This chapter discusses what initiation and being reborn in Spirit mean. It also reveals the role of the teacher in more detail and what it means to walk the Path. This chapter also reveals the nature of the soul and mentions the two main elements of the Path: Sound and Light.
Jesus upon meeting the Pharisee called Nicodemus explains him the Path, the only way of returning Home to God. He obviously does not understand what Jesus is saying, from his responses it is obvious that he is not ready to be ‘reborn again’.”… verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” … “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”
From this chapter I learnt that the soul has two faculties: “that of seeing and that of hearing within” . So “we can hear the Spirit and see the Light”. It is important because we must attach ourselves to the Sound Current in order to be able to travel Home. By withdrawing our consciousness to the eye centre where we can see the Light and hear the ‘wind’ of the Spirit.
Though it sounds very simple, it is also very personal to every one of us. Words just don’t do it! The reason, I believe it is never described in more detail and the reason why Jesus uses the metaphor of the ‘wind’ is because we all hear the ‘wind’ differently, as it should be. Seeing the Light and hearing the Spirit within is a personal experience through which, we meet ourselves as Souls since the Light we experience within is the Light of our own Soul. As far as my observations go, inner experiences are set up in a way that is recognizable for us depending on our faculties and personal background. The sharing of a teacher, like Jesus, are empty words until one realizes thought personal experiences their true meaning.
I think it is easy to fall into the trap of creating our own inner experiences upon hearing the teachings, but one can get over such illusions and start allowing real experiences to appear even though they may look or sound very different from what has been suggested by our teachers.
Since, I am a thinker and kinaesthetic person (mostly audial), my experiences tend to be of ‘acts’ (the physical and emotional resonance of some action I am involved in or observe) and ‘messages’ that I resonate with. I also suspect that our inner experiences of Sound and Light changes with time.
“The wind bloweth wheer it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. “
It is such a beautiful sentence. This sentence is the proof that the ‘wind’ we hear within is unique to ourselves. We do not know where it comes from or where it goes to, it is unfathomable and unique.
Beas then compares the two masters: Nicodemus, who could perform rituals and ceremonies but did not have true spiritual experiences to Jesus, the Mystic, who came to revive the teachings of Moses, whose teachings from 1200 years before, were reduced into those rituals and ceremonies now performed by Nicodemus and his followers. What Mystics know and teach is not book bound but based on personal experiences. “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness.”
Just as Jesus explains it to Nicodemus – and it is also mentioned numerous times throughout Beas’ book and in the Gospel according to John – a soul can only return Home via contacting a living teacher and being initiated by him. “And no man hath ascended up to heavens, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.”
Beas explains that only those can be guided back Home and merge back into God who have faith, those who believe in the Mystic, and those who are willing to live the teachings without questioning them. “He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”
“For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” Our greatest sin, that we are condemned for, is our separation from God, and it is not God or the allotted Mystic who condemns us but we ourselves by our feeling unworthy for His love (the very thing that actually separates us from Him). “We are already condemned in this world. What greater condemnation can there be than being separated from the Father and living in misery! Saints come to redeem us. They come with mercy and grace, to help and guide us back to the Father. We should have faith and confidence in them.”
As I am reading various books related to the Path and learning more and more about the various teachers of the Path, I am realizing the role of a teacher and how this role is the same but also adjusted to a particular time in history or a place in earth.
Growing up during the ‘Big Brother’ type socialist regime of Eastern Europe made me become very self-protective and cautious when it comes to trusting another human being, particularly those in power. A teacher, whose guidance I could follow, must be authentic and available. Authenticity is derived from the honest account of experiences and transparency. Availability comes with the job of a true Mystic. Being available means that my teacher is devoted to and invested in my development and liberation, and he is available to support me on my journey according to our agreement.
As a minister I wish to cherish these two qualities: authenticity and availability.
In my opinion, the most important teacher is we ourselves. As we follow and live the teachings of the Mystic we attach ourselves to the Spirit within that takes us to our own Soul, the unique spark of God, who we truly are. One of the reasons, I am doing this course is to meet the teacher/shepherd inside of me, my true nature, my Essence, my Soul who is a spark of God. I am convinced that one cannot shepherd others until s/he becomes his/her own teacher.
Recently I became aware that my ministership is most importantly for me and if I am ‘lucky’ enough I may be able to extend my ministership to those who show interest in what I have to say. And if there is not one person interested I need to find the way to be contented with shepherding myself.
Then, Bear discusses how the disciples are allocated to each teacher and how the teachers recognize their disciples.
“A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven.”
According to Beas “whatever we receive, we receive as a result of the Father’s will.”… “The seeker is moved through the Father’s love -…. – in order to search for a living Master. The Father creates an urge in those marked by Him to merge back into Him: and unless that urge is within them, they will never even think about the Farther. God attracts us by His love, through the Master.”
“We do not get it by our own effort or with our intellect. Only by His grace do we get it, and then these impurities are automatically burned or consumed. No matter how much credit we may claim, it is all His gift, and He has His own ways and means to give us that fire of love.”
Sometimes, it is hard from me to admit, that wherever I am in my life it is the result of my relationship with Him and there is not much I can claim fro myself from all of this. At the same time, I often feel helpless in creating all I think should be best for me. It is hard for me to see the perfection of my existence in God’s Grace. I still often struggle with letting go and letting God.
It is, however, very touching to know that I am not a lost cause no matter what may happen that shows otherwise. I am directed and led though the wilderness towards Him.
Then John discusses, through a sweet parable of the Bride and the Bridegroom, our personal relationship with God.
“Through this parable John points out that Jesus is the bridegroom and the Lord is the Bride. Jesus has become one with the Lord through the initiation that John has performed …. (and he ) is carrying out the will of the Lord … “
The Bride and the Bridegroom are images used often among people on the Path. One famous example is Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. I also experience different aspects of weddings in my meditations which I suspect are signs of my getting closer to uniting with God.
Laater there is some talk about Johns recognizing Jesus as his successor and being very happy about it. And there is some explanation of the nature of the teacher “the Master comes from heaven, he always talks of heaven and peace, he always creates the longing and desire in us to go back to our Father …”
Later chapters discuss further how much the sharing of a true teacher comes from their personal experiences.
Questions: How does the Soul evolve? How does it get to that level of consciousness so it can be called Home? How does the Father guide the soul if it had no recollection of the Father? In what way is the Father or the Holy Spirit is present in the life of a soul who is completely lost to the World and is not marked yet?