Chapter 3: The Marvel of Marvels
Jesus said: I took my stand in the midst of the world and in flesh I appeared to them. I found them all drunk; I found none of them athirst.
Jesus never renounced the world, he was standing in the midst of us all. He was not an escapist; he moved in the marketplace, he lived with the crowd. He talked to prostitutes, laborers, farmers, fishermen. He didn’t go out of the world, he remained here amidst you. He knew the world better than anybody who has escaped from it.
It is no wonder that Christ’s message became so powerful; Mahavira’s message never became so powerful, but Jesus converted almost half of the world. Why? - because he remained in the world, he understood the world, its ways, the people, the mind. He moved with them, he came to know how they function - asleep, drunk - and he started to find ways and means to awaken them.
On the last night, when Jesus was caught - or managed to be caught - when the last drama was enacted, a disciple was with him. And Jesus said, “This is my last night, so I will go into deep prayer. I have to pray, and you are to keep vigil. Don’t fall asleep! I will come and see.and this is my last night, remember!”
Jesus went, and after half an hour he came back again. The disciple was fast asleep. He awakened him and told him, “You are fast asleep, and I told you to keep vigil because this is my last night. Remain alert, because I will not be here again! Then you can sleep for ever and ever. But with me.at least on my last night remain alert!”
The disciple said, “Excuse me, I was feeling so sleepy that I couldn’t help it. But I will try now.”
Jesus went again into prayer. After half an hour he was back and the disciple was fast asleep. He awakened him again and said, “What are you doing? The morning is coming near and I will be caught!”
The disciple said, “Excuse me, forgive me, but the flesh is very strong and the will is very weak; and the body was so heavy, and I thought, ‘What is wrong in taking a little sleep? A little sleep and by the time he comes, I will be awake again.’”
Jesus came a third time and the disciple was fast asleep.
But this is the situation of all disciples. Many times I have come to you and I have found you fast asleep. Whenever I came to you I found you were fast asleep. Sleepiness has become just second nature. What does sleepiness mean? It means that you are not aware that you are; then whatsoever you do is irresponsible. You are mad, and whatsoever you do you do just like a drunkard.