[ jee-zuhs krahyst]
When we say “Jesus”, we are not referring to a man who lived 2000 years ago, but to a certain possibility within every human being.
Sadhguru: When we say “Jesus”, we are not referring to a man who lived 2000 years ago, but to a certain possibility within every human being. It is essential that every individual allows this quality to flower within him, because today in the name of religion, people are willing to take each other’s lives. In our aspirations for the divine, we are losing our Humanity.
The most significant aspect of Jesus’s teaching was about living without prejudice, without seeing who is yours and who is not yours. Only then would one know the kingdom of God. He clearly said, “The Kingdom of God is not somewhere up there, it is within you.” Only in the initial “marketing phase” did Jesus talk about taking you to the Kingdom of God. Once enough people had gathered around him, he turned around and said, “The Kingdom of God is within you.” That is the crux of his teaching.
Unfortunately, 99% of the population is missing something so fantastic within themselves. If it was somewhere far away, you may not wish to make the journey. But when it is right here and you miss, isn’t that a tragedy? If the Kingdom of God is within you, you must explore it within; it is as simple as that.
What About Faith?
There are scientific methods that give access to that dimension within you which is the very source of creation; the very body that you carry is created from within. Jesus didn’t have enough time in his life to propound science, so he spoke about faith because it is a quick way. When he said, “Only children will enter the kingdom of God,” he was not talking about little children, he was talking about one who is childlike, one who doesn’t have foregone conclusions about everything; unprejudiced.
Whatever conclusion you make, you are bound to be wrong, because life does not fit into any of your conclusions. Neither life nor the source of life will yield to one who has too many conclusions. If you keep that baggage down, it is very simple.
Towards the end of his life, when it was quite certain that Jesus was going to be put to death, the only question his disciples could think of was, “When you leave your body and go to your Father’s kingdom, you will sit on his right-hand side. Where will we be? Which one of us will be on your right-hand side?” Their master – they see him as the son of god – is going to be put to a horrible death, and that’s their question! But just look at the man’s quality – he displayed this quality all his life – no matter which way everybody is pulling him, his mission of establishing what he wants, goes on. So he says, “Those who stand first here will stand last there. Those who stand last here will stand first there.” He destroyed the hierarchy; that this is not about elbowing your way to heaven. In the inner realm only purity works.
Let The Spirit Of Jesus Live!
It is time to look beyond belief systems and look at life the way it is. After all, the source of creation is within you. If you allow it to function, everything will be in harmony; and that is the very basis of his teachings. Jesus’ words have brought much sacrifice, piety and love to the world, but the most important aspect of his life; the crux and the bedrock of his teaching is, “The Kingdom of God is within you.”
If it is within, it is a spiritual process. A spiritual process does not mean a group, cult or fan club. It is an individual seeking, which is the essence of yoga and the spiritual process in the East. Unfortunately, the most crucial elements that Jesus spoke of have been forgotten. It is time to bring back the essence of his words – not only for a particular group, but for everyone. Let the spirit of Jesus live.
Krishna, Jesus and the Path of Devotion
Q: When the meek person came to Krishna and explained how he perceived his dharma, that he took anything that came his way in total acceptance, Krishna said that his dharma is that of a coward, and he let him pass. Whereas Jesus says, “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.” So what is the difference between the two?
Sadhguru: It is always very important that one perceives the kind of situation and the kind of social realities someone lived in and why they spoke the way they spoke. There is one aspect of the teaching which is of an eternal nature – whoever speaks it, speaks in the same terms. But there is another aspect of the teaching which is relevant to the people who are sitting there at that moment. That relevance keeps changing from generation to generation. Not only from generation to generation, but even within the generation from society to society, from group of people to group of people, from person to person, it is a different reality.
If we want to understand this aspect, we have to bring some kind of alignment to the social realities that Krishna lived in, the social realities that Jesus lived in, and the social realities that you live in right now.
Jesus sort of substantiated this aspect of being meek by saying, “If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.” He was talking to his closest disciples before sending them out to spread his message. He said, “When you go out with this new message, if people come and slap you on one cheek, show the other.” But that is not the teaching for all of you. Can you live by those guidelines? Genuinely, how many of you are capable of this in your life? You are not capable of that.
Krishna lived in totally different conditions, and he spoke differently to different people. If you look at what Krishna spoke about bhakti or devotion, you would think it is very contradictory to this aspect .
Another thing we need to understand is, Jesus was hugely restricted by the situation in which he existed. He had no real freedom of speech. He mostly lived like a fugitive. Here and there, he spoke to small groups of people. If he had said one more word, his life would have been finished, and it happened that way. The moment he picked up a little momentum, you know what they did to him. Krishna was a kingmaker. His friends were kings and emperors. He could call upon large armies to fulfill his purpose. So he was placed in a completely different situation.
I am the Way
When it comes to approaching the eternal, Jesus was just talking about the yoga of devotion, because that is his way. He was talking about one dimension of approaching the Ultimate. He was just saying, “Follow me.” This is devotion. Krishna also said the same things. He said, “I am the way.” Jesus said something like, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one goes to the Father except through me.” But he went further somewhere else and said, “I and the Father are one.” In that part of the world, uttering such a thing was total sacrilege. If anybody claims “I and the Father are one,” it means, “I am God.” Such a claim immediately brought death penalty in that part of the world. But here in India, any number of yogis have said it, and people treated them and worshipped them as gods because they experienced the Divine in them. When Krishna said, “I am the Ultimate Divine,” people were not surprised or shocked. It was not a sacrilege because that was very much a part of people’s knowing. They were very happy he had come when they were alive.
Any number of yogis have said this. Well-known ones and very minor ones. When I say minor, I mean it in terms of social acknowledgement. They were great people within themselves, but socially, in the world, they were very small. Those people have been worshipped as gods. But for Jesus, it was totally out of place in that culture. Him saying, “Me and My Father are one” brought him death. With Krishna too, any number of times, people tried to kill him, but they tried to kill him not for his utterances; they tried to kill him for political and military reasons because he was involved in those affairs. Nobody ever tried to kill him because of the teaching he gave.