Living Biographies of Religious Leaders
(Fully Illustrated eBook Edition)
by Henry and Dana Lee Thomas
Order in Adobe PDF eBook or printed form for $9.95 (+ printing charge)
This superbly written and absorbing book presents the lives of twenty great founders and leading advocates of the world's foremost religions. Here are the historical facts and legends associated with these forceful personalities who have inspired and influenced humankind through the centuries.
The Thomases, who have written collaborate biographies on famous philosophers and composers here tell us their view of 20 influential religious leaders. The well known, such as Moses, Jesus, Buddha, and Mohammed, are here, as well as the not-so-well known, such as Swedenborg, Brigham Young, and Mary Baker Eddy. The authors seem to imply the existence of a higher being and see in the religious impulse a common spring for all faiths.
In the telling of these vivid and fascinating life stories, the authors have also simply and clearly outlined the principal teachings of each of the great religions. The book will give greater significance to the reader's own faith and a better understanding of the faith of others.
The great religious leaders whose lives and tenets are presented here are: Jesus Christ, Moses, Isaiah, Zoroaster, Buddha, Confucius, John the Baptist, Paul, Mohammad, Francis of Assisi, John Huss, Luther, Loyola, Calvin, George Fox, Swedenborg, Wesley, Brigham Young, Mary Baker Eddy, and Gandhi.
THE GREAT RELIGIONS are upward paths to God. Not to different Gods, but to the selfsame God under different names. In the study of the supreme religious leaders of the world it is heartening to note how many are the points on which they agree, how few the points on which they differ. However they may vary in the prescription of their services, they are all alike in their devotion to service. "So many ways that wind and wind" to the simple creed of being kind. It is of the utmost significance that the founders of all the great religions, drawing their inspiration obviously from a single source of light, have based their philosophy upon an identical foundation of faith and hope and love.
Faith. All the religious leaders, however separated by time and space, have arrived at the same conviction that there is a divine purpose in life. They believe in the justice of God and in the goodness of man. With all his faults, every man "carries heaven in his heart." He is born with a definite instinct—an instinct which the prophet endeavors to translate into a dynamic urge—to make himself useful to his fellowmen. For every living creature is an essential note in the universal symphony of life. And this symphony is created and directed by an all-purposeful and all-merciful design.
Hope. In this purposeful and merciful design of God—agree the prophets—the individual human soul is embarked upon a divine journey. The earth is the borderland of the heavens. Our present life is a transition from a dead past to a deathless future. "Man is born upon earth in order that he may become an angel in heaven." All suffering is but a learning for future happiness. And this future happiness is reserved for each and every one of us. This is the good news—the prophets insist that this is the true news—that all the great religions bring to mankind. All the prophets alike subscribe to this hope that "good shall fall at last—far off—at last, to all."
Love. The motif that binds the symphony of faith into a unit of hope is love. "Where love is, there God is." All the great religions agree that love—call it sympathy or friendship, if you prefer—is the joyous call of comrade to comrade upon man's universal journey to the divine. All men are brothers, because God is the Father of Love. It is as simple as all that—and as profound. For love is light; light is wisdom; wisdom is power; power is life; life is beauty; beauty is harmony; harmony is love. And this love-in-all-things and all-things-in-love is God.