Yogi Jesus

What is a yogi? It's someone who seeks to unify themselves with their higher self. Whose body is their secret lab. Someone who purifies themselves daily so that the Universe can pour into them.To be a yogi is not just an Indian concept. Soul Training is part of every tradition and geographical context. And it seems that almost every spiritual tradition or sect has its own proprietary take on Jesus. Some say he was a revolutionary. Some say he was a World Teacher, and some say he was God incarnate.

A new theory posits that there can't be a thought without the language to express it. I (Ravi) disagree. When I was 8 I saw the movie Kings of Kings with Jeffrey Hunter playing the role of Jesus. I was rapt, which caused much bemusement among my middle-class Jewish family, but there was a deep sense of recognition for something I had no name for and which I now know was the portrayal of a Spiritual Teacher.The story that Jesus enacted, one of martyrdom for our sins, death and resurrection is a Universal constant. One theory is that all great World Teachers Krishna, Zoraster, Buddha, Lao Tzu, etc. are the same Being who incarnates and takes on the form and delivers the message most appropriate for that time/place. Some scholars have written that there's no definite proof that the historical Jesus existed although the Roman historians Josephus and Tacitus, who lived at the time Jesus was alive both mention him (although these mentions may be later accretions). There may be scant historical evidence but sometimes something miraculous and momentous happens that creates a resonance forever in the blood memory of all of us.

Overall, it seems obvious that all of the conceptualizations of Jesus are more about the people doing the conceptualizing than Jesus himself. When Jesus was alive some people gave up everything to follow him, some people dismissed him, and some people went out of their way to discredit or thwart him. If he were alive today it would be no different. Great Teachers are galvanizers and they tend to stir things up. For a deeper understanding, we need to differentiate between Jesus and Christ. Jesus was a person in a body who experienced the world just like all of us, although probably with a much larger vision.

Most people try to understand "Jesus" with their emotions and "Christ" with their intellect. Jesus needs to be understood with the heart (devotion) and Christ (Spirit) can only be known through direct experience. In the Aquarian Age the "second coming" will probably not entail Jesus sailing down on a cloud to usher in the "end of days." It will be an internal process of awakening. Many great yogis including Yogananda consider Christ Consciousness to be synonymous with Kundalini (Spirit in Flower). Jesus is quoted as saying, "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through me."

Many people use this to contend that belief in Jesus / Christianity is the only valid path to salvation. Yogis tells us that to realize Truth and flower in Spirit, Kundalini (Christ Consciousness) needs to blossom. In fact Yogi Bhajan mentioned that St. Peter''s staff was said to have flowered, which is a symbolic representation of the Kundalini experience. There are many ways to initiate this process but ultimately it's a dispensation of Grace. This form of Grace is the birthright of every human no matter where they're from or what path or process they follow. There are many quotes attributed to Jesus that are very recognizable from a yogic perspective. For instance, "If your eye be single your body will fill with light," this is a perfect description of Third Eye opening. Or: "For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

The derivation of yoga is the Sanskrit word for "yoke," meaning to yoke ourselves to our higher selves. Jesus is saying that he has laid the groundwork, all that's left to be done is to follow his precepts (turn karma into dharma). As a person, in a body, specific types of training are necessary to allow Spirit to shine through. Many traditions and researchers cite a network of inner / mystery schools throughout the Mid-east, Egypt and India. It is said that Jesus was an Essene (as described in the Dead Sea Scrolls), a mystical sect of Judaism. They wore white, were vegetarians, and were disciplined in their use of meditation and prayer. It's also said that Jesus studied in the various mystery schools and mastered all of the Spiritual techniques they taught. Ultimately we'll never know for sure but some have said that they've visited monasteries/ ashrams where records exist of a great Teacher named Yeshua who visited and taught there. It's said that there are written descriptions of this Teacher holding an initiation pose for 48 hrs.! Until we get an all-access pass to the Akashic records we'll never know for sure. We feel that no one could've made such an impact unless they were a remarkable Teacher. And there's no doubt that Jesus was a Teacher, a Spiritual Teacher.

A Teacher with a capital "T" is more than just a yoga teacher. It's synonymous with what in the yoga tradition is called a "Sat Guru." This is a title given specifically to an enlightened sage or Saint whose life's purpose is to guide those who feel an inner calling on the Spiritual path, the summation of which is the realization of Self through the realization of God. Sat Gurus don't grow on banyan trees. They are World Teachers who manifest very rarely, often when suffering among a certain demographic is so acute the Universe cannot refuse their prayers. It's said that it takes generations of prayer and sacrifice for a Great Soul to incarnate on earth. In the Bible Jesus says to a paralyzed man, "Thy sins are forgiven," and the man was miraculously healed. If we replace the word "sin," with karma, the concept becomes much more understandable. There is another story in the Bible in which one of Jesus'