Monday, January 16, 2006

John 3:16


John 3:16 is one of the most famous texts in the history of Christianity. It is even used by some to condemn others who do not "believe" in a
particular version or vision of Jesus.

The text, in the old King James Version, translated in 1611, says, "For God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten son, so that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

God has only one Son. But how can this be? Are not all people the children of God? Yes, but, in the spiritual realm, he has directly
produced from Himself, from His own Mind ("begotten") the spiritual Son called the "Christ."

This "Christ" is shared by many, for it is an equivalent phrase with, a synonym for, the Holy Spirit. In turn, "Christ," and "Holy Spirit" are
just different names for the One, for God, for Love.

God is the deepest, most real, Mind in the cosmos. Mystics say, in fact, that God is Reality. God is the only absolute Reality, and all else exists within, and because of, His will and His Mind. The level of Mind called God is deeper even than the "collective Unconscious"-- a level containing both positive and negative, good and bad. But this Mindlevel is shared collectively, telepathically, by all human beings. Since the level of Mind that contains only the good, pure wisdom, uncontaminated Love, unsullied joy, unmixed tranquility is the Mind of God, it is even deeper. So, God, or cosmic Mind, is also a shared, or collective, Mind.

This text is not specifically about only Jesus, although it is also about him. It is about all of us, and our relationship with this deep "Spirit" within the heartmind.

Since God is Love, the text's theme is how the cosmic Mind, Love, loves the world. And this text is not about necessarily the social world of people, although it also does include that "world." The Greek word used here for "world" is kosmos, nd this does not mean only the "world" of people. It means the entire material, physical world of all of nature. This includes the world of ecology-- the world of rivers, oceans, plains,
mountains, forests, living creatures, etc.

So, this text is about the relation between the cosmic Mind and the world of nature, and that is a relationship of purest and manifested Love. "For God so loved the world..."

What is God's greatest gift to all of us, to all of nature? It is His "only-begotten Son," the Spirit of Love that dwells in the heart of each and every one of us. This Spirit is "in Love" with all of nature.

That is why very early Christians, the mystics called "gnostics" ("gnostic" means "mystic") said that nature was a Goddess, with whom God was in Love. They called her "Sophia." (NOTE: These were not the "capital G" Gnostics, cultlike groups in the first two centuries, but generic "small g" gnostics or mystics. The difference is important.)

So, God is in Love with the world! This is the world of rainbows, flowers, crystals, and stars. But it is also the world of spiders and snakes, who are not left out of God's universal Love.

The second part of the famous verse says that those who "believe" in this Christ will not "perish," but "have everlasting life." This means that, when you discover that this Spirit of Love lives within your heartmind, and know that It (He) is everlasting, you establish a mystical bond between your own soul and this Holy Spirit. In this bond of Love, because He is "everlasting," so is your deeper Self, this soul.

The actual Greek word used in this verse, however, does not literally mean "everlasting," although that also works. It literally means "timeless." (The Greek adjective is aionian.) God or Jesus does not have to promise "everlasting" life. Why? Because all souls, all life, is by nature "everlasting." So, Jesus, and God, promise a certain special kind of life to those who follow Christ. This is "timeless" life-- a life that transcends, rises above, exists outside of, time altogether! This, btw, is the literal meaning of "eternal." ("Eternal" and "everlasting" are related, but not synonymous.)

When any person, Christian or otherwise, recognizes this eternal Spirit dwelling within the Mind, that being "does not perish," but enjoys a state of pristine timeless life in which "death" is not a reality-- not even a possibility!

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