Radhanath Swamy – Deity Worship in World Traditions

When we go to the church, there is generally always a crucifix with Lord Jesus Christ. Everyone kneels down in front of him and cry and pray. He is a deity. They are focusing their attention on him. One of the greatest of the Catholic saints, St. Francis of the Assisi, his spiritual life really began when he went to a church in a helpless destitute position and prayed to the deity of Christ. He saw the deity cry and then he heard the deity speak and give him an instruction to surrender.

In Islam, they have big mosques and there is nothing in the mosques. But they are all bowing down in the direction of Mecca. That is their deity. Mecca is a place; it is not just an imaginary concept. They are concentrating their minds on something physical, offering their respects and their worships to something physical. They also worship Quran.

In the Jewish faith also they have some sort of deity worship. One time I was in Jerusalem for one of their biggest festivals. It is festival where they take out Torah, their holy books, and they were offering crown to it.

The Sikhs, too, worship their holy book Guru Granth Sahib. Their book is their deity.

By Radhanath Swamy