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Mothers are of various kinds [Don't idolise and idyllise all mothers, then] (Markandeya Purana, v. 17).

Not only mothers, but kings and pretenders too come in different packages and with different content. They are of various sorts.

Cry out, and get no answer

It might pay to look under the hood and check if the engine is good.

The guru Yogananda teaches to wail a lot for Divine Mother and She will come. In teaching it, he disregards several Bible warnings. One is in 1 Sam 8 (below). That God will answer king-worshipping Jews (maybe Jesuans) in distress, could be only a remote possibility, according to the Old Testament's Judge Samuel.

We may put our talents into good enough uses, although there are many reasons to be reserved in the public sphere. For example, Jesus performed miracles and taught without being asked to do it. He used his talents and worked miracles in the public domain in Judea and was executed. However, later his reputation rose and swelled like a balloon and soared away from the earth-bound Hebrew "messiah", king. At the time of Jesus, the Jews hoped for a messiah, a king to free them from the Romans.

In 1 Sam8 and 10:1 the meaning of messiah is laid bare. "Jewish king is bad!" That aspect of messiah is seldom spoken of in the public realm of ceremonies, pomp, demagogy and buttering up to royalty, though.

The Lord told Samuel to warn the people who wanted a king like their neighbouring peoples, warn them solemnly and let them know what the king would do to them. He would bleed them, in essence, for the messiah (king) they craved would take their sons and daughters, the best of their fields and vineyards and olive groves and give them to his attendants. Your male and female servants and the best of their cattle and donkeys and flocks he would also take for his own use, and "you yourselves will become his slaves. When that day comes, you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, but the Lord will not answer you in that day." (1 Sam 8, extracts)

Letting subjects bleed, taking hold of people and possessions and enslaving many - in other words: Hebrew king. This suggests that if you first succumb to a Messiah, you will bleed and be enslaved and be stuck, no matter how whacky the goings get. The first Messiah-king got mad, David was a whoring one, and Samuel made the dynasty fall. Was it wise or otherwise, one may come to wonder. (1 Sam 10 etc.)

Now, what is so good about "King Christ"? Messiah is Christ in Greek translation. In Self-Realization Fellowship (SRF) they seem to disregard or ignore that "Great King Messiah is bad" and other things that Judge Samuel warned the people of when they came to him and wanted a king, no matter what warnings they got.

So why did followers of Jesus strive to say he was a Messiah, without telling how bad the king (Messiah) would be for his people? Why did they disregard the Scripture's warnings? Later, about 1900 years later, the Hindu swami Yogananda arrived in the United States and jumped on the Messiah bandwagon after about five years there, says Marshall Govindam. It paid off in some ways initially:

After five years of effort in America, beginning in 1925 . . . Yogananda began to modify and adapt his teachings to the West . . . to overcome the . . . resistance of Christians who were suspicious of the foreign teachings of a Hindu swami. As a result, Yogananda began to enjoy remarkable popularity. . . . However, . . . most readers of his "Autobiography" . . . are left with many unrealistic expectations. [♀Link]

In ancient times, all kings were not as bad as the kings of the Israelites. In fact, the Egyptian faraohs (kings) were looked up to as gods after they had passed away.

Christs and Christlike Ones in Yogananda's Teachings

Murky Messiah use

Paramahansa Yogananda (1893-1952), the Americanised famous yogi talked big, and listed four Christs among the SRF gurus:

  • Unknown: referred to as Babaji in America, and Nagaraj. - "Babaji ... Yogi-Christ of modern India". [Pa 305 and opp. 304] - "Babaji ... deathless guru". [Pa 346] - [Yogananda on Babaji and Christ:] "... these two fully illumined masters ... one without a body". [Pa 307]
  • Known: Shyama Charan Devi Sharman Lahiri (Lahiri Baba, Lahiri Mahasaya) (1828-95) - Yogananda: "Prophets like Christ and Lahiri Mahasaya". [Pa 283n]. Also: "Lahiri Mahasaya ... and many other Yogi-Christs had blessed the soil." [Pa 95]
  • Better-known: Yukteswar (1855-1936) - Yogananda: "Yukteswar, a modern Yogi-Christ". [Pa 194]
  • Others, perhaps including the carnal father of Paramahansa Yogananda, He is grouped under "christs and christlike souls" by Yogananda.

Other Christs and Christlike Souls, as Yogananda-claimed

Is the term 'christ' a misnomer? Jesus did not say he was a Christ - it was added to his name long after he was buried. (Bart D. Ehrman. How Jesus Became God (2014))

Eager to promote his kriya yoga system abroad, Yogananda said his line of yoga-gurus were Christs too (above). In an article from 1937 - "Yogavatar Shyama Lahiri Mahasaya's Ladder of Self-Realization, for Salvation for All". Inner Culture, March 1937 - he says that Shyama Lahiri (Lahiri Mahasaya) raised many Christs and Yukteswar is praised as "the greatest disciple" among them. Other Lahiri disciples champion another than Yukteswar. All of Lahiri Mahasaya's disciples - except Yukteswar - treated Panchanan Bhattacharya (1853-1919) as Lahiri's chief disciple, says Swami Satyeswarananda [◦There is more here] (Wikipedia, "Panchanan Bhattacharya")

It seldom pays to be taken in.

Now, here is Yogananda's list anyway, and oddly enough without Panchanan Bhattacharya, considered by all other Lahiri disciples to be the chief disciple among all the yogi-christs and christlike souls he tells of:

YOGANANDA The Guru-preceptor of Sri Yukteswarji . . . was a super-man . . . the Yogavatar of India, the incarnation of God who . . . showed others how, by following [his] methods of meditation, they could bring about a sure, scientific union (Yoga) with God . . .

. Sh[y]ama Charan Lahiri Mahasaya, by his exemplary life, created many Christs and gave the step-by-step methods of Self-Realization (the Ladder of Self-Realization) which enable all to climb to the high abode of complete freedom. Lahiri Mahasaya . . . could perform all the miracles of Jesus Christ."

Yogananda also writes:

Yogavatar Lahiri Mahasaya created the following Christlike souls, some of them really possessing the highest Christ-consciousness:

1. My Master, Swami Sri Yukteswarji . . . with Christlike miraculous powers.

2. Bindya Bhakat of Benares . . .

3. Swami Pranabananda, who could materialize or dematerialize his body, a feat actually witnessed by myself.

4. Ram Gopal Babu of Ranbajpur, a great yogi, who meditated forty years in a cave for eighteen hours a day.

5. Bhupen Sanyal, a great teacher . . .

6. Swami Kebalananda Shastri Mahasaya, a Yogi of rare quality.

7. Swami Keshabananda, a man of great renunciation.

8. Sri Bhagavati Charan, my earthly father, very high in morality and Self-Realization.

9. Abinash Babu.

Lahiri Mahasaya's teaching is the Second Coming of Christ . . . in actuality. [Notes 1 and 2]

The task at hand is to decide if a Messiah is a slave-taker, someone who makes many beneath him bleed, a taker of property and servants, and so on, or whether the Messiah-king is good, against the Bible warnings. Labels and misnomers are many in the human world. See how sound and fit they are if you can. Demagogy is not fit for researchers and fair people.

COMMENT. It is good to make an effort to evaluate great claims with skill and aplomb, and also to consult seasoned experts if you manage to get to any. Many are getting duped by big, but unsubstantial claims and propaganda, and deprogramming may not work full well.

An enemy of his people, the ancient messiah

Yukteswar disciple, Yogananda, was an emotionalist, and goes on and on against gospel sayings while claiming to represent "original Christianity as taught by Jesus (!)". The idea is a misconstruction, as there was no such thing. Jesus had only Jewish followers, and said his teachings, salvation and healing ministry were for Jews only. The Bible scholar Geza Vermes sums it up:

Fl. During his days of preaching, Jesus of Nazareth addressed only Jews, "the lost sheep of Israel" (Matthew 10:5; 15:24). His disciples were expressly instructed not to approach gentiles or Samaritans (Matthew 10:5). On the few occasions that Jesus ventured beyond the boundaries of his homeland, he never proclaimed his gospel to pagans, nor did his disciples do so during his lifetime. The mission of the 11 apostles to "all the nations" (Matthew 28:19) is a "post-Resurrection" idea. It appears to be of Pauline inspiration and is nowhere else found in the Gospels (apart from the spurious longer ending of Mark [Mark 16:15], which is missing from all the older manuscripts). Jesus' own perspective was exclusively Jewish; he was concerned only with Jews. (Vermes 2012).

Christianity arose only decades after Jesus-for-Jews-only had been executed as a criminal and buried (see Acts 15 and 21:25).

Yogananda applies another definition of the term 'Christ' than the traditional, conservative Christian one, where Jesus forewarns against other messiahs than himself, liken false teachers to ravenous wolves, and insists he is the only shepherd for his flock.

Yogananda had to ignore that, and that the old meaning of Christ (messiah) is "oil-anointed" (Messiah), a sign of being made king of Israel (1 Samuel 8), and his people's enemy too: "You will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, and the Lord will not answer you in that day [1 Samuel 8:18]." Yogananda just mingled two separate frames of reference as it suited him, to the loss of biblical meanings concerning the Father, Holy Spirit, the soul and more. [There is more]

Greatness by suspect titles can be a double-edged sword, and fulsome, overdone praise might signify that one's overall conditions are not good, among other things we do not like to rake up.

Wreckers

Little blasphemers may not be hanged.

Mockery is no joke. (German).

Blasphemy requires more than a lousy mouth.

Fl. "When ... individuals [with moral blemishes] are made aware of their failings, they find hundreds of excuses and recondite reasons for every flaw and deficiency, concluding that the person who brought the matter to their attention was mistaken in thinking of it as a flaw and fault." [Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn of Lubavitch (1990, ch 3]

Contents


Wreckers, Literature  

Beyer, Horst and Annelies. Sprichwörter Lexikon. Weyarn: Seehamer, 1996.

Ehrman, Bart D. How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee. New York: HarperOne, 2014.

O'Collins, Gerard S. J. Christology: A Biblical, Historical, and Systematic Study of Jesus. 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.

Pargiter, Frederick Eden, tr. Markandeya Purana. Calcutta: The Asiatic Society, 1904.

Schneersohn of Lubavitch, Yosef Yitzchak. The Principles of Education and Guidance. New York: Kehot Publication Society, 1990.

Vermes, Geza. From Jewish to Gentile: How the Jesus Movement Became Christianity. Biblical Archaeology Review (BAR) 38:06, Nov/Dec 2012.

Notes

[NOTE 1] Yogananda, Paramahansa. "The Direct Line of Great Masters". In Inner Culture, March 1937.
http://www.yoganandarediscovered.com/jaitruth/Mdl.html

[NOTE 2] Yogananda, Paramahansa. "Yogavatar Shyama Lahiri Mahasaya's Ladder of Self -Realization, for Salvation for All". In Inner Culture, March 1937.
http://www.yoganandarediscovered.com/jaitruth/Mlml.html

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