The June online satsang with Swami Nirmalananda Giri (Abbot George Burke) will be on Saturday, June 8th, at 12 Noon, EST.
Home - Original Christianity - Introduction to the Gospel of Thomas - Father in Heaven; Father on Earth

Father in Heaven; Father on Earth

Chapter 15 of the Gospel of Thomas for Awakening

The Gospel of Thomas for Awakeing cover
Also available as a free PDF download from our E-Library, or as a paperback or ebook from Amazon internationally.

Jesus said, When you see one who was not born of woman, prostrate yourselves on your faces and worship him. That one is your father. (15)

Everyone who has read the Gospels is very familiar with the injunction: “Call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven” (Matthew 23:9). I grew up with this verse being used as a stone to throw at Catholics for calling a priest “Father” while the stone-throwers proceeded to write in their biological father’s name on all kinds of forms and applications. Bigotry is its own justification.

However that might be, when we turn to the East and even the yoga world this mandate goes out the window in a welter of adulation and titles. One time at a spiritual conference in Northern India I heard a shameless and (literally) criminal guru even more shamelessly being introduced with a string of inflated titles that went on for a long time before his name was even reached. A friend of mine came across several lines of adulatory appellations in reference to a contemporary super-guru who claimed to be the only legitimate guru presently on the earth. “Why don’t they just call him ‘God’?” he demanded in disgust. “It would be easier to spell and shorter to say!” Of course a lot of “avatars” are presently racing around India and the world. What to do about it? Nothing. Let them and their followers have their fun. And let us consider what real masters have taught–such as this verse from the Gospel of Thomas.

Since only God is our Father (and Mother), only God, or someone who is totally one with God and knows that God is his Self, can be called (or considered) Father in the spiritual sense. Jesus obviously has no problem with calling God Father, but this verse is obviously referring to human beings, or at least those in human form.

He is quite simple in his exposition. “One who was not born of woman” is Father. “Woman” has two levels of meaning in this: 1) humanity and 2) the cosmos–relativity itself. So a “Father” can have no identity with either limited humanity or the human body. That is, he knows himself as neither the body nor even human. Further, he does not in any way consider himself to be an entity separate from God, however exalted that status might be. He sees and knows only the Absolute. Even his individual Self he knows only in its eternal relation to God. Creation (Prakriti) has ceased to exist for him and only the consciousness of Spirit (Purusha) prevails. Nothing about him has been born from anything but the Infinite.

When we do meet such a one, they are worthy of reverence and even worship to some extent. (It should be pointed out here that such a Father may be in female form.)

The big question is Who? Who is such a divinized being? Naturally everyone is going to insist their guru or other kind of religious potentate is such a one, and there is no reasoning with them. I could give my list, but what value is that? The problem lies in the subjectivity that has to come into such opinions.

The best thing is not to care, but to keep on making sure we ourselves become such a one in the future.

Read the next section in The Gospel of Thomas for Yogis: Divine Discord

(Visited 2,090 time, 1 visit today)

Chapters in The Gospel of Thomas for Awakening

  1. The Open Secrets
  2. Seeking Is More Than Just Finding
  3. Seeking the Kingdom Realistically
  4. The One Goal
  5. From the Seen to the Unseen
  6. What Jesus Wants Us To Do
  7. Eat Or Be Eaten
  8. Fishing Wisely
  9. The Inner Field
  10. Guarding the Flame
  11. What Will You Do?
  12. Who Shall Lead?
  13. The Unspeakable
  14. When Virtue is Vice
  15. Father in Heaven; Father on Earth
  16. Divine Discord
  17. The Divine Gift
  18. The Origin is the End
  19. Original Being
  20. A Mustard Seed
  21. Disciples of Jesus
  22. How to Enter the Kingdom
  23. Unity of Vision
  24. Where is Christ?
  25. Love and Protect
  26. Seeing
  27. The Fasting and Sabbath of the Spirit
  28. How Jesus Saw the World
  29. Hidden Treasure
  30. One
  31. The Power of Unbelief
  32. Spiritual Strength
  33. Speak It Out
  34. The Blind
  35. The Secret of Spiritual Security
  36. Live Carefree
  37. Unashamed Before God
  38. At the Source
  39. The Religion of Ignorance
  40. Within God
  41. Spiritual Gain and Loss
  42. Move On
  43. Challenging the Master
  44. The Source of Good and Evil
  45. Great in the Kingdom
  46. Impossible Duality
  47. Peace That Moves Mountains
  48. Back to the Source
  49. Children of the Light
  50. Here and Now
  51. Seeing Yet Blind
  52. Outer Ritual or Inner Growth?
  53. Infinite Transcendence
  54. “Hate”
  55. True Understanding
  56. Wheat and Weeds
  57. Finding Life
  58. Live and Die Not
  59. “Lest Thou Also…”
  60. Who Will Die; Who Will Live
  61. The Path of Unknowing
  62. Awakened by Death
  63. Turning Ourselves Away
  64. Gullibility
  65. The Rejected is Truly Accepted
  66. All–and Nothing
  67. The Blessings of Persecution
  68. Life or Death Lie Within
  69. Admission
  70. Not a Divider
  71. Seeking the Harvest
  72. Thirsting in Vain
  73. Who Shall Enter?
  74. Unfailing Treasure
  75. The All Speaks
  76. Well-dressed Ignoramuses
  77. True Blessedness
  78. A Duplication
  79. Balancing the Inner and the Outer
  80. Near and Far
  81. Seeing the Unseeable
  82. Seeing Your Unknown Side
  83. Our Forefather Adam
  84. Blessed Homelessness
  85. Doubly Wretched
  86. Onward and Upward
  87. Twofold Life
  88. The Yoke of Christ
  89. Knowing the Unknown
  90. Asking and Hearing
  91. Give Not…
  92. Seeking and Knocking
  93. Right Generosity
  94. The Expanding Kingdom
  95. The Fulfilled Universe
  96. Taking Stock
  97. The Spiritual Family
  98. Three Debts
  99. Father and Mother
  100. Exoteric Religion
  101. Ready for Invasion
  102. Penitential Discipline, Anyone?
  103. Daring to Know
  104. Ending Duality
  105. “I Love You More…”
  106. At the Source
  107. Finding the Hidden Treasure
  108. Having Come to the End
  109. Immortal and Above the World
  110. Body and Soul
  111. Where is the Kingdom?
  112. Male and Female?
  113. In Conclusion
  114. Glossary
(Visited 2,090 time, 1 visit today)