Monday, February 27, 2012

Dr. Bronner's "All-One!", Is It Really?

We use a number of products from Dr. Bronner's.  They are good soaps without all the garbage large corporate companies feel the need to include in their products.  Back when I had eyes that were young enough to be able to read the small print on the labels (it always reminded me of the times a teacher would allow you to bring in one sheet of notes for an exam and you tried to cram as much on as possible), I was fascinated by the range of theological writings they squeezed on there.  The central idea was that while religious doctrine had long been a source of conflict between people and between peoples, there was a central core to all religion and it was this commonality that disclosed the wisdom, if not the truth of it all.  There seem to be three different claims implicit in the Dr. Bronner's labels:

(1)  There is a common set of fundamental axioms underlying all religions.

(2)  These axioms are (a) true or (b) a foundation for moral, peaceful coexistence.

(3)  The elements outside of this common basis are unimportant or at least of a less important sort than the common features.

Are any or all of these claims true?