Spiritual Inquiry

I believe passionately in spiritual inquiry. We should neither accept nor reject any Teaching without investigating it thoroughly. This applies regardless of who uttered the words. Blind acceptance or rejection may be an appropriate reaction for trivial matters, but not for topics as important as religion and spirituality.

Many people profess to believe in religion, and yet scarcely give it a second thought. Surely, if we truly believed that heaven was real, then we would do whatever we could to get there. Would not religion be the most important thing in our lives? Or we might be atheists, not believing in any gods, or anything beyond this material world. Yet even if this were the case, if we had just a shred of doubt, then we should surely investigate it whole-heartedly. Considering the importance of religion, I find it astonishing how many people simply accept the religion of their parents, or of their society, almost without question.

Even for those of us who do explore religion with an open mind, the search is often not for the Truth, but rather for a belief that appeals and is convenient. This is not true inquiry. To be truly open, we must consider every possibility. For example, we must be willing to consider that there is no God, even if we find this thought scary. If we rule out certain possibilities, then we can never be confident in our beliefs, because we will know that we were not open-minded when we formed them.

A spiritual belief is not a statement of what we would like to be true, it is a statement of what is true. It is my firm belief and hope that the two will coincide, maybe the truth is even greater than we dare to hope. Nevertheless, we must always be careful to search for what is, not for what we would like to be. Hence, we must be open to any possibility.

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