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Affirming Common Roots

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Affirming Common Roots

When reading the quote from Merton people must remember to keep an open mind when it comes to different beliefs and cultures, this will help to better understand more about them. It also makes for a better world. No matter what others believe we cannot dispute who is right or wrong for we are all GOD's children and live in a diverse world.

When it comes to those who are not of Christian faith, one must be very careful when learning from these people. They can twist words around to where you might think they are with God when actually they are not. In today's world we must be careful when affirming these beliefs even though they too have legal rights just as Christians; however, we all need to do our research, educate ourselves, and ask questions to better understand the differences between all religions.

We learn in the New Testament about the Jewish people, who are GOD's chosen people, we find out that when they were in slavery they wanted to have a better life so GOD showed Moses how to get them out. When looking back into our history we see that people from different cultures were in slavery and they had people like Harriet Tubman who helped those in slavery to get into Canada to be free.

That is what we all want is to be free from not only slavery but also to have religious freedom, that is what Merton is trying to educate us on. When affirming others' beliefs we need to see where they came from and to learn where they are going.

When learning about different religions in the past, I had a great opportunity to go into a Buddhist Temple. This was a great experience for me. I learned that there are five steps of life, you do not shake hands for that offend them, you take your shoes off before entering temple because that is the Buddhist holy ground and one must respect the Buddha. I even learned that when praying to Buddha you have two stoves, one for Buddha to cook the first perfect sacrifice, then once you give to Buddha, you and the family eat. This is very close to the Old Testament when the Jewish would sacrifice their first perfect kill to give praise to GOD for what He has provided to the people of Israel.

When learning about Buddhist and how they believe it really helps me to understand how much we are all alike in some ways. When using an open mind it this will help you understand more about the cultures around us.

Merton was not too far off when speaking about affirming different beliefs. I like how Merton put it "I will find there is not much left in me to affirm as a Catholic, and certainly no breath of the Spirit with to affirm it." These words I will treasure forever.


"Author's Preface to the Japanese Edition" of The Seven Storey Mountain,



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