An Insider's Look at Mormon Culture

Posts tagged ‘Inner Light’

Faith: Inward or Outward Directed?

From the point of view of Western religion, faith refers to belief in a divine being. Worship is directed outward to that being, and inspiration comes from that being. Charity is important because it pleases the divine being to have all his creations loved and respected. Lack of faith in a divine being, or the right divine being, is condemned, sometimes harshly as in Romans 14:23, “ . . . whatsoever is not of faith is sin.”

By contrast, Eastern religions seek the divine spark within the human soul. Faith, from an Eastern perspective, is belief in oneself—that one can deal with what cannot be changed in the world. Faith includes belief in and respect for others—that we are all part of a universal whole. Compassion arises because what affects one affects us all.

Personally, the idea of inspiration from the Inner Light has more appeal than inspiration from the Holy Ghost. “Worthiness” (which is usually construed as an arbitrary list of appropriate behavior) is not a criterion for contact with the Inner Light—although a person must free herself of delusions that prevent the light from shining through.

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