from "The Dogmas of Social Morality Versus The Esoteric Spiritual Teaching That Is At The Origin of Traditional Religions" Section 1; from Part Two of The Aletheon by Avatar Adi Da Samraj
Note: Extra paragraph breaks have been added to Avatar Adi Da's original text, to assist reading on a computer monitor.
In the Western "world" particularly, the institutional (or corporate) "authority" of the exoteric Christian Church has been the principal means whereby the State creates political and social order. Now that the State is associated with scientific materialism and not with "religious" doctrine, the State must find other means for creating order.
Thus, the State is, generally speaking, no longer basing its own (corporate) "authority" on the (corporate) "authority" of the "official" Church.
And, for the most part (even though some still cling, nostalgically, to the "old days", of obedience to corporate exoteric "religious authority"), people are no longer politically and socially controlled (or, otherwise, willing to be controlled) by exoteric "religious authority" — at least, not sufficiently to keep order.
In its origins, what later became institutionalized (or corporate, and "official") "Christianity" was a small cult (or sect) of cultural "outsiders", with its "inner circle" associated with an esoteric Spiritual teaching.
Outwardly, however, in its public preaching, even that essentially esoteric sect was associated with more general "religious" and social principles — and, through the process of that public preaching, people were gradually brought into the inner core of the esoteric life of the sect.
In the early centuries of the Common Era, there were, everywhere, many sects which were (fundamentally) esoteric sects — to one degree or another revolutionary (or of a critical, or "outsider's", disposition) in relation to the "religious" exotericism of the "official religion" of the public institutions and the then-current political conventions of the State.
After about three centuries (by which time much of the esoteric Spiritual basis of the original pre-"Christian" sect had been lost), the Emperor (Constantine) engineered the cultural-historical shift that formally established the dogmatic basis for the institutionalizing of an "official" version of (exclusively exoteric) Christianity, and that eventually (within a few decades) resulted in that exoteric institution of (thus dogmatically defined) Christianity becoming the "official religion" of the Roman State.
Since that time, either "official" (exoteric) Christianity has functioned as an arm of the State, or (otherwise) the State has, in some sense, functioned as an arm of the "official" (exoteric) Christian Church.
As centuries passed, the relationship between Church and State changed — such that the exoteric Christian Church now plays a remarkably different role, and is gradually being excluded, having lost its previous presumed legitimacy and public "authority".
However, the exoteric Christian Church's loss of power in the political and social realms is a relatively recent development. With the original union between "official" Christianity and the State of Rome, Christianity became the force whereby political and social order was developed and maintained in the Western "world".
To maintain order (and not Truth) was its function as an institution.
Obviously, such an institution is not intended to be communicating esoteric teachings to the masses — since esoteric communications are intended to serve the higher, and greater, and (characteristically) Spiritual or (otherwise) Transcendental purposes of Truth-Realization (in the case of, necessarily, more mature people, who have already out-grown the boundaries of merely exoteric, or public, "schooling").
Because esoteric teachings take off where exoteric teachings have come to a developmental end, esoteric communications do not tend to enforce political and social order.
On the contrary, esoteric (and, generally, ecstatic) teachings tend not to bringabout a conventional political and social order — because esoteric teachings presume a prior (or already achieved) state of order, at least within the heart and mind and life of the individual esoteric practitioner.
As a case in point, Jesus of Galilee proclaimed an ecstatic, esoteric Spiritual message. His message was not a program for bringing order to politics and general society — nor was such order the purpose of the earliest institutionalized Christians, who were purposed to "religious" devotion (and even to mystical life), and who were, in any case, in no position to command the State of Rome.
Because their guiding purpose was "not of this world" (and, therefore, of no political use as a tool of social order), Rome regarded the early Christians as enemies — and the early Christians were persecuted by the State, as various other (similarly "unusable") "religious" sects were.
But when the Christians eventually came into power as the "official authority", those features of Christianity that are oriented to the conventions of public (and altogether exoteric) "religion" — the purpose of which is to maintain political and social order — became the dominant communication of "official" Christianity.
When that "officialdom" took hold of Christianity, its otherwise more esoteric dimensions — which were the real ("inner-circle") force at its origin — were systematically eliminated, primarily because esoteric teachings have nothing to do with managing either a great State or any kind of larger common social entity (of ordinary, and, generally, immature, or only exoteric-ready, and not at all esoteric-ready, people).
A "religion" that is to be the "official religion" of a great State (or even any larger common social entity) must be essentially exoteric, and, thus, fundamentally oriented to maintaining social principles, social morality, conventions of behavior that maintain political and social order, and productive participation in work life, and positive participation in the larger collective of community life, and, altogether, universal subordination to the parent-like State (and to the parent-like "official" State-"religion") and, thus, universal conformity to the will of the hierarchical political (and "religious") "authority" (or "authority"-structure) of the time.
Therefore, the "New Testament" (and the tradition of Christianity as a whole) must be seen in relation to both the esoteric sect from which it arose and the exoteric institution that largely replaced it (and even all esotericism) with the systematic exotericism of ordinary political and social purposes that has, traditionally, been served by public corporate "religion" in the Western "world".
The Aletheon by His Divine Presence, Avatar Adi Da
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