Jesus’ Ascension Into Heaven: An Invitation To Be Your Higher Self

by Joshua Tilghman on April 11, 2013

ascension of ChristThe ascension of Jesus represents the final deathblow to the lower egoic nature. At the consummation of his life-story, Jesus becomes the Christ as his lower nature finally merges with the higher self. The ascension of Jesus is so important because not only does it teach us about the  higher self, it teaches us that the ultimate goal is to be  the higher self, to become our soul. As we become our soul the lower nature is essentially absorbed by our higher nature as consciousness expands. We don’t lose our individuality, but our individuality takes on new meaning as we realize our connectedness with God and the Universe. Even though we still function as individuals, we learn how to function as a collective as well. The perk is that we more consciously experience both worlds! The focus then becomes who we truly are, not who we think we should be. We are a light in the light of God. James 1:17 says that God is a Father of lights, and you are a light. And the key to understanding this concept is to realize that the quality of your light lies in the quality of your consciousness. God is the consciousness of the entire manifested universe, and your lower nature, driven by its selfish passions and desires, is but a tiny, limited, seemingly disconnected part of God’s consciousness. But your higher self is already one with it. As your lower nature merges into the higher self, you also become one with God.

Jesus put it to his disciples like this:

“Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but you see me: because I live ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my father, and ye in me, and I in you (John 14:19-20).

This Bible verse is metaphysical. The world, representative of the lower mind, cannot see the resurrected and ascended Christ. But Christ’s disciples, those who are in the way, shall one day be intimate with the Christ (higher mind) through a divine union of the lower and higher self.

When Jesus states, “At that day” he is referring to the divine union described in the Book of Acts, when the power imbued from on high (cloven tongues of fire) descended on the disciples in the upper room. This is the same thing as the kundalini experience. Jesus refers to this kundalini experience as the spirit of truth. We also know the spirit of truth as the Holy Spirit. If you read John chapter fourteen carefully, Jesus also says that he is the spirit of truth. Why? Because Christ, the higher mind, reveals the spirit of truth. That is why Jesus states he will send the Holy Spirit after his ascension. 

“And I will pray the father, and he shall give you another comforter, that he may abide with you forever. Even the spirit of the truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, nor knoweth him” (John 14:16-17).

As we have already stated, the lower nature cannot know the higher nature, except through experience. This experience involves not just Christ or the father, but both.

“If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him (John 14:23).

The way the scriptures are sometimes taught in church limits the true nature of this experience because God the father, Christ the son, and the Holy Spirit are made to be thought of as separate entities.  But the truth of the matter is that there is one God who manifests himself through three manifestations.  The father is the energy aspect of kundalini and the Christ is the higher mind (consciousness) that comes with it. The Holy Spirit is the truth of man’s nature that is revealed through the Christ that the Father has sent.

A look at the actual ascension

The ascension of Jesus is mentioned in three books: Mark, Luke, and Acts. In the literal accounts there are many contradictions. For example, In Luke’s account Jesus’ ascension takes place in Bethany after a meal of broiled fish and honeycomb in Jerusalem. In Mark’s account the ascension takes place in Jerusalem during the meal. In Luke’s account the ascension is sometimes called a “mini ascension” because it takes place shortly after the crucifixion and resurrection. But in Acts the ascension of Jesus happens after forty days. All this contradiction is easily cleared up when we realize the literal account isn’t important. It is the spiritual message that is being taught through each separate account.

Luke’s account

“And he [Jesus] led them as far out as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and he blessed them. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and was carried up into heaven” (Luke 24:50-51).

If you’re use to discerning the esoteric nature of the scriptures, that phrase I have bolded above should stand out to you. Gaskell’s Dictionary of Scripture and Myth defines Bethany as:

Bethany: “A symbol of the…subjective state of consciousness on the higher mental plane in which the higher self dwells.”

Now notice how the Luke 24:50 says Jesus led them there. Of course he did. This is the esoteric message of Jesus and the Gospels in a nutshell. All disciples in the way will eventually be led to Bethany. But it is important to note that Jesus simply led them there. They weren’t ready to completely receive him yet until they had finished their work on the lower mental plane. Then Christ could return to them!

“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also (John 14: 3).

Mark’s account

In Mark’s account Jerusalem is emphasized as the place of Jesus’ ascension. We really shouldn’t view this any differently than Bethany. The reason the Gospels writers can give two seemingly contradictory accounts without being wrong is because Jerusalem has the same esoteric meaning as Bethany.

Jerusalem:  A symbol of the soul-centre in the causal-body on the higher mental plane.

The account in the Book of Acts

In the Book of Acts the ascension happens at Mt. Olive, which the scriptures states is “…from Jerusalem about a Sabbath’s day journey.” This location also contradicts Luke and Mark’s account literally, but spiritually they are related. Mountains always represent higher states of consciousness, spiritual aspirations, and the highest ideals in scripture.

Now let’s break down the central message of the ascension which is well related in Acts:

“And when he [Jesus] had spoken this things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of there sight. And while they [the disciples] looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up…two men stood by them in white apparel; which also said, ye men of Galilee, why stand ye stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus , which is taken up from you into heaven, shall come in like manner as you have seen him go into heaven” (Acts 1:9-11).

Clouds represent the causal body. A cloud is emphasized as Jesus is taken up because the entire scene represents consciousness moving into the causal body on the higher mental plane. Now notice how the men in white apparel (angels – messengers of light) asked the men of Galilee why they were staring into heaven. Galilee represents advancement and progress in spiritual development. The angels are basically telling the disciples that to gain spiritual progress against the ego we cannot continue to gaze upward—i.e., look outside of ourselves, but we must realize the entire process happens within.

The words which I put in bold last prove this point. It says Jesus “shall come in like manner as you have seen him go into heaven.” The angles are simply emphasizing that the return of Christ is an inside job! There isn’t going to be a literal second coming of a man called Jesus descending from literal clouds. Jesus becomes the Christ over and over again ever time an individual, like you or me, steps into higher consciousness! Symbolically, Christ descends from the higher planes in each individual who accomplishes the passion and crucifixion of Christ within themselves. It would be literally impossible for the whole world to witness Jesus’ return if he came back the same way he ascended. The earth is round! People on the other side of the world wouldn’t have a chance! It was the Gnostics who used to have this argument with the some of the literalists church fathers of the 3rd and 4th centuries.

How the esoteric Jesus series helps you

Many people taught that 2012 was going to be an instant shift where in consciousness where the world would be instantly liberated from the lower mind. Despite this claim, things seem to be a lot worse. 2013 has actually been the start of a pretty painful year to a lot of my family, friends, and colleagues. But it is only this way to bring you to the next step. If you are one of the ones going through this pain, you’ll get through it. All of our problems are manifested through the lower mind. When your perspective about any given situation changes, so will the feelings you associate with those circumstances. What you once thought was the worst moments of your life can be the catalyst for your greatest triumph. The ascension of Jesus directly relates to this process because we are all on the path Jesus took. And although we might not all ascend in this lifetime, we are all still men of Galilee on the path to becoming the Christ. The passion and crucifixion of Christ is being played out in some of our lives right now as we learn to overcome the desires and passions of our lower selves so that consciousness can continue to expand. Whatever you are going through, embrace it and look forward. The dawn of a new day is always around the corner. If things seem to get worse, try and view it as the suffering that leads to obedience, just as Jesus did.

In the next post I’ll discuss more on kundalini and the tree of life in preparation for tackling the Book of Revelations. Until then, many blessings and much love!

selina April 11, 2013 at 5:38 pm

Thank you for reminding me of embracing the tough times as Jesus did.

Joshua Tilghman April 16, 2013 at 7:29 pm

You bet, Selina!

Robert April 12, 2013 at 3:40 pm

Yes. In a recent bout with my own anger at being falsely accused of something that really gets to me, I found it very difficult to let go. I tried breathing and other tricks. But they only worked temporarily. My personal fury kept returning. The scene from Jesus crucifiction flashed through my mind and I remembered the anaolgy from this blog about crucifying the ego-driven nature, and I realized that my resistance to let my higher nature win out was not going to be painless, but would be worthwhile, and that I had the potential to succeed.

Joshua Tilghman April 16, 2013 at 7:53 pm

Robert,

I really appreciate you sharing this. Sometimes its hard to juggle this blog with all the other things I have going on, but these kinds of comments keep me dedicated.

Blessings.

Bernhardt Adjedi Cadbury April 14, 2013 at 10:17 am

If my understanding is right, i hope you are not saying even though Jesus literally ascended he would not return again the second time the same way he literally ascended? “It would be literally impossible for the whole world to witness Jesus’ return if he came back the same way he ascended”.

However, this is the reason why i say this blog is so powerful to those of us, like – minded ones on the path of ascension in navigating the liberation of our souls to totally embodying the Christ within. Thank you for your encouragements in the last session of the blog regarding the pains where in my case nothing seems to be working/progressing, my life seems stagnated and i feel ignored by societal acquaintances. It is really difficult times to endure. Let us therefore take consolation in Gal 2:20 – that states, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me”. and also 1 Corinthians 10:13 – “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it”. Blessings to you all.

Robert April 14, 2013 at 11:21 am

It is heartening to have fellowship with people who are going through difficulties that have some commonality and building each other up in faith and knowledge. I’ve been labelled a heretic, a pagan, and a Satan worshipper by my own family at times. They have since changed their minds. But I have had to become much more diplomatic and less conspicuous when I react to ideas I don’t agree with anymore. I’ve been kicked out (asked not to come back) of a Christian home fellowship led by a close friend I’ve known for years. I found a group of liberal-minded Christians who are experimenting with new ideas, but my job and my family restricts my time so I can hardly meet with them. But there is always a silver lining when the Christ comes out from within us.

Joshua Tilghman April 16, 2013 at 8:57 pm

Robert,

I could never understand why any Christian would kick someone out of the church if the person is sincerely looking for answers. I left church of my own accord after 7 -8 years of faithful service after my pastor didnt engage me enough with my queations. I thought I left on good terms but when I went back for a visit I was met with negativity. So silly.

Robert April 15, 2013 at 1:13 pm

I should mention also that after some time after my difficult experiences with past connections to conservative religion, and I had learned to become less reactive and less personally vulnerable to criticism, I was able to attend another conservative religious group that my wife likes to associate with. I was very careful and very mindful of how I was reacting and how best to deal with my reactions in a constructive way that would not threaten or hurt someone whose security and sanity depended on their conservative belief. The more I did that, the more I was able to communicate things that I believed would help them, and refrain from anything else. I still react inside to things I disagree with, but I don’t let that part of me dominate me or others. This way some useful and polite exchanges take place, instead of confrontations. I think the spirit gives me the ability to do this because of my desire to to do some good and my knowing that if I am not careful I can be destructive to others. It was painful to learn to do this. I had to get rejected and thrown out before I realized I was causing harm in the way I went about things. Something that really helped me grow was this link…. a 75 minute talk on “The Hymn of the Pearl” that is a part of the Gnostic document “The Acts of Thomas”. There is a part of this story where the protagonist is waking up to his true identity and struggling with the hostile environment in which finds himself. He knows he has been in an illusion and does not really belong in this environment. As we becomes more aware of himself, he remembers he has a sacred mission to obtain a precious pearl that is around a dragons neck before he can go to his true homem from which he came. He does this by charming the dragon to sleep using spiritual means. Once he has learned this trick and recovered the pearl, he can go back home.

http://www.gnosis.org/audio/951213.mp3

Joshua Tilghman April 16, 2013 at 7:59 pm

Bernhardt, didn’t mean to confuse you. No, I am not saying he literally ascended or will descend.

About your situation. That is the path many of us have to take. I have went through it big time. It’s painful. But there is light at the end of the tunnel. Just learn to put the important things in life first (family, etc.), love them, love life, appreciate and be thankful for what you can be, and things will begin to turn around.

Blessings my friend. Maybe not at first, but the battle is within the mind. Remember that.

Brandon April 19, 2013 at 8:46 am

I apologize for this long reply, but this was just such an awesome post:

I remember when I was about to turn 16 I knew that a
major shift was coming to my life. Now the actual day
of my birthday nothing really different happened. Its
only 15 years later looking back that I can see how
it marked the beginning of many changes to my life. I
see 2012 the same way, its not some instant fix its
the birth of a new way. Its the beginning of real
spirituality and Christianity not churchianity. Not
being an educational force, theology is losing ground
and the prince of peace gains in an enlightened
world.

I hope it will be a time where those who can see
beyond the literal will be able to find more like
them, because as we all know the path of the mystic
is a lonely one. As I study the writings of old though
I find so many kindred spirits from all times and
places. The knowledge has always been there. Truth
may be hidden but never destroyed, it rises every
generation even stronger.

Tolstoy was excommunicated in 1901. His later years
were spent in amidst many spies of the church even
his own wife was sent to spy on him to take his
writings to burn, which is often the case in the
pious vs. infidels and heretics. From one of Tolstoy’s
letters Oct 23, 1910.

“The kingdom of God is within us and the kingdom has to be won by effort. I believe in this, and exert all possible efforts for this; and here you come to offer me the performance of certain rites and the utterance of certain word, which would show that I consider as infallible truth all that which men who call themselves church consider truth, and in consequence of which all my sins would be pardoned – pardoned somehow and by someone; and that I shall not only be exempt from the inner hard – but at the same time joyous spiritual work of self improvement, but that I shall be somehow saved from something and shall receives some kind of eternal bliss.”

“I freed myself many years ago, adapting a Christian not ecclesiastical point of view, which gives me the possibility of a peaceful, joyous life directed toward self perfection and the readiness for as peaceful and joyous a death in which I see a return to God of love, out of whom I issued forth”

We seek daily that fundamental truth which underlies
all the religions of the ages. Many seeking Christ
can see only the historical man, who laid down his
life to bear witness to the Truth, and not THE TRUTH
to which he came to bear witness.

The carnal mind cannot apprehend Spiritual Truth.
Above the realm of the senses and passions, in the
clear light of eternity, out of the noise and into
the silence must we go “be still and know that I am
God”

Joshua Tilghman April 20, 2013 at 11:22 am

Brandon,

Thanks for this. Unfortunately, Tolstoy lived during tough times when there was little room for higher thinking. But he helped pave a way for many people. His works are brilliant.

Bernhardt Adjedi Cadbury April 20, 2013 at 9:55 am

Brandon, i like the way you just put it “true Christianity, but not churchianity” in other words religion. Jesus did never follow religion. Blessings

Christine Hoeflich April 21, 2013 at 12:07 am

Hi Joshua,

Re: “What you once thought was the worst moments of your life can be the catalyst for your greatest triumph.” These are wise words indeed. More and more I am seeing that the solutions to our problems cannot be found simply by looking outside ourselves. But that’s because we’re being “pushed” to look within (because it’s high time for that…). Really hard times (with chaos and confusion) catalyze us to look within for the solutions, and developing a more real relationship with our higher self is how we will find solutions that are *unprecedented,* that will help not only ourselves but the larger world. (And this is also how our deepest heart’s desires will be fulfilled.) So in a way we can view the hard times as a “gift” from the Divine, so that we can finally realize our potential.

Viewing problems this way (instead of the “normal” way, such as there’s something wrong with me) can reduce the fear and pain people feel A LOT.

Thanks for this post Joshua and thank you all who commented for all the wonderful and warm comments!

Robert April 21, 2013 at 11:48 am

So true. Thanks for the reminder. It reminds me use spiritual resources to look for more creative solutions when I’m stuck. And I am stuck more than occasionally. so there are lots of opportunities for reaching.

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