Thomas, Sayings 69 through 72

Friday, July 5, 2019

5:45 a.m. Gentlemen, let’s proceed. I don’t know why we’re pursuing the Gospel of Thomas, but as we have come so far – more than half – we might as well finish. And I recognize that, after all, this is only a contribution to understanding, not in any sense the final word. That tends to take the pressure off, if there were any. So, Saying 69 a and b.

69 a. Jesus said: Blessed are those who have been persecuted within themselves. They have really come to know the Father.

69 b. Blessed are those who are hungry in order to fill the bellies of the needy.

The former seems to me, in light of 68, to say that fighting the good fight internally does pay off. That is, seeking to create a definite point of view – seeking to create a sort of harmony rather than a chaos of contending voices – is good work and is its own reward in two ways: to help create peace for oneself, and to provide greater expression and understanding of the world as it really is.

This saying and its implications should tell you, as well, how far wrong your materialist society is in thinking that there is such a thing as mental illness that can be cured by pharmaceutical or other remedies. We said long ago, there is no such thing as mental illness, but we dropped the subject for lack of context. What appears as illness is actually the observable effects of internal warfare. Such effects can be masked; the causes cannot be “cured” but can be only suppressed.

I suppose people will be a bit puzzled at the connections we have not drawn.

Simple enough. You as communities are sometimes at war, one part of your community fighting another part. This will look like mental illness to anyone blind to the non-3D aspect of reality. This Saying recognizes that the struggle may lead you onward, and at any rate is worth the effort.

And Saying 69 b?

Life is 3D as well as non-3D. While fighting your own demons, don’t forget that what is “external” to you is a part of you no less.

Only, it is not that simple, is it?

No. You’re learning. (Said smiling.) You might look at it as saying, the world needs balance, and tends toward reestablishing it, continually. What you do not have may be assisting others with even less – and this does not refer to 3D food.

All right. Saying 70? Although, I think I understand this one well enough.

Jesus said: When you give rise to that which is within you, what you have will save you. If you do not give rise to it, what you do not have will destroy you.

You do, but say a word or two.

If we manifest our potential, we will be doing the work in 3D for which the 3D was created and, specifically, for which we were created. If we do not do the work, we cannot stand.

Still a little too cryptic, but yes. It is in the work of living your potential that your life consists. This does not mean that everyone should be, or could be, or was designed to be, his own psychiatrist, continually analyzing himself. It doesn’t even mean that everyone should be his own priest, though that is closer. But there is a certain way of taking one’s life seriously that leads to greater life,  and a way of frittering it away that leads nowhere.

But this is actually quite difficult to talk about without seriously misleading people. Best to put the clue out there and rely on people to work on its meaning individually, reminding them meanwhile to not be too quick to assume they know, just because they get an idea that resonates. There is more in this one than appears.

What about 71, then?

Jesus said: I will destroy this house, and no one will be able to build it again.

The conventional assumption is that Jesus forecasts his own death, but that seems somehow strained and irrelevant, in the way that any explanation is that begins from the wrong idea or is pursued with the wrong ideas.

When you look at it, if the Saying were as simple as the conventional interpretation would have it be, it would be hardly worth saying. Why would it be an integral part of a collection of Sayings designed to bring people somewhere? Really, it as much as says (according to these interpreters) “I’m going to kill myself, and you won’t be able to bring me back to life.” What would that even mean?

The only grain of sense in it would be that Jesus was saying, “It’s going to look like I was killed by external circumstances, but actually I’m doing it.” I agreed, it’s a misinterpretation.

You started to say, “It’s silly,” or even “It’s ridiculous,” but decided that was too dismissive. Yet, this is not wrong. It is silly, it is ridiculous. It looks at Jesus as if he were at the same time omniscient and merely human.

So what’s it really about?

Isn’t the question, what temple is Jesus talking about? If not his body, his 3D life, then what? And how does this Saying follow from the one preceding?

I don’t really know.

Look too at the Saying placed immediately afterward.

Saying 72. A man said to him: Talk to my brothers so that they will divide my father’s property with me. Jesus replied: Man, who made me a divider? He turned to his disciples and asked them: Really, am I a divider?

No, you’re going to have to help us here. I can’t get the connection. That is, I don’t have it yet. Given the spark, I’m sure we can get it. But, you are the dynamo. [That is, the generator of sparks.]

What do the three Sayings say?

Bring forth what you have, or else. Jesus will destroy “this house” and it will be irreparable. But he is not a divider.

So there’s your spark.

Maybe. The key is wholeness; without knowing and living what we are, we can’t become what it is we could be. Jesus is going to destroy something and nobody will be able to reconstruct it. but he is not a divider. By implication, he is a unifier.

So then, what is it he will unify? And how will he do that by destroying something?

I suppose he will unify something –. No, let’s look at it this way. He will destroy “this temple.” If it does not mean his life (and I don’t think it does), and it doesn’t mean Jewish religion or society or apartness (and I don’t think it means that either), it must be something both very personal to us and also universal, or the disciples would not have put it in there as a talking-point. If he weren’t calling it a temple, I’d be tempted to say he is talking about our perception of things as good and evil – that is, our fixation in duality. But I don’t see why he would call that mindset a temple.

What is a temple?

A place consecrated to God, or the gods. A place considered sacred, specifically devoted to at least one-way communication with the divine from the 3D consciousness.

Well?

Well what? That doesn’t tell me anything.

What kind of temple is Jesus going to destroy, and why?

Oops. I look back and see it doesn’t say “this temple”; it says “this house.” And you let me go on. [In fact, I see, typing this, they said it first.]

Yes, because it is a constructive misunderstanding. A “mistake,” which is to say, a Freudian slip.

Well, “this house,” then.

Think! Feel your way to it.

I don’t know. We are so accustomed to the conventional interpretation – the better-known verse has Jesus saying “and in three days I’ll rebuild it,” which has all the earmarks of later interpolation after the fact – that it is hard to see it fresh.

Which is why you read “this house” and heard “this temple.”

True. [Or, it would be true, if they had not said temple before I did.] But what’s your take on what it means?

[Pause]

And all I hear is, as they say, the sound of crickets. I’m not inclined to leave it there, though our hour is up.

Pursue the “stray thought” you just had.

Well, Jesus said he would destroy the house – and it made me think of him destroying the unity he had made of the constituent parts that had gone into the making of him.

No one will be able to follow that yet.

Jesus like any of us was a compound being, the product of innumerable sexual pairings going back to the beginnings of the human race. So he was connected in that way to humanity as are the rest of us. But if he truly forged a true unify out of all those contents, and that is why he had such presence – in that sense he could be considered a completed human.

Yes, and suppose he deliberately undid that unity? Why would he do that?

And for that matter, how would he do it? But yes, why? Tell us.

And he is not a divider, remember.

The sense I get – but not the connecting links – is that by destroying the unity he had forged he could somehow create a greater unity.

You’re on the right track now. He had to go [from 3D] before the Holy Spirit could come, remember? And “behold I will be with you always, even to the end.”

It seems to have something to do with a unique ability of Jesus to connect with all humanity personally.

Correct.

It’s like he somehow became everywhere in the human psyche.

True enough as one way to see it. You will see that although this is very historical – that is, tied to one specific life rather than a generalized mythological descent from the gods – it is not a matter of identifying with the historical Jesus as an object of a cult. It wasn’t about him although he is the one involved. He was the finger pointing to the moon and, in fact, offering a ride there. Worshipping him is a mistake the early disciples were not tempted to make. They revered him as one might revere a hero; they did not turn their back on his teachings by letting themselves fall into idol worship.

Enough for the moment.

Hard work sometimes. Our thanks as always.

 

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