The concept of that the core doctrines of all religions are the same comes from 19th Century Liberal Protestantism and Scientific Rationalism. “Core unity” according to the New Thought Movement, is “the principle is that Truth is Truth, whenever it is found, whoever is sharing it.” (Note 1) Theosophy posits the theory that all religions possess the same hidden truth. Furthermore, this truth can be retrieved and distilled to be worshiped on its own.
Theosophy and its offspring, New Age Religion, adopted and expanded on the doctrine of core unity. Because of the influence of Theosophy on Pagan thought, what people regard to be “karma” is differs greatly from the Hindu concept of “karma.” The Pagan use of karma does not refer to reincarnation, but to what happens in this life. Also, the “past lives” of Paganism is a different doctrine of “reincarnation” of Hinduism.
The other aspect of core unity is that everyone seeks to be united with God. The Unity Church say that “We are spiritual beings in human bodies,” which is a common sentiment amongst Pagans. Religious Science/Science of Mind adds “human partnership with Infinite Intelligence to achieve success.” (Note 2) These 19th Century religious movements developed the popular idea that humans evolve to unite with God.
Note 1. New Thought, “New Thought Beliefs.”
Note 2. Religious Science, “Beliefs of Science of Mind.” 2004.
“Divining America: Religion in American History,” National Humanities Center Teacher Server. 2010. Web: http://nationalhumanitiescenter.org/tserve/divam.htm
Halstead, John, “Are Invented Religions Real?” Earthseed. 29 January 2016. Web: http://godischange.org/2016/01/29/are-invented-religions-real/
The International New Thought Alliance, Web: http://www.newthoughtalliance.org/
Religious Science/Science of Mind Church, 2004. Web: http://religiousscience.us/
Romanian Association for Psychoanalysis Promotion (AROPA), “Resources for Carl Jung.” 2017. Web: http://carl-jung.net/index.html
The Theosophical Society, “What is Theosophy.” 1998. Web: http://www.theosociety.org/pasadena/gdpmanu/ryan-wh/wit-hp.htm
Walter, Philippe, “Christianity, the Origins of a Pagan Religion,” trans. Jon E. Graham. Rochester, VT: Inner Traditions. 2003.
Walton, Chris, “Philocrites: Religion, Liberalism, and Culture.” 2009. Web: http://philocrites.com/index.html.