Are All Religions One?
There is only One Truth
behind all religions, whether the so-called world religions or
primitive beliefs. The different arts and sciences also represent
various attempts, though they may be indirect, to connect with the
One Reality. Recognizing such a Universal Truth, we should strive to
develop a universal religion which includes not only what is good in
religion, but what is good in art and science, and in all human
endeavors to know Reality. All ways of connecting with Truth -
whether formulated as religions or not - are like various rivers
that flow to the ocean of Truth. They all have a common goal, though
not each singly can reach it.
Yet to reach that Truth we
must follow a path that leads to Self-realization. Few religious
teachings regard Self-realization as the goal of life. Therefore
they cannot take us all the way to it, though they may be of
preliminary benefit. And religion is sometimes a mask for adharmic
activities, for attitudes that do not enlarge our minds and hearts
but narrow them down to some dogma or opinion. Such religion cannot
take us even part of the way to Truth, which is universal.
Sanatana Dharma is not meant
as another one of these streams but as an attempt to portray the
reality of the ocean, which accepts all streams without being
limited to any of them. For this reason all the spiritual practices
that can be found in other religions - like prayer, ritual, mantra
and meditation whether devotional or knowledge-oriented - exist
within the greater Hindu tradition.