Jeffrey Moses

Love Thy Neighbor

Sayings from the Religions

Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

Judaism
Leviticus 19:18

A new commandment I give to you, That you
love one another; even as I have loved you ...
By this all men will know that you are my
disciples, if you have love for one another.

Christianity
John 13:34-35

A man obtains a proper rule of action by
looking on his neighbor as himself.

Hinduism
Mahabharata

Full of love for all things in the world, practicing
virtue in order to benefit others, this man alone
is happy.

Buddhism
Dhammapada

Seek to be in harmony with all your neighbors;
live in amity with your brethren.

Confucianism
Shu King 5.17.2

No one is a believer until he loves for his neighbor, and for
his brother, what he loves for himself.

Islam
Hadith

Commentary

In The Gospel of Luke, Jesus is asked, "Who is my neighbor?" This question is just as relevant to us today, in our world made small by modern travel and nearly instantaneous communication.

In reply to this question, Jesus relates the parable of the good Samaritan, who goes out of his way to help an injured man, even though of a different faith. In this parable, Jesus states directly and simply that all people are our neighbors and are worthy of respect and assistance-whether members of our own religion or any other. Just so, in the Hadith sayings of Islam, Mohammed says, "Assist any person oppressed, whether Muslim or non-Muslim." And Vyasa declares in the Bhagavad Gita of Hinduism, "He whose love is alike to friend and foe...that man is dear to Me (God)."

Every human being is born with an innate love for others. As a person matures, this love is put to many tests. But by understanding the teachings of the world’s great religions, a person can find the faith needed for love to endure.

More than a passing glance at the scriptures is necessary to achieve this level of understanding. Acts of faith, prayer, and deep meditation provide us with the strength that allows love for others to become an abiding part of our lives, of our beings. When many of us attain this type of faith, the expression of love in the world will be as spontaneous and natural as love between mother and child.

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