The Urantia Book
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A Synopsis of Paper 68: The Dawn of Civilization

Civilization is a human acquirement; it is not biologically inherent. Its scientific, philosophic and religious qualities are transmitted from one generation to the next only by enlightened conservation.

Cooperation is not a natural human trait. It was first introduced by the Dalamatia teachers, who nurtured man in the idea of group activities for three hundred thousand years. Early men soon learned to appreciate the strength of union. They developed group associations primarily for survival reasons; civilization provided insurance against violent death. Hunger, sex, and fear were additional influences that prompted association between humans.

The family, the first successful group, satisfied the sex urge in males and maternal devotion in females. Women maintained settled homes where they could cultivate food. Men and women learned to adjust their antagonisms to ensure the survival of the species.

The greatest single factor in the evolution of human society was the ghost dream. Early people were afraid of dreams, and dread of the departed dead gave them special terror. Their senseless superstitions caused them to band tightly together for protection. Until the Dalamatia teachers came with their liberating instructions, every activity people engaged in was prescribed by their mores and ceremonies.

Urantia has had four stages of civilization. Early men sustained themselves by gleaning food from the land. The invention of tools made hunting for food possible; learning to cure meat was a forward step during the hunting era. Further liberation occurred during the pastoral stage, when the domestication of animals gave humans more time to devote to culture and progress. The highest type of material civilization was brought about through the cultivation of plants-horticulture.

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