Saturday, April 7, 2012

Drinking into One Principle of Love: Islam and Mormonism

A couple of days ago at the symposium of the Wheatly Institution at BYU "Empowering Moderate Islam" Dr. Douglas M. Johnson distributed an important flyer with this introduction:
"In November of 2004, H.M. King Abdullah Il bin Al-Hussein of Jordan issued the Amman Message (  to 'declare what Islam is and what it is not, and what actions represent it and what actions do not,' and to clarify to the modern world the true nature of Islam and and the nature of true Islam.'" (

Johnson continues, "In 2010, following his work on the Amman Message, King Abdullah approached the United Nations with the idea of creating a World Interfaith Harmony Week ( Quoting the associated website:

'The World Interfaith Harmony Week, like all the previous endeavors of HM King Abdullah, is not a call to water down one’s faith, but rather it’s a call to respect our differences and personal beliefs and to unite around the basic principles that people of all beliefs agree upon and to understand that harmony can only come if we build upon a solid foundation of dialogue that has “Love of God and love of the neighbor or, love of Good and love of the neighbor” as its core principle for engagement.'"

The solid foundation of dialogue and the core principle for engagement of The Good Report is the same, love of God and love of neighbor. It finds eloquent expression in the words of the Prophet Joseph Smith:

“The inquiry is frequently made of me, 'Wherein do you differ from others in your religious views?' In reality and essence we do not differ so far in our religious views, but that we could all drink into one principle of love. One of the grand fundamental principles of ‘Mormonism’ is to receive truth, let it come from whence it may.” Joseph Smith, quoted in History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2nded. (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1949), 5:499.

On another occasion Joseph Smith also taught that "Friendship is one of the grand fundamental principles of 'Mormonism'; [it is designed] to revolutionize and civilize the world, and cause wars and contentions to cease and men to become friends and brothers" (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 316).

With these principles in mind, I hope to engage not only the great religious traditions of the world, such as Islam, Judaism and Christianity, but also to engage the great literary and philosophical traditions of the world. The purpose of The Good Report is to discover and publish the good that I find in this journey and to invite others to do likewise.

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