The Book of Tolerance
By Dr. Dorit Kedar
The Book of Tolerance is a textual and pictorial extension of
The Book of Inter-religious Peace, published by The Center of Inter-religious Peace in 2013, available on Amazon and Kindle.
The pictorial series and text of The Book of Inter-religious Peace wish to draw an invisible chain, uniting some of the major religions, as if they were inseparable links. This chain, though, can be comprehended and experienced only by viewers who have achieved an ex-territorial state of mind, soul, and spirit, overcoming the illusion of owning the ultimate, absolute, and exclusive truth.
We have chosen religious peripheral orientations based on universal human psychological and spiritual traits, rather than paradoxically dealing with the Nature of The Divine, which by essence is ineffable.
A concise description of the series will help to better understanding of the aims of The Book of Religious Tolerance:
Judaism: The Kabbalah Tree of Life. An attempt to experience The Creator, The One, The Infinite, The Ethereal, as an intrinsic part of creation, multiplicity, the finite, and the mortal.
Christianity: The Legacy of Saint Francis of Assisi. The infinite and awe-inspiring phenomena of Nature are conceived, much like the tradition of Native Americans, as the visible garments of The Divine, creating the necessary gate leading to The Beyond.
Islam: The Wisdom of Sufism. Concentration on the Ineffable One as a daily duty requires a strict discipline of personal and social activities, having in mind the virtue of perfection by maintenance of purity and cleanliness of body, mind, soul, and spirit.
Hinduism: Chakras. The series attempts to depict energetic transformation by a gradual formation of the Inner Temple. The seeker of wisdom builds the temple with bricks of stability, flexibility, endurance, alertness, multi-layered communication, objective sight, and insight in order to re-unite with The One, The Void.
Zen Buddhism: 22 Insights to Stop Time. This series is based on the insights of the Tarot deck and is an attempt to reconcile Far Eastern bequest with Western Hermetic traditions. Both paths aim to free the mind, soul, and spirit from time and space contractions.
Native American Spirit. The Great Spirit or Mystery is part of its creatures, landscape, and all natural phenomena. Thus, the world is a dynamic book, in which words, sentences, and the meaning of everything are made of the occurring within the non-ending stream of time and space.
Africa. This series, composed of animals, birds, and fish, is a personal tribute to the incredibly rich gamut of life’s expression through form, color, sound, and movement.
The Book of Religious Tolerance is composed of 15 pictorial works infused by the Spirit of Tolerance.
We wish to suggest the path of non-violence by making pictorial works, which are intentionally founded on base, simplicity, naturalness, genuineness, and harmony.
Each work has a textual and a pictorial message fusing intellect and imagery.
“The spring breeze:
How white the heron is
Among the pines.”
(S. W. Holmes and C. Horioka, Zen Art For Meditation (Tokyo and North Clarendon, VT: Charles Tuttle, 1989))
Any attempt to define the Non-definable is illusive.
“Dharma is that invincible power of nature which upholds existence. It maintains evolution and forms the very basis of cosmic life…”
(Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, On The Bhagavad Gita (London: Arkana, 1990))
2 ONENESS IN MULTIPLICITY
The Infinite One Creator is mirrored in the infinite phenomena of Nature.
“My heart can take on any form:
A meadow for gazelles, a cloister for monks,
A temple for idols, the Ka’ba for pilgrims,
The tablets of the Torah, the leaves of the Qur’an.
I believe in the religion of love whichever way its caravan turns;
Love is my religion and my faith.”
Ibn’Arabi (12th-13th centuries)
(D. and O. Follmi, Devotions: Wisdom from the Cradle of Civilization (New York: Abrams, 2008)).
3 MULTIPLICITY AS ONENESS
All creatures are co-dwellers on Earth and share its inner structure ,blood, and essence.
“The Mayans say: I am another one of Yourself. In this manner the Mayns stress that every life-form reflects every other life form and that all originate from the same Original Source.”
(J. Sams, Sacred Path Cards: The Discovery of Self through Native Teachings (New York:Harper Collins, 1990))
4 ON SPIRITUALITY
The path of Spirituality teaches to join the incessant Flow of Becoming rather than tell stories about it.
“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is: infinite.”
(S. Mitchel, The Essence of Wisdom: Words from the Masters to Illuminate the Spiritual Path (New York: Broadway Books, 1998)).
5 ON KINDNESS
Kindness is achieved by seeing the others with pure heart, mind, and attitude.
“By Thy perfect Intelligence, O Mazda, Thou didst first create us having bodied and spiritual consciences. And by Thy thought gave ourselves the power of thought, word, and deed. Thus leaving us free to choose our faith at our own will.”
Zoroaster, c. 1000 BC
(“Zoroaster,” Wikiquote, https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Zoroaster)
6 THE INNER TEMPLE
The symbolism of the Hindu chakras, Buddhist Mandala, or the Jewish Tree of Spheres, reflect the path leading from separation up to integration.
“With the perfect synchronization of interior and exterior rhythms, one can follow the path of least resistance and float freely in the ocean of the phenomenal world without getting drowned. To be precise the human body is the most perfect instrument for the perfection of consciousness.”
(H. Johari, Chakras: Energy Centers of Transformation (Montreal: Density Books, 1987))
7 THE SECRET KNOWLEDGE
The secret knowledge is revealed to those who have succeeded to abolish prejudice, judgment, and traditional habits.
“Thirty spokes converge at one hub;
What is not there makes the wheel useful.
Clay is shaped to form a vessel;
What is not there makes the vessel useful.
Doors and windows are cut to form a room;
What is not there makes the room useful.
Therefore, take advantage of what is there,
By making use of what is not.”
(Lao Tzu, The Tao of Power, trans. R. L. Wing (Northamptonshire: Aquarian, 1986))
8 SANCTIFICATION OF LIFE
No human sacrifice, no self-sacrifice, no animal sacrifice, no martyrdom, no fight for God, no punishment in the name of God, and no self-mutilation or abuse for the love of God…
“The existence of the world is thought of as a continuous giving birth by the yoni (vulva) of the female principle resulting from a continuous infusion of the seed of the male, in sexual delight…”
(P. S. Rawson, Tantra: The Indian Cult of Ecstasy (London: Thames and Hudson, 1973))
The teachers of Spirituality have no followers as their apprentices are seekers of wisdom.
“Unimaginable the light in the eye!
Indescribable the ring in the ear!
Incomparable the taste on the tongue!
Immeasurable the peace of the inconceivable
Everywhere you will find Him:
In the tiniest particles of dust,
In the hard wood or a tender blade of dust.
He is everywhere!
The subtle, the imperishable, the unchanging Lord.”
(Swami Mukrananda, Kundalini: The Secret of Life (South Fallsburg, NY: SYDA foundation, 1983))
10 HEAVEN AND HELL
The myths of heaven and hell deal with life after death while actual heaven and earth are part of life.
“Few people believe their inherent mind is Buddha. Most will not take this seriously, and therefore are cramped. They are wrapped up in illusion, cravings, resentments, and other afflictions, all because they love the cave of ignorance.”
(T. Cleary, trans. and ed., Zen Essence: The Science of Freedom (Boston: Shambhala, 1995))
11 LIMITATION OF POWER
Any attempt to counteract the dynamism of Nature causes defeatism, misery, violence, and religious coercion.
“… Therefore, Evolved Individuals
Hold their position without effort,
Practice their philosophy without words,
Are a part of all things and overlook nothing.
They produce but do not possess,
Act without expectation…”
(Extracts from poem 2, “Using Polarity”; Lao Tzu, The Tao of Power)
12 ON SYNCHRONICITY
Inner peace or strife reverberates into Peace or War.
“It is humans that make truth great, not truth that makes human great.”
13 DAILY CELEBRATIONS
Religious ceremonies are linear conduits while daily celebrations are paths of Renewal.
“Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.
Cleverness is mere opinion.
Bewilderment brings intuitive knowledge.”
(T. Freke, The Wisdom of Sufi Sages (London: Journey Editions, 1998))
The wise maintains his fool aspect to keep exploring the world and stay humble.
“The earth is but one country and mankind its citizens.”
(The Bab, The Gate)
15 ON INDEPENDENCE
The more one understands the inter-dependence of Everything, the more independent one is.
“Every soul is independent, none depends on another.”