Here is an interesting video about God, prayers, science, reasoning, faith and beliefs..
The video asks simple questions like:
While many religious people believe that God performs miracles and treats all kind of diseases… Why doesnt God heal amputees ?? Why doesnt God answer the prayers of amputees? Because it is medically impossible to grow back a human hand or leg!
OK, How to identify a fundamentalist? Well here is the list
Fundamentalism in any religion is wrong and leads to the clash of civilizations.. or as somebody said it is actually a clash within the same civilization between the scientific and the religious communities..
Hopefully as humans become more and more scientifically aware, they will reject all the divisive, unscientific, negative and destructive preachings, no matter which religion they belong to…
One cannot disagree more with the above statement after viewing the below mentioned thought provoking documentary videos.
Part I – The God Delusion
Part II – The Virus of Faith
When I say ‘east’ below, I mean ‘India and towards the east of India’
and west means ‘the world towards the west of India’
Interestingly after going through the documentary I find that the aspect of violence is not present in the eastern religions all of which have their origin in India -Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, or say in the related variations like Zen, Taoism, Confucianism etc
Unlike the western religions, in the eastern religions good and bad people are distinguished not based on whether they are believers or non-believers. According to the ancient vedic teachings of hinduism, those who help others in need and do their duties are good (Vedas say ‘Dharmo Rakshathi Rakshithaha’ -which means he who performs his moral duties, helps those in need is in turn protected by his deeds). Those who hurt others are considered evil.
For that matter intentionally hurting ourselves is also evil says hinduism, buddhism and Jainism. So you will never find a suicide bomber in these religions
Also, unlike christianity which I feel has a negative effect as it says ‘We all are sinners. And son of the god came to pay for our sins’, which I strongly disagree with, for I am no sinner, and I dont need anybody else to pay for it even if I ever commit one.
Does it mean people can continue to commit sins, since their sins have already been paid for? Doesnt it sound absurd? The very thought brings the picture of a crime filled society in front of our eyes. Thank god not all are taking these teachings that seriously How on earth can a inncocent new born baby or a child be considered a sinner?
Now look at the eastern religions, say hinduism, the thought of each human being here is as a pure soul, a clean spirit, and this has so positive effect on our morals. In hinduism ,we are not considered sinners, instead vedas say ‘Aham Brahmasmi’ which means ‘I am the God’ or ‘God lives within me’. The whole thought is so positive in spirit and encourages a person to do all good deeds like a God. NO negative or inferior feelings about ones ‘self’ are allowed here. In my language Kannada there is a hymn ‘Enna Kaale Kambha, Dehave Degula, Shirave Honna Kalasha’ – which can be summarized as ‘My body is a temple where God lives’. What a pleasant feeling it is..
This is the major difference between western and eastern religious cultures. In the west people celebrate their birthday by putting off the candles ‘which is a symbol of desctruction, the light is put off’
On the contrary, in the east, we celebrate every occassion by lighting lamps – the symbol of spreading light, being constructive. Vedas say – ‘Tamaso Ma Jyotirgamaya’, which means ‘From darkness towards light’
In the eastern religions putting off a lamp or any other source of light is considered bad, negative, as it introduces darkness..
Well I am not against any religion, but this is just a analysis of what I have seen and understood about the cultures. I am definitely proud about my ancient Indian culture. though I am not deeply religious. I dont go to temples and pray to god asking ‘give me that, give me this’, if God really exists, I think he is intelligent enough to know my needs and will definitely give me the best what I really need, there is no need to pamper him with offerings, prayers and what not, I dont think God thinks so cheaply that you have to bribe him to get your things done. Yes, but I do thank God for this wondeful universe, for the food I eat, for the nature I see, for the good health I have, for the great friends I have and for everything else that I have..
In fact I love to converse with God on the nature of the universe, as to why do we exist (not in a spiritual sense, but in a scientific sense), about the laws that govern the universe and what not.
I do feel that there is a great need in the west to become more spiritual (which preaches love NOT hatred, enquiry and thought NOT faith) than blind religious. I suggest people to try out the Art of Living, though I am not associated with it in anyway.
Faith is dangerous because it doesnt allow you to question it. The church does not want scientists to enquire into Big Bang bcos it feels that since God created universe we should not enquire into that creation!! Nothing sounds more absurd to me. Did God tell them that ‘Dont enquire into my creation, I fear that you will then understand everything about the universe, and then what will my value be?’ Well, if God did not wanted us to enquire into the creation of the universe, he would have simply not given us that intelligence at all, right ?
In fact I was so surprised when I saw the video, that in the western world (which many people in the east think as a well developed and more civilized and well educated society) they teach children that the universe is only a few thousand years old and all of us were created in 7 or 10 days or whatever ! I couldnt control laughing and really felt sorry for those kids who study in these educational(?) institutions.
As an observation, divorce rates have increased in India in those urban places where western culture has creeped in. Otherwise, you will rarely hear about a divorce in India.
Faith is dangerous because it does not allow you to question things, and when you cannot question things you dont enquire into it, and when you dont enquire into it you wont understand it, and when you wont understand it you wont invent anything new. If all humans had been strictly religious, we would have been still living in old stone age. Thank God (:0) there are thinkers too on this planet who would love to enquire into hows and whys.
More than a thousand years before Galileo was humiliated and giordano was burnt alive in the west by the church for having declared Sun as the center of the Solar system and earth to be moving, in India Aryabhatta wrote a book on the same subject saying ‘Sun is the Center of the Solar System and earth revolves around it’ and lived the life of a great scholar. I really feel proud to be an Indian.
The church said Earth doesnt move. Science proved otherwise! Yet they humiliated Galileo, burnt Giordano alive!
Then they said Earth is the center of the Universe! But then science proved otherwise, earth is nowhere in the scene and even for our local solar system Sun is the center!
Then the church said God created universe in some 7 or 10 days. Science proved otherwise. Universe has been there for billions of years and life on earth also evolved over millions of years, not like an instant coffee in 7 or 10 days!
Just imagine where we would have been if some of the humans had not taken those steps of thinking instead of blindly believing what religions say! I am glad that I was brought up as a thinker and not a blind believer of some faith.
Also its interesting to note that none of the western religions talk about things which would have been a product only of a scientific enquiry. Why doesnt the holy books say anything about quasars, quantum mechanics, black holes, planets invisible to naked eye, doesnt these data makes it clear enough that religions are creation of narrow minded humans and not GOD? Well for those who object for my specifying ‘western religions’ in this paragraph, let me tell you that eastern religions are more scientific and have a spirit of enquiry in them. If you disagree with me, please read ‘The dancing Wu Li Masters, ‘The Tao of Physics’, ‘The arctic home in the vedas’, or look into what great scientists like Neils Bohr, Oppenheimer, Schrodinger, etc had to say about the vedic texts, Bhagavadgita etc…
Now my question is when the religion is so wrong, why on earth do we need it ? Cant we be good to fellow humans beings and other life forms on this planet, do good, progress, be thinkers, make earth a better place to live, and NOT be religious at the same time? Or atleast let us not follow those preachings which encourage us to commit crime, hate or hurt others, consider ourselves sinners, teach scientifically wrong things, suppress the spirit of enquiry and reasoning