The Kingdom of God
How to enter the Kingdom of God
o enter the kingdom of God means to reestablish the relationship between God and man and put it in order. That is to identify the will of man with that of God. It is to become one with God while emptying the ego in attitude, on the one hand, and filling it with the motivation of life's integration on the other. (It is to erase the ego oriented impulses and participate in the integrated body of God.) It is to identify the ego with the genuine will of the universe by thoroughly excluding the inflation and expansion of the ego. (The tendency to inflate the ego causes attachment to things that hinders smooth flow of consciousness.)
Then, one has to know the contents of life's integration to which one can conform. This recognition leads us to the understanding of the paradigm of Christ. By taking away the attachment to phenomenal things, detached progression will be opened in the conscious world.
The picture, the Paradigm of Christ statically clarifies the transformation process of human attitude towards the unconsciousness or the deeper consciousness. But it also dynamically encourages the transformation of human motivation towards the integration of life. From the Paradigm's spectrum, we can easily imagine the integration of light, which, in turn, encourages our accomplishment of personality integration. Holding the same motivation with God, one can unite his consciousness with God. Therefore Jesus says in his Lord Prayer; Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.
The psychological mechanism of the kingdom of God
One can enter the kingdom of God, if all one's mind becomes as purely integrated as God. And to enter the kingdom of God and to find life is the same. First, we must confirm the metaphorical equality between 'the kingdom of God'and 'life'. 'The kingdom of God' is the place where the rule of God prevails. The place under the rule of God is where the integration of life exists. This is the place of the archetype of the Self; for the Self is assumed to be integrated and transcendent Spirit. We can interpret the words, "He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for my sake will find it." as follows; He who finds his egoistic desire will lose his Self, and he who loses his ego will find his Self. If one is united with the integrated body, one finds one's life and enters the kingdom of God. On the other hand, if one attaches one's personal desire or one's ego, one is cast the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth.
Mark 2:18 Now John's disciples and the Pharisees were fasting; and people came and said to him, "Why do John's disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?" 19 Jesus said to them, "The wedding guest cannot fast while the bridegroom is with them, can they? As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast. 20 The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast on that day."
Before entering the kingdom of God, the container to accept such a motivation has to be prepared. Otherwise, it cannot maintain such an intention. Containers are created by fasting of John. When bridegroom is around, the wedding guests do not fast. Fasting of John is the metaphor of arranging the egoless attitude. Eating is, on the other, the transformed energy caused by that egoless attitude. So, when this energy is lost, one's mind has to take an egoless attitude again. The gospel's parables are, in reality, consistently depicting such a psychological transformation, Although 2:20 may give us an impression that when Jesus dies, at that time the disciples will fast, it does not represent a literal and historical occurrence, which does not carry universality. For example, in Matthew's gospel, when Jesus died, 27:52 Tombs were also opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised. 53 After his resurrection they came out of the tombs and entered the holy city and appeared to many. Once the concept of life is realized in one's mind, one can understand the philosophical truth previously hidden. For that mind, the philosophers who spoke of such truths are now vitalized. (In Zen, there is a similar saying that your eye blows and past masters eye blows are connected with each other.) The mind which realized the concept of life is the sacred city, where there is a temple not build by hands. Additionally, another way of fasting by the scribes and Pharisees are hard one, for it cannot gain any spiritual food.
Mark 2:22 "And no one put new wine into old wine skins; if he does, the wine will burst the wineskins, and the wine is lost, and so are the wineskins; but new wine is for fresh wineskins."
The fresh wineskins for the wine are the attitude towards the integration. The formation of the firm container is the long term process of following the teachings of Jesus and the acting according to the teachings. The more the fasting of John is habituated, the more the coming of the Son of man is also habituated.
Life is the place where God rules. The kingdom of God is the metaphor of life. The life in this sense is the integration of life, as I am the way, the life and the truth (John). Once one enters the kingdom of God, one obeys the rule of God and identifies oneself with the law, and then become one with the will of God. Only through this, one is liberated.
So the kingdom of God can be entered only if one follow the rule of God. This rule is manifested in the passage of the great commandment. This is the requirement to enter the kingdom of God. Mark 12:28 One of the scribes came near and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered well, he asked him, "Which commandment is the first of all? "29 Jesus answered, "The first is, ' Hear. O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; 30 you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.' 31 The second is this, ' You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these." Then the scribe said to him, "You are right, Teacher; you have truly said that he is one, and besides him there is no other'; 33 And to love him with all the heart, with all the understandings, and with all the strength,' and 'to love one's neighbor as oneself,' --- this is much more important than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices." 34 When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, "You are not far from the kingdom of God."
To love your God and your neighbor is, in attitude and in motivation, to create the integrated body in accordance with the spectrum's integration.
According to Plato's Timaios, the purpose of the universe is the process of persuasion by God to the creature to be under his aim. To enter the kingdom of God is to enter positively into the commandment of God. But this is not easy. One's ego has to be persuaded to lose it to something invisible, and besides to the right direction to this invisible. Matthew 7:13 Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road is easy, that leads to destruction, and there are many who take it. 14 For the gate is narrow and the road is hard that leads to life, and there are few who find it. The paradigm of Christ is the tool that let us in there without going to wrong direction. First, one understands it as a concept and then proves it with experience.
Kant's categorical imperative, or absolute moral law is much the same as this motivation: "Act as if the maxim from which you act were to become through your will a universal law." A "universal" in this case means the good for everyone. This is an unconditional moral law that applies to all rational beings (men) and is independent of any personal motive or desire.
Kant called a society to be followed by such a supreme law of the categorical imperative as the kingdom of end. Kant's notion of the kingdom of end is perfectly applied to the motivation. Kingdom of God and the kingdom of end are parallel entity. Such an accuracy of grasping the ultimate nature of reality made Kant a monumental figure in the history of metaphysics.
Parables of the kingdom of God
Parables of Jesus are meant to let us understand how to maintain and increase the mind's integration. According to our analyses of the gospel, the kingdom of God was nothing but an integrated being. In the case of interpreting the parables of the kingdom of God announced by Jesus, we must pay attention to what kind of essential things are referred to in relation to the integrated being.
1. The spirit which passed through the integrated being (cf. the first conversion; John the Baptist and its after effect)
1-1 The spirit that has discovered the integrated being within itself tries to acquire it.
parable of the hidden treasure Matthew 13:44
parable of the pearl Matthew 13:45
1-2 The spirit proliferates the knowledge of the kingdom of God by itself.
parable of growing grain Mark 4:26-29
parable of the mustard seed Mark 4:30-32 Matthew 13:31-32
parable of the leaven Matthew 13:33
2. The spirit which has the knowledge serves the people who need it.(cf. the activity of the disciples)
parable of the lost sheep Matthew 18:10-14 Luke 15:3-7
parable of the coin Luke 15:8-10
3. Understanding the coming of the integrated being in relation to the life energy.(cf. the end of the world and the coming of the Son of man)
parable of the door keeper Mark 13:32-37
parable of the faithful and unfaithful servants Matthew 24:45-51 Luke 12:42-46
parable of the ten virgins Matthew 25:1-13
parable of the servant who waits for the coming of his master from the marriage feast Luke 12:35-40
parable of the bad servant who knew his master's will but did not make ready or act according to his will Luke 12:41-48 Matthew 24:45-51
4. There are essential situations that interrupt the formation of the integrated being.(cf. the conflict between Jesus and scribes and Pharisees, and Jesus' acceptance of the children)
4-1parable of the wicked tenants Matthew 21:33-46
parable of the marriage feast Matthew 22:1-14
4-2parable of the laborers of the vineyard Matthew 20:1-16
parable of the unrighteous steward Luke 16:1-13
3. Parables in this section teach us how to maintain the integration when the energy of life increases. When the energy of life is activated, the division and unity of the life's impulses increase. At this time, if the attitude and the motivation are well adjusted in accordance with the integration, we can ride on the energy of life, and let the enpowered state of mind emerge. This is the virtual coming of the Son of man. On the other hand, if we are self consciously deviated at such a moment, the energy of life thrusts us away from the integration and makes our minds unstable. The spirit encounters the crisis. We do not really know when and how much the energy is activated.
Such a moment can come not only from within ourselves but also from external causes. It is the time of moral judgment, when our conscience is tested . If we avoid our responsibility at such a moment, we are pushed into the self conscious world. Taking this standpoint, the following parables reveal their hidden configuration clearly.
Mark 13:32-37 "But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch, for you do not know when the time will come. It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the door keeper to be on the watch. Watch therefore -- for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at mid night, or at cockcrow, or in the morning -- lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. And what I say to you I say to all: Watch."
Luke 12:35-40 "Let your loins be girded and your lamps burning, and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the marriage feast, so that they may open to him at once when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes; truly, I say to you, he will gird himself and have them to sit at table, and he will come and serve them. If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and find them so, blessed are those servants! But Know this, that if the householder had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not left his house to be broken into. You also must be ready; for the Son of man is coming at an unexpected hour.
When the energy of life is activated, it is as if a volcano gets active, it is the time of the coming of the master. If we prepare for it, the Son of man comes to us. If we do not prepare for it the thief will come.
4. One of the causes destroying the integration is our blindness to the autonomous function of conscience in our mind. Parables that express debt try to tell us how it functions and destroys our integration without notice. The sin is the cause to pull up one's spirit toward the self conscious area where one's mind lose sight of natural development. It damages one's self actualization. If we commit such an offense to someone, we have a debt to him. ( For example, hurting someone's pride carelessly makes him upset and destroys his integration.)
. Our conscience demands us to clean up the debt relation both borrowing and lending and to make things straight. If this is not cleansed, the sense of justice continue to insist righteousness against injustice. Our imperfect ability never allows us to accomplish it. And the resentment remains. Being in this world, more or less we cannot but have resentment to our fate. Injustice is everywhere in this world. If we take it seriously and complain about it, we cannot keep up the motivation of love.
To be innocent means to forgive such debts of others and ourselves by the atonement. In dealing with debts in this way, paradoxically we can establish the righteousness. (In forgiveness, we can be innocent and as a result, we can establish the righteousness in a different manner.) Clearing off the debts incessantly on the ground of the atonement is the key to solve the question. Unless we have a preparation, a radical change of our posture towards the autonomous function of the conscience, the formation of the integrated being is impossible. If we neglect it, we can never escape from the deviated inclination from the integration. Such a debt relation may often happen in a family situation. For it is not merely transitory.
The parable of the vine yard workers tell us to avoid such a trick of the function of the conscience. It asks us to maintain innocence and straightforwardness.
We can classify the parables of the kingdom of God in terms of the formation of the integrated being. The kingdom of God is, in our terms, the integrated being itself. It is, more concretely, the integration of human consciousness that identifies itself with the integration of light. We have already confirmed that the story of the gospel as such is a parable of the integrated being taking advantage of the spatial and the temporal codes. So the story as a whole is the parable of the kingdom of God.
Then we can infer that the parables told by Jesus in the gospel must be written with the aim of helping our transformation to the integrated being by illuminating the various aspects needed to become the integrated being. Therefore, he describes the parables that form our understandings of the integrated being. Yet the gospel does not expect that everyone can understand this kind of knowledge. The gospel clearly distinguishes the readers who perceive the reference of the parables from others. Mark 4:9 "He who has the ears to hear, let him hear." 4:11 "To you has been given the secret of kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables; so that they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand; lest they should turn again, and be forgiven."
When we think about the parables, therefore, it is necessary for us to understand what kind of aspect the parable holds in relation to the formation of the integrated being. Generally speaking, the parables mentioned in the early stages of Jesus ministry relate to the transition from the first to the second temporal zones; the conversion experience and its following effects. The parables mentioned in the later stages of his ministry relate to the end of the world or the third temporal zone.
Parable of the sower
Everyone wants to be sowed in good soil if there is such a thing. How can it be possible to be sowed in good soil? As soon as we experience the right conversion; the experience that passes through the point of integration, the soil becomes good. It is to discover the existence of the axis between the ego and the Self, and then to grasp the sense of direction that leads to their identification. To understand the words of God means to penetrate gradually the signposts on the road to identification with the integration. Therefore, once the spirit acquires this view point of integration through the conversion, it can increase the great deal of knowledge of transformation, because the viewpoint works as the filter to correct these meanings. This great development corresponds to the words of Jesus, Matthew 11:12 "From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and men of violence take it by force."
Parable of the mustard seed
The acquiring the view point of the integration is, at first, merely a conversion experience, which does not have enough reflective knowledge. According to the parable of the mustard seed, it is the smallest of all the seeds. The smallest also indicates here the most strongly integrated. At the point of the conversion, the spirit has to pass a clear point of the integration and has to touch the character of it. Otherwise, it cannot distinguish the quality of the clear integration and the loose one. To do this the spirit has to pass this narrow integrated point as if passing through the eye of the needle. To enter the kingdom of God for the rich( the inflated ego) is more difficult than to enter for a camel.
Parable of the wheat and the weeds
Until we reach the clear understanding of the concept of the integration, we cannot distinguish clearly the words of God from others. Even if some sayings about God seem to be strange, we cannot decide if the words are authentic or not. The distinction of the true from the false is ambiguous until we reach the third temporal zone, acquiring the norm of the integration. In an attempt to exclude the false, we may exclude the true. If this happens, we lose sight of one of the ciphers to liberate ourselves. So the gospel recommends not to exclude them (false scriptures) hurriedly lest we should lose sight of true propositions.
However, the concept of the integration is the metaphysical concept of life. Once this is established, we have a clear norm; that the proposition encouraging our spirit to identify with the integration is true, and the propositions that do not hold this intention is false. In short, all the propositions that give an impression of easy solution, which do not answer to the radical transformation of the spirit, are excluded as false.
Therefore, when the spirit enters the final temporal zone, the false prophets can no longer hide themselves but necessarily show their ugly figures. It is the time that the spirit clearly sees the false propositions for the redemption. Yet the spirit, at that time, as a beginner of the third temporal zone, does not have enough power to handle the situation. If the false prophet is not merely a written document but a living one, the frustrated prophet may try to deceive the beginner. (Matthew 24:15 "So when you see the desolating sacrilege spoken of the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand) 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains; ....... ) We must escape it lest we should have a false viewpoint. But after acquiring enough power, then we can pull out the wrong propositions from the field with ease.
Parables of the end of the world
In our assumption of life, the movement of life's impulse develops by itself with its repetitive movement of division and unity. When we hear the voice of conscience, it is the moment of change from division to unity. At the time of division, it is inclined to expand its life, where the sense of integration is loosen and the sense of chaos is, to some extent, involved. If the impulse towards division goes to the extreme, a life as a closed system is on the verge of danger to maintain its normal function. So the life, at a certain point, switches its intention from division to unity. It is the moment when the moral impulse activates within us.
Regardless of the external cause or the internal cause, there are occasions for life to have stronger impulses. Parables that relate to the end of the world indicate the coming of such stronger impulses which works either constructively or destructively. At the moment of the coming of this energy, if a spirit is ready to accept it, it can integrate itself stronger taking advantage of this energy. On the contrary, if it is not ready, the spirit is destroyed by the force which makes the spirit go to the extreme of the self-consciousness. The parables of the servants waiting for the coming back of their lords express the context where the spirit is either more integrated or rather destroyed. If the spirit is awake, taking an appropriate posture of faith, it is more integrated and if it is sleeping, the conscience becomes perverted one and the spirit is cast out into the darkness.