Are all Religions essentially the same at their roots?

Considering myself to be somewhat informed on the beliefs of many relgions, in a broad sense, I cannot help but come to the conclusion that they are indeed essentially the same in that the roots of the belief structure mainly including idea’s of morals and respectfull living/behaviour, can be interpreted as the same. Indeed the only differences I can notice are that the ‘interpretation’ of these core beliefs and other more insignificant details, is where religions seem to dissagree and consequently differ. In saying this, it comes as no surprise that society in a general sense, concerning laws and rules and even tribal customs, whether you be religious, athiest, tribal or scientific, adhere to these same principles. These principles are infact human tendencies/instincts that naturally tell us what is right or wrong in order for our species to effectively survive in a competitive environment such as our earth where in the past, pre-intellectual advancement, things were I imagine a lot more difficult to survive. The funny thing is that if you read over this post once more, you may begin to notice that religion sounds more like a PR campaign to sell the best product, which essentially offer the same beliefs, but are competing for believers in what is now a more complicated intellectual environment, using different marketing to appeal to their target markets and potential believers. Sorry for the long post but I invite critics and thinkers alike to comment on my thoughts. PEACE.

Yes, many religions are similar; i think we all have religious intuitiuon. But the real question is how do you respond to the reality of God; is there any way to have a personal relationship with Him. In your estimation, are there any religions but Christianity which claim to accomplish this?

Yes, almost all religions share a commonality in issues of pragmatic ‘how shall we live?’. The divergence is usually in the metaphysical arena. The nature of God, The proper God/man relationship, the nature of an afterlife, and on and on…

It is curious that there is broad agreement among religions in how we should deal with our physical world, and at the same time, deep division in explanations of the metaphysical.

As usual, the devil is in the details. It is sad to note that God has sponsored and overseen so much human misery and death through religion. The ability to wreak havoc amongst ourselves is probably the element most shared by religions.

JT

Atheism, JT, since it’s philosophical advent in the 1800’s, has had as bad or even worse record in producing human misery than any religion – at least among Marxists and Fascists. Get real.

Cordially,
Un Chevalier Mal Fet

From a purely objective point of view, it seems to me that all religions seem to be the same except for that of Christianity, which preaches that we ARE NOT saved by works. Whereas the majority of other religions I have studies seem to depend on how one lives. I could be wrong though, if you know of such a religion, i’d love to hear about it.

.:TenSioN:.

Well, (since you’re talking about Christianity) you could see belief as a work too – This is the work of God “to believe in the one whom He has sent,” says the New Testament. And on the other side, doesn’t a disciple of any religion need to put faith in their prophet’s holiness and right judgement before following their ethics and discipline?

On the contrary, works follow faith, because “Faith without deeds is dead faith” says James in the New Testament. Your works do define your faith, but it is the walking daily with Christ that is faith, and it’s not a work, but what precedes the works.

By “works”, i’m assuming you mean “good things that we do that get us closer (or farther) to Heaven.”

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God–not by works, so that no one can boast.”

Ephesians 2: 8-9

my real name,

Why would you stop at 1800? I wasn’t suggesting that man killing man was a sport reserved only for the religious. That’s been going on since the beginning. My observation was that most of this behavior (not all) was justified by “God is on our side”. And that is true even among the marxists and facists.

JT

my real name writes:

Yes, one can even say that atheism (via communism) has killed people of opposing “faiths” just as in the crusades. Witness the Chinese in Tibet. Joseph Campbell once related the human rights atrocities that occurred there, such as Buddhist monks being buried up to their neck and urinated on. Many monks were killed as well. The good news is that less than 1% of the people in prison are atheists and 93% of scientists are atheists. I don’t think you can blame religion and ideologies whether theist or not for the human rights violations that occur throughout the World, ultimately people are responsible for their own actions. It is interesting though that most of the conflicts are fought along religious lines (witness the gaza strip and Cashmere).

GOD, is on no one’s side. Past (and present) religious and/or political crusades which USE the will of God or ‘greater good’ as an EXCUSE for perfoming their misdeeds is a bit like a child forging their parents signiture on a permission slip which claims that they can beat up/bully any one who does not agree to play with them in the playground. Their parents would never endorse such a ludicrous idea because they know different children like to play different games. But then who knows. Maybe IT is a vengeful GOD… NOT.
:confused: JAH

I think that Aldous Huxley in his book The Perennial Philosophy addresses the question of all religions being one underneath.