There is an universal appeal about Lord Jesus Christ that cuts across religions and belief systems. Whether you see him as a Redeemer, a Messiah or a Divine Guru, his life and his message are mesmerising to any seeker who is on a spiritual path. This appeal has been celebrated by the Greatest of Indian Spiritual masters of modern times like, Swami Vivekananda, Yogananda Paramahansa and Srila Prabhupada. Though each of these giants followed a different path within the Dharmic system, they all found inspiration and validation in the messages of Lord Jesus.
Among his many messages, one of the deepest and most profound is one that was considered blasphemous when he made the utterance and I feel is misunderstood even to this day. Lord Jesus had pronounced bravely (John 10:30)
I and The Father are One.
What could he have possibly meant by a statement so revolutionary? At the time he had said it, many in his audience steeped in a Judaic concept of God, found his words full of blasphemy and "picked up stones to stone him". A quick web search will show that mainstream Christian scholarship hasn't understood it much better even today. So while the words of the Saviour are not longer termed as blasphemous, scholars today typically try to explain this statement away as a metaphor for things such as - Unity of Purpose, Unity of Message etc.. While such explanations obviously are true in themselves, I feel that turning this statement into a metaphor completely dilutes, what I think was, the true purpose and meaning.
However it is strange that the exact words that Lord Jesus had spoken are found in the Vedic Mahavakyas. Take for instance the following Mahavakya that appeared first in Brihadaranyaka Upanishad
Aham Brahma Asmi (अहम् ब्रह्म अस्मि)
"I am Brahman - the Infinite Reality"
Doesn't it appear to be an exact translation of what Jesus had said? It most surely does.
In Vedic thought process this saying of Jesus is neither blasphemy nor mere metaphor. Instead it is an eternal and verifiable truth, and establishes the unity of the macrocosm and microcosm, and is an statement about the nature of existence as it is. Just pure unadulterated Truth. It is also absolutely clear that by the I, the Lord means the spirit soul which is really our true identity.
Understanding this Truth takes long Sadhaana, reading multiple points and counter points, mediation and self analysis until the consciousness starts to recognise its own true identity. But I can think of no better starting point than the following TEDx talk by Swami Sarvapriyananda of Ramakrishna Mission. It is a short one, please take a few minutes to hear him out...
So how was it possible that Lord Jesus echoed the eternal truth that the Vedas and Upanishads had thundered to the universe, centuries earlier, and that too at a land that far far away. Well there are many theories that a mere web search will reveal, but what I believe is that Universal Truths are Universal Truths, not just anywhere in the world but in whole of the Universe and Creation itself.
Divine inspiration, Brahma Gyaan are same whether Lord Jesus, Sri Chaitnaya, Lord Zarathustra or Swami Vivekananda delivers the message. As Sai Baba had said - Sab Ka Malik Ek
The Truth shall indeed set us free. Wish you all a Merry and Enlightening Christmas Holidays.
Jai Shri Krishna.