February 4, 2011 on 10:00 am
Dear Spiritual Explorer: Where was Christ in the intervening years before he began his ministry? Jerry Smith, Biloxi, MS
Dear Jerry: I have heard your question re-phrased: Was Christ a Yogi? While I am not a biblical scholar, particularly in dating events,I must say that there is a real mystery as to how Christ spent his years after he was 12 and when he began his ministry at the approximate age of 33. It is also interesting to note that many people begin their true spiritual journey around the same age, and those years are called familiarly the Christ years. There has been a strong belief that Christ spent a number of those years in India where he developed a more enlightened and peaceful approach to how to deal with humanity. This of course was a great departure from the God of the Jews which depicted God as quite an angry and vengeful soul when his commands were not carried out. Those of us who prefer that characterization of Christ would particularly like the Yogic Christ Statue depicting Christ in a very peaceful and yogic pose, unlike conventional statues of Christ showing him suffering on a cross.
This brings me to my next insight into those who have adopted the faith of Christ even though the representation of him has been one of a truly suffering deity nailed to a cross. I congratulate these people on their faith and that they did not need some outward show of bliss in order to believe their God was Christ. In fact, I have met one unique scholar of Christ who told me that Christ on the cross has a very deep and esoteric meaning. This woman who had spent many years in a monastery, told me of a vision she had experienced of Christ carrying the cross. As she saw Christ laboring under this enormous burden, she felt she suddenly realized the true nature of that symbol. She stated that the vertical and horizontal posts were representative of men and women and as Christ labored under the cross, he was helping carrying the burden of humanity. She said she was inclined to believe the message because while she was seeing Christ in that vision, she was also experiencing an extraordinary compassion for Christ which extended to an enormous feeling of love and compassion for humanity.
While I personally do not subscribe to the idea of original sin, I do acknowledge that there are great souls on this earth known as saints and gurus, who help us carry the burden of, if not of sins, other human traits that come with an earthly, egoic existence, that we wish to transcend or convert and that these holy people‘s total sacrifice is to help us carry the enormous weight of what I call a burden. For this I am most grateful for people like Christ, Buddha, Ma Jaya, Ramana Maharshi, Nityananda, etc.
How lucky are those who have been in the presence of some of these great saints!
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