Which Religion is the Right Religion?
Each and every one of them, of course! However, what is "right" for one person may not be the answer for his or her neighbor. Each of us must find our own Truth, be it Wicca, Christianity, Buddhism or one of the myriad other religions born of the human race. You may ask, "How can that be? Only one of them can be the true religion, right?" Perhaps, after reading my personal understanding of the history of the religions of the world, you can answer that question for yourself. Please keep in mind that this is only my opinion; there are many theologians and followers of different religions who would disagree with me, but that's okay. This is my Truth and it really doesn't matter whether others agree with it or not. While it has been quite simplified here, I would like to share it with you.
Over the ages, people in widely scattered countries and villages sensed the Presence of a Supreme Power. In an effort to understand this Presence, each separate people created their own stories and legends about this Being, to try to personalize and relate to what they could not understand. There were no planes for easy transport between continents, no phones, no satellite television - no easy communication. Yet, each people invariably worshipped some form of Creative Power. Villagers who depended on the sea for their livelihood wrote of gods and goddesses whose love and anger was expressed by a good catch or a destructive typhoon. Farmers who depended on the land for their existence told stories of earth deities who controlled fate by either granting good harvest or damaging hailstorms. All over the earth, people related this Power they sensed to what they knew - that their very existence depended upon the whims of nature and the cycle of the seasons. Even if the various tribes had been able to communicate, the sea gods would have meant nothing to those who lived inland, and the gods of the jungle would have been confusing and distant to those who did not have to survive the rigors of the tropical forests.
Various myths about these deities were passed on from father to son, mother to daughter, generation to generation. After decades of tales told around the campfire, these myths gradually ceased to be mere examples of what could be and became, instead, undisputed fact. In an attempt to answer the question of the origin of mankind and, consequently, explain how deity came to be, creation myths abounded. All over the globe, these myths were born - all similar, yet all different.
To me, the One has always been. One Power of which this earth, this solar system, this universe and all the vastness of space are a part. The physical is not separate from the One, but an extension therefrom. The One is both Male and Female, and perhaps contains other attributes as they relate to beings on other worlds. The One is All, and that has limitless possibilities.
I respect the names and the myths surrounding the various aspects of the One. Each name, male or female, and each myth represents a true belief in and reverence of the One, whether by a single person or by millions. Each person's belief - whether I agree with it or not! - demands my respect, for they are expressing their belief for the One (whether or not they themselves acknowledge that possibility). One of the most apt lines I have ever heard spoken is, "All gods are one god, whatever their names." Your god/desses are mine, and mine are yours.
The attributes of positive and negative are balanced within the One. Unlike some other beliefs, which have created "evil" entities to balance out a "righteous" god, I believe that the potential for what we recognize as "good" and "evil" (I personally prefer "positive" and "negative") are both contained within one deity. So, also, is it within ourselves. Each of us has the potential for murder, to lie, cheat, steal and hurt others. The balance of that is the conscience, and the ability to help others, treat them well and help to better their lives. Just as with deity, balance is attained by controlling the first and learning to strengthen the second within ourselves. Acceptance of the existence of the darkness within and finding the balance of that internal polarity is the true goal of every Wiccan.
In light of this, is it acceptable for one religion to claim superiority over another just because certain beliefs or names of deity are different? Religion is the knowledge of the mind, but true spirituality is knowledge of the heart. It is only through honesty and heart-felt spirituality that we can surpass the barriers of belief and come to accept each other for what we truly are - the creations and the children of the One. Does the Name by which we address the One really matter? This is what you must decide for yourself. If you have found your religion but not your spirituality, keep seeking. Your Truth will call to you, and you will KNOW when you have found your spiritual home. Try to keep an open mind, and be loving and accepting of those with differing beliefs. After all, when you get right down to the basics, our beliefs are not all that far apart - are they?
Be Blessed, and Blessed Be!