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Religion - A Global View
Many times a seeker of Truth is troubled by the perplexing questions, "Common sense says that there can be only one supreme. But if there is only one God, then why are there so many religions, so many scriptures and so many gods niemiuned in them? And whom should I follow? Which is the perfect path'1 back to the kingdom of God?" God is one. lheretoreall scriptures being the word oi that one God, teach the same truths in essence. But God gives His message, directly or through His messenger, according to the capacity of the individuals who receive it. If the message is for the spiritually advanced, then it may be given in an undiluted pure form. If the message is for the morally and spiritually degraded it is suitably modified to preclude rejection and yet help them to make limited spiritual progress. Unawareness of this fundamental principle, which underlies and unifies the diverse religions of the world, has resulted in religious conflicts, confrontations, wars and so on throughout history. An example explains this.In elementary school Mathematics, a child is taught basic addition and subtraction such as 5-2 = 3. But if he is asked, "What is 2 - 5 = ?", he will say that it is not possible to subtract a bigger number from a smaller number. But when he goes to high school, he learns 2 - 5 = -3. That is also Mathematics. When he goes to college, he learns differential calculus, integral calculus etc. which is also Mathematics. Although the knowledge he has acquired at each level comes under the subject of Mathematics, still there is a difference of standard between elementary school Maths and M.Sc. Maths. The teacher may himself be a Ph.D. in Maths, but he teaches according to the level of understanding of the student, depending on whether he is in an elementary school, high school or college.