The Fruits of the Spirit

Attending the Earth Harmony Festival at Avalon Gardens in Tumecaruia Arizona was a life changing experience. This festival was promoted as a “sustainable living event” and that is exactly what it was. The farms media team used their awesome video and other promotional activities to draw in visitors from all around Arizona, including a large group of forty college students from Arizona State College. Their program included tours of the property, lots of live music, and many vendors. Avalon Garden residents provided meals for campers, as well as solar heated showers. I would estimate that a few hundred people or more visited the festival over the weekend.

There was much anticipation and even minor anxiety about this trip mostly due to the responses to the post “What Media Can Do” which highlighted the festivals media promotion and appeal. There was definitely concern that I was being deceived by this community and that when I arrived I would discover they are really a backwards spiritual cult, being lead astray by their leader “Gabrial of Urantia”. This did not happen.

You might be thinking to yourself  “did they do this event just as a vehicle to proselytize?” and the answer is no. The only way you would have known that Avalon Gardens was a community of Urantia Book readers is if you would have visited their information tent and asked what the big blue book was on the table next to dozens of other books. Even then they may not have shared with you what is at the core of their communities spiritual practices. There was no active or organized evangelism of any kind that I was aware of. And really to be honest they didn’t need it. The fruits of their spirits were so present and radiant that words would have been a disservice as an explanation of their motivations and sentiments. Every person I encountered was floored by this community, the people in it, and the love they showed. And because of this the second morning at the breakfast table we started a fruitful conversation about the UB which lead to many of the students taking one home with genuine interest.

So let me just say it. I couldn’t have been more impressed or inspired by what I experienced, and that rang true for my Christian friend Tim who also accompanied me, well aware of the stories about this community. Because of the concern that preceded my attending this event I was very up to speed on the opinions in the greater Urantia community about Gabriel, his activities, and actions of the past. I had received everything from requests to take the post about this festival down completely, to phone calls warning me of the possible dangerous nature of Gabriel, as well as other Urantian’s saying my actions had “lack of wisdom and discernment”. All of this was unwarranted, somewhat hurt my feelings, and also gave me great tenacity to learn all I could about what I was getting myself into.

Still I attended this event with an open mind and open heart and was received with the same embrace. My mind set going in was that Gabriel of Urantia must be a strong leader and controller of this group. Because he believes he is in communication with divine beings he is surely set fast in his mission and not open to others ideas and motivations. But through my communications with Gabriels son Amadon and the fun nature of their media I could sense that, just as we are experiencing in our community, the next generation was taking a big roll in the progress of the movement.

While at this event I meet and had great conversations with most of the full time residents of Avalon Gardens including Gabriel. What I experienced was fun, fulfilled, open minded Urantia Book readers who desired nothing more than to serve me and the others attending the festival. Many of them shared stories with me about their experience of finding this community and how it has changed their lives. They each have talents that they are cultivating including music, art, dance, singing, gardening, and much more. Not a single one tried to talk with me about the continuing revelation that Gabriel teaches. They didn’t care what I thought about their spiritual practices, only that I was a brother and fellow student of the revelation. They also shared stories about leaving the community and coming back. Some have children that have left for years and come back with their family. Everyone is there by their own free will living out their own spiritual journey.

Going to visit Avalon Gardens or Gabriel of Urantia is harmless and quite rewarding, in my opinion. To see such a loving group of spiritually motivated Urantian’s was a eye opener. The insight that was so contrasting to me is their dedication and focus of purpose with no care what so ever with the actions and activities of other Urantia organizations. They never inquired about any other Urantia groups or what they are up to. Its pretty apparent they have excepted being written off and are now 100% focused on their projects. That doesn’t go to say though that they didn’t want to hear what I was doing and how we could work together on common goals.

In conclusion the “Earth Harmony Festival” was a lot of fun and I would recommend that anyone who is curious about Avalon Gardens or their activities go visit them. I fully understand why some people have a negative opinion about some of the history of this group, but my confusion was that a majority of the negative comments were from people who had never visited this community, and those who had mostly had good things to say. So I really desired to find out for myself. I do not feel that our master would sit on one side of a mountain and judge people living on the other side because of stories he had heard. I believe he would surely visit these people and try and discover their sentiments and motivations before passing judgment.

Personally I have not read the books Gabriael has published. From what I have read about his teachings some of the claims contradict the revelation and for me personally that doesn’t work. But I refuse to shut my mind or my heart down to learning more about his claims or the claims of anyone about anything for that matter. Through visiting this community I was able to experience first hand the nature and personality’s of these people.

I pray for open mindedness of my fellow Urantian’s and suggest that we consider that each generation must discover for itself what rings as true and what does not. There are many great workings a foot at Avalon Gardens. I have never in my life experienced such a motivated, loving, health conscious community. Whether you believe in Gabriel or not, what they have accomplished is beautiful and it is working. Is it not possible we could learn something from them? I believe we can.

Any religious belief which is effective in spiritualizing the believer is certain to have powerful repercussions in the social life of such a religionist. Religious experience unfailingly yields the “fruits of the spirit” in the daily life of the spirit-led mortal. P1091:5, 99:5.6

“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.” 103:1.3


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25 thoughts on “The Fruits of the Spirit”

  1. Good to hear your positive insights on the Avalon Community.
    I have long been interested in sustainable living as well as local
    commune entities built around a central concept.
    In our case the Fifth E. Revelation …IMO what a great way to fellowship,subsist and grow in a environment conducive of the spiritual concepts we have been given.
    No community this side of the Mansions is perfectly run…this life we are given is an experiment individually and socially.
    We need many such groups…the “Garden Project” being one.
    Good for young and old.

    1. Miranda Clendening

      If you have more info about the “Garden Project”…will you please post it. I heard about it at conferences years ago but nothing lately. What is happening now? If you know?

  2. It’s a distinct possibility that the higher ideals these folks subscribe to have eclipsed the desire for supernatural leaders that is a part of our design – making the claims of their leader largely irrelevant. Perhaps the majority have transcended leader veneration.

    92:5.5 Most great religious epochs have been inaugurated by the life and teachings of some outstanding personality; leadership has originated a majority of the worth-while moral movements of history. And men have always tended to venerate the leader, even at the expense of his teachings; to revere his personality, even though losing sight of the truths which he proclaimed. And this is not without reason; there is an instinctive longing in the heart of evolutionary man for help from above and beyond. This craving is designed to anticipate the appearance on earth of the Planetary Prince and the later Material Sons. On Urantia man has been deprived of these superhuman leaders and rulers, and therefore does he constantly seek to make good this loss by enshrouding his human leaders with legends pertaining to supernatural origins and miraculous careers.

  3. Then what do you make of the Dateline show about Mr.Sedona ? It can found here It can’t be simply that you think Dateline was biased or lied, seeing as so much is just video of what happened there and quotes from his books. Clearly the interview is real. Is it that some how you do not find such things troubling? If so please explain to me. I would really like to know why these things don’t bother you. It is not sufficient to say it was some time ago and we should forget it as if the past does not affect the present or the future.

    1. In support of Andrew’s comments, I offer the following passage from The Urantia Book for consideration:

      (19:1.6) The true perspective of any reality problem—human or divine, terrestrial or cosmic—can be had only 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.

      If one believes The Urantia Book is authentic, the importance of applying this passage to the issues at hand is all too obvious. This passage about “origin, history, and destiny” is a well known passage among serious students of the revelation. The fact that those speaking in support of Anthony Delevin’s personality-based cult do not proactively reference this passage and address this teaching reflects at best incompetent ignorance for any type of leadership position in the Urantia community and insincerity at worst.

      Let’s not have Landmark Education nonsense about the past is in the past, Teuvo. Please give us a direct and thorough response to this sincere and pertinent question that is based on what The Urantia Book teaches. How do you apply this passage to the issues at hand?

      1. Halbert I would be happy to give you my thoughts.

        As for the quote my questions would be… What is the exact problem we are talking about?

        Please be specific to exact instances that you feel we should hold Anthony Delevin accountable for to this day?

        Halbert Landmark Education is not nonsense and if you gave it a try you could become more affective in dealing with people in a kinder manner. Putting people down by calling them “incompetent” and “ignorant” speaks for itself to any follower of Jesus reading these threads.

    2. Andrew, Thank you for your thoughts. I have watched the Dateline video and thought some parts were biased and some were not.

      What exact part did you find troubling?

      I happen to disagree that it is not sufficient to say that some of these incidences happened in the past.

      If someone had video taped some of my actions from years ago, you would have seen me say and do things that would shock people today. But over time I became more in tune with my pilot light and changed my ways.

      Andrew what I would request from you as a brother in service is a understanding that I went and visited these people personally. I spent time with them and was able to begin to understand them and love them as fellow brothers and sisters.

      The past is the past and that’s that. I leave it there so the future is wide open for possibility.

      If I ever have an experience or witness something I think I need to worn my community about know I will be the first to say something. But what I can not do is hold these 100 Urantia Book students in contempt for actions of their leader in 1996.

      I hope this gives you an idea of my thoughts about how to deal with concerns raised about the dateline episode.

      Thanks again Andrew.

      1. 1. I agree that as individuals we should not dwell on negative aspects of our past. Repent of sin and move on from it, looking towards the progressive future. However, when it comes to giving people responsibility, don’t we always take their past into account? If for example someone has a past history of sexual violence toward children, one would be unwise to leave the children with that person, even if the person hasn’t done anything bad in awhile. (In Tony Delevin’s case, do we KNOW he hasn’t acted badly lately? What is this claim based on? He seems to hold the exact same deluded beliefs about the grandeur of his own personality as he always has. A recent video of him and his partner describes them as “the most enlightened teachers on the planet” or something like that.And no I am not accusing Delevin of sexual violence. That’s an example.)
        Sometimes it takes a very long time before an individual can sufficiently demonstrate the growth needed to justify being handed serious responsibility. Consider this: Michael of Nebadon offers mercy to all Lanonandek Sons who go astray. But those Lanonandeks who went astray as System Sovereigns or Planetary Princes are never given such positions of supreme responsibility again.
        “There exists a plan for saving these wayward and unwise Sons, and many have availed themselves of this merciful provision; but never again may they function in those positions wherein they defaulted. After rehabilitation they are assigned to custodial duties and to departments of physical administration.” 35:9.10
        These Lanonandeks had humans and other children to take care of and they blew it. Apply this to our own level. When a man in charge of a commune displays again and again reprehensible treatment of his followers, doesn’t this justify disapproving of his being trusted with such responsibility again? At least for the remainder of his earth life?

        2. Teuvo writes “I spent time with them and was able to begin to understand them and love them as fellow brothers and sisters … what I can not do is hold these 100 Urantia Book students in contempt for actions of their leader in 1996.”
        Learning to love our brothers and sisters has nothing to do with discerning their human capacities of intellectual errors.
        And this is really not about holding these followers “in contempt”. I do not have contempt for those followers of Tony Delevin who are sincere, which I imagine the majority of them are. I have contempt for the people in positions of authority and influence at the cult who abuse and/or misguide their followers.

        1. Teuvo, the quotes David and Halbert reference clearly show that the Book teaches the importance of the past. If I may add my own that has personal significance 177:2.4.”Your young friend Amos believes this gospel of the kingdom just as much as you, but I cannot fully depend upon him; I am not certain about what he will do in the years to come. His early home life was not such as would produce a wholly dependable person. Amos is too much like one of the apostles who failed to enjoy a normal, loving, and wise home training. Your whole afterlife will be more happy and dependable because you spent your first eight years in a normal and well-regulated home. You possess a strong and well-knit character because you grew up in a home where love prevailed and wisdom reigned. Such a childhood training produces a type of loyalty which assures me that you will go through with the course you have begun.” It seems you disagree. In light of Geoff’s post “Interfaith?” I gather I am not expose to assume that people agree with all the teachings in the Book anymore but I still do not want to reach the conclusion that you disagree with the Book with out your input.

          On what bothered me in the Dateline video there where several issues but the one most troubling to me is the deconstruction of normal family life by communal living, the acceptance of infidelity by leaders, and the theological promotion of polygamy. Regarding polygamy in particular they still sell, unrevised the book advocating such; making it rather hard for me to believe that there anti-family attitudes have changed much. Genuine religion always glorifies the home and by associating with those who would pervert it we abandon our sacred trust as religionists.

          1. My friends, while reading this morning I came across this and thought it applied to the conversation….

            “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.” 103:1.3

          2. As to your comment from today about not becoming “egocentric”, etc., I wanted to add what I feel is one of the most important statements the Book makes:

            52:6.2 Even on normal evolutionary worlds the realization of the world-wide brotherhood of man is not an easy accomplishment. On a confused and disordered planet like Urantia such an achievement requires a much longer time and necessitates far greater effort. Unaided social evolution can hardly achieve such happy results on a spiritually isolated sphere. Religious revelation is essential to the realization of brotherhood on Urantia. While Jesus has shown the way to the immediate attainment of spiritual brotherhood, the realization of social brotherhood on your world depends much on the achievement of the following personal transformations and planetary adjustments:

            1. Social fraternity. Multiplication of international and interracial social contacts and fraternal associations through travel, commerce, and competitive play. Development of a common language and the multiplication of multi-linguists. The racial and national interchange of students, teachers, industrialists, and religious philosophers.

            2. Intellectual cross-fertilization. Brotherhood is impossible on a world whose inhabitants are so primitive that they fail to recognize the folly of unmitigated selfishness. There must occur an exchange of national and racial literature. Each race must become familiar with the thought of all races; each nation must know the feelings of all nations. Ignorance breeds suspicion, and suspicion is incompatible with the essential attitude of sympathy and love.

            3. Ethical awakening. 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.

            4. Political wisdom. Emotional maturity is essential to self-control. Only emotional maturity will insure the substitution of international techniques of civilized adjudication for the barbarous arbitrament of war. Wise statesmen will sometime work for the welfare of humanity even while they strive to promote the interest of their national or racial groups. Selfish political sagacity is ultimately suicidal—destructive of all those enduring qualities which insure planetary group survival.

            5. Spiritual insight. The brotherhood of man is, after all, predicated on the recognition of the fatherhood of God. The quickest way to realize the brotherhood of man on Urantia is to effect the spiritual transformation of present-day humanity. The only technique for accelerating the natural trend of social evolution is that of applying spiritual pressure from above, thus augmenting moral insight while enhancing the soul capacity of every mortal to understand and love every other mortal. Mutual understanding and fraternal love are transcendent civilizers and mighty factors in the world-wide realization of the brotherhood of man.
            Have a blessed, fun & Loving weekend!

          3. Andrew to me it seems that you are implying that the people who grew up at Avalon Gardens did not have normal childhoods? I just want be clear that’s what you meant by quoting this section of the book.

            I’m very confused how you interpret anything Geoff or me have written as suggesting that we disagree with the Urantia Book. If fact I would personally say its the exact opposite.

            This conversation started with my post about the media appeal of the “Earth Harmony Festival” with no mention of Gabriel. My post “fruits of the spirit” was about my personal experience from visiting their farm. No where did I ever indorse Gabriels claims or say that past actions where ok or should be ignored.

            It’s true that I have different ideas of how a community like this might be ran, and that I don’t believe that there is a continued revelation but that was not the focus of these two articles. It surely may be the focus in the future. The purpose of these articles was to state the simple truth about the quality media which Gabriels community is producing.

            As I posted above I believe the UB tells us to keep our minds open to all religions and the unique people who experience them in varied colorful ways.

            “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.” 103:1.3

            The question I’m left asking myself by reading the last sentence of your response is, are we in the business of pointing out who is practicing Genuine Religion?

            Thank you for this engaging conversation Andrew. Look forward to talking in person next weekend!

            “The true perspective of any reality problem—human or divine, terrestrial or cosmic—can be had only 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.” 19:1.6

            “There exists a plan for saving these wayward and unwise Sons, and many have availed themselves of this merciful provision; but never again may they function in those positions wherein they defaulted. After rehabilitation they are assigned to custodial duties and to departments of physical administration.” 35:9.10

      2. When I visited this community in 2008, I noticed a few disturbing things. The member I had come to visit (and who was relatively high on the community hierarchy, living there for years) told me the following: that he was ordered to marry the woman he did, that only Gabriel had the right to choose a woman freely since he believed that the members didn’t know what was best for them) and onlyl he was allowed to have more than one wife, that all the members had to give up their personal possessions (for example, i asked one of the girls why she hadn’t brought her beloved horse she had talked about, since there were horses on the property. The whole table fell silent, and someone changed the conversation topic), that one of the members for example would like to visit her ailing dad but that the pressure for her to stay and work plus her having no own money to travel prevented her from it, that nobody had healthcare, and people worked 40+ hours on the farm, all except Gabriel, who had more important things to do. The friend I was visiting told me that members of the community (and only them) would be picked up by a UFO when the world goes down. Now tell me again this is a harmless community.

        1. Asla, Thank you for your comments of personal experience with Avalon. I wrote this article some time ago after my first visit.

          At that time I was aware of the different beliefs the community heald but attempted to see what was working.

          Since that time much has happened in our community in relationship to Avalon and its members. We opened our doors to them in the spirit of “unity of spirit not beliefs, as the master instructed but found that their real motivations were to recruit young people back to their farm.

          To this day I hold to negative feelings about Avalon or its members. In fact quite the opposite.

          I believe, as I always have, that Gabriel is a false profit promoting teachings. But I am not the judge of his or anyone else’s actions. I can only speak from my own experiences. Others must come to their own conclusion through personal experience. Many have and recently about 11 people left Avalon.

          They seem to be undergoing changes as you might imagine. When the foundation of your community is built on false truths it’s only a matter of time till things fall apart.

          I hope that others who have experienced Avalon personally will step forward and submit writings to share with others. Not in an attempt to make them wrong but to help others understand.

          I love many members of the Avalon community no matter how different our beliefs might be.

          Thank you again for your comments.

          1. Hello all,
            I will step forward Teuvo. As a former member of 7 years, I have experienced both sides of the spectrum. God did lead me there, and I have gained some wonderful skills, and studied the UB. God is using this community, many lovely people there trying to do God’s highest will, unaware that Tony and cfer are fraud. You are stripped of your belongings and have to give up your freewill to follow Tony’s rules, because he knows better than you! Tears families apart too including spouses. He has been everyone you can imagine in his past lives, including Van, and goes as far to say Van came from the universe of Avalon to serve on the prince’s staff. UB says they were citizens of Jerusem. His ego has run wild, and I was one of 18 members who individually left in 2015, not as a group together. The tally has stayed around 100 forever, so I think Michael has a “governor” on the membership, not letting it get bigger. I believe souls are growing there, but the deception is also harmful. Many rules of conduct that are not Jesusonian, like when you leave, you have to with nothing, no money, car, past rental/employment history, and members have to pretend you don’t exist anymore. Your loving family is told you defaulted on God and are now scum to not ever to be spoken to again. If you tell them you want to leave, they try to “council” you, break you down, tell you, you need more humility, and your lower patterns are why you are walking out on God! Absolute mind control that visitors do not see. People are strongly pushed to “do more” and are overworked, serving God in your heart, but Tony on paper. It is a cult with good people, being lied to. I believe there has been a fallen being involved(paladin can not be a finaliter), the origin of cfer, and Tony’s dillusional mind takes the ball and runs with it. I may be wrong, it could be just his product. He appears to be borrowing stuff from the teaching mission, and forming it to serve his desires of power and being worshipped. The UB clearly disproves cfer as being a continuation, complete contradiction. If he just had his cult, would not be a big deal, but contaminating the 5th Epochal Revelation IS happening there. I have forgiven Tony, but have had deep pain of being lied to, deceived, and thrown to the dogs, which God took care of me after leaving, and my whole adventure was God’s leading. I am a better person from my experience, found God at Avalon in the members, not from Tony, and it’s been hard to adjust back to reality. This is my sharing for all to consider, and willing to share more if anyone has questions.

  4. I don’t judge until I see it first hand. I trust Teuvo as a well rounded, intelligent human being, an astute student of The Urantia Book, a man whose wisdom grows & I respect his opinion to the max!
    I let go of the past because I do not “live there”. I live in the “everlasting now!” If there’s something going on that we can learn from, then by all means, let us “observe” with the mind of a child, free of prejudice & opinion. Thanks Teuvo, you are a true asset to the Urantia revelation. & the cool thing is, I now have a chance to go check out Arizona, again & “see” what’s happening with my sisters & brothers!

  5. The text below is taken from the report called “Selling Sedona”, which can be found posted on this page

    Paula Thompson, while acting as the Administrator of, recounts her own experience,
    [T]here was the woman who called our office crying uncontrollably because she had sold all she had in the world, taken her young daughter and herself to Sedona, given all the proceeds (hundreds of thousands of dollars) of her estate to Gabriel, only to have them both kicked out penniless on the street because she dared to disagree with Gabriel in a UB study session.

    Then there was the call from a woman in the San Francisco Bay area, who went there with her husband of more than twenty years to check the Aquarian community out. After about a week there, Gabriel began telling her many negative things about her spouse and hinting that she needed to divorce her husband and come and live in Sedona. Telling her that she was in but he was out. She was incredulous that he actually attempted to break up her marriage and called me to see what was being done about him.

    Then there was the call from the man whose fiancé had gone to the community and he was not allowed to communicate with her anymore. He called several times crying and pleading for something to be done that he might be able to talk to her and know why she no longer wanted him, he longed for closure and was worried about her, not knowing anything. She could have been dead for all he knew.

    Then there was the man who called and asked me to pray for him because he was the only other UB study group in Sedona and how most of the people who attended his group were people trying to break away from Gabriel. He had already seen two of the ex-Aquarians commit suicide in the aftermath, and said that these people were so broken when they came out of the community, it was hard if not impossible for him to be able to know how to help them. He openly wondered why God had put him in such a position to help people so hopeless and confused. He told me that he felt completely unable to cope with their needs, having no professional ability to help them, and feared that he would not be able to continue to offer refuge for them. He told me how each person who attempted to leave the community was completely shunned by the people they had so come to love there, and how most of them had given Gabriel everything, leaving them with no means of starting a new life.

    Then there was a personal friend of mine who went there to see a dear friend who had joined Gabriel years before. He had been able to keep in touch with his friend for many years but had lost contact with him and was having no luck reaching him. He heard that the group was performing in a public place and traveled more than a thousand miles in hopes of connecting with his friend there. Which he did. His friend of twenty years informed him that he could not come over for a visit because Gabriel would have to give prior approval of such a thing and he was not available to do so. Finally, the second in command gave this 40-year-old man permission to see his friend off the property. The once successful businessman had to be taken to dinner, as he could no longer afford to pay for his own meal. He confessed to the friend that Gabriel controls all the money, and that even expenditures for items such as toothpaste have to be approved by him.

    Another personal friend of mine who is elderly used to study with Gabriel, back when he was know as Tony Develin in the LA area. Tony bilked my friend out of a great deal of money, calling it a loan, a “loan” that has never been paid back. Do you think a spiritual leader would do this to an elderly man?

    Then there were the young adult siblings who stopped by my office as they were traveling around the country. They never made it beyond Sedona. When I ran into her at an Expo in Phoenix, she wistfully reminisced about traveling to Egypt several years before. I asked her why she doesn’t travel anymore, she told me that Gabriel won’t allow them to go more than a five mile radius away because the end times are coming soon. (Paula Thompson, Personal Communication, 2/2/2005)

    1. David, I would like to respond to your posting of Paula Thompson’s sad stories with my own experience of calling the UB Fellowship – which had a decidedly happy outcome.

      It was 1994 and my then 16-year-old son visited his father who had recently moved to Sedona to be part of (then) Aquarian Concepts Community. My son came home convicted that this was his destiny – that he had found his tribe – and that he was going to join them as well. I was devastated because like many other mothers (including even Mary, I suppose) I had “made other plans” for my son’s life. I knew the UB – not well enough, nor as well as I do now – and I trusted that someone in Chicago would give me information about these people and their purpose. I’m sure I was in an anguished state when I called – perhaps like the ones that Paula describes. I know I was afraid. I don’t recall the exact conversation – or to whom I talked – but I know it fed my fear. I was urged to do whatever I could to rescue my son from their clutches. Somehow I was put in touch with an apostate member – but he was more frightful than even my worst imaginings. His ranting and ravings against Gabriel were so over the top that I wondered about his stability. What he told me about his experience just didn’t mesh with what I knew to be true about my son (and his father). I knew that if I followed down his paranoid path I would not find what was really happening. So instead I went to visit.

      I visited again and again over a 12 year period. I became a more serious student of the UB, at first to share a common bond with my son, but over time the truth of the Revelation ignited my desire to seek God in all things. I read materials from ACC (now GCCA) as well and attended Sunday Services whenever I visited. Every word I read and heard passed through my “Spirit of Truth Detector” – and it all rang true. My encounters with community members were like a cornucopia of the fruits of the spirit. It became undeniable to me that what was happening in Sedona was real – beyond my wildest imagination and beyond my initial fear and even beyond reason. Long story short, I too responded to God’s calling and recognized my destiny. I was not coerced in any way; rather I was always lovingly encouraged to seek the Truth. My realization blossomed slowly over time – unlike my son who knew in a heartbeat – but we are very different souls and that is as it should be.

      I have been living with Global Community Communications Alliance – first as an initiate and then a member – for six years this week. In every way it meets and exceeds my limited capacity to understand the Urantia Book, Urantia itself, and my place in the cosmos. When doubts crop up – because they do and they should – they are met and answered. Every time I have wondered about a decision that our leaders and elders have made, it has come back a thousand fold as exactly the right thing to do. We are not mindless automatons who just do what we are told. We are thinkers. We think deeply, examine prayerfully, seek counsel and act accordingly – but always with the full participation of our Thought Adjusters, the Spirit of Truth (and an Angel of Enlightenment or two for good measure). I don’t know about criticism that family members are ostracized – I am living proof that they are not. We are always encouraged to go the extra mile toward reconciliation with family and friends – but never to compromise our covenant with God.

      I heard an interview on NPR recently with a woman who wrote a book about her job as a translator for Emergency Services – when there is a language barrier she is enlisted to go between the caller, who is always in a state of distress, the dispatcher, and the EMTs. She shared that because she is involved with people in just a tiny moment of crisis – with no knowledge of the lifetime that led up to it or anything thereafter – she often yearns to know how the story ended.

      When I made my 911 call to God all those years ago, the person on the end of the line in Chicago was well equipped for the task of easing my pain and anguish. She had the Urantia Book – clearly the best emergency manual on the planet. She could have reminded me that, in the words of Teilhard de Chardin “in the context of cosmic values, only the fantastic has a chance of being true.” But in case she is wondering the outcome of my story – there was a miraculous healing, for which I will be eternally grateful.

      Layola Eden

  6. In response to Teuvo’s comments to me and in other posts . . .

    Teuvo wrote: “Halbert Landmark Education is not nonsense and if you gave it a try . . .”

    Regarding my experience with Landmark Education, I worked as the Executive Assistant to the Direct of Human Resources at their world headquarters in San Francisco. Additionally, I participated in over 500 hours of their programs, including the seminar leaders training and the Wisdom Course (a year long course that runs roughly with the calendar year). At the conclusion of the Wisdom Course, I told the group that I would combine the tools I learned from their courses with my own theological belief that with God all things are possible. This took the specific form of a promise to come back at the end of the following year’s class and juggle on a rope blindfolded. The idea was to do this with a minimal amount of physical practice, relying instead on my faith in God and the application of certain teachings from their courses.

    Here is a video (from the UBtheNEWS channel) of me performing this in May 2001.

    After this experience in May, I only practiced on the rope one other time before successfully doing this in December at the last Wisdom Course weekend of 2001. When I did for them, it was the first time I ever attempted doing it with people, rather than trees, holding the rope.

    Landmark Education instructors continually reinforce the point that their techniques are intended for people to apply to themselves (not others), unless it’s an agreed upon “coaching” relationship, as occurs when a person takes one of their courses. Obviously, no one has given you that kind of permission here. So, when I said, “Let’s not have Landmark Education nonsense about the past is in the past, Teuvo,” I figured you would know what I intended. Apparently, I was not sufficiently clear, and I apologize for being too casual in my remarks for you to follow my thoughts. I was hoping to help you avoid giving the type of response Andrew received.

    To Andrew you said, “I happen to disagree that it is not sufficient to say that some of these incidences happened in the past,” and “The past is the past and that’s that. I leave it there so the future is wide open for possibility.” This second quote is classic “Landmark-speak.” Your response shows an apparent preference for their teachings over those found in The Urantia Book. Given my experience with Landmark Education, I am sensitive to the way their training can be misused and feel a moral obligation to speak up in circumstances like this.

    To me you said: “Halbert Landmark Education is not nonsense and if you gave it a try you could become more affective in dealing with people in a kinder manner. Putting people down by calling them “incompetent” and “ignorant” speaks for itself to any follower of Jesus reading these threads.”

    Fairly applying standards for what one considers competent leadership is a social responsibility at the grassroots level. Your actions brought up the issue. If you have a different opinion about standards, you can say why yours is better and you meet the standard. If you think with you I’ve unfairly applied the standards I’d like to see exist, please point this out. You took my opinion about impersonal social standards for holding a leadership position (something that is reasonably done in political discussions all the time) and turned it into an excuse to attack me personally regarding my ability to live the religion of Jesus. It seems we have very different opinions of what “speaks for itself.”

    Additionally, you answered a question with a question when I asked you apply the “origin, history, and destiny” teaching in The Urantia Book to Anthony Delevin’s personality-based cult. I didn’t need to go to law school to see this as a transparent effort to avoid giving a thoughtful answer to an important and straightforward question. To me, this speaks for itself.

    Landmark Education instructors habitually reinforce the point that their techniques are amoral in nature. Like math, “you can use it to build a house or a bomb”; their techniques can be used in loving service or for selfish reasons. I hope you can start to see why from my perspective, especially given your leadership role within the Fellowship, I experience your communications as interpersonally aggressive, impolitely unresponsive, and hypocritically unkind.

  7. Tony seems to be a deluded cult leader-so be it; to what extent he is or he isn’t is not exactly clear. In the words of Teuvo, “From what I have read about his teachings some of the claims contradict the revelation and for me personally that doesn’t work.” Assuming at least this, my question is: how has it come to pass that such an evidently cool community has come to life, even having had origin in the leadership of someone who’s teaching ‘contradict the revelation’? It really does seem like a good thing is happening here, AND it seems that it has a had a questionable, if not deluded or worse, origin. Could this be the mysterious work of the Supreme? Maybe in some way He can work with a strong leader in error and cultivate something good? If all these people are reading the UB doesn’t seem inevitable that in time their errors will be corrected? If they are truly sincere? It is not my intention to excuse or condone any wrongdoing on the part of Tony Delevin, but to try to understand, whence comes all this evident goodness that Teuvo has recounted to us?

    1. I agree that you think that given enough time these people will realize that their leader is not the reincarnation of Martin Luther King and actually begin to look to the actual 5th epochal revelation. All we can do is hope and pray that happens. We can’t choose it for them, they have to choose it for themselves. There is really nothing we can do but provide quotes from the TUB on this site and others, and hopefully those truths force out the errors. One easy way to do this is research the TUB in regards to communal living. According to the authors communal living is backwards. So any prophet of the lord who is receiving instructions will see the truths behind this. Gabriel has made a book about how communal living is progressive. Even the master states that mens souls have never previously existed. I mean the contradictions are right there.

  8. Avalon Gardens AKA Global Community Communications Alliance indeed has some very kind-hearted, hard working, talented people living there. Many of whom I would still call a friend. However, I am willing to stick my neck out on this as well as lose my reputation there with the many whom I call friends, because my family and I, and many others have been put into harm by living and participating there. My family was sucked into this community from February 2016 to July 2016, its leadership requested our car, all of our belongings and then some as payment for our stay, then they proceeded to separate my husband from us by kicking him out of the community, although, he could have stayed if he had come up with $50,000. They cited to him that his correction was way beyond what their personality rehabilitation program could offer. I decided that we would remain in the community until something was worked out with my husband, because I did not know where I would go at that point; but I was devastated and could not understand what was happening. My daughter sent a letter to her grandparents and friends asking for them to rescue us. When this leadership discovered these letters, they kicked us out (3 children) and myself out to the curb. I had 36 hours to vacate, I was also directed to go live in a homeless shelter, in fact, they called all of the local shelters “on my behalf”. Tieyendae, Tony’s 2nd wife, visited with me before leaving, telling me that I should know that I am better than my husband, and that I should go home and deal with that and come back when he was not in my life. I was contacted about a week later by one of the other main leaders and founders, Niann Emerson Chase, Tony’s 1st wife, telling me it was my highest destiny to be there, only if I were to ditch my husband and oldest daughter first. This is not Godly, none of it is. This community is Delusional and definitely not on a path for the highest good of all.

    The Big Bad Wolf, is Tony, Gabriel of Urantia, dressed in Sage clothing. He is a con artist of the Highest Level, convincing everyone around him that He is The Ruler of the World. Do not give a Dime to this Community, Do not step foot in this community. Do not let the “outside” appearance, literature or websites lure you in. It is not what it seems….

    1. Kurtis A Switzer

      The leadership there are Money Mongering and will take everything from you and then some. If you call, you will most likely be put into contact with MaritaSeen or Centria and once you are living there, they will heat up the pressuring for you to give it all up for the Adjudicator and mandate, because of the extreme value they are offering people. Plus you are told you are in service to humanity while living there, but you are actually only in service to the Leaders, much like an indentured slave would be. They will work to appeal to those that feel like misfits in society, or those that are looking for community support. Once you are in, they will ask you for everything, even asking you to call all of your family and friends asking for money. I had a very broken relationship with my parents, and I was asked to call them anyway, and if I didn’t, it was because I was prideful. You will lose your life. It is so sad that they are parading such a beautiful concept and disguising it with such evil.

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