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Counteracting religious hatred, animosity and intolerance

Overview: Positive quotes on how to treat others.
Quotations condemning and promoting
religious rejection, hatred and violence:

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Some positive quotations on how to treat others:

Almost all religions contain a Theory of Reciprocity (a.k.a. the Golden Rule) which teaches their members how to treat other people. examples are:

The Golden Rule covers one's behavior towards other people. It is not unique to Judaism and Christianity. It is found in most or all major religions:

bullet Buddhism"Hurt not others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful." Udana-Varga 5:18

bullet Christianity: "Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them." Matthew 7:12, Holy Bible.

bullet Hinduism"One should not behave towards others in a way which is disagreeable to oneself." Mencius Vii.A.4 

bullet Islam: "Not one of you is a believer until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself" Muhammad, Fourth Hadith of an-Nawawi 13.

bullet Judaism: "...thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.", Leviticus 19:18

bullet Native American Spirituality: "All things are our relatives; what we do to everything, we do to ourselves. All is really One." Black Elk

Similar statements from many other religions.

More quotes advocating religious tolerance.

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Some quotations condemning religious rejection, hatred and violence:

bullet "...Time and again we see leaders and members of religions incite aggression, fanaticism, hate and xenophobia - even inspire and legitimize violent and bloody conflicts." Excerpt from the Preamble of the "Declaration of the Religions for a Global Ethic" 1

bullet "Once started, religious strife has a tendency to go on and on -- to become permanent feuds. Today we see such intractable inter-religious wars in Northern Ireland, between Jews and Muslims and Christians in Palestine, Hindus and Muslims in South Asia and in many other places. Attempts to bring about peace have failed again and again. Always the extremist elements invoking past injustices, imagined or real, will succeed in torpedoing the peace efforts and bringing about another bout of hostility." Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Prime Minister of Malaysia, addressing the World Evangelical Fellowship on 2001-MAY-04. 2

bullet "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction." Blaise Pascal 3

bullet "..sometimes religion motivates violence, and sometimes it is used, even manipulated, to justify violence. There also is violence unrelated to religion that gets religiously charged because the conflicting parties happen to be of different faiths." Rev. Shanta Premawardhana, Interfaith Relations Director for the National Council of Churches USA 5

bullet "The idea that a country or a people could somehow be ordained by heaven to commit unspeakable acts in God's name is insane. Unfortunately, history is full of inhuman acts by religious leaders in the name of their dogma or holy war." Zain Winter. 6

bullet "All religion isn't good. That's what we need to understand," Retired bishop John S. Spong. 7

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Some quotations promoting religious rejection, hatred and violence:

bullet "You say you're supposed to be nice to the Episcopalians and the Presbyterians and the Methodists and this, that, and the other thing.  Nonsense. I don't have to be nice to the spirit of the Antichrist.  I can love the people who hold false opinions but I don't have to be nice to them,"  Pat Robertson, Fundamentalist Christian tele-minister. 4

bullet "No, I don't know that Atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered as patriots. This is one nation under God." George H.W. Bush, as presidential nominee for the Republican party; 1987-AUG-27. 1

More quotes on religious intolerance.

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Reference used:

The following information sources was used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. Hans Küng, "Explanatory remarks concerning a 'Declaration of the Religions for a Global Ethic,' " The essay includes the declaration itself. See: 
  2. Mark Juergensmeyer, "Terror in the mind of God: The global rise in religious violence," University of California Press, (2000). Read reviews and/or order this book
  3. This quote is often attributed to Sam J. Ervin, Jr., in "Protecting the Constitution" (1984).
  4. Pat Robertson, a Fundamentalist Christian minister, on The 700 Club, 1991-JAN-14.
  5. "July 12 'Religion-Related Violence' Workshop to Inform Sept. 11 Dialogue in NYC," National Council of Churches USA, 2004-JUL-8, at:
  6. Zain Winter, "There are no chosen people and no chosen religions," at:
  7. Preamble to the 360 Vision program, Vision TV, 2006-SEP-07

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Copyright © 2000 to 2011 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2000-JUN-4
Latest update: 2011-OCT-22, one day after the world was supposed to blow up, but didn't.
Author: B.A. Robinson

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