Going by the dictionary definition,’Religion is an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to the supernatural, and to spirituality’.Most of the religions in the world believe in some supernatural power or life force.However , few religions do not believe in a deity in particular but they do believe in a soul,after-life,incarnations and many other metaphysical concepts(a lot of pseudo science). Many people in the world would like to believe in a personal god who is omnipotent,omnipresent and omniscient.For them he is the start and end of this world.But it is someone that they believe exists.That does not prove he really exists.There is no scientific evidence for it.He is as imaginary as ‘space aliens’.
But how did this ‘Hypothesis of God’ became the ultimate power in this world of real people?At the time when the human civilization has just started evolving and when there was no scientific discovery, the man was yet to find the answers to so many questions.He had no idea how this world came into being.He could not understand the patterns of the natural occurrences like rain,thunderstorm,landslides,earthquake etc.Therefore he started attributing these to be the whims and fancies of some imaginary god that had the power to create and control the whole universe.He started performing rituals , sacrifices and offerings to keep the gods pleased.This notion of God was passed on from one generations to the next generation till it got completely absorbed in people’s psyche.And from here began the politics of Religion.
Intellectual People from every region propounded their own philosophies on god and compiled them into some rule book(now known as the sacred book).The commoners had to abide by the rules written in the book due to the fear of being punished by their revered god/gods. These fears,beliefs and dogmas that continued to be passed from one generation to other generation got so deeply embedded in people’s beliefs that today religion is considered as something ‘Sacred’ .By ‘Sacred’ I mean something that cannot be questioned.Why it cannot be ‘questioned? Because it should not be questioned.Why it should not be questioned? Because it shouldn’t be questioned.That’s all.
With the advancement of science ,now we have found answers to many questions.Charles Darwin propounded a scientific explanation about complex world of living things that had nothing to do with a ‘Higher Being‘.With the theories like ‘Big Bang‘,we have been able to explain the evolution of cosmos.Despite all these scientific achievements of ,people have not been able to let go of the religion. Still a person,commonly known as atheist ,who views the world with common sense and rational mindset and rejects the notion of any supernatural power that he cannot experience in the real world, is perceived as a ‘misfit’.It is really sad to see the creationists in a world wherein now a new human being can be created without the involvement of sexual intercourse.It is really frightening to see students in the faith schools being taught the evolution with the help of religious mythology.
Many religious fundamentalists denounce ‘evolution’ as it goes against their ‘Sacred Book’ .It is very sad to see women in many countries have been deprived of their reproductive rights in the name of religion.It is highly disappointing to hear absurd things about homosexuality and birth control from a revered religious head.It is terrifying a group of religious fanatics declaring ‘religious-wars’.All this is happening because it has been sanctioned in the ‘Sacred books’.Those ‘Sacred’ books that were written thousands of years back by some people who did not even know that the earth revolves around the sun and it is not the other way round.But unfortunately many people today think those authors then were more evolved than we are now.
So why is it that so many people are still holding on to ‘God’ and religion ignoring the evidence that lies in front of their eyes? Why do people not question the omnipotence of god in case of the death and destruction caused by natural disasters?.Every year many Hindu pilgrims in India disappear(or actually die) on their pilgrimage to ‘Amarnath’ Shrine or ‘ Kailash Mansarovar ‘ due to landslides or earthquakes.Why does not God comes to save their lives?Of course ,many religious and spiritual people will come up with some vague and metaphysical explanations that are based on no evidence that it was part of the plan by god or by soul etc.
One major reason is they cannot let go of the great emotional comfort that religion offers especially in the situation of death and mishaps.People would like to believe that there is life after death ,that life is something god has planned for us ,that ‘Everything happens for a reason’ ,that god takes care of everything etc.But is it wise to find emotional comfort on assumptions?
Death as the ultimate end is fearsome for many people.They can’t accept that as something natural.Every living being that is born will die .Every living being has a life cycle in order to maintain the ecological balance in this world.But we being a sentimental species, would like to add a special meaning to it .
Why don’t we adopt a new perspective towards life ?We all will die eventually and that is fixed.But we will die because we were lucky enough to get a life,a life that we got completely by chance when one particular sperm out of millions fertilized one particular egg. Among all the permutations and combinations of the possibilities of birth that could have taken place,we got the chance to experience this beautiful and amazing world . Isn’t that a gift in itself.Does not that makes us realize the value of life more than the religious notion of life being sacred as ‘it is a gift of God’.?
And after you realize that there is no after-life and it is only one life that you get ,doesn’t that propel you to make most of it?
Who says atheism brings ‘despair’?
What do you think?