In the world today, religion plays an important role in the identity of a person. We as human beings take a mental note of the religion of people around us. We can easily say the religion of a friend without much effort, but is religion a hindrance to our society? and most importantly which is the best religion?
To dwell into this, we both need to be completely unbiased. As I said, religion forms the identity of a person so speaking or debating about it can scratch some surfaces pretty hard. I would like to make it clear that I wrote this post from an unbiased point of view and the reasons to my points will be laid as we go along. I hope you enjoy it, and get a fresh perspective on the topic. Let's begin...
The existence of God or the creator of all is pretty much unquestionable, the reason is...yes we may be able to explain why things happen the way they do but if you take a moment to ask yourself, where did the universe and everything in it come from? You'll say The Big Bang....but who made the atoms that formed the matter that made the Big Bang? yea go ahead read that question again, I asked "who made" not "how did it happen". The latter is famously explained by many. The question of "who made" gives rise to the idea of a greater power, Energy can be neither created nor be destroyed but it must have came from somewhere(basic logic)....the idea that it was created by a greater power known to man as "God" came into the understanding of this.
So for the part on whether god exists, yea he does. So now that we've got God in the discussion lets see other aspects of human existence to better understand the topic.
Science is the laws of the universe, we are scraping the surface and reaping its benefits. Once again, who set this laws? Who coded this program? the law that opposite poles attract and similar poles repel or that gravity works instantaneously or that light travels faster than anything we know. Look at it, look at the diversity complexity in the universe...you'll notice that all of existence happens because of the interacting laws of the universe.
To make this simple, I'll use an example: fire burns, anything flammable that comes into contact with fire will catch fire. Who the heck programmed fire to have such a property? Why doesn't fire make flowers or freeze things or open a black hole? As ridiculous as it sounds, its a simple law we take as a fact and didn't realize that God set or programmed fire to behave the way it does. How he did it? In the case of a fire, the high energy of the flame excites neighboring atoms causing them to increase in energy and that leads to a flame. That is how He programmed fire to behave. So again, God exists.
Ok now that we understand "Science" is a word we humans use to describe the findings we make on how God programmed the universe. Its us learning how God made stuff, and by knowing some of it we use it to our advantage.
So if God used Science to form the universe, then Science must be the same all over the universe. Oh wait, yea its the same all over the place! The north pole, Mars, Jupiter or even your backyard the Science of things is the same. Its the same across Continents.
So now we agree on 2 things, God exists and that he made the universe with the laws called as "Science".
Now we'll look into another problem, how do we logically say that there is 1 God? Please don't quote Religious text as we are viewing this from a Scientific point of view. As I may say, how sure are you that the text is written by god himself? Its hard to prove, its only faith that makes us hold the texts very respectfully.
Its like having a school run by 2 Headmaster who works very efficiently that everyone thinks there's only 1 Headmaster. We have no way of proving if there is One or many Gods that is if we don't quote religious texts. I am still not quoting it.
So far we have made the understanding of the following:
- God exists
- Science is what God used to form the Universe and everything in it
- We cannot prove that God is ONE entity, it may be more than ONE.
So how is it that if He used ONE KIND of SCIENCE to form the universe, but HE is approached in a multitude of ways called "religion"? It doesn't make a lot of sense. Shouldn't we all have known 1 religion since we were born, hardwired into our core much like "seeing", its not something people teach you its just your innate behavior to open your eyes to see your surroundings.
Interestingly, some religions share common grounds in their prophets, stories, etc especially if the religions come from a geographically neighboring location. For example, Islam and Christianity originating from Mecca and Jerusalem respectively share the fact the Jesus is a Prophet. However in religions originating far away from the Middle East, say in India where Hinduism came about Jesus was not mentioned in their texts, nor does it in Buddhism. Buddhism shares some common principles with Hinduism and both religions originates from India.
Religions sharing some similarity when their geographical origin are the same makes this all fishy. Does this mean, religion was politically motivated? or was it a way to keep the community at peace? - as many teaching believe that doing evil will be punished in the afterlife.
So we have God whom made the Universe with His Laws that we call Science and this "Science" is similar across all of existence but suddenly somehow, we have religions emerging from across the globe with varying and even contradicting teachings in approaching God. Shouldn't God give out only 1 teaching?
Also note that older religions have a more ritualistic approach whereas younger or newer religions have a more refined teaching. If God really did send his word, shouldn't he have sent the most comprehensive religious text since the dawn of mankind? Why did he wait for a certain period before sending it? I've seen and heard people saying God didnt send the perfect text early because mankind was not ready. Not ready in what way? Is it that we had animalistic behavior? If you are in a class and your friend tells you that you'll have an exam at the end of the month, would you believe him? or would you ask the Teacher yourself? which is the right way?
So again, this God used one kind of science to govern the whole universe yet sends(i.e the Vedas, the Bible, the Quran etc) us mixed signals when we try to approach him. From an intellectual point of view, its confusing.
Despite all the differences in religions, all religion share some common code of conduct. Being polite, respecting the elderly, doing charity, not abusing animals, etc...to summarize, the one thing all religion teach despite their finer contradicting teachings is that do good and you will be rewarded well. This particular similarity is despite the cross continental differences in language, beliefs, superstitions, etc.
So is religion a hindrance to society? and which is the best religion? Religion is a way we keep our community working like a well oiled machine, it forms our core ideas and principles. It is not a hindrance to society, the issue is when people from a particular religion impose their belief onto another in the name of God. This disrupts and shatters the particular societies' religious ways, as I mentioned at the start religion forms our identity, going around and saying that someone's religion is "not good" is considered insulting the person thus causing furious battles that we have seen in history.
Which is the best religion? As I've mentioned, why the Creator of All didn't hard wire us with a particular religion? Is it that no religion is the right religion? or does religion not matter to Him? - It certainly does matter to us, for very good reasons. For this final question, there is no single religion that is the "best"; older religions have a more ritualistic approach with heavy reasoning while younger newer religion have a more finer teaching - maybe its because the founders have a better grasp on what matters and what doesn't? There is no objective way to say which religion is better.
"Almost every religion says not following their teaching will condemn them to hell after life, since no one person can hold to more than one religion at a time and all religion claims to be the right one...everyone is going to hell" - an interesting way to put things.
The world today has introduced different religions to all parts of the world, crossing their original boundary. The teaching may not seem relevant to the new places but a good principle is respecting that God made Science to govern the universe and the common teaching in all religion is amazingly similar despite their finer differences. Respect and follow these common teachings and respect the religion of another and the world will be a better place.