Religion and Philosophy

Philosophy is a viewpoint held by an individual on how he believes life should be lived or the mannerism which according to him is more appropriate. Philosophy is a theory which evolves out of the desire to move away from a set way of doing things or a set way of leading life.

 

Often with passage of time and out of religious, ethnical and cultural beliefs, certain things are done in a certain manner and over a period of time such mannerisms and such beliefs are passed on and followed by generations down the line. A person who may not necessarily be someone wanting to bring about drastic changes in traditional beliefs, but who may dare to think differently and dwell upon the basic issues of traditional beliefs comes out with his own theories and thoughts. He dares to question the rationale of tradition which according to him were not born out of religious beliefs but seem to be the application of the thought process. He comes out with his own interpretation of why he believes traditional approach needs to be improved upon with the change in time or why he believes that he would rather discard tradition and take an approach which is not identifiable with the existing traditional way.

 

In certain cases, new theories, new beliefs and new approaches are not looked upon favourably by the society and the people who dare to think differently become untouchables. In some cases however, where the philosophy professed is not totally against the set principles or where there is no challenge to the divinity or religious beliefs but is more in the form of seeking independence from forced practices not relevant in the age when the theory is devised, certain sections of the society tend to take a positive approach, though such acceptance is bound to be slow and gradual.

 

Before accepting or rejecting new theories and new approaches which are directly connected to way of life and tradition, what needs to be analysed is whether the philosophy is directly targetting the fundamentals of the society and the religious faith, beliefs and practices of the society. If the philosophy does in any way, directly or indirectly target the basics of religious faith and belief, then such theories are liable to be rejected. Religious faith is the basic fundamental of human existence and any attempt to negate, disprove or blemish the religion needs to be dealt with firmly.

 

However, if the theory targets the traditional approaches which are purportedly derived out of wrong interpretation of religion by unscrupulous elements, who when devising traditions did it mainly for the benefit of their types, if there is any attempt to bring about awareness of the follies of such wrong traditional approach, then such philosophies, theories and thought processess need to be heard, analysed and accepted if found correct. Rather than distancing the thinkers, the traditional followers should try to understand why the modern thinker has come to a situatation which led him to interpret things differently. Were they wrong in imposing beliefs which they thought are correct? Were they wrong in promoting things which they inherited from their elders without questioning the rationale? Do they feel that what they followed without questioning needs to be followed by their succeeding generation without raising any objections?

 

What needs to be understood is except the fundamentals nothing is constant. If certain beliefs and approaches are not in sync with the change is generation, it would be futile to force their application. It is best to instill the fundamentals and leave the application to the generations to come. If the fundamental beliefs are strong no generation would dare to question the very existence of divinity and there will not arise a breed of preachers, theorists and philosophers who end up creating a distinct cult of followers who forget the original beliefs and start practising the theories of the modern day preacher who may have his own reasons of creating a different thought process.

With an increase in such philosophers and theorists, there will eventually come a time when the original followers would stand the risk of extinction and there would arise a number of groups with their own different beliefs, all purportedly under the umbrella of a common faith. All such groups shall eventually strive to achieve supremacy over the other groups which may lead to conflicts, disputes and situation of strife.

It is therefore best to consolidate beliefs by instilling the basic faith strongly within the followers and allowing them the liberty to be liberal in approach rather than imposing rigidity. This will ensure harmony and a purposeful existence of humanity.

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