If Christianity were like Hinduism there would have been no Inquisition. The Cathars would have been accepted as non-Orthodox Christians and not exterminated. People would have been free to publish books saying that the earth went round the sun. The response to Heretics would be to argue against them rather than execute them. Even the extreme who reversed the rules of faith and held black mass would only be fought with words.
If Christianity were like Hinduism then everyone would accept that Mormons and Jehovas Witnesses were fellow Christians. The response to Waco would have been what had made someone’s Christian belief go so wrong, not to deny that they were Christians.
If Christianity were like Hinduism then Christians would see continuity with the Jewish faith, Kabbalists and Jews would be seen as traditional and mystic branches of the religion. Christians would acknowledge the link with Mithras and with Greep philosophy and feel pride in their long heritage and how their faith evolved.
If Christianity were like Hinduism and Islam were like the beliefs that sprung from Hinduism, then the only conflicts with Muslims would be over land and politics. Religion would be a healing rather than a dividing factor. The biggest religious disagreement would be that some Christians would say they were an unorthodox branch of Christianity whereas they would prefer to think of themselves as a separate religion.
If Christians were like Hindus they would celebrate the different faiths in the world, not demonise them. They would hold their faith firm but take interest in other beliefs. They would be concerned about their own spiritual progress, rather than thinking that they were saved and it was a done deal. They would offer their teachings to those who wanted to learn, but not force them on those who took no interest.
Many Christians are extremely insulting about Hinduism and other religions. They call us ignorant, dumb, followers of Satan and mock our beliefs and practices. They tell converts that they should not associate with non-Christians, and sometimes even incite violence, trickery, deception, and destruction of shrines. You only have to look at some of the comments by Christians on this blog to see the degrees of hatred. These Christians honestly believe that this is what their religion teaches.
In contrast, many Hindus believe that Jesus was a guru, and that his teachings do not incite this type of behaviour. I have looked at the teachings of Jesus and I have come to the conclusion that many Christians have misunderstood the real meaning of the teachings of Jesus. In short, what the many missionaries teach is not in accord with the true teachings of Jesus.
Jesus as a Guru
If Jesus is seen as a guru, and the gospels as the teachings of Jesus become clear. When Jesus says to Thomas In John 14:6-7
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.
This is an explanation of the Guru student relationship. Many gurus would say the same thing to their students, but this would not exclude the possibility of other gurus. Many sayings that are taken as instructions to be exclusive and divisive by the Christian Right are in reality simply instructions to keep firm to the guru-shishya relationship.
Jesus’s words on Other Faiths
From the way that many modern Christians behave you would expect Jesus to be full of condemnation, insults, and irreverence for the Roman and Greek gods. In fact, Jesus never said anything negative about these beliefs. Having queried this on a Christian board someone eventually came up with two passages from Jesus: Continue reading