19 07 11 - 06:00You may have needed an antidote from modern "backward" religion:
Perennial Philosophy, also known as âphilosophia perennisâ (Latin: Eternal Philosophy) was utilized by Gottfried Leibniz to designate the common, eternal philosophy that underlies all religions, and in particular the mystical or esoteric components â in this way it is also similar to the Hindu idea of Sanatana Dharma. As such, the philosophia perennis is an intellectual transmission of gnosis, based on the study of the religions, not in isolation from each other, but rather in a conjunction wherein the underlying ideas converge, independent of the concept of communitas (as defined by Victor Turner as the social aspect in religion). Normally, because of the cultural boundaries exerted by the principle of communitas âreligions are cut off from one another by barriers of mutual incomprehensionâ. Schuon elaborates on the nature of this cultural barrier further by stating that âThere is no metaphysical or spiritual difference between a truth manifested by temporal facts and a truth expressed by other symbols, under a mythological form for example; the modes of manifestation correspond to the mental requirements of the different groups of humanity.â Here we see expressed the notion that the symbols found in religion have been equated as truth values â what lies at the root of mutual miscomprehension and mistranslations between cultures is not that some religions are inherently wrong or different to others, but rather that the principle of communitas, the social and communal mode of religious behaviour actually serves to distort and hide the essence of the symbols themselves. The same ties of communal religious behaviour that serve to bind a community together as a distinct cultural group, can also hinder the process of understanding different religious traditions.
This is quite similar to Kantâs interpretations of how religious solidarity is defined; it is not the universal meaning of the symbol (on in this case the Primordial Tradition) but rather how symbols are interpreted and applied to social behaviour within a specific community or culture.
As Kant sees it, genuine religious solidarity does not rest on the confession of a uniform symbol or creed anyway; Kant suspects such creedal formulas of contributing more to a spirit of hypocrisy within people and between them than to anything else. What unites believers in rational religion is not the content of their beliefs but the morality of their dispositions and their propensity to associate their moral vocation with the thought of God. - The Primordial Tradition, by Gwendolyn Toynton
According to Schuon the link that connects the many different cultural strands of religious thought, is gnosis, or the philosophia perennis (which has already been explained as homologous with the Primordial Tradition). Therefore, to fully ascertain how there can be a âfluidâ transmission of gnosis occurring between different communities and social groups, and to fully understand what the Primordial Tradition actually is requires, as an a priori, a lucid and working definition of how gnosis is to be understood in this context.
Even if you hate integralist philosophies, this is worth reading -- you'll find overlap with your own ideas.