Religion Quotes

For it is the chief characteristic of the religion of science that it works, and that such curses as that of Aporat's are really deadly.

Isaac Asimov

Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, conquered the Kalingas eight years after his coronation. One hundred and fifty thousand were deported, one hundred thousand were killed and many more died (from other causes). After the Kalingas had been conquered, Beloved-of-the-Gods came to feel a strong inclination towards the Dhamma, a love for the Dhamma and for instruction in Dhamma. Now Beloved-of-the-Gods feels deep remorse for having conquered the Kalingas. Indeed, Beloved-of-the-Gods is deeply pained by the killing, dying and deportation that take place when an unconquered country is conquered. But Beloved-of-the-Gods is pained even more by this that Brahmins, ascetics, and householders of different religions who live in those countries, and who are respectful to superiors, to mother and father, to elders, and who behave properly and have strong loyalty towards friends, acquaintances, companions, relatives, servants and employees that they are injured, killed or separated from their loved ones. Even those who are not affected (by all this) suffer when they see friends, acquaintances, companions and relatives affected. These misfortunes befall all (as a result of war), and this pains Beloved-of-the-Gods. There is no country, except among the Greeks, where these two groups, Brahmins and ascetics, are not found, and there is no country where people are not devoted to one or another religion. Therefore the killing, death or deportation of a hundredth, or even a thousandth part of those who died during the conquest of Kalinga now pains Beloved-of-the-Gods. Now Beloved-of-the-Gods thinks that even those who do wrong should be forgiven where forgiveness is possible.

Ashoka the Great

Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, honors both ascetics and the householders of all religions, and he honors them with gifts and honors of various kinds. But Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, does not value gifts and honors as much as he values this that there should be growth in the essentials of all religions. Growth in essentials can be done in different ways, but all of them have as their root restraint in speech, that is, not praising one's own religion, or condemning the religion of others without good cause. And if there is cause for criticism, it should be done in a mild way. But it is better to honor other religions for this reason. By so doing, one's own religion benefits, and so do other religions, while doing otherwise harms one's own religion and the religions of others. Whoever praises his own religion, due to excessive devotion, and condemns others with the thought "Let me glorify my own religion," only harms his own religion. Therefore contact (between religions) is good. One should listen to and respect the doctrines professed by others. Beloved-of-the-Gods, King Piyadasi, desires that all should be well-learned in the good doctrines of other religions.

Ashoka the Great

Sufferings predispose the mind to devotion, and nearly all young girls, impelled by instinctive tenderness, are inclined to mysticism, the deepest aspect of religion.

Honor de Balzac

Christianity has operated with an unmitigated arrogance and cruelty necessarily, since a religion ordinarily imposes on those who have discovered the true faith the spiritual duty of liberating the infidels.

James Baldwin

A person came to make him a visit whilst he was sitting one day with a lady of his family, who retired upon that to another part of the room with her work, and seemed not to attend to the conversation between the Earl and the other person, which turned soon into some dispute upon subjects of religion; after a good deal of that sort of talk, the Earl said at last, "People differ in their discourse and profession about these matters, but men of sense are really but of one religion." Upon which says the lady of a sudden, "Pray, my lord, what religion is that which men of sense agree in?" "Madam," says the Earl, "men of sense never tell it."

Anthony Ashley Cooper, 1st Earl of Shaftesbury

I will dwell a little longer on his character; for it was of a very extraordinary composition. He began to make a considerable figure very early. ... He had a wonderful faculty in speaking to a popular assembly, and could mix both the facetious and the serious way of arguing very agreeably. He had a particular talent to make others trust to his judgment, and depend on it: and he brought over so many to a submission to his opinion, that I never knew any man equal to him in the art of governing parties, and of making himself the head of them. He was, as to religion, a deist at best.

Anthony Ashley Cooper, 1st Earl of Shaftesbury

If the Bible is only human lore, and not divine truth, then we have no real answer to those who say, "Let's pick the best out of all religions and blend it all into Pan-Deism - one world religion with one god made out of many".

J. Sidlow Baxter

There is no longer any religion when there is no longer any privileged religion. Take from religion its exclusive power and it will no longer exist.

Bruno Bauer

One's religion is whatever he is most interested in, and yours is Success.

Sir James Matthew Barrie

It is not the profession of religion which creates the obligation for the performance of duty; for that existed before any such profession was made. The profession of religion only recognises the obligation.

Albert Barnes

As the government of the United States is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion, as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion or tranquility of Musselmen and as the said States never have entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.

Joel Barlow

It was manifest that all persons who had learned that political science is an affair of conscience rather than of might or expediency, must regard their adversaries as men without principle, that the controversy between them would perpetually involve morality, and could not be governed by the plea of good intentions which softens down the asperities of religious strife. Nearly all the greatest men of the seventeenth century repudiated the innovation. In the eighteenth, the two ideas of Grotius, that there are certain political truths by which every state and every interest must stand or fall, and that society is knit together by a series of real and hypothetical contracts, became, in other hands, the lever that displaced the world. When, by what seemed the operation of an irresistible and constant law, royalty had prevailed over all enemies and all competitors, it became a religion. Its ancient rivals, the baron and the prelate, figured as supporters by its side.

John Dalberg-Acton, Lord Acton

The French philosopher Charron was one of the men least demoralised by party spirit, and least blinded by zeal for a cause. In a passage almost literally taken from St. Thomas, he describes our subordination under the law of nature, to which all legislation must conform; and he ascertains it not by the light of revealed religion, but by the voice of universal reason, through which God enlightens the consciences of men. Upon this foundation Grotius drew the lines of real political science. In gathering the materials of International law, he had to go beyond national treaties and denominational interests, for a principle embracing all mankind. The principles of law must stand, he said, even if we suppose that there is no God. By these inaccurate terms he meant that they must be found independently of Revelation. From that time it became possible to make politics a matter of principle and of conscience, so that men and nations differing in all other things could live in peace together, under the sanctions of a common law.

John Dalberg-Acton, Lord Acton

Liberty, next to religion has been the motive of good deeds and the common pretext of crime...

John Dalberg-Acton, Lord Acton

The inflexible integrity of the moral code is, to me, the secret of the authority, the dignity, the utility of History. If we may debase the currency for the sake of genius, or success, or rank, or reputation, we may debase it for the sake of a mans influence, of his religion, of his party, of the good cause which prospers by his credit and suffers by his disgrace. Then History ceases to be a science, an arbiter of controversy, a guide of the Wanderer, the upholder of that moral standard which the powers of earth and religion itself tend constantly to depress. It serves where it ought to reign; and it serves the worst cause better than the purest.

John Dalberg-Acton, Lord Acton

Even a little knowledge of Islam will show that its religion is not only tolerant of other Faiths, but most respectful, and indeed, fully accepts the divine inspiration of all theistic Faiths that came before Islam.

Aga Khan III

Islam is fundamentally in its very nature a natural religion.

Aga Khan III

Allah says [in the Koran]: "If they repent before you overcome them, you should know that Allah is forgiving and merciful."...we are opening the door of forgiveness[...] and acceptance of Islamic law, to all who have strayed and committed a crime in the name of religion...Everyone who belongs to this group that has wronged itself who has not yet been apprehended in terrorist operations we offer them a chance to return to Allah...Anyone who accepts this and surrenders of his own free will...will be treated according to the law of Allah.

Abdullah of Saudi Arabia

The child has talent, loves music, and needs help. I can't give her money, but I can teach her; so I do, and she is the most promising pupil I have. Help one another, is part of the religion of our sisterhood, Fan.

Alcott, Louisa May

It is not the religious beliefs, whether right or wrong, which are opposed to culture and material progress, but that belief which prohibits learning of sciences, earning one's livelihood and the ways of culture. I do not believe that there is any religion in the world which opposes these things. I would rather say that it is non-believing which inevitably leads to disorder and distortion of culture as in the case of the Nihilists.

Al-Afghani, Jamal al-Din

Blessings are for the man who humbles himself before God, whose sources of income are honest, whose inten- tions are always honorable, whose character is noble, whose habits are sober, who gives away in the cause and in the Name of God, the wealth which is lying surplus with him, who controls his tongue from vicious and useless talk, who abstains from oppression, who faithfully follows the traditions of the Holy Prophet and who keeps himself away from innovation in religion.

Ali bin Abu-Talib

No wealth is more useful than intelligence and wisdom; no solitude is more horrible than when people avoid you on account of your vanity and conceit or when you wrongly consider yourself above everybody to confide and consult; no eminence is more exalting than piety; no companion can prove more useful than politeness; no heritage is better than culture; no leader is superior to Divine Guidance; no deal is more profitable than good deeds; no profit is greater than Divine Reward; no abstinence is better than to restrain one's mind from doubts (about religion); no virtue is better than refraining from prohibited deeds; no knowledge is superior to deep thinking and prudence; no worship or prayers are more sacred than fulfillment of obligations and duties, no religious faith is loftier than feeling ashamed of doing wrong and bearing calamities patiently; no eminence is greater than to adopt humbleness; no exaltation is superior to knowledge; nothing is more respectable than forgiveness and forbear- ance; no support and defense are stronger than consultation.

Ali bin Abu-Talib

There are many educated people who have ruined their future on account of their ignorance of religion. Their knowledge did not prove of any avail to them.

Ali bin Abu-Talib
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