Religious Intolerance Makes Religion Irrelevant


Dharm granth sab jala chuki hai, jis ke antar ki jwala,

Mandir, Masjid, Girje, sabko tod chukka jo matwaala,

Pandit, Momin, Paadarioan ke fande jo kaat chukka,

Kar sakti hai aaj usi ka swagat meri madhushaala.

It’s a couplet taken from a literary work ‘Madhushaala’ by Harivansh Rai Bacahhan. It translates into:-

The one who has attained wisdom to extent of leaving no room for misinterpretation of religious texts, and the one who has liberated himself from insinuating thoughts of preachers of religion, can only achieve the tranquillity of oneness with God.

Before we proceed further, few more thoughts, rather presumptions, which I make while I put across my thoughts on religious intolerance.

  1. If your God or Religion instils fear in you and others then shun that religion and God.
  2. If your God or religion is better than that of other faith, then your interpretation of religion is ill founded.
  3. God is no narcissist.
  4. If religious rituals you practice, help you attain power than humility, in physical form and in social setup then you haven’t understood religion.
  5. If you follow a religion for any other reason than achieving oneness with God, stop being religious. You can afford being an atheist. Your life will be the same.

I am a devout Hindu, so is my family. Daily seclusion to spend time communicating with God is rule for most in family. Still, I am a different Hindu than what anyone in my family is. I have unwavering faith in the Goddess Durga, I worship her, my mother is worshiper of Lord Krishna and my brother is devotee of Shiva. Everyone in family worships a different Hindu God, and in Hinduism we have plenty of them. We never discuss which God is supreme and we don’t care about it too.

So is my neighbourhood. Family across the street are devout Muslims, follow Islam. Another Family is of Christians and so on. So is our society, following different faiths and yet in perfect harmony.

My family, neighbourhood and society will be in perfect harmony till the time we don’t try to prove supremacy of Religion, faith and God we believe in or worship. Try to prove ‘your’ God superior and see irrelevance of religion creep in.

Why does one follow a given faith and thus a chosen God? Just because it’s important to take one path, Just one path to achieve emancipation/ Moksh / oneness with God. No religion or God provides you with shortcuts towards achievement of Moksh. Your actions and wisdom with which you act, when harmonise with path of fearlessness, truth and justice will take you on path of emancipation. And that is God. The name with which you address Him does not even figure-in in scheme of things.

When we start focusing on the name with which we address God, rather than the final goal of oneness with him, we give birth to religious intolerance. Go to Hindu temples and you find many reciting Shlokas in Sanskrit, having no idea what they actually mean. So is with Muslims, failing to understand true teachings of Holy Koran. Similarly Christians don’t understand true teachings of Bible and Sikhs start worshiping Gurus than following the teachings of Holy book Guru Granth Sahib. This is this lot of people who care most about the name with which they address the God.

God is no narcissist, thus, he does not care how many know him with which name. He is kindest of all, and, once you completely surrender in front of him you will forget which religion you follow. You will have killed the worldly desires of senses, turned them inward and liberated yourself from lust of all kinds, fear form anyone including God, greed of amassing worldly things and hatred of any kind. You will have realised you are just a soul unaffected by anything but your own senses.

Holy books are messages by God himself to humanity, they don’t belong to anyone. Pickup one and follow it, don’t ask others to follow what you follow. Everyone has to wait for ripe time before he starts treading path of oneness of God.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. tanuja pathak
    Mar 13, 2015 @ 14:31:11

    Agree with you, but of course you already know that! The insecurity that individuals have in the vast sea of people around them, leads to many seeking supremacy of their particular religion. The tranquility, the calm, the serenity which must accompany any religious following comes when we let ‘others’ around us go. In my opinion the first step towards religious tolerance is assuring people in general.instead of saying-my religion is great, Let us tell others that your religion is great but let me follow mine ! Maybe things can be better

    Like

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