Most of the time en route to Carthage Jesus talked with his fellow travelers about things social, political and commercial; hardly a word was said about religion. For the first time Gonod and Ganid discovered that Jesus was a good storyteller, and they kept him busy telling tales about his early life in Galilee. They also learned that he was reared in Galilee and not in either Jerusalem or Damascus.
When Ganid inquired what one could do to make friends, having noticed that the majority of persons whom they chanced to meet were attracted to Jesus, his teacher said: “Become interested in your fellows; learn how to love them and watch for the opportunity to do something for them which you are sure they want done,” and then he quoted the olden Jewish proverb– “A man who would have friends must show himself friendly.”
At Carthage Jesus had a long and memorable talk with a Mithraic priest about immortality, about time and eternity. This Persian had been educated at Alexandria, and he really desired to learn from Jesus. Put into the words of today, in substance Jesus said in answer to his many questions:
Time is the stream of flowing temporal events perceived by creature consciousness. Time is a name given to the succession- arrangement whereby events are recognized and segregated. The universe of space is a time- related phenomenon as it is viewed from any interior position outside of the fixed abode of Paradise itself. The motion of time is only revealed in relation to something which does not move in space as a time phenomenon. In the universe of all universes Paradise and its Deities (God the Father, the Eternal Son, and the Infinite Spirit) transcend both time and space (in eternity}. On the inhabited worlds, human personality (indwelt and oriented by the Paradise Father’s spirit) is the only physically related reality which can transcend the material sequence of temporal events.
Animals do not sense time as does man, and even to man, because of his sectional and circumscribed view, time appears as a succession of events; but, as man ascends, as he progresses inward, the enlarging view of this event procession is such that it is discerned more and more in its wholeness. That which formerly appeared as a succession of events then will be viewed as a whole and perfectly related cycle; in this way will circular simultaneity increasingly displace the onetime consciousness of the linear sequence of events.
There are seven different conceptions of space as it is conditioned by time. Space is measured by time, not time by space. The confusion of the scientist grows out of failure to recognize the reality of space. Space is not merely an intellectual concept of the variation in relatedness of universe objects. Space is not empty, and the only thing man knows which can even partially transcend space is mind. Mind can function independently of the concept of the space -relatedness of material objects. Space is relatively and comparatively finite to all beings of creature status. The nearer consciousness approaches the awareness of seven cosmic dimensions, the more does the concept of potential space approach ultimacy (transcending time and space). But the space potential is truly ultimate only on the (eternal) absolute level.
It must be apparent that universal reality has an expanding and always relative meaning on the ascending and perfecting levels of the cosmos. Ultimately, surviving mortals achieve identity in a seven-dimensional universe.
The time-space concept of a mind of material origin is destined to undergo successive enlargements as the conscious and conceiving personality ascends the levels of the universes. When man attains the mind intervening between the material and the spiritual planes of existence, his ideas of time-space will be enormously expanded both as to quality of perception and quantity of experience. The enlarging cosmic conceptions of an advancing spirit personality are due to augmentations of both depth of insight and scope of consciousness. And as personality passes on, upward and inward, to the transcendental levels of Deity-likeness, the time-space concept will increasingly approximate the timeless and spaceless concepts of the Absolutes. Relatively, and in accordance with transcendental attainment, these concepts of the absolute level are to be envisioned by (those of us human beings) the children of ultimate destiny.
8. ON THE WAY TO NAPLES AND ROME
The first stop on the way to Italy was at the island of Malta. Here Jesus had a long talk with a downhearted and discouraged young man named Claudus. This fellow had contemplated taking his life, but when he had finished talking with the scribe of Damascus, he said: “I will face life like a man. I am through playing the coward. I will go back to my people and begin all over again.” Shortly he became an enthusiastic preacher of the Cynics, and still later on he joined hands with Peter in proclaiming Christianity in Rome and Naples, and after the death of Peter he went on to Spain preaching the gospel. But he never knew that the man who inspired him in Malta was the Jesus whom he subsequently proclaimed the world’s deliverer.
At Syracuse they spent a full week. The notable event of their stop here was the rehabilitation of Ezra, the backslidden Jew, who kept the tavern where Jesus and his companions stopped. Ezra was charmed by Jesus’ approach and asked him to help him come back to the faith of Israel. He expressed his hopelessness by saying: “I want to be a true son of Abraham, but I cannot find God.” Said Jesus: “If you truly want to find God, that desire is in itself evidence that you have already found him. Your trouble is not that you cannot find God, for the Father has already found you; your trouble is simply that you do not know God. Have you not read in the Prophet Jeremiah, ‘You shall seek me and find me when you shall search for me with all your heart’? And again, does not this same prophet say: ‘And I will give you a heart to know me, that I am the Lord, and you shall belong to my people, and I will be your God’? And have you not also read in the Scriptures where it says: ‘He looks down upon men, and if any will say: I have sinned and perverted that which was right, and it profited me not, then will God deliver that man’s soul from darkness, and he shall see the light’?” And Ezra found God and to the satisfaction of his soul. Later, this Jew, in association with a well-to-do Greek proselyte, built the first Christian church in Syracuse.
At Messina they stopped for only one day, but that was long enough to change the life of a small boy, a fruit vender, of whom Jesus bought fruit and in turn fed with the bread of life. The lad never forgot the words of Jesus and the kindly look which went with them when, placing his hand on the boy’s shoulder, he said: “Farewell, my lad, be of good courage as you grow up to manhood and after you have fed the body learn how also to feed the soul. And my Father in heaven will be with you and go before you.” The lad became a devotee of the Mithraic religion and later on turned to the Christian faith.
At last they reached Naples and felt they were not far from their destination, Rome. Gonod had much business to transact in Naples, and aside from the time Jesus was required as interpreter, he and Ganid spent their leisure visiting and exploring the city. Ganid was becoming adept at sighting those who appeared to be in need. They found much poverty in this city and distributed many alms. But Ganid never understood the meaning of Jesus’ words when, after he had given a coin to a street beggar, he refused to pause and speak comfortingly to the man. Said Jesus: “Why waste words upon one who cannot perceive the meaning of what you say? The spirit of the Father cannot teach and save one who has no capacity for sonship.” What Jesus meant was that the man was not of normal mind, that he lacked the ability to respond to spirit leading.
There was no outstanding experience in Naples. Jesus and the young man thoroughly canvassed the city and spread good cheer with many smiles upon hundreds of men, women and children.
From here they went by way of Capua to Rome, making a stop of three days at Capua. By the Appian Way they journeyed on beside their pack animals toward Rome, all three being anxious to see this mistress of empire and the greatest city in all the world.