On Thursday morning Jesus called to him the twelve disciples, and he said to them, This is God’s remembrance day, and we will eat the paschal supper all alone.
And then he said to Peter, James and John, Go now into Jerusalem and there prepare the pasch. And the disciples said, Where would you have us go to find the place where we may have the feast prepared? And Jesus said, Go by the fountain gate and you will see a man who has a pitcher in his hand. Speak unto him and say: This is the first day of unleavened bread; the Lord would have you set apart your banquet hall where he may eat his last Passover with the twelve. Fear not to speak; the man whom you will see is Nicodemus, ruler of the Jews, and yet a man of God. And the disciples went and found the man as Jesus said, and Nicodemus hastened to his home; the banquet hall, an upper room, was set apart, the supper was prepared.
Now, in the afternoon the Lord and his disciples went up to Jerusalem and found the feast in readiness. And when the hour had come to eat the feast, the twelve began to strive among themselves, each anxious to secure the honored seats. And Jesus said, My friends, would you contend for self just as the shadow of this night of gloom comes on? There is no honored seat at heaven’s feast except for him who humbly takes the lowest seat.
And then the Lord arose and took a basin full of water and a towel, and bowing down, he washed the feet of all the twelve and dried them with the towel. He breathed upon them and he said, And may these feet walk in the ways of righteousness forevermore.
He came to Peter and was about to wash his feet, and Peter said, Lord, would you wash my feet? And Jesus said, You do not comprehend the meaning of the thing I do, but you will comprehend. And Peter said, My master, no, you shall not stoop to wash my feet. And Jesus said, My friend, if I wash not your feet you have no part with me. And Peter said, Then, O my Lord, wash both my feet, my hands, my head. And Jesus said to him, He who has taken first his bath is clean, and has no need to wash, except his feet. The feet are truly symbols of the understanding of the man, and he who would be clean must, in the living stream of life, wash well his understanding every day.
Then Jesus sat with his disciples at the table of the feast and said, Behold the lesson of the hour: You call me master; such I am. If, then, your Lord and master kneel and wash your feet, should you not wash each other’s feet and thus show forth your willingness to serve? You know these things, and if you do them, blessed thrice are you. (Aquarian Gospel 160:1-23)
There is no honored seat at heaven’s feast except for him who humbly takes the lowest seat. God is the most perfectly humble being. See how he does all things for all who exist, yet remains invisible to them most of the time. Indifference and ingratitude are the payment he receives from human beings for his loving providence, yet he continues his care for them. He gives all to those who have nothing to give in return. He wishes nothing for them but freedom. Therefore in the kingdom of heaven the highest place is given to those who are perfected in humility.
For many years in church we often sang the song:
If thou wouldst have the dear Savior from heaven
Walk by thy side from the morn till the even,
There is a rule that each day you must follow:
Humble thyself to walk with God.
Just as the Lord, in the world’s early ages,
Walked and communed with the prophets and sages,
He will come now if you meet the conditions:
Humble thyself to walk with God.
Just as the stream finds a bed that is lowly,
So Jesus walks with the pure and the holy;
Cast out thy pride, and in heartfelt contrition
Humble thyself to walk with God.
Humble thyself and the Lord will draw near thee,
Humble thyself and His presence shall cheer thee;
He will not walk with the proud or the scornful,
Humble thyself to walk with God.
He breathed upon them and he said, And may these feet walk in the ways of righteousness forevermore. Breathing upon something is way an adept infuses it with power. So Jesus breathed upon the apostles’ feet he had washed and bestowed on them the destiny and power to “walk in the way of righteousness forevermore.”
And Jesus said, You do not comprehend the meaning of the thing I do, but you will comprehend. This is an important lesson for an aspirant, especially a yogi, to learn. True religion comes from the highest realms of consciousness, and can seem totally pointless and even foolish if not insane to those in the grip of worldly ignorance. Yet if a person perseveres in practice and observance, in time he will benefit and come to understand the purpose of what before was incomprehensible to him. The same applies to advice given by spiritually advanced people. More than once I was told to do something I thought completely silly, but when I did as directed, great understanding came to me. Please do not think I am advocating mindless and unquestioning obedience, but it must be realized that often wisdom appears foolish to those who themselves lack wisdom.
Practice of meditation can seem very silly and worthless when first presented to someone. I remember the first time I learned a meditation technique I was so disgusted at what seemed its silliness that I considered walking out of the class. I had been cheated! But fortunately the teacher said right then: “Now sit and do it for a while.” I did, and found it astoundingly effective. When after sufficient practice of that method I was instructed in a much more powerful and elaborate practice I laughed and thought: “God must have a great sense of humor. Imagine that such a strange process could help in realizing God!” But when I did it the first time I thought I would fly up and bounce off the ceiling.
The feet are truly symbols of the understanding of the man, and he who would be clean must, in the living stream of life, wash well his understanding every day. Meditation alone is the daily purification of the mind and heart that will keep them ready to receive divine wisdom through intuition.
You know these things, and if you do them, blessed thrice are you. Blessing of body, mind and soul come to those who learn and apply the wisdom of the saints and master yogis.
And then he said, This is an hour when I can truly praise the name of God, for I have greatly wished to eat with you this feast before I pass the veil; for I will eat it not again until anew I eat it with you in the kingdom of our Father-God. And then they sang the Hebrew song of praise that Jews were wont to sing before the feast.
And then they ate the pasch and as they ate, the master said, Behold, for one of you will turn away this night and will betray me into wicked hands. And the disciples were amazed at what he said; they looked into each other’s face in wonderment; they all exclaimed, Lord, is it I?
And Peter said to John, who sat beside the Lord, To whom does he refer? And John put forth his hand and touched the master’s hand and said, Which one of us is so depraved as to betray his Lord?
And Judas said, Lord, is it I? And Jesus said, He is the one who now has put his hand with mine into the dish. They looked, and Judas’ hand was with the hand of Jesus in the dish. And Jesus said, The Prophets cannot fail; the son of man must be betrayed, but woe to him who shall betray his Lord.
And from the table Judas rose at once; his hour had come. And Jesus said to him, Do quickly what you are to do. And Judas went his way. (Aquarian Gospel 160:24-35)
Here we see that all things were known to Jesus and that he revealed them to his disciples so it would be understood that nothing was fate or misfortune, but the divine will and plan.
And when the pasch was done the Lord with the eleven sat a while in silent thought. Then Jesus took a loaf of bread that had been broken not and said, This loaf is symbol of my body, and the bread is symbol of the bread of life; and as I break this loaf, so shall my flesh be broken as a pattern for the sons of men; for men must freely give their bodies up in willing sacrifice for other men. And as you eat this bread, so shall you eat the bread of life, and never die. And then he gave to each a piece of bread to eat.
And then he took a cup of wine and said, Blood is the life, this is the life-blood of the grape; it is the symbol of the life of him who gives his life for men. And as you drink this wine, if you shall drink in faith, you drink the life of Christ.
And then he supped and passed the cup, and the disciples supped; and Jesus said, This is the feast of life, the great Passover of the son of man, the Supper of the Lord, and you shall often eat the bread and drink the wine. From henceforth shall this bread be called Remembrance bread; this wine shall be Remembrance wine; and when you eat this bread and drink this wine remember me. (Aquarian Gospel 160:36-43)
There are many interpretations of this sacred action. There is abundant evidence that in the churches possessing unbroken Apostolic Succession the bread and wine are transformed and transfused with the consciousness of Christ that manifested as his immaculate body and blood. Uninvolved with the arguments and theories set forth by both believers and unbelievers, the wise simply partake of that consciousness and are enlivened by it.
Those not in churches of the Apostolic Succession have experienced that those obeying the command of Jesus and partaking of the elements that symbolize his body and blood also receive an inward spiritual vivification beyond rational understanding.
Both are constrained to “love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind” (Matthew 22:37).