A prominent lightworker has surprised me by implying that only Christians can be the recipients of grace. He recently wrote, in part: “None of the denominations (1) matters. The Lord only sees Christians and Non- Christians!”
Is it true? Does the Lord see only Christians and non-Christians?
My impression is that the Lord doesn’t see religious faiths as being separate at all or one better than the other. It’s only we who do.
I asked the question of Jesus on An Hour with an Angel in December 2011. The belief that only Christians matter comes primarily from Jesus having said “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (2) But did Jesus mean “I Jesus”?
Steve Beckow: One of the teachings of yours that I think may have been misunderstood is the saying, ‘I am the truth, the way and the life.’ Did you mean, ‘I, Jesus,’ as has been interpreted by the Church, or did you mean something else, Lord?
Jesus: It was much bigger than any church or ‘ism.’ And yes, I have said, many, many things have been misunderstood or misquoted. But that is all right. When I have used the term ‘I am,’ I was aligning with All, with Source, with Father/Mother One. That is the alignment. And if you, Steve, or listeners, say, ‘I am the truth,’ then you have aligned with that, and you have become that. (3)
If Jesus himself has removed the basis for thinking that only believers on him can be the recipients of grace, how can we as lightworkers perpetuate it?
The “I am” can be interpreted as the Self or All-Self, the Source of all existence. So Jesus is saying that the Self is the only way to the Source. That gives rise to the many statements that we must know ourselves to know God.
Here are some of those statements:
Sri Yukteswar Giri
“The highest aim of religion is … Self-knowledge.” (4)
“To know God is not an easy matter, until one becomes a knower of one’s self.” (5)
“Knowledge of self is the key to knowledge of God, according to the saying: ‘He who knows himself knows God.’” (6)
“Without first knowing yourself, how can you know that which is true? Illusion is inevitable without self-knowledge.” (7)
St. Catherine of Genoa
“My Me is God, nor do I recognize any other Me except my God Himself.” (8)
We speak of enlightenment as Self-Realization, the attainment of the Supreme Self. It’s this “Self” that is God that Jesus was referring to.
If we really want to know who the Christ is, perhaps listen to mystic John Ruusbroec describe it:
“In this darkness an incomprehensible light is born and shines forth; this is the Son of God in whom a person becomes able to see and contemplate eternal life.” (9)
“It is Christ [the Son, the Self, the Atman], the light of truth, who says, ‘See,’ and it is through him that we are able to see, for he is the light of the Father [the All-Self, Brahman], without which there is no light in heaven or on earth.” (10)
This light of the Self is the Christ, which Hindus call the Atman and Buddhists our Buddha nature.
This is a time of religious reunification. It’s a time to recover the Perennial Philosophy or Ancient Wisdom at the basis of all the world’s religions. The Perennial Philosophy is simply the truth of Reality, shorn of all dogma.
It’s time to let go of all schemes that see true believers and infidels, members of the tribe and goyim, believers and non-believers. None of this contains a whit of truth and has stood in the way of the development of civilization on this planet for millennia.
It’s time to emerge from the childhood of humanity and be adult enough to see that we were wrong in all our religious divisiveness and it cost us plenty. God loves all sides, equally. Anyone can reach God who puts sincere effort into it.
As Sri Ramakrishna said: “All will surely realize God. All will be liberated. It may be that some get their meal in the morning, some at noon, and some in the evening; but none will go without food. All, without any exception, will certainly know the real Self.” (11)
God makes no distinctions among his creations. Only we do. And now, having brought ourselves so much pain and misery with the distinctions we’ve made, surely it’s time to stop.
(1) I presume denominations such as Catholic and Protestant or Presbyterian, Anglican, Baptist, Lutheran, etc.
(2) John 14:6.
(3) “Transcript of Interview with Jesus on Biblical Mysteries, Dec. 19, 2011,” Dec. 21, 2011, at http://goldenageofgaia.com/2011/12/transcript-of-interview-with-jesus-on-biblical-mysteries-dec-1-2011/.
(4) Sri Yukteswar Giri, The Holy Science. Los Angeles: Self-Realization Fellowship, 1984, 6.
(5) Muhyidden Ibn Arabi, Kernel of the Kernel. trans. Ismail Hakki Bursevi. Sherborne: Beshara, n.d., 3.
(6) Al-Ghazzali, The Alchemy of Happiness. trans. Claud Field. Lahore: ASHRAF, 1971; c1964 19.
(7) J. Krishnamurti, Commentaries on Living. First Series. Bombay, etc.: B.I. Publications, 1972; c1974, 1, 20.
(8) St Catherine of Genoa in Aldous Huxley, The Perennial Philosophy. New York, etc.: Harper and Row, 1970; c1944, 11.
(9) John Ruusbroec in James A. Wiseman, John Ruusbroec. The Spiritual Espousals and Other Works. New York, etc.: Paulist Press, 1985, 22.
(10) John Ruusbroec in JR, 74.
(11) Swami Nikhilananda, trans., The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna. New York: Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1978; c1942, 818.