The Awakened


From Paul Knitter’s Without Buddha I Could Not Be A Christian: “To understand Jesus’ divinity as the result of his waking up to the presence and action of the Spirit within his spirit is to make him a very special human being, but it is also to keep him a very real human being. He remains one of us, though he “arrived” way ahead of most of us. As I “passed back” to what I had been taught about Jesus, having passed over to Buddhist teachings about Gautama, I came to realize the amazing resonance between Jesus’ divinity-as-Awakening and my teacher Karl Rahner’s “transcendental Christology.” Rahner insisted that when Christians say that Jesus is divine, they are not making him into some kind of a wonderful “freak,” some kind of a divine Superman who descends from Krypton to save us. Rather, when we say that Jesus is divine, Rahner insisted, we are saying that he realized the full potential of human nature; he attained what all of us, whether we realize it or not, are striving for. We are all imbued with this openness to the Infinite, we are all “finite beings capable of the Infinite.” Buddhists might say we are all endowed with and therefore called to realize our Buddha-nature, or in Christian terms, our divine nature. Rahner reminded us that to say that Jesus was truly divine was another way of saying that he was fully human.”



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