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the stone, and Christ is not there. Even for three days Christ would not consent to live on earth as a dead Christ buried under the stone. So the Lord took His Christ unto Himself, and has in all ages discomfited and disappointed those that have searched for a dead Christ on earth. Where then is Christ now? He is living in all Christian lives, and in all Christian influences at work around us, Of the dead Christ I speak not. Of what use is a dead Christ to us or to our nation? It is the living spirit of Christ which you should put into your hearts and affections, your daily life and character. Do you not see Christ spreading throughout Christendom, like all pervading leaven, mysteriously and imperceptibly leavening the lives of millions of men and women ? You cannot resist his influence ; you may deny his doctrines, you may even hate and repudiate his name, but he goes straight into your hearts and leavens your
lives. He does not care to enquire what doctrine you believe or what dogma you accept, nor even what sort of a life you lead. You may be the basest of sinners. You may be intellectually opposed to many of his doctrines. Yet the truth that is in Christ will perforce overcome and penetrate your souls, in spite of your perverseness, and secretly influence your character. Truly the kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven.
Now the question is—is all Christendom already leavened ? In some measure, no doubt, Christ's spirit has leavened it. In Christian literature, laws, and institutions we see Christ's living influence as a reality. This living influence, which is advancing in all directions, has touched India, and hence the question she asks — Who is Christ ? The genius of the nation has asked this question, and you are bound to
answer it. As one of India's humble children, I have endeavoured to answer it according to the light which is in me. If
you think my answer is: not acceptable to you, try to answer it in your own way. In the interests of the country, in the interests of truth, the question must be answered in one way or another, now or hereafter. To India's solemn and thrilling cry, you must some day return a response.
Meanwhile, I must beg your acceptance of the truly national solution of the problem I have presented to you. You will find on reflection that the doctrine of divine humanity is essentially a Hindu doctrine, and the picture of Christ's life and character I have drawn is altogether a picture of ideal Hindu life. Surely, the idea of absorption and immersion in the Deity is one of those ideas of Vedantic Hinduism which prevail extensively in India. From the highest sage to the humblest peasant, millions of men in this land believe in the pantheistic doctrine of man's identity with the Godhead. The most illiterate man is heard to say he and the Lord are one ! The doctrine of absorption in the Deity is India's creed, and through this idea, I believe, India will reach Christ. Will he not fulfil the Indian scripture ? I am reminded of the passage in the Gospel in which he says,-"I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil." The Mosaic dispensation only? Perhaps the Hindu dispensation also. In India he will fulfil the Hindu dispensation. The earliest scriptures of our nation are full of pantheism, and though there are errors therein, the truths of pantheism will be fulfilled and perfected in Christ. The religion of our ancestors was pantheism from the beginning to the end. But what is Hindu pantheism ? Esse
entially, it is nothing but the identification of all things with God. I do not mean that you should adopt pantheism as it exists in Hindu books. Far from it. Oh! there are mischievous errors and absurd ideas mixed up with it, which you must eschew. Christ's pantheism is a pantheism of a loftier and more perfect type. It is the conscious union of the human with the Divine Spirit in truth, love and joy. The Hindu sage realizes this union only during meditation, and he seeks unconscious absorption in his God, with all his faults and shortcomings about him. His will is not at one with the will of God. But Christ's communion is active aud righteous; it combines purity of character with devotion. Hindu pantheism in its worst form is proud, being based upon the belief that man is God; it is quietism and trance. Christ's pantheism is the active self-surrender of the will. It is the union of the obedient, humble and loving son with the Father. In the midst of activity, Christ was absorbed in God. Eating or drinking, preaching or going about doing good, his spirit always enjoyed serene communion. There was no pride in him, for he was dead to self. There was no dreamy mysticism in him, for he was ever engaged in doing the will of his Father. In Christ you see true pantheism. And as the basis of early Hinduism is pantheism, you, my countrymen, cannot help accepting Christ in the spirit of your national scriptures. You have already seen how in his outward form and appearance, with his flowing garment, he is acceptable to you. Now, you find that even the spirit of Christ draws you through your national instincts. You have a national affinity to the invisible as well as to the visible Christ. Can you deny it ?
Behold Christ cometh to us as an Asiatic in race, as a Hindu in faith, as a kinsman and a brother, and he demands your heart's affection. Will you not give him your affection ? He comes to fulfil and perfect that religion of communion for which India has been panting, as the hart panteth after the waterbrooks. Yes, after long centuries shall this communion be perfected through Christ, For Christ is a true Yogi, and he will surely help us to realize our national ideal of a Yogi. India must, therefore, honor him. You have learnt to give the homage of your hearts to dear Chaitanya, the prophet of Nuddea, and you have also learnt to give honor unto Guru Nanuk, the prophet of the Punjab. These are your national prophets, and you do well to love and revere them. And if you look upon Asia as your home, you cannot but regard Christ, too, as one of your Eastern prophets, entitled to your loyalty and attachment. He comes to you after all as a Yogi, full of Hindu devotion and communion. How he often went to the mountains to offer solitary prayers to his Father, how the Father listened to and answered his prayers, and how the son rejoiced in loving communion,-all this deeply touches and interests the Hindu mind. The devout Christ, like your Yogis and Rishis, lived a life of sweet-devotion, and loved to dwell always in the Supreme Spirit. He lived too in purity, in the obedience of the will, which unfortunately is undeveloped in this country of ours, and is not always associated with devotion.
gave his Father not only his soul but also his will. In accepting him, therefore, you accept the spirit of a devout Yogi, and a loving Bhakta,—the fulfilment of your national scriptures and prophets.
Let all people in this country who bear the Christian name remember.that it is not by presenting a Western Christ to our countrymen that they will be able to regenerate India. If you like, present the English side of Christ's many-sided character to the English nation. If you wish, present a German Christ to the Germans, and an American Christ to the American people. But if you wish to regenerate us Hindus, present Christ to us in his Hindu character. When you bring Christ to us, bring him to 'us, not as a civilized European, but as an Asiatic ascetic, whose wealth is communion, and whose riches prayers. That horrid form of asceticism, which prevails in this country and which consists only in self-mortification, is indeed most harmful and pernicious. True asceticism, as inculcated by Christ, means simply this —" Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all things shall be added unto you.” Go forth, my Christian friends, from one district to another, from one province to another, dispensing the riches of Christ's asceticism. Go forth as apostolical missionaries, as did those of olden times, full of inspiration and the ascetic spirit of your Master, and you may be sure you shall go forth conquering and to conquer.
One word more, and I have done. The time is coming, and now is, when India shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The time has come when you can no longer be inimical or indifferent to Christ. Say unto Christ, as unto your best friend,– Welcome ! I say emphatically, and I say before you all, that Christ is already present in you. He is in you, even when you are unconscious of his presence. Even if your lips deny Christ, your hearts have secretly accepted him.