STEP TEN: Seek tolerance and, when possible accept all religious faiths without judgment.
Instruction: Try to tolerate other religious opinions.
The idea that one particular religion has the only way or best way to connect with The Divine has created major problems in the world including bigotry, religious racism, elitist religious groups, and wars. The strange thing is that some of these religions trace their origins back to the same roots. If one particular religion has a monopoly on finding The Divine—then all the others have to be wrong. Perhaps all are wrong, or maybe all are somewhat right. Perhaps there is only one Divine Presence, and all, or at least most, religions have a measure of understanding as to what that Being is, what it wants, if anything, and how to connect with it. If religions continue to insist there is only one way to connect and worship this Being, then our world will never know peace.
When Step Ten suggests that we accept all religious faiths without judgment, the Step is not saying we accept in the sense of becoming members of any and all religious teachings. That would be exhausting, impractical, fruitless, and a waste of time. What Step Ten is suggesting is that we accept, whenever possible, that there is probably enough good in the majority of religious faiths that we need no longer feel compelled to fight, argue, and win one another over. I often think that for each convert one religion converts from another religious group, they probably lose one of their own to a different religious group. Call it religious karma, “I take one of yours, and you or someone else takes one of mine, and we end up where we started.” The call in Step Ten is for respect, and when we come to a place where we can’t agree, we decide to agree to disagree with mutual love, acceptance, and respect, knowing that ultimately we are members of one global family.
For today, release the religious labels that separate us. Some dress differently than we do because of their religious beliefs. So what? Close your eyes to the difference and open them to the similarities. Look for common ground and respect your fellow seeker.
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