The Truth is One
Often when discussing religion, one hears the statement that none has
the right to judge anyone else’s beliefs, or that religion is a person’s
private matter and we can not say that it is wrong or right.
Throughout history, societies have based their laws and ethics upon
“absolute truths” which they deem to be “right”, and this is either a
result of an exterior text regarded as supreme, or of the trait found in
the innate nature of humans that causes them to see certain things as
good and others as evil. Humans, to a limited scale, can see certain
things as good and evil. For example, all humans, left to their natural
state without perversion of the mind, will see feces and urine as
filthy. Also, certain deeds, like stealing, killing and lying are also
known to be evil, while truth, sincerity, and honor are seen to be
lofty. This is a result of a trait that was created in all humans, but
as mentioned above, this sense is limited.
If one says that they do not have the right to judge other’s beliefs or
actions, they are, in fact, contradicting themselves. If you were to
ask many of these people whether killing infants or suicide is correct
and acceptable, they will naturally answer that it is not. But when we
look into certain societies, such as some religions found in Central
America, infanticide was seen to be a way to draw near to their gods.
Also today, in Hindu religion, it is praiseworthy for a wife to kill
herself after the death of her husband. If they truly believe that
religion is something left to the individual and that none have the
right to interfere or judge them, then this would necessitate allowing
that killing babies is something which is correct to those who believe
it is praiseworthy, and that people have no right to judge them.
If we were to bring this issue to an individual level, we would see
that each person has their individual perception of good and evil,
whether this perception is based upon religion, law, culture, or
individual contemplation. One might believe that it is perfectly
acceptable to commit adultery while another might think it to be wrong.
One might believe that it is permissible for them to indulge in
narcotics since it is their own body, and others might believe it to be a
crime. None would be able to say that anything is right or wrong, and
all people would be left to their own devices to believe and practice
what they perceive as “correct.”
If we were to implement this belief in society, we would have a
community based upon anarchy, where no laws could be legislated nor
executed, for law is based upon the principle that certain things are to
be good and others are evil. If one were to say that there are certain
truths agreed to by all humans which can be used to legislate laws,
this statement is true to a certain limit, as we stated that all humans
do naturally have a trait to know right from wrong in a limited sense.
But as seen, this trait many times becomes perverted through
environmental, psychological, or religious factors, in that certain acts
which were at one time seen as evil and immoral are later seen as sound
and acceptable, and some things which do not accord to human nature are
seen to be the keys to salvation. This can be clearly observed in
democratic societies which base their laws on the majority. We see that
many things which were considered to be outright absurd or immoral are
now socially acceptable, to the extent that if one holds a different
opinion in regards to the issue, they are seen as outcasts.
For this reason, humans cannot be left to their own accords to
legislate what is correct and incorrect. Even in societies of the same
religion which have instituted the separation of religion and state,
although they are in agreement to those things which they maintained
from their religion, they differ greatly in regards to what is deemed
correct and incorrect in their societies. What is considered as the
legal age of consent to sex in France is considered rape in America.
While abortion is legal in one country, it is a crime in another, and
when homosexuality is seen as a valid way of life in one society, it is
seen as a grave sin in another.
So if we now say that the truth is absolute and one and is not
relative to each individual and society, then the next question is what
are the morals which make truth manifest and who is to decide them?
What are the laws which should be implemented in society? Should they
be decided by lawyers and judges who have reached a level of “legal
enlightenment”, politicians who usually make decisions for their own
benefit or the benefit of their own countries, or philosophers which
have come to know the universal truths through their own contemplation?
As seen earlier, humans cannot be left to decide these issues, lest
there be catastrophic results, as seen today in many societies ridden
with numerous ills. The only One who has the right to legislate right
and wrong is the One who created us and knows what is best for us, and
that is God Almighty. It is God who created the world and it is God who
set the scales of justice. It is God who is perfect and it is God who
has no faults whatsoever.
Most of our discussion has dealt with the issues of belief which deal
with morality and deeds, but what is even more important is those
beliefs which deal with God, and this will be discussed in the following
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