Theology, the study of religions, their comparative consideration, leads slowly but steadily to the realization that religious experience is a natural event independent of its possible historical expressions. The religious phenomenon itself is a universal, timeless, manifestation of our human nature. It cannot be identified with any particular religious tradition…
IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE RELIGIOUS SCIENTIST
Religion is the science that studies the religious phenomenon. The religious phenomenon is so complex that the religious scientist can only determine it by touching its very essence, its function (its essential function) and not by observing it from the outside (in its peripheral manifestations). The Essence of the religious phenomenon is the Transcendence of common consciousness, the Realization of a Transcendent Consciousness. This means precisely a departure from our very perceptuality and our ordinary functioning (in the terms of knowledge in which we have learned to function). The religious scholar must therefore be capable of such an exit if he wants to observe the religious phenomenon in its essential function. If he simply sees it from the outside, which is of course his right, he will not grasp the essence but only external phenomena.
After all, other sciences also deal with the religious phenomenon, such as Philosophy, Psychology, Sociology, History, or Anthropology, but they only capture peripheral manifestations and external phenomena.
The religious phenomenon, precisely because it constitutes a Transcendence (of common consciousness), is a particularity that needs a special approach and not an ordinary approach as is the case with other sciences that simply approach their object. If for the exercise of a science one needs an inclination (without, of course, this requirement excluding the average person) much more Religion needs a special ability. In the end, he cannot speak about the religious phenomenon unless he can observe its essential function, that is, he can know and understand the Transcendence (of common consciousness), the Realization of a Transcendental Consciousness. We do not think that this reduces the scientificity of the research and the objectivity of the conclusions. We approach the religious phenomenon as far as we can and investigate its essence as much as possible and we convey metaphysical experiences in the language of logic as much as possible. What we are talking about are not personal experiences (which would lead to a sterile subjectivism), but experiences of many believers of the religions we are examining, which establishes the objectivity of our discourse.
Seeing the religious phenomenon from the outside, simply recording what we perceive (with whatever theoretical and methodological resources we have) does not at all mean that we are more scientific. Ultimately, the level of perceptiveness of the scientist (religionist) and the terms of knowledge through which he operates, determine his interpretation and the scientific weight of his conclusions. The more able the religious scientist is to approach the essence of the object he studies, (the religious phenomenon), revealing its objective function, its truth, the better. Unfortunately, in academic circles, throughout the world, there have been very few competent theologians. Most of those who adopt the title of professor of religious studies, within the scientific community, are not religious scholars...
THEOLOGY OR THEORY OF RELIGION
Religion, as a science that studies the religious phenomenon, in its essence, and independently of the distinct religions, concludes in the final analysis that the religious experience of the Transcendence of common consciousness, the Realization of Transcendent Consciousness, is a manifestation of our very human nature.
The study of religions, their comparative consideration, leads slowly but steadily to the realization that religious experience is a natural event independent of its possible historical expressions. The religious phenomenon itself is a universal, timeless, manifestation of our human nature. It cannot be identified with any particular religious tradition.
We are thus slowly led to the creation of a New, Universal, Timeless, Natural, Religion. The final conclusion is that we must define Religion as a Theory of Religion, a Theory of Being, a Theory of the Experiencing of Being, as a General Theory of religion.
In the context of a General Theory of Religion, Being, the Relationship of Being with existence, ontological manifestations, the fields of creation, evolution, integration, etc. are investigated.
HISTORY OF RELIGIONS
Religion, as a general science, investigates the religious phenomenon not only in its general expression (Theory of Religion), but also in particular, as it appears historically. Obliged to study all religions (primitive, ancient and modern) it looks for the general laws according to which the religious phenomenon manifests, through the comparative consideration of religions and determines the specificity of each religion by identifying the factors that shape this specificity .
It becomes clear that Religion is interested in the religious phenomenon itself: it is interested in determining its essence and describing its function. So when he examines a particular religious tradition he examines it under this lens. Historical origin and development, teaching and doctrines, scriptures, practical worship, sociological and anthropological implications, are secondary. Therefore, the religious approach of a religion differs from the simple historical exposition of the phenomenon.
Examining a particular religious tradition reveals that its essence is common to other religions and its function is analogous to that of other religions. Of course, this is not accepted by the believers of various religions who want to consider their faith as the only truth.
The comparative consideration of religions leads to some very remarkable conclusions:
1. In all religions Existence is considered to manifest itself in many ontological time-spaces. This is the conclusion of all religions.
2. The Transcendence of common consciousness leads to the exit from the ontological space-time we live in and the entry into another (transcendent) ontological space-time.
3. The Transcendence of common consciousness is a manifestation of human nature itself.
4. The Transcendence of common consciousness is done by methods similar to the various religions.
5. The religious phenomenon is ultimately a universal, timeless and natural event.