the place where we are born, grow, decide, ascend, find God, complete finite destiny, and go on to absonite levels of growth and achievement. When we have attained the fullness of absonite destiny we will probably have "come of age." Then we will likely be mature citizens of the master creation. We will have attained a status which should qualify us to participate in the final experiential adventure, the eternal adventure, the quest for the Father as absolute. From the larger perspective, the entire master-universe career is one of preparation for the final challenge and the last adventure - the Absolute Adventure. Some day we will look back on all of this, and know in fact what we now visualize in faith. The master universe is the spawning ground of the children of experience who will someday participate in the establishment of the unending universe of infinity.
From the perspective of Deity, the master universe appears to have four purposes: the evolution of the two experiential Deities and the emergence of the two experiential Trinities. Without the two experiential Deities there could be no formation of the two experiential Trinities. And, without the two experiential Trinities there could be no organization of the Trinity of Trinities. The deity-function of the master universe is the generation of the Supreme Being and the Trinity Ultimate, as well as the emergence of God the Ultimate and the Trinity Absolute. All this makes possible the final re-association of total actual Deity in the existential-experiential Trinity of Trinities.
2. The Answers To Seven Questions
Toward the end of the Introduction to this study we asked seven questions about the master universe. At the Conclusion of the study, it is fitting to see how we have fared in working out the answers to these questions. Let us repeat our original questions, and then take inventory of the answers as this study has worked them out:
(1) How large is a space level? Do they compare in size?
We have determined that space levels vary greatly in size. The grand universe is comparatively small in comparison with the outer universes. The space levels increase in size as we move outward from the superuniverses to the fourth outer space level. The progressive increase in size is very great.
(2) How long a time is a universe age? Are some ages longer than others?
We have found that a universe age is quite a long time. We have estimated that the Second Age (the one in which we are now living) is around fifty-thousand times greater than the age of the nebula that gave origin to our sun - and this nebula is about a trillion years old. It also appears the outer space ages will be of much longer duration than the present age - very much longer.
We have also seen that all universe ages are not qualitatively alike. The First Age is unique; it is a past-eternal age. The Second Age is also unique; it is the age of the growth of the Supreme Being. The four ages of the outer space levels can be grouped together because they are qualitatively akin; they are post-Supreme Ages (after the growth of the Supreme). They are the ages of the growth of the Ultimate. We have projected that there will be a Final Age, a post-Ultimate age; it is also unique - a future-eternal age, unending.
(3) How are the evolutions of the experiential Deities and the experiential Trinities related to the space levels and to the universe ages?
We have discovered that there seems to be a close relationship between these developments. All universes are not alike; some are nuclear universes, others are cytoplasmic universes.
We have identified three successive creations that are nuclear in relation to external domains that are cytoplasmic:
- (a) The central universe as the nucleus of the superuniverses.
- (b) The grand universe as the nucleus of the outer universes.
- (c) The master universe as the nucleus of the Cosmos Infinite.
A nuclear universe is associated with the appearance of new Deity and new Trinity; existential Deity and Trinity in relation to the existential central creation, experiential Deity and Trinity in relation to the experiential grand universe and master universe. A nuclear universe functions as a nucleus in relation to the external cytoplasmic creations that are dependent on it.
(4) What themes, patterns, and principles can we discover?
We have found a number of these. We will list them after the inventory of these answers to the seven questions we asked ourselves in the Introduction.
(5) How is man, as a finaliter, related to all this?
We have observed that the finaliters have the capacity to go on through all projected post-Havona growth: Supreme growth, post-Supreme growth, and even post-Ultimate growth. It appears that the finaliters have the personality and the needed attributes that will enable them to continue growing forever - they will never encounter absolute or final limits to growth. They may never be able to attain an infinite goal - a goal that is expanding faster than they are growing - but neither will they ever be stalemated or frustrated in their endless progression toward such a goal.
(6) Is the master universe the final creation?
We have reasonably established that the master universe is not the final creation. It appears to be the third (and perhaps the final) nuclear universe. It must exist as the nucleus of some greater cytoplasmic creation that will be external to it.
(7) What are the Final Limits? What is the Final Goal?
We cannot find the answers to these questions within the limits of our study of the master universe. But we have determined that the Final Limits and the Final Goal are external to the vast master creation.
These were the seven questions we asked ourselves at the start of this study; these are the answers we have worked out.
3. Themes, Principles, And Patterns
While we were unable to work out an answer to the seventh question (concerning the Final Limits and the Final Goal) within the confines of this study, still, we have been able to work out a number of answers to the fourth question:
"What themes, principles, and patterns can we discover?"
There are a number of themes, principles, and patterns that seem to run through the creative design of the master universe. Let us take an inventory of our findings:
I. Thesis, Antithesis, and Synthesis.
The principle of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis, seems to characterize all of the history of the master universe, even its antecedents. An original proposition is made, it is then contrasted by the formulation of a stimulative anti-proposition, and the two are then unified to the benefit and expansion of both.
II. The Transformation of Synthesis.
We have observed that a major synthesis (of a thesis and an antithesis) is signalized by the emergence of new deity. This is an expression of the synthesis. The emerging of such deity sets in motion a chain of events that results in the formation of a new trinity. This new trinity is the new thesis, a new challenge that arises out of the transformation of an old thesis.
III. Nuclear and Cytoplasmic Universes.
All universes are not alike; some are nuclear in relation to others which are external and cytoplasmic. We have observed that a nuclear universe is associated with the appearance of new deity and new trinity. Such a creation sustains a nuclear relationship to the creations that are external to it. Havona is the first nucleus, in relation to the cytoplasmic superuniverses. The grand universe is the second nucleus, in relation to the cytoplasmic outer universes. The master universe is the third nucleus, the final nucleus, in relation to the cytoplasmic Cosmos Infinite.
IV. Cytoplasmic Need Expands Nuclear Function.
Each new cytoplasmic creation suffers from the lack of something that is (or was) present in its nuclear universe. The superuniverses lack Havona perfection; the outer universes will lack finite experience. This cytoplasmic need challenges the nuclear creation to expand in service ministry. In meeting this challenge, the nuclear creation rises above the growth-limit that had been previously attained.
In the present universe age, Havona adds evolutionary growth to the static condition of inherent and eternal perfection. In the next universe age, the superuniverses will add some unknown growth potential to the present evolutionary growth-limit that is represented by established status in light and life. What the Cosmos Infinite might add to the nuclear master universe could be the opening of co-absolute growth potential to a creature-creation that had completely exhausted all possibilities for finite and absonite growth.
V. Power-Personality Unification.
All experiential growth seems to involve the union of power and personality. This is true on deity levels in the evolution of the Supreme and the Ultimate. It is also true on creature levels, in human experience. On creature levels, the successful unification of power and personality seems to depend on the subordination of matter-dominating mind to spirit direction by virtue of the free-will choice of the personal creature. On deity levels, the union of power and personality seems to require the consolidation (within experiential Deity) of all things, meanings, and values (all matter, mind, and spirit reality) of the level concerned - be it finite, absonite, or absolute.
VI. Creative Associations of Dual-Deity.
We have observed that Dual-Deity partnerships function on the creative frontier, that Trinity administration takes over after universes have been organized and perfected. We have also observed the transition in the Dual-Deity associations: from Father-Son in the First Age, to Son-Spirit in the Second, and to Spirit-Supreme in the ages of the outer space creations. We have noted that this evolution of these dual associations apparently goes on to the Supreme-Ultimate and beyond, but we cannot trace these dual relationships beyond the Spirit-Supreme within the confines of the master universe.
VII. Divergence and Convergence.
The diversification of reality seems to be favored because it is a technique of avoiding the monotony of sameness. On the deity level, this is illustrated by the uniquely different natures of the Seven Master Spirits. These seven Spirits personalize seven unique expressions of the unity of Paradise Deity. These divergent expressions converge (unite) finitely in the Supreme, absolutely in the Ultimate.
In terms of the universes this is illustrated by the uniqueness of each superuniverse, each one being uniquely different from all others because each is reflective of the unique nature of its supervising Master Spirit. This uniqueness is fostered until the consolidation of the superuniverses after the full emergence of the Supreme Being. Subsequent to his emergence there is a convergence, a consolidation, of the seven cultures of the supercreations. (On the planetary level, each of the evolutionary races is encouraged to develop its own individualistic culture; later, all of these diverse cultures are blended in the Adamic civilization.)
This divergence may grow in complexity in the outer space creations. There are seven diverse environments and cultures in the superuniverses; there may be 49 in the Primary Space Level, and still more in the succeeding space levels.
VIII. Organic Consistency.
The universe is a living organism and it exhibits qualities of organic consistency. Certain actions give rise to certain repercussions that are inherent in the acts themselves. This appears to be true because the universes do function, in many ways, like living organisms. Omnipotence, for example, does not mean that the nondoable can be accomplished. The acts of God are consistent, and the functions of his co-ordinates are likewise consistent.
IX. Trinitization as an Escape from Infinity.
We did not actually derive this principal from our study of the master universe - it is pre-master universe, and (perhaps) post-master universe. At the end of this study we encountered The Barrier of Infinity and The Impasse of the Absolutes. This produced a stalemate in the efforts of the Second Experiential Trinity to unify. In the Prologue to our study, we observed that God escaped from the limitations that were inherent in his infinity status by the technique of trinitization. In the Epilogue, we will encounter a similar situation - but with a difference. God was "breaking out" of infinity; the experiential Deities will be trying to "break in."
We submit this has been a profitable study.