THE UNIVERSAL PRIESTHOOD OF THE FAITHFUL AND THE PRIESTHOOD OF THE INITIATESWith the descent of the Savior into the world, a new force has been infused into every believer, the life of the grace, principle of eternal life, interrupted when the first stock of the humanity alienated itself from God. Already at the beginning, when the metaphysical world was created, we were ordained priests potentially, because the Adam Kadmon was made the first priest of a cosmic liturgy; but the missing continuity of union of the progenitor with the Intelligence of God set the conditions for a long wait before the restoration could be re-established. During this long wait, God has given in progressive revelation. As Saint Paul writes to the Hebrews (I,1): “After God had in ancient times, in several occasions and in various manners, spoken to our fathers through the prophets, lastly in our days he has spoken to us through the mouth of his Son ….”. So, when the opportune moment came, the Avatar Jesus instituted the Ecclesia by the will of the Father and the cooperation of the Holy Spirit. In conformity with the Christian Initiation of this Ecclesia, all the baptized, confirmed and communicants are elected priests for the eternity of a ‘Royal Priesthood‘. In the Bible, next to the functional priesthood, namely the caste of the Levite clergy, there is mention of a universal priesthood of the people of God. The Lord Jehovah, after the gift of the Torah to Moses, declared: “You shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation” (Exodus XIX, 6). In the New Testament, it is Saint Peter who confirms what God had revealed to Moses: “You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood”. The first Bishop twice reminds the persecuted neophytes of their priesthood, in his first epistle, with the following expressions: “Set yourselves close to Him (the Christ), the living stone; you also as living stones are built on Him (to be) a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices made acceptable to God by the intermediation of Jesus Christ . . . But you (who believe) are a chosen lineage, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people set apart for God” (1 Peter, II, 4-5, 9). Passages similar to the letter of St. Peter are found in Isaiah. LXI, 6; LXII,12. John the Evangelist confirms what St. Peter says: “To him that loves us and acquitted us from our sins in his own blood, and has made us a kingdom, priests for God his father, to him be glory and dominion in the centuries” (Apocalypse. I, 5-6). Saint John will confirm three more times the priesthood of all the faithful (Apoc. V, 10; XX, 6; XXII, 5). Obviously, the baptized and faithful of both the sexes. If a priesthood has been established with the imposition of the hands and the power to transmit the sacred Order to other Christians, it is still true that through the baptism, the faith and the works, we are priests for eternity and every virtuous person can validly administer all the Sacraments. Otherwise, for what reason should Moses, Isaiah, Peter and John, who revealed the word of God, have said that we are a “chosen line, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people of God”? At the beginning of the Christianity, there appeared a category of people with the task of performing the liturgical functions (to baptize, to consecrate the Eucharist, to administer it, etc.): these constituted and continued to be (by succession) the clergy. But such a distinction between clergy and laity was founded solely and uniquely on practical necessities of good order. All the faithful considered themselves priests, and when it was necessary they could preach, baptize, celebrate the Eucharist. Such traditional usage and conviction was confirmed by the Apostles, and by that famous and significant passage of Matthew (XVIII, 18-20), which says: “In truth I tell you: whatever you will bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you will loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. In truth I also tell you: if two of you on earth will agree to ask anything at all, it will be granted to them by my Father which is in the heavens. For where two or three are met together in my name, there I am in the midst of them”. Only in the IV century was the dreadful idea born that the priesthood was a privilege, and an inalienable and reserved power only for the priests ordained for the clergy. Saint Augustine gave an indelible basis to the doctrine which upholds the non-priesthood of the faithful. The Holy Scriptures, however, cannot be changed, and we remain true to them, because Peter and John knew the will of the Messiah better than those who came after. From these considerations and from many others, not said for reasons of space, we can draw the conclusion that in virtue of the “priesthood of the faithful” it is possible and legitimate to develop a ‘priesthood of the initiates’, that is an esoteric priesthood represented by an esoteric Ecclesia. The idea and the epithet of ‘lay people’, that is profane, does not find a place either in the Bible or in the New Testament, but makes way when the Era of the Emperor Constantine closes the fecund period of the exoteric and esoteric Christianity, that is, integral; the people of the ‘Royal Priesthood’ became estranged from their mission, refusing the prophetic dignity and the marvelous gifts of the Holy Spirit. Despite this grave deviation, the Tradition of the Fathers and Ecclesiastical writers of the archaic Church remains unchanged. The layman is not considered as such, but he is sealed in all his being with the gifts of the sanctifying Spirit, is a charismatic being in the total sense. For the Christ, the faithful represent an ecclesial place, which is at one time World and Church. The universal priesthood of the faithful has power over the cosmic liturgy, over the cosmic sacredness, through the mere presence of its sanctified beings, bearers of the Trinity. Christ has not entrusted to only a part of the Christianity the carrying out of the priestly and prophetic mission, but said to all, men and women: “Go, therefore, and teach all the peoples”. In conclusion, each of us has been confirmed an ‘apostolic person’. The universal priesthood of the faithful, instituted by Jesus according to the order of Melchizedek, is for certain party to the three powers: to govern, to teach, to sanctify. A passive people is not coherent with the patristic ecclesiology and with the will of Christ, true historical Man and true God. Let us reclaim, therefore, our priestly dignity. The sleep of the laymen has ended. Let us open ourselves to the Holy Spirit and let us enter into the world. Let us now speak a little about the ‘priesthood of the initiates’, even if the preceding booklets, and the present one, have already made it clear. The Priesthood of the Initiates is the logical development of the “universal priesthood of the faithful”, born from the faithful in the Christ who have understood what the Messiah meant under the veil of those sealed expressions: “He who has ears, understand…! Many things I could say to you, but you cannot understand them…”. In the priesthood of the Initiates, there find their place those Christians who know more, and can face the experiences of the great Mysteries, from the memory of the past lives(1) to the out-of-body experience in order to travel through the supersensible worlds(2) , from the reading of the akashic archives to the ultraphanics. If it is true, most true, that without the Charity and the Humility one does not enter into the Kingdom of the Heavens; if it is true and most true, that without the Love towards God and his Messiah we cannot enter into the Kingdom of God, it is also true that without the conquest with the initiatic experiences, suggested by the Archeosophical ascesis, one remains behind the walls of the Heavenly Jerusalem. He who has ears, understand! We have already said more than enough. (1) T. PALAMIDESSI- THE MEMORY OF THE PAST LIVES- Booklet 5. (2) T. PALAMIDESSI- HOW TO HAVE AN OUT-OF-BODY EXPERIENCE AND TRAVEL IN THE SUPERSENSIBLE WORLDS- Booklet 6.
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