What was Paramhansaji’s understanding of Jesus' words "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life" ?
It is very easy to misunderstand the sayings of Jesus when he uses the pronouns "I" or "me."
Paramhansa Yogananda very carefully explains that Jesus spoke on two different levels. One was when he was speaking from a place of superconscious union with God. The verse you mention is an example of this, as are many others such as: "I and my Father are one."
The "I" here refers to a Cosmic "I", a Higher Self, his achievement of final liberation and perfect identification with all that is. This is a state of consciousness not unique to Jesus.
The great Masters and saints of many religions have achieved this level of consciousness. Indeed, it is the eventual destiny of everyone, as Jesus also clearly says elsewhere in the New Testament.
Jesus also spoke on a more human level, as a regular human being, saying things like: "I’m going fishing now."
It’s not that hard to figure out the difference when you know this key. One sounds more cosmic, one sounds more human.
The words "way, truth, and life" mean the inner, spiritual path we take to achieve God-realization.
It really helps to have some guidance when reading the Bible and trying to interpret it. For this reason, I’d like to recommend my favorite book on the subject: Revelations of Christ , Proclaimed by Paramhansa Yogananda