Mr. HaywardnReplies:nI should like to apologize to Mr.nBryant if he finds my remarks impertinentnor somehow impious. While Inappreciate the spirit of Mr. Bryant’snreply, there is nevertheless much innwhat he says with which I must sharplyndisagree. However, though I did notndeliberately intend to offend anyone, 1nfear that Mr. Bryant is among those whonfind strong judgments of any sortnoffensive.nMr. Bryant writes eloquently of thenneed to nourish one’s inward spiritualnjourney toward God, giving but onenqualification for our love for God: “Allnthat is necessary is that it be sincere.”nNow, sincerity is the modern vktue parnexcellance. It should be noted that thenrise of sincerity as a moral virtue roughlyncorresponds to the decline of respect fornreligious institutions and traditionalnmorality. In the modern world, sincerity,nnot obedience to any moral code ornauthoritative tradition, is held to be thenkey to authentic moral and spiritual life.nHowever, sincerity offers us no moralnguidance or discriminating principlesnwhatsoever. I have not yet heard anyonensuggest that the Ayatollah Khomeini andnhis followers are insincere, but 1 certainlyndon’t feel any “kinship” with thosenparticular lovers of God, and I am surenMr. Bryant would join me in abhorringnthat sort of fenaticism. But if measured bynsincerity, how does Mr. Bryant discriminatenbetween the authentic andinauthentic?nThe problem is inherent in thenmodem approach to religion that stressesntechnique over substance. The entirenspectrum of “self-realization” teachings,nwhether Krishnamurti, the Bagwan, ornParamahansa Yogananda, is extremelynambiguous and gives off a faint whiff ofngnosticism. What is the cause of evil innMr. Hayward is associate editor of thenClaremont Review of Books.nthe world? We’re never quite toldnexplicitly, but it has something to donwith our lack of proper meditation, ournneglect of our “infinite potential,” ourn”inward journey toward perfection,” ourn”oneness with God.” Only insincerity isnoriginal sin.nWhen wretched from context andntransplanted in the West, Eastern religionsntake on a strange form. No longernbound up with the indigenous culture.nEastern religion becomes technique andnseeks to absorb elements of Westernnthought.’In addition to homogenizingnother major religions—which havencontradictory and mutually exclusivendoctrines—Self-Realization thoughtnadopts Cartesian dualism in a particularlynmilitant form: we can only directlynThe I’ivd fhi’-fers ofMoHdali’nTor i:irs li-;uK-rs ol’Njrioiis “riglus”njir ;is ilu’ lu’sl iiii-;iiis iiln(.nsiiriii};.scicijl jiiMici’.’Ihc.icdial a’.siiUsnof Mil h an appriiiK’h VVLTI- ri-vi-ali-tlnri.-ii.’ntl h :i i’anipai};ii .slrati-};i>.l lornW alter Moiulali’. ulici said ilial in llu’irn(.-flortstoliil (lK-aric)u>>i|U(ilasMipiilal(‘ilnliy llu- .Naliijiul Di-niotralit I’arty tor itsnoiiicntiim ili’li-^ati-.s. ilu’v aiv “.noiiij; tofna U)l ol twii-l’tTsand ihav-lcrs.”b wliiihnhe meant sinj-le inilividiial.s WIKI ean hen”11 lunled” in twillir threespecial-iiuerestniate};i)ries. Thus, thestrate};is(.()h.sirved.n”in liie pi-i”i-i”se\a”ol these tliinj;s.hlaeUntuales will he iinderrepresi-iuetl. proha-nexperience Truth when we have transcendednour dependence on the “Mliblensenses.” “Truth” is realized through then”inward journey,” but when truth isnmade so highly subjective, the “inwardnjourney” becomes rather like peeling annonion: if you go far enough there’snnothing there.nThis lack of theological integrity is, Inthink, reflected in the appearance of then”Self-Realization Fellowship LakenShrine.” In seeking to be an ersatznGarden of Eden, a hospitable place ofnmeditation, the shrine lacks the grandeurnand thematic unity of a cathedral,nmosque, or pagoda. The first time I saw itnI thought it was a converted miniaturengolf course. To be sure, there are Presbyteriannchurches that look like driveins,nbut the vacuity of Self-Realizationnteachings is demonstrated by its inclusionnof shrines to other major religions—nno Hindu shrine in India would do this—nand by the gnostic vagueness ofnParamahansa Yogananda’s teachings. Mr.nBryant will no doubt be upset again, butnthen, he wouldn’t want me to be insincere,nwould he? DnIJKKKAI ( I l.ll Ki: Innnhl.” they iinl “eoiint” iiiiee:i.nwhile “it will hc” to everyone’s advaina}>ento lind blaek. female delej^ales” heeause.nas “”t\o-lei”.s.”‘ they “eoiint” twiee.nOil oiirse. white males don’t “11 Hint” atnall. So what do we ilo with Mr. .Monilalenhimsell”:’n^ ^ H 3 5nMay 1984n