The Teachings of Jesus from the Perspective of Consciousness
And he said, “Whoever discovers the interpretations of these sayings will not taste death.” The Gospel of Thomas Verse 1
For years, I have not considered myself as a Christian. I kicked that baby to the curb when I was sixteen. The dogma did not ring true, so I left it behind. I have since traversed the land of Agnosticism, Sufism, Buddhism, Shamanism … and now find myself face-to-face with a new Truth, the mystical Truth at the foundation of all religions.
As we near Easter it is interesting to contemplate the mission of Jesus in a different light than what I have considered before—how it teaches me to expand my consciousness and join the Mind of Unity. I find it utterly fascinating to ponder this potential and see if it exists in the words of all the great Teachers.
With my current best understanding, the walk of Jesus was a pure teaching, even more pure than his words. He lived, literally lived here on earth with us, to teach us how to die to oneself and regain the truth of I Am. As we die to our needs and wants, all that we cling to falls away and we return to the clear state of childlike innocence. As this, we meet God, for only God exists.
The events of Holy Week are perfect analogies to awakening, enlightenment, to the possibility of waking up and finding ourselves literally in the lap of God. I see now that Jesus, beautifully and completely, taught and knew this to be true; but most importantly, he lived that reality.
What can I glean from his walk? First, Judas, a friend, betrayed Jesus, handing him to those who wanted to do him harm, and then the crowd who had the power to set him free, smote him further, choosing instead, to release a notorious prisoner into their midst.
How would that feel to me, the betrayal, the condemnation? The hurt is intense. It is a fiery blast, a powerfully demeaning insult. It drops me to my knees in humility and puts my previous experiences of exclusion into perspective. Jesus was excluded, he was not seen as worthy or laudable. With the exclusion, he was condemned to die. My need for another’s respect or approval seems like a small thing in comparison. Who wants the approval anyway—someone who hasn’t integrated the message, a self who has yet to die. Sitting here, so close to Easter, feeling what Jesus went through, strengthens the surge of energy that purges yesterday without effort when no me stops the flow.
His disciples abandoned him in fear for their own lives. In their fear, they cast aside his teachings and the teaching that was his life, the love he was and exemplified. They could not stand with or for him when it counted. He was the last man standing, carrying his cross up Calvary Hill, abandoned by everyone except for two women, Mother Mary and Mary Magdalene. I cannot imagine a worse possible scenario: able to make thunder clap and storms spill forth their lightning, innocent—pure Being of love, betrayed, abandoned, reviled, and rebuked; and he stayed with it, in it. He lived every moment of it. He taught through his path. He taught us to let go of everything, everyone, every need, every wish for comfort, even the wish for life, and simply be present to our life. He was the walking, living, breathing message.
Jesus knew something else, something I only recently learned. He did not judge the people who condemned him. He did not judge his disciples for scurrying away. He did not even judge his executioners.
His only words were, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.”
He knew that if they could do something differently, they would have, and they did not, so they could not. They had not yet gained his understanding. His teachings had not fully engaged their cores and expanded the consciousness beyond the self. They saw his words as testament to his power, as proof of his divinity, not as an invitation to do and be the same. Their veil over their consciousness had yet to lift to the heavens. His death set them free of idolatry, free of a teacher and the concept of student, and was the final teaching.
So what does that mean for me? Do the people who irritate me know any better? I used to think there had to be more depth. I believed that those who did not connect with me in real, meaningful ways were hiding from me, or worse, from themselves. I did not know what Jesus knew. I did not realize that until they met the circumstances that would change them (and that might or might not happen in this lifetime), there was no more depth to be found, for they were younger souls. The depth of understanding, the ability to realize things of a higher nature, simply did not exist. They were exactly who they were. I could stop unconsciously asking, “How dare you be so young.” Seeing it put into words, makes it seems so silly.
Knowing this, I relax. I am freer than ever before.
And what about the resurrection? Was it too an analogy for something else? Was it real? My understanding is yes, and yes. Yes. It happened. Yes. Death did not claim the man Jesus who laid in the tomb those three days. Yes. This is a great joy to celebrate. And, yes … it is an analogy shot from the bow of Love straight into the heart of each one of us. Death does not exist. It cannot claim Jesus. It cannot and will not claim any one of us. Jesus showed us what is possible for us, that we can overcome the ideas of death as we fully enter into death’s shadow and die before we die, letting all the ideas of life and living, fall away. Jesus showed us that death is a lie. He showed us that we do not have to believe the lie. We do not have to don the old ideas of a brittle, unforgiving world. We can re-animate a body that has experienced this plane’s death process. There is nothing we are not capable of when we empty of the small self’s fantasies to reveal what has always been present, the spirit—God.
I think Jesus is ecstatically happy that so many of us are awakening to the truth behind his teachings, that we are moving beyond the God—human hierarchy that formed when the messengers were not quite caught up to the message. There is nothing wrong with that, in fact, something quite exquisite about its perfection. For each of us is the disciple. Each of us is moving through the words into the reality of the higher consciousness Jesus lived and loved as. Each of us faces the death of the disconnected, individuated self. The message transforms us, blows us into infinity and recreates within each unique expression the kingdom of heaven, the full-body, mind and spirit, reintegration of God.
His followers said to him, “When will the kingdom come?”
“It will not come by watching for it. It will not be said, ‘Look, here it is.’ Or ‘Look, there it is.’ Rather, the father’s kingdom is spread out upon the earth, and people do not see it.” The Gospel of Thomas, Verse 113