TGU and Thomas: Saying 16

Saying 16

16 a Jesus said: People think, perhaps, that I have come to throw peace upon the world. They don’t know that I have come to throw disagreement upon the world, and fire, and sword, and struggle.

16 b [For] there will be five in one house. Three will oppose two. Two will oppose three. The father will oppose his son and the son oppose his father. And they will stand up and they will be alone [monochos].

Each time we do this, I am struck by how superficially I have read the material until I have to write it out longhand. You can’t skim while writing. So, what do we make of this one, beyond the obvious?

Perhaps state the obvious, as a beginning.

All right. At first it doesn’t seem much different from what we get in other gospels, that Jesus came to bring strife to the world. “I bring not peace but a sword,” if I remember correctly. I always took that to mean that somehow he – who he was, what that meant – would become a point of contention and that would be a good thing, a productive thing. Of course ever since World War I, anything that promises peace is welcomed, at least in the West, and anything that promotes contention is seen as a bad thing.

And beyond the obvious?

I can’t help wondering if three against two and two against three means more than numbers arbitrarily chosen.

Anything else?

I don’t know what is special about the world monochos, that the translator should include it in brackets to clarify the meaning of alone, but “they will stand up and they will be alone” is not particularly clear to me.

Very well. The previous saying?

We decided it referred to our non-3D and 3D nature. And, suddenly I wonder if this saying could refer to the effect of Jesus on us internally, each of us individual/communities? (TGU pointed out that in 3D, we experience ourselves commonly as individuals, but in fact we are communities of strands cohabiting one body, learning to act as an individual. See, for instance, my book The Cosmic Internet.) Presumably we would (or anyway might) have strands that reacted antagonistically to each other. It would force us to choose what we value, who we want to be. Until now I had been thinking the saying referred to people in society, not also to the society within each of us.

Say this is so. Why would it be Jesus, particularly, having this effect?

I don’t know that he ever says it would only be him.

Regardless, why him?

I suppose if we regard him as an example of perfect synchrony between 3D and non-3D, maybe something within us naturally relates. An example of charisma, in effect, the attractiveness of wholeness.

Not only the attractiveness: To some it is a threat.

Yes, we’ve seen it in our day with Kennedy, and Franklin Roosevelt before him, to name only two. People were taken by them or violently rejected them, with a smaller middle ground than usual

And they were nowhere near as unified as Jesus. He filled a certain type of man with overwhelming fear and therefore hatred. This in addition to – or perhaps it would be closer to say by the same process as – filling others with love and devotion to the point that they would and did walk away from their old lives without looking back.

Now, consider. Jesus came into the world to exemplify perfect congruence between 3D and non-3D, or, as it would have been phrased then, between himself as a man, and God. The natural effect of wholeness is attractiveness or repulsion, depending upon the nature of the person responding, and this reaction is outside the control of the conscious 3D mind. That is, it is not a matter of making a decision; one’s nature decides instantly. You might say, decides in advance. But given that you as individuals consist of other 3D individuals in other times, that are nonetheless alive within you – what do you do if this bundle of traits and values is instantly attracted and another is instantly repulsed? There is no reason to expect things to balance out; rather, three against two, two against three.

“And they will stand up and they will be alone”?

Take a second and ponder that – and your readers should too – before continuing.


Sounds to me like, “they will become alert, and will decide, regardless of what other aspects may do” – or, perhaps, let’s say in ignorance of what other aspects will do.

So this is the individual process – that is, the process within the individual – that his presence precipitates. The equivalent process between individuals, the common understanding of the saying, is actually less observable.

Less observable? Don’t we mean less intense?

Yes, that will do. Within an individual, the process of division has no modulation. It is not a matter of “externals” – that is, of slowed-down, apparently unconnected, reactions – but of internals, which means not only immediate but, often enough, out of range of observation. Knowing what you think and feel is often quite difficult, as life will have demonstrated to you. One external individual in relation to another is, in effect, one set of compromises or adjustments in relation to another set of compromises or adjustments. There is apt to be less extremism between individuals as experienced in 3D than within them.

And this situation helps us, how?

It is better to know than to not know, to be awake and alert than asleep and oblivious, to use your time in 3D than to let it slip by. You understand, we are not speaking of externals.

This is connected with “I have come that you may have life more abundantly,” isn’t it?

What your day finds hard to understand is how profoundly the human situation changed when Jesus lived among the world of his day. Things fundamentally changed, and continued to change as the altered consciousness spread from person to person, and founded communities, and raised children into it. The story of Christianity when told as external conversion of opinions misses the reality entirely, and of course when it was coopted and coerced into being an arm of the state, or even as a pillar of society without coercive powers, this was not only beside the point but contrary to the point. However, all this lay in the future, which as always would have to take care of itself. What Jesus did was change what it meant to be human. It took a while to spread, but from his ministry dates a new kind of 3D relation to the non-3D. Such increased access cannot be revoked; you can’t go home again, and why would you want to? Only, no step is ever final. Now it is time for another (and not the first since then, either), and it is spreading through the world, as it always does, not externally but internally.

Enough for the moment. Our thanks for your attention and for the work involved in pondering new material, new ways of perceiving.


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