Introduction; Chapter 1
The Thomases’ Road to Realization?
The foremost thing that every young and religious mind should and will eventually learn is that ‘Organized religion is just a guideline to help each individual to walk his own personal road to realization’. Religion is thus supposed to serve each person and not vice versa. Just as Jesus tells us ‘The Sabbath is for man and women and not they for the Sabbath’. But when one is born a Christian, a Hindu.., the mind automatically believes that the individual is the servant of the religion.
Thomas as we know was the follower of Jesus who said he won’t believe that Jesus has risen until he saw him with his own eyes and touched the wounds in his hands. But the Thomas I intend here may not be exactly like the Biblical Thomas who only doubted that Jesus could have risen. The Thomas I refer to is in general to any person of any faith and also in particular to a Christian (in more probability a catholic like me) who may have ‘any doubt’ whether about truth in teachings of other religions or any aspect of one’s own religion. He could also be a Christian open to all the wisdom in the world and for whom that has been a reason of many of his tormenting doubts. He can see the beauty of truth in all religions but is not able to account for contradictions in the basic beliefs of the religions. He wants to put his complete faith in Christianity, because he cannot reject what he is born into, but having a thinking mind he cannot overlook the contradictory teaching of the other scriptures of the world either. (Of course a skeptic can be male or female; but I have used the male pronouns all through the book which is merely for convenience.) I have been a skeptic, for many years who did not know how to trust the Christian teachings about God, when challenged by the seemingly contradictory wisdom of the other major religions of the world. The contradictions did seem irresolvable and yet surprisingly I have been provided over time with answers that have finally put an end to my doubts and the answers have been such, that make me a devout Christian and yet a believer of truth to all scriptures! These answers I am sharing in this book.
The young Christian who wishes to analyze all “good words” will learn in this book that “two contradictory truths can co-exist”. That is, two seemingly contradictory ideas can both be actually true! For example, ‘Jesus is the only begotten son of God as per Christian belief and yet, all of us are sons and daughters of God in line with a philosophy that says “that thou art”!’ Or consider these statements ‘There is only one way to God (Christianity)’, ‘There are many ways to God (Hinduism)’. Yes, both these are true statements too! For truth is only a matter of looking again after removing the coloured glasses that we unknowingly get used to wearing.