A Commentary on the Odes of Solomon. The Odes are the earliest known Christian mystical hymns and poetry (discover more).
Behold! the Lord is our mirror. Open (your) eyes and see them in Him.
And learn the manner of your face, and declare praises to His Spirit.
And wipe off the filth from your face, and love His holiness and clothe yourselves therewith.
And you will be without stain at all times with Him.
(Ode of Solomon 13)
- Behold! the Lord is our mirror. Open (your) eyes and see them in Him.
Here we see how incredibly far contemporary Christianity has drifted from Original Christianity, which was a firmly non-dual philosophy rooted in the enlightened consciousness of the Indian sages with whom Jesus lived for over half of his life. It would seem that today the more “Christian” a person is, the less they have to do with the real Christ and his teachings.
Normally we think that the illumined mystic sees through or into the world around him and sees God. But the Isha Upanishad opens with the words: “All this–whatever exists in this changing universe–should be covered by the Lord.” That is, we should be seeing God first and the world only secondarily. Instead of God being seen inside the world of matter, we should be seeing God as pervading the world and filling all space. Further, since we are eternally one with God, in him we see our true Self. We reflect him and he reflects us in perfect unity. If we see anything outside God it is unreal. Only when we open our spiritual eyes in God will we see things as they are.
- And learn the manner of your face, and declare praises to His Spirit.
When we see divinity we see the reality of humanity, and see that our face is Brahmamayi–formed of God. Then we can really praise God–not as some mighty universal potentate, but as Infinite Consciousness, Infinite Spirit of which we are an integral and inseparable part.
- And wipe off the filth from your face, and love His holiness and clothe yourselves therewith.
We must remove all vestiges of relative, illusory existence from the face of our mind and clothe ourselves with the holiness that is God. Saint Paul was referring to this mystical reality when he wrote: “As many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:27).
- And you will be without stain at all times with Him.
Awake in God we will be perpetually pure with his purity. Saint John therefore said: “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure” (I John 3:2,3). There is no place here for the “poor miserable sinner” attitude of corrupted Christianity. “I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High” (Psalms 82:6), is the true Gospel of Christ–of “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).
This Wednesday we will post the second of three audio podcasts by Abbot George Burke on his memories of Swami Sivananda of Rishikesh during his visit to India in 1962. In this second podcast Abbot George relates how Sivananda shared this love through his wisdom and humor, and tells Sivananda’s one prescription for successful sadhana.
Those who have not listened to the first podcast can listen to Remembering Sivananda, Part 1 here.