[Jesus said,] Whoever does not hate his father and his mother as I do cannot become a disciple to me. And whoever does not love his father and his mother as I do cannot become a disciple to me. For my mother […], but my true mother gave me life. (101)
Nancy Johnson: He who does not hate his father and his mother as I do cannot be my disciple, and who does not love his mother and father as I do, cannot be my disciple. For my mother killed me, but my true mother has given me life.
Brown: Whoever does not hate his father and his mother in my way, shall not be able to become a Disciple to me. And whoever does [not] love his [Father] and his Mother in my way, shall not be able to become a Disciple to me. For my mother [bore me], yet [my] true [Mother] gave me life.
This verse clearly implies that each of us has two sets of “parents”–one false and one true. One is to be despised or disregarded, and the other is to be loved and clung to. We, too, are dual, having a false nature and a true nature–one of which we should disregard and one of which we should hold to. Our two natures are material and spiritual. In the Bible there are statements about the sins of the fathers being visited on the children unto the third and fourth generations. This is really about the karma created in our previous bodies that are in a sense the “fathers” of our present body. Actually the incarnate human is subject to two forces: those of the body and those of the mind. These correspond to Adam and Eve in the private history of each of us. So our previous bodies are our fathers and our previous minds are our mothers. Both have produced the karma we are reaping.
Those who have attained a spiritual, intuitive perspective realize that we have two spiritual parents: God the Father and God the Mother. Our Father is eternal Spirit and our Mother is eternal Power that embodies itself in creation and moves us along the evolutionary path from life to life. The Father sends us forth into the evolutionary womb of the Mother who fosters us and unerringly brings us to the perfect status of Sons of God, thus completing the triune nature of eternal existence.
Therefore we should disregard and turn from the material temporal parents–our body and mind–for this is what the word translated “hate” really means. And we should love our eternal Father and Mother. Our false mother gave us material birth which ended always in death, but our Divine Mother has given us ever-expanding life in the form of evolving spiritual consciousness. Therefore Nancy Johnson’s translation says that one mother killed us and the other gave us life.
There is a saying in India: “The parents give birth; but God gives life. There is an end to birth; there is no end to life.” So everyone turns from one set of parents and holds fast to the other. Some choose death and some choose life. The choice is ours.
Read the next article in the Gospel of Thomas for Yogis: Exoteric Religion