Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Where Different Religions Intersect

Imagine for a moment there are four people who live in the Northeast part of this country, and after a great deal of deliberation, they decide to go to the Southwest. One chooses to drive across the southern part of the country. Another person chooses to board a ship and sail around the country, and yet another person chooses to fly. At the same time, each person vehemently claims the only way to make the journey is by the method they have chosen. It isn’t long before conflict erupts between the four people. Their focus goes from the great pleasure they will experience when reaching their destination to trying to prove they are right and the others are wrong. Is there unity between the four people? Yes, they all have the same desire and same destination in mind. However, the unity won’t be realized until they arrive at the common destination.

The major religions of the world are similar to the four travelers. Each religion believes in one Power, one Presence (some call it God) and has set forth a “spiritual path” to assist people in arriving at a destination where they have a sense of oneness with all things and all people. Yet, at the same time, many religions claim to have the only way for making that journey. This claim is sometimes ego-driven by various religious leaders, but also divisive and laden with prejudices, discriminations, false dogmatic assertions and what my Norwegian ancestors would call “Bunk”. Doesn’t it seem laughable that some would have us believe their way is THE way and all the good offered by other religions should be considered wrong? I am sure Jesus, Abraham, Lao Tsu, Buddha, Mohammed, Zoroaster, Gandhi and other great spiritual masters knew the Truth of the destination, whatever their journey was to get there.