You know the axiom: the solution to every diagnosis begins with a unified theory.
Like mathematics, understanding this comes in varying degrees of difficulty beginning when we are children and the learning process first begins; always as a blank slate. It is the same with people starting out as families, then clans, then tribes, etc, moving up to nations. At the beginning they all had the sparsest of beginnings, and for the longest time no way to put any of that history down. So they did it orally, from memory.
Man has been around for over 300,000 years, but only figured out a way to put his history down in writing about 5000 years ago. Still, Man observed things, accumulated knowledge, then figured many things out, then passed it on. No one still knows for sure just how we did that but we are reasonably certain that 1) staying alive and 2) regenerating themselves were highest on the survival to-do lists. Natural Law. Modern science is still uncertain when Man began to connect these dots, but it was noteed by anthropologists studying primitive Pacific Islanders, Margaret Mead I think, who observed that tribes there made no direct casual connection between the sex act and pregnancy and child birth. Many primitive peoples just gave the gods the credit.
In fact, almost universal among all the pre-civilization people was a belief in higher beings gifting them all good things, from children to land to grow crops. The ancient Egyptians credited their gods for the fertile land around the Nile. In more recent history, the late 19th-early 20th-century, no American Indian ever took the credit for anything that sustained their lives. They gave all the credit to “the gods”, which tells us they had not discovered vanity (a deadly vice) to the point that it became self-destructive.
Even Neanderthals, distant, distant cousins, to Homo sapiens, but who shared territory with them until they disappeared about 40,000 years ago, have been found buried ritually, meaning they too acknowledged “the gods”.
So long before writing Man knew God in several different ways and by a variety of names. And knowledge of these things was passed on, from generation to generation, but only by word of mouth. Fable. Oral history….centered around what Natural Law considers two of the most elemental lessons of survival, first, reminding current generations of the shoulders they stand on, and secondly, a reminder of where all Good things come from.
As Man grew up, moving from caves to arable ground, then forming larger groups, even nations, all the way to the era of Christ, when B.C. was moved to A.D., Man’s first big change was in the rise of kings, which were accompanied by other discoveries, such as extracting copper and mixing with tin to produce bronze, the first “manufactured” metal, about 5500 years ago, or 3500 BC. The Bronze Age. Now, none of the peoples who discovered this process were Russian (at least we think, since Russians never invented any great ideas, they only steal them), but this seemed to happen at about the same time around the globe, either coincidentally or by an Invisible Hand. And Man’s life changed dramatically. For with the Bronze Age suddenly 90% (give or take) of mankind fell under the thumb of what we today call “kings”, including of course their retinues; military/police, bureaucracies of a sort, and priests who gave due credit to the gods…but only for the blessings those gods had bestowed upon the few, not the many.
Things haven’t really changed all that much since, for this was when the math of Natural Law became skewed, and religion became man-made, and aimed at only those few.
One of the interesting questions kids used to ask, besides “Where did Seth and Cain find wives if Adam and Eve didn’t produce any girls in the Garden of Eden?” was “Was Heaven pretty much empty before Jesus died on the Cross?” Good question actually, and most Christian faiths have come up with answers, but also based on their particular reading of Scriptures.
But on reading the Old Testament you have to admit, from Adam’s genealogy in Genesis, thru Noah, to Abraham, to Moses, Joshua, David, and those few Kings who did things that were “pleasing in Yahweh’s eyes”, and a myriad of prophets, including two who were taken straight up without dying, most would think maybe Heaven was a pretty sparse place that first 298,000 years. A few thousand people at most. (My wife would insist that humans notwithstanding, Heaven had to be filled with cats, since all cats are innocent, and all go to Heaven. This is the one debate we can never have, especially since she insists that only “good” dogs go to Heaven.)
And it took the better part of 1000 years for Jesus to flip the world, and then only a portion of it. Even after Christ ascended (if you believe this sort of stuff) there were only 120 missionaries to carry His Good News message forward after Pentecost. But once again, do the math, and try to imagine how fast your message would have to grow if you had to advertise this miracle door-to-door in a town you’d just walked into, without knowing a soul? It was slow going, taking about 300 years for the Church of Rome to be founded (in Constantinople, not Rome) with no one knows how many active members. Several thousand? Still hounded by off-and-on persecutions, it would take another 500 years for the Roman Church to get a foothold in Europe, and then, by signing what in essence was a power-sharing agreement with the pagan kings of Europe, creating the Holy Roman Empire. The Church got 10% up-front and no longer had to hide in olive groves to preach their message.
This was a mixed blessing for the Church, for it got exclusive rights to the people, who were 80% serfs, so they didn’t have to send out missionaries to their hamlets any longer. And much like modern corporations today, the Church, being virtually the only people in the Holy Roman Empire to be able to read and write, its priests also became the scribes of the royal classes, for nearly 900 years, until a German named Guttenberg invented the printing press, which made reading a more desirable and universal hobby for all people, so very much hated by the Church and the ruling classes.
In another 100 years, many members of the Roman Church in Germany, Holland, Scandinavia and England, would jump ship altogether. It was called the Reformation, which the Roman Church has never forgiven us English especially for doing, since some of our forefathers formed this nation in the American wilderness barely a century after the Reformation began, inventing a model of self-government that even today the modern Church has never totally approved, mostly because our forefathers placed all power in that same 80% of the people the old Church had never believed capable of governing themselves.
Which brings us to the crux of the unified theory of the math of Natural Law.
When Christ preached, He preached only to the common people. That same 80%-90%. That’s the key.
Even if they’d had Twitter, Jesus would not have spent time bad-mouthing the Romans or the Sadducees or Pharisees, or even the pagan Greeks who had preceded them. What Christ did was personalize God, so that He could enter into each individual personally. Great preachers and teachers know instinctively that you have to do that face-to-face. Christ proclaimed Himself to be the Door. He didn’t reach out to the political or government class, but only the People, who He identified when He blessed them by groups on the Mount; the poor of spirit, those who mourn, the meek, the merciful, poor at heart, the peacemakers, those who hunger and thirst after righteousness.
Powerful words and powerful grants.
If you want to know what can regenerate people without gimmicks, read first Matthew 5, for it is not only religious, it is a guideline to how things work in human survival; how that whole “love thy neighbor” silliness trumps almost all the gluttonies, vanities, lust, greed, pride, anger and pride, sometimes within a blinking of an eye, as when a condemned criminal looked at the Man on the cross next to him, and with his dying breath said “I believe”. And he was saved.
So, when a new baby is born, it is but to breathe into it that breath of knowledge (gnosis), all based on love, and the difference between the seven Virtues, and their corresponding arch enemies, the Deadly Vices.