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  • Results 1 to 8 of 8
    1. #1

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      This is from a Chinese newspaper.


      Why the East is superior to the West ...
      masterkung Updated: 2004-05-31 10:08

      Within the religious fanaticism you will find a basic lack of understanding of other religions. A comprehensive study of various religions would support the broader view that one supreme and caring Intelligence has expressed itself to different people at different time and in different ways.

      Fanaticism comes to people who feel insecure. This broader view gives a sense of belongingness while still allowing people to be well-founded in their own tradition.

      There are ten major religions in the world, six from the far east and four from the Middle East. In the Far East, Hinduism is the oldest. Then came Buddhism, Jainism, Taoism, Shintoism and Sikhism. From the Middle East, Zoroastrianism is the oldest, and then came Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

      Three of the Middle Eastern religions are rooted in the Old Testament: Islam, Christianity and Judaism. In the Far East Shintoism and Taoism have completely separate sources. Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism have roots in Hinduism.

      The six religions of the Far East have peacefully coexisted and intermingled over the centuries. Buddhism and Taoism have so completely accepted each other that you can find statues of Buddha in Taoist temples. Hinduism accepts Jainist and Buddhist thought.

      Contrarily, the religions of the Middle East with a common root have warred with each other. The brothers of the same house fight while friends live with each other in a coherent manner.

      When I was in Japan I met several Shinto priests and Buddhist monks. They told me a story of travelling with President Bush of America. He asked a Shinto priest what the population of Shintoists in Japan was. The priest said, "Eighty percent." And he asked a Buddhist monk what the percentage of Buddhists was and the monk said, "Eighty percent." President Bush said, "How could that be possible?" And they said, "It is possible! Buddhists go to Buddhist temples and Shinto temples and Shintoists go to Buddhist temples and Shinto temples." In this story, we have a healthy model of cultures maintaining their identity and at the same time interacting with each other.

      And we can find a model in India also. Within one family you will find Jains and Hindus and Sikhs. Individuals are free to choose whatever representation of Divinity they wish. They are not expected to adhere to the choice of the father or mother. This coexistence can happen when we put values first and symbols and practices second.

      The above content represents the view of the author only.

    2. #2


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      Good one !
      Thanks for shareing .

    3. #3


      jazakallah thanks for sharing.

    4. #4


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      I would think from a very conservative eye, that ..
      The reason why alll the six religions can so mingle with each other is because all of them are idol worshiping. All are based on myths.
      A myth can be changed/modified/added .. etc.

      so uhh..
      just by looking at how couple of religions allied with each other ... eastern religions become better ?????

    5. #5


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      Originally posted by al-majid:
      I would think from a very conservative eye, that ..
      The reason why alll the six religions can so mingle with each other is because all of them are idol worshiping. All are based on myths.
      A myth can be changed/modified/added .. etc.

      so uhh..
      just by looking at how couple of religions allied with each other ... eastern religions become better ?????
      dont you think chinese and japanese
      are lucky ? they dont tear themselves apart
      over religen and compare themn with mid-east and southasia.

    6. #6

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      Originally posted by al-majid:
      I would think from a very conservative eye, that ..
      The reason why alll the six religions can so mingle with each other is because all of them are idol worshiping. All are based on myths.
      A myth can be changed/modified/added .. etc.

      so uhh..
      just by looking at how couple of religions allied with each other ... eastern religions become better ?????

      It's just tolerance for other religions, sects etc. Usually country with people of multiple faiths tend to be more tolerant.


      Want to Prosper? Then Be Tolerant
      Paul Johnson, 06.21.04, 12:00 AM ET

      More From Paul Johnson

      In economic activities the greatest of virtues is tolerance. All societies flourish mightily when tolerance is the norm, and our age furnishes many examples of this. China began its astounding commercial and industrial takeoff only when Mao Zedong's odiously intolerant form of communism was scrapped in favor of what might be called totalitarian laissez-faire.

      India is another example. It is the nature of the Hindu religion to be tolerant and, in its own curious way, permissive. Under the socialist regime of Jawaharlal Nehru and his family successors the state was intolerant, restrictive and grotesquely bureaucratic. That has largely changed (though much bureaucracy remains), and the natural tolerance of the Hindu mind-set has replaced quasi-Marxist rigidity.

      In the last fiscal year India's GDP grew an estimated 8%, and in the third quarter, 10%. India's economy for the first time is expanding faster than China's. For years India was the tortoise, China the hare. The race is on, and my money's on India, because freedom--of movement, speech, the media--is always an economic asset.

      When left to themselves, Indians (like the Chinese) always prosper as a community. Take the case of Uganda's Indian population, which was expelled by the horrific dictator Idi Amin and received into the tolerant society of Britain. There are now more millionaires in this group than in any other recent immigrant community in Britain. They are a striking example of how far hard work, strong family bonds and a devotion to education can carry a people who have been stripped of all their worldly assets.

      Common Denominator
      The contrast between China and India--both moving steadily to join the advanced countries of the world--and those countries where Islam is dominant is marked. Whatever its merits may be, Islam is not famed for tolerance. Indeed, of the major world religions it is the least broad-minded and open to argument. With the rise of a new form of fundamentalism in recent decades, its intolerance has been growing--as has the concomitant poverty.

      In the past when an Islamic society has been modified by a strong secular influence, economic progress has been possible. Take Iraq. Until 1958 the British-influenced Nuri as-Said regime, which was comparatively tolerant in its outlook, made good use of the country's oil revenues. The Iraq Development Board was doing an excellent job. Had it been allowed to continue, this enlightened form of capitalist state planning would by now have made Iraq one of the richest countries in the world. Alas, the regime was too tolerant of extremists. In 1958 Nuri as-Said and all his colleagues were murdered by an alliance of Baathist officers and religious fanatics. Since then Iraq's oil revenues have been wasted on war and armaments, and its people brutalized almost beyond belief.

      The tale in Iran is similar. Under the secular regime of the last Shah the economy was going great guns, but then the Shah wasdriven out by the Ayatollah Khomeini and his zealots. Some Iranians believed the modernizing and industrialization were happening too fast. But at least Iran had been moving forward--incomes had risen and poverty was on the wane. Since the Iranian revolution this great and once highly civilized country has stagnated or gone backward, and all the money generated by its oil has been wasted.

      There are many other examples. Algeria once had a flourishing agricultural sector, a significant industrial sector and highly productive oil and gas fields, but it has little to show for all that now. Libya's Muammar Qaddafi may have come to his senses, but a generation of rich oil production has been wasted. Nigeria, where Islam is on the ascent, has also dissipated its oil wealth. Conditions there are less promising today than when Britain was in charge a half-century ago.

      Saudi Arabia is another country where intolerance has held back economic advance. No nation has received more cash from its natural resources than has this Sunni Muslim state, with its ferocious tradition of Wahhabi fundamentalism. What's happened to the wealth? Gone with the wind of bigotry. Some of the other oil-rich Gulf states have done a little better, but in none of them do enterprise and free-market capitalism flourish.

      As for the less well endowed Islamic states like Pakistan and Bangladesh, it's better to draw a veil over their misery. On the evidence of the second half of the 20th century it would appear that Islamic state control is a formula for continuing poverty, and Islamic fundamentalism a formula for extreme poverty.

      The more I study history, the more I deplore the existence of those--be they clerics, bureaucrats or politicians--who think they know what's best for ordinary people and impose it on them. We have a pungent example of this know-all mentality in the EU. The bureaucrats of Brussels have created yet another brand of intolerance that determines by law everything from the shape of bananas to the number of seats in a bus, from apple growing to house plumbing. As a result the German economy is contracting and the French economy is stagnant. There are now more unemployed people in single-currency EU Europe than there have been at any other time since the worst of the 1930s, and many of them will never work again.

      Let those of us fortunate enough to live in the U.S. or Britain hang on to our traditions of tolerance at all costs, resisting like fury all those who seek to undermine them with political correctness or any other kind of dogma.

      Paul Johnson, eminent British historian and author, Lee Kuan Yew, senior minister of Singapore, and Ernesto Zedillo, Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, former president of Mexico, in addition to Forbes Chairman Caspar W. Weinberger, rotate in writing this column. To see past Current Events columns, visit our Web site at www.forbes.com/currentevents.

    7. #7


      ^ excellent article. Intolerance of other faiths is the bane of places like the middle east. The Saudis are a decade away from having their standard of living resemble pakistan. Intolerant, backward thinking people with a growing underclass of fundamentalist thought. They will be lucky to know how to put the oil in the barrel instead of setting prices. We need to go in there and rescue them from this folly.

    8. #8
      The unReal king
      Bu Abdullah


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      u better worry about how to get gas in ur own part of the world....
      we, here in the arab world, know very well how to deal with oil and its price....

      btw, here in bahrain we have ppl from almost all religions and nationalities and i'd be surprised if someone cud point out any intolerant behavior in the society here....
      Both Halal & Haram r evident but between them r doubtful things, most ppl have no knowledge about them. So whoever saves himself from suspicious things saves his religion & honor, & whoever indulges in suspicious things indulges in Haram.

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