Wow, Terrific, That’s Great

[A friend of mine] was present at a high-powered ethics institute which had put on a forum in which representatives of the great religions held a panel debate. First the Buddhist talked of the ways to calm, the mastery of desire, the path of enlightenment, and the panelists all said ‘Wow, terrific, if that works for you that’s great.’ Then the Hindu talked of the cycles of suffering and birth and rebirth, the teachings of Krishna and the way to release, and they all said ‘Wow, terrific, if that works for you that’s great.’ And so on, until the Catholic priest talked of the message of Jesus Christ, the promise of salvation and the way to life eternal, and they all said ‘Wow, terrific, if that works for you that’s great.’ And he thumped the table and shouted: ‘No! It’s not a question of it if works for me! It’s the true word of the living God, and if you don’t believe it you’re all damned to Hell!’ And they all said: ‘Wow, terrific, if that works for you that’s great.’

~ Simon Blackburn in Ethics: A Very Short Introduction, 2001