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Syndicated Columns

Great minds on religion

Posted March 17, 2007

Q. I am concerned that religion causes separation, extremist thinking and is the source of destruction. How can we accept our diversity and recognize that we are all part of humanity? -- T.W., West Palm Beach

A. This question has been explored for centuries. We must each find within ourselves the capacity to embrace diversity and recognize our unity.

I have chosen to answer this question through the wisdom of others.

Mark Twain: "Man is the religious animal. He is the only animal that loves his neighbor as himself and cuts his throat, if his theology isn't straight. He has made a graveyard of the globe in trying his honest best to smooth his brother's path to happiness and heaven."

Ralph Waldo Emerson: "In the matter of religion, people eagerly fasten their eyes on the difference between their own creed and yours; whilst the charm of the study is in finding the agreements and identities in all the religions of humanity."

Thomas Erskine: "In the New Testament, religion is grace and ethics is gratitude."

Adyashanti: "It is good to remember that the goal of Buddhism is to create Buddhas, not Buddhists, as the goal of Christianity is to create Christs, not Christians."

Deepak Chopra: "We cannot have peace if we are not at peace with ourselves. If you are not at peace with your family, it is impossible to have world peace. We have to have a critical mass of peaceful people in the world before we can have peace."

Mahatma Gandhi: "Be the change you wish to see in the world."

May we all become models for a moral, ethical and peaceful world.

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