Essence Of Christianity


Sri Swami Chidananda

This article is a chapter from the book Daily Swadhyaya.

To be rooted in the Divine, to be guided by the Divine, to recognise the reality of the Divine and the Divine alone, and to give secondary place to all that is other than the Divine is the sadhana,that is the great abhyasa. It is for this that strength has to be prayed for: “Deliver us from evil. Lead us not into temptation of succumbing to the influences, pulls and pressures of that which is other than the Divine, that which is other than your ideal, that which is other than the direction of your goal.”

In the midst of the many pulls and many pressures from other directions, to be what Jesus the Christ wished you to be, what Gurudev Swami Sivanandaji has clearly asked us to be, is the acid test of the authenticity and genuineness of our spirituality.

The relevance of the teachings of Jesus is not merely the church nor merely the words of the Bible. The relevance of the teachings of Jesus is the fact that He is an ever-present Presence, that He is an eternal witness, a companion who walks by us, who lives with us and who notes every movement, every thought, within and without us. It is this presence of His divine personality that has outlived His own contemporary times and is powerfully present.

Jesus the Christ is not dead; great ones who have merged in Brahman do not die. They step out of the body and continue to prevail, pervading all space as a Presence that is relevant to everyone who recognises kinship with them. The guru is eternal. The divine teachers are eternal. The relevance of Jesus and the Christianity that He taught is His divine presence here and now, and always unto worlds without end.

One who is a believer, one who makes his life, words and actions a response to the call “Follow Me,” keep as one’s touchstone or criterion for action: “If Jesus was by my side, what would I do in this particular situation? How would He have me behave at this moment, in this situation?” Your life should be an answer to this question. One should mould one’s character and conduct, life and actions on the basis of this criterion. That is the essence of Christianity. Ponder this truth on the day of Christmas Eve. May Jesus be a living factor in our lives. Then indeed Christmas will become a turning point into a new life of light and wisdom.

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