Embracing Spiritual Diversity: By Dr. Harsh K. Luthar
We often have the idea that our spiritual and religious beliefs and truths are absolute. However, psychologists tell us that where we are born, how we are brought up, the values of our parents and friends, and systems of education we are exposed to have an enormous influence on our thinking and how we perceive reality.
So, here we are, fairly intelligent, well educated, and even thoughtful people; and yet it is not easy to question the beliefs that we were raised in, which are part of our personality, and in some sense constitute our identity.
It seems to me that the same divine light appears to reflect differently and uniquely through each embodied soul. Our strength of conviction, when it leads to belittlement of others, reveals our own insecurities and attachments.
Great sages, based on the strength of their spiritual experience and understanding (and not just intellectual knowledge of scriptures) have given us the pearls of wisdom and taught Ahimsa Parama Dharma. It means that Nonviolence is the first principle on all spiritual paths, however one may conceive them.
The fact is that men and women of God rise in every religion and spiritual tradition. Just like the Sun shines on everyone equally, God makes no distinctions. Some people do believe that they have access to the ultimate truth and it can only be achieved through their path. However, Truth is not a monopoly of any particular system of thought. In fact, Truth cannot be captured by thought.
Let us make space for others to express their spiritual understanding and support everyone in their faith and their path. In making space for others we only make space for ourselves.
We are nowhere other than in the Space of Awareness.