HS, p. 65
Belief in one God is the corner-stone of all
religions. But I do not foresee a time when there would be only one religion on earth in practice. In theory, since there is one God, there can be only one religion. But in practice, no two persons I have known have had the same identical conception of God. Therefore, there will perhaps always be different religions answering to different temperaments and climate conditions.
I believe in the fundamental truth of all great
religion of the world. I believe that they are all God-given and I believe that
they were necessary for the people to whom these religions were revealed. And I
believe that if only we could all of us read the scriptures of the different
faiths from the standpoint of the followers of these faiths, we should find that
they were at the bottom all one and were all helpful to one another.
H, 16 Feb.1934
YI, 22 Sept. 1927
Perfection is the exclusive attribute of God and
it is indescribable, untranslatable. I do believe that it is possible for every
human being to become perfect even as God is perfect. It is necessary for all of
us to aspire after perfection, but when that blessed state is attained, it
becomes indescribable, indefinable.
YI, 22 Sept. 1927
If we had attained the full vision of but would no
longer be mere seekers, but would have become one with God, for Truth is God.
But being only seekers we prosecute our quest and are conscious of our
imperfection. And if we are imperfect ourselves, religion as conceived by us
must also be imperfect.
Y M. Chap. X
We have not realized religion in its perfection,
even aw we have not realized thus imperfect, is always subject to a process of
evolution and re-interpretation. Progress towards Truth, towards God is possible
only because of such evolution. And if all faiths outlined by men are imperfect,
the question of comparative merit does not arise.
YM, Chap. X
All faiths constitute a revelation of Truth but
all are imperfect, and liable to error. Reverence for other faiths need not
blind us to their faults. We must be keenly alive to the defects of our own
faith also, yet not leave it on that account, but try to overcome those defects.
Looking at all to religions with an equal eye, we would not only not hesitate,
but would think it our duty, to blend into our faith every acceptable feature of
YM, Chap. X
I came to the conclusion long ago, after prayerful
search and study and discussion with as many people as I could meet, that all
religions were true and also that all had some error in them, and that whilst I
hold by my own, I should hold others as dear as Hinduism, from which it
logically follows that we should hold all as dear as our nearest kith and kin
and that we should make no distinction between them.
YI, 19 Jan. 1928
The one religion is beyond all speech. Imperfect
met put it into such language as they can command, and their words are
interpreted by other men equally imperfect. Whose interpretation is to be held
to be the right one? Everybody is right from his own standpoint, but it is not
impossible that everybody is wrong. Hence the necessity of tolerance, which does
not mean indifference to one's own faith, but a more intelligent and purer love
YM. Chap. X
It is not necessary for toleration that I must
approve of what I tolerate. I heartily dislike drinking, meat-eating and
smoking, but I tolerate these in Hindus, Mahomedans and Christians, even as I
expect them to tolerate my abstinence from all these, although they may dislike
YI, 25 Feb. 1920
YI, 7 May 1925
H, 24 Dec. 1938
For me, politics bereft of religion is absolute
dirt ever to be shunned. Politics concern nations and that which concerns the
welfare of nations must be one of the concerns of a man who is religiously
inclined, in other words a seeker after God and Truth.
YI, 18 June 1925
For me, God and Truth are convertible terms and if
anyone told me that God was a god of untruth of a god of torture I would decline
to worship him. Therefore, in politics also we have to establish the Kingdom of
YI, 18 June 1925
A good Hindu or a good Musalman should be a better
Hindu or a better Musalman for being a lover of his country. There never can be
any conflict between the real interest of one's country and that of one's
religion. Where there appears to be any there is something wrong with one's
religion, i.e., one's morals. True religion means good thought and good conduct.
True patriotism also means good thought and good conduct. To set up a comparison
between two synonymous things is wrong.
YI, 9 Jan. 1930
We the human families are not all philosophers. We
are of the earth very earthy, and we are not satisfied with contemplating the
Invisible God. somehow or other we want something which we can touch, something
which we can see, some does not matter whether it is a book, of an empty stone
building or a stone building inhabited by numerous figures. A Books satisfy some
others, and many others will not be satisfied unless they see something
inhabiting these empty buildings.
H, 23 Jan.1937
It depends on our mental condition whether we gain
something or do not gain something by going to the temples. We have to approach
these temples in a humble and penitent mood. They are so many homes of God. Of
course God resides in every human form, indeed every particle of His creation,
everything that is on this earth. But since we very fallible mortals do not
appreciate the fact that God is every where we impute special sanctity to
temples and think that God resides there.
H, 23 Jan. 1937
When we approach these temples we must cleanse our
bodies, our minds and our hearts and we should enter them in a prayerful mood
and ask God to make us purer men and purer women for having entered their
portals. And if you will take this advice of an old man, these physical
deliverance that you have secures will be a deliverance of the soul.
Bitter experience has taught me that all temples
are not houses of God. They can be habitations of the devil. These places of
worship have no value unless the keeper is a good man of God. Temples, mosques,
churches are what man makes them to be.
YI, 19 May 1927
Auto, p. 242
Churches, mosques and temples which cover so much
hypocrisy and humbug a mockery of God and His worship when one sees the
eternally renewed temple of worship under the vast blue canopy inviting every
one of us to real worship, instead of abusing His name by quarreling in the name
H, 5 March 1942
YI, 20 Dec. 1927
H, 20 April 1934
It is to mind a curse that has come to us and as
long as that curse remains with us, so long as that curse remains with us, so
long I think we are bound to consider that every affliction that we labour under
in this sacred land is a fit and proper punishment for this great and indelible
crime that we are committing.
SW, p. 387
Shall we have not the vision to see that in
suppressing a sixth (or whatever the number) of ourselves, we have depressed
ourselves? No man takes another down a pit without descending into it not the
suppressed that sin. It is the suppressor who has to answer for his crime
against these whom he suppresses.
YI, 29 March 1928
YI, 29 March 1924
Swaraj is a meaningless term, if we desire to keep
a fifth of India under perpetual subjection and deliberately deny to them the fruits of national culture. We are seeking the aid of God in this great purifying movement, but we deny to the most deserving among His creatures the rights of humanity. inhuman ourselves, we may not plead before the throne for deliverance from the inhumanity of others.
YI, May 1921