From The Great Gift - 1976.
My own understanding is that the
Creator, who is also God, is self sufficient in a sense. That is to imply
that, although we need God, in every meaning of that term, God does not
need us in the same way.
Against this we have
to set the understanding that if God didn’t have a purpose which included
us, no doubt He would not have gone to all this trouble of bringing us
But to have a purpose in which we can play some part is
quite a different thing from having an absolute need of us in the way
that we have an absolute need of God.
In the way that a
child needs its mother and father, we need God for sustenance and support
of our own reality because our own reality rests upon the reality of God,
and all our sustenance comes from that reality.
But in quite a different
way, I believe, our God wishes us to come to life, to come to a full expression
of our potential, our Divine reality, and that must be for a purpose which
is not essential to the Being of the Creator, but which may be essential
to a particular longing and delight in the heart of the understanding
of that Creator.
In simple words,
I think that the Creator wishes to have other individual divine Beings
who can be His friends with whom He can share the content of His own reality,
with whom He can enter into conversation, understanding and discussion
about possible experiments in living, in trying to go beyond the understanding
that God has already, which to us, at our stage of development, seems
infinite, but this is obviously only a relative term, and is not infinite
to the Creator’s possible understanding.
I believe that it
is in the nature of all healthy spirits, all healthy individuals, to want
to achieve spiritual goals. And those goals, when we look at them closely,
are always goals which are impossibly difficult to reach.
They are goals
which are endless goals; they are goals which are concerned with the ultimate
perception of the most valuable and beautiful things which, when we reach
them, will only incline us to look for more beautiful and more valuable
Therefore I think
the Creator wishes to have friends, not only to share the delights of
friendship with, but also friends who will help Him with the sort of exploration,
the sort of experimental living out of life, which will enable us all
to stumble upon new potentialities within that reality which we call the
Absolute Divine Nature.
We can suggest that
the Creator is aware that there are potentialities in nature which have
not yet been fully actualised.
He also realises that He needs other beings
to help Him to permutate, as it were, all the possibilities of the potentialities
in that nature.
That is why He wishes to share His nature with us, and
give us a nature similar to His own as an outright gift for us to use
in our own way; so that each of us actualises it in a uniquely different
My feeling is that Bill Arkle was making an extremely important point here. Something of potentially great value to all Christians - but perhaps especially Mormons.
That while on the one had God does not need for there to be Men, he very much wants for there to be Men; and that this desire is partly the desire for Children, and beyond that the desire for (adult) friends; and even beyond that - that Men have the potential actually to assist in the divine plan: that God can achieve things with the help of Men that could not be achieved (so well ) otherwise.
This implies that the creation and salvation of Man was not a gratuitous act; but part of a plan - a multi-phase and indeed infinite plan which is, in its bottom-line and ultimate nature - about society, about relationships, about love.
Ultimate reality is a personal-y thing; not a physics-y thing.