When you learn about different religions, there is a commonality that many of them share. Some individuals want to go to one religous book or another stating they have the ultimate truth and wisdom, however ageless wisdom can be found in all of the reigious doctrines. There is a There is a central figure that seems to serve as inspiration for the beliefs that each of these religions has. In Eastern thought, it is Confucius or the Buddha. In Sufism, it is the prophet Mohammed. Even though Taoism and Gnosticism do not have a central figure to revere their belief in something greater than themselves that started everything in our world, as well as the universe, is something that they intend to in some way connect with or emulate. In Christian thought, our world is a place that is the result of original sin and our goal is to escape the confines of this prison that we have indirectly created. The Buddhists referred to this as Maya, and the life that we live one of suffering that can only be changed by pursuing enlightenment.
It seems that the goal of any religion is to focus upon something that is greater than ourselves, sometimes to the point of achieving some type of salvation. Whether the salvation comes from the efforts of the God of that religion, or a salvation that we can attain by going deep within ourselves, there is always this understanding that there is something greater to reach and obtain. Of course, the cultural context of all of these religions have helped form them, and subsequently, how the believers of these religions perceive their lives and the world around them. It is through the lens of these different religions that people will make choices, and through those choices, continually mold the world around us. If there is one common thread that all of them share it is simply this: a need to find something greater than ourselves. And in the process of finding whatever this is, become something better. In conclusion, all religions have something to offer people. They each perceive the world slightly differently, and through these perceptions, we can pick and choose from the many good things that they have done for humanity. Whether this is giving people something to believe in, or helping them to understand their place in this world, these are all positive benefits that these religions can provide. By having a better understanding of why we are here, what our purpose is, and where we are going, we can live a much more balanced life. It is always good to know that there is something more out there. If we can somehow emulate that greatness, or come closer to it through the choices that we make and the things that we believe, it allows every human being to become a much better person and ultimately find balance within their lives.