Messianic Complex: Why do people up and think themselves Jesus Christ?

Modern psychology uses the term 'messianic complex' to describe the phenomenon where individuals claim self-awareness of their proclaimed role as a 'savior'. I find this tendency of lower human nature fascinating.

What makes people convinced that they are 'the chosen one'? Even more interesting are the mechanics behind what makes sometimes large numbers of people convinced that a particular person is the messiah?

This happens a lot. Psyche wards worldwide have a continual roster of 'Jesus Christs' admitted for treatment.

Here's the latest 'Jesus Christ incarnate':

why do people think themselves jesus...

...or god, for that matter? probably my mindset is (still) closer to this common madness than yours, but i don't find it difficult to understand why people think themselves jesus, god, or just great, powerful, and extraordinary.

isn't that what all soap operas, tv series, and fantasy novels count upon? that we want to identify ourselves with the rich and powerful, to imagine, at least for a while, that we are not just like every other guy or gal, workinig for a living and hopelessly trying to enjoy what little pleasure comes our way?

reading "the lord of the rings" we sometimes identify with heroic little hobits, performing impossible feats because the destiny of middle-earth lies upon our shoulders, and sometimes as mighty, wise magicians, head almost bursting because of the power we have to wield... or take any other pick of popular heroes.

in most cases the dream ends when we put the book aside or switch off the tb, but sometimes the mind just can't adjust to the plain and ordinary facts of life, keeps the movie running internally, and we go mad. either a little bit, in a subtle way, affecting how we understand and think of ourselves, or gross and in plain sight, when people declare themselves jesus or god. and if they actually do have some charisma and are able to convince others of their dream, then it's probably impossible (almost) to wake up...

i used to have a friend, long time ago, who was suffering from such an illusion and was very subtle and clever about it. of course we were taking drugs at that time, aiding such dream-states, and for some time he made a bunch of us feel as if we were very special indeed and really could do whatever we wanted.

when i left for iindia where i met the devotees he began to dabble in 'magick' (alistair croley, etc.), and the last thing i heard about him was that he'd started taking heroin. i doubt if he's still alive, but whether or not, he's most likely in the association of some dark spirits by now, poor guy. tried to find out about his whereabouts, but never heard of him again. even today, when i hear queen, "we are the champions," his face pops up in my mind...

ys phani.

other sons of God

Other Sons of God

“If Jesus were to come today, people
would not even crucify him. They
would ask him to dinner, and hear
what he had to say, and make fun
of him.”

---Thomas Carlyle

Srila Prabhupada’s other main point of contention with Christian clergy was as follows: Why should God have only one son? Here, Srila Prabhupada questioned the traditional, narrow-minded Christian denial of other saviors, or other ways to God.

Srila Prabhupada’s second point of contention, the existence of other sons of God—other messiahs and other incarnations of God—has been dealt with by one of the 20th century’s leading Protestant theologian. Paul Tillich wrote in a 1978 essay, “Redemption of Other Worlds”:

“...a question arises which has been carefully avoided by many traditional theologians...It is the problem of how to understand the meaning of the symbol ‘Christ’ in light of the immensity of the universe...the infinitely small part of the universe which man and his history constitute, and the possibility of other ‘worlds’ in which divine self-manifestations may appear and be received.

“Such developments become especially important if one considers that biblical and related expectations envisaged the coming of the Messiah within a cosmic frame. The universe will be reborn into a new eon. The function of the bearer of the New Being is not only to save individuals and to transform man’s historical existence but to renew the universe. And the assumption is that mankind and individual men are so dependent on the powers of the universe, that salvation of the one without the other is unthinkable.”

In other words, given the vastness of the universe and the possibility of other worlds, how can the divine incarnation on this small speck of dust be understood on a cosmic scale?

Tillich sees the basic answer to such questions “in the concept of essential man appearing in a personal life under the conditions of existential estrangement (from God)... The man...represents human history...he creates the meaning of human history. It is the eternal relation of God to man which is manifest in the Christ. At the same time, our basic answer leaves the universe open for possible divine manifestations in other areas or periods of being.

“Such possibilities cannot be denied. But they cannot be proved or disproved. Incarnation is unique for the special group in which it happens, but it is not unique in the sense that other singular incarnations for other unique worlds are excluded.

“Man cannot claim that the infinite has entered the finite to overcome its existential estrangement in mankind alone. Man cannot claim to occupy the only possible place for Incarnation. Although statements about other worlds and God’s relation to them cannot be verified experientially, they are important because they help to interpret the meaning of terms like ‘mediator,’ ‘savior,’ ‘Incarnation,’ ‘the Messiah,’ and ‘the new eon.’

“Perhaps one can go a step further. The interdependence of everything with everything else in the totality of being includes a participation of nature in history and demands a participation of the universe in salvation.

“Therefore, if there are non-human ‘worlds’ in which existential estrangement is not only real—as it is in the whole universe—but in which there is also a type of awareness of this estrangement, such worlds cannot be without the operation of saving power within them. Otherwise self-destruction would be the inescapable consequence.

“The manifestation of saving power in one place implies that saving power is operating in all places. The expectation of the Messiah as the bearer of the New Being presupposes that ‘God loves the universe,’ even though in the appearance of the Christ He actualizes this love for historical man alone.”

Within the framework of Christian theology, then, Tillich sees the possibility of other incarnations of God on other worlds, as well as the salvation of nonhumans. This theology is almost Hindu in thought, recognizing that God has indeed incarnated many times, and on many different worlds, in many different universes. According to Hindu thought, there are billions of worlds and universes, endlessly being created and destroyed in time cycles lasting billions of years.

Today, our world is one. Nations are globally connected, as never before in human history. This was not the case two thousand years ago, where Palestine, China and South America were—for all intents and purposes—separate worlds. Tillich’s theology also opens up the possibility of nonhuman—even animal—spirituality.

The Reverend Alvin Hart says that John 14:6 is often mistranslated. The original Greek—ego emi ha hodos kai ha alatheia kai ha zoa; oudeis erkatai pros ton patera ei ma di emou—should read “I am the way, the truth, and the life, and none of you are coming to the Father except through me.”

According to Reverend Hart, “...the key word here is erketai. This is an extremely present-tense form of the verb...You see? In Palestine, two thousand years ago, Jesus was the guru. If he wanted to say that he would be the teacher for all time, he would have used a word other than erkatai, but he didn’t.”

Dr. Boyd Daniels of the American Bible Society concurs: “Oh, yes. The word erketai is definitely the present tense form of the verb. Jesus was speaking to his contemporaries.”

According to the Book of Mormon, God Himself specifically refutes the misconception that He can only make Himself known to one particular people at one point in human history, and leave only one set of written scriptures:

“Know ye not that there are more nations than one? Know ye not that I, the Lord your God, have created all men, and that I remember those who are upon the isles of the sea; and that I rule in the heavens above and in the earth beneath; and i bring forth My word unto the children of men, yea, even upon all the nations of the earth? Wherefore, murmur ye, because that ye shall receive more of My word?

“Know ye that the testimony of two nations is a witness unto you that I am God, that I remember one nation like unto another? Wherefore, I speak the same words unto one nation like unto another. And when the two nations shall run together, the testimony of the two nations shall run together also...And because I have spoken one word ye need not suppose that I cannot speak another; for My work is not yet finished; neither shall it be until the end of man...

“Neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written. For I command all men, both in the East and in the West, and in the North and in the South, and in the islands of the sea, that they shall write the words which I speak unto them. For out of the books that will be written I will judge the world...”

Very interesting comments

Very interesting comments here. I'm learning heaps.