Fidelity to certain immutable principles is what gives a transcendent unity to the traditional religions of the world, in spite of their material contrasts. They are so many variations on the same theme.
We should not be surprised at their diversity because the possible social applications contained in these principles are virtually endless, which does not mean that all are valid, but only that we should be careful to distinguish between cultural expression, which varies widely because it is a product of the human type that produces it, and the underlying principles that guide this expression. The principles are everywhere the same, and they provide the context and limits in which human expression can flourish. Thus, we never condemn this or that cultural idiosyncrasy: we condemn only the wonton betrayal of a transcendent principle. And what are these principles? The list could be formulated in a number of ways, but to name a few, we could say: transcendence, truth, order, hierarchy, and unity.
We will comment on each of these and hopefully it will become clear why traditional civilizations displayed a fidelity to each, even in the face of human variation, while the modern world has taken great pains to abandon them. We will also add that, in spite of all the contemporary rhetoric about equality, personality, and human dignity, it is the modern world that seems unable to accept the stark differences in human types, and attempts to force all the world into one mold, whether that mold is economic, political, education, etc.