Christianity has covered these beautiful words with so many interpretations that the original freshness is lost – lost through the mouths of the priests who are simply repeating like parrots without knowing what they are saying, without knowing, without hesitating, without trembling before the sacredness of these words. They are simply repeating words like mechanical robots. Their gestures are false, because everything has been trained.
Once I was invited to a Christian theological college. I was surprised when they took me around the college. It is one of the greatest theological colleges in India. Every year they prepare two hundred to three hundred Christian priests and missionaries there – a five-year training. And everything has to be taught: even how to stand in the pulpit, how to speak, where to give more emphasis, how to move your hands. Everything has to be taught. But then everything becomes false, then the person is just making empty gestures.
These words are like fire, but through centuries of repetition, parrot-like repetition, much dust has gathered around the fire. My effort will be to uncover them again. Be very alert because we will be treading on a well-known path in a very unknown way, treading on very well-known territory with a very different, totally new attitude. The territory is going to be old. My effort will be to give you a new consciousness to see it. I would like to lend you my eyes so that you can see the old things in a new light. And when you have new eyes, everything becomes new.
In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God, and
the Word was God.
The Upanishads can feel poor, the Vedas can be jealous:
In the beginning was the Word.
What does it mean when the gospel says in the beginning? Christians have been interpreting it as if “in the beginning” means that there was a beginning. They have been using and interpreting these words “in the beginning” as if they show something about the beginning of time. But without time how can there be a beginning? To begin, time will be needed in the first place. If time was not in existence, then what do you mean by “in the beginning”?
“In the beginning” is part of time and cannot precede time, so “in the beginning” does not mean that there was a day when God created the world. That’s absolutely foolish. “In the beginning” is just a way of speaking. “In the beginning” does not mean in the beginning at all, because there has never been a beginning – and there can be no end. God is eternal, his creativity is eternal. It has always been so and it will always be so.