Differences in Religion

07/13/2010 § Leave a comment


“Science tends more and more to reveal to us the unity that underlies the diversity of nature.  We must have diversity in our practical lives; we must seize Nature by many handles.  But our intellectual lives demand unity, demand simplicity amid all this complexity.  Our religious lives demand the same.  Amid all the diversity of creeds and sects we are coming more and more to see that religion is one, that verbal differences and ceremonies are unimportant, and that the fundamental agreements are alone significant.
Religion as a key or passport to some other world has had its day; as a mere set of statements or dogmas about the Infinite mystery it has had its day.  Science makes us more and more at home in this world, and is coming more and more, to the intuitional mind, to have a religious value.  Science kills credulity and superstition but to the well-balanced mind it enhances the feeling of wonder, of veneration, and of kinship which we feel in the presence of the marvelous universe.  It quiets our fears and apprehensions, it pours oil upon the troubled waters of our lives, and reconciles us to the world as it is.”
~ John Burroughs (Accepting the Universe)

“Religion is not an end in itself. One’s union with God is the ultimate goal. There are so many religions because immature people tend to emphasize trivial differences instead of important likenesses. Differences between faiths lie in creeds and rituals rather than religious principles. ” (Peace Pilgrim: Her Life and Work in Her Own Words‎ – Page 85 by Peace Pilgrim )

“God can be realized through all paths. All religions
are true. The important thing is to reach the roof. You can reach it by
stone stairs or by wooden stairs or by bamboo steps or by a rope. You
can also climb up by a bamboo pole.“
(The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna, tr., Swami Nikhilananda , P.111)

“Some people indulge in quarrels, saying, `One cannot attain anything
unless one worships our Krishna,’ or, `Nothing can be gained without
the worship of Kali, our Divine Mother,’ or, `One cannot be saved
without accepting the Christian religion.’ This is pure dogmatism. The
dogmatist says, `My religion alone is true, and the religions of others
are false.’ This is a bad attitude. God can be reached by different
paths.” (ibid., P.191 )

“God has made different religions and creeds to suit different aspirants.”
(ibid. P. 486)

“It is my personal belief, after thirty-five years’ experience of it…
that the spirit of Christianity and of our ancient religion is
essentially the same.”
(The Essential Charles Eastman (Ohiyesa): Light on the Indian world‎ – Page xiii
by Charles Alexander Eastman, Michael Oren Fitzgerald)

“There should be understanding among religions, not conflict. Understanding, acceptance, and cooperation instead of competition will bring harmony
and joy. The world is very small. Instead of creating division, we
should seek amity and unity. Flowers of many different colors make a
beautiful garland. Many varieties of fruit of various tastes and
flavors make a beautiful dessert. Multiplicity is the beauty in God’s
creation, and it gives us the  opportunity to enjoy unity in all

‘Let us be the instruments of God, creating unity and amity everywhere, making this world a better place to live, a better place to serve and realize the presence of God.” ~Swami Prajnananda Kriya Yoga Institute, Vol. 7, Issue 1, P. 2

“I am the thread that runs through all these pearls, and each pearl is a religion or even a sect thereof. Such are the different pearls, and God is the thread that runs through all of them; most people, however, are entirely unconscious of it.” – Swami Vivekananda

“Truth is one; only It is called by different names. All people are
seeking the same Truth; the variance is due to climate, temperament,
and name. A lake has many ghats. From one ghat the Hindus take water in
jars and call it ‘jal’. From another ghat the Mussalmāns take water in
leather bags and call it ‘pāni’. From a third the Christians take the
same thing and call it ‘water’. Suppose someone says that the thing is
not ‘jal’ but ‘pāni’, or that it is not ‘pāni’ but ‘water’, or that it
is not ‘water’ but ‘jal’, It would indeed be ridiculous. But this very
thing is at the root of the friction among sects, their
misunderstandings and quarrels. This is why people injure and kill one
another, and shed blood, in the name of religion. But this is not good.
Everyone is going toward God. They will all realize Him if they have
sincerity and longing of heart.” – Ramakrishna Paramhansa

“The One is present in each sect, even though in some cases there appears to be conflict among them, due to the limitations of the ego. He, who
follows one particular creed or sect, will have to proceed right up to
the point where he knows all that it stands for in its entirety. When
advancing along one line, in other words, when adhering to one
particular religion, faith or creed-which you conceive as distinct and
as conflicting with all the others – you will, first of all, have to
realize the perfection to which its Founder points and then, what is
beyond, will of itself become revealed to you. What has just been
explained is applicable in the case of each of the various sects; yet
it is of course true that, if one remains satisfied with whatever can
be achieved by following one line, the Goal of human life has not been
attained. What is required is a Realization that will uproot conflict
and divergence of opinion, which is complete and free from inherent
antagonism.” Anandamayee Ma

“In a potter’s shop there are vessels of different shapes and forms–pots, jars, dishes, plates, &c.–but all are made of one clay. So God is
one, but is worshipped in different ages and times under different
names and aspects.” – Ramakrishna Paramhansa

“A man can reach the roof of a house by stone stairs or a ladder or a rope-ladder or a rope or even by a bamboo pole. But he cannot reach the
roof if he sets foot now on one and now on another. He should firmly
follow one path. Likewise, in order to realize God a man must follow
one path with all his strength. But you must regard other views as so
many paths leading to God. You should not feel that your path is the
only right path and that other paths are wrong. You mustn’t bear malice
toward others.” – Ramakrishna Paramhansa

“When people talk about the vision of the Self ( Atma Darshan) and Self-Realization, it is only from hearsay; still it is necessary to
find a way in order to gain first-hand experience of this state. Thus,
what we have to do is to take any path that will lead us to it.” – Anandamayee Ma

“As with one gold various ornaments are made, having different forms and names, so one God is worshipped in different countries and ages, and has different forms and names. Though He may be worshipped variously, some loving to call him Father, others Mother, etc., yet it is one God that is being worshipped in all these various relations and modes.” Ramakrishna Paramhansa

” More are the names of God
and infinite are the forms
through which He may be approached.
In whatever name and form
you worship Him, through them
you will realise Him.”
Ramakrishna Paramhansa

“Underneath the inharmonious and trivial particulars, is a musical perfection, the Ideal journeying always with us, the heaven without rent or seam.”~ Ralph Waldo Emerson (Experience)

“Tolerance is a good cornerstone on which to build human relationships. Man, since the dawn of the species, has taken great consolation and joy in his religions. In this sea of contention, one bright principle has emerged: the right to believe as one chooses.  “Faith” and “belief” do not necessarily surrender to logic: they cannot even be declared to be illogical.  They can be things quite apart. Any advice one might give another on this subject is safest when it simply asserts the right to believe as one chooses.  One is at liberty to hold up his own beliefs for acceptance.  One is at risk when he seeks to assault the beliefs of others, much more so when he attacks and seeks to harm them because of their religious convictions. ” ~L.Ron Hubbard – The Way To Happiness, Chapter 18 Respect the Religious Beliefs of Others; Scientology

All religions, all this singing, one song What is praised is one, so the praise is one too, many jugs being poured into a huge basin.  All religions, all this singing, one song. The differences are just illusion and vanity.  Sunlight looks slightly different on this wall than it does on that wall and a lot different on this other one, but it is still one light.  We have borrowed these clothes, these time-and-space personalities, from a light, and when we praise, we pour them back in. Mevlana Jelaluddin Rumi quoted in Ethics and Lao-Tzu By Edward Mendelowitz


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