Friday 16 May 2008

WORLD EXCLUSIVE!!!!!! An Interview With Jesus Christ

Yes, you got it here first.
Just met him in the pub.

Was it the sandals that gave him away, or the beard?

Or was it the halo?

Well, I got him a pint. And we got chatting. And like the good citizen journalist I am, I recorded our chat.

So here you are. The full transcripts of Crushed and Jesus, chatting down the pub.

Crushed: Jesus, so many, many people out there will want to know how it is that you're back. Two thousand years is a long time. Are you really the second person of the trinity, and is this the second coming?

Jesus: Second coming? Not heard of that one. No, I didn't actually die on the cross. That sponge really did have a soporific in it. I went to sleep and woke up a couple of days afterwards. My friends tended to me, I said a few words to them all, and then I was abducted by aliens in front of all of them. They call this the Ascension.

Crushed: Wow. Those Aliens must have been impressed with you. But to be fair, so have we been, ever since you went. How do you feel about your life's work, now you see it's results?

Jesus: Well Crushed, I have mixed feelings. I feel that the marketing worked, but humanity still doesn't understand the product. In some ways, I'm impressed. So much of humanity now lives by values I tried to get across back in those days. But there's a minority of people go round saying I was God and yet by their actions, show they didn't take in a word I actually said.

Crushed: Ok, let's start at the begining. Born of a virgin. Visited in a stable in Bethlehem by Three Kings. Quite a start, eh?

Jesus: Is that what they say? Look, Crushed. It seems you have a sensible society now. There isn't a stigma attached to sex. But do you think Romulus and Remus were fathered by Mars, or do you think their Vestal Virgin mother wasn't really a Vestal Virgin?
My mother was raped by a Roman soldier. I was an outcast all my childhood. I regarded Joseph as my father, but everyone knew he wasn't. My mother invented all sorts of tales to cover up the truth, including angels and promises, but the other boys and girls of Nazareth jeered me with the truth. I learned whilst young to question, not to accept anything as true, until you have thought about it, and weighed it up.

Crushed: So much so, you had the temple priests on the back foot that time?

Jesus (smiling): Yeah, I guess I was starting to think then.

Crushed: OK, what we all want to know about, is those wilderness years. WHAT were you up to in your twenties? What experiences CREATED that amazing mindset, that philosophy that is still so hard to grasp today, and back then, was just totally against the way people had lived? Did the Devil REALLY carry you up to the mountain tops and show you all the kingdoms of the earth?

Jesus: In a manner of speaking, yes. I meant it metaphorically, when I told the others. It was my way of expressing my twenties.
I realised soon, a carpenter's life was not for me. I did a lot of things, saw a lot of things, I lived a very eventful life in my twenties. A life most Judaeans didn't. I did a lot of things I'm not proud of. Hard drinking, womanising, prostitutes, gambling, prison, you name it, I did it.

Crushed: Wow. A very different Jesus from the Jesus people believe in.

Jesus: Back then, these things didn't catch you up. But where do you think I learned my values? I SAW. I saw the Roman system, it was progress, REAL human progress, but at a cost. A cost in terms of conquerors grinding down on the conquered. And the Herods? Corrupt collaborators, selling their homeland to the conquerors like pimps and living off a cut of the Roman taxes.
But it wasn't that simple. The Jewish people- and their moral leaders- thought the path to paradise just meant getting rid of that lot, it wasn't that easy. And Pharisees blamed it all on Sadduccees, and Sadduccees blamed it all on Pharisees, and Zealots screamed in the corner, shouting that only the blood of Armeggedon could solve it.
But everyone missed the point.

It wasn't just the Roman legionaries riding into a village and burning it to the ground. It was the ostracism of the prostitute, the stoning of the adulteress, the piety of the Pharisee as he permits money lenders to make profits out of the poverty of others, in a building devoted to the life force that exists in prostitute and pauper, as much as in Tiberius Caesar and Herod Antipas.

The real problem was in us, and in the ways we had developed of dealing with eachother and judging eachother over the years.

Yes, I did some terrible things. The devil drove me strong in my twenties. But come thirty, I realised, this has to change. Because I found more love and caring in the paupers and the prostitutes, than I found in the Temple priests.

And I thought; This can only change when someone stops taking out, and just puts in. Things are so bad, that the only way to change this is by preaching pure love. If you only love those that love you, where is the reward in that?

And I thought 'Screw you Satan, Yes, I can carry on being a bastard all my life, I can break hearts and be a good conjuring trick con man, may be one day trample over enough people to live in comfort, or I can make a difference.'

That's the reality of my forty days and nights.

Crushed: So- what was the plan?

Jesus: Tell people they mattered. Tell people that every life counts. You can either make the world a better place for having lived, or a worse one. Because we're all part of it, Caesar, Mary Magdalene. And it's about spreading love and being a positive force, not a jackboot kicking and hurting people. And if you can lie there on your deathbed and know you did it good, that people will miss you, that the world is just a little bit of a better place for you having been here, that means way more than all the earthly pleasures of life. I just had to sell that idea.

Crushed: Hence the Kingdom of Heaven?

Jesus: Yes. Heaven and Hell are here and now. But people expected a bargain in those days. So I explained it in terms they could understand.

Crushed: What about this Messiah stuff?

Jesus: Well, to be honest that was never originally part of the plan. But it spread like wildfire. And to be honest, at first it created a problem. Because getting the Romans out, wasn't the answer. Let the Pharisees in? Never been a big fan of Theocracy.
But eventually, it got to levels where I had to make a choice. Use the legend of Jesus that was spreading, or back out and fail. It was a scary choice, don't get me wrong. I spent so much time up in the mountains asking God for advice. All I got was silence. But the silence told me something. God trusted me enough to make my own decision. And that just confirmed me that God is love. God didn't demand anything of me- that's how unconditional his love is. And if he loves us that much, then we should love him that much too.

So I came out as the Messiah. I rode into Jerusalem on the back of the donkey and challenged them.

Crushed: So you knew what the reaction would be?

Jesus: Yes. I knew they'd have to kill me. But I meant to make a stir out of it. I went to Jerusalem to shout my message as loud as I could, to die as loudly as I could, to make people say 'He died that way, to show people how to love.'

Crushed: And did you ever lose heart?

Jesus: Of course I did. I realised, as things accelerated, even my best friends wouldn't loiter around once I was arrested. They believed what I said, but would prefer it if one person got crucified, not twelve. I cried, cried like a baby that night I knew the soldiers were coming. I'm human. I'd had a long journey, a life driven by the sense that I had a job to do and I knew the end was coming, and as I did, I wanted to back out. Go take Mary Magdalene and raise children in a village in Galilee.

Crushed: And what do you think about what your friends said about you after you'd gone? Because surely they made up for their lack of loyalty afterwards? Your friends did a good job in selling the Jesus legend.

Jesus: Yes, they did. But they did so in a way that meant so much of what I said was lost. I didn't die to buy you lot salvation. I bought you nothing. YOU save yourselves, by what you do. It isn't up to me. I just said what I thought. Sitting back and thinking that what I did buys something for you, is missing the point. No, I showed just how far you have to go sometimes, for love. I wanted people to adopt my mindset, to fight for change, not just think 'I'm all right Jack, because I do very well for myself but I follow a set of rules written in a book. How is that any better than the Pharisees?

Crushed: So your point is about love. What about your teachings on sex? They can cause controversy today.

Jesus: My message is about love. It's about people not getting hurt. I preached a message then, to make a society work. Don't walk out on those you love. Be forgiving and don't judge. In those times, a woman cast off by her husband suffered. Marriage was important- without it society was in danger. Love dictated marriage needed strengthening.
But love is what matters. Rules must serve love, not love serve rules. The rules you need today to serve love, are not the same as those you needed two thousand years ago.

Crushed: One more thing Jesus- a lot of people who SAY they follow you, say Communism can't work. And Communists often don't like you. What do you say to that?

Jesus: It saddens me. Communists made sure Communism didn't work. Because they stopped listening to everything I said. Communism can only work, if you have the values I put forward. If everyone TRULY embraces what I said, of course we can live together that way. And if you don't see living together in that way as the logical conclusion of everything I ever said, how can you call yourself a follower of mine?

You live under a system which still says getting control of resources and treating people as just another resource, as valid life objectives, and you wonder why neither my philosophy, nor the mode of living which my philosophy can give you, work?

Crushed: Would you say that people still don't listen, that they either see you as a divine figure who bought them an afterlife, or just a myth?

Jesus: It seems that way. And that saddens me. It makes me feel I failed, that I did it all in vain. Read what I said, analyse it, criticise it. I'm human. Not every thought I had, can stand the test of time. I wasn't infallible. I had no idea people evolved from apes- I really believed that Garden of Eden stuff. Wrong wasn't I?

Crushed: No, mate. I don't think you were. Not to me. I think I see you as the man you were- are. The best and the greatest. A man who died to show he loved a WORLD, a SPECIES. The first humanitarian. The guiding light. You changed the world, mate. Marx, Darwin, Nietzche, even Rousseau and others, they are the great philosophers of our species. But you led the way. You were the greatest philosopher of them all. And that means, you were greater as a man, than any Son of God could ever be.
Humanity DOES owe you, it just doesn't realise what it is it owes.

Jesus: Thanks. If that is my ultimate legacy, it wasn't all in vain.

Crushed: No, it wasn't. We'll never forget you. We love you as much as you loved us- the ones you knew would come later, as well as those you knew.

Jesus (smiling): That's what it's all about. Thanks for listening, Crushed.

Crushed: No, Jesus. Thanks for telling.


Anonymous said...

Brilliant Crushed, although I have to admit at first I was raising an eyebrow, but then you really got to the gist of your point and I was hooked. I don't debate or talk much about religion these days, I "became" a born again christian 28 years ago, basically to make my future wife and her family happy. I no longer go to church or believe the stories of the bible, or that you have to live this way or that way to find your way to heaven. I do believe there is a higher power, or spirit, and that after our souls depart this world there is more. But what you wrote here follows alot of my thoughts perfectly. Well done.

Anonymous said...

Myself I do not follow this whole Jesus religion idea but I do have respect for the beliefs of others. This is a great post.

Anonymous said...

Interesting approach :-)
The thought that came to mind was the comparison with you - "I can carry on being a bastard all my life, I can break hearts and be a good conjuring trick con man, may be one day trample over enough people to live in comfort, or I can make a difference.'"

I guess that's what you ask yourself, too... :-)
One thing... any 'loving and leaving' hurts, even if both have decided it's best...

Anonymous said...

Aw, shucks. I wish I would've known of your interview. I would have loved to have asked Him a few questions.


(1) Is the Magdalene a good kisser?

(2) If You're facing Randy Johnson on a 1-2 count, with a runner in scoring position, do You look for the fastball or the change-up?

(3) Speaking of baseball, would You say that Your biggest mistake was telling W. that he should be president? Or would You say that Your biggest mistake was trading Sammy Sosa?

(4) Did You get to meet Elvis Presley on the spaceship?

(5) Am I reading to much into this, or is Your psychology very similar to our beloved Crushed?

Anonymous said...

I don't know crushed, I am usually a big fan of your religious posts but I didn't really get this or like it very much and I'm surprised I feel as irked by it as I do because I'm usually fairly easy going about people wondering and dissecting Jesus and his message and what they think He 'came for'.
Do you really believe that aliens came and took him?! Never found any evidence of that in any books or historical documents!! :)

Anonymous said...

Hmmm, not been around the blogs for a while, but this is not a bad one to come back to. As someone who's not a member of any religion, I like this re-imagining a lot. Mind you, I'm with -eve-, wondering where you were going with the "new leaf at thirty" theme.

Anonymous said...

Fusion- Well, the first bit, finding an excuse to be talking to Jesus is lame, I admit, but then any excuse to actually be talking to Jesus in the pub is going to be slightly silly.

The real point of the post is a serious one, because we forget Jesus the Thinker in our nidless worship of Jesus the Messiah.

But mankind doesn't need messiahs any more- the last one that showed up did way more harm than good.

But that doesn't mean we don't need Jesus the man.

Nunyaa- Well it's MY beliefs, though not what most conventional Christians would believe.
I actually believe that the Gospels are pretty much true, and all bar Matthew written by those who's names are attached to them. Certain bits are propaganda, such as raising people from the dead and the like, but that just shows the charisma of the man- that after he was gone his followers convinced themselves they saw these things.

Th real Christ is to be seen in 'He who is without sin, cast the first stone'

Eve- Well, let's be frank,- and I'm trying to say this in a way that DOESN'T get deliberately misquoted by my detractors- yes, I do try look at Jesus and use him as an example.

This WOULD be both arrogant and delusional, if the Christ I saw was the Christ of the bible Christian. But it isn't. The Christ I see, is the Christ I write about here. A human being who learnt his message, through life.

In that sense, yes, his example DOES make me want to strive to move away from the whole Sex and Drugs mindset of my twenties.

It deoends on HOW you love, and how you leave.
I think there is a hint- and othrs have taken it further- that maybe there was an element of romantic feeling between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. Religous tradition subtly hints at a platonic closeness there.

Maybe they both abstained from allowing it to be what it might have been, as much as both wanted it, because there was a more important job to do.

x-dell- I just e-mailed him and he says Mary Magdealene was one of his fathers finest creations all round.

She spent her early years looking for a love she never found in a stream of endless men who wanted her for her body and her amazing abilities in bed. But they despised and never bothered to discover the true woman.

Jesus discovered the amazing intellect and warnm heart that lay within. He says without the support of Mary Magdalene, he would have gicen up so many times.

He's not so sure about the baseball- he says it's a shame Andrew is isn't about- he loved sports.

Elvis wasn't there, but Jim Morrison was, which was great. They had loads to talk about.

We do seem to think alike, me and Jesus, don't we? Extraordinary coincidence!!!

No, on a serious note, it is mainly a fictional excerices, none of us can know what Jesus would have said- this is just my slant- a lot of my ethics DO come from my interpretation of what the philosophy of Jesus means in modern terms, as in, if you don't accept as finite, but accept that it is subject to enhancement by knowledge gained since.

After all, science has moved on from Aristotle, it doesn't mean Aristotle wasn't clever.

Kate- I appreciate this post is sensitive in a sense, and I do hope it didn't offend you.
I suspect there are those who will read it and take offence, but that's not the idea at all.

I'm starting to come to the point where when I hear the words 'Is nothing sacred any more?', I actually now think 'Well, if you can't logically justify in a rational argument WHY something should be sacred, than should anything be?'

It's a moot point- because I'll admit I'm comfortable writing this post MYSELF, being Catholic, but might take offence were it written by a declared Atheist. Maybe that's wrong. But in much the same way, we Brits can talk bout how crap this country is, but we take offence when others do it :)

Of course, this is going off into a different topic- censorship and talking account of sensibilities- which is certainly something relevant in today's world.

Hmmm. You got me thinking on a future post.

No, the aliens are just silly. That bit WAS pure flippancy.

Ian- A lot of it IS surmise, maybe even wishful thinking.

But I'll freely admit to having re-read the Gospels over and over- deliberately casting different lights on them each time, trying to find the best slant.

One slant, was to just think of the Divine Christ- the Christ of medieval paintings. You could he was Christ, because he literally shone. No one was ever folled into thinking he was just a man. That's the Christ the medieval Church saw. And you CAN read the Gospels and see that figure. Not the one of film productions, but an awesome Godlike figure with golden hair and a shimmering White robe.

And I think that's how the Gospels were read then.

This is just my reading. And yes, it DOES have some personal relevance. You COULD say, the man is my hero. Or to re-emphasise that, the MAN is my hero.

Anonymous said...

A very interesting way of looking at things!

Anonymous said...

Well this is clever, but like Kate, for me it niggled a little. But then I think I know what you are trying to say even if you are pushing the envelope a little. Not buying it completely but then I don't buy the party line either.

Anonymous said...

This deserves a long, though through comment... I don't have that in me. Not today. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

CherryPie- :) seven words that spoke volumes...

jmb- I think a post like this probably will inspire such reactions in many people- I'm surprised I haven't had the odd blasphemy comment. I'm not saying as such that this version is true, but it does fit the facts, I think.

To me it satisfies the Occam's razor principle.

Sometimes envelopes DO need to be pushed. There is huge amounts of truth in the message he left us- it's why it worked, why it made human life better. It's worth looking at the reality of what his message means.

Heart- :)
I'll let you think further on it.

Anonymous said...

So what was Himself drinking? I have him down as a fine wine sort of chap.

Anonymous said...

yes I think you're an idiot on this one :)