Even if the story of Jesus contains myth, he was a great teacher in my understanding.
He shared his wisdom with love and compassion, hoping to pass along that wisdom to those who would listen. He valued personal freedom more than anything … and that’s what he taught. Seek the truth, he said, and the truth will set you free. To seek the truth with integrity takes courage. Courage he had; he walked his talk and demonstrated how to live with integrity. What integrity meant to him was to think for oneself and express oneself without fear; to love without fear; to separate truth from fiction using one’s own heart and intellect rather than simply repeating what others say it is. He never suggested that anyone should worship him. He was hoping to teach others how to be free through his example … To value freedom, to speak one’s own truth even when everyone else blindly accepts whatever “truth” everyone else accepts. One’s truth constantly changes as one discovers deeper understanding … living with integrity.
Seek with integrity and the “truth” will sometimes change as one discovers deeper understanding. It takes courage to seek the truth, not knowing where it might lead. In Jesus’ time, it wasn’t safe to tell the truth. He did it anyway, despite the fear he might have felt living under the oppressive political and social consciousness omnipresent in his society. Only a few were willing to follow in his footsteps then. Only a relative few are willing to follow in his footsteps now.
Living one’s truth is a risky business. Some who try might get hung out to dry. Many who don’t try will never know what real freedom or happiness is. Maybe one day it will be politically and socially acceptable to be oneself without fear … to really live in freedom. Jesus made a difference. Everyone can. And God helps.
— Mark Goldman