Yeshua saw some babies nursing. He said to his disciples, “These nursing babies are like those who enter the kingdom.” They said to him, “Then shall we enter the kingdom as babies?”
Yeshua said to them, “When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make eyes in place of an eye, a hand in place of a hand, a foot in place of a foot, an image in place of an image, then you will enter [the kingdom].”………..Gospel of Thomas, Saying 22
This is a saying that has tremendous import in our understanding of reality. Every great spiritual tradition has impressed upon us that what we see as the phenomenal world is a false perception. The human consciousness undergoes radical modification the moment we are born into this world. The nursing babies are an allegory to an unmodified pure consciousness. The very nature of humanity is that our consciousness comes into this world with certain evolutionary traits which are basically dominated by the mammalian brain but have a zero dimensional linkage to the world of nature.
At birth the human infant has no sense of self. He is Being. He is his being without knowledge or self-consciousness. There is no mental functioning yet. Slowly, through experiences of pleasure and pain, memory traces are retained, forming the first self-impressions (self-representations). As the infant starts taking himself to be this or that (this or that self-image) he separates from his sense of Being, because an image that is not his being. As the ego-identity and sense of self develop and become stable, the contact with Being in its various aspects and qualities is mostly lost. This is loss of the Kingdom of God. We move from our true and fundamental spirit nature into our physical-rational nature thus leading to duality of existence.
Now Yeshua instructs as to how one can regain the kingdom. All dualities must be erased.
Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism said; “Eradicating egotism and individualism from within, and erasing duality, the mortal becomes one with God”…. Sidh Gosht verse 106.
When Yeshua says “When you make the two into one” and further amplifies what He means by it, He is echoing the very concept of Advaita found in the Vedic philosophy.
For one to grasp the empty core from which all existence manifests, the alchemical union of a number of opposites existing within the individual is required. Without such unions there can be no boundary, and therefore no hollow core. Alchemy is the process by which a mortal becomes immortal, and is a very specific journey for each individual soul. The goal of alchemy is individuation- the immortalization of the soul. To individuate, which is to become whole, requires the union of polar opposites, male and female, good and evil, consciousness and matter, subject and object, self and other, and inside and out.
To unify the male and female within requires a man to become conscious of his inner female, his anima, and a woman to become conscious of her inner male, her animus.
The last part of the saying is difficult to understand for the Master seems to be making no distinction between what is the object of change and the resultant state. The physicality or the gross level of manifestation does not change but the understanding of the manifestation takes a radical change. It is very apt when we consider the last part of the saying “an image in place of an image”. Let us take the image of the deity ‘Ardhanarisvara’ (half man – half woman). It does not evoke any special meaning at the physical level but when the image is understood as the symbol of cosmic androgyny or the male- outside-of-existence, cosmic consciousness- and the female-inside-of-existence, earthly being and this union is the very process of removal of duality, then a new mental image is evoked.
Hence through this process of radical repositioning of our perception of reality from a purely physical level into an intuitive understanding of the deeper nature of all that pervades creation, including ourselves, we can gain the Kingdom of God.
Love to you all.