JESUS’ BEST KEPT SECRET

In the East,
They paint images of water lilies
Rising up out of bottom mud
Through dark water
To a breezy surface –
Where they blossom in beauty.

Who could imagine such natural elegance rising up out of mud –
One of nature’s more ecstatic surprises.

In the West,
Jesus taught we could be “born again”
And then was hung up to die.

Repeatedly, though, throughout his life he rose up out of himself –
Flowering as a “new type” of human being.

People felt awe at this, and reacted according to their individual character –
Those bending towards hope, followed him with joy,
While those responding out of fear or anger, simply disappeared.

Through Jesus, the world was exposed to a paradox –
That is, whether it’s actually possible to extinguish a “next-stage” human spirit –

The authorities learned, in their attempt to kill off this late-Axial Age spiritual dimension,
That their best efforts ended up only certifying Jesus
As an evolutionarily new human paradigm.

In fact, this turned out to be a variation of an old, old story –
Winning by losing –

Jesus’ best kept secret.

GOD’S “FACE”

The Old Testament asserts that we cannot “see” God’s face and live. (Exodus 33:20)

Paul, in the New Testament, however, says: “For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully even as I am fully known.” 1 Cor.13:12

How resolve this inter-testamental paradox?

I think the Old Testament was talking about “egos” – false selves that “die,” that is, become extinguished in any “direct” encounter with God. The New Testament, on the other hand, is talking about human beings who’ve been “born again” spiritually – when it becomes possible for a human spirit to actually engage with God’s Spirit directly because, qualitatively, and at the right place and right time, the two can overlap.

Even the briefest glimpse of God gets us “soaked” by Joy –

If God is Love, then, when we’re loving, even if only for a moment,
That’s when we experience God –
Not as a matter of belief, but of lived life.

Love is the aspect of God that resides inside us (Immanent) while Truth is the aspect of God that’s found outside us (Transcendent).

Experiencing the joy of God as a holy fountain inside us –
While having faith in a transcendent God
Who gifts us with significance, context, and meaning –

Turns out to be Heaven for most human beings!

PERPETUALLY SURPRISED

“Love” works like a magical pair of glasses.

Before you put them on – spiritually, you can’t see a thing
But when you place them astride your nose
And look directly through their clear lenses –
You’ll “see” what God sees.

When you put these glasses on,
You’ll immediately be changed into a new person –
Transfigured, like Jesus,
Into someone “born again” –
Able to see the world like a new-born baby
While still retaining all your lifetime experiences.

Really, if you want to “see” just like God does –
Put on these special “love” glasses –

And get prepared to be perpetually surprised!

THE NATURAL TRASH COLLECTOR

The ego is a natural trash collector –
As soon as it feels any space opening up
It immediately refills itself – generally with some new species of “trash” –
And that’s why there’s never any room for God or one’s “true self.”

The most elevated spiritual path ever discovered by mystics was “emptying out” –
Literally, “everything” has got to go! – especially all one’s favorite treasures.

So, after all the work and time spent cleaning out our ego-self,
What’ll be left is “no-thing”
Which provides us with the space to be “born again”
Which also provides us with space for reality to enter our lives –

In other words, room for God to be welcome in our hearts.

SPIRITUALLY, DOES CHRISTIANITY STILL MAKE SENSE?

Jesus knew everything, spiritually, about being “born again” himself –
But, unfortunately, the Christians who came after him
Never became interested in their own “true selves”
Into which they could be born again (like Jesus) –
And live a life parallel to God.

Even though Jesus believed God was “Spirit,”
Christianity was founded, in large part, upon “spiritual materialism” –
Because that requires an external “savior” – in this case, Jesus himself –

This understanding of human beings as objects that need to be saved
Was in stark contrast to Jesus’ understanding of human beings as subjects
With an inherent ability to save themselves
By spiritually being “born again” into their “true selves.”

LITTLE ONE

Almost seven and one-half billion people are waiting for you
Little one –
Humanity’s morning star.

Are you, even now, a small child now running around in the grass and trees
Of Brazil, Argentina, or Peru –
Thinking about God
In your pure child’s mind?

As “the purest girl in the world”
You’ll be able to see reality – in other words, “God” –
You’ll “taste” love; hear the truth; and smell justice with your little nose –
Everything will come easy for your quicksilver mind
And no one will pass you on the street without noticing your intense beauty –
Your parents already aware of what a treasure you are.

Little one, we don’t ask too much –
Just tell us what God looks like through your clear eyes
And what God is whispering in your secret dreams.

You’ll have the confidence of the angels surrounding God’s throne
And be “born again” an infinite numbers of times – even as a child –
As many births as the number of stars in the sky twinkling in your dark hair –
Jesus, Buddha, and Mohammed will all be in awe of you
Since you’ll embody Love, Truth, Justice, and Beauty –
A young South American woman as a true reflection of God.

Yes, God will soon send us “the purest-hearted girl in the world” –
To be the true Avatar for our age –
And who’ll explain everything to us,
Including how to get back to “Eden” – back before we developed egos –
Where it all began –
Back when we were still our “true selves.”

TEARS OF JOY

Evangelical Christians talk about being “born again” –
As if it’s easy.

And that suffering and dying are nothing more than just saying the words
“Jesus Christ.”

But this is all a sham.

Suffering and dying are very difficult –
As Jesus so graphically demonstrated.

But that’s what it costs –

Dying, to make way for the birth
Of the kind of people God meant for all of us to be –

Pretty much everything in the ancient world had to be destroyed
To make room for that.

It’s the same for each one of us – it won’t be easy –
Giving up and
Starting all over again –

Arriving straight out of a spiritual womb
Into a sky we’ve never experienced before.

At birth, everyone starts crying,
You, your friends, the entire world – everyone –

Tears of joy.

COURAGE IN THE FLOW

We earn the title of “human being” when we’re able to live out values
Higher than our everyday concerns –

Some examples are:
Love, truth, justice, beauty,
And “Good” – an alternative word for “God.”

Before enlightment, if and when that ever happens,
Each choice we make will be determined by our earlier unconscious choices –
Made without self-reflective thinking –

But to live “in the moment” – like God does –
We need the same inner freedom that God exhibits.

In order to accomplish that, however – we’ll need to shake off our elaborate egos
And ersatz societal roles –
And become free enough to resurrect our original true self.

It’s not sexuality that our predecessors, Adam and Eve, wanted to cover up –
It was their “self-made” artificial reality –
Which can only be changed by gaining the ability to see the world through God’s eyes.

Christianity, in order to justify itself, has promoted a misleading standard for all humanity –
“Perfection” –
But, after all, even God isn’t perfect in a mathematical or abstract sense –
Because God is alive

Like nature – just on a higher level.

So, to condemn ourselves as sinful because we haven’t achieved “perfection”
Is irrational
Because we aren’t –
And never will be.

One day, however, we might decide to be “born again” – like Jesus recommended –
And, as a consequence, be able to experience full reality –

The same as God –

After which, hopefully, we’ll start making intelligent-loving decisions,
Discovering all it took was

Courage in the flow –

That’s all –

Just a little courage
In the flow.

BORN AGAIN

“I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” John 3:3

Christianity teaches that Jesus was referring to salvation based upon a belief in him.

But Jesus was actually talking about being born “into the Spirit” – not about a commitment to himself.

So, what does it mean for one to be born “into the Spirit”?

I think, first, this requires a determination of the meaning of one’s “self.”

Each of us is born as a “true self” – but, at this moment in history, a “true self” probably wouldn’t be able to survive past his or her childhood. That’s why a person, while still young, accepts the substitution of an “ego” or false self in place of their true self – so that they can successfully integrate their “self” into the world – i.e., with their parents, community, and surrounding culture, including their nation and religion. This successor “self,” in most cases, takes the form of the strong and healthy ego that Freud described.

But what are the costs of living through an “ego” self, no matter how successful it may be in the world?

Think about consciousness as an open circle. Then picture the part accessible to the ego as a very thin slice – maybe 10% – 20%. From early childhood on, that’s the part of ourselves we choose to live within – with all our experiences needing to fit within that narrow slice or be excluded. Excluded how? The ego self requires, as the price of an effective existence, that each and every experience outside the scope of its chosen roles be methodically and ruthlessly pushed back into the unconscious – sealing those experiences off from our consciousness.

So, what happens when we’re “born again”? Upon being born again, we gain access to all our consciousness – all 360 degrees of it – and are able to experience full reality. We become completely “free” and totally open to all our experiences – just like when we first came into the world as a newborn baby – but we also retain all the experience and knowledge of the person we had become by the time we were “reborn.” This rebirth, however, doesn’t happen to an ego – it only happens when we’re able to break free of the ego we had earlier accepted – and start living outside it. That’s what Zen training, for example, prepares us for – to get “outside yourself” in order to become “free of your ego.” This is essentially the same path which Jesus taught – that we need to be “born again” in order to become our “true self” – the self God originally provided us with.

Once you become your true self, you’ll enter “Heaven” – and no longer be creating karmic problems in this world. That’s because you’ll be experiencing everything clearly – by being able to see yourself at the same time as you’re participating in the world – by an ability to stand “outside” yourself. This makes it possible for you to see what God wants you to do in any given situation – just like Jesus was able to – allowing you to act the same as God would act if God were a human being like yourself.

Let me say this as simply as possible – once you find your “true self,” you won’t be Jesus, but you’ll have become someone like Jesus – because you’ll have done what he recommended – spiritually, you’ll be “born again.”

All the “Angels in Heaven” start singing when this happens –

or perhaps,

You’ll simply be able to hear the angels who’re always singing – once you’ve gained the “ears to hear” that everyone receives upon being “born again.”

MOMENT BY MOMENT

When Jesus counseled us
To be “born again”
He didn’t mean just once –

Because it doesn’t take long
For a new self to freeze
Into a mask.

What he was saying –
Since God is absolutely free,
We, also, need to be.

Each moment should be experienced as a new birth,
So that our prior selves do not have the power
To bind us back into the past.

Love won’t arrive through habit or rote –
It always needs to be free!

That’s why, as we grow older and gain greater experience,
Jesus wants us, simultaneously, to spiritually regress –
Not just back to when we were a child –
But all the way back to when we were newborn
Where the subjective world begins again –

All our lifelong experience
Joined to the bud of birth –

A life occurring afresh –

Moment by moment.