Boniface VIII defined that “outside of [the church] there is neither salvation nor the remission of sins”. Could it be that, after the schism, its monastic adherents being deprived of habitual grace, they developed a pseudo-nepsis as a technique rather than a spiritual exercise which opens the soul not to the passive purgation of the senses but to the influence of separated substances opposed to God? This idea seems to be anticipated by Maritain in The Degrees of Knowledge:

What metaphysician, not to speak of the ancient Brahmins, has felt more keenly than Plotinus this burning desire for the supreme unity? But the ecstasy of Plotinus is not this supreme act, rather is it the vanishing point of metaphysics, and metaphysics alone does not suffice to procure it. The good fortune which Plotinus knew four times during the six years that Porphyry lived with him suggests a brief contact with an intellectual light in its nature of greater force, the spasm of a human mind in contact with a pure spirit. If we believe Porphyry when he says that his master was born the thirteenth year of the reign of Severus, that he heard Ammonius at Alexandria, that he came to Rome when he was forty, that he died in the Campagna, and when he describes to us his state of health and way of life, his kindness to the orphans committed to his care, his way of teaching, of composing, of pronouncing Greek, his handwriting, etc., why do we not believe him when he says that the philosopher was inspired by a daemon who lived with him, and which showed itself, in a sensible form, at his death? ‘At that moment a serpent passed under the bed in which he was lying and glided into a hole in the wall; and Plotinus gave up his soul in death.’ What would be astonishing would be if the metaphysical eras, there where Christ does not dwell, did not call forth some form of collusion with superhuman intellectual natures, rectores hujus mundi.