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Understanding Scriptures

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 Blooming Stars

Status of the World –3

            The preamble to the constitution of the United Nations says that all human beings are created equal. All come into this world naked without anything, and all are legitimate. All leave this world naked without anything. Birth and death are the greatest levelers or equalizers. No one is or should be entitled to any privilege or honor or position on the basis of his or her birth. No one is nobler solely due to one’s birth. All are equal as human beings irrespective of their gender, color, creed, nationality, ethnic origin. Nobody has any choice in these matters. These are givens when a person is conceived. Nobody can be responsible for things he/she has not chosen. Therefore the idea of equality should be in every cell and fiber of every human being. We do not do any service to anyone if we do not consider our own and others’ humanity as sacred.

            Equality means that we are equal in being human. We are equal in our uniqueness. We are equal whether we are men or women. We are equal whether we are Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists or of any other religion. I do not believe in any so-called chosen people, race, or caste. I have no use for a God who discriminates, who gives preferential treatment to some. We are all equal before God’s sight. God’s ways are inscrutable, and I would like to leave it at that. I do not want to make hair-splitting theological distinctions about God that at best can only be sharing of my understanding (knowledge or ignorance, depending on perspective) of God, therefore limited, partial, and certainly coming from my faith or belief system. We are all so heavily programmed in our life that we often end up believing what we are brought up in.

            If I knew why God did what He/She did I would be God myself. And I am not. Nobody is. Anything that we say about God is anthropomorphic, through and through human. We may be divinely inspired. I believe scriptures are inspired and sacred. I am very much aware that these are very controversial topics. But I do not think I would be burned at the stakes for saying these things though fundamentalism, fanaticism, and intolerance in religions are raising their ugly heads and trying to turn the clock back, and return humanity to the days of gross religious terrorism or persecutions. After studying scriptures, religions, and spirituality for most of my life I prefer and value some scriptures more than others. That is why it is very important that every human of age study scriptures and traditions of other religions and make their own choices. That is also the reason that I advocate spirituality beyond religions or a higher consciousness that can unite all of us into the oneness of humanity before we destroy one another.

            I believe that every human being is created in the image of God, and that is plenty enough for me to respect and revere every human being. I believe that we have glimpses of God in so many different ways in our everyday life. Gandhiji once said that God comes to the hungry in the form of bread. God comes in so many different forms: in freedom, love, truth, beauty, justice, fairness, peace, tolerance, smiles, spectacular scenes, physical and material glory… Here it is good to remember St. Paul, a man of great faith, about two thousand years ago, said: “For now (in our earthly pilgrimage) we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face” (1Corinthians 12:13). We are all equal before God. The man in tattered clothes in the street begging for food might be more precious than you or I before God. (To be contd.)


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