Monday, December 26, 2011

The Laughter of Jesus

Here is an interesting piece of thought from Osho (the late Rajaneesh).To be offended by this loud thinking is unnecessary, but to introspect conventions as fed to us will be interesting and a revelation.  

Christ's message IS rejoice and be merry. But that is not the message of Christianity. Christianity's message is: be sad, long faces, look miserable; the more miserable you look, the more saintly you are. Sometimes I really feel for poor Jesus. He has fallen in such wrong company, and I wonder how he is managing in paradise with all these Christian saints, so sad, so dull.
He was not a dull man, he was not a sad man -- he could not be. The word 'Christ' is exactly synonymous with Buddha. He was an enlightened person. He rejoiced in life, in the small things of life. He rejoiced in eating, drinking, friendship. He loved companionship, he loved the whole life.

But Christians down the ages have painted him as very sad. They have painted him always on the cross, as if for thirty-three years he was always on the cross. And my own understanding is that a man like Jesus will not die sad, even on the cross. He must have laughed before he died( if he ever did).
That's what Al-Hillaj Mansoor the Sufi mystic and poet did before he was executed in public by the fanatic Mohammedans, because he had declared: ANA'L HAQ -- "I am the Truth".  Mohammedans could not tolerate it, just as Jews could not tolerate Jesus. They killed him – tortured and chopped of his organs one after the other- but before they killed him, he looked at the sky and laughed loudly.

And that's exactly what Jesus must have done, laughed. But Christians have tried their best to depict Jesus as sad. They have made a saint out of a real authentic human being; they have cut everything. The gospels are not true stories; much has been changed, much has been reduced, much has been added. They have become mere fictions. Emperor Constantine decreed what must be the Gospel . A happy Christ is a misfit for Christians and Christianity.

Down the ages, Christians have been trying to paint Christ as  sadder. Why? -- Because all over the world religion has been dominated by a neurotic kind of people. It has been dominated by the people who are masochists, sadists. In the East too, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism -- they have all been dominated by the masochistic people, the people who enjoy torturing themselves, the people who are incapable of living life in its totality. The people who are too cowardly to live, escapists, have dominated religion up to now. These escapists have depicted Buddha as not laughing, Mahavira as not laughing.

And Christians actually say that Jesus never laughed in his life. Can you believe that? Jesus never laughed in life? He enjoyed all kinds of people, and he never laughed? Can you imagine that a man like Jesus, who was always feasting for hours with his friends, never laughed? It is inconceivable! How can you go on wining and dining without laughing? He must have joked, he must have told funny stories. They have been edited out. He was a very true man, and very courageous. He accepted Mary Magdalene as his disciple. It needs courage, it needs guts. I cannot believe that he never laughed.

We are made to cry – as soon as we are detached from the womb. Up to now doctors have been very Christian. The first thing they do is they hang the child upside down and hit him on the buttocks. Do you expect a child to laugh? This is a great welcome to the world, putting the child upside down, giving him a hit -- a good beginning, because his whole life he is going to get hit in the pants, again and again. And hanging upside down, how can he laugh? No wonder he cries!

Now there are a few doctors working in a different direction. They bring the child in a more natural way out of the mother's womb; they don't cut the umbilical cord immediately because that creates crying, that is violence. They leave the child on the mother's belly with the umbilical cord intact. They give a good bath to the child, a hot bath, they put the child into a hot tub of exactly the same temperature as it was in the mother's womb.

In the mother's womb the child is floating in water. The water has the same contents as sea water, salty. In the same salty chemical solution, of the same temperature, the child is put in the tub. He starts smiling. It is a real beautiful reception. And not with glaring tube lights... that hurts the eyes of the child. In fact, so many people are wearing glasses only because of the foolishness of the doctors. The child has lived for nine months in the mother's womb in darkness, utter darkness. Then suddenly so much light... it hurts his delicate eyes. You have destroyed something delicate in his eyes. The child should be received in a very dim light, and the light should be increased slowly, so his eyes become accustomed to the light. Naturally the child smiles at the beautiful welcome.

I can't believe Jesus not laughing at all. He lived thirty-three years and did not laugh? -- That can only be possible if he was absolutely perverted, absolutely pathological, and ill. Something must have been wrong if he didn't laugh. But nothing is wrong with him; something is wrong with the followers. They depict their saints, their messiahs, their Prophets, as very serious, somber, sad, just to show that they are above the world, that they are beyond, that they are not worldly people. Laughter seems shallow, seems unspiritual.

Although the message of Christmas is rejoice and be merry, still there is sadness, because the whole of Christianity teaches you to be sad. It is not a life-affirming religion, it is life-negative. It is much more life-negative than Hinduism, much more life-negative than Judaism. It has no sense of humor at all. And a religion without a sense of humor is ill, pathological. It needs psychological treatment.

Peter, standing in the crowd, looked up at Jesus on the cross. As he watched, he distinctly saw Jesus motioning him forward.
"Pssst, hey Peter, come here," said the Lord.
As Peter moved forward, two Roman guards blocked his way and beat him till he fell to the ground.
A few moments later, Peter, bruised and bleeding, looked up and saw Jesus again motioning him forward.
"Pssst, hey Peter, come here!"
Looking around, Peter noticed that the crowd was gone and so were the Roman soldiers. He moved closer to Jesus, "Yes, Lord, what is it? What is it you want?"
"Hey Peter," said Jesus. "Guess what? I can see your house from here!"


kavita said...

I like this laughter of Jesus , feel more closer to him this way .

Engram said...

I guess you are right for it is difficult for me to accept that a person lives 33 years and has not smiled. Psst.. Peter i can see your house from here... made me smile too !!!!

Balachandran V said...

The very basic idea of religion is to make the follower insecure, uncomfortable and guilty about the latent freedom that life gives. Because those who have experienced freedom will not need the crutches of organized religion - where would that leave all these priest guys? Only those who have no belief in him/herself need to believe in an external superpower.

Shilpa Garg said...

Some very interesting and enlightening thoughts!!
I can see your house from here!... This projects Jesus in a totally different light!! :)

Kalpana said...

Very nice Anil.. Even I use to contemplate on the same but could never think the way you have put up everything.

I agree with B.. All religions teach the same.

Happy Kitten said...

Being a Christian, I have never thought this way... to me, Jesus shall always remain a true friend.. and which friend has failed to laugh with you :)

Maybe it is the way Jesus was introduced to me as a child or somehow this is the Jesus that appealed to my fav hymn has always been: I have found a friend in Jesus, he is everything to me...

adithyasaravana said...

Yes Indeed, How could he not have laughed?
He attended a family gathering,
a wedding,with his disciples.
There would have been lots of mirth and happiness around there
and Jesus made sure that the guests never ran out of wine..
that was his first miracle..

whatever happened later were the scheme of things where he was nailed on the cross.
but till then Jesus was friendly, happy, and ridiculed the societal hypocrisy..

this theory applies to Ramayana too
where seetha is an embodiment of humilty and suffering, where as she had her share of romantic moments with Rama. While telling about the golden deer, she tells that she could keep it as a pet, or kill and carry the hide to ayodhya to show to others..Such naive expressions.But what remains at the end of the story is the suffering she endured through out the life..which most of them associate with..
Such is the designs of human mind..

Meera Sundararajan said...

Anil this is a brilliant piece! Have you read the book "Rozabal line". It is fiction but discusses something like this! Christianity and Christ as you say appear to be two different things. One is an interpretation while the other is the leader- Christ was known for his compassion and was probably executed because he was a threat to the jewish leaders due to his huge fan following. Regarding Mary Magdelene- there are many theories.. but I am not getting into that

anilkurup said...

@ Kavita,

Many years ago I saw the picture of a laughing Jesus on the front cover of some western magazine.That not only fascinated but proved to be a strong votary of iconoclasm.
I agree with your point.

@ Engram,
The spirit of Christ has been made robotic, and that is the way he must be if the faith in his name has to survive. Strange indeed.
Yes how could have a person lived for three decades without ever smiling, laughing?

@ Balachandran,

You are one among the minority and an apostate to boot. I need not have to welcome you as you have already been there now for years.

@ Shilpa Garg,

Yes indeed the wisdom and lectures of Rajaneesh are provoking - thought provoking to the ones who would like to think and blasphemy to the feeble.

@ Kalpana,

The idea and words are mostly credited to the late Rajaneesh.

@ Happy Kitten,

Sure a friend indeed. But why not a smiling , happy friend who passes all the positive energy to you?

@ Adityasaravanan,

It applies indeed to the eternal tragedy queen ( mother of even the late MeenaKumari), "Sita!.

But then Sita is a character in a mythical fiction. There is no historical proof to say convincingly that she was real. A wonderful and fascinating character portrayed by the great sage. In the case of Jesus that is not so. He was a historical figure and his biography decided by many of his fellow men to be finally chosen by a converted Roman Emperor.

Perhaps like a character of fiction words were attributed to him.

@ MeeraSundarajan,

I must remind you the idea and much of the words are of the late Rajaneesh. I have not read the book you mentioned. But have read the Penguin publication- the book "Jesus Lived in India.A plausible theory vehemently shun by the establishment.

....Petty Witter said...

Interesting thought.

Daniel said...

Brilliant piece Anil Uncle!! This is a great Christmas gift:)

Betty Manousos@ Cut and Dry said...

here's wishing you a very happy new year and the best for 2012!!

be safe and celebrate!

Manjan(ಮಂಞನ್) said...

Before getting into the "laughing Jesus", it would be interesting to analyze what he might have actually looked.

anilkurup said...

@ Petty Witter/ Daniel/Betty/ Manjan,

Yes I agree it will be interesting.
Interesting to analyse what he really looked like. However though that cannot be verified beyond any doubt , we may rather question the lack of rationale in depicting him as an eternal melancholy man.

When some one is forcibly burdened the troubles of the world and all our sins certainly he will feel and look down cast.

Perhaps that is the way the faithful would like him to be. Pity, to deny him his rightful gaiety.

anilkurup said...

@ Petty Witter/ Daniel/Betty/ Manjan,

Yes I agree it will be interesting.
Interesting to analyse what he really looked like. However though that cannot be verified beyond any doubt , we may rather question the lack of rationale in depicting him as an eternal melancholy man.

When some one is forcibly burdened the troubles of the world and all our sins certainly he will feel and look down cast.

Perhaps that is the way the faithful would like him to be. Pity, to deny him his rightful gaiety.

Manjan(ಮಂಞನ್) said...

I guess it's a matter of interpretation when one deals with irrational institutions like religion. Maybe a pointless exercise. As far as I can see, the European Christianity is a vibrant religion. You can find arguments that the concept of saints for every occasion is drawn from their pantheistic world-view. Pantheistic tradition can have gods for every emotion and every phenomenon. It even has a saint for love, making it rather low-brow. It's not as if only Jesus defines Christianity. Maybe sad looking Jesus is but one aspect of Christianity.

Similar is the case with Buddhism. The pagan East Asian tradition has created the Laughing Buddha.

Perhaps, Rajaneesh's words would makes sense with Islam. However, the popularity and probably spread of Islam in the sub-continent owes it to the Sufism which again celebrates life.

Anonymous said...

I don't know who you have been reading or listening to but dower Christ is not! If true Christians have long faces then they have had their joy of the Lord stolen.

anilkurup said...

@ Manjan,

No person with sensible thought process can deny your statement about Sufism and its aura propping the orthodox version of Islam. But that is also why the bigoted ones despise Sufism.

But honestly I feel for Christ as he seems to have been constricted by the laity and the clergy.


Thanks for dropping by and passing comment. However I really do not understand your first sentence.
Perhaps Christ has been robbed off his joy by the long face laity and the clergy?

Happy Kitten said...

Anil: to many Jesus is what you said..
a smiling , happy friend who passes all the positive energy to you...

Otherwise, his death on the cross should me the most depressing moment for those who believed / blv in him and in turn to give up complete hope on this life itself... so there had to be something in his messages/life that gave hope and a positive outlook towards this life..

[not sure if I made any sense :)]

Personally for me, he is this smiling/knowing frnd who has never failed to answer some of my difficult questions.

and what is keeping you away from the blog this year?

anilkurup said...

@ Happy Kitten,

Let me confess that the subject was broached not from the angle of a person of faith, belief or practitioner. Because faith has this way of what is known as beyond reason or explanation. So we leave that part and the people who so believe to themselves.
This little subject is for any one who can see things impassioned.
It is indeed much discomforting to desist from conditioning.

You said that Christ and his philosophy gives you ample positive energy and vibes . That in itself is celebration of what he may have stood for , happiness, peace , love and affection sans frontiers, creed and faith.

By the way , I just feel blank and at the same time too much in the head that I find it difficult to put into words. Well a phase that happens sometimes.