Part IV Illegally PrintedPress Release: Urantia Foundation Communication July 24, 1999
We are sad to acknowledge that one of our brothers and fellow readers, Harrt McMullan III, a General Councilor, a member of the Executive Committee, and the Treasurer of the Fellowship, has chosen to print Part IV of The Urantia Book. One of the Trustees, an old and dear friend of Mr. McMullan's, as well as numerous other individuals, have repeatedly appealed to him not to pursue this illegal and unauthorized publication.We see Mr. McMullan's publishing of Part IV separate from Parts I, II, and III as counterproductive for the following reasons:
1. It is illegal.
2. It does not preserve the text -- the entire text -- inviolate.
3. It must surely frustrate the efforts of the authors of the book as they have given us a carefully painted picture of the cosmos, its origin, history, and destiny in relation to the life and teaching of Jesus, our Creator Son, as he is carefully portrayed in Parts I, II, III, and IV of the book.
4. It encourages other people to break up the book, to break the law, and to violate the copyright.
5. It presents the Urantia teachings as a Christian cult -- especially with the crucified Christ on the cover, rather than as the fifth epochal revelation to the entire world. The Foundation has worked diligently to avoid presenting TheUrantia Book as another "white man's religion" -- witness the Korean and Arabic translations and the Trustees recent trip to Muslim Senegal.
6. It is an affront to the unity initiatives.
A Divine Counselor of Uversa warns us on page 215:
"There is always great danger of succumbing to the error of the circumscribed viewpoint, to the evil inherent in a segmentalized conception of reality and divinity.For example: The human mind would ordinarily crave to approach the cosmic philosophy portrayed in these revelations by proceeding from the simple and the finite to the complex and the infinite, from human origins to divine destinies. But that path does not lead to spiritual wisdoin. Such a procedure is the easiest path to a certain form of genetic knowledge, but at best it can only reveal man's origin; it reveals little or nothing about his divine destiny.
"Even in thestudy of man's biologic evolution on Urantia, there are grave objections to the exclusive historic approach to his present --day status and his current problems. The true perspective of any reality problem -- human or divine, terrestrial or cosmic -- can be had on1y be had by the full and unprejudiced study and correlation of three phases of universe reality: origin, history, and destiny. The proper understanding of these three experiential realities affords the basis for a wise estimate of the current status.
"When the human mind undertakes to follow the philosophic technique of starting from the lower to approach the higher, whether in biology or theology, it is always in danger of committing four errors of reasoning.
"1. It may utterly fail to perceive the final and completed evolutionary goal of either personal attainment or cosmic destiny.
"2. It may commit the supreme philosophical blunder by oversimplifying cosmic evolutionary (experiential) reality, thus leading to the distortion of facts, to the perversion of truth and to the misconception of destinies.
"3. The sudy of causation is the perusal of history, but the knowledge of how a being becomes does not necessarily provide an intelligent understanding of the present status and true character of such a being.
"4. History alone fails adequately to revealfuture development -- destiny. Finite origins are helpful but only divine causes reveal final effects. Eternal ends are not shown in time beginnings. The present can be truly interpreted only in the light of the correlated past and future.
"Therefore, because of these and for still other reaons, do we employ the technique of approaching man and his planetary problems by embarkation on the time-space journey ftom the infinite, the eternal, and divine Paradise Source and Center of all personality reality and all cosmic existence." (The Urantia Book, p. 215)
The Trustees and staff of Urantia Foundation, the leadership of the International Urantia Association, and many members of the Fellowship have vigorously in thought, word, and deed promoted and pursued a policy of unity and cooperation among readers and reader groups.
Acting on his own, without the approval of the Fellowship's General Council, Mr. McMullan, the Treasurer of the Fellowship's Executive Committee, has illegally printed 15,000 copies of Part IV of The Urantia Book. In so doing, he is causing controversy and divisiveness within the community of readers.
We believe the copyright to be an important tool to preserve inviolate the text of The Urantia Book for current and especially for future generations. The preservation of the inviolate text has always been, according to the Declaration of Trust, the Trustees' "primary duty." Dr. Sadler wrote a history, which he never published but shared with early readers. In his history, Dr. Sadler said:
"The (Contact) Commissioners were the custodians of the Urantia manuscript, keeping the carbon copy of the typewritten transcript in a fireproof vault. They were also charged with full responsibility for supervising all the details connected with the publication of the Book, securing the international copyrights, etc."
Accordingly, in 1932, Wilfred Kellogg (one of the Contact Commissioners) initiated correspondence with the United States Copyright Office in an effort to obtain a copyright which would protect The Urantia Book "against infiingement for an indefinite period." There are copies of this correspondence in the Foundation's files.
Those individuals who were involved in the early years knew that midwayer instructions existed, and these instructions were often quoted in papers written and speeches made by early leaders of the Foundation and the Brotherhood. Some opponents of the copyright discredit these instructions because acknowledging them would mean acknowledging the need for, and the importance of, the copyright.
In her "A History of the Urantia Movement," Emma L. Christensen (a Contact Cominissioner commonly known as Christy) writes the following:
"Under the guidance of the Revelatory Commission, Urantia Foundation was formed on January 11, 1950.Urantia Foundation is intended to act as a shield for the Revelation. It was charged "to perpetually preserve inviolate the text of The Urantia Book," including any translations and derivative works. It has the ultimate responsibility "to disseminate the principles, teachings, and doctrines of The Urantia Book."
Until the time of its publication, The Urantia Book had been under the guidance of the Revelatory Commission.
The Contact Commissioners were told that the Urantia revelation was authorized by Michael of Nebadon himself. This is substantiated in the book on page 241:"After his elevation to settled sovereignty in a local universe a Paradise Michael is in full control of all other Sons of God functioning in his domain, and he may freely rule in accordance with his concept of the needs of his realms. A Master Son may at will vary the order of the spiritual adjudication and evolutionary adjustment of the inhabited planets. And such Sons do make and carry out the plans of their own choosing in all matters of special planetary needs, in particular regarding the worlds of their creature sojourn and still more concerning the realm of
terminal bestowal, the planet of incarnation in the likeness of mortal flesh." (The Urantia Book, p.241, 3)
A notable inconsistency in Mr. McMullan's adherence to law is that he has sought permission from the Sain Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art in Scotland to use the painting, Christ of St. John of the Cross, by Salvador Dali, but has not sought permission from Urantia Foundation to reproduce text from The Urantia Book. He has also taken care to copyright the accompanying index to his book as well as the total volume arrangement and cover design.
Sources close to Mr. McMullan inform us that he would invite a lawsuit from the Foundation, and that he would expend millions of his personal fortune to break the Foundation's ownership of the copyright in Part IV -- and thereby drive Part
IV of The Urantia Book into the public domain. He has expressed to readers his determination to destroy Urantia Foundation. Mr. McMullan is the owner and chairman of Alliaince Steel Company.
If you agree with our position, please consider doing the following:1. Employ the Jesus grievance procedure. Inform Mr. McMuflan that you disapprove of what he has done, that you disapprove of his breaking the law, that you disapprove of his breaking up the book, and that you support the Foundation's
ownership of the copyright.
2. Inform the General Council of the Fellowship and its Society leaders that you think they should take a strong position in opposition to Mr McMuflan's breaking the law, and that they should take a strong position in support of the Foundation's ownership of the copyright and marks and in opposition to anyone's Inffinging the copyright (Article 11, headed "Purpose" of the Fellowship's constitution states: ".. -- through the medium of fraternal orgaruization, ever obedient and subservient to the laws of this contry and of all countries wherein The Fellowship may extend.")
3. Discourage people from buying this illegal, unauthorized, and partial presentation of the fifth epochal revelation.