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Excerpted from One River, Many Wells by Matthew Fox. Copyright © 2000 by Matthew Fox. Excerpted by permission of Penguin Putnam, Inc.  All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. HTML and web pages copyright © by SpiritSite.com.

"Truth is one; only It is called by different names."

  Matthew Fox, One River, Many Wells, Part 3

Hindu philosopher Ramakrishna writes: "I see people who talk about religion constantly quarreling with one another. Hindus, Mussulmans, Brahmos, Saktas, Vaishnavas, Saivas all quarrel with one another. They haven’t the intelligence to understand that He who is called Krishna is also Siva and the Primal Shakti, and that it is He, again, who is called Jesus and Allah. ‘There is only one Rama and he has a thousand names.’

"Truth is one; only It is called by different names. All people are seeking the same Truth; the variance is due to climate, temperament, and name.... People injure and kill one another, and shed blood, in the name of religion. But this is not good. Everyone is going toward God. They will all realize him if they have sincerity and longing of heart."

Islam, too, is ecumenical in its core: "Islam considers the acceptance of anterior prophets as a necessary article of faith (iman) in Islam itself and asserts quite vigorously the universality of revelation. No other sacred text speaks as mw and as openly of the universality of religion as the Quran. Islam, the last of the religions of the present humanity, here joins with Hinduism, the first and most primordial of existing religions, in envisaging religion in its universal manifestation throughout the cycles of human history." (Seyyed Hossein, Sufi Essays)

Following are some passages from the holy Qur'an apropos of Deep Ecumenism. "Surely, of the Believers, the Jews, the Christians and the Sabians, those who truly believe in Allah and the Last Day and act righteously, shall have their reward with their Lord and no fear shall come upon them nor shall they grieve."

Respect for Moses and the Hebrew Bible as well as for Jesus and Mary is offered in the following passages. "Indeed We gave Moses the Book and caused a number of Messengers to follow after him; and to Jesus son of Mary, we gave manifest Signs and strengthened him with the Spirit of holiness." Again, "We gave Jesus son of Mary clear proofs and strengthened him with the Spirit of holiness."

The Muslim faith is clearly placed within the Jewish and Christian traditions of the prophets and of the Bible in the following passage. "We believe in Allah and in that which has been sent down to us and that which was sent down to Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and his children and that which was given to Moses and Jesus, and that which was given to all other Prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them and to him do we wholly submit ourselves."

Again, "We make no distinction between any of his Messengers; we have heard Allah's command and we have submitted ourselves wholly to him. He has sent down to thee the Book, comprising the truth, which fulfills the revelations that preceded it; and he sent down the Torah and the Gospel before this as a guidance for the people."

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