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Christian Esoterism

Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 03:44:33 AM
The problem of Christianity is this, it was founded as an esoteric order, with Jesus' teachings to the apostles, but does not possess from the outset a formal exoterism or social law like Judaism and Islam.  This meant that as soon as it began to grow, these planes were confused.  Esoterism continued to exist in Christianity (eg. Pseudo-Dionysius and Meister Eckhart), but without ever attaining any significant formal independence and so eventually it ceased to exist, and all intelligence left the religion, at least in the West.  Christianity in the West is now an empty shell, completely devoid of metaphysical content or beauty, and therefore most Westerners do not really understand its depths.  As such intelligent thinkers tend to favor religions where the philosophical content is more explicit, particularly Hinduism and Taoism.  I wasn't exactly sure what to include here but I think the following quote summarises the metaphysical foundations of the Christian perspective nicely.

Quote
"If we start from the incontestable idea that the essence of all religions is the truth of the Absolute with its human consequences, mystical as well as social, the question may be asked how the Christian religion satisfies this definition; for its central content seems to be not God as such, but Christ—that is, not so much the nature of the divine Being as its human manifestation. Thus a Patristic voice aptly proclaimed: “God became man that man might become God”; this is the Christian way of saying that “Brahma is real; the world is appearance”. Christianity, instead of simply juxtaposing the Absolute and the contingent, the Real and the illusory, proposes from the outset a reciprocity between the one and the other: it sees the Absolute a priori in relation to man, and man—correlatively —is defined in conformity with this reciprocity, which is not only metaphysical, but also dynamic, voluntary, eschatological. It is true that Judaism proceeds in an analogous fashion, but to a lesser degree: it does not define God in relation to the human drama, hence starting from contingency, but it does establish a quasi-absolute relationship between God and His people: God is “the God of Israel”; the symbiosis is immutable; however, God remains God, and man remains man; there is no “human God” or “divine man”.

Be that as it may, the reciprocity posited by Christianity is metaphysically transparent, and it is necessarily so, on pain of being an error. Unquestionably, once we are aware of the existence of contingency or relativity, we must know that the Absolute is interested in it in one way or another, and this means first of all that contingency must be prefigured in the Absolute, and then that the Absolute must be reflected in contingency; this is the ontological foundation of the mysteries of Incarnation and Redemption. The rest is a matter of modality: Christianity proposes on the one hand an abrupt opposition between the “flesh” and the “spirit”, and on the other hand—and this is its esoteric side—its option for “inward- ness” as against the outwardness of legal prescriptions and as against the “letter that killeth”. In addition, it operates with that central and profoundly characteristic sacrament which is the Eucharist: God does not limit Himself to promulgating a Law; He descends to earth and makes Himself Bread of life and Drink of immortality.

In relation to Judaism, Christianity comprises an aspect of esoterism through three elements: inwardness, quasi-unconditional charity, the sacraments. The first element consists in more or less disregarding outward practices and accentuating the inward attitude: what matters is to worship God “in spirit and in truth”; the second element corresponds to the Hindu ahimsa, “non-harming”, which can go so far as to renounce our legitimate rights, hence deliberately to step out of the mesh of human interests and social justice; it is to offer the left cheek to him who has struck the right and always to give more than one has to. Islam marks a return to Mosaic “realism”, while integrating Jesus into its perspective as a prophet of Sufic “poverty”; be that as it may, Christianity itself, in order to be able to assume the function of a world religion, had to attenuate its original rigor and present itself as a socially realistic legalism, at least to a certain degree."

            Frithjof Schuon - Outline of the Christic Message

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 04:09:32 AM
I didn't understand a word of that.
Which is a shame, because I wanted to.
Taoism assures simplicity as The Way.
Probably you can see why.
Then again: probably not.
Squawk!

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 04:40:47 AM
Forgetting the quote, the first paragraph seems to say:
The problem with Christianity is that it is unable to explain the simplicity of how things work, no matter how complex the explanation becomes.
The quote itself, impenetrable to me, seems to say: Don't even bother trying to figure out whatever this means, because it will leave you none the wiser.
Which, again, is why taoism is my Way.
The result is the same: reverence for God, although taoism does not call it God.
Reverence, shall we say, for the order of things.
Which is where I am.
It is only people I have trouble with.
Which is why I keep human interaction to a minimum, but for odd forays out to the internet.


Squawk!

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 05:25:03 AM
It is only people I have trouble with.

People, in all of their folly, are part of that order as well, Crow. Ugliness, collapse, death, ignorance, perversion - these don't have any place in your Taoist order?

But then again, you don't listen to death metal, do you!

(friendly jest)

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 05:36:27 AM
You're absolutely right, and I have no disagreement.
People are the way they are, and chaos is the flip side of order.
There is no reason, however, that I feel compelled to like the way that people are.
Especially those who deliberately vandalize the ways of others.
The challenge is to quickly regain balance, after being unbalanced.
It gets easier, but rather slowly.
One does one's best.

Squawk!

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 08:41:07 PM
I promised eleision a substantive discussion here, and I feel bad I have nothing to say except :

Sounds like esoterisic Christianity was just a new way to package stuff in Greek philosophy and eastern religion, but flawed in such a way it became what it became.

Jesus didn't exist and he didn't teach anyone anything. He is an amalgam of different Rabbi's, crazies, stories and concepts. :(

Crow, when you are not defending yourself from others or tooting your own horn, you're quite valid.
Lettin' nillas know.

I hope our aryan overlords will emerge form their l secret base below antartica and wipe all of those under 500 of IQ And don't have the ability to mindtravel into the Xerces Galaxy.

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 08:47:02 PM
Why do you imagine your pronouncement of anybody's validity carries any weight?
Squawk!

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 10:38:26 PM
Why do you imagine your pronouncement of anybody's validity carries any weight?

If it makes you feel any better, this post undermines the basis of the pronouncement. So I back off my statement anyway.
Lettin' nillas know.

I hope our aryan overlords will emerge form their l secret base below antartica and wipe all of those under 500 of IQ And don't have the ability to mindtravel into the Xerces Galaxy.

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 10:54:17 PM
Is that an emotionally-motivated defensive response?
Squawk!

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 11:21:59 PM
Is that an emotionally-motivated defensive response?

Naw, but real talk, you're only asking this to deflect from the fact that much of what you post is seen as such.

Guy, listen, you're ok, really, just fucking quit it with the persecution complex. You don't need to defend yourself so much.
Lettin' nillas know.

I hope our aryan overlords will emerge form their l secret base below antartica and wipe all of those under 500 of IQ And don't have the ability to mindtravel into the Xerces Galaxy.

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 04, 2012, 11:25:49 PM
I defy you to to isolate one instance of defensiveness.
I don't get defensive. Why would I?
I reflect attacks back at the attacker, being a master of ki-aikido, in every sense.
That hardly qualifies as defensive.
I simply don't get pushed.
Squawk!

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 05, 2012, 01:01:55 AM
This lovers' quarrel is amusing but tiresome, Crow is obviously a few sticks short of a bundle so I think its going to be up to you to put an end to it Wolfgang, just apologize and you two will be back to being a happy couple in no time.

I promised eleision a substantive discussion here, and I feel bad I have nothing to say except :

Sounds like esoterisic Christianity was just a new way to package stuff in Greek philosophy and eastern religion, but flawed in such a way it became what it became.


Don't feel bad, this is actually a surprisingly accurate assessment in that it acknowledges what many people around here have often overlooked, in that true Christianity is not radically different from Greek or Eastern philosophy.  I tend to take a more positive view, which is that the flaws which are supposedly inherent in Christianity are due to the fact that Christianity had to take account of the flaws of the people for whom it was intended, and therefore always tended towards emotive arguments.  This allowed a revitalisation of Western culture which was clearly in decline early in the first millenium of Christianity.  This in turn gave birth to the middle-ages, the most underappreciated era of history in my opinion, which produced great works of art and philosophy.  As long as the Greek element persisted in art and in thought everything was kept in balance.  Once this declined Christianity become completely overtaken by the aforementioned sentimentalism and also forgot the value of its traditions.  If medieval Christianity had persisted to this day we would be better off, even if most modern technology had not been developed.  Right now it seems to me that the possibilities created by modern science are more likely to destroy us than save us.

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 05, 2012, 01:16:22 AM
This place should call itself: The Superiority-Complex Forum.
I've never seen so many people, in one place, with such an overwhelming need to belittle everyone else, and act superior.
Except, perhaps for stutteringcommunity.com, where, at least, there is some arguably valid excuse.
It is quite obvious that intelligence doesn't do people many favours.
And here I was, wondering if it was only me that it didn't do any favours for.
It is particularly bewildering to see religious-types, behaving in such similar fashion, to their atheist adversaries.




Squawk!

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 05, 2012, 01:35:24 AM
This place should call itself: The Superiority-Complex Forum.
I've never seen so many people, in one place, with such an overwhelming need to belittle everyone else, and act superior.

Most members of this board have Asperger Syndrome. With such comes obsessive-compulsive nerdiness coupled with a lack of empathy, and a need to keep things perfect internally. Nothing sets off an aspie more than a disordered stamp collection or cognitive dissonance.

And no, I am not being facetious. Simply search "aspie" all over ANUS, and you will see that I am correct.
Impale the Under-120's!

I've always enjoyed a little male bondage every now and then.
I like missionary because it allows me to watch her face as I strangle her.

Re: Christian Esoterism
April 05, 2012, 01:37:52 AM
Thank you. That makes sense. I didn't know about that.
Squawk!