- Original Christianity - The Aquarian Gospel for Awakening - Chapter One Hundred Nineteen

Chapter One Hundred Nineteen

Hoffman's portrait of ChristPart 131 of the Aquarian Gospel for Awakening

The news soon spread through all the land that Jesus was at home and then the people came in throngs to welcome him.

And Matthew, one of the twelve, a man of wealth, whose home was in Capernaum, spread forth a sumptuous feast, and Jesus and the foreign masters and the twelve, and people of all shades of thought, were guests. And when the Pharisees observed that Jesus sat and ate with publicans and those of ill repute they said, For shame! This man who claims to be man of God, consorts with publicans and courtesans and with the common herd of men. For shame!

When Jesus knew their thoughts he said, They who are well cannot be healed; the pure need not be saved. They who are well are whole; they who are pure are saved. They who love justice and do right need not repent; I came not unto them, but to the sinner I am come. (Aquarian Gospel 119:1-7)

Just as a drunk, as he staggers along, often stops and sways as he looks at others who are sober and slurs: “You are drunk,” in the same way the hypocrites riddled with secret vices are always seeing the virtuous as evildoers and proclaiming them so. This is worse in the realm of religion than anywhere else.

Jesus could read the hearts of everyone, and he knew who could be touched by contact with him and enabled to turn from darkness to the light. So no matter what their present state was he freely associated with them and shepherded them into the ways of God. But the smug and self-satisfied hypocrites he avoided, so they were insulted and continually accused him publicly.

One time a resident of the Anandamayi Ashram in Varanasi was very disruptive and offensive to everyone else living there. So the next time Anandamayi Ma came to Varanasi all the ashramites complained to her vociferously about the man, who was present. Ma asked him to come over to her. When he did so, she leaned forward, embraced him and said: “When no one else wants you, how could I send you away?” And that was the end of his bad behavior.

Once when there was a festival in the same ashram an alcoholic attended, resolving not to touch alcohol the whole time. But his addiction was raging and he decided that he must go out and find some alcoholic drink. At that very moment someone knocked at his door. When he opened it he found one of Ma Anandamayi’s most respected devotees standing there. The devotee, who was a strict Brahmin that considered even touching a container of alcohol drink to be ritually defiling, handed him a bottle of whisky saying: “Ma sent me to buy this and bring it to you.” Naturally the man was in shock. When he realized that out of love for him both Ma and this man were violating fundamental principles (for Ma also was a Brahmin of the strictest order) and exposing themselves to ridicule and censure, he was so moved that never again did he drink alcohol.

Such is the healing power of love and mercy, as Jesus well knew. Another time a man came to the Varanasi ashram and began complaining about several of the residents. Finally Ma quietly said to him: “An ashram is a hospital for the spiritually sick. If you are not sick yourself, then you need not come here.” He definitely got the idea.

A band of John’s disciples who had heard that John was dead were wearing badges for their dead; were fasting and were praying in their hearts, which when the Pharisees observed they came to Jesus and they said, Why fast the followers of John and your disciples do not fast? And Jesus said, Lo, you are masters of the law; you ought to know; perhaps you will make known your knowledge to these men. What are the benefits derived from fasts? The Pharisees were mute; they answered not. (Aquarian Gospel 119:8-12)

This is very significant, for it contradicts the standard Gospels. Jesus is challenging the value of fasting, not saying that when he departs from this world his disciples will become fasters (Matthew 9:14, 15) perpetually. Nor does he seem to consider that fasting gives one powers over evil spirits (Matthew 17:14-21). Of course the reader must decide which he accepts as authentic.

Then Jesus said, The vital force of men depends on what they eat and drink. Is spirit-life the stronger when the vital force is weak? Is sainthood reached by starving, self imposed? A glutton is a sinner in the sight of God, and he is not a saint who makes himself a weakling and unfitted for the heavy tasks of life by scorning to make use of God’s own means of strength.

Lo, John is dead, and his devoted followers are fasting in their grief. Their love for him impels them on to show respect, for they have thought, and have been taught that it is sin to lightly treat the memory of the dead. To them it is a sin, and it is well that they should fast. (Aquarian Gospel 119:13-18)

In the Bhagavad Gita it is said: “You may know these men to be of demonic nature who mortify the body excessively, in ways not prescribed by the scriptures. They do this because their lust and attachment to sense-objects has filled them with egotism and vanity. In their foolishness, they weaken all their sense-organs, and outrage me, the dweller within the body” (Bhagavad Gita 17:5, 6). Jesus is saying the same. However, abstinence from food is good when a person is suffering from grief or loss, because at such times the chemistry of the stomach renders toxic any food eaten. Then it is natural to have no appetite. But such fasting is in honor of someone or some situation, but mere fasting has absolutely no value as a spiritual discipline meant to elevate the consciousness. This is the right perspective Jesus presents.

When men defy their consciences and listen not to what they say, the heart is grieved and they become unfitted for the work of life; and thus they sin.

The conscience may be taught. One man may do in conscience what another cannot do. What is a sin for me to do may not be sin for you to do. The place you occupy upon the way of life determines what is sin.

There is no changeless law of good; for good and evil both are judged by other things. One man may fast and in his deep sincerity of heart is blest. Another man may fast and in the faithlessness of such a task imposed is cursed.

You cannot make a bed to fit the form of every man. If you can make a bed to fit yourself you have done well.

Why should these men who follow me resort to fasting, or to anything that would impair their strength? They need it all to serve the race.

The time will come when God will let you have your way, and you will do to me what Herod did to John; and in the awfulness of that sad hour these men will fast.

They who have ears to hear may hear; they who have hearts to feel may understand. (Aquarian Gospel 119:19-29)

When men defy their consciences and listen not to what they say, the heart is grieved and they become unfitted for the work of life; and thus they sin. “To him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin” (James 4:17). It is also true that if a person sincerely believes that a harmless thing is a sin and yet does it in defiance because of desire or some other influence, that person does wrong, not by the overt act but by the negative disposition of the heart. For example, I knew a man who as a child was taught that it was a sin to ride a bicycle on Sunday. Of course it was not, but he truly did believe it was a sin. Therefore when he surreptitiously took his bicycle and rode it, the mere riding was no sin, but the disposition of his heart was sinful. This is a most important principle to understand. We must try to have the perspective of God, “for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart” (I Samuel 16:7).

The conscience may be taught. One man may do in conscience what another cannot do. What is a sin for me to do may not be sin for you to do. The place you occupy upon the way of life determines what is sin. This last sentence embodies the principle of swadharma as found in the Bhagavad Gita. “It is better to do your own duty [swadharma], however imperfectly, than to assume the duties of another person, however successfully. Prefer to die doing your own duty: the duty of another will bring you into great spiritual danger” (Bhagavad Gita 3:35).

There is no changeless law of good; for good and evil both are judged by other things. One man may fast and in his deep sincerity of heart is blest. Another man may fast and in the faithlessness of such a task imposed is cursed. This is not “situation ethics.” This is ethics according to an individual’s profound personal makeup, not according to society or environment. It is crucial for this to be understood.

You cannot make a bed to fit the form of every man. If you can make a bed to fit yourself you have done well. We need not figure out what other people should or should not do. Rather we must determine our own swadharma and follow it. Then we shall have done very well indeed.

Why should these men who follow me resort to fasting, or to anything that would impair their strength? They need it all to serve the race. Indeed so. Further, a knowledge of real, interior life takes care of the mind and heart. Essentially, those who do not know yoga have very little chance of spiritual success to any marked degree.

The time will come when God will let you have your way, and you will do to me what Herod did to John; and in the awfulness of that sad hour these men will fast. This indicates the appropriate times for fasting, but overindulgence in mourning is itself a wrong.

They who have ears to hear may hear; they who have hearts to feel may understand. Here it all is. Even Jesus can do nothing with the deaf and the heartless.

Read the next section in the Aquarian Gospel for Yogis

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The Aquarian Gospel—Commentary and Text

The Aquarian Gospel for Awakening—A Commentary on the Aquarian Gospel
by Abbot George Burke (Swami Nirmalananda Giri)

  1. The Mother of Jesus
  2. Prophecies of the Births of Saint John the Baptist and Jesus
  3. The Birth of Jesus
  4. Revelations in the Temple
  5. Coming of the Wise Men
  6. Herod’s Reaction
  7. Revelations in Egypt
  8. The Two Selfs
  9. Deliverance From Gods and Demons
  10. About God the Tao
  11. From India to Chaldea
  12. The Wisdom of Buddha
  13. God and Prayer
  14. The Mission of Jesus and John the Baptist
  15. Sin and the Forgiveness of Sin
  16. The Universal Law of Man’s Free Will and the Divine Will For Man
  17. Understanding Death
  18. The True Teacher
  19. The Value of Ritual
  20. The Law Behind All Laws
  21. Opening To The Truth
  22. In the Temple at the Age of Ten
  23. Revelation to the Teachers and People in the Temple
  24. Jerusalem to Nazareth
  25. Nazareth to India
  26. What is Truth?
  27. What Is Man?
  28. What is Power?
  29. Understanding
  30. Wisdom
  31. Faith
  32. Healing and Healers
  33. Conflict Over Caste
  34. The Destiny of All Men
  35. God and Man
  36. The Voice in the Heart
  37. Seeing the Unseeable
  38. To God Through Man
  39. Who Is Jesus?
  40. The Real Versus The Apparent
  41. The Brotherhood of Life
  42. God…and Man
  43. Relating To God
  44. The Worthy Host
  45. Come to the Light
  46. The Kingdom Revealed
  47. The King Revealed
  48. Perspective On Death
  49. Fire and Sword
  50. Evolution: The Path of Glory
  51. The Real Heaven
  52. Getting to the Essence
  53. New Perspective on Religion
  54. In Tibet and Ladakh
  55. Words to the Worthy
  56. The Thirty-Eighth Chapter
  57. The Origin of Evil
  58. The Silence
  59. The Source of Healing
  60. The Fivefold Gospel
  61. Homecoming
  62. In Athens
  63. The Oracle of Delphi
  64. The Real God
  65. Return to Egypt
  66. First Steps to Wisdom
  67. Strong in Will and Intent
  68. Here Comes the Ego
  69. Blessed are the Merciful
  70. Claiming Our Freedom
  71. The Great Test
  72. Comprehending Death
  73. The Christ!
  74. The Asembly of the Masters
  75. The Seven Pillars of the Aquarian Age – I
  76. The Seven Pillars of the Aquarian Age – II
  77. The Declaration of Jesus
  78. John the Baptist – I
  79. John the Baptist – II
  80. John the Baptist – III
  81. Baptism – Jesus and John
  82. Self-Examination and Temptation
  83. The First Disciples Follow Jesus
  84. Jesus’ First Sermon
  85. The King and the Kingdom
  86. Dealing With Challengers
  87. The First Miracle of Jesus
  88. Kings and Kingdoms
  89. The Temple of God
  90. What Is A Messiah?
  91. The Laws of Healing
  92. Nicodemus Finds The Kingdom
  93. The Prince of Peace
  94. Dealing With Spiritual Opposition
  95. The Opened Gate
  96. John the Baptist Speaks of the Christ
  97. John Speaks Further About Jesus
  98. The Woman at the Well
  99. The Disciples and Samaritans at the Well
  100. Jesus in Sychar
  101. More Wisdom In Samaria
  102. The Imprisonment of John the Baptist
  103. In Jerusalem
  104. The Insights of Jesus
  105. Sabbath Wisdom
  106. Prayer and Good Deeds
  107. Divine Laws and Principles for Seekers of the Divine
  108. A New Understanding of the Ten Commandments
  109. Aspects of the Higher Law – 1
  110. Aspects of the Higher Law – 2
  111. Aspects of the Higher Law – 3
  112. Aspects of the Higher Law – 4
  113. Chapter One Hundred One
  114. Chapter One Hundred Two
  115. Chapter One Hundred Three
  116. Chapter One Hundred Four
  117. Chapter One Hundred Five
  118. Chapter One Hundred Six
  119. Chapter One Hundred Seven
  120. Chapter One Hundred Eight
  121. Chapter One Hundred Nine
  122. Chapter One Hundred Ten
  123. Chapter One Hundred Eleven
  124. Chapter One Hundred Twelve
  125. Chapter One Hundred Thirteen
  126. Chapter One Hundred Fourteen
  127. Chapter One Hundred Fifteen
  128. Chapter One Hundred Sixteen
  129. Chapter One Hundred Seventeen
  130. Chapter One Hundred Eighteen
  131. Chapter One Hundred Nineteen
  132. Chapter One Hundred Twenty
  133. Chapter One Hundred Twenty One
  134. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Two
  135. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Three
  136. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Four
  137. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Five
  138. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Six
  139. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Seven
  140. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Eight
  141. Chapter One Hundred Twenty Nine
  142. Chapter One Hundred Thirty
  143. Chapter One Hundred Thirty One
  144. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Two
  145. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Three
  146. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Four
  147. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Five
  148. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Six
  149. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Seven
  150. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Eight
  151. Chapter One Hundred Thirty Nine
  152. Chapter One Hundred Forty
  153. Chapter One Hundred Forty One
  154. Chapter One Hundred Forty Two
  155. Chapter One Hundred Forty Three
  156. Chapter One Hundred Forty Four
  157. Chapter One Hundred Forty Five
  158. Chapter One Hundred Forty Six
  159. Chapter One Hundred Forty Seven
  160. Chapter One Hundred Forty Eight
  161. Chapter One Hundred Forty Nine
  162. Chapter One Hundred Fifty
  163. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-One
  164. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Two
  165. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Three
  166. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Four
  167. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Five
  168. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Six
  169. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Seven
  170. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Eight
  171. Chapter One Hundred Fifty-Nine
  172. Chapter One Hundred Sixty
  173. Chapter One Hundred Sixty One
  174. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Two
  175. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Three
  176. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Four
  177. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Five
  178. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Six
  179. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Seven
  180. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Eight
  181. Chapter One Hundred Sixty Nine
  182. Chapter One Hundred Seventy
  183. Chapter One Hundred Seventy One
  184. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Two
  185. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Three
  186. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Four
  187. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Five
  188. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Six
  189. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Seven
  190. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Eight
  191. Chapter One Hundred Seventy Nine
  192. Chapter One Hundred Eighty
  193. Chapter One Hundred Eighty One
  194. Chapter One Hundred Eighty Two

The Text of the Aquarian Gospel—by Levi Dowling

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