Do You Want The Red Pill or the Blue Pill?
A Virgin Birth, Born of a Virgin and Virgin Olive Oil
That may be one of the strangest titles I have come up with for any of my articles. Some of you may be wondering what the connection is between “born of a virgin,” “virgin birth” and “virgin olive oil.” Let’s see if this article can justify the title and hopefully explain the connections.
How do we define the word “virgin?”
I am sure that the primary definition in most dictionaries would line up with what most people would say if asked to define virgin. In general, it would have something to do with a person who has not had sexual intercourse. However, that definition doesn’t make any sense when it comes to olive oil, does it? And yet we go to the store and buy not only virgin olive oil but EXTRA virgin olive oil. I must admit that I have never heard anyone described as “extra virgin” so I guess the “extra virgin” only applies to olives and not people. I am not sure how anyone would be “extra virgin.”
According to Wikipedia, virgin olive oil is olive oil that has not had any chemical processes used in its production for the purpose of neutralizing any strong tastes (characterized as defects) and/or altering the acid content, i.e. fatty acids. It was produced only through a physical and non-chemical method. We will come back to olive oil in a moment.
The Virgin Birth: Historical Fact or....?
One of the major components of fundamental Christianity is the "virgin" birth of Jesus. Many Christian organizations have within their doctrinal statement, a section confirming and often requiring the belief in the historical veracity of Jesus’ virgin birth. We debate with, divide from and even excommunicate people based upon our belief regarding the “physical” state of Mary and her virginity or lack thereof.
Many non-Christians are skeptical and some completely reject the concept of the virgin birth altogether. Many will point out that many “pagan” religions and traditions have within their “mythology,” a virgin birth. Within Christianity, the fundamental position of a literal virgin birth is not the only view to be found. There are many within Christianity who have a view that is very similar to non-Christians. These Christians may not see it as relevant or even believe in the literal, historical accuracy of the virgin birth as truth. Instead they see the “virgin birth” in a much different light.
What Does The Virgin Birth Mean To Me TODAY?
To those people, the main issue of the virgin birth isn’t whether it is a historical fact but the issue is “What does it mean to me today?” How does that story, be it historically true or an expression of truth through allegory, symbolism or parable, impact my life? How does it change me?
Assuming the virgin birth is a historical fact, has that “fact” changed people? Perhaps it has indirectly but we have many “Christians” who believe the virgin birth to be historically true and yet their lives change very little. At the same time, we have others who don't believe in the historical accuracy of the event but are so committed to the teachings of Jesus that their lives manifest his character far more than some who believe in the historical event.
What if our focus is distorted? What if we have debated and divided over “born of a virgin” and are so preoccupied with a literal, physical “virgin” birth some 2000 years ago, that we fail to see that it is our own “spiritual virgin birth” today that needs to be our focus? Being “born of a virgin” isn’t the key. The key is experiencing your own “virgin birth!”
Christianity talks about being "born again" or perhaps more literally “born from above.” Within the new age movement etc. people talk about awakening to the divine within them, achieving enlightenment, etc. In essence both groups are talking about a "new birth.” As we can see from our use of “virgin” when it comes to olive oil, virgin can be used in different ways. If we set aside the physical definitions for a moment and instead consider a spiritual definition, we might define a spiritual "virgin birth” as something originating completely outside the norm of human conception, a birth without any physical or chemical processes involved. In other words, it is a purely spiritual process.
Jesus' teaching stated that all of humanity must be born again or literally born from above to enter or experience the kingdom of God. Clearly he was speaking of a birth that has nothing to do with physical parents etc. but is strictly supernatural and divine. Fundamental Christians believe that this experience occurs when one accepts Jesus as their personal Saviour. They are born again and become new creations though truth be told, the new creation seems to remain very hidden a great deal of the time. However, many Christians and New Agers etc. may describe it as becoming divinely conscious of God within us and who we truly are. In the Toltec tradition, it could be described as awakening out of the dream we are all living our lives within. In essence, everyone may be using different terminology but they are describing a similar experience that is available to all regardless of their religion although fundamental Christianity, for example, would insist on the acceptance of Jesus as one’s personal Saviour as a prerequisite.
Today you can hear people talk about a divine mind or divine consciousness. You may hear terms such as infinite wisdom or infinite intelligence. People talk about being able to tap into this divine source and its infinite resources. The Bible talks about it in different terms. We read that we have the mind of Christ and it speaks about spiritual gifts or spirituals such as the word of wisdom and the word of knowledge. It says that we have been blessed with all spiritual blessings and that we have access to all that God possess. Again, we see the same message presented using different words and terms.
Do you want the red pill
or the blue pill?
Birth is emerging from one world into another. It is an awakening to a new dimension or consciousness. The movie, The Matrix, portrayed this very well. In the movie, Neo is trying to discover what the Matrix is. He is also trying to find Morpheus. When Neo meets Morpheus, Morpheus gives him the choice of a red pill or a blue pill. The blue pill will leave everything as it has been for Neo. He will, in essence, go back to sleep. The red pill, however, will answer Neo’s question as to what is the Matrix. It will do it in a very interesting way. It will remove him from the Matrix. Morpheus’s words to Neo as he reaches for the red pill are “Remember, all I’m offering is the truth. Nothing more.”
Remember, all that I’m offering is the truth. Nothing more!
Which pill would you take? Would you choose the blue pill and remain “asleep” or would you choose the red pill? It is sad that so many of us go through life “asleep.” Equally sad is that when given the opportunity to take the blue pill or the red pill, when given the opportunity to be “born from above” or to “awaken to a new consciousness,” many of us would choose to remain “asleep” and stay “unconscious” rather than risk all that is involved in entering into a new world that we may know little about. Comfortableness, even if it includes suffering, is often preferable to the unknown. It would seem that the truth is that one cannot enter the kingdom of God unless one is willing to leave behind the world as one knows it. Old wine cannot be put in new wineskins. Doublemindedness will get us NOWHERE and as a result the kingdom of God, i.e. divine enlightenment, will NOT be NOW - HERE.
Salvation isn’t about changing destinations for eternity. It is about changing ourselves for eternity.
Unfortunately many Christians think the "new birth" is all about being saved from hell and going to heaven. That isn't how the Bible describes the "new birth" or the "new covenant." This view is neither an accurate perception of heaven according to the Bible nor the new covenant or new birth. For those interested in the Bible, a careful reading of Jeremiah 31, Ezekiel 36 and Hebrews 8 will prove that the new covenant or new birth is all about a spiritual transformation taking place within us. Heaven isn't a place we go to but a spiritual state or dimension we can experience within us. Salvation isn't about changing destinations for eternity. It is about changing ourselves for eternity.
Jesus told the people that the kingdom of God was to be found within them and it could be experienced at that time, or in other words, NOW! It was NOW then and it is NOW now and it will be NOW in the future. The kingdom of God is not some ethereal place you go to when you die but a state of being that can and should be experienced NOW.
Experiencing the kingdom of God is true eternal life. It is to truly experience what it means to be fully human and divine. Eternal life operates in the present, in the NOW. God is not the God of the past or the future but He is the God of the Now. He dwells in the Now. One might say God was and God will be but all that really says is that God is I AM. God is not unending time stretching forever into the past or the future. God is beyond time. God exists in timelessness, in the Now.
Could be it that it is “time” for us to quit debating and dividing over the issue of the birth of Christ that took place 2000 years ago and whether or not he was “born of a virgin” and instead focus much more on the “virgin birth” of the "Christ" within each of us today? Wouldn’t that change the world so much more? Within Christianity there is much talk about God dwelling in us or Jesus being in us and us in him. The problem is that despite the fact that 2000 years ago, the Prince of Peace showed up, today the world is torn apart by war and injustice to a degree perhaps never seen before. Despite the fact that Jesus is supposedly indwelling all Christians, Christianity is still often decimated by church splits, dissension, divorce, and moral failures as well as huge doctrinal differences. In some places, getting churches in a community to work together will happen about as often as the proverbial hell freezing over. Of course most of those churches will agree about the virgin birth....
Why is this so? The following quote from Meister Eckhart, Christian mystic (c.1260-c. 1328) might contain the answer.
Jesus might have said, I became man for you. If you do not become God for me, you wrong me!
As heretical as that may sound to some Christians, I believe that Meister Eckhart’s statement becoming a reality would change this world and though I am not suggesting that we become “God” with a capital “G,” all of creation is waiting for the manifestation of the Sons of God so maybe Meister Eckhart’s statement is not as far fetched as we may first think.
Think about what a shift of global proportions this would be. This is the goal, not just for Christians, but for all of humanity. We can debate the historical veracity of the first Christmas and the virgin birth until we die but it won't change us. We can debate the celebration of Christmas versus Tabernacles. It won’t change us. “Facts” rarely do. However, the Christmas or Tabernacles that will change us and change the world is when the “Christ” is born in you and I, when we awaken to the fact that we are amazing spiritual beings, born of God, sons and daughters of God and God dwells or Tabernacles within each and every one of us regardless of our religious associations or lack thereof. When that “fact” becomes your experience and my experience, then we can say that we have been “born again” or “born from above.”
Today Christmas has become materialism personified as people often run up enormous debt buying presents galore. Again our focus has been distorted. I have no problem with gift giving at Christmas but we have lost sight of what the true gifts are. Jesus received gold, frankincense and myrrh. When we experience our personal Christmas we too receive gifts but these are not material gifts that will break or wear out. The gifts we “receive” are very costly but not in terms of dollars and cents. They will cost our “selves.” They will cost us our egos and carnal minds. If however, we will pay the price, we will receive amazing gifts including the awareness that our source/father/mother is God (and dare I say it, the Goddess) and therefore we possess the nature of God and the Goddess. (To paint God with a male or masculine only brush is very inaccurate.) It is a universal law that “like must beget like.” What a revelation it is to discover that love, joy, peace, kindness and compassion etc. already exist in us. It is as if a pipeline from spirit has been clogged and suddenly it opens up allowing spiritual and at times, physical blessings to flow into our hearts and minds. The oil that we are anointed with is the Spirit of God or divine consciousness and it is truly “extra virgin.” It is absolutely divine and supernatural, from a different realm and 100% pure.
The next time you see a bottle of virgin or extra virgin olive oil, may it remind you of yourself. May you remember that you too are, in your purest essence, a spiritual being and there was no physical process involved in your coming into “BEING.” The physical part of you is simply a form within which you function in this physical world but you are not that form. May virgin olive oil remind us to keep our focus on our own “virgin birth” and help us to be less focused on proving people right or wrong when it comes to a historical, physical “born of a virgin” birth.
May we all truly experience the “virgin birth” and thereby enter the kingdom of God, the realm of Spirit. May we experience the divinity that lies within all of us.
Blessings, shalom, namaste
The inspiration for this article came from an article entitled "Have Yourself a Mystic Little Christmas." It can be found at