There is a stage in human evolution which immediately precedes the goal of human effort, and when this stage is passed through, Man, as Man has nothing more to accomplish. He has become perfect; his human career is over. The great religions bestow on this Perfect Man different names, but, whatever the name, the same idea is beneath it; He is Mithra, Osiris, Krishna, Buddha, Christ-but he ever symbolizes the Man made perfect.
He does not belong to a single religion, a single nation, a single human family; he is not stifled in the wrappings of a single creed; everywhere he is the most noble, the most perfect ideal. Every religion proclaims him; all creeds have in him their justifications; he is the ideal towards which every belief strives, and each religion fulfills effectively its mission according to the clearness with which it illumines, and the precision with which it teaches the road whereby he may be reached.
The name of Christ, used for the Perfect Man throughout Christendom, is the name of a state, more than the name of a man.
"Christ in you, the hope of glory," is the Christian teacher's thought. Men, in the long course of evolution, reach the Christ state, for all accomplish in time the centuried pilgrimage, and he with whom the name is specially connected in Western lands is one of the "Sons of God" who have reached the final goal of humanity. The word has ever carried the connotation of a state; it is "the anointed". Each must reach the state: "Look within thee; thou art Buddha." "Till the Christ be formed in you."
As he who would become a musical artist should listen to the masterpieces of music, as he should steep himself in the melodies of the master-artists, so should we, the children born of humanity, lift up our eyes and our hearts, in ever-renewed contemplation, to the mountains, on which dwell the Perfect Men of our race. What we are, they were; what they are, we shall be. All the sons of men can do what a Son of Man has accomplished, and we see in them the pledge of our own triumph; the development of like divinity in us is but a question of evolution.
By Anne Besant