Are All Religions Equal?


There are some religions out there which are very violent. We can talk about unity of all religions all day but there is this one religion that clearly states that all other religions must be eliminated. Even a blind man can see the terrible things happening in the middle east. If we go out in the sun and close our eyes, day won’t become night. What is going on in this world? Why is a evil ideology spreading all over the world? Can you help me find the answers? I am terrified about the future.

—Siddharth Kumar, India


Dear Friend,

Paramhansa Yogananda, though a strong advocate for respect and dialogue among all religions, admitted that not all are equal in terms of attunement and harmony with the highest teachings of “moksha” (communion with and liberation into God consciousness).

There are false religions and certainly false teachers, as well.

So when high minded people speak about religious unity they are saying two things:

1. The religious impulse in humankind is the same everywhere – desire to be free from  suffering and achieve permanent happiness (Bliss) via Divine attunement.

2. That by religion they implicitly exclude those which are false or which affirm values that are not inclusive and high-minded.

Another way of putting this simply is that by calling your beliefs religious does not make them so if in your heart lies evil and hatred.

Such teachings and intentions have always existed in the known history of humanity.

Have faith in the triumph of goodness for as Mahatma Gandhi put it (paraphrasing): The fact that humanity survives evil and suffering proves that evil and hatred are not the final result or underlying impulse.

Ananda Moyi Ma replied to a frustrated and worried devotee about the carnage during the partition of India, “Don’t you think He who made this world knows how to run it?”

Gandhi is also famous for reminding us to BE THE CHANGE WE SEEK IN THE WORLD. Don’t resonate with those who hate! Take company with those who love God and love the God in all.

Be of good cheer. “If you only knew how much God loved you, you would die for joy.”

Nayaswami Hriman
Seattle WA USA