Today’s science sees light and matter as convertible, that matter is very slow moving light or “frozen light.” This puts a dagger into dualism that separates spirit from matter because spirit around the world is called Light.
This is true, among other places, in Buddhism and in Christianity. Christianity talks about “Christ as Light”—“I am the Light of the world” and Christ as doxa or radiance or shining light. This is the Cosmic Christ.
In Buddhism, the word for ignorance is avidya and this mean literally “the lack of light.” Vidya or understanding means “made of light.” Because light exists in all things, all things preach of the Buddha.
This is how Thich Nhat Hanh puts it:
The trees, the birds, the violet bamboo, and the yellow chrysanthemums are all preaching the Dharma that Shakyamuni [the historical Buddha] preached 2,500 years ago. We can be in touch with him through any of these. He is a living Buddha, always available.
Today’s science, after wrestling with the question: Is light a particle or a wave? finally came to this awareness: It is both/and. Sometimes light is wave, sometimes light is particle.
It seems to me this understanding is readily applicable to the spiritual realities of the historical Jesus and the Cosmic Christ; and of the historical Buddha and the Living Buddha.
The historical Jesus is a particle of light—as we all are, as all individual beings are, a particle of light made up of particles of light.
The Christ on the other hand is the wave of light coursing through history. What Père Chenu calls “continuous creation” and “continuous incarnation.”
Thus all history and all matter is sacred, the presence of the Christ among us over 13.8 billion years.
The same can be said of the Buddha Nature. The historical Buddha was a particle, a very enlightened particle, an individual who lived his life and moment in history. But after his death his dharma or teaching carries on, and he is called the “Buddha Nature.” Just like the resurrected and Cosmic Christ does the same.
While for some, this sounds like a new Christology, in fact it is the oldest Christology in the New Testament (and is rooted in the Wisdom teachings of Israel).
Adapted from Matthew Fox, One River, Many Wells: Wisdom Springing from Global Faiths, p. 76.
See also: Matthew Fox, The Coming of the Cosmic Christ.
And Matthew Fox and Bishop Marc Andrus, Stations of the Cosmic Christ.
And Fox and Andrus, Stations of the Cosmic Christ Meditation Cards and Guide Booklet
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: “The Mountain of Buddha.” Image by Daniel Arrhakis on Flickr.
Queries for Contemplation
At what age did you first hear about the Cosmic Christ and how did you hear about it? When did you hear about the Buddha Nature? Or how the tselem or image of God is to be found in all beings including the Cosmos itself as a whole?
One River, Many Wells: Wisdom Springing from Global Faiths
Matthew Fox calls on all the world traditions for their wisdom and their inspiration in a work that is far more than a list of theological position papers but a new way to pray—to meditate in a global spiritual context on the wisdom all our traditions share. Fox chooses 18 themes that are foundational to any spirituality and demonstrates how all the world spiritual traditions offer wisdom about each.“Reading One River, Many Wells is like entering the rich silence of a masterfully directed retreat. As you read this text, you reflect, you pray, you embrace Divinity. Truly no words can fully express my respect and awe for this magnificent contribution to contemporary spirituality.” –Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit
The Coming of the Cosmic Christ: The Healing of Mother Earth and the Birth of a Global Renaissance
In what may be considered the most comprehensive outline of the Christian paradigm shift of our Age, Matthew Fox eloquently foreshadows the manner in which the spirit of Christ resurrects in terms of the return to an earth-based mysticism, the expression of creativity, mystical sexuality, the respect due the young, the rebirth of effective forms of worship—all of these mirroring the ongoing blessings of Mother Earth and the recovery of Eros, the feminine aspect of the Divine.
“The eighth wonder of the world…convincing proof that our Western religious tradition does indeed have the depth of imagination to reinvent its faith.” — Brian Swimme, author of The Universe Story and Journey of the Universe.
Stations of the Cosmic Christ
By Matthew Fox and Bishop Marc Andrus.
This is a book of meditations on the Cosmic Christ, accompanying the images of 16 wonderful clay tablets by Javier Ullrrich Lemus and M.C. Richards. Together, these images and meditations go far beyond the traditional Stations of the Cross to inspire a spirit awakening and understanding of the cosmic Christ Consciousness, Buddha consciousness, and consciousness of the image of God in all beings, so needed in our times.
“A divinely inspired book that must be read by every human being devoted to spiritual and global survival. It is cosmically brilliant.” — Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit
Stations of the Cosmic Christ Meditation Cards and Guide Booklet
Beautiful full-color cards from Stations of the Cosmic Christ to aid in your meditations on the Cosmic Christ, featuring the images of 16 wonderful clay tablets by Javier Ullrrich Lemus and M.C. Richards. Step beyond the traditional Stations of the Cross and experience a spirit awakening and understanding of the cosmic Christ Consciousness, Buddha consciousness, and consciousness of the image of God in all beings, so needed in our times. Includes an instruction booklet containing suggestions on how to use the cards.