Origin The Challenge to the Global Community of Religions
"In this new ecological age of developing global community and interfaith dialogue, the world religions face what is perhaps the greatest challenge that they have ever encountered. Each is inspired by a unique vision of the divine and has a distinct cultural identity. At the same time, each perceives the divine as the source of unity and peace. The challenge is to preserve their religious and cultural uniqueness without letting it operate as a cause of narrow and divisive sectarianism that contradicts the vision of unity and peace. It is a question of whether the healing light of religious vision will overcome the social and ideological issues that underline much of the conflict between religions." ~ Dr. Steven C. Rockefeller, Middlebury College, Spirit and Nature, p. 169
CONTENTS | INVOCATION | INTRODUCTION | PROLOGUE | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21


Title Page
This Archive
Advisors and Contributors
Foreword by Ninian Smart
How to obtain a printed (hardbound/paperback) version


The Truth in Many Paths
Tolerance and Respect for All Believers

The Purpose of World Scripture
The Organization of World Scripture
The World's Religions and Their Scriptures

World Scripture and Education for Peace

Ultimate Reality and the Purpose of Human Existence

CHAPTER 1: Ultimate Reality
Traces of God's Existence
The One
Formless, Emptiness, Mystery
Transcendent, All-Pervasive Reality
Sovereign and Omnipotent
Immanent and Near at Hand
Eternal -- in a World of Transience
The Creator
Goodness and Love
Divine Father and Mother

CHAPTER 2: Divine Law, Truth, and Cosmic Principle
Eternal Truth
Moral Law
The Decalogue
The Golden Rule
Polarity, Relationality, and Interdependence
Cosmic Justice

CHAPTER 3: The Purpose of Life for the Individual
Joy and Happiness
For God's Good Pleasure
Image of God and Temple of God
Inborn Goodness and Conscience
Original Mind, No Mind
True Love

CHAPTER 4: The Purpose of Life in the Family and in Society
The Family
Parents and Children
Husband and Wife
Unity and Community
The People of God
The Ideal Society

CHAPTER 5: The Purpose of Life in the Natural World
The Sanctity of Nature
Reverence for Life
The Microcosm
The Lord of Spirits
Creation Rejoices

CHAPTER 6: Life Beyond Death and the Spiritual World
The Spiritual World: Mystery, Multiplicity, Analogy, Harmony
The Immortal Soul
Prepare Now for Eternity
Passage Beyond
Spiritual Benefactors
Spiritual Error and the Occult

Evil, Sin, and the Human Fall

CHAPTER 7: The Human Condition
The War Within
Pride and Egotism
Selfish Desire, Lust, and Greed

CHAPTER 8: Fall and Deviation
The Human Fall
Demonic Powers
Degraded Human Nature
God's Grief

CHAPTER 9: The Major Sins
Good and Evil
Lying and Deceit
Slander, Gossip and Foul Speech

Salvation and the Savior

CHAPTER 10: Salvation-Liberation-Enlightenment
Universal Salvation
Atonement and Forgiveness of Sins
Crossing the Waters
Reversal and Restoration
Help and Deliverance
The Refining Fire
Born Anew
Eternal Life
The Unitive State

CHAPTER 11: The Founder
Call and Awakening
Rejected by the World
The Victor
He Who Subjugates Satan
The Revealer of Truth
The Man for Others
The Living Presence
The Person and Character of the Founder: Divine Person
Human Person
The Succession of Founders and Messengers

The Religious Life

CHAPTER 12: Responsibility and Predestination
Individual Responsibility
Karma and Inherited Sin

CHAPTER 13: Self-cultivation and Spiritual Growth
Spiritual Growth
Cultivate the Good
Preparing the Start
Perseverance and Patience

CHAPTER 14: Faith
Devotion and Praise
Fear, Submission, and Obedience
Argument with God

CHAPTER 15: Wisdom
The Search for Knowledge
Scripture and Tradition
Poverty of Conceptual Learning
Scripture Teaches in Parables
Learning and Practice
Teacher and Disciple
New Wine and Old Wineskins

CHAPTER 16: Worship
The Name of God
Beyond Ritual

CHAPTER 17: Offering and Sacrifice
Persecution and Martyrdom

CHAPTER 18: Self-Denial and Renunciation
Self-denial and No-self
Repentance, Confession, and Restitution
Restraint and Moderation
Control Anger
Subdue Desires and Passions
Detachment from the Senses
Renunciation of Wealth
Asceticism and Monasticism
Separation from Family
Separation from the World

CHAPTER 19: Live for Others
Serving Others
Sacrificial Love
Giving and Receiving
Charity and Hospitality
Forgiveness and Reconciliation
Judge Not
Love Your Enemy
Turn the Other Cheek
Good Deeds
Labor and Industry
Honesty and Expediency

Providence, Society, and the Kingdom of Heaven

CHAPTER 20: Good Government and the Welfare of Society
The Pillars of Society
The Prophet and Reformer
War Against Evil
Respect for Legitimate Governments
Government by Divine Law
Consideration for the People
Leadership by Example and Honest Government
Judgments and Punishments
Providence and the Mandate of Heaven

CHAPTER 21: Eschatology and Messianic Hope
The Last Judgment
The Messiah
The Kingdom of Heaven

Interspirit Network for global illumination
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It is said that the pen is mightier than the sword. Similarly, a lie may do more damage than a gun fired in anger. Lying is the doorway to any number of evils. But we may distinguish between lying in the sense of teaching a falsehood about Reality--e.g., propagating atheism or a false doctrine--and lying in the sense of deliberately misleading and deceiving another about a matter of which he has certain knowledge. The first type of lie may in fact be based on honest conviction; the second type of lie is deliberate deception. In this section, we have gathered passages on lying and falsehood only the latter sense of deliberate deception; untruth in the former sense may be classed as Ignorance, pp. 280-285. Even so, often there is only a short distance between ignorance about truth and lying to one's neighbor, as several passages in this section affirm.

Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord.

1. Judaism and Christianity. Proverbs 12.22

Do not assert with your mouth what your heart denies.

2. Taoism. Tract of the Quiet Way

No man should talk one way with his lips and think another way in his heart.

3. Judaism. Talmud, Baba Metzia 49

Dishonesty in business or the uttering of lies causes inner sorrow.

4. Sikhism. Adi Granth, Maru Solahe, M.3, p. 1062

O you who believe, wherefore do you say what you do not?
Very hateful is it to God, that you say what you do not.

5. Islam. Qur'an 61.2-3

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Qur'an 61.2-3: Cf. Matthew 23.2-3, p. 810; Analects 2.13, p. 810; Dhammapada 51-52, p. 811; James 1.22-24, p. 811.
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No man who practices deceit shall dwell in my house; no man who utters lies shall continue in my presence.

6. Judaism and Christianity. Psalm 101.7

A speaker of falsehood reaches purgatory; and again so does one who, having done a misdeed, says, "I did not." Both of them, men of base deeds, become equal in the other world.

7. Buddhism. Dhammapada 306

Lying does not mean that one could not be rich;
Treachery does not mean you may not live to old age;
But it is the day of death [judgment] about which one should be baffled.

8. African Traditional Religions. Yoruba Proverb (Nigeria)

Falsehood implies the making of a wrong statement by one who is overwhelmed by intense passions.

9. Jainism. Upasakadasanga Sutra

You brood of vipers! how can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil man out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment men will render account for every careless word they utter; for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.

10. Christianity. Matthew 12.34-37

There is no evil that cannot be done by the liar, who has transgressed the one law of truthfulness and who is indifferent to the world beyond.

11. Buddhism. Dhammapada 176

All things are determined by speech; speech is their root, and from speech they proceed. Therefore he who is dishonest with respect to speech is dishonest in everything.

12. Hinduism. Laws of Manu 4.256

There are three characteristics of a hypocrite: when he speaks, he lies; when he makes a promise, he acts treacherously; and when he is trusted, he betrays.

13. Islam. Hadith of Muslim

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Psalm 101.7: Cf. Psalm 24.3-6, p. 229; Shabbat 31a, p. 1020. Yoruba Proverb: Don't think that just because you have used lying to advantage in this world, that lying will similarly avail you in the hereafter. Cf. Yoruba Proverbs, p. 1019. Matthew 12.34-37: Cf. Matthew 15.11-20, p. 860. Dhammapada 176: Cf. Tosefta Shebuot 3.6, p. 397. Laws of Manu 4.256: Cf. Markandeya Purana, p. 494; Matthew 15.11-20, p. 860; James 3.6-9, p. 496.
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Confucius said, "I do not see what use a man can be put to, whose word cannot be trusted. How can a wagon be made to go if it has no yoke-bar, or a carriage if it has no collar-bar?"

14. Confucianism. Analects 2.22

The Venerable Rahula saw the Lord coming in the distance; seeing him he made ready a seat and water for washing the feet. The Lord sat down on the seat made ready; as he was sitting down he bathed his feet. And Rahula, having greeted the Lord, sat down at a respectful distance.

Then the Lord put a little quantity of water that was left over into the water vessel and addressed Rahula, saying, "Do you, Rahula, see this little quantity of water that is left over and that is put into the water vessel?"

"Yes, revered sir."

"Even so, Rahula, little is the recluseship of those who have no shame at intentional lying."

Then the Lord, having thrown away that little quantity of water, addressed Rahula, saying, "Do you, Rahula, see this little quantity of water that has been thrown away?"

"Yes, revered sir."

"Even so, Rahula, thrown away is the recluseship of those who have no shame at intentional lying."

15. Buddhism. Majjhima Nikaya i.414, Ambalatthika-Rahulovada Sutta

A liar lies to himself as well as to the gods. Lying is the origin of all evils; it leads to rebirth in the miserable planes of existence, to breach of the pure precepts, and to corruption of the body.

16. Buddhism. Maharatnakuta Sutra 27, Bodhisattva Surata's Discourse

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil,
who put darkness for light and light for darkness,
who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!

17. Judaism and Christianity. Isaiah 5.20

Beings who are ashamed of what is not shameful, and are not ashamed of what is shameful, embrace wrong views and go to a woeful state.

Beings who see fear in what is not to be feared, and see no fear in the fearsome, embrace false views and go to a woeful state.

Beings who imagine faults in the faultless and perceive no wrong in what is wrong, embrace false views and go to a woeful state.

18. Buddhism. Dhammapada 316-18

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Analects 2.22: Cf. Analects 15.5, p. 1020. Maharatnakuta Sutra 27: The Maharatnakuta Sutra is a collection of Mahayana sutras in the Chinese Tripitaka.
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