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Chapter One Hundred Twenty Six

Hoffman's portrait of ChristPart 138 of the Aquarian Gospel for Awakening

A company of scribes and Pharisees came from Jerusalem to learn wherein the power of Jesus lay. But when they learned that he and his disciples heeded not the custom of the Jews, regarding washing of the hands before they ate, they were amazed. And Jesus said, Hypocrisy is queen among you scribes and Pharisees. Of you Isaiah wrote: This people honor me with lips; their hearts are far away. In vain they worship me; their doctrines are the dogmas and the creeds of men. You men who pose as men of God, and still reject the laws of God and teach the laws of men, stand forth and tell when God gave unto men the ceremonial laws that you observe; and tell these people how the spirit life is sullied if one washes not before he eats. (Aquarian Gospel 126:1-6)

The power of Jesus which interested the scribes and Pharisees was not spiritual power nor even miraculous power, but what they considered was his power over others. This is always true of such people. They never give ordinary people any credit for either good sense or will power. So they are always holding forth about discovering who has influenced or deceived them, looking for someone to blame for their losing their grasp on those people. This is especially the way of religion. I encountered it early on in life.

It cannot be denied that much of religion is purely from the human ego and ignorance. Few teach the true laws of God, but only externals and externally-directed doctrines. Obsession with ceremonial purity has been a curse of religion through the ages.

His critics answered not, and then he said, Hear me, you men of Israel! Defilement is a creature of the heart. The carnal mind lays hold of thought, and makes a monstrous bride; this bride is sin; sin is a creature of the mind. (Aquarian Gospel 126:7, 8)

Defilement is a matter of the mind and heart. When there is something wrong in a person’s life there is something wrong in their mind. Just as Edison could not have invented a light bulb if the idea was not first in his mind, so no one does any act that does not come from his mind. Action is the fruition of seeds sown in the mind in this or past lives. So unless we start with the mind we will never be able to correct our behavior.

That which defiles a man is not the food he eats. The bread and fish and other things we eat, are simply cups to carry to the cells of flesh material for the building of the human house, and when their work is done as refuse they are cast away. The life of plant and flesh that goes to build the human house is never food for soul. The spirit does not feed upon the carcasses of animal, or plant. God feeds the soul direct from heaven; the bread of life comes from above. The air we breathe is charged with Holy Breath, and he who wills may take this Holy Breath. The soul discriminates, and he who wants the life of Christ may breathe it in. According to your faith so let it be. (Aquarian Gospel 126:9-14)

That which defiles a man is not the food he eats. This does not contradict the teaching of the upanishad I cited. The energies from food that attach themselves to the mind are of two qualities: light and fluid and heavy and inert, not good or bad. However, since we are working for self-transformation, the light energies make this possible, whereas the heavy energies often cannot even be moved by our will in spiritual practices. Thus, the light energies are a help and the heavy are a hindrance. For this reason yogis are always careful about their diet. They do not avoid things because they are evil or eat that which they think is good or virtuous, but those that make purification and refinement of our mental energies possible. It is not a matter of pure and impure, spiritually speaking. Yet we must be aware of the effect different foods have on the mind. For example, when I first began teaching yoga I wondered how important vegetarianism was for them my future students. So rather than just parrot that they should be vegetarians, I broke my discipline and ate a single hamburger. It hindered my meditations for over a week! My mind just would not go upward as it did before. The heavy vibrations of the meat was like ballast to a balloon. So I did not hesitate from then on to advise the adoption of a vegetarian diet.

The life of plant and flesh that goes to build the human house is never food for soul. The spirit does not feed upon the carcasses of animal, or plant. We do need to realize that although the spirit is never affected by diet, the subtle bodies that make up the soul are made out of the energies of the food we eat. The soul is not defiled but it is either made light or heavy. So for the yogi diet is a very practical matter. Nevertheless there is the karma involved in killing a sentient being for its flesh, and that is very much a hindrance to spiritual life.

God feeds the soul direct from heaven; the bread of life comes from above. But we have to look above and seek the bread of heaven, and if the energies of the mind are heavy and inert we will either not look up and ask for the bread of life, or will not be able to receive it when it is offered to us. This is simple fact.

The air we breathe is charged with Holy Breath, and he who wills may take this Holy Breath. The soul discriminates, and he who wants the life of Christ may breathe it in. Now we have gotten to an extremely important subject: that of breath as a means to fill ourselves with the light of the Holy Spirit. Pranayama, work with the breath, is a vital part of yoga and meditation practice because the breath directly affects the mind and the subtle faculties in the soul-bodies. Everything alive breathes, for the breath is a direct manifestation of the Holy Spirit, the Holy Breath, the Spirit of Christ. The pranayama of yoga should not be equated with the breathing exercises of hatha yoga. Yoga pranayama consists of observing the breath and integrating certain esoteric practices with the process of inhalation and exhalation. I have written elsewhere:

“The reason why breath plays such an important part in the technique of classical Yoga lies in the close relation existing between breath and mind. ‘Breath and mind arise from the same source,’ the Self, according to Sri Ramana Maharshi in Day By Day With Bhagavan. One of the most profound texts on the philosophy behind yoga, the Shiva Sutras, says: ‘The connection of pure consciousness with breath [prana] is natural’ (Shiva Sutras 3:43). Breath is the meeting place of body, mind, and spirit.

“The breath and the body are completely interconnected and interrelated, as is seen from the fact that the breath is calm when the body is calm, and agitated or labored when the body is agitated or labored. The heavy exhalation made when feeling exhausted and the enthusiastic inhalation made when feeling energized or exhilarated establish the same fact.

“The breath and the emotions are completely interconnected and interrelated, as is seen from the fact that the breath is calm when the emotions are calm, and agitated and labored when the emotions are agitated or out of control. Our drawing of a quick breath, when we are surprised, shocked, or fearful, and the forceful exhalation done when angry or annoyed demonstrate this.

“The breath and the mind are completely interconnected and interrelated, as is seen from the fact that the breath is calm when the mind is calm, and agitated, irregular, and labored when the mind is agitated or disturbed in any way. Our holding of the breath when attempting intense concentration also shows this.

“Breath, which exists on all planes of manifestation, is the connecting link between matter and energy on the one hand and consciousness and mind on the other. It is necessary for the vitalization and functioning of all vehicles of consciousness, physical or superphysical.

“We start with awareness of the ordinary physical breath, but that awareness, when cultivated correctly, leads us into higher awareness which enables us to perceive the subtle movement behind the breath. Ultimately, we come into contact with the breather of the breath, our own spirit.

“In many spiritual traditions the same word is used for both breath and spirit, underscoring the esoteric principle that in essence they are the same, though we naturally think of spirit as being the cause of breath(ing). The word used for both breath and spirit is: In Judaism, Ruach. In Eastern Christianity (and ancient Greek religion), Pneuma. In Western Christianity (and ancient Roman religion), Spiritus (which comes from spiro, ‘I breathe’). In Hinduism and Buddhism, Atma (from the root word at which means ‘to breathe’), and Prana.”

A description of pranayama would be a distraction here. See my book Om Yoga for instruction in pranayama.

Man is not a part of his abiding place; the house is not the man. The lower world builds up the house of flesh, and keeps it in repair; the higher world provides the bread of spirit life. The loveliest lilies grow from stagnant ponds and filthiest muck. The law of flesh demands that one should keep the body clean. The law of spirit call for purity in thought and word and deed. (Aquarian Gospel 126:15-19)

The lowest part of our life, the body, is also the highest part, according to its degree of purity. And the degree of purity of our thought, word and deed determines how much or how little we are living and embodying the Christ-life.

Now, when the evening came and they were in the house, the twelve had many things to say, and many questions to propound. Nathaniel asked, Was what you said about the house of flesh a parable? If so, what does it mean? And Jesus said, Can you not yet discriminate? Do you not yet perceive that what a man takes in his mouth defiles him not? His food goes not into his soul; it is material for flesh and bone and brawn. To spirit everything is clean. That which defiles a man wells up from carnal thoughts; and carnal thoughts spring from the heart, and generate a host of evil things. From out the heart comes murders, thefts and foolishness. All selfish acts and sensual deeds spring from the heart. To eat with unwashed hands does not defile the man. (Aquarian Gospel 126:20-27)

This is so clear that it needs no comment.

And Peter said, Lord, What you said today has grievously offended scribe and Pharisee. And Jesus said, These scribes and Pharisees are not the scions of the tree of life; they are not plants of God; they are the plants of men, and every foreign plant shall be plucked up. Let all these men alone; they are blind guides; they lead a multitude of people who are blind. The leaders and the led together walk; together they will fall into the yawning pits. (Aquarian Gospel 126:28-31)

It is a mistake to become upset and mentally involved with false religion, false teachers and their followers. They are a part of the human situation, and only evolution enables a person to perceive them for what they are. So we should pay attention to fostering our own spiritual lives, part of which is cultivating good will and blessing for all, including such people. They, too, will one day take the upward path and attain Christhood.

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 Swami Nirmalananda Giri (Abbot George Burke)

  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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