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Hinduism : The Eternal Tradition Sanatana Dharma
Index

Preface 

Perennial Wisdom 

Sanatana Dharma

Religion And Spirituality...

Religion Or Dharma

The Eternal View Of Hinduism

Idolatary And Dogmatism

Religion And Spirituality..

Religious And Spiritual Practices

Civilization And Social Issues

Hinduism And Sanatana Dharma

Hinduism And Other Religions

Appendices

       

Major Sections
Books By David Frawley
Arjuna

Awaken Bharata

From The River Of Heaven How I Became A Hindu
The Myth Of Aryan Invasion Of India

Hinduism : The Eternal Tradition, Sanatana Dharma

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SANATANA DHARMA AND THE MODERN WORLD

 What is the Purpose of Religion?

Religion, as it occurs in the world, contains two aspects. First, within all religions can be found certain moral principles which reflect a greater universal ethics. Religion tells us not to be selfish, not to harm others, not to lie, steal, or cheat, to do good, to be helpful, compassionate and thoughtful. These are universal human values that all societies require to some degree in order to function at all. While the details of such principles vary in different religions, all religions contain them to some degree.

Second, religions contain an aspect of dogma. They brand certain actions wrong not because they violate any universal ethic but because they go against a particular belief which is limited to one group only. For example, if a religion tells us that it is a sin not to go to church on a particular day, that it is wrong to call upon God by another name than the one sanctioned by the religion, or that it is heretical to think that God is not limited to a particular prophet or incarnation, these are not statements of universal Truth but the tyranny of a belief.

They are dogmas which are not universally true but reflect only the opinion of a particular group. These dogmas end up promoting actions that violate universal ethics, causing us to mistrust and mistreat those who do not subscribe to them, dividing humanity into the godly believers and the ungodly or demonic non-believers who must be converted or conquered.

The first aspect of religion, universal ethics, is preliminary to the spiritual path and is, in fact, the very the foundation for it. The second side, theological dogma, is harmful to the spiritual path, and contradicts the first side of religion. It is spiritually unethical to insist that one is wrong or sins by questioning religious dogma, or that by not limiting oneself to the prescriptions of a particular religious belief one has done an act of the same negative nature as harming another person.

Organized religion combines the nectar of universal ethics with the poison of exclusive belief. Unless we can sift the nectar from the poison such religion will harm our spiritual potential. Following universal ethics completely, like the principles of truthfulness and non-violence, we can take what is good in religion and dispense with what is not.

 

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About Sanatana Dharma And The Modern World
Should We Follow Any Religion at..? Pg1
Should We Follow Any Religion at..? Pg2
 What is the Purpose of Religion?
What is the Difference Between Religion...?
Why Tradition?
Are All Religions One?
Aren't All Religions the Same?
Aren't All Religions Merely Alternative.. ?
Isn't It Wrong for Religious People to. ?
Should We Not Combine All...?
Can I be a Follower of All Spiritual Paths?
What Do All Hindus Believe?
Isn't the Universal Tradition More Than..?
Should Not Westerners Follow ..?
Don't Westerners Require a Scientific..?
What is the Ancient Western Vedic... ?
Don't We Need Practices Designed..?
What is the Importance of a... ?
Can I Keep My Existing Religious... ?
Is Yoga Hindu?
Is not Yoga Enough, Why Should We... ?
Is Hinduism of Value for Westerners?
Aren't There Many Things Wrong With.. ?
Should One Formally Become a Hindu?
Won't A Person Lose their Western ....?
How Can We Integrate East and West?
Are Gurus Necessary?
Does One Require a Living Guru?
Should One Follow a Traditional Guru?
Can One Change Gurus?
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