24. How Christianity became a religion independent from Judaism

On Easter Sunday, some disciples went to visit the tomb of Jesus and found it empty. The body had disappeared, leaving only the bandages with which it had been wrapped. Consequently, the disciples proclaimed the resurrection of Christ from the afterworld. They proclaimed that this miracle, unique in the history of humanity, was the sign of a renewed bond between God and men: the “New Covenant”.

On the contrary, the Jewish detractors accused the Christians of having stolen the body to artificially forge the miracle. Against the accusations of the detractors, “Peter said to the people: «Men of Israel, why are you amazed about this man? Why are you staring at us as though we have made him walk by our own power or godly life? he God of our ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed Jesus over to Pilate. You rejected him in Pilate's presence, even though Pilate had decided to let him go free; but you have rejected the Holy One and the Just, and whished a murderer to be granted to you[1]»“.[2]

Both the miracle explanation of followers of Jesus and the malevolent one of the other Jews are evidently erroneous in the view of anyone with a minimum of initiatic knowledge. In fact, far from being a case “unique in the history of humanity”, the reabsorption of one’s constitutive pañcabhūtas into the taṅmātras, with the relative disappearance of the gross body, is relatively frequent in initiatic environments; in particular among the alchemical, thaumaturgical and astrological schools[3]. In saṃskṛt this phenomenon is called brahmalina, which consists in the absorption of the sthūla into the liṅga śarīra. However, the brahmalinas and the ciraṅjīvis must return their pañcabhūtas to the universal gross manifestation (adhibhautika prapañca) in Virāṭ before the conclusion of their cosmic cycles of existence. Therefore, also Jesus will return to earth[4] and, together with all those who had transmuted their gross bodies into subtle ones (Enoch, Elijah etc.), will render his to the five elements.

The interpretation that Christians give to the “resurrection” of Jesus, as well as other wonderful episodes attributed to their founder, consists in the confusion between the initiatic explanation of such phenomena and the transformation of this explanation into exoteric fideistic dogmas, which must be accepted by the believers in uncritical form. The confusion between the esoteric and the exoteric levels is at the base of the various anomalies of Christianity. This absence of discrimination has entailed from the beginning a dramatic conflict between faith and reason, which in recent centuries has been transformed into the rivalry between religious faith and atheistic science. The cause of such situation is that a Jewish initiatic path (the Essene saṃpradāya of Jesus) was transformed into an exoteric religion for non-Jews, the Christianity. Let us now try to explain how this happened.

The Jews of the Diaspora, dispersed in the numerous cities of the vast Roman Empire, they were not well seen due to the exclusiveness of their religion and their hostility against the tradition of their hosting populations. They were often subject to expulsions and repressions[5]. In order to save themselves from the reaction of the local populations, the Jews used two methods of propaganda in their favor: the first consisted of trying to convert the Kings and the ruling classes to their religion; an effort that had little success. The second consisted in an action of semi-conversion of the lower castes, in order to have a larger social base favorable to them. Thus, these semi-converts (Heb.: ger-toshab) became supporters of the Jewish community without, however, being fully integrated in it since the Jews had to remain the elite above all other peoples[6]. The ger-toshab were despised by true Jews, but tolerated by them because respectful of their superiority. It was especially among these semi-converts that the first preaching of the apostles of Jesus spread. Obviously, it was a preaching made by Jewish disciples of the Messiah to other Jews or Judaizers. And when in the texts of the Biblical New Testament we read of conversions of Alexandrians, Athenians, Thessalonians, Romans, etc., it is to be understood that the apostles, addressing the communities of Jews and ger-toshab residing in Alexandria in Egypt, in Athens, Thessalonica and Rome, were convincing them to recognize Jesus as the Messiah.

Two personalities, who were active in the communities of the Diaspora, were very important for the birth of Christianity as an independent religion: St. Paul and St. John the Evangelist.

St. Paul was a Pharisee priest who at the beginning had been strongly in opposition to Jesus' preaching. He was a very learned and highly educated Jew and was part of that priestly category that controlled the Sanhedrin[7] of the Temple. Strongly influenced by the Hellenistic Mysteries, he also enjoyed Roman citizenship, which gave him a very prestigious social status. He never personally met Jesus, but he came to know him during an ecstasy, which led him to embrace the teaching of the Messiah. Preaching the doctrine of Jesus to the ger-toshab of the Diaspora, he realized that these former pagans appeared more open minded than other Jews to accept the Good News (the Gospel). He taught that Jesus, thanks to his holy birth and his pure life, had finally joined God the Father in the heavens after death, where he sits at His right[8]. This was easily accepted by the ger-toshab, who already knew many examples of deification of heroes of the religions they professed before their conversion. Apotheosis (Latin: apotheosis, Greek: ἀποθέωσις) means deification, and often in Greek-Roman mythology heroes, after death, were assumed in the heavens as gods.

In this way St. Paul began to spread the belief that the Jesus the Man was also God. Since the ger-toshab easily accepted this preaching, during the first council of Jerusalem (50 AD) St. Paul declared that in order to be Christians it was not necessary to be circumcised and to obey the Mosaic law. Moreover, he abolished all the dietary restrictions of Judaism. Some of the disciples of Jesus accepted the Pauline reform, others rejected it and returned to Orthodox Judaism. From this splitting of the original community a new religion was born, autonomous from Judaism: Christianity.

The Jewish rituals that Jesus had followed in life were transformed into new Christian rites, with different intentions, forms and interpretations. Over time, Christianity replaced the exterior Mosaic law, very similar to the Islamic sari‘a, with the rules of Roman Law (lat.: jus romanum). The religion was organized socially as an assembly, the Church (lat.: ecclesia; gr. Ἐκκλησία, read ekklesìa = sskr. sammelana). The apostles and their successors were called “directors”, Bishops (gr.: επίσκοποι, read epìscopoi), and the disciples of Jesus were called “elders”, Priests (gr .: πρεσβύτεροι; read presbýteroi); the rest of the believers remained as laypeople. With the passage of time and the Romanization of the Church, the Bishop of Rome became the most important among the others and assumed the title of Pontiff (lat.: pontifex, builder of bridges -between this and the other world) and of Pope, or "father". But all this belongs exclusively to the exoteric side of Christianity.

St. John the Evangelist, author of one of the Gospels, the Apocalypse, of three epistles, and of several texts later declared apocryphal (occult), was not an apostle of Jesus, as claimed by Christian theologians.  St. John the Apostle was in fact a fisherman from Galilee, whereas the Evangelist was a priest of the Jerusalem Temple. It was the Evangelist who hosted the last supper in his house in Jerusalem and, after the death of Jesus, he looked after Mary, mother of the Christ, as if she were his own. Later he took her with him to his exile on the island of Ephesus. John the priest was one of the secret disciples of Jesus; he was, therefore, one of those who transmitted to posterity the initiatic paramparā of the Messiah. This initiatic organization, often inappropriately called the "Church of John"[9], continued the ascetic life style of the Essenes under the monastic form[10].

St. John, who knew deeply both the Jewish esoterism and the Greek Mysteries, gave rise to the doctrine of the Triune God, the Trinity. The human mind can conceive the One God by attributing Him three characteristics: the first is that of the God-Father, which represents the very being (sat) of God. The second characteristic is the God-Word (Gr. λόγος; read lògos), conscious principle (cit) of the manifestation acting in a vibratory form. The third characteristic is the Holy Spirit, which is the principle of fullness and harmony (ānanda) in the totality of the One God[11]. The lògos (vāc) is also the principle of revelation that has been manifested among men by incarnating in the person of Jesus. This doctrine was accepted in dogmatic form also by the exoteric religion preached by St. Paul. On the other hand, the exoterism of the new religion does not explain how this conscious vibratory principle is used as a method (prakriyā) to exert it as a mantra to reach God. In one of the next articles dedicated to the practice of Hesychasm, we will examine the Christian initiatic method secretly transmitted by S. John.

Gian Giuseppe Filippi

 

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[1] St. Peter alludes here to the episode of Bar-Rabbas. See the previous chapter N° 23, Jesus the Christ.

[2] Acts of the Apostles, III.12-14. In the sacred texts of Christianity (Gospels, Acts of the Apostles, Epistles, Apocalypse, or the New Testament of the Bible) the responsibility for the condemnation of Jesus is always unquestionably attributed to the Jews. Contemporary Catholics and Protestants, in order to ingratiate the favor of the unchallenged international power of the present State of Israel, are trying to distort history and to blame this condemnation on the Romans. With this latest politically correct ideology, which considers the Jews “elder brothers”, the Catholics are denying the importance of Romanity for their own Church. See ahead.

[3] It is not by chance that Jesus is under the influence of the planet Mercury, Budha, and therefore corresponds to the knowledge of the above-mentioned cosmological sciences.

[4] I Epistle to the Thessalonians, IV.10.

[5] These anti-Jewish reactions were repeated over the millennia. The Zealots operated guerrilla warfare and terrorism among the host populations. Nowadays, Muslims behave in a similar way in the countries where they are guests. It is a subversive tendency common to all the Semitic religions, which refers to their rākṣasikā origins. See the chaps. 7 and 8 of this Series dedicated to Atlantis.

[6] The ger-toshab were exempted from following the Ten Commandments of Moses and from circumcision. The mutilation of the male genitalia is considered the “sign of the covenant with Jehovah”. These semi-converts actually represented a lower and servile social category, similar to the “followers of the book” (ahl al-kitāb) in Islamic countries.

[7] The ancient Jewish priestly college.

[8] Likewise, even in Yoga darśana and Tantrism, this unification (yoga or samādhi) of a human being with Īśvara is recognized as result of their practices.

[9] This saṃpradāya cannot be called "Church" because it does not have the external assembly structure, being formed exclusively by the teacher (guru) and his disciples (śiṣya).

[10] In the first centuries of Christianity, the term monk (Gr.: μοναχός, read monakòs, solitary: from Gr .: μόνος, read mònos, alone) meant initiated (dīkṣita).

[11] Our Indian readers will easily recognize the analogy between the Trinity and Saccidānanda concepts.