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Articles > Chopra v. Jesus: 20 Spiritual Lessons Compared


Chopra v Jesus (Telugu)

Chopra v Jesus (Hindi)


Deepak Chopra has written a book entitled, The Way of the Wizard, Twenty Spiritual Lessons for Creating the Life You Want.[1]  This article compares the 20 lessons of Chopra, which represent the New Age and Hinduism, with the teachings of the Bible and of Jesus Christ.  The purpose of this article is to show the teaching common in the New Age and in Hinduism in contrast with the teaching of Christianity, as they are often a study in opposites.

            These compared lessons are both written by myself.  I have tried to fairly summarize Chopra’s lessons.  I have quoted one or two of his italicized lessons at the beginning of each of his chapters or lessons, and then tried to explain them.  This is difficult because he is actually making two or three points in many of the lessons,  and sometimes he repeats a similar point with slightly different emphasis.  I have chosen the dominant or most often discussed central point of each lesson. He uses the medium of the fantasy personas of Merlin and Arthur and his fictional creation of dialogue and teaching from them to explain his viewpoint.  I will compare it with the historical teachings of Jesus and the Bible.

For Creating the Life You Want

For Living the Life God 
Created You to Live

(Deepak Chopra for the New Age) (Wyatt Robertson for Jesus Christ)

LESSON ONE:

“A Wizard exists in all of us.  This wizard sees and knows everything.”

“The wizard possesses the secret of immortality.”

The wizard is a person who has become enlightened and knows that there is God inside of everyone of us.  Behind the appearances of the senses and mortality of man is the hidden and unlimited Self. The universe is inside of living creatures and reality is discovered there.  Chopra uses the wizard as an analogy for the person who discovers this inner self and becomes enlightened. The answers to man’s searching are all within.

LESSON ONE:

There is a God, and He is not you.

     In contrast, the Bible teaches that there is a God, a great “I AM.”  This God is completely self dependent, and self-existing and He is not you.  He does not depend upon man to be discovered.  He is a separate being from man; man is His creation.  Man has the ability to know God, but not to be God.  The answers to man’s searching are outside of Himself in the person of God.

 

LESSON TWO:

“The return of the magical can only happen with the return of innocence.”

The natural state of a man, “innocence” is the ability to live beyond the self with all its categories and labels.  Man is the creator of experience and reality.  We give life to everything in the world.  What you see and how you see matters because it creates reality.

Think with a new perspective, without labels.   Do not let your mind box in your reality.  Your own innocence is the only true existence.  You become innocent through realizing that everything is God and that you are God looking out at yourself.   Your own perceptions and awareness give the universe its life and reality. 

LESSON TWO:

The world exists objectively by the creative fiat of God. 

We are subject to God’s objectively created world with its laws and realities. God created the heavens and the earth.  We are part of His creation, subject to the physical and spiritual laws of the universe.  We perceive things that actually exist objectively of their own, whether we perceive them or not.  Though we may bend our perceptions, reality must and can be discovered by us, and can not be created by us.   Our thoughts and imaginations are actual but do not create reality; they are either true or not.

LESSON THREE:

“The scenery changes, the seer remains the same.”

The enlightened person sees the world coming and going and is ever-conscious, all-perceiving.  This person innately perceives and knows.   Enlightenment cannot be found through the rational mind.  There is little difference between dreaming of a creature and that creature dreaming of you, indeed they are both the same thing.  This is because the entire world is a vast consciousness that is unified and there is little difference between self and the world the self sees.

LESSON THREE:

Creatures are distinct beings, whose natural perception is flawed.  Man perceives with limited knowledge, though God has gifted us with rational minds by which God can communicate truth to man.

     The only all-knowing view is God’s.  Man is a distinct and willful creature who can perceive correctly or incorrectly. We are not the dream of another creature, but the creation of God.  Our perceptions, can either through intuition or through rationality both be equally flawed.  Yet the rational is dependable enough, through which God can communicate objective truth to us in history and through the rational mind.

LESSON FOUR:

“It is your destiny to play an infinity of roles, but these roles are not yourself.”

“A wizard does not believe himself to be a local event dreaming of a larger world.  A wizard is a world dreaming of local events.”

You are more than the role and person you are now playing.  You are timeless and infinite.

The bodies we now inhabit are merely temporary roles for an endless line of roles we continually play.  In order to be truly free and enlightened, you must step out of your roles and enter into simple awareness, even beyond what you are thinking.  Being truly human is to  escape beyond the limitations of your present shell and persona by being silent and nameless, simply aware that you are.

LESSON FOUR:

The person is a singular, finite, individual created by God.

Human life is sacred for having been created by God in His image. Man has been made in God’s image with self-awareness and the ability to know God. You are a finite creature born into time and space. You have only one life to live, after which you will be accountable to God.  What you do with this one life is extremely important, and all men will be judged by God as to whether they have lived to honor and glorify Him and serve His purposes, or whether they have lived in rebellion to Him and His ways.

LESSON FIVE:

“Wizards don’t believe in death.”

Life is a continuum without beginnings or endings.  Death is a bad habit of the mind, an illusion.  The enlightened live above time; they live as eternal energy.  The self or consciousness survives the death of the matter which carries it, to return to this earth again in another form.

LESSON FIVE:

Death is real.

Life in this world has a beginning and an end.  We cannot imagine death away.  Death came into the world because of man’s rebellion against God.  The fear of death is because of its reality.  We are more than a body, we are also spirit.  The spirit survives the body, but does not return to this earth.

LESSON SIX:

“The wizard’s consciousness is field that exists everywhere.”

“The streams of knowledge contained in the field are eternal and flow forever.”

Your own memories and sense of ego are merely separating you from the unity of reality.  You need to set the ego aside and experience the entire ocean of reality and consciousness.

LESSON SIX:

God is eternal and all-knowing, in Whom is all wisdom and knowledge.

Our goal is an objective knowledge of truth and a relationship with God.  We are finite and are not all-present or all-knowing.  God entered the world in the person of Jesus Christ that we might know Him, the only true, omniscient, and immortal God.

LESSON SEVEN:

“When the doors of perception are cleansed, you will begin to see the unseen world.”

Purification is not a moral issue, but an issue of perception.  It is a new way of looking at the world.  We find purification through the subtle, invisible world.   Dreaming is a more real state than being awake as we are free from the physical body.  In profound silence we return to our highest cause and Self, and are at peace.

LESSON SEVEN:

Purification is to be forgiven for our sins.

Purification is a moral and real predicament of humanity.  The things we have done, said, or thought (or should have) have fallen short of the perfection and law of God.  Forgiveness is not to escape into an inner world of neutrality, but to find genuine forgiveness that restores our relationships with men and God.

LESSON EIGHT:

“The seat of power  is in the inner self.”

Love is self-acceptance and setting aside the physical ego to discover the true self within.  Through this enlightenment and oneness with the all, one experiences the power of love.  To be in tune with the huge inner force of your true inner being is to be carried away in the true power of self.  This deep inner awareness of unity and of realization of being a privileged child of the universe is the power of love.

LESSON EIGHT:

Love is from God.

     This is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the sacrifice for our sins.[2]  Love is an issue of awareness, not a denial of individual self for a great cosmic Self.   Love is a sacrificial act, a personal act of laying down one’s life for others, just as God in Jesus has done for us.

LESSON NINE:

“Intentions compressed into words enfold magical power.”

Through enlightened living, a person can organize their intentions as powerful forces by putting them into words that hold magical power.  You can create the life you want and receive your heartfelt wishes.

LESSON NINE:

Learn what is pleasing and acceptable to God.

     Our desires can be destructive and evil.  We must learn God’s ways and discern between good and evil.  God has revealed His will in our consciences and has communicated His ways to man throughout history.  True living is not asserting our desires, but learning what pleases God.

LESSON TEN:

“We all have a shadow self that is a part of our total reality.”

“When the shadow self is embraced, it can be healed. When it is healed, it turns into love.”

     Inside of us, many different concepts of who we are compete to have life.  Learn to embrace the shadow self inside whom you may have imprisoned.  Through breath control we can contact the competing personalities within us and the memories from our past.  We can release old energies and negative judgments and feelings of guilt and heal our true shadow self.

LESSON TEN:

There is a God that we must learn to listen to, and by trusting Him we can be made right.

     Our greatest need is to be right with God.  Our relationship with God has been broken by sin.  Our own conscience testifies to this.  Our relationship with God can be restored again through faith in Jesus Christ.  Our forgiveness was provided for through Jesus’ sacrifice in our place on a cross.  He took the punishment of our sins upon Himself.  By believing and trusting in Him we can find forgiveness and be made right with God. 

LESSON ELEVEN:

“The wizard is the teacher of alchemy.  Alchemy is transformation.”

“You are the world. When you transform yourself, the world you live in will also be transformed.”

By becoming unattached to everything, we can cross a threshold to the power of alchemy to transform the self.  The true world and reality is within you. Through the inner pure Being within we change ourselves.  Since we are the world, when we transform ourselves, we also change the world.

LESSON ELEVEN:

God transforms man through His love and grace;  our hope for transformation is to walk with God.

     The hope for transformation is not within us, but without us in the person of God.  The inner man has been corrupted and we need the saving hand of God.  It is through His undeserved mercies and grace that He first works. As we walk with Him, He teaches us His ways and transforms us within to be more and more like His Son, Jesus.

LESSON TWELVE:

“Order is another face of chaos, chaos is another face of order.”

“Human order is made of rules. The wizard’s order has no rules—it flows with the nature of life.”

Life comes as life gives.  You must learn to accept the unpredictable and live with the chaotic and accept it as a part of life.  Rules constrain and give a false hope of order. Just let life flow as it comes.  Order can never be imposed in life.

LESSON TWELVE:

God has sovereignly ordered life and oversees it for a purpose.

     Life brings with it things that are hard to understand. There are events in our lives that are hard to discern for purpose.  Yet God has revealed His purpose to those who seek Him and look with wisdom.  We can observe truth and principles from which we can make rules to help us live. God Himself has spoken to us rules that explain His goodness and rightness.

LESSON THIRTEEN:

“The reality you experience is a mirror image of your expectations.”

The world of mortals is defined by their expectations.  Their habit of seeing reality through the same expectations each day produces a false sense of consistency.  The known world  is an illusion; the unknown is the world of freedom for the enlightened, for the wizard. 

LESSON THIRTEEN:

The visible world is real, but is not all there is.  There is also an invisible world.

     The visible world is real.  It can be misconstrued as our perceptions may be misconstrued.  There is an objective reality we should not escape from into the world of  our imaginations and possibilities, but we should deal with the facts of our human existence.  There is another spiritual dimension to this world, just as man is more than his body, but also is spirit. 

LESSON FOURTEEN:

“Wizards do not grieve over loss, because the only thing that can be lost is the unreal.”

We are to live beyond loss and death, for the force of life continues to renew and recreate in a constant stream of reincarnation.  When we suffer loss we are too attached, for in truth you cannot lose anything.

LESSON FOURTEEN:

Death and loss is real.

     Death and loss are real and they can be deeply painful;  this pain is real and not foolish illusion. Death and loss are not to be ignored and hold cosmic lessons for mankind.  Jesus Christ came not only to provide forgiveness on the cross, but has broken the power of death to those who trust Him, through His resurrection.

LESSON FIFTEEN:

“The purest love lies where it is least expected—in unattachment.”

Love is not a feeling of attachment, but a detachment from all things.  There is no judging or possessiveness in love. Love is learning to love the universal Being, the Self inside of you.

LESSON FIFTEEN:

 Love is a sacrificial commitment.

     Love is a commitment of sacrificial giving of one’s self.  Love is not a denial of evil and wrong and the existence of enemies, as though love cannot live with truth and right.  Love is true denial of self, not self-realization.  Love includes the love of enemies, even those who have in reality deeply harmed us.

LESSON SIXTEEN:

“A wizard exists simultaneously in all times.”

“A wizard sees infinite versions of every event.”

You can imagine all times and all places and extend yourself beyond the limitations of time and space.  In doing this you can learn to be the center of the universe no matter where you are.  You are the center of eternity and can live in the unity of time and space through the power of projection.

 

LESSON SIXTEEN:

You are a creature of time and space.

     Though you can imagine places and times where you are not present or have not been, there is a difference between your imagining this and it actually being real.  It is a fascinating thing to imagine beyond time and space.  It is even helpful to expand the mind and see from a new perspective.  But we are still created creatures bound in time and space.

LESSON SEVENTEEN:

"Spiritual truth is a series of clues into the mystery of life."

     Spiritual truth is something discovered within your own heart.  The meaning and events of life can all find a meaning when you search for meaning by the clues that come through daily life.

LESSON SEVENTEEN:

Spiritual truth has been revealed to us by God.

     God does work in our life and there is meaning in the details and daily events of our lives.  But we cannot interpret events in any way we please.  The basic truths of life have been revealed to us by God about Who He is and the nature of man and the world. 

LESSON EIGHTEEN:

“Spirit wants to meet you.  To accept its invitation, you must be undefended.”

“When you seek, begin in your heart.  The cave of the heart is the home of truth.”

We trap ourselves in the struggle of duality between right and wrong, good and evil.  The enlightened person does not stay in this painful place, but escapes beyond dualities.  We have created heaven and hell,  good and evil.  Our wills can break us out of this cycle of living with the duality of good and evil.  Spirit is trying to give us clues to the meaning of life, it is the great game of life to discover the mystery of these clues.

LESSON EIGHTEEN:

Evil is real. The heart is deceptive.

     Evil is real.  To try to live above morals and law and evil is a deception.  The solution to evil (such as murder and holocaust) is not denial, but to resist evil and to seek goodness, forgiveness, kindness and grace.  Amorality is extremely dangerous to the human race.  The source of truth must come from outside of us, from God Himself, for the heart is very deceptive.[3]

LESSON NINETEEN:

“Wizards never condemn desires.  It was by following their desires that they became wizards.”

“Cherish every wish in your heart….

Desires are not to be condemned.  We must pursue our desires and through them move to maturity and higher levels of yearning.  As we fulfill our physical and material desires we will be weaned to higher desires.  Each desire is a link in the chain of life leading to the ultimate desires of wanting to know your own divinity.

LESSON NINETEEN:

Desires must be evaluated as good or evil.

     Desires must be discerned as good or evil.  One might desire his neighbor’s possessions or wife.  To act upon those desires would be evil.  To use base desires as a way of learning to desire higher things is a deception.  To fulfill desires will never satisfy those desires, but will create a larger hunger for more.  The wise man discerns between destructive and good desires.

LESSON TWENTY:

“The most good you can do for the world is to become a wizard.”

     Trust in trust itself.  Walk in the way of the wizard.  Live the life of detachment.  You are one with the earth and must join your spirit to her.  You are a person, but you are also a part of the earth itself.  Know this and walk at one with the spirit of the earth.

LESSON TWENTY:

Follow Jesus Christ!

     Trust in God.  Live the life of sacrificial love, as God has done for you in Christ Jesus.  You are a responsible, moral creature, separate from the earth and yet responsible for its care.  Learn what God wants-- every way that is right, pure, good and holy.  Walk in His ways.

By Wyatt Robertson


[1] Chopra, Deepak The Way of the Wizard, Twenty Spiritual Lessons for Creating the Life you Want Harmony Books, New York, 1995.

[2] 1 John 4:10

[3] Cf. Jeremiah 17:9


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