Do all Religions Lead to the Same Place
When I've decided to study religion and spirituality a few years ago, the idea was not to become a preacher, but to enhance my knowledge and understanding of religion as a whole, because, a person's religious belief affects almost everything he/she does throughout his/her entire life. On top of that, there are too many confusions about which doctrine is right and which one is wrong, and more importantly, if all religions lead to the same place? (God).
First, I have to say, despite all churches one may have noticed across the globe, there are only five major religious tendencies in the whole world known as; Christianity with an estimate of 2.2 billion adherents or 31% of the world's population, Buddhism with a total of 535 million adherents or 7.2% of the world's population.
Islam, also known as Muslim with a total of 1.6 billion adherents worldwide or 23% of the world's population. Hinduism has over 1.1 billion adherents worldwide or 15% of the world's population, and Judaism with a total of 14.9 million adherents or 0.20% of the world's population. Below we'll quickly compare and contrast their doctrine and beliefs respectively.
If we analyze the doctrine and beliefs of all five major religions in the world separately, the answer to the question, "Is all religions lead to the same place?" The answer is no.
To better understand that position let’s quickly go over each religion’s beliefs, start with Judaism.
Judaism, for instance, believes in one God who is in one person. They don't believe there's God, the son, and the Holy Spirit, in other words, the Trinity. In fact, according to Judaism, there’s no afterlife, once a person dies, he/she dies and that's it or the end.
For Islam (Muslim), just like Judaism, they believe in one God. However, they believe that there’s an afterlife. Meaning, after a person dies, through grace he/she returns to live with Allah (God).
For Christianity, things are a little different. According to this religion’s concept or ideology (Belief), there’s only one God. However, they believe that God has three distinct personages that form the "Trinity" known as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost.
Just like Islam, Christians also believe that there’s an afterlife. This means; after a person dies, according to his/her deeds, he/she may return to live with his/her creator, in other words, God.
Hinduism, on the other hand, doesn't believe in one God but many gods. They don’t believe in an afterlife neither. However, they believe in reincarnation. For them, men’s destination is to attend the state of Nirvana.
For Buddhism, the concept of God is totally irrelevant, just like Hinduism, their ultimate goal is to seek the state of "Nirvana". However, they don’t believe in reincarnation or any form of afterlife.
With that says, based on the five different views/doctrines or beliefs of these religions, it is clear that not all religions lead to the same place. Which, in turn, affects how believers of each of these religious tendencies view the world, people around them, and life in general. As a result, these religions can't produce the same ethical results due to the fact that most of them have a different view on the basis of life's purpose and God, therefore, their views on what is right or wrong in term of religion is also a little different from one another.
Argosy University (2015). Ethics Across Cultures, 1st Edition. Critical Thinking and Moral Reasoning. Data Retrieved on 07/25/2015, from: https://digitalbookshelf.argosy.edu/#/books/007-7376293/pages/48418937?return=/books/007-7376293/outline/7
Keith E. Johnson (2015). Do All Paths Lead to the Same Destination? Data Retrieved on 07/25/2015, from: http://www.leaderu.com/wri/articles/paths.html