Swami Chidananda

Light of the World, my heart’s adoration to Thee, Lord, and prostrations again and again in utter lowliness of spirit! Glory be to Thee for ever and for ever!

Lord Jesus the Christ IS; here and now! Christ is Eternal. He has proclaimed this truth to the world not so much by words but by His glorious Resurrection. Where then is He to be sought and found? He abides where Virtue is and goodness. He is enshrined in the Divine Life of Love, Purity, Truth, Holiness, Prayer, Ceaseless Service and utter selflessness. In the heart where shine the light of Faith, Devotion, Humility, calm resignation to the Divine Will, Compassion and a genuine thirst for Righteousness, therein is Christ present, vibrant, vitally alive and radiantly manifest. O beloved Brethren! be ye also like Jesus and you shall find Christ within yourself now.

Christ is to be lived by each of us. His glorious life is for the Being and the Doing of it in and through our self even as He was and as He did. Thomas A. Kempis was one of those great souls who declared this important Law of the spiritual realm in unmistakable terms to the world. If you would obtain the Kingdom of Heaven of Light, Bliss and Immortality then you have to be Christ-like in your life and actions. The direct and clear declaration of the Saviour Himself is no less emphatic on this point; for we have it from His own blessed lips, “Not every one who saith Lord, Lord shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven: but he that doth the Will of my Father which is in Heaven.” And this Will of the Divine Father is personified in the Divine Being of Jesus Christ. To imitate Christ, to follow Him, to mould ourselves in His image and to carry out every one of His sublime admonitions in our life and actions is to do the Will of the Father in the most complete and most effective way. If you sincerely wish to belong to Christ, to be one of the holy circle of His Own, this path is the only way, for the Lord has said, “He who doth the Will of God is my brother, my sister, my mother.”

The greatest value, the real meaning and the deepest significance of Christ’s LIFE to us is the Being and the Doing of IT, i.e., in your being as He was and in your doing as HE did.

Christ has given Himself to Mankind not so much as a personality but as a way of living, as a Path. He embodies in Himself the method of the Divine Ascent. To rise from the little human personality you now possess and ascend into the Christ Consciousness is to ascend from the unreal to the Real, from darkness to Light Everlasting and from death to joyous Immortality. When you have thee Christ Ideal before you as a shining example you cannot utter the excuse “Which is the way? I do not know the way. I would fain follow it if only I knew.” The ringing assertion of Christ, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life; no one comes to Father but by me.” Yes, verily, verily is it true that growing into the Christ Ideal is the one sure and certain Key to the Kingdom of Immortality.

To bring about this transformation the Saviour has Himself given invaluable cues if only we will discern them from His words and deeds. Recall the incident of the cleaning of the Temple and the visit of the Saviour to the house of Zacchus the tax-gatherer in Jericho who resolved to atone for his past and to amply amend it by his changed mode of life. This then is the teaching, the true secret of spiritual transformation. First, cleanse thy inner nature thoroughly. Cleanse the temple of your heart of all base elements, all cruelty, deceit, bargaining spirit and worldliness. Make it a real house of God. This done, enter resolutely upon a changed course of life. Turn a new leaf completely. Salvation is yours for you have attained freedom from sin and thus qualified for immortality and eternal Bliss. This very Law of Spiritual Life, Christ expressed in a yet fuller and direct manner when he expounded the Sadhana to Necodemus the sincere Pharisee and again when he ‘suffered little children to come unto Him’ declaring, “Unless ye become like little children you cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” Yes, you have to be born again and to become pure, innocent and egoless like little children. Then and then alone will the gates of the realm of radiant bliss swing open to you. But remember the change should be real, deep and complete. Not mere outward change in profession, superficial conduct. You must become a totally “different person,” an entirely “new person!” The old self must vanish in toto.

In His own simple Person Jesus typifies this sublime Child, the simple, pure, innocent and egoless child of the Father. His trust in the Father is complete. He is the ‘beloved Son’ in Whom the Father is ‘well pleased’. To become like Him you have to FOLLOW HIM! This is the Call of the Christ-Spirit to Man. The Lord saith to us now, today even as He did in those blessed days to Philip of Bethsaida, the two thrilling Worlds, “FOLLOW ME.” This is to be, not in the sense of the mere imitation of the superficial details of His life but in His ascent on the radiant inner Path of Goodness, Love, Compassion and utter self-effacement. And for those blessed ones who are prepared to ‘Follow HIM’ He has shown the Way by three special Commandments, firstly to the Pharisee who asks, “Master which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” and then through those memorable words, during those tragic last moments of His freedom as they walk up to the fateful garden of Gethsamane on the Mount of Olives. Saith the Lord, “God is one. Thou shalt love the Lord with all thy heart, with all thy soul, with all thy mind and with all thy strength.” And then, “THOU SHALT LOVE THY NEIGHBOUR AS THYSELF.” The highest Vedantic Atma-bhava! And again, “I give you a new commandment that you love one another as I have loved you.”

O humanity! what have you done to this priceless parting appeal of Jesus? O Men, O nations, O races where now is that Love Christ left to you as His sublime heritage? To what cruel region have you relegated that peerless treasure of His Love? From whence this heritage of hatred and rapine that you have fatally embraced in the blindness of your spirit? Ye have crucified the gentle Jesus in the Golgotha of your greed-filled hearts! Even as the helpless Jerusalem is the world today in rejecting the love and Grace of God. Shall this indeed be the fate of this fair earth? No! is the emphatic reply. For as long as there are even a handful of the faithful in this world, even a handful who would joyously FOLLOW HIM, so long Hope shines bright upon the horizon of Man’s future. For through them will the Christ Spirit re-live and enlighten the earth. They will be the Resurrection of the spirit amidst modern mankind. Through the faithful few will the blessings of the Christ-Consciousness be showered upon mankind.

Christ is but His Teachings. He is embodied in His precepts. He who LIVES these precepts fulfills the main duty of his life, the sole purpose of his existence. Admiration, adoration and glorification of the Christ personality and Ideal, devoid of earnest, active, practical imitation will never, never do. The life of such a Great One is to be lived again by us. Thus and thus alone do you fulfil yourself in His Spirit.

May the World heed His Commandments, His Call! May one and all arise and FOLLOW HIM! May the Shepherd strengthen us and lead us safely from darkness and sorrow into eternal Light and Bliss Everlasting! Glory, glory be to Lord Jesus, the Christ. Amen.