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Thread: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

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    A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    Radical Universalism

    Does Hinduism Teach That All Religions Are The Same? A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    By Dr. Frank Morales, Ph.D. (Sri Dharma Pravartaka Acharya)

    http://www.dharmacentral.com/universalism.htm

    I opened this thread, because the subject is comming up in other discussion. Here's a place to discuss the subject of radical universalism.

    Please refrain from personal attacks to people participating in this discussion, don't make this a smear campaign against any acharya and please don't cloud this thread with unrelated posts about other subjects. Try to make yourself clear without belittling anyone participating in the discussion. I hope we can carry on this discussion maturely. If there was any tension between participants, please forget about it and start fresh.
    Last edited by Sahasranama; 26 September 2010 at 08:15 AM.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by Sahasranama View Post
    In this case I'd agree more with David Frawley and Koenraad Elst. But the point in the other threads wasn't to discuss Dr. Morales as a person with all his opinions, the discussion was limited to the concept of Radical Universalism.
    Namaste sahasranama

    Can you kindly define the term Radical Universalism for me? What you understand by the term? Also kindly educate me (because i am not aware) as to who else other than Frank Morales has used this term to describe Hindu teachers (and to belittle them)?

    In advance, I say that the following two statements are not same:

    "all religions are the same ----", which is held by Dr. Frank Morales as Radical Universalism that Hindu sages have taught. Morales has created a false impression. No Hindu teacher has taught "all religions are the same ----". (If you disagree on this then show me evidence of any hindu teacher saying ""all religions are the same ----").

    vs.

    "God is One and His redeeming purpose is universal in scope --", this as per me is held by Veda followers. However, it is against the churchian concept that only Jesus will redeem. That God's redeeming role as teacher/guru is universal is staunchly opposed by political leaders of church.

    Om Namah Shivaya

    Note: Let us clarify our positions clearly.
    That which is without letters (parts) is the Fourth, beyond apprehension through ordinary means, the cessation of the phenomenal world, the auspicious and the non-dual. Thus Om is certainly the Self. He who knows thus enters the Self by the Self.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    Friends

    If one goes deeper, one will find that actually the Universalism of Hinduism, as taught by Kanchi Paramacharya that God redeems universally (which is in contrast to the Christian position that God redeems only those who put their faith on Jesus -- a mere name), is actually vehemently opposed by Churchians.

    http://www.banneroftruth.org/pages/a...detail.php?439

    Kindly read the article "The Banner of Truth", fully and patiently to differentiate between the inclusive and exclusive views.

    The article begins with a question:

    it is argued that if God's redeeming purpose is universal in scope, why should we any longer accept Christianity's arrogant claim to be the one true religion?
    And ends up with a conclusion as below:


    4. BIBLICAL UNIVERSALISM.
    In contrast to these erroneous forms of universalism, the Bible teaches a true universalism. It repeatedly states that God's saving purpose is universal in scope in that the 'elect from every nation' are embraced by it. As Geerhardus Vos says in his Biblical Theology, even the particularism of the Old Testament merely serves and leads up to the universalism of the New. Hence John 3.16, both misunderstood and misapplied by Arminians, refers to the truth that God's love for our corrupt world (and not merely for the Jews) is so great that He is willing to save whoever believes on Christ from any and every part of it.
    If Christ is only a God of Christians of a limited form sitting on a throne, and not the universal all pervading Brahman, then the above is a dangerous concept.

    In contrast, Veda simply says that the Truth is One.

    Om Namah Shivaya

    Note: I request humbly that let keep away sarcasm.
    That which is without letters (parts) is the Fourth, beyond apprehension through ordinary means, the cessation of the phenomenal world, the auspicious and the non-dual. Thus Om is certainly the Self. He who knows thus enters the Self by the Self.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by atanu View Post
    Namaste sahasranama

    Can you kindly define the term Radical Universalism for me? What you understand by the term? Also kindly educate me (because i am not aware) as to who else other than Frank Morales has used this term to describe Hindu teachers (and to belittle them)?
    The term radical universalism refers to the belief that all paths will lead to the same goal. The mountain metaphor has been given by Dr. Morales which was orignally a story from Ramana Maharshi if I am right. Radical Universalist believe that all religions are paths on the same mountain leading to the same goal.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    Deleted
    Last edited by atanu; 28 September 2010 at 02:17 PM.
    That which is without letters (parts) is the Fourth, beyond apprehension through ordinary means, the cessation of the phenomenal world, the auspicious and the non-dual. Thus Om is certainly the Self. He who knows thus enters the Self by the Self.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    All religions are the same should be understood in the context of the article, that all religions are worshipping the same god and everyone will also reach the same god if their effort is sincere. How that happens are just details, that's the radical universalist standpoint.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    Deleted
    Last edited by atanu; 28 September 2010 at 02:18 PM.
    That which is without letters (parts) is the Fourth, beyond apprehension through ordinary means, the cessation of the phenomenal world, the auspicious and the non-dual. Thus Om is certainly the Self. He who knows thus enters the Self by the Self.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    You have to understand that statement in the context of the article in the sense that all paths will lead to the same goal and everyone is worshipping the same god. This is the point that the article is trying to make.

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    namaste everyone.

    I wonder how and why Sahasranama reads his own definition of the term 'Radical Universalism' that

    "All religions are the same should be understood in the context of the article, that all religions are worshipping the same god and everyone will also reach the same god if their effort is sincere. How that happens are just details, that's the radical universalist standpoint." (post no.7)

    into Frank Morales' proclaimed and clear-cut of definition of Raducal Universalism as "All Religions Are The Same" right from the title throughout the article. It is with this definition that he proceeds to analysize its 'fallacies' in the article, in an effort to equate social reformers like Raja Ram Mohan Roy with the Self-realized sages Ramakrishna and Vivekananda.

    As against this definition of Morales, the key phrases 'same god' and 'sincere effort' in Sahasranama's definition above are not at all found in Morales' article! To be more precise, the phrase 'same god', and the words 'sincere' and 'efforts' are not at all mentioned, although the words 'sincerely' and 'efforts' are used in different contexts!

    Therefore, it is indisputable, that the definition of RU that Frank Morales takes up for discussion and burdens it on some Hindu gurus as their own teachings is: All Religions Are The Same.

    That established, it is shocking to think how lazy and indifferent we Hindus are! Without reading the realized teachings of our gurus which are often in our mother tongue, we take up academic and intellectual interpretations of Western scholars and pass it on to our own children, with the result that the child strays away from Hindu Dharma and becomes easy target for conversion, and worse, blames it on its parents: 'You only taught me that all religions are the same!" (http://anand-vsiyer.blogspot.com/)

    Who is the Radical Universalist here, Hindu gurus or careless Hindu parents? In fact, what we should teach our children when such queries about Abrahmic religions come forth is that:

    • All religions are not the same, although they all say that God is One.

    • Our AchAryas DO NOT teach that all religions are the same as some mischievous people try to make you believe. All they teach is that God is the same, named differently in different religions, and people of all faiths worship only one God, although the names and ways and means differ. God accepts all worship done with sincerity, and grants the material and spiritual desires of people to the extent they aspire for it.

    • Our traditional Hindu Dharma is the most comprehensive religion suited for all people with different mental makeup. Here you can worship One Formless God, or his many names and forms--as One God, Many Gods, Male and Female Gods, Gods in the form of Divine Children, one or many of them,--all in different ways and still get your material and spiritual desires granted, provided you follow the Hindu Dharma.

    • Our Hindu Dharma and the Abrahamic religions can never be the same because we believe in karma and rebirth, therfore, many lives and deaths for the human soul; whereas they believe in only one life and one death, after which every soul goes to either eternal heaven or eternal hell. Our rebirth concept gives the erring souls repeated chances to correct any misdeeds, reform itself, advance spiritually, and get liberated, whereas in their religions a soul is either liberated or doomed for eternity after one life. Therefore, how can our AchAryas, who always stress these things in their talks, teach that Hindu Dharma and Abrahamic religions are the same?

    *****

    During the colonial rule in India, Western Indologists closed down our classical education system, corrupted our scriptures and minds with a Christian Agenda. Today, some people under the pretext/notion of spreading Hinduism across the globe,

    fervently try to corrupt the teachings of some of our revered and Self-Realized Hindu gurus by superficial interpretation or reckless misinterpretion,

    and wean gullible young Hindu minds from the Hindu legacy, culture and tradition.

    It is high time that native Hindus and the Hindu diaspora educate themselves and their children about the teachings of traditional Hindu Dharma and be aware of the negative forces that constantly try to besiege us.
    रत्नाकरधौतपदां हिमालयकिरीटिनीम् ।
    ब्रह्मराजर्षिररत्नाढ्यां वन्दे भारतमातरम् ॥

    To her whose feet are washed by the ocean, who wears the Himalayas as her crown, and is adorned with the gems of rishis and kings, to Mother India, do I bow down in respect.

    --viShNu purANam

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    Re: A Philosophical Critique of Radical Universalism

    Pranam all

    I am no universalistic I feel certain so called religion in their present form or inception were born out of violence and knows no other means to talk to the world. They were the cause of misery for thousand year for the follower of Hindu dharma and continue to be, on that back we can understand why so many of us feel the way we do, why give them an inch.

    But what language do the Gurus speak if not of love. After all a sadhu should see a dog, dog eater cow and brahmana with equal vision so it is no surprise if asked about other religion they would only see good in it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Sahasranama View Post
    The term radical universalism refers to the belief that all paths will lead to the same goal. .



    How is this any difference from what lord Krishna says;

    ye yatha mam prapadyante
    tams tathaiva bhajamy aham
    mama vartmanuvartante
    manusyah partha sarvasah

    All of them--as they surrender unto Me--I reward accordingly. Everyone follows My path in all respects, O son of Prtha.4.11

    Here is the biggest universalism, so if the guru echoes the same message we should not get perturbed.instead we should use the power of vivek.

    Some paths are straight some crooked and some in complete opposite direction, only that eventually all will lead to that eternal truth.
    This journey is arduous make no mistake, if I know that, the guru certainly knows if he advocate universal path he only does so for the good of all the jivas, if I am a vegetarian because of my Karuna he certainly is more compensate then I am.


    Lord Krishna also says that those who worship him will go to him but those who worship devas will go to them and so on.
    He further says,
    urdhvam gacchanti sattva-stha
    madhye tisthanti rajasah
    jaghanya-guna-vrtti-stha
    adho gacchanti tamasah
    Those situated in the mode of goodness gradually go upward to the higher planets; those in the mode of passion live on the earthly planets; and those in the mode of ignorance go down to the hellish worlds.14.18
     
    Are these facts missed on the Gurus who say all path lead to the same God? No because every destination will reveal new truth until the final destination is reached, I have not heard of gurus saying all religions are same but respect off it all, has been misread by many gullible hindus as they are all the same, that fact can not be ignored and should be corrected.

    I do not know who Frank Morales is, certainly has no right to malign our traditional gurus if I read Saidevo and Atanu correctly.

    Jai Shree Krishna
    Last edited by Ganeshprasad; 26 September 2010 at 02:35 PM.
    Rig Veda list only 33 devas, they are all propitiated, worthy off our worship, all other names of gods are derivative from this 33 originals,
    Bhagvat Gita; Shree Krishna says Chapter 3.11 devan bhavayatanena te deva bhavayantu vah parasparam bhavayantah sreyah param avapsyatha Chapter 17.4 yajante sattvika devan yaksa-raksamsi rajasah pretan bhuta-ganams canye yajante tamasa janah
    The world disappears in him. He is the peaceful, the good, the one without a second.

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