This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

NOTICE:
This Dark Age is now available in paperback on Amazon. The print version is MUCH cleaner than this online version, which is largely unedited and has fallen by the wayside as the project has grown. If you’ve appreciated my writing, please consider leaving a review on the relevant paperback volumes. The print edition also includes new sections (Military History, War Psychology, Dogmatic Theology).

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Christian mingling of levels and the Islamic response

We’ve tried to explain that many of the Christian dogmas, including the sacraments, are formulated in such a way that the two ‘levels’ or degrees of knowledge are intermingled. It is this characteristic that lies at the root of the hostility shown toward Christianity on the part of Islam. In the eyes of Muslims, Christians have mixed esoteric truths (Haqiqah) and the exoteric Law (Shari’ah), which inevitably brings disequilibrium, as has been evidenced by the development of the Christian West, eventually resulting in the modern world we know today. The offense that this ‘mixture’ of esoteric and exoteric is the same which Christ described: ‘Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.’

To offer but two more examples of the confusion in question:

First, in the Christian sacrament of the Eucharist, the bread and wine are consecrated via the same ritual and without distinction between the two species. However, these two species represent, in the traditional world, exoterism and esoterism, respectively. Wine in particular has always played a role in the initiatic order. Christian dogma does not acknowledge this in any way, but treats them as equal.

Second, and more easily described, is the disregard shown for the two degrees of inspiration possible in Holy Scriptures. In Hinduism, for example, we find two categories of inspiration: shruti and smriti. These terms will be elaborated elsewhere, but they pertain to ‘direct Revelation’ and ‘secondary’ or ‘reflected knowledge’, respectively. In Islam there are the corresponding terms: nafas ar-Ruh and ilqa ar-Rahmananiyah. In Christianity again we find no distinction, although any reading of the New Testament shows that both are present and intermingled. Thus, St. Paul will pause to state: “I have no command from the Lord, but I give a judgement,” (1 Corinthians 7) which is the definition of the kind of secondary inspiration noted above. The distinction is quite important because it explains certain apparent contradictions in Scripture and allows readings and meanings to be kept in their proper place in relation to others, everything given the respect it is owed without being either elevated or deprecated unjustly.

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