When Philosophy becomes Stagnant and Dogmatic, the sludge that is formed at the bottom goes often assumes the name of Religion.
Dogmas are ritualistic believes. They generate ISMS and people following it in herds. A Dogma pre conceives suspension of conscience. It adopts a “Follow Me” phenomenon. In all such formations, individual becomes a speck in crowd. He is merely echoing someone else’s logic.
Religion has been long pursued as a Philosophy in Hinduism. Here the ISM is broken into a ‘Do it Yourself” project. You define the shape that you wish for it and chose any number of pieces from the available lot. You may use some and leave some or use all.
It allows you a panoramic view of the Humanity and its desires and concoct a shape that you deem suitable for it. It allows you to define your reach and leave any number of pieces and yet claim completion of the assembly.
Religion as largely understood is akin to Commandments. Thy shall do this and Not do that. A rigidly defined tunnel vision. Disobeying the Commandments is sinful. Each of the different ISMS tries to project an exclusive right over the salvation of an individual’s soul. Till French revolution happened most of the European States had religion playing a very important role in their Statecraft. Religion was being used as an instrument to rule and subjugate people.
This concept of religion had caused major strife among communities and nations
The concept of Rights of Catholics and or Protestants were replaced by rights of nationals only post French Revolution.
Philosophy as defined by Protagoras is: “Logical Quest for truth”. Religion often Values Myth and Veneration over logic. Merely because certain Thought process has been venerated since long and certain Myths are adduced to it, It gains precedence over Common Logic.
A common man prefers religion over philosophy. Religion as commonly understood renders certain illusory powers to its followers. Religion implies an “Eyes Wide Shut” syndrome, much easier to follow and abide.
It entices him with the pleasures of certain illusory heaven, and alternately frightening him with certain hellish calamities.
These illusions to him are tools to alleviate his misery.
Philosophy on that count is cold and unreceptive.
So till the cause of this misery is removed, his needs for these illusions is Live. Religion like OPIUM shrouds his thinking and dulls his pain. The solace though illusory , yet the mitigation of pain is real.
Hence its necessity can not be wished away till the roots/real causes of misery are removed from the society.
Religion often believes in language and phrases. The words gain precedence over the spirit. Chants and Rituals form its core. It is easier to motivate herds with dictums and rituals vis-à-vis trying to engage them in an Intellectual intercourse. A conscious thinking demands a constant live introspection, certainly a painful and an arduous task.
This all may look like a typical leftist prattle. However the so called proletariat revolution in different parts of world too could not achieve the objective of
“सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः, सर्वे शन्तु निरामयाः in its 100 years of History.
Broadly all religions have spoken of a society where the ABLE people take care of the “Lesser Children of God”. State through the Taxes collected by it, is expected to bring “Salvation” to the said disadvantaged segment of the society. Marxists incantation too is no different.
The so called Marxists have also failed. Their FALLIBILTY is related to the commonest human failing i.e. GREED. It is a basic Instinct or malaise present in both Humanity and Animality. The ruler / ruled equation is common to all formats, maybe except in ‘ANARCHISM’. The Leftist Rulers too indulged in their Greed and behaved same as The Aristocracy or the Monarchy. Such bourgeois behavior is a desire common to the entire class of Elitist. Marxists in their march towards power fell for the same trappings, forgetting their ideology.
If the 5000 years of Hindu or Vedantic Philosophy and nearly 1400 years of Islam and the 100 years of Leftism could not make any dent in human behavior, then necessarily the prescription is defective. The ready over the counter (OTC) drugs can not cure difficult maladies.
Lately this OTC drug is often damaging the society. Suddenly followers of a particular religion are feeling threatened and have made a cult of Violence as their signature. Violence by one segment acts as a Fodder and Fuel for the retaliation or a recoil by the other group/victim Group, Principally in the name of Religion” illiterate young people are being indoctrinated, to kill.” Religion devoid of philosophy, is a dead institution. Such dead institutions can be extremely dangerous. One can not ask questions from a dead institution. A Dead Institution can only be venerated and or revered. No space for a debate makes any institution akin to an Expired or “Past Use by Date” medicine. Hence religion instead of emancipating people, its original Tall claim, is killing people.
Religion guided by Philosophy free of any ISMS alone can help mankind. There has to be a constant introspection and debate. Using conscience as Google Map marking one’s milestones, chalking the route alone can satiate the quest for truth. Let us throw away all used maps and old signages.
Buddha said, I can merely show a finger and indicate a direction, you must walk on your own, and chalk out your roadmap........................... to be continued.