Sacred Word

A Simple Common Morality Across All Religions

Sacred Word

Words are our most valuable meaning making tool—we think in words, we manifest our thoughts into reality through words, and we share our realities with others through words. How much more powerful, then, are the words of those gods and divine beings who create worlds? Is it too much of a stretch to say that language itself is God, or at least one of God’s attributes? Not for many religions, who frequently equate gods with “the word.” Many prophets were notoriously poor communicators. That the Holy Books, in all their literary beauty and elegance, were supposedly revealed to and recorded by such individuals is seen as further proof that the words could only have come from God, with these human prophets as mere vehicles.

Additional Quotes

The New Testament
Christian scripture

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made."

The New Testament
Christian scripture

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth."

The New Testament
Christian scripture

"For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."

The Hebrew Bible
Jewish scripture

“And the words of the Lord are flawless,

like silver purified in a crucible,

like gold refined seven times.”

Gershom Scholem
Jewish philosopher and historian

"The Torah, in other words, does not consist merely of chapters, phrases and words; rather is it to be regarded as the living incarnation of the divine wisdom which eternally sends out new rays of light. It is not merely the historical law of the Chosen People, although it is that too; it is rather the cosmic law of the Universe, as God’s wisdom conceived it. Each configuration of letters in it, whether it makes sense in human speech or not, symbolizes some aspect of God’s creative power which is active in the universe."

The Zohar
Jewish mystical text

“Now they came forth, these carved, flaming letters

flashing like gold when it dazzles.

Like a craftsman smelting silver and gold:

when he takes them out of the blazing fire

all is bright and pure;

so the letters came forth, pure and bright

from the flowing measure of the spark.

Therefore it is written:

‘The word of YHVH is refined’

(Psalms 18:31),

as silver and gold are refined.”

Adib Taherzadeh
Baha'i leader

“The Word of God is the noblest form of the creation of God and it stands far above the comprehension of man. Bahá'u'lláh has warned us in a Tablet never to compare the creation of the ‘Word’ with the creation of other things. He states that each one of the words of God is like a mirror through which the attributes of God are reflected, and that through the Word of God all creation has come into being. In Islám it is stated that God created the universe through the utterance of one word ‘Be’, which brought into existence all created things. The Revelation of Bahá'u'lláh which is the Word of God for this age is, in like manner, creative. Bahá'u'lláh has, in some of His Tablets, referred to the word 'Be' as the cause of creation.”

The Bhagavad Gita
Hindu scripture

“Entering into every heart, I give the power to remember and understand; it is I again who take that power away. All the scriptures lead to me; I am their author and their wisdom.”

The Upanishads
Hindu scripture

"The word which all the Vedas proclaim,

That which is expressed in every Tapas (penance, austerity, meditation),

That for which they live the life of a Brahmacharin,

Understand that word in its essence: Om! that is the word.

Yes, this syllable is Brahman,

This syllable is the highest.

He who knows that syllable,

Whatever he desires, is his."

The Qur'an
Islamic scripture

"Indeed, it is We who sent down the Qur'an and indeed, We will be its guardian." (15:9)

The Dhammapada
Buddhist scripture

“Though he recites much the Sacred Texts (Tipitaka), but is negligent and does not practise according to the Dhamma, like a cowherd who counts the cattle of others, he has no share in the benefits of the life of a bhikkhu. Though he recites only a little of the Sacred Texts (Tipitaka), but practises according to the Dhamma, eradicating passion, ill will and ignorance, clearly comprehending the Dhamma, with his mind freed from moral defilements and no longer clinging to this world or to the next, he shares the benefits of the life of a bhikkhu (i.e., Magga-phala).”

Confucian philosopher

“Words that speak of things close at hand and carry far-reaching implications – those are the good words.”

The Analects
Confucian Text

“Fine words and an insinuating appearance are seldom associated with true virtue.”

Daoist Text

"True words aren’t beautiful
beautiful words aren’t true
the good aren’t eloquent
the eloquent aren’t good
the wise aren’t learned
the learned aren’t wise"