Concerning the issue of the casts, i think that we should leave God to determine the classes of people according to His plan, any human-imposed effort to categorize people based on anything but belief is deemed to fail.
Well, this is exactly what I mean. God DID determine the classes of people according to His plan, that plan was/is the Doctrine of the Castes! In our time though even this sacred hierarchy went through a period of decadence and that's why we see most people today - even learned people of India - being unable to comprehend in their hearts the concept of the caste system.
But in general, as always;-), I agree with your observations.
Regarding the message on your website I believe - in general!:-D - what is written there. The "Miracle of 19" I haven't read yet, but in time I will read it. My kneejerk reaction to it (and I know kneejerk reactions are not always accurate!) is that it sounds a little too simple to verify the genuinness of a book by a little mathematics. It sound too much like "The Bible Code" by Drosnin, in which he claims a lot of fraudulent "prophesies" to be encoded in the Bible that he "decodes" via numerology and Kabbalistic practices. He claims that through the manipulation of "mathematical codes" he can "prove" his thesis to be right.
Now, I don't say that's what your "Miracle of 19" is, I just say that's what it sounds like.
Like I said before, I think it would be a shame to discard other knowledge as being "Satanic", like so much Sufi wisdom.(I remember a long time ago when this forum was new, we had a conversation where you said you met a Sufi that made you question your every conviction and belief. Isn't that a GOOD thing, questioning yourself?)
In general, you come across to me as a person who interprets scriptures too literally. Not always, but often. This makes you miss certain possibilities hidden within the scriptures of an esoteric, mystic, symbolic nature.
I tend to look for deeper meanings in the scriptures, AS WELL AS seeing the simple truth, like you say.
Let me finish by quoting a <a href="http://www.frithjof-schuon.com/interview.htm">Q&A with Frithjof Schuon</a>. Let me also point out that I don't find anything I've said elsewhere about spiritual/religious issues or people I've quoted, to be incompatible or contrary to what you've been saying concerning your faith and opinions in spiritual/religious issues.
BTW, I appreciate and understand the fact that you can't read everything. Neither can I. But certain things are more important than others. Most of the time I feel we are saying the same thing and actually agreeing with eachother, and then you dismiss things I say without having read the source of MY conviction, or interpreting an issue or detail literally, when I interpret it symbolically.
Anyhow, I respect your views and enjoy reading your stuff - keep it up
for Truth, Love, Beauty!
I. Spirituality Frithjof Schuon
Question : You have written more than twenty books on religion and spirituality. Your first book has the title The Transcendent Unity of Religions. May I ask you how one should understand this unity?
Frithjof Schuon: Our starting point is the acknowledgment of the fact that there are diverse religions which exclude each other. This could mean that one religion is right and that all the others are false; it could mean also that all are false. In reality, it means that all are right, not in their dogmatic exclusivism, but in their unanimous inner signification, which coincides with pure metaphysics, or in other terms, with the philosophia perennis.
Q. : How can we know that this metaphysical meaning is the truth?
F.S.: The metaphysical perspective is based on intellectual intuition, which by its very nature is infallible because it is a vision by the pure intellect, whereas profane philosophy operates only with reason, hence with logical assumptions and conclusions.
Q. : This being so, what is the basis of religion?
F.S.: The religious, dogmatic or theological perspective is based on revelation; its main purpose is, not to explain the nature of things or the universal principles, but to save man from sin and damnation, and also, to establish a realistic social equilibrium.
Q. : If we have religion, which saves us, why do we also need metaphysics?
F.S.: It is because metaphysics satisfies the needs of intellectually gifted men. Metaphysical truth concerns not only our thinking, but it penetrates also our whole being; therefore it is far above philosophy in the ordinary sense of the word.
Q. : You mentioned before intellectual intuition. Doesn't every man possess this faculty?
F.S.: Yes and no. In principle, every man is capable of intellection, for the simple reason that man is man; but in fact, intellectual intuition -- the "eye of the heart" -- is hidden under a sheet of ice, so to speak, because of the degeneration of the human species. So we may say that pure intellection is a gift and not a generally human faculty.
Q. : Is it possible to develop this higher intuition?
F.S.: There is no need to develop it. Man can be saved by faith alone. But it is evident that a very pious or contemplative person has more intuition than a worldly person.
Q. : What would be your message for the average man?
F.S.: Prayer. To be a human being means to be connected with God. Life has no meaning without this. Prayer and beauty, of course; for we live among forms and not in a cloud. Beauty of soul first, and then beauty of symbols around us.
Q. : You have spoken of metaphysics. May I ask you what the main content of this perennial wisdom is?
F.S.: Metaphysics means essentially: discernment between the Real and the apparent, or the illusory; in Vedantic terms: Atma and Maya ; the Divine and the cosmic. Metaphysics is concerned also with the roots of Maya in Atma,-- this is the Divine Personification, the creating and revealing God -- and then with the projection of Atma into Maya -- this means everything that is positive or good in the world. And this is essential: metaphysical knowledge requires intellectual, psychic and moral assimilation; discernment requires concentration, contemplation and union. Therefore metaphysical theory is not a philosophy in the modern sense of the word; it is essentially sacred. The sense of the sacred is an indispensable qualification for metaphysical realization, as it is for every spiritual way. For the Red Indian, as also for the Hindu, everything in nature is sacred; this, modern man has to learn, because it is a question of ecology in the broadest' sense of the word. What is needed first, is prayer; and then: back to Nature! One could object that it is too late; now, each person is responsible for what he or she does -- not for what others do -- because each one stands before God and can do what is requested for his immortal soul. The first step back to Nature is dignity; dignity of forms and of behavior; this creates the climate in which prayers feel at home, because dignity partakes of the immutable Truth.