"I speak to the divine, yet the divine says nothing in return.

I beseech the divine, yet the winds blow the same,

I implore the divine, and a dog barks in the distance,

I praise the divine, and an eagle passes overhead."


"He with all the answers knows nothing."


"Father God, Mother Divine, spare us the pains you've wrought upon us, sooth our wounds, wash us of our sin and stain, and grant us peace, now in our hour of need an in the moment of death."


The Seven Contemplations

Things to contemplate in prayer and meditation:

1.  The ineffable mystery of existence, life and death, and the depth of our ignorance of it.  

2.  The vastness of the world, the stars, the sun, the wheeling galaxies, the great endless vault, the energy of the storm.

3.  The random terror of disaster in the world, and our expendability and insignificance within it. 

(Miradi does not assume that the world is just, or that life is fair, and requires us to accept its "unfairness" as part of our submission to the Divine.) 

4.  The weakness in all flesh, including ourselves, leading to loneliness, pain, illness and death, by which we are subject to the power of the world.  

5.  The spirit, ishra, that moves among men, that fills men's hearts.

6.  The community, the family, and the community of believers.

7.  The duty that life puts upon us, the duty of care, of mindfulness, of right living.

The Six Affects

Here "affect" means "feeling, emotion," which to the Bergonians refers to emotions that one can cultivate and discipline.  To these people, emotions are strengths like muscularity and appetites-- they are facilities that one can develop or control with practice.

1.  awe/fear/astonishment.  ("I am astonished that anything exists at all." Wittgenstein)

2.  resignation/acceptance/ serenity.

3.  humility.

4.  gratitude, for our lives and for the people and good things in our lives,

5.  compassion for all living things-- this is the empathetic sense awoken by the universal axiom, "do to others as you would have others do to you."

6.  thuase (Min.) "watchfulness, deliberateness, patient thought, consideration."

And of course there are the six opposites:

1.  complacency.

2.  desire.

3.  pride.

4.  greed.

5.  hatred, contempt, cold-heartedness.

6.  miase (Min.) carelessness, lack of self-discipline, impulsiveness.





The Miradi Religion

Simplest of faiths

 New !  a long, detailed article on the Prophet Krathnami's life and thought

The Nature of the Divine -- The less said about God's attributes, the wiser.

The Law -- The principles by which time, change, birth & death, and the universe unfold.

Ceremonies and Rites 

Priests & Priestesses -- Because of the male-female aspect of God, priests and priestesses together serve Him/Her.

The Prophet Krathnami founded the faith around 980 A.D.

Evil -- There is no Satan, except the devil living inside the human heart.

The Miradi Worldview

The Book of Dreams  

The Ancient Gods  --  the Shufrantei gods still provide literary motifs and religious metaphors.



1.  The Principle of Unknowability.  Here is the most peculiar aspect of this religion, distinguishing it from all others-- its official agnosticism in virtually all the questions that religions presume to answer.  The divine is beyond all attributions can make, and so the question of polytheism vs. monotheism was altogether dismissed by Krathnami, as were all questions about death, the afterlife, the nature of the soul, and the scheme of the cosmos.  In the most extreme manifestation of Miradi skepticism, some believers will not bring themselves to admit that there is such a thing as the soul.  Krathnami said, "Do not fret about questions for which there are no answers.  Instead, take the trouble to know yourself and find the divinity that is available to you here and now."

2.  The Principle of Divinity.  Inasmuch as Miradi develops theory about anything at all, Miradi generally follows the belief that the divine (vai) is immanent in and throughout the world, and that the divinity animates the world and all the things in it.  This qualifies Miradi as a pantheist religion. The general speculation is either that (a) vai, the divine, is one of the elements in the world that animates things and constitute the world (an idea called hylozoism), or that (b) the world emanates from vai, and the very essence of all things is vai.  The divinity is as well present within the human personality, so that even the basest miscreant has a divine essence.  The manifestation of vai, the universal divinity, within an indivdual person's mind and soul is call the ishra (Nac.), an ancient Shufrantei term adopted by Krathnami.

3.  The Principle of Monism.  Miradi sees the universe as  essentially monistic, not dualistic or pluralistic.  Miradi is perplexed by the dualism that has so thoroughly pervaded "West Eurasian," i.e. Classical, Christian & Muslim culture and religion, that assumes the fundamental dyad of material vs. spiritual," holy vs. profane, and soul vs. body.  Miradi assumes the basic unity of the world, where the unitary divine propagates and infuses the unitary world and the things in it.  Although there may be many different realms, varieties and forms in the universe, there are no dualistic cosmic opposites-- the whole basic scheme of [heavenly-holy-spiritual] v. [evil-profane-secular-earthly-flesh] is alien, and not supportable by evidence or reason.

4.  The Principle of Negation, which results from the two previous, correlates with the Buddhism denial of all forms and categories, although the Buddhists are more absolute on this point.  Here we find that all identity is illusory or at least transitory, that essence is more important than form, and that there is no real being or mind or identity beyond the One.

5.  The Principle of Accessibility.  The immanence of the divine in the world implies that the divine is present in human life at all time, and accessible to any individual. The Principle of Accessibility means that each man and woman can access the divine, discovering it and cultivating it within themselves.  Thus there is no need for priests and there is no need for ritual.

6.  The Principle of Sentience.   Miradi not only sees the divine in everything, but also sees sentience in all things, particularly in animals ("creatures with eyes").  This view is called "panpsychism," and holds virtually that to exist is to be sentient in some degree. ("even the reaching vine can sense the overhanging limb.")  This is the principle that levels everything down to the same level of moral consideration.

8.  The Principle of Temporality.  All things known to us are changeable, and subject to destruction and termination.  The world is in a state of temporary flux.  Absolutely anti-Aristotelian. This is also the Principle of Death, following out the fact that all things come to an end.

7.  The Principle of Suffering.  The two prior principles give rise to this one.  Sentience and temporality guarantee suffering.  Sentience of death, moreover, makes one fear and produces anxiety (see Ernest Becker).

9.  The Principle of Equity.  The Principle of Sentience implies that all things deserve moral consideration, and the Principles of Suffering and Temporality reduces everything to the same reality, and thus all capable of mutual understanding.



"Belief" by itself is nothing but useless cognition.  The point of Miradi is provide freedom from of illusion and cultivate receptiveness to the divine, which is impossible without firm, devout practice.

  • Cultivate love for God in your heart.  Pray to God at least once in the morning and once in the evening.  Pray faithfully.  "Words are strong."  "Bind yourself to the Gods with strong ropes of prayer."  "If your heart is too weak to guide your words, let your words guide your heart."

  • Attend ritual purification. (See Ceremonies)

  • Do not harm others. Have compassion for others. ("Others" includes all animals , because animals are kindred creatures, also created and loved by God).  Everyone is your kinsman, and we all belong to one big clan.

  • Help the less fortunate, including widows, crippled people and orphans (and also animals in need). Give alms.  Defend the weak, as dictated by the ancient banda code.

  • Modest Living:  Refrain from eating or drinking too much.  Don't live lavishly or ostentatiously.

  • Do not eat meat.  If you do, pray for communion with the animal.  If you hunt or slaughter for food, you must pray to the animal, kill cleanly and quickly,  and then afterwards attain purification.  (This has given rise to a Bergonian form of kosher.)

  • Live cleanly, bathe often, dress in clean simple clothes.

  • Behave modestly.  Never boast.  Refrain from speaking about yourself.

  • Speak inoffensively.  Never an ill word against God or man.  Don't utter insults or spread gossip. "Words are daggers by which we wound others; words are poison by which we poison ourselves."  "Gossip is no less a sin than poisoning someone's food."

  • Value beauty.  Mediate upon the beautiful. The Gods speak through the world's beauty.  In beauty the Gods dance.

A person who lives this life will cause as little disturbance  as possible on the face of an already dangerous and precarious universal balance, including the balance within himself. This life depends on something similar to what the Buddhists call "mindfulness," but also a more practical sense of "taking care," taking very great conscious care about one's actions, like careful stepping across the ice, so as to avoid mistakes and harm to others.  

Brash and bold actions of greedy and willful men inevitably unleash chains of cause and effect resulting in harm to the natural order and to its creatures-- animal and human.  Good Miradi devotees want to avoid this.  

Doing good creates a beneficent effect, largely a calming and nourishing effect on others, so that people improved and prospered. This reduplicating influence of one's actions-- evil resulting from evil and good resulting from good-- provided either maleficent or good nutrition for those around.  Likewise, we are inspired to good or evil from the other people in our lives.  (This is part of the social consciousness that permeates most Berg thought.)

Other traditional and religious cultures embrace the same ethos of behavior:

“So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Trouble no one about their religion; respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours. Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life. Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide. Always give a word or a sign of salute when meeting or passing a friend, even a stranger, when in a lonely place. Show respect to all people and grovel to none. When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself. Abuse no one and no thing, for abuse turns wise ones to fools and robs the spirit of its vision. When it comes your time to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with the fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song and die like a hero going home.” -- Chief Tecumseh, Shawnee Nation.


  • Devotion.  Pray to God daily, usually once a day, either prayers of praise and thanks, prayers seeking inner strength, prayers of contemplation, and intercessionary prayer for the benefit of someone else.  A specific form of prayer cultivated by Miradi and earlier Berg religions is "Active Prayer," conscious contemplation of, and communication with, the divine while acting, e.g. while at work, while walking or driving.

  • Meditation as in the tradition of Buddhism & the other eastern religions.

  • Poverty  It is necessary in the cultivation of holiness to avoid temptations of the luxuries of the world.

  • Good work.  It is necessary in the cultivation of holiness to serve others.


Important to the nature of the faith are the antecedents of Arcan and Icotesi-- co-equal gods of different sexes--  and Krathnami, a man who couldn't have done his life's work without his woman, and Sesnan, a woman who continued the work after the man died. The result of these antecedents is a view that the sexes are equally able to perform all the religious offices.

Thus there are priests and priestess. There were priestesses as well under the older Shufrantei religion, but they were subservient to the priests. Only the priests could preside over the rites,  although the priestesses assisted, and in fact  most of the rites required both a male and female priest, but a priestess could not administer any of the sacramental rites without a priest present.  Krathnami changed all this.  He said that priestesses could conduct the rites alone. He said they could do all the things that priests could.

As in the Shufrantei orders there were the "high" clergy and the "regular" clergy.  The "regular" or "Wide Order" priesthood can marry and have children.  It is common for priests and priestesses to marry one another. Many of them live in the community, near their temples, and service their flocks quite like the ministers of the Protestant Christian churches.  Others work in missions, doing charity, hospital and hospice work. Many become "priest-counselors"-- actually the equivalent of masters level training in psychology (of the Bergonian variety)-- and "priest-teachers"-- automatically eligible to teach in public schools providing they have certification in the subject matter.  The Wide Order can hold other jobs in the regular economy as well, although tradition and common sense bar them from the military (except as chaplains), any form of banking or trading, all politics, or any meat-handling.

The "High Order" priests and priestess follow a far more restrictive regimen. They fast regularly (usually every sixth day), avoid all ostentation, and abstain from meat, intoxicants and sex.  All priests start as Wide Order and perhaps one out of ten progress to the High Order.  If a Wide Order priest was married at the time he was admitted to the High Order he had to refrain from sex with their spouse, and their spouses could divorce them.  But a priest was single at time time of his appointment he could not marry at all.  Many lower order priests and priestesses married each other, and they sometimes together made the step up to the higher order, and live a celibate, spiritual bond.

High order priests usually live away from the public, usually in rural monasteries, but sometimes within temples complexes located near or in the cities. The largest monasteries housed over a thousand priests and priestesses (both high and low order), but most were very small, with as few as ten. Priests and priestesses live in separate quarters, and sometimes in segregated facilities.  Their devotions included reading, instruction and discussion, chanted prayer, physical movement (similar to Tai Chi), purification, silent prayer, and meditation. 


Early on, soon after the Prophet's death, his disciples started a practice of holding huge conventions in the city of Chambolet every four years.  Doctrinal disputes were taken up then, and everyone assembled offered up intercessory prayers to the Divine.

The five square mile complex of Ser-Alei, "Place of the willows, in Chambolet became the center of the new faith, and there at the center the priests and priestesses laid out a festival ground for the conventions.  Thousands of priests, priestesses and believers every four years attend the Festival of Iritlema-- it was always understood that this convocation was for the clergy and not for the laity, though the laity has never been turned away, and as many as a hundred-thousand lay people do attend each time.

The convention grounds within Ser-Alei were laid out around eight big flagpoles, themselves arranged in a circle.  Around each of the flagpoles was a mess tent, lecterns for preaching and speeches-- for the priests & priestesses came to hear each other-- and a prayer chapel.  Every priest & priestess upon arrival went to one of the eight flags and settled in there.  It was a system of free association, producing eight caucuses or communities at the convention.

In time these evolved into eight permanent factions or denominations-- still called Flags.  Every temples and every other Miradi institution is connected with one-- and in some cases two or three-- of the Flags.

Each of the Eight Flags has its own emphasis and slant, but it is important to understand that the similarities far outweigh the distinctions.  The Eight Flags are:

Kaldomon-- the "spirit-fighters" who still admit to magic and miracles in the world, and engage in practices of faith healing and other intercessionary prayer and ritual.

Caifroite-- these are the "purifiers" who stress the old Shufrantei rite of purification that survived into Miradi.  They conduct the ritual often with much enthusiasm, joy and song, and they are mystical.

Gleire -- the "devotionalists" inherited all the mystical and meditative tendencies in Bergonian religion, dating back to the "Forest Tradition" of Shufrantei.  They stress the need to withdraw from mundane life and meditate.  This is the most monastic of the eight.

Suvana -- the "common" tradition, stressing teaching, community work and everyday practice.

Sheluva -- the "simplifiers" are less rigorous than most of the other sects, and tend to be "in the world."  They are the most political of the Flags, but also stress the everyday practice of the faith.

Cumen -- the "methodical" sect, the "winter" sect.

Icoren -- the "happy" sect, the "crickets," specializing in schools, orphanages and work with children.  The most likely of the sects to refer back to pre-Miradi traditions & myths.

Paminocein -- the "worker" sect, known for its outreach, its common ways, its devotion to community service.  They are the one Flag that sends missionaries overseas to do relief work.

These descriptions are almost as much caricatures as anything else.

Every four years at the Chambolet convocations each of the Flags elects a prelate to coordinate the affairs of the denomination until the next convocation.  Each denomination has a permanent headquarters, with staff; all eight are located in countryside monasteries.

No revelation, no "personal savior" or anointed prophet, no chosen people, no promise of paradise, and no threat of hell.

This religion is a "psychological religion" (like Buddhism) that concentrates on the process of self-improvement-- "purifying" the bad stuff and cultivating the holiness within.  The goal is to quiet the ego, "attain perfect vision," and become sentient to the holiness in the self, in the world, and beyond.

Of the world's religions, Miradi probably has most in common with Judaism, Sufism, Quakerism, "Universalist Unitarianism," Taoism. or Cao Dai.


Humankind is afflicted with a defect of ego, and thus is permeated with false pride and selfishness.  Ego resists the reality of the body and the physical universe, including the fact of death.  Thus there is suffering, delusion, false heroism, and fear.  Ego and social lies blinds humankind to the divine that underlies and animates all the physical universe.  The process of spiritual & psychological "purification" quiets the ego, disarms suffering, dispels delusion, and opens the doors to eternal life.  An unpurified spirit gets too attached to the body, becomes weak and vulnerable, and suffers the body's death.  A purified spirit becomes strong and capable of surviving physical death and moving on to the afterlife.

Sun disk emblems are commonly used by the Miradi.  This emblem is one of many "flying suns."  Sun emblems were previously used by Shufrantei believers as a symbol for the male solar god Arcan.  The symbol was co-opted, just as Islam co-opted the Crescent from early Eastern Christianity.


1.  A Godly presence, vai (Min.), the "Divine," presides over the world, underlies it, and infuses everything in it.  ("I am the roof, the beams and the foundation. I am the pegs, the grain in the wood, and the clay in the tiles") 

But the Divine manifests through many faces and aspects.  ("I have no face, but many masks; all the faces you see are my masks.") 

The Divine is understood as the force behind all creation, the generating force, the force that makes change inevitable.  Thus the primary assumption of Miradi is pantheism.

2a.  The only other attributes of God which men and women can ever know are:

(a) holiness/"godliness," which is of course a tautology, but which to Bergonians means the generative, creative force, which is to say God in the role of Creator, and

(b) omnipotence, which means omnipresence beyond & before all time, space, measure and attribute, at least beyond the world perceivable by and knowable to humankind. 

2b.  Otherwise all other attributes of God are unknowable and unassumable. 

Therefore Miradi formally repudiated the old Shufrantei doctrine of a dual or polytheistic God-- although Miradi believers even now typically swing back and forth between referring to "God" and "the Gods," and still refer to Arcan and Icotesi and the other Shufrantei deities by name.  MIradi similarly regards the Christian Trinity as wholly unsupportable, and only a  little less absurd than Shufrantei polytheism. 

Miradi may appear more akin to Judaism and Islam, which both see God as singular and unified (as do most Christians on a gut level).  But Miradi will not embrace strict monotheism any more readily than any elaborate dogmatic conception of a multiplex deity.  Monotheisim no less than polytheism is a typically human attempt to trap reality within the grammatical and syntactic boxes in his head.  The Singular is not necessary better than polytheism.

Miradi stubbornly stands on the ground that "the man, the woman, with good sense and reason know nothing of the divine."   All claims by all religions are false, and fall to rational and empirical scrutiny.  No revelation has ever occurred that would have shed any light on the universal mysteries.

3.  The universe operates by force and definition of pei -- "natural law"-- which is to say a unitary and cohesive system of processes of change, a symphonic harmony of complimentary elements, all emerging from the divinity.  The existence of such law is self-evident in the recurring patterns of change.  ("Every night I tear the house down.  Every morning I build the house anew.")   People associated building (creation) with dancing, and so throughout Bergonian history people danced all night upon completing the construction of a house, a reenactment of the creation, and the "rules" of the dance, that is the dance steps, are analogous to pei.  Of course the Principle of Unknowability cautions us against presuming to know all, or even very much, of pei.

4.   God gave to humankind reason and language (e.g. "logos"), and also the vision to perceive time, to sort memories and to understand the future.  These facilities This is where humankind acquired power that the other animals do not have.  And here the realm of paradoxes opened to man, because we are so troubled by "knowing what [we] do not know."  

5.  Human reason & language produced excessive ego and excessive desire.  The moderate desires of animals became exaggerated in the endless passion for fetishes.  There is an inexplicable flaw in our awareness, meaning that we are not integrated inn our souls.  In this way the Gods' great gifts to humankind were not complete, leaving this "super-animal" by nature imperfect and flawed and the slave of passions.  A man or woman is aware of death, aware of the inevitability of pain and passing, and yet tragically isolated from God.  This is so because illusions come to fill his mind and suppress his holiness.  It is the basic nature of the fundamental flaw that men and women are slaves of self-made illusions.  The fundamental flaw thus is a flaw in perception.

6.  "Evil" is not a distinct concept in this religion, though it categorizes with the notion of "deviance," as in "deviance from the law."  "Cruelty" and "malice" are the primary sins.  There is no devil-deity, and it is absurd to think that evil exists outside of, or prior to, humankind.  A Miradi believer would say that what we call evil first appeared in the world when it appeared in the human heart.

7.  There are things a man can do to become acquainted with the Divine.  He can come to see how his passions are based on his illusions.  Through self-awareness he may become aware of the divine within.  He may become reconciled to the world.  Through "the disciplines of faith" he may gain vision.  So If man ceases his resistance to the constraints upon his life, and tames his passions and seeks to purify himself, then God will shower love upon him.  The purpose of the faith is to achieve union with God, to awaken and gain vision of the holy, to submit to the law and submerse oneself in the harmony. To achieve this surrender, Krathnami, the prophet of the Miradi faith, prescribed a way of devotion.

See a detailed article on Krathnami's life and thought


Thus Miradi has a most minimal theology concerning God or the Holy.  There is no revelation, no avatar, no anointed one, no bodhisattva.  There is no communion, rite, baptism, hajj or other mechanism to trigger God's grace. 

Krathnami's "minimalist" theology admitted nothing to the Shufrantei duality, and refused it along with all other speculation on God's nature.  But later revisionist theologians could not resist trying to justify the duinity. As one theologian of the 1200's stated,

"Since God remains concealed from us behind the curtain of mystery, we know of him-and-her only what he-and-she reveal to us. We can see God as Arkan-and-Icotesi because we so easily perceive the dual nature of all the things in the world and within ourselves.  We are so confounded by the variety of pairings and dyads in the world, that the only thing we can be sure of is the two-ness of things.  God stirs the spirit within us to conceive of him-and-her as him-and-her."

But the true Miradi centers on an undifferentiated all-pervasive, impersonal God, who is "absolute, omniscient and omnipotent."  Drawing on ancient appellations for Arkan and Icotesi, the Miradi worshipers refer to God as "Ever-present," "Piercing Eye" and "Fire-Eye"-- a God far more immanent than the Christian God, and yet more impersonal.  A stylized eye has become the symbol for the faith.

The core doctrine explicitly dismissed the Shufrantei "duinity" as utterly unsupportable, in keeping with the primary teaching that "the Divine lies beyond mankind's horizon."   But, despite the sense and power of Miradi theological minimalism, Arkan and Icotesi and their mythological progeny still have tremendous appeal to the popular Bergonian imagination. The theologians themselves indulge in lively use of the ancient mythology as a metaphorical language of ultimate religious truth. No one in modern Bergonia takes the old Shufrantei Gods literally, but everyone knows their stories (much as Renaissance Christians knew and enjoyed Classical mythology), and uses them to convey religious and moral truths.

Miradi believers do refer to one attribute of God of which they have no doubt, borrowed this from the teachings of Ierecina, the transcendence of the Divine above time, and above all creation.  However the Miradi do not say that "God created the universe."  They are more inclined to say that "the universe flow from God."  In any case they understand that God preceded time and dimension, that in turn preceded fill the world. In modern times, the Big Bang theory of creation fits in nicely with the Miradi.

“The Divine is without qualities; the Divine precedes all qualities; all qualities come from within Divine; and thus all qualities are of God.”


Christianity, Islam and other religions in Eurasia promise an afterlife paradise in compensation for devotion and obedience in this life, and punishment for sin.  Hinduism and Buddhism promised a payoff after death too, either by reincarnation into a superior form of life or release from the karmic cycle into Nirvana, in compensation for the accumulation of merit.  Shufrantei rewarded obedience by delivery to the Mansions of Heaven.

Several  things that  preoccupy the religious the world over held little interest for Krathnami.  One was the afterlife.  Krathnami remained convinced that the good among humankind would enjoy an afterlife, but refused to elaborate.  He admitted that the afterlife was one of God's mysteries.   Shufrantei, a moral religion, held that those who incurred favor with Arkan and Icotesi would go on to an afterlife in the mansions of heaven, while the Gods would cast the souls of evil men and women into the Abyss.  Krathnami countered this by arguing  that good behavior was its own reward, and any persons who felt motivated to good deeds or  piety because of concerns about the afterlife would labor under gross delusions.  He urged his disciples to piety and morality for their own sake and expect nothing in return from either life or God.  One might suffer persecution, sickness, abuse from others and then a horrible death and no afterlife, but still, he argued, the "sensitive life" as he called it several times bore its own internal fruits, because of "the ineffable beauty that grows out of the peaceful mind."  To him goodness carried a satisfaction that made all other considerations superfluous.  "The love of God becomes its own reward," he said.  

To many Miradi believers, it seems absurd that a loving god would create an eternal hell.  It seems more absurd that the suffering of hell or reincarnation would be the natural fate of human souls, while only the elect, the saved, the holy men, the ones who speak the right name, would go to paradise.


Miradi has never seriously debated predestination, for it is enough that we feel like autonomous creatures, and have at least the apparent capacity to make moral decisions.  To embrace predestination was a logically coherent outgrowth of belief in an absolute dictator-god, but contradictory to direct experience.  However logical predestination seemed, it reduced human life to a sham, a bad joke where our acts are predetermined but where we still experience the anguish of indecision and remorse over decisions we think we made.   

The essential problem is that mankind is a defective creature. The existential dilemma arises from excessive awareness of individuality, causing him to deal constantly with "the other" vs. himself. With full awareness of the situation, he ceases to focus on the divide between himself and the world, but will instead experience himself as a part of the world around him. The defective vision of mankind causes him to not see beyond the divide.  Later Miradi philosophers and sages contemplated the possibility that the defect in perception conceals from mankind's understanding the very nature of the defect itself.  

Many other credos & philosophies echo this view.  Judaism and Christianity assumes the original sin of mankind, which debases him and separates him from God.  Hinduism imagines mankind trapped and blinded by Maya (illusion), and Buddhism sees human suffering the inevitable result of human desire.  Freud and his progeny portrayed humankind as repressed and neurotic.

If a person cleared his own vision, he would see the holy all around himself, and in himself.  Ritual provided a cleansing experience. It drew the holy to the participants. the God's grace focused on the rites. Since the problem in the human experience is in bad vision, the matter of focus becomes paramount.  Ritual abets focus.  In a more advanced way, prayer and meditation allow even stronger focus.

"Extend your cup; the Gods will fill it," promised Krathnami.


From God flows forth the Law, which in Nacateca is Pei. It is not to be construed at all like the "Law" of the Old Testament Hebrews which is nothing more than a set of authoritarian commandments to govern human behavior as terms of a "covenant."   Pei is natural immutable law, more like dharma in Buddhism, but also includes the "scientific" laws that describe phenomena in the physical world. Pei predetermines the creation and generation of all things, and governs the forms and movement of everything in the universe, including humanity.  The Gods' will becomes manifest through the Law, and thus the Law makes all things predictable.

Therefore, the Law resembles somewhat the Western concept of natural law, except that in the Bergonian universe, the laws of the physical universe and the moral law all come from the same place and work in the same inexorable way.

"God's breath issues the law.

Through the law emerges all bounty.

Through the law emerges all beauty.

The sun traverses the heavens and lights the world,

the moon waxes and wanes and charms the night,

both by virtue of the Law."

The theologians express the law in terms of fundamental principles or axioms, called paira, which usually read like proverbs or maxims. Paira are defined as "the self-evident and self-supporting truths of the universe," from which all wisdom is implied.  Many times, the learned ones will debate whether a particular proposition is, or isn't, a paira. Examples of paira are: "All things age and die," "Every force has its opposite," "Impurity suffocates the soul, while purity feeds the soul," and "All motion affects other life."

The paira as a body are described and understood by virtue of paira themselves. For example one paira says, "The Gods do not reveal all paira to humankind," and another says, "The truth of paira does not fit within the words of paira."

See a detailed article on Krathnami's life and thought









Krathnami and Sesnan, his companion, wrestled with what of their two religions was true, what was not true, and what was beyond saying.  This required them to decide on tests and methods, on a way of analyzing the religions.

This led Krathnami and Sesnan to engage into the realm question of epistemology, and thereby set the precedent of beginning all inquiry with an examination of what we (think we) know and how do we know it (and think we know it).


Krathnami and Sesnan undertook to criticize all the religious doctrines by inquiring, essentially, "how do we know this to be true?" Krathnami very acutely focused on epistemology (the study of the basis or essence of knowledge).  "A wise man cannot assume, and cannot claim to know what he cannot show."  He first asked, "how do we know that all these gods and goddesses exist?"  We do not experience the divinity by our senses, but we obtain most of our knowledge from our senses.  In modern times Miradi theologians/philosophers have identified closely with the English pessimists and empiricists.

He ended up rejecting most of the doctrine of the various Shufrantei sects and the Hiestat.  He did this, not out of destructive reductionism, but in order to achieve a synthesis.  In other words, Krathnami intended to distill all the religions down to their common components in order to acheive a common unitary religion.

He ended up establishing an entire philosophy of knowledge, which established methods for testing beliefs and propositions.


The beginning place for all of Krathnami's truths had to do with how men and women acquire knowledge and know anything.  His first step was in the epistemology of religious truth.  "Epistemology" is the study or theory of the origin, nature, methods and limits of human knowledge.  He felt that all truth depended upon a clear understanding of the limits of human knowledge, and from this consideration he launched his attack upon all the organized religions of the day.

Krathnami began by listing the means by which men and women gain knowledge.  

1.  The five senses, which provide a very limited perception of a very limited part of the universe, which is present knowledge. 

2.  Memory, which allows men and women to preserve their sense experiences into future knowledge.  Memory allowed a traveler who visited a place repeated to improve his knowledge of it by combining his memories of the individual visits.    Memory also provided the means by which a person learns a skill.  However, memory is limited  and often  fails  with  time and under stress.  A person who lives in  the  northern  mountain  might travel to the southeast jungles, where he might see a monkey.  Through his senses he becomes aware of the monkey and through his memory he carries the image back home.  But with time his memory fades, and he imagines the monkey as larger, more spectacular, than it really was.  Krathnami also in passing referred to the failure of the memories of witnesses in court testimony.

3.  Language allowed men and women to share their sense experiences and their memories with one another.  He pointed out that a man in the mountains might make a journey to the forests of  the  southeast and return home with a description of a monkey.  His audience could obtain only a limited understanding of what a monkey looked like and how a monkey acted, because language is a limited tool.

4.  Logic, which he derided as weak, but defended as essential.  Whenever men and women faced a problem, they employed logic to manipulate the knowledge they had obtained through sense experience, memory & language.  But so often common passion overwhelms logic, and so often logic is blunted against the hardness of faulty memory.

5.  Intuition or visionary knowledge.  This he argued provided the purest form of knowledge, but served to provide only glimpses.  "It is the vision of the gods and the edelei, but we have as much of it as a dog has of reason or a crow has of language." 

Many Shufrantei schools of thought derided the reliability of intuition or mystical experience.  The main sects of Shufrantei, for the most part, relied on discipline, rites and theology, while Hiestat relied on the cultivation of extrasensory abilities, including the use of dreaming.  Krathnami had breached the disciplines of his own original faith and learned from Sesnan the mystical practices of the Hiestat. He found them worthy.  He decided that Shufrantei could stand augmentation by the Hiestat practices of ascetic meditation trance and dream interpretation.  Later, when he begin to preach and meet converts, he undoubtedly received the pleasant surprise that many of the smaller, more marginal sects of Shufrantei itself also  relied on the irrational means of knowledge, which meant that the gulf between the body of  Shufrantei and Hiestat was much narrower than his personal experiences had suggested.

Of course the greatest point where Krathnami’s method radically departs from the scientific is his ready admission of "spiritual senses."  The scientific method of course holds that truth only comes from what is demonstrable to the five senses, but that subjective sensibility is untrustworthy.  It assumes that everything is false until proven true by scientific method, yet experiments are set up to disprove hypotheses assumed or proposed to be true.  Indeed such empiricism had been around in Bergonia since Kuan times, and in Kathnami’s time empiricism was a popular antireligious philosophy among the urban literati.  But Krathnami rebuked them and said that people should gather truth by any means of knowledge.

  He proclaimed that if a man or a woman perceives something, it must be assumed true provisionally.  

As an example, if a man claimed to have a vision, the empiricists in the West would dismiss it as presumptively false.   While no pre-columbian Bergonian every conceived of anything as rigorous as the "scientific method" of experimentation, the empiricists among them would have conducted analysis guided by broad guide of "show me," accompanied by critical application of reason and common sense.  They would want to know if others were present at the time and why they did not see the vision also.  An orthodox Shufrantei believer lives in a world presumptively and authoritatively populated by divine beings, and he would have judged the validity of the reported vision accordingly to its content, in order to determine whether it was deity, edelei, or demon.  Most other religions would have focused on the content of the vision as well, so that one religion might acclaim the vision as a holy experience while another would condemn it as demonic.  Krathnami would have assumed that the vision occurred as reported, but he would have been reluctant to assess the content.

The conclusion Krathnami reached from his study of human knowledge was how limited it was, and how great our typical claims of it.   He stressed time and time again what great difficulties people have in knowing things that occur down the street or over the mountain, much less in heaven, in other dimensions or beyond death.

Rejection of Current Religion

Undoubtedly, Krathnami's stress on epistemology began with his reckless dabbling in esoteric and heretical spirituality, in disregard of his Shufrantei vows.  Obviously neither he nor Sesnan began with very strong faith in the orthodoxy of their respective faiths, but both shared a wise skepticism and an eager curiosity that impelled them into forbidden territory together.  However, that dabbling alone would not have necessarily sparked the bold originality in Krathnami's thought. 

When he witnessed the rejection of Sesnan by her hresma colleagues and when he was made to suffer her murder at the hands of Shufrantei lackeys, he discovered a great truth: that the ways of neither Hiestat nor Shufrantei bore very good fruit.   Neither religion imparted much truth if its followers displayed so much ugly pride and sin.  The  painful shock of this revelation undoubtedly caused him to reject the epistemologies of each of the  two religions. 

He took the view that "a tree is known by its fruits," meaning that a doctrine which yielded sinful behavior had little to offer.  He later stressed the absolute necessity  of  correlation between "thought, word and action."  He said, "We form thoughts from our actions.  To presuppose the reverse-- which most of us do-- is "to place the shadow before the body."  In other words, he cared little for intentions. 

From his epistemology he expressed what has sometimes been called in modern times the method of epistemological eclecticism:  

"Whether one takes the wide avenues of logic or a meandering path through the forests of visions and dreams, one can reach the doorstep of heaven.  However, both ways also contain detours of error.  The surest road to heaven is the way that combines all the ways.  Reject no road.  Take them all."

From his condemnation of epistemological exclusiveness, Krathnami went on to attack all the religions of his world.  He postulated his attack on this single argument: since  each of the religions depend on varying ways of perceiving the truth, each has set up a distinct doctrinal model to explain what it perceive.  Since each has employed a myopic, self-limiting method of obtaining knowledge, then their doctrines have to be wanting as well.  Faulty method, faulty conclusion.  In some respects his methods anticipated the scientific method.  He explicitly stated that results mattered, and described the effort to replicate the procedure that produced the designated result. 

He offered a different vision.  He said, "One cannot know of the world solely by looking out windows.  One must walk outside."  As one of his disciples wrote many years later, he "invited all men and women to leave the stuffy temples precincts, where books full of doctrine are stored, walk into the open sunshine, and attain knowledge by all possible means."

Krathnami insisted that people had to employ all the means at their disposal to gain knowledge of the singular universe.  He found no virtue in ignorance, and he saw no reason why, having recognized the vast degree of his own ignorance, humankind should not push against the outward limits of perception and knowledge.  Thus, he would have approved of the modern scientific attitude.

He therefore raised up as one of religion's goal the expansion of human knowledge and consequentially, as he saw it, one's own spirituality would expand.  The way he saw it, the pursuit of knowledge of the universe enabled a person to attain superior spirituality.  He would not have used the English word, "spirituality," since, to a certain degree, "spirituality" connotes an opposition to, or at least a distinction from, "materiality."   

Abandoning the many Gods; embracing the many Gods

The first step in this distillation produced the most radical change-- a conscious step toward monotheism, indeed a step beyond montheism.  When Krathnami begin asking why or whether there is Arkan and Icotesi, or why there was Lacori or Tanteli, or whether any of the Hiestat gods existed, he came up with no answers.   He concluded that the individual gods and goddesses, and the various symbols and rites were not much more than the creations of the human mind and culture.  He could no longer say that there was this god or that god, or one god or many gods, but rather just GODNESS.

Undoubtedly, he concluded, these cultural products sprang up as a result of the limited and hence incorrect perceptions of the true universe by the various religions.  He denounced them as acutle, which translates into English as "affectations," or "masks."  He railed against them.  One disciple quoted him:  "I will smash the sun disks and the cat statues.  They are but empty vessels set up by truth seekers against truth seekers.  They have no worth unless they are  filled with the wine of true faith.  But in this age they all leak and hold nothing but bitter dregs."  (The cat statues were a primary object of Hiestat devotion since among their dieties reigned Seru, a feline deity.)

So he borrowed from Shufrantei theology the word shei, which referred to the original principle.  Arkan and Icotesi emerged from the  differentiation into "this" and "that" from the original undivided unity of shei.  In active Shufrantei theology shei actually held a minor role, after its role in the conception of creation.  In the process of constructing a new pantheistic vocabulary Krathnami seized upon the shei concept and used it to name the Divine beyond the singular and the plural. 

He went on and adopted the term vai to further express the concept of the Divine.  Vai was a term which he used to express the personality of the one god, and he addressed his prayers to Vai.   In time Vai became his name for God.  The word was an archaic Nacateca second person pronoun used to address superiors, which Shufrantei priests had appropriated  to use in addressing the dieties.

In time, Krathnami worked himself around a full logical circle to accepting the worship of  the various Gods.  His process went like this:  Men and women cannot possible comprehend the universal truths, although they have the wherewithal to taste it.  God has permitted us to employ our own imagination as a means of comprehending  him.  Our imagination grasps onto the images of Arkan and  Icotesi, for example, as a way of giving a face to the Divine-- or faces, as it turns out.  Men and women can perfectly  well worship God through the worship of Arkan and Icotesi, but they can  also worship other faces of God as well.  Since God has equipped men and women with imagination in addition to the other actual means of acquiring knowledge, then the products of the imagination are proper means for worshiping God, so long as they are not abused.  Therefore, in the end, Krathnami did not insist on the destruction of the old Gods, but hereafter they were nothing more than masks, and when Christianity arrived on Bergonia's shores five hundred years later, the Mradi absorbed Jesus as just another mask.

The underlying truth to all religion must be the worship of the divinity for its divinity, and because of no particular presumed belief about the divinity's nature or the divinity's relationship with humankind and the world.  Ierecina spoke often of "the sole God,  who reigns beyond the masks."

*  *  *

In one famous incident Shufrantei theologians pressed Krathnami to confirm that Arcan and Icotesi  were the manifestations of the true God, but he refused to concede the point.  His refusal endeared his Hiestat converts to him. 

The Shufrantei theologians asked in amazement, "Do you mean to say that Arcan and Icotesi do not exist?" 

He answered back, "I cannot say that they do not, and you cannot say that they do." 

They retorted that they could, which opened the door to Krathnami to engaged them in a Socratic examination of their means for so knowing.  Finally one of the theologians retorted, "When I pray to Arcan and Icotesi, they answer my prayers.  This is my substantial proof."

Krathnami answered, "Then through Arcan and Icotesi you have found a door to the DivineThat is good.  Keep praying."

"I have found a door to Arcan and Icotesi," came the rejoinder.

"See here, I can introduce you to a man over yonder who prays to the Hiestat god, Shenan.  Do you suggest that Shenan is therefore as real as Arcan?"

The Shufrantei theologian did not reply.

"You two pray to two different ears, but one voice answers you both."

The Principle of Unknowability:

Krathnami, the prophet, taught that humankind utterly lacks the ability to comprehend God, and unable to comprehend the cosmos, and thus will forever remain ignorant of the ultimate reality. "How can a blind man understand the sun?" he said. "It is something we cannot even look at directly."  

Elsewhere he said, "We are like prisoners in a cell with one high, narrow window, casting about idle speculation concerning the nature of the world outside."  

Thus Miradi thus holds that all conjectures about the nature of the divine, the universe, the soul and the afterlife are futile at best, and at worst risk feeding human pride.  Krathnami did not object to metaphysical speculation, but he firmly stated that "belief is a trap," and "attaining vai is does not require belief in the vai."  

Krathnami offered this consolation, however: "God allows us all the knowledge we need for purposes of our own purification."  He used the fact of God's unknowability to quell the sectarian debates of his time and pull all the competitors together.  To them all he said, "You all are wrong, yet you all are correct."

In 1207 Floesice Nite wrote, 

"The cat and the dog know as much as they need to know, in order for them to live their lives, and no more than that.  For them, then, happiness reasonably consists of a full belly and a secure, warm place to sleep.  When men and women have filled their bellies and retired into their comfortable abodes, they still stir with yearning, and they yearn for more than they can ever possibly have.  How can such creatures ever attain happiness?  No wonder they whip up so much trouble for one another.  Men and women seem to know more than they need  to  know about the world, but not enough to feel contentment.  They know enough to ask questions,  but not  enough  to attain the answers.  God, perhaps, is very cruel to people by  making them  so discontent, and also cruel to animals for making them live in the same world as men."

The general temperament that evolved from this world-view placed high value on  open-mindedness, caution in making assertions, curiosity and inquisitiveness, a willingness to speculate coupled with a reluctance to reach conclusions, a tendency to embrace seeming contradictory positions or beliefs, a premium on humility, and an abhorrence of dogmatism.

By the same token, the Mihradist held in contempt the person who remained willfully ignorant and uninterested in the large questions of life.  The primary symptom of such ignorance was atheism and devotion to material pursuits.  The Mihradis identified two undesirable extremes.  One was the gumranvit, the "narrow path," which consisted of cleaving to a single firm doctrine.   The other was the complete lack of interest in anything beyond the selfish concerns of ones own life. 

Krathnami spoke often about the natural "sensitivity" of humans, which to him meant the sensitivity to the needs of other creatures, people and spirits, the general heartfelt awareness of other life in the universe, what some Buddhists call "lovingkindness."  Such sensitivity entailed a sense of caution  in one's  own actions so as not to offend the other life, and the desire to reach out toward them.  The cultivation of this "sensitivity" made it impossible for a person to embrace either extreme.


Krathnami had little use for doctrines, and the faith he left us contained very few of them.  Krathnami undeviatingly viewed religion as a process for gaining knowledge, not as the expression of truth and cosmic reality.  Because of  the severe limitations of humankind's knowledge, nearly all "doctrine" could  be  dismissed as speculation.

For  example, Shufrantei built its cosmology around the idea of the  "hundred thousand mansions of heaven," of which, ultimately, our world is but one.  Each mansion existed as "an island world floating on the eternal sea of dissimilitude."  Krathnami admired the grandeur  of this cosmology, but concluded that no priest could seriously advance such a model if Bergonian priests could only tentatively speculate on the cause of disease or the actual structure of society.  Krathnami observed that every religion identifies an ideal realm or order which it then contrasts  with  the world in which we live, an imperfect world.  This dichotomy  arises  from humankind's imperfect perception and his epistemological errors.  people can see this world of sky, sunlight, love affairs, books, tyrants and sweat, which they fairly well  manipulate  between  the  time  of birth and the time of death.  But human sensitivities force most people  to recognize  the existence of forces and entities beyond what they can actually perceive.   These sensitivities propel the human mind beyond the range of human perceptions.  These sensitivities enable most men and women to become more than what Krathnami called Gavlonre, "people with dead souls"-- that is, atheists who believe only in the existence of this own world.  These sensitivities to the things beyond the range of their perception compel people to pursue truth and, ultimately, God.  Krathnami pointed out that this compulsion produces speculation which in turn generates the layer of myth out of which all religions consist.   Because of the limits on the range of perception, different people contrive different myths and religions. 

But, as he pointed out, all the religions entail certain common elements.   First, he pointed out, all the myths try to identify and describe the divine, the pure and the eternal.  Second, each religion identifies two realms, this imperfection and the "other," more perfect realm which is holy.  The "other" world, if not perfect, is at least a place of greater power than this.  People can actually know little if anything about it, but unhesitatingly builds assumptions and myths about it.

Krathnami was, of course, ignorant of all the Eurasian religions, but the  Christian-Islamic recognition  of  the  heavenly realm as opposed to this gross material  world certainly  fits  his system.   The Platonist dichotomy of the "ideal" and the material realm also fits his system, as does  the Oriental idea of this illusionary world ("Maya") as opposed to the perfect  reality (or nonreality) of Nirvana.  

Shufrantei  had contrived a cosmology which included other worlds of perfect harmony which  floated upon  the  eternal  seas of the Holy Father's and Mother's law.  It also included  this  world,  a place  of chaos and suffering which arises from the rebellion of humans of lesser Gods  against the law.  Krathnami also learned the Hiestat view of the corporal world distinct from the world of “dreams and light” where dwelt the phantom shape of spirit and the divine.  Krathnami also studied the ancient cosmology of the old Kuan Nine-God worship which perceived of a holy world in the sky where the gods lived and where the devout went upon death.  He also had some knowledge of the worship of peripheral Bergonian tribal peoples, such as the Faroi to the south, who resisted the encroachments of Shufrantei so they could  ply  their  fascination  with  the world of "ghosts."

Later scholars comment that Krathnami did not have a correct grasp on the religions of these peoples.  Most tribal cultures simply believed that ghost spirits, demons and other spiritual creatures lived in this world in a rather parallel fashion, and that by either ascetic practices, drugs or Dionysian rites, one could gain access to this plane.

Krathnami concluded that none of the religions correctly stated the true nature of the universe.  Instead, each religion identified "this" and the "other" realm as a necessary consequence of the limits on the perception of humankind.  He concluded that the "other" realm was simply nothing more than the continuation of the universe that lay beyond the range of our senses.

His conclusions gave justification for agnosticism or even atheism.   In fact, as his preaching spread, many Shufrantei believers complained that he had done nothing less than smash the foundations of all faith.  The cynics among the population embraced Krathnami's analysis, saying, "He had exposed all these priests as liars and fools.   He confirms that we should all just live in this life the best we can."

His revolution sprang forth from one unifying principle-- and unification  of  religions was  his fervent goal--- that principle being that there existed no "this" and "other" worlds.  The "other" was merely the part of the single world which lay beyond human perception.  In so saying he pointed out that the overriding truth of religious epistemology was that there exists a vast part of the universe that humankind cannot understand, of which humankind  will  remain ignorant.   

He then turned on the agnostics and atheists with a bitter attack.   He essentially said they were guilt of turning their backs on the portion of the universe beyond perception's range.  Krathnami maintained that people should not ignore that which they did not know or understand.   He reminded people that they all possessed a natural sensitivity to the things of the world that lay beyond their immediate senses.   This reinforced a fundamental attitude of his, that most essential part of his syncretic attitude, which was curiosity and independent thought.  “Never stop asking.”  “You are buffeted by the wind and storm; do you not wonder from whence they come?”   He demonstrated that knowledge came from indirect  sources,  which included  intuitive and visionary means.  These means certainly could had no less validity than the physical senses.  Krathnami devoted much of his more technical teaching to this specific point. 


The temple sanctuary where the service is held is large and plain, sometimes as spare as a Shaker meeting hall. But usually the front wall bore a mural, mosaic or fresco depicting the holy couple, Arkan and Icotesi, or some other mythical scene.  Lacori was always popular.  In the Miradi era there are still depictions of Arkan and Icotesi, but also large "sun disks" are hung in the front. The sun disks became the symbol of Miradi as it supplanted Shufrantei. There is a custom that no picture of a saint or prophet can appear in the front of the sanctuary, so small pictures of Krathnami and other saints often are hung on the side walls.  The sanctuary is lit with many candles; there is usually one volunteer whose sole duty during the service is to watch and tend to the candles.  The service features a lot of low, slow chanting, rising and falling, producing a mood somewhat similar to the Eastern Orthodox mass.

Miradi largely inherited from Shufrantei, its predecessor religion, a cylindrical system of rituals and ceremonies, as well as a mythology, and all the Miradi ceremonies follow the Shufrantei antecedents.  Shufrantei ritual centered around the rite of purification, which, according to orthodox doctrine, resulted in the elimination of soul-killing pollution.  

Krathnami never preached much about ritual and did not at first ordain any specific rites for his disciples, but the disciples apparently pressed him, until he replied by stating that rities had no efficacious value.   He  compared the rite of purification to magic, and referred to the basest from of magic, the ritual curse in which a person wrote a curse against an enemy on a piece of paper and then burnt it in a flame while he chanted a specific supplicatory chant to a demon to act upon the curse. This kind of curse was called the arafei, something the Shufrantei priests heavily condemned as superstition.  Krathnami pointed out that the rite of purification pretended expected a spiritual change to result from a prescribed set of actions and words, just as the arafei did.  He pointed out that some orthodox Shufrantei maintained that the purification rite worked, regardless of the specific state of mind of the believer.  He said this was wrong.   He claimed that a truly contrite heart, motivated by devotion to God, would purify itself. 

His disciples had grown used to his radical disregard for conventions.  Some of them were starting to show their own open disdain for all customs and practices, but a more moderate group grew anxious, and fretted among themselves.  They were good disciples and so took their discomfort directly to him.  They asked him, "Should we not employ any rites at all?  If not, what do we need temples and priests for?"  Krathnami answered back that temples were places of prayer and that priests and priestess were people who led people in prayer and helped them in their quests for holiness. 

In his later years Krathnami seemed to make a concession when he wrote in one of  his few letters that rituals had great usefulness in focusing the human mind.  In his examination of epistemology, he came to consider how people think.  He considered how the human mind flickered and darted around, responding to distraction after distraction.  He understood how difficult it was for the average person to concentrate on God, prayer and holiness.  He understood how even priests needed the assistance of things like chanted memorized prayers.   He finally decided that rites served several salutary functions, such as focusing thought, gathering believers together, and bonding them collectively with the priests and with the mystery of God. 

He ended up endorsing the continued use of the rite of purification, but only as a useful method of (a) joining the religious collective, (b) providing a useful occasion for prayer, and (c) give a metaphorical drama to the mystery.   In other words, he stripped away all pretense of the rite’s literal effect, and stated that a pure heart can use the rite to achieve with ease what the pure heart could achieve on its own. 

Many of his disiples greeted his endorsement of the purification rite with delight, for they knew that the rite of purification would provide a significant bridge between the Shufrantei  religion and their own new movement.  Thus, performance of the rite of purification every sixth day continued in the Miradi practice.


No universal devil, no Satan, ever inhabited the Bergonian universe. The only evil in the Bergonian universe resides within the human heart, the product of the inherently defective nature of humans.  Thus evil is a uniquely human quality.  This shows in the myths-- where monsters, demons and tlucas (ghouls who eat human flesh) arise from the most evil humans.  Tanteli is the closest thing to a Satan in Bergonian religion, but his evil is understood to be a metaphor for human evil, and his evil was quite exceptional among the Gods. 

The essence of evil in the Bergonian imagination was distinctly twofold.  One was the evil of hatred and rage, deliberate cruelty, of which Tanteli was guilty.  More complicated to Westerners is the evil of contempt and objectification that allows exploitation.  The villain here acts with serene indifference to the object of his cruelty-- like a child picking wings off a butterfly, like planning the rations for slaves, like defrauding widows of their savings, like firing a missile remotely. One here is said to "dine" on their victims.  Evildoers are often portrayed as cannibals, eating their victims.   

Bergonians sometimes react angrily when Europeans use animals to describe human evil-- "He acts like an animal,"  "What beastly behavior."   Humankind has a monopoly on evil.  But (according to several native theories of evolutionary psychology) the seeds of the two varieties of evil lay in animal behavior-- the contest for territory between members of the same species spawned the evil of hatred and rage, and the hunting of prey spawned the evil of objectification.  Both forms in incipient human life employed weapons-- clubs, arrows, spears, knives.  On one side emerged the warrior/feuder/criminal and on the other the hunter/provider/exploiter.



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Miradi Shufrantei Hiestat Ancient Egyptian Judaism






Classicism Mesoamerica
Immanent or transcendent deity? immanent  both immanent  transcendent transcendent transcendent immanent transcendent transcendent
Monism, duality, or pluralism? monism duality pluralism pluralism monism duality monism duality pluralism
the world one of many divine manifestations ordered change fragmented, open, empty under Gd's direct control impure, profane illusory solid, ultimate unstable, transient, dependant on sacrifice
Man's Duty practice ritual ritual, magic ritual, magic obedience under the covenant faith practice ritual ritual/sacrifice
Man's pay-off vs. punishment who knows? so what? afterlife vs. no afterlife ghosts on earth afterlife vs.hell communal mandate paradise vs. hell

nirvana vs.


favor continuation of the world vs. destruction
Sentience sentient materialist sentient sentient? materialist materialist sentient materialist ?