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  1. How according to you is Islam the greatest religion? Dr. V Jaganmohan asked: Would you please enlighten us on the following: How is Islam greater than any other religion? By Islam, do you mean the ideology as developed on the teachings of the Koran, Hadis, and Mohammed? Thanking you, Sincerely, DrVJ. Discourse Podcast Swami replied: You must be knowing that in Hinduism we do some special rituals called vratams to worship God. Some examples are the Satyanaaraayana Swami Vratam, Varalakshmii Vratam, Nandikeshvara Vratam, Mangala Gauri Vratam and so on. You must have observed that a common verse is read out in each of these rituals. The meaning of the verse is that this ritual is the best of all rituals (vrataanaam uttamam vratam). How is this possible when the superlative degree must be used for only one in a given group? You can say that this student is the best in the class. You cannot say that every student in the class is the best. This is the underlying doubt in your question. The answer for this reasonable doubt is that you must first know that God is the greatest as said in the Veda (Na tat samah) and in the Gita (Mattah parataram...). The common object of all the above rituals and forms of worships is the same greatest unimaginable God existing in different divine forms. From the point of view of the common God who is the greatest, every worship becomes the greatest. Similarly, all religions are like different roads converging to the common center, which is the greatest God. Hence, every religion is the greatest. We should get rid of all fanatic behavior towards our religion. It causes us to look upon other religions as inferior to our religion. Every religion says that God alone created this earth and humanity on it. If the Gods of different religions were different, there would have been different earths. But unfortunately, there is only one earth. So, we are forced to accept the existence of only one God! The God of the other religion is also the God who created us and the God of our religion is also the God who created them. There is only one God and one created earth! The external names and forms of the same God differ from religion to religion, but the internal God is only one. If you disrespect the form and the name of the God of another religion, you are disrespecting the God of your own religion. Do you respect a person only when he wears a certain dress and disrespect the same person when he wears another dress?
  2. Why is Islam associated with violence, meat-eating and other defects? Shri Anil asked: Padanamaskaram Swami! Suraj Advaita asked the following doubts in a forum and is seeking their clarification from You. Kindly give Your reply. At Your divine feet, Anil. Why is Islam causing problems everywhere? Why is the Quran so negatively written? Why does Islam allow meat-eating, when Sanatana Dharma does not allow it? If meat eating is sin, why are Muslims allowed to eat meat? Is Islam the Devil’s religion? Also, please let me know what things on your channel I should propagate? I have read most of your articles and I have liked them. Where can I find all your articles? Discourse Podcast Swami replied: Sin is sin irrespective of the religion a person follows. No divine scripture allows any human being to follow sin. But when a certain sin is inevitable and when no single person can change it among the people belonging to a certain religion or region, the divine scripture neglects for the time being. The scripture, in its preaching, concentrates on the control of other sins at least. Even in Hinduism, non-vegetarian food is consumed by people belonging to several sects. You cannot blame Muslims alone for consuming non-vegetarian food since non-vegetarians are present in almost all religions. There are several good and bad qualities in every religion. You should not blame any specific religion for non-vegetarianism since it is found in almost all religions. Even in Buddhism, which is famous for non-violence, people consumed non-vegetarian food right from the time of Buddha. Except for Jainism, non-vegetarianism has always existed in every religion of the world. Eating non-vegetarian food is a sin because it involves the killing of animals and birds to obtain their meat. There is no sin in merely eating non-vegetarian food if it does not involve the killing of harmless creatures. Eating non-vegetarian food obtained from naturally dead animals is not considered to be sin. Kaapaalikas in Hinduism eat the meat of naturally dead living beings and it is not counted as a sin. Hence, eating either vegetarian or non-vegetarian food is not a sin directly. Eating non-vegetarian food becomes an indirect sin due to the killing of animals for their meat. We should not provoke quarrels among the followers of religions by finding faults with other people’s religions. Faults are present in all the religions in one form or another. Such fanatic behavior must be avoided to bring peace to this world. An atom of goodness in us appears to us as a mountain while the mountain of badness in us appears to us as an atom! In the case of others, we reverse the policy: an atom of badness in others appears to us as a mountain and the mountain of goodness in others appears to us as an atom! Such biased behavior results in quarrels among religions. Actually, we must look at things in exactly the opposite manner. We must see an atom of badness in us as a mountain and a mountain of goodness in us as an atom. Similarly, we must see an atom of goodness in others as a mountain and a mountain of badness in others as an atom. By looking at things in this manner, we can avoid quarrels, not only with other religions but also with all our fellow-human beings. Such behavior is the basis of bringing peace in our family, in our city, in our state, in our country and finally in this entire world. If there is any human being who is trying hard to bring peace in this world, God likes that person to the greatest extent because God wants this world, created and maintained by Him, to run peacefully. Anybody violating this main aim of God becomes the object of His terrible anger. In Hinduism, people kill animals in a ritual called yajna, which means sacrifice. But the Veda clearly says “Manyuh pashuh”, which means that the ‘animal’ to be killed is the rigid, animal-like foolishness, which makes a human being follow blind traditions without analysis. As a symbolic representation of this concept, it is suggested that the flour of useless non-germinating grains be shaped into the form of an animal and that form be cut with a knife. The form of the animal made out of flour is called a Pistapashuh. This practice of cutting the flour-animal exists in the sacrifice or yajna which is performed with knowledge. Such a yajna is called ishti. But people who were fond of non-vegetarian food exploited this concept by replacing the flour-animal with an actual animal in order to justify the killing of animals for meat. Such people will not stop killing animals for food even if the Veda orders them to stop. For the sake of such people, the Veda introduced the concept of offering the meat to God after killing the animal. That way, the killer is at least introduced to the concept of the existence of God. He is reminded of the concept that all his sins, including this one, will inevitably be punished by the unimaginable God. The punishment is delivered to him in an unimaginable way so he can never escape from it. In the procedures of such yajnas, the Veda describes the killing of the animal only as an inevitable incidental step. It does not mean that the Veda is ordering you to kill the animal. The description of killing the animal is being included in the procedure since, due to your taste for meat, you will kill the animal anyway and you will not stop even if the Veda orders you to stop killing. We should be clear that the Veda is not encouraging people to kill animals. When the sin is inevitable due to people’s hard-to-change habit, the Veda is temporarily allowing it, with the hope of changing the habit in the future. After killing the animal, at the very least, people can offer the meat to God before consuming it themselves. It will strengthen the concept of God in people’s minds. Once the concepts of God, His unimaginable omnipotence and His punishment of sins are firmly established in their minds, changing their habit of meat-eating will be easier. So, the Veda contains descriptions of even the inevitable killing of animals, which is incidental to offering the meat to God. The blind ritualists (Puurvamiimaamsakaas) take these incidental descriptions of the killing of animals in the procedures of the Vedic sacrifices as orders given by the Veda to kill! In this context, Shankara clarified that the Veda is only stating the incidental step of killing, which you will do anyway and that it is not ordering or encouraging you to kill (Jnaapakam na tu kaarakam). So, one can never put the blame of this sin on the Veda! Similarly, the Quran also states the incidental step of killing the animal, while describing the procedure of offering the meat of the animal to Allah (Bismillah). These people who are in the habit of eating meat will not stop killing animals for their meat even if the Quran orders them to stop. So, you cannot blame the Quran for supporting the killing of animals. If you blame the Quran, you will have to equally blame the Veda too! The intention of the scripture is only to temporarily follow the rigid ignorance of people who kill animals so that the crucial concept of God as the Punisher of sins can be established. Once this concept is established, controlling these people becomes a lot easier. The same God revealed both the Veda and the Quran and hence, the concepts of the two divine scriptures cannot be different. Using this analysis, every human being in this world must develop Universal Spirituality, which is based on one God as the single Source of all divine scriptures and religions. Spirituality means the theoretical knowledge or philosophy. Religion is the practical path of worship of God and maintaining justice in the world. Upon understanding Universal Spirituality, each one must join the Universal Religion, while staying in one’s own religion.
  3. Following a religion strictly and simultaneously following the universal spirituality of all world religions are one and the same concept. I illustrate this by an example. You have the required medicine for a specific disease in a single bottle. If you strictly take 4ml of the medicine per day from that single bottle only, your illness is completely cured, since the quality of the medicine is same in all the four bottles. 4ml per day from a single bottle or 1ml per day from four bottles stand to be the same in both quality and quantity. Firm belief and strict discipline in using the medicine must exist whether you take the specific quantity of the same medicine from one bottle or from four bottles. You cannot say that a person strictly following the use of medicine from one bottle only, rejecting other bottles, as blind fool in the sense of curing the illness by using the medicine. When you scold the same medicine in other three bottles, it reflects your foolishness of theoretical ignorance. But, in practical sense, there is no loss if a conservative devotee follows the use of medicine from a single bottle rejecting the other three bottles. Even in the case of a wise man with broad mentality (of universal spirituality) using the same medicine in the same quantity from all the four bottles, the conservative and severe sincerity and firm faith on medicine is the same as that of a conservative blind devotee using the same medicine from a single bottle. As far as the faith on the medicine and the practical usage of specified quantity of medicine is concerned, both universal devotee and conservative devotee are one and the same. Of course, the conservative devotee is not at all blamed in following the use of medicine from a single bottle, but, is blamed for scolding the same medicine in the other three bottles due to ignorance. Instead of scolding, the conservative devotee must be silent about the other bottles and should concentrate on the single bottle about which only he has total faith. You may say that even if the patient scolds other three bottles, the medicine of his selected bottle will not affect in its quality and function. You are perfectly correct, but, you are crossing the limits of simile and applying the concept to the outer restricted area of limits of the simile. Here, the simile is inert medicine and not a living person. This is the limit of the simile and concept is applicable to simile as long as you don’t scold the medicine of other three bottles. The medicine here is compared to God, who is not inert, but has awareness to the extent of infinity based on which we say that God is omniscient. If you praise a person in one dress and scold the same person in other dresses, is he not hurt since he is not like the inert medicine? Since the God in all religions is one and the same, all your praise to God in a specific form of a specific religion goes not only waste, but also, make God to become furious. Hiranyakashipu was a strong devotee of Lord Shiva, but, scolds Lord Vishnu. Both Shiva and Vishnu are different forms or external medium of the same inner unimaginable God. Lord Vishnu appeared as Narasimha and killed the demon. You should note that Lord Shiva did not protect the demon at all! What is the reason? The reason is that Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu are the same one entity wearing the external media or forms called Shiva and Vishnu. This is the concept between two sub-religions called Shaivism and Vaishnavism in the same Hindu religion. This story is one and the same whether it is in micro-level (sub-religions of Hindu religion) or at macro-level (world religions like Hinduism, Christianity, Islam etc.). The first part of the scripture presents the severe discipline and firm faith in the medicine to be followed by every devotee of each religion. In the second part of universal spirituality, the revered Prophet Mohammed warns every devotee of each religion not to scold forms of God of other religions. Allah is one external form represented by Islam religion. Jehovah is another form of God presented by Christianity. Brahman is another form of God presented by Hinduism and so on. God is one and the same present in all the world religions. You are advised to respect and serve your father sincerely. If possible, realize the fathers of all other people also equal to your father and respect and serve them. If it is not possible, respect and serve your father only and not scold and insult others’ fathers. Seeing own defects and merits in others is the path of self-construction. One should always see the defects in himself/herself and in his/her religion and merits in others and other religions so that one can rectify the self and own religion. By this, one will be in the correct path of construction. Today, everybody sees his/her merits only and always defects in others, which is the path of self-destruction comprising ego to self and jealousy to others. My religion is universal religion and hence, I criticised Hinduism also and praised other religions in certain points. You should not misunderstand Me that I am criticising other religions because I am Hindu. I don't belong to any specific religion. I belong to universal religion, which comprises only merits of all religions. I have criticised Hinduism in several points and praised other religions in those points. For example:- I criticised blind recitation of scripture without explaining the meaning in rituals whereas in other religions I appreciate the scripture being read from book and explained by the priests. () ---------------------------------- From the divine message of Shri Datta Swami (Universal Spirituality for World Peace)
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