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Date: April 6, 2002 -  Charlottesville, Virginia
Readings: Rabiah Lily O’Cearnaigh
SUBJECT:  Practical Spirituality.

Hindu Religion:

“The Bhagavad Gita”, Chapter 6, v 16-19.
“Arjuna, those who eat too much or eat too little, who sleep too much or sleep too little, will not succeed in meditation.  But those who are temperate in eating and sleeping, work and recreation, will come to the end of sorrow through meditation.  Through constant effort they learn to withdraw the mind from selfish cravings and absorb it in the Self.  Thus they attain the state of union.”

Buddhist Religion:

“Opening the Eye of New Awareness”, by Tensin Gyatso, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama
“All beings are equal in that they want happiness and do not want suffering.  This does not apply merely to us humans of higher intelligence; all, even dumb and obscure creatures, from the tiniest insect on up, only want happiness and do not want even a little suffering.  Therefore, everyone, ourselves and others, must find a method to cause happiness to arise and to keep suffering from arising.  Without such a method, it is impossible for happiness to arise and for suffering to be eliminated merely by waiting with the great hope, “How nice it would be if I had happiness and did not have suffering!”  Consequently, we must establish the causes from which happiness arises and abandon the bases of the arising of suffering.”

Zoroastrian Religion:

The Hymns of Zarathustra, Yasna 33.
“Towards the wicked man and the righteous one
And him in whom right and wrong meet
Shall the judge act in upright manner,
According to the laws of the present existence.

He who by word or thought or hands
Works evil to the wicked one,
Or he who converts his clansman to the good,
They please the Lord and fulfill his will.

He who, belonging to family or village or tribe, O Lord,
Is most good to the righteous man, or labours for the care of the herd,
He shall be in the pasture of Righteousness and of Good Mind.”

Jewish Religion:

Deuteronomy 15, 7-12.
“But if there are any poor people in your towns when you arrive in the land the Lord your God is giving you, do not be hard-hearted or tightfisted toward them.  Instead, be generous and lend them whatever they need.  Do not be mean-spirited and refuse someone a loan because the year of release is close at hand.  If you refuse to make the loan and the needy person cries out to the Lord, you will be considered guilty of sin.  Give freely without begrudging it, and the Lord your God will bless you in everything you do. There will always be some among you who are poor.  That is why I am commanding you to share your resources freely with the poor and with other Israelites in need.”

Christian Religion:

Matthew 7, 1-6.
“Do not judge so that you will not be judged.  For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.  Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?  Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye’, and behold, the log is in your own eye?  You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.”

The Religion of Islam:

“The Noble Qur’an”18: 24.
“Never say about anything, ‘I am doing that tomorrow,’ without adding ‘If Allah wills.’  Remember your Lord when you forget, and say, ‘Hopefully my Lord will guide me to something closer to right guidance than this.’”

All other Religions:

From “The Sufi Message of Hazrat Inayat Khan”, The Unity of Religious Ideals:  The God-ideal
“God and the God-ideal may be explained as the sun and the light.  As there are times when the sun becomes covered by clouds, so there are times when the God-ideal becomes covered by materialism.  But if for a moment the cloud covers the sun, that does not mean that the sun is lost; and so the God-ideal may seem to have disappeared in the reign of materialism, yet God is there just the same.  The condition of the world is like the ever rising and falling of waves.  Sometimes it seems to rise and sometimes to fall, but as with every rising and falling wave the sea is the same, so, with all its changes, life is the same.”