religion and trade

Is there any inconsistency in the fact that religions depended upon two very worldly phenomena, commercial activity and political support, in order to flourish and spread?

Buddhist teaching originally began as a daily discipline based on a particular philosophical view of reality. Did the Mahayana tradition, with its focus on the worship of relics and praying to enlightened beings for salvation, represent a watering-down of the original teaching, or an opening up of it to a broader audience? Should a tradition claiming to be the Truth remain unaltered through time, or should it adapt to changing contexts and circumstances?

The readings need password, i’ll attatch the link and the login information. 

The name of the book is “The Silk Road” by Xinru Liu, pp.15-18 & pp.100-119