This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

Conversion and apostasy

It may appear from my way of speaking that, since there are a number of traditional forms, that “conversion” from one legitimate, living form to another is permissible, and that’s obviously true. But be careful not to conclude, on this basis, that there is no such thing as apostasy, which is the illegitimate abandonment of one’s faith. An ‘apostate’ is basically someone who moves from one religion to another without valid reason. From an exoteric point of view and from within a particular tradition, this is how most “conversions” to a foreign religion are viewed, and this makes sense based on the exclusivist viewpoint maintained by believers. There is also a third case, which takes place only on the esoteric level: that of a person who adopts a religious form that is not his own for the sake of spiritual expediency and without any “conversion” taking place, since on the esoteric level one need not be “reborn” in order to appreciate other revelations.

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