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Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Universal Archetypes Applied to Religion

by Charles Feldman (Prana)

Political tendencies may support liberty (the libertarians), equality (the communists) and solidarity (the reactionaries). Most religions contain all three of these archetypal values. 

The Dharmic religions seek the ultimate liberty in freedom from the finite, or living with God eternally, while the Semitic religions preach free will to accept or reject God's scripture, which leads to the freedom of eternal heaven if accepted. The Buddha preached liberty when he said we should each be lamps unto ourselves.
Most of the Semitic and Dharmic religions believe that we are all equal in the eyes of God, or that we all have the same divinity within us, or that we can all attain to the same state that the Buddha attained. Some religions do not adhere to equality, such as the Calvinists who preach that we are all predestined at birth to go to either heaven or hell, or white racists or the Black Muslims, who believe one race is innately superior to another.

All religions preach solidarity or loyalty. The Semitic religions preach loyalty to a scripture, or in the Catholic case, to the Pope, while the Dharmic religions preach loyalty to the Guru. Excessive demands for loyalty can turn into exclusivism, negating equality in practice.

Thus, liberty, equality and solidarity are the three archetypal values not only in politics, but in religion  too. They may be weighted differently in different religions, but they are all there in most cases.

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