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ILLUSTRATIVE SCRIPTURES OF CATHOLICITY
I. We worship the Pure One, the FATHER of Purity. We worship the Omnipresent Spirit, visible and invisible, who is in all that sustains the welfare of the good creation. We praise all good thoughts, all good deeds which are and will be; all that keeps pure, all that is good.
Have the Religions of mankind no common ground? Is there not everywhere the same enrapturing beauty beaming forth from many thousand hidden places? Broad, indeed, is the carpet Our FATHER has spread, and beautiful the colors He has given it. There is but one lamp in His house, in the rays of which, wherever we look, a bright assembly meets us. Our FATHER, whatever road we take joins the highway that leads to Thee.
II. How shall we revere Thee, O FATHER? Shall we love Thee as if we were something of ourselves, or as if we had anything of our own, or as if we belonged to another?
Thou art what we are; Thou art what we do; Thou art all things, and there is nothing which Thou art not. Thou art the Mind that understandeth all things; Thou art the Good that doeth all things; Thou art the One FATHER Who makest all things. -Egyptian Scriptures.
III. May Our FATHER in Heaven be favorable to us? May the Eternal One protect us evermore. We have no other Friend, no other FATHER, than the FATHER of Heaven, who is the FATHER of Men.
The flowers on altars are of many species, but all Worship is one. Systems of faith are different, but there is one FATHER of all. The object of all Religions is alike; all men seek the Object of their Love, and all the world is Love's dwelling. -Brahmanic Scriptures.
IV. The Supreme One is the PARENT of men. He is compassionate and unwearied in blessing. He inspects kingdoms, and makes no mistakes. Clearseeing and intelligent, He dwells with men in all their actions. He is offended with wrong-doing.
The catholic-minded man regards all Religions as embodying the same truths; the narrow-minded man observes only their differences. The good man's purpose is to increase the mercy, charity, truth, kindness, and piety of all mankind. -Chinese Scriptures.
V. I AM THAT I AM. Thus shalt thou say: I Am hath sent me to you! Doubtless Thou art Our FATHER! He shall say unto me: MY FATHER! Wilt Thou not say unto me: My FATHER?
When the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Thy sacrifices are an humble spirit: an humble and a contrite heart, O Our FATHER, Thou wilt not despise. -Jewish Scriptures.
ILLUSTRATIVE SCRIPTURES OF CATHOLICITY
VI. Thou Eternal One, Thou PARENT of All, Thou most Excellent Radiance of Mercy, we take refuge in Thee!
The root of Religion is to reverence one's own faith, and never to revile that of others. He who is beloved of the FATHER honors every form of Religious Faith. -Buddhist Scriptures.
VII. There is One Supreme Intelligence, who acts with order and design; the Source of all that is good and just. He is the Eternal Living Being, the FATHER of men; and the best men He calls His sons.
Great Ruler and FATHER! Thou art called by many names, but art the Omnipotent One. Thou bringest order out of confusion, and guidest all to good. All that exist are Thy offspring; Thou art the FATHER of Mankind; Thou providest for all, the smallest as well as the greatest.
VIII. Amid all the conflict of opinions, there sounds through all the world one consenting law and idea: that there is One FATHER of All. We do not blame the variety of representations; only let men understand there is but One Divine Being; let them love One, and keep One in their thoughts.
The good man remembers that every rational being is his kinsman. The law imprinted on the hearts of all men is to love the members of society as themselves. The eternal, universal, unchangeable law of all beings is: to seek the good of all men, as children of the same FATHER.
IX. Whosoever doeth the will of Our FATHER who is in Heaven, the same is our brother, and our sister, and our mother. Of a truth I perceive that Our FATHER is no respecter of persons; but in every nation he that revereth Him and worketh righteousness is accepted with Him. When ye pray, say: Our FATHER. Thou, FATHER, in us, and we in Thee. We and our FATHER are one. Though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,) to us there is One, even our FATHER, of whom are all things and we in Him. Behold what manner of love our FATHER hath bestowed upon us that we should be called His children. -Christian Scriptures.
X. Thou art the Eternal One, in whom all order is centered. Thou art the Ruler of all things, visible and invisible. Thou art the FATHER of mankind, the Protector of the Universe.
Whatever is thy religion, associate with men of opposite persuasions. If thou canst mix with them freely, and art not the least angered whilst listening to their discourse, thou hast attained peace, and art a master of creation.
To all who, on these pinions, have risen and soared away to the throne of the Highest, all religions express a common Truth-all adore the same Eternal One in their several way and form. -Islam Scriptures.
"IN EVERY BIBLE HE HAS FAITH TO READ,
AND EVERY ALTAR HELPS TO SHAPE HIS CREED."
"Children of men! the unseen Power, whose eye
Hath lookt on no religion scornfully
"Which has not taught weak wills how much they can?
"SEARCH WHERE THOU WILL, AND LET THY WISDOM GO
"The word unto the prophets spoken
"Still floats upon the morning wind,
One accent of the Holy Ghost
"Our FATHER dwelleth not afar, the King of some remoter star-
PERSONAL LETTER OF CATHOLICITY
7 NORHAM GARDENS, OXFORD,
DEAR MR. SCHERMERHORN :
It is always a great satisfaction to see the budding germs of the seed which one has helped to sow. I wish you all success in your endeavors after a Religion of Humanity. Success, to be solid, must not be too rapid. The true religion of the future will be the fulfilment of all the religions of the past-the true Religion of Humanity, that which, in the struggle of history, remains as the indestructible portion of all the sectarian religions of mankind. There never was a false god, nor was there ever really a false religion, unless you call a child a false man. All religions, so far as I know them, had the same purpose; all were links in a chain which connects heaven and earth, and which is held, and always was held, by One Everlasting Hand. All here on earth tends toward right, and truth, and perfection; nothing here on earth can ever be quite right, quite true, quite perfect -Christianity, or what is called Christianity, included-so long as it excludes all other religions, instead of loving and embracing what is good in each. Nothing to my mind can be sadder than reading the sacred books of mankind-and yet nothing more encouraging. They are full of rubbish; but among that rubbish there are old stones which the builders of the true Temple of Humanity will not reject-must not reject, if their Temple is to hold all who worship Him Who is Spirit in spirit and in truth. Believe me, yours truly,
F. MAX MÜLLER.
PERSONAL RECORD OF CATHOLICITY
By maternal ancestry a birthright member of the Religious Society of Friends, and by paternal ancestry of the Holland Reformed and Presbyterian Denominations; from early boyhood a Church member and a constant worker with every accessible religious denomination; alumnus of Williams College, Massachusetts, and of Union Theological Seminary, New York; from student days a resolute non-partisan in Philosophy, Science, Politics, and Religion alike; coworker with every intelligently honest and devout cult or school but refusing to be tied to any party or sect; since the year 1876 a life-member of the American Unitarian Association; during three years pastor of a Presbyterian Church, twelve years rector of Protestant Episcopal Churches, twenty years pastor of Unitarian Churches in New York, Boston, Hartford, and Newport; now honorary expastor of the Channing Memorial Church in Newport; originator and secretary of the first Catholic Congress of World-Religions, held in New York City during January, 1884; compiler and re-translator of Sacred Scriptures of the World, the first Catholic Bible of World-Religions ever published; compiler and author of Hymns and Prayers of Universal Worship, the first Catholic Book of Devotion for World Religions ever published; in fellowship with and an occasional speaker for organizations of World-Religion, such as the Society of Progressive Friends, of Free Religion, of Theosophy, of Vedanta, of Brahmo-Somaj, of Bahai, of New Thought, etc.; from the year 1900 renouncing the "salaried" Ministry and accepting no pecuniary compensations beyond essential expenditures for services rendered; now and during the rest of competent active life devoted to the special work of World-Religion.