How do various religious leaders understand God?

Category: Faith & Spirituality, Featured Topics: Interfaith Values: Pluralism

Exploring God through the intimate thoughts and beliefs of the world's most influential spiritual leaders.

MUSLIM

I see God in the sun that rises and the moon that glows, in the river that runs, in the wide sea and in every human being living his life. I see God in all the manifestations in the universe.

Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah - PROMINENT SHIITE MUSLIM LEADER

SIKH

He has many forms and all forms. He is many and He is One.

Guru in the sacred book states that only people with divine qualities, and the ones with the third eye of wisdom open, can see Him. We cannot see Him with these eyes. Only the eyes of wisdom and awareness can see the beauty of God. Then they are not far from Him, they are very near Him.

He is Waheguru. He is the ultimate, supreme guru. He is known by many names; He has many forms. In the Sikh religion we remember Him by only one mantra and that is Waheguru—supreme guru. Wahe means wonderful, gu means darkness, gu means light.The One who clears the darkness of ignorance through the light of wisdom. The One who leads us from darkness to light, that wonderful form is Waheguru.

Singh Saheb Giani Joginder Singh Vedanti - JATHEDAR SRI AKAL TAKHT, SUPREME SIKH AUTHORITY

CHRISTIAN BAPTIST

God is the center of my being. He is the center of the universe. He is the center of my heart. He came into my heart as a nine-year-old boy, and he lives at the center of my heart now.

Dr. Frank S. Page - PRESIDENT OF THE SOUTHERN BAPTIST CONVENTION

CHRISTIAN LUTHERAN

I don’t think anyone knows God. Moses wanted to see God and God said, no, you can only see my backside; you're not going to see all of me, because if you did you couldn’t live. But then God decided, I will show you enough of me so that you’ll know how much I love you. And that became this one whom we call Jesus. I know God most fully in Jesus.

Bishop Mark S Hanson - PRESIDING BISHOP OF THE EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH IN AMERICA AND PRESIDENT OF THE LUTHERAN WORLD FEDERATION

JAPANESE SHINTO

We believe that each of the blessings of nature is given by many gods and goddesses. I think the way to live according to Shinto beliefs is to be thankful to them and live together with them. Since early times, people have felt and cared about the gods and goddesses dwelling in fire, water, trees, and grass.

Michihisa Kitashirakawa - JINGU DAIGUJI (HIGH PRIEST) or THE SHINTO GRAND SHRINE OF ISE

HINDU

You are my God, this breeze, the ocean, the roar of a lion, the song of a cuckoo bird, all of this is God. Divinity is present everywhere and in everybody, but no one is aware of it. For me, all are divine souls.

Amma (Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi) - HINDU SPIRITUAL LEADER

 

Excerpted from "In God's Name" by Jules Naudet and Gedeon Naudet.


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