Sermon 01: Caodaist Esotericism
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Sách : The Esoteric Doctrine of Caodaism - Sermons by His Holiness HỘ PHÁP PHẠM CÔNG TẮC
Tác Giả : Translated by CHRISTOPHER HARTNEY and TỪ CHƠN

Sermon 01: Caodaist Esotericism

Lunar Calendar: 5th Day of the 4th Month, Year of the Buffalo.
Gregorian Calendar: May 2nd 1949

From now on, I will preach about Caodaist Esotericism.

This is the most difficult topic to preach upon and the most important one for you Caodaists to comprehend. All Caodaist Dignitaries, especially the divinely ordained ones, know all current religions have been distorted.

Why? Because of centuries of corruption to the original messages. As a result, those old religious practices are no longer suitable for human awareness. Moreover, humans are now so mentally advanced that the ancient religious philosophies cannot keep them in moral rectitude any longer. The ethical principles made by religious founders have become too simple for mankind.

Jesus Christ, the most conversationally competent religious founder, who founded Christianity, the latest religion on earth, had enough power to introduce Christian exotericism, which arises from the ethical foundation for mankind. As for esotericism, however, He just told His disciples, especially the twelve Apostles:
- There are highly advanced philosophies, which cannot be preached because you cannot comprehend them yet.

That is why Christians do not practice esotericism.

Now, coming through seances, God established His religion (Cao Đài) to improve human morality. Ignoring any worldly powers, In this way he taught His children the secret power of creation. His new religion differs from other ancient religions.

All entities in this universe contain two relevant components. First, the visible laws called exotericism and second, the invisible laws called esotericism. Esotericism is religiously critical because it helps us examine natural principles. All religions, as well as Cao Đài, should have both visible and invisible laws.

Why should visible laws be examined? To understand the invisible laws, if examined thoroughly, visible laws will reveal invisible ones.

To put it another way, take how rice is cooked. First, rice is prepared, rinsed, and boiled. To have a good dish, you have to add an appropriate amount of water and set the fire suitably. Or making a cake, you need flour, sugar and egg. All of them need to be prepared well before being baked so that you can have a delicious cake. All of the ingredients are considered exotericism and the hidden process esotericism.

Similarly, the natural power of creation has its own laws. The ones we can observe are exoteric and the opposing and unseen ones esoteric. It is these invisible laws that decide whether an earthly religion lasts long or does not last. Having come to earth, God shows both the esoteric and exoteric laws for humans to understand their philosophy.

From today, I will first preach exotericism then esotericism in ensuring sermons. A basic knowledge of exotericism will unveil the esoteric dimensions. I advise you Caodaists not to be indifferent anymore. You have to focus hard on studying Caodaist philosophy in order to gain enlightenment. I should have written some books on this topic, but I think speech is faster than writing.

Until next time.
Vietnamese source