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Shvoong Home>Arts & Humanities>Philosophy>Multiple Faiths Summary

Multiple Faiths

Article Summary   by:Trek     Original Author: Bertrand Russell.
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How many different religions are there in the world? Does anybody know? Probably there are thousands but there may be many that we don''t know about, for example in the depths of some unexplored jungle there may be people who believe that the cedar tree is a God and that they should bow down to it/him/her every couple of hours. Who knows? Nobody. But surely it''s true to say that their religion is as valid as any other because there is no religion that has come about because scientific evidence has proved its existence; no, all religions depend upon faith, faith in a deity whose existence is only "known" because someone - a guru, a priest, a witchdoctor - has told us about it. That is, the religion has been made known to us through revelation, which means that someone experienced a feeling that he/she was being communicated to directly from God.
All religions depend upon revelation; revelation cannot be proved not to be falacious. Indeed, scientific proof of a revelation would, by virtue of its meaning, render it invalid.
Suppose then that there are 2000 different religions in the world. Now every one is considered by its followers to be "the truth". But only one (at most) can be "the only truth". Which one is it? "Mine" everyone says. 1999 of those who shout "mine" are believers in false doctrines. Only one (at most) can be "the true faith". How do you know that it''s the one you follow? Perhaps the one in the jungle is the true belief. Who knows? Only one being knows and that is God. So why doesn''t he tell us which one?
Which reminds me of what Bertrand Russell said when asked "What would you say to God if you went to Heaven?" Russell answered: "I would ask him why he had not revealed himself to me before now."
My question would be: "Why have you desired to be worshipped at all especially as there are so many dreadful practitioners of your ''word''in the world?"
Trek.
Published: July 16, 2007   
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