TGU and Thomas: Saying 37 and 38

Saying 37

The disciples asked him: When will you appear to us? When will we see you? Jesus replied: When you strip naked without shame and trample your clothing underfoot just as little children do, then you will look at the son of the living one without begin afraid.

When I first read Saying 37, I made this note on the page: “When the inner is as the outer – when there is nothing being hidden.” That was as I understood it then, my mind being on the admonition of Jesus to have integrity, to be the same in essence as in appearance. But perhaps that was too superficial a view? What say you, gentlemen?

We say, what was the preceding saying?

Saying 36 said don’t worry what to wear.

And this one says, don’t wear anything!

Very funny.

Perhaps look at it this way. When you divest yourself – unclothe yourself – of everything, what is left but you, alone, as you are, what you are. In your time (though not so much as the previous generation or three) “naked” is usually seen in context of sexuality, but it needn’t be. It may be more akin to words like unvarnished, plain, unconcealed. It may signify essence, in other words, not personality. Now, personality is an essential in 3D life. You cannot be getting by without appearances, want to or not. This is the Mask that Yeats spoke of, the Persona that Jung described. It comes with living, because no one can see the real you, with the best of intentions on both sides. Only outside of 3D conditions do we see essence to essence – and at first the newly arrived ex-human personality is apt to receive something of a shock!

I learned years ago that tact is useless in dealing with the non-3D.

Empathy is not, but tact is useless, true. Tact may be described as the pretense that things are not as they are. Jesus said when you are through with pretense, you are ready to see.

Only, we can’t really be through with pretense – in that sense of the word – till we are finished with 3D life, can we?

He didn’t say otherwise, but he answered their question, and you may be sure that soon or late he was understood, and this teaching-point was passed along in discussions among the community.

Well, that brings up a point. If the secret teachings of Jesus were understood and were passed along not as cryptic sayings but as understood guideposts, how did it get lost? Why don’t we know them? Why didn’t the early communities pass it to the later ones, down to our time?

You know the answer to that, and you’ve known it for decades.

That simple, then?

Not every answer is complicated. But spell it out.

I will, and yet I don’t quite see how it could have come about. I have long believed that people who had the knowledge and the level of being passed it on to those who did not have the level of being to truly understand and embody it but thought they did, and so it was a long slow process of decline. Things done without understanding – that is, first without the inner experience, then thus without understanding, soon become done by rote, and what is done by rote is soon superstition. Superstition results in belief without understanding, hence in faith only, and in calls to enforce faith, then progressive error, hypocrisy, and fanaticism (particularly in those who are unable to face their own unbelief, and project it outward).

A good summary.

But how does it happen that those who do know pass the torch to those who do not? Can’t they see the incapacity of those they are handing off to?

You are overlooking a couple of things: Time, heredity, and inertia.


All 3D things decay with time. A very slow, imperceptible decline still has significant impact over enough time.

True. we’ve seen it in education within a 50-year span.

Project that over 100, 200, 1,000 years.

Second is heredity, or we should say inheritance. People born into a family of believers are not necessarily of a level of being sufficient to understand and accept. Their own children in time will have a parent or parents only going through the motions: contradicting words and even beliefs by daily actions. This too is a cumulating process.

Finally, inertia. Not everybody is able to hold the flame. Community helps, but even in a solid community of people who have experienced, not merely believed, time and living may erode one’s ability to live at a high level, and the descent may be as imperceptible as any other form of descent.

Yes, I see it. That’s very clear.

Enough for now, as this is a second bite at the apple. No more tonight.


Saying 38

Jesus said: You often wanted to hear the words I am speaking to you. You have no one else from whom you can hear them. The days will come when you will seek me and you will not be able to find me.

Saying 38 seems self-explanatory, but must be included in the Sayings for some reason. What am I missing?

It is in three parts, not one. Look at it (look at anything, for that matter) more closely, more carefully, and you will see more, just as with the process of sinking into hieroglyphs.

All right. One, they have wanted what he provides. Two, he is the only source they have. Three, he won’t be there forever.

And the previous saying?

He will appear to them when they strip off personality and approach him in essence.

Well, not quite, though mostly. He will approach them, or they will approach him.

I see the nuance. They aren’t passive recipients.

So, putting the four ingredients together?

They need to come to essence to see him. He provides what they have wanted, and he is their only source, but he won’t be in 3D forever and – I just noticed – this may also mean that even seeking him essence to essence, they may be unable to find him. Not sure that is what is intended, but it seems a possible reading.

So you see, a little more there than meets the casual eye. So what is it that they sought and could not find, before Jesus?

Well, you know, I had slid over that too. I assumed it meant access to non-3D, but it could mean many things. You tell us.

No, what did being in the presence of Jesus provide them that they had sought and not found? What words?

You have said he came to provide clarity on our place in the 3D and non-3D.

He taught, you will remember, “as one who has authority” rather than merely explicating scriptures.

“You wanted to hear these words.” They wanted the clarity he provided.

What’s wrong with the word “guidance”?

Say some more about that?

The disciples weren’t necessarily hungry for abstract theory, nor even explanations of abstract relationships. They weren’t all unlettered fishermen, but they weren’t looking for an outdoor university, either. Jesus provided something unique, something not to be found elsewhere. What was it?

I think of the intangible but definite effect of being in the presence of a master.

Let’s say, being in the presence allows one to function at a higher level. Being at that higher level, one can perceive and understand and absorb and be transformed by what otherwise one cannot.

And so it was up to them to be transformed while he was still in 3D, or the chance would be gone.

Well and good, as far as it goes, but why would that be taught after he was gone? Wouldn’t the message by implication discourage those who hadn’t had that opportunity?

Not if the disciples teaching it were able to do for their followers what the presence of Jesus had done for them. And this would have been after Pentecost, which changed things.

Very good. After the spirit came to permanently indwell in the disciples, Jesus being gone from 3D existence for good and all, it was that indwelling presence that could from that time be available to one and all who sought it and had capacity to accept it. And this would have been the understood background of this teaching.


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