From the archives of some theosophical e-mail lists.

English

Sufi2

From:  "Lisa Arnold"
Date:  Wed Apr 16, 2003 
Subject:  Re: [Sufis2] Bowl of Saki for April 15

One concept I've always had difficulty with is the spiritual resemblance
to the physical presence, e.g., when I am "visited" by the spirit of
Jesus, why does it resemble his physical form? Is this a "conscious act"
on his part?

From:   Quddus
Date:  Fri Apr 18, 2003
Subject:  RE: [Sufis2] Bowl of Saki for April 15

Dear Lisa, et al,

The following Daily Tao, which arrived approximately the same time as your question, provides a good answer to it and a good response to Katinka's question re the ideal of God. Of course, the image it
expresses is itself, another ideal and is, therefore symbolic, too. But, God is looking out of those eyes in front of you, and it is a great joy when we see It and they recognize It simultaneously.
Compassion

Once you've seen the face of god,

You see that same face on everyone you meet.

The true god has no face. The true Tao has no name. But we cannot identify with that until we are of a very high level of insight. Until then, the gods with faces and the Tao with names are still more worthy
of veneration and study than the illusions of the world.

With long and sincere training, it is possible to see the face of god. Holiness is not about scientific objectivity. It is about a deep and clear recognition of the true nature of life. Your attitude toward your
god will be different than anyone else's god-divinity is a reflection of your own understanding. If your experience differs from others, that does not invalidate your sense of godliness. You will have no doubts
after you have seen.

Knowing god is the source of compassion in our lives. We realize that our separation from others is artificial. We are neither separate from other people nor from Tao. It is only our own egotism that leads us to define ourselves as individuals. In fact, a direct experience of god is a direct experience of the utter universality of life. If we allow it to change our way of thinking, we will understand our essential oneness
with all things.

How does god look? Once you see god, you will see that same face on every person you meet.

from 365 Tao: Daily Meditations by Deng Ming-Dao Copyright 1992 Deng
Ming-Dao Published by HarperSanFrancisco (ISBN 0-06-250223-9)

Love, Quddus

Fire transforms all things it touches into its own nature. The wood does not change the fire into itself; but the fire changes the wood into itself. In the same way, we are transformed into God, so that we may
know him as he is. Acting and becoming are one. God and I are one in this work; he acts, and I become.

Meister Eckhart, 1260-1327

Date:  Thu Apr 17, 2003  3:58 pm
Subject:  Re: [Sufis2] Bowl of Saki for April 15

Dear Lisa
Since nom of us can truely know what Jesus looked likeie it is very unlikely that he was the bearded anglosaxon guy depicted in most artwork, I like to believe that when we see a physical embodiment of Jesus it is a way to allow us to have something our limited Human abilities can relate to so that we can better assimilate the message God is beyond our imagination we cannot concieve of what pure Love could look like so the appearance of a person is Gods way of letting us focus on the message.

From:   D. Ray
Date:  Thu Apr 17, 2003
Subject:  Re: [Sufis2] Bowl of Saki for April 15

Lisa: I, too, have visions/dreams of Jesus. Growing up as a Muslim, worshipping Jesus was forbidden, so any mere mention of the name was consequently and dogmatically forbidden. Gratefully, the Divine doesn't need human approval or rationalization to reveal Itself to whomever S-He chooses in whatever form S-He chooses. My first experience of Jesus Christ was in Pure Love & Light -- it can not be fairly described in an e-mail. Suffice it to say, it has no physical, human or material point of comparison. But to say, we CAN NOT know Pure Love & Light is another limitation. Many folks have indeed
touched this Light. Thereafter, I have had visions of Jesus in the anglo-saxon, humble, soft-hearted, guiding friend image -- because the collective consciousness (encompassing mine) has accepted this as its physical form, whether or not it has any reality base, it is what my mind knows as Jesus, and so it is easily digested when contact is attempted. Spirit can take on any form. Even angels, according to my understanding, are Light -- not at the core winged cherubs, but Light isn't concerned about image -- it can be whatever the mind accepts. I affirm, what truly matters is the message. The messenger is a
casing for digestion. How Blessed to be touched by the Spirit of Love, Lisa!
With Love, D. 
From:   Katinka Hesselink
Date:  Fri Apr 18, 2003 
Subject:  Re: seeing Jesus

Hi Lisa,

This is sort of off-topic, I think. I'll let the moderator decide.

IMO the seeing Jesus as you would picture Him, is simply that the divine takes a shape that you can relate to. Or in other words: your mind projects that shape onto something sacred you've somehow opened yourself to. The message of that something is still relevant, probably, though you can't even count on that, but the form is simply what you need it to be. When you think you see Jesus, you may just
be externalising your own connection to the Divine. The shape you see is simply the shape in your own mind that best fits the content of the message.

Hope that's clear.
Katinka