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Religious tolerance & cooperation

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Two great must-see videos:

A very powerful one minute video by the Anti-Defamation League of what might have happened if there had been less hatred and more tolerance. This video has received about 1.2 million views by 2013-JUL. Only about 7 billion to go:


You Tube PSA video about religious tolerance by SoapBoxQueen:


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Quotes promoting religious tolerance and intolerance:

bullet Anon: "Religious tolerance is not religious indifference. It consists of valuing the right of another person to hold beliefs that you know absolutely, and without a doubt, to be wrong."

bullet Anon: "Religious tolerance means to refrain from discriminating against others who follow a different religious path. Tolerance is more difficult to maintain when you know that your religion is true and their religion is wrong."

bullet Bumper sticker: "Truth, not tolerance." Published by Harbor House Gifts of Fullerton CA. The bumper sticker also shows a clenched fist on the left side and a cross on the right. An interesting combination. It seems to represent religious hatred, conflict, and perhaps even warfare.

bullet Snoopy: "Have you ever thought that you might be wrong?" Proposed title for a book being written by Charlie Brown's dog in the Peanuts comic strip.

bullet Paul Copan: "Contrary to popular definitions, true tolerance means ‘putting up with error’ - not ‘being accepting of all views’... It is because real differences exist between people that tolerance becomes necessary and virtuous." "True for You, But not for Me"

bullet Robert Fleishmann: "When it comes to fundamentally wrong behavior (called "sin" by the Word of God), there is no tolerance. Wrong is wrong!"

bullet Many more quotes are available about religious tolerance and about religious intolerance.


Religious freedom -- being able to hold different religious beliefs, assemble with fellow believers, proselytize others, etc. -- is an important attribute of democracies. However, demanding the right to apply one's religious beliefs in order to denigrate, oppress, harm, and discriminate against others is another matter entirely. Sadly, the latter is the new and growing definition of the term "religious freedom."

Unfortunately, the term "religious tolerance" has more than one meaning.

  1. On this site we define it as allowing followers of other religions to follow their spiritual beliefs without oppression or discrimination. Religious tolerance is a fundamental right in a democracy. Most people believe that religious tolerance, using this definition, is a noble goal, and is vitally necessary for world peace.

    Of course, no right is absolute. Tolerance may not necessarily extend beyond religious beliefs to include some religious actions -- particularly those that harm or harrass others.

  2. Others, particularly conservatives in many religions, describe "religious tolerance" differently. Many define it as accepting all religious faiths as being equally true. This is one meaning of the phrase "religious pluralism." Since religions teach different beliefs, this definition of tolerance implies that absolute truth doesn't exist. Most religious conservatives reject these beliefs, and regard their own faith as the only absolutely true belief system. Thus, many conservatives believe that religious tolerance -- using their definition of the term -- is evil.

We are continually amazed at the differences in definitions of religious terms as used by different faith groups. It makes religious debates and dialogue very difficult. It also makes our work in trying to objectively describe religious beliefs and practices quite challenging.

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Topics covered in this section:

bullet More quotes, overview, and books < < < We suggest that you read this essay first

bullet Religious tolerance compared to anti-racism, etc; what it doesn't involve; what it does involve
bullet Background information: Causes of religious tolerance & intolerance. Opposition to religious tolerance.
bullet Additional information:
bullet Is religious tolerance enough? Examples of intolerance.

bullet Is religious criticism intolerant? Status of tolerance.
bullet Cooperation within and between religions:
bullet Cooperation & conflict motivated by religious diversity in North America

bullet Examples of religious dialogue, outreach, apology & cooperation

bullet Ecumenicalism: The urge to merge within Christianity
bullet Is religious tolerance really religious indifference?
bullet Is it moral to harm an individual in order to prevent a larger harm to society?
bullet About the Bible:
bullet Religious tolerance in the Bible

bullet Religious intolerance in the Bible

bullet Religious exclusivity in the Christian Scriptures (New Testament)
bullet How people react to religious diversity:
bullet Religious exclusivism, pluralism, and inclusivism
bullet A vision of religious diversity and tolerance
bullet Other topics:
bullet Social networking with a religious tolerance theme on facebook; our facebook group

bullet Times and places of religious tolerance in the west

bullet An essay donated by Bilal Cleland "Is religious tolerance a passing phenomenon?" Religious tolerance in the West's past & future

bullet Test your religious tolerance

bullet Cathedral of the Pines from inclusiveness to intolerance and back

bullet Building a mosque a few blocks away from 9/11's "ground zero" in New York City

bullet Center for Religious Freedom's book on religious freedom, worldwide

bullet Books, videos, and web site links:
bullet Books dealing with religious tolerance


A PBS program and some YouTube videos on religious tolerance Part 1 Part 2  Part 3

bullet Internet sites that promote religious tolerance

bullet Internet sites that teach religious tolerance

bullet A "Religious Intolerance Test" has been prepared by Thomas J. Runquist. Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store

bullet "The Comparative Study of Religion" is a blog by Professor Arvind Sharma at McGill University that deals with comparative religion and religious tolerance. See: http://comparativestudyofreligion.wordpress.com/

Related topics on this web site:

You may be interested in viewing the following sections dealing with the opposite of religious tolerance:

bullet Religiously motivated hatred, animosity & intolerance

bullet Religiously motivated oppression, discrimination and conflict

bullet Religiously motivated violence, murder & genocide

References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. "Imagine a world without hate," Anti-Defamation League, at: http://youtu.be/
  2. Soap Box Queen, "Refuse to Setereotype," at: http://youtu.be/

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Copyright © 1998 to 2012 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Latest update and review: 2012-MAR-21
Author: B.A. Robinson

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