After three years, when Mary and Elizabeth had studied enough in Zoan and it was learned that they could return to Israel in safety.
“And then Elihu spoke. He said to Mary and Elizabeth, Our words are said; you need not tarry longer here; the call has come; the way is clear, you may return unto your native land.
“A mighty work is given you to do; you shall direct the minds that will direct the world. Your sons are set apart to lead men up to righteous thoughts, and words, and deeds; to make men know the sinfulness of sin; to lead them from the adoration of the lower self, and all illusive things, and make them conscious of the self that lives with Christ in God.
“In preparation for their work your sons must walk in many thorny paths. Fierce trials and temptations they will meet, like other men; their loads will not be light, and they will weary be, and faint. And they will know the pangs of hunger and of thirst; and without cause they will be mocked, imprisoned, scourged.
“To many countries they will go, and at the feet of many masters they will sit, for they must learn like other men.
“But we have said enough. The blessings of the Three and of the Seven, who stand before the throne, will surely rest upon you evermore” (Aquarian Gospel 12:13-21).
Your sons are set apart to lead men up to righteous thoughts, and words, and deeds. They are not to threaten, frighten, cajole, or philosophize; they are to lead. The response to their teaching must be voluntary, the exercise of free will. This is underscored in the eighty-eighth chapter of the Aquarian Gospel (Aquarian Gospel 88:17-35). When Jesus met His disciples, to all of them He spoke of the spiritual work that both he and they should be doing, each time concluding with the words: “I go and you may follow me.” There was no doubt that He would fulfill His spiritual destiny, and if they willed to do so, they could follow Him and do the same. But it had to be completely their choice. This must be the understanding in all religion; there is no “must,” only “may.” Only those who truly desire the Goal should travel the path. Otherwise there is only hypocrisy and futility. This is a truth the East has known from time immemorial, but one which the West has yet to grasp.
John and Jesus will not lead us up to heaven or to theologizing; they will lead us up to righteous thoughts, words, and deeds. And it is a matter of up–we must ascend in consciousness, not merely engage in mechanical, external appearances.
In the Four Gospels, the Greek word dikaios is used for righteousness. The root meaning of this word is rightness in the sense of being in congruity with Reality: God. It is not a matter of observing arbitrary rules or thinking in demanded ways–that is the province of fake religion. Rather, it is being in harmony with the truth of things, with God. This is much more profound–and effective–than mere religious observance. The entire scope of human function–thought, word, and deed–is to be aligned with Divine Consciousness, which includes Divine Will.
The purpose of John and Jesus is perfectly set forth in the Sanskrit prayer:
Lead me from the unreal to the Real.
Lead me from darkness to the Light.
Lead me from death to Immortality.
To make men know the sinfulness of sin. Sin has got to be faced. There is nothing positive in ignoring or denying disease, and it is the same in regard to sin. It is only those who are determined to remain in sin that get indignant at its mention. Those who aspire to holiness want to comprehend sin so they can eliminate it.
It is highly significant that the Four Gospels were written in Greek. This was done not only so the more subtle meanings inherent in Greek could be conveyed, but also to break with the previous views inherent in Hebrew. Sin is a clear example of this. In Hebrew the word chatta’ah means an offence, a wrongdoing. But in Greek the concept is completely different. Amartia means to miss the mark, to fall short of the ideal. It has no connotation of transgression of law or condemnation. To sin is to fail. Sin is undesirable, not because it makes God angry, but because it is a falling short of the realization of our divine potential. This falling short has terrible consequences–just look at the present state of humanity and the world to see that. So sin is not just a little blip or inconvenience. It is a serious matter, indeed, for it is the root of great suffering. Sin is ignorance manifested. To “know the sinfulness of sin” means to learn its real nature and to realize its detriment. It is not to tremble at the wrath of an offended deity. As with everything else, sin must be viewed rationally and pragmatically. And eradicated from thought, word, and deed.
From lower to higher
To lead them from the adoration of the lower self, and all illusive things, and make them conscious of the self that lives with Christ in God. To turn away from the false self of the ego and all that it binds us to in its bid for our enslavement and to become freed in the consciousness of our true self, the spirit which ever lives with and in Christ as sons of God
Preparing for the task
In preparation for their work your sons must walk in many thorny paths. Fierce trials and temptations they will meet, like other men; their loads will not be light, and they will weary be, and faint. And they will know the pangs of hunger and of thirst; and without cause they will be mocked, imprisoned, scourged.
This is so important. Jesus walked the path that every one of us must tread to Christhood. Jesus is not a rarity or an abstract archetype–He is exactly what we are to be. And the path He travelled was one of “fierce trials and temptations,” the loads were not light and He was often weary and faint. Hunger and thirst, mockery and persecution were not unknown to Him, nor will they be to us, for “the disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master” (Luke 6:40). And that includes the cross, the crown of thorns, and the wounds…but also the resurrection, the ascension, and the reign. Wherefore “I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18). We must be like Jesus, “who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:2). Having gone the way before us, Jesus knows every nuance of the journey; and through our union with Him in the Eucharist and our practice of The Silence He will be with us and direct us all the way. “In all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us” (Romans 8:37).
To many countries they will go, and at the feet of many masters they will sit, for they must learn like other men. Like them, we must seek out the traditions of many lands and learn from the wisdom of many masters of those traditions. Then we will be fitted to continue even now, two thousand years later, the same mission to which they were called and to which they have called us.
Departure from Egypt
“Thus closed the lessons of Elihu and Salome. Three years they taught their pupils in the sacred grove, and if their lessons all were written in a book, lo, it would be a mighty book; of what they said we have the sum.
“Now, Mary, Joseph and Elizabeth with Jesus and his harbinger, set forth upon their homeward way. They went not by Jerusalem, for Archelaus reigned. They journeyed by the Bitter Sea, and when they reached Engedi hills they rested in the home of Joshua, a near of kin; and here Elizabeth and John abode.
“But Joseph, Mary and their son went by the Jordan way, and after certain days they reached their home in Nazareth” (Aquarian Gospel 12:22-25).
Read the next section in the Aquarian Gospel for Yogis: Sin and the Forgiveness of Sin