Today I experienced within my consciousness one of those supernova bursts of enlightened understanding that dazzle me with my own brilliance (though not, it must be admitted, with my own humility). For I have discovered an unarguable answer to the controversial question posed by Dan Brown in his “Da Vinci Code”: Was Jesus married? Specifically, to Mary Magdalene.
No. This is an impossibility. For in the time Jesus spent on this earthly plane he came to be considered as the perfect Son of God by those who knew him most intimately. Hence, ergo, thusly, Jesus could not have been married, as “perfection” and “husband” are utterly incompatible concepts. Ask any wife.
I rest my iron-clad theological case.
I know whereof I speak, for I am married. And so I have been for nigh unto thirty-two years, adding together marriage to Wife 1 for eighteen years and marriage to Wife 2 for fourteen years (I like to take this additive approach so, eighteen years from now, I can reap all the congratulatory gifts for my Golden Anniversary). Now, I certainly do not claim to be the Son of God, though hidden somewhere under all the cluttered crap that clouds my consciousness, my soul may indeed shine with a spark of the divine.
I can, though, imagine what would happen if I were indeed the Son of God and climbed some Oregon Mount to reveal myself through a revelatory Sermon. I’d have to be careful to leave my wife behind at some shopping mall. Otherwise, as soon as I got rolling on my Son of God riff an all-too-familiar female voice would pop up from the midst of my heretofore adoring crowd: “Divine being? Perfect Lamb of God? Hah! Let me tell you what Brian is really like.”
Laurel would climb up onto the Mount, and I’d slump down the other side, knowing full well before she spake what she would spake of. Now, no doubt Mary Magdalene would have her own unique and culture-specific evidence that, while Jesus may be perfect before God, he damn well was a major-league doofus around the house. But I have learned, from my own experience and countless talks with other married men, that it is indeed not only possible but inescapable for a husband to serve two masters: (1) the second-in-command, Supreme Being, and (2) the head honcho, Wife.
So I’d be powerless to do anything but listen to Laurel itemize my imperfections, some of which I am capable of listing here, others of which would spring from the countless scraps of to-dos kept in her Husband Reform Drawer, only some of which, thankfully, have been communicated to me so far.
“Brothers and sisters, let me tell you about this so-called divine being. He leaves cupboard doors open. All the time. He considers that dish towels are to wipe his strawberry-soaked hands with, not to dry his hands with. He empties the dishwasher once every ten times and wants me to issue a press release about his selflessness. This is the mark of a humble servant of God? He drives way too fast on country roads at night, and with just one hand on the wheel, no matter how many times (and believe me, it has been many) I say, ‘Slow down! You’re going to hit some baby animal!”
And that would just be Laurel’s introductory remarks. Pretty soon she would have the crowd spellbound, my (rapidly evaporating) flock hanging on her every word, the women urging her on with cries of “Tell it like it is, sister. Lord, your man is just like my man. Divine being? Shit. In his dreams.”
No, I can’t picture Jesus being married. Even if Mary kept her mouth shut in public, Jesus would get an earful at home. No way would he be able to convince even himself that he was the Son of God.
This is the way it should be, the way it must be, to end this post on a more serious philosophical note. For I am convinced by the writings of the great mystics that whatever God is, God isn't anything familiar to us now. God isn't matter or energy. God isn't body or mind. God isn't a being or a thing. I share the eminently Greek perspective that the personal is far removed from the universal. To be the One is not to be the one we are now. Here's how Plotinus, the wonderful 3rd century Greek mystic philosopher, puts it:
"There one can see both him [God] and oneself as it is right to see: the self glorified, full of intelligible light--but rather itself pure light--weightless, floating free, having become--but rather, being--a god." So nobody, meaning "no body," can be God. Who is weightless? Not Jesus, and certainly not me. I prove that every time I get on our bathroom scale.