To back up a bit, why does it even matter? You know, this business of esoteric vs. exoteric -- it sounds like you're having a relapse of new age gnosticism; or probably just fleeing from the unavoidable scandal of Christianity.
The Last Temptation of Bob?
I can think of two main reasons why it matters, the first being metaphysical, the second evangelical, or understanding and communication, respectively.
As it pertains to the blog, we never communicate what we haven't understood; we do not engage in speculation. For starters, if we give someone a bum steer, i.e., bad vertical directions, then...
Put it this way: just as we are responsible, forever, for any exuperant animal we tame, we are equally responsible for what we presume to teach. Let's say I confidently give a motorist directions, not knowing or caring that he will drive over an abyss or crash into a wall. The consequences are on me.
Nor, in giving directions, should we go wobbly at critical junctures, unless the wobbliness is truly in the nature of things, which it sometimes is. The intellect has its rights and privileges, and in general these are both more and less extensive than the average person realizes. Human beings are much more intelligent than folks realize, but also much more stupid -- especially the intelligent ones. The stupid ones generally aren't so grandiose.
Consider the village atheist, whose spiritual pathology is precisely a consequence of a ridiculous pride mingled with bottomless subjectivity. For truly, who cares about the inane babbling of an opinionated primate? Either these primates can know truth or they can't; and if they can, then they have thereby transcended themselves and left biology and physics and atheism below. Besides, we're Homo sapiens, not Homo opiniones.
Biology and physics, or math and genetics, still exist -- obviously -- but the intellect explains them rather than vice versa. The lower realms are necessary but never sufficient conditions for the emergence of humanness. If they were both necessary and sufficient, we couldn't know it, any more than my dog can know she is a domesticated descendent of an extinct ancient wolf.
Back to the question at hand: why is esoterism important? Come to think of it, let's first define our terms: what exactly is esoterism?
Well, there's no such thing unless it is understood in the context of its complementary partner, exoterism. This is one of those primordial complementarities that suffuse our existence, e.g., subject/object, time/eternity, form/substance, self/other, appearance/reality, absolute/relative, etc. In each case, the one evokes the other, and cannot be conceptualized in its absence.
So in reality, to say esoterism is to imply exoterism, and vice versa:
The word “esoterism” suggests in the first place an idea of complementarity, of a “half” as it were: esoterism is the complement of exoterism, it is the “spirit” which completes the “letter" (Schuon).
Now, as we have said many times, in any Primordial Complementarity one pole must be prior, even if we never see them apart. For example, there is no subject without an object, but obviously subjectivity could never occur in a purely objective universe. Therefore, the subject must be prior, and ultimately this Subject-Intellect is God, but that's beside -- or above, rather -- the point.
The Point being that herebelow Truth takes a form, but the substance of truth cannot be reduced to its form, for the same reason that the subject can't be reduced to object, or semantics to syntax.
As we mentioned in the previous post, we can express the same truth in an infinite number of ways, even if some ways are necessarily better -- not forgetting more beautiful -- than others. Come to think of it, the "best way" will be characterized by a maximum of truth, beauty, and goodness, by light and warmth and glorious living color.
But we can't actually see pure light, can we? Or, we can see it for a moment, just before it renders us permanently blind. Humanly speaking, light for us is helpfully given the appearance of color, and Schuon often uses this analogy to distinguish pure formless truth from the forms it takes:
the word “esoterism” designates not only the total truth inasmuch as it is “colored” by entering a system of partial truth, but also the total truth as such, which is colorless. This distinction is not a mere theoretical luxury; on the contrary, it implies extremely important consequences.
We live in a cognitive prismhouse of intellectual color-forms, and these forms simultaneously convey and veil the whitelight of Truth.
Now, what is the most "esoteric" thing that could possibly happen in this cosmos?
Hmm. I suppose it would be for the pure Light to actually become one of its colors: for the Light to become color that the color might become Light.
We'll end with some passages from this intriguing new translation and interpretation of John, called Mary's Voice in the Gospel (linked in the sidebar):
In him, there was life, and this Life was the light of all humankind....
The genuine light, the light which brings light to every human being, now coming into the world -- this is what he was.
He was in the world! [?!] And the world had come to be through him, and the world did not know him....
The Gift and the Truth came to be through Jesus Christ.
Again, it doesn't get more esoteric than this. As John (the Baptizing-Esoterist) exclaimed in his bewilderness,
After me there is coming a man who is placed before me, because before I was, he was.
Wut? Pakulak claims that in verse 18, a better reading of "only-begotten Son" is "Only-Begotten God." Apparently God never stops giving birth to himself, hisword; and we are invited to likewise give birth to this Godword in the womb of our godward soul: mission accompliced!
And out of this Nothingness God was born (Meister Eckhart).