The following of Jesus is not the same as following the teachings of a church. Nor is it the same as sitting and resonating with the scriptures. You do not just follow the teachings of your garage and its mechanics nor get by with the meditational absorption of the owner’s manual. No. You have to drive the car.
What does driving the car mean? To truly drive the car means to be totally absorbed in the driving: fully present, wide awake, relaxed and responsive, aware of all around you. In short, to become one with the car, the circumstances, the environs of this ever changing moment now. No texting. No taking the eyes off the road. You are the road.
When you follow Buddha, you and Buddha are the road. When you follow Yahweh, you and Yahweh are the road. When you follow Allah, you and Allah are the road. And so on. I have no problem with that. But I am a good old Zen Baptist boy and I follow Jesus.
What is the phenomenology, the direct experience, of following Jesus? Every Jesusian has to answer that for themselves. For me, it is to live, like Jesus, as an embodying of the Cosmos, the Mystery—the Spirit, the Life Force, manifesting as flesh. It is, like Jesus, to both know and express life as parable, as paradox, and through these expressions to comprehend. It is, like Jesus, to fully face the world even though you would rather not and not back down. It is, like Jesus, to accept the reality of being crucified on this cross of space (the vertical arm) and time (the horizontal arm). It is, like Jesus, to always rise again, to resurrect to new life, born again this moment now.
George Breed is the author of several books published by Anamchara Books including The Inner Work of the Warrior: A Manual for Embodying Spirit, Jesus and Lao Tzu: Adventures with the Tao Te Ching, and The Hidden Words of the Living Jesus: A Commentary on the Gospel of Thomas.