Month: January 2016

Reasoning over blind beliefs: The debate on religion

I do not think there exists an invisible higher entity that demands we follow its rules. In fact, there is only one set of rules that I obey everyday, the laws of the universe.

Science is not simple. It is an intellectual and practical activity and the study of structure and behaviour of physical and natural world. It is all about observation and experiments. We observe the behaviour of things around us. We can even put the plot in a formulae and with the right mathematics make the calculations and predict the results. With science, the occurrence of events can be reasoned for and therefore explained. We can explain why a ball bounces or an apple falls to the ground. In other words, science is all but a documentation of what happens in the real world.

 

Religion is a theory itself; one not subtle enough to explain anything with certainty. For centuries, it persuaded humanity with stories. People believed the Earth to be flat and that the sun goes around our planet. These are only a few things preposterous things that religion has got wrong. The thing about religion is that it is not superficial. For many stories, there are no explanations. It is incomprehensible how people following different religions have their own stories on the creation of the world. While religion is meant to bring people together, to much contrast it is ripping a civilisation apart.

 

We have heard incredible stories about the gods, stories which certainly amused me as a child. I grew up reading about these stories at school with compulsion and heard a lot of stories at home. I feel there is a lack of technology in that era for such miraculous things to happen. The stories that have followed through generations are amusing but bewildering due to its lack of explanation. But I have to admit, the plots in these stories are full of morals and supposedly an inspiration for others to follow. It gives hope to people but it takes a diversion from good to evil when opposed to different religions and certain beliefs when not properly interpreted. It causes war and does follows inhuman acts.

 

You cannot pray to fix anything. Giving a donation to a religious institution does not necessarily guarantee you a place in heaven cause it is non-existent. Personally, I have always doubted people who ask for charity. The screen you read this is a result of science. The letters we see are small pixels programmed in 0 and 1. We were not a creation of god but stardust, a result of the big bang perhaps but certainly not a result of karma (a belief that the activities of this life will decide my fate for the next life). The belief in god is holding back logical thinking and free will. Among the wrong things religion does, it promotes slavery, discrimination, sexism and is against homosexuality. All religions are small minded and arbitrary. After all, these philosophies never evolve.

 

The universe is always right. You can see the resemblance of science in microscopic atomic particles to planets and stars. With science we have reached the outskirts of the solar system. From lighting a bulb to starting a settlement in Mars, it all follows the laws of nature. You cannot argue with science when it gives proper reasoning. Many times these behaviour are unexplainable yet it gives the same results anywhere on the planet respective to its environment.

 

As a lyric of David Bowies song ‘Quicksand’ goes,

I’m not a prophet or a stone aged man

Just a mortal with potential of a superman

I’m living on

 

It could be easier to see God as a mortal with potential of a superman. Among mortals, there are wise people and then there are people who are still learning the ways of life. We give out words of wisdom to those who know less and the so called Gods probably did the same. I will never believe that praying will bring rain, bring a solution famine, save a dying diseased person or strike us with a bolt of lightning. There is no way that I can believe in the ridiculous potential of an omnipotent person who we doubt ever existed.

Religion has passed on through ages but is far from demonstrating that it is beneficial. The laws of the universe cannot be defied or altered. We have to live with these laws which existed before birth and still goes on after death. All manmade laws need to be reviewed from time to time. A certain principle cannot be followed at all places and stands logical for a limited time. Nothing is as permanent as change and human ideology needs constant refining and changes. Religion is old and has come through generations without refinement. How can we trust an ideology and say it is right when it is hostile to education, or in other words slowing down the progress of humanity.

 

I will not oppose against the fact that religion has brought people together since its initiation. There are a lot of good things to take but we should also consider the fact how brainwashed people have become. A belief in god gives people false reasoning to accept the truth. If a man dies in a tragic accident, we believe the person is in a good place after death. Creationists pray for a success of an event to give them hope for betterment of family or friends, to pass through difficult times or to forgive them for their sins. To me, it does not make a difference if we make religious sacrifice in the name of God and follow a ritual cause the results will pan out the way they should, according to action, not a belief or in keeping faith.

 

It is easier to explain things to people who follows religion in a religious ways. I am a vegetarian by choice and people think I am doing dharma, in other words making way for god to forgive my sins. If people understand it that way, it is because it is easier for them to see it in a religious prospective. I do not do this for dharmaIt is hard to explain science to people who firmly believe in religion cause people of all ages have been comfortable with the idea that there is a divine human being who knows the wrong from the right and created them. You cannot easily replace something with nothing, specially when people are unaware that science has the answers to it all along.

 

Religion does not have the answers to why the stars twinkle, why the sky is blue or why the grass is green. It cannot explain how gods come into existence, why it cares about humans, why it is gods will to make us suffer or why souls are eternal. Cavemen of a different millennium could be baffled by the extraordinary occurrence of events in nature and call them supernatural, but since the renaissance period we have progressed in science and done wonders that would seem impossible for previous generations. The world has reached its height of discovery and inventions with reasoning and religion should not stand a reason for humanity to progress further.

 

There is everything to live for and nothing to die for. We are not to bow down to an entity that does not exist. The purpose of life is unknown and it is a great miracle that we are even alive. I feel lucky to be alive cause life itself is unexplainable. You can still argue against the theory of evolution or the big bang cause there is no full evidence to it either, but you cannot completely deny it. I chose to believe in science, the fact that we are predecessors of an intelligent race and we will continue to find reasoning for everything that occurs in nature from human behaviour to all our artificial creation.

 

I am a man of reasoning and to me if God exists, it is in the form of the universe. Someday we might be able to explain everything but I don’t believe there is anything new to learn from religion. If religion makes you spiritual, keep it with you but I am just telling you that it will be easier to understand the real world when you believe God’s will is not the answer to anything miraculous occurrence in your life.

I am an atheist and I always will be. I prefer reasoning to blind belief. Do you think it will make any difference if you stop praying from today? Live free and think about it.

Image by Dale Spencer @Flickr

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Endurance

Walking unknown roads
Leads to newer worlds
Moving without any support
Carrying with me only hope
Dying mans charade words
He left the world without knowing the truth
Let sleeping dogs lie
Some people never learn
Truth seldom needs reason
Lies most certainly do
Learn to live in peace
Harmony will thereby follow
Live, struggle and don’t surrender
Life is your only hope

**Written somewhere around 2010 to 2012**
Photo by State Library of New South Wales via @Flickr

 

From best friends to strangers

I’m not talking about anyone specific. I’m only talking about the way of life. Even though we would want people to stay with us forever, unfortunately they don’t. I think I know why.

It takes a great chemistry for people to bond together. I thought I had a bunch of friends who would always call me at 12 AM on my birthday. This year, it was different. I received none and it was expected. Who in the right mind would sacrifice their sleep just to wish me on my birthday only to ignore me for a few weeks or months until we accidentally meet up in a convention or a friends gathering? It was different even till last year, but this year everyone had moved on.

I’m not saying I’m mad at these people for not giving importance to me or staying out of touch cause I realise that everyone is leading their own lives now. We’re no kids with time to fool around. With time, we have responsibilities and we grow up. We realise that there are bigger and better things to do. We move on to a newer path and to far away places. We cannot abruptly meet up cause we have schedules. The only people we see everyday are the people we work with. It turns out that school memories are the best ones where we really get to know people and enjoy. In every stage of our lives, we meet new people and lose touch with some old ones. Do not freak out, it is only natural.

I know that I’ll still have a great time with my buddies if we decide to meet up. The hard part though is the meeting itself. They’re far away, literally in a different continents. Even if we talk everyday, it is still hard to truly understand what is going on in their lives. We can put all out efforts but we spend all our time in conversations. We are always in different phases of our lives. I have finished my undergraduates while many of my friends are still doing it. Many who studied with me haver a full time job and some are vacationing. It was easier to hang out and talk when we were in schools and college. After the end of high school, I lost touch with many of my friends and it is not just friends but also family that I can relate to.

I used to have one hell of a time with my cousins. We fought with each other, I cried over not having the remote control, they bought me cake and candy. I have some fond memories of my childhood and now they’re all married and have children and so mature. Who knows when my own friends have their own spouses and children cause it is only a matter of time. I couldn’t have imagined how life would pan out, that people who were so close to me are now distant living their own separate lives. I cannot be there in every occasions even though I’d like to be. In time, it becomes even unfavourable to be in someones company. I’ve been there in occasions of celebrations of my friends before where we had a blast but now their company have changed and I wouldn’t fit into it. I have my own company now and I doubt that they’re not going to be here for the rest of my life. No one stays with us forever cause we search for a purpose in life and we sway away to places where we belong.

There used to be a time when I went for English Language Classes at the British Council before I joined high school when I met a bunch of like minded creative people. We were all interested in reading literature and writing. We came together by common interest and we became friends but right now, I have no idea where they are or what they are doing. I thought it was common interest that binds people. Even though we have the same goals, we have different ways to achieve it. Some pursue a career in it while to some it is just a hobby but none of us are together in the journey cause we approach it ways best suited for us. Some even stopped dreaming about becoming a writer.

There were occasions on which it was a bad fight which caused a split from my friends and now when I don’t even have a grudge on them, I don’t feel like I want to invite them back to my life. We all change and it is odd when a friend of mine calls me by my old nickname cause nobody calls me that, not now. There are some people I know who have become so distant that everything they talk about is new to me and we cannot even have a decent conversation without being left puzzled by what we are doing. In time it almost feels like we do not know the person anymore so it is okay if people grow distant cause it happens to everyone.

We change as people and our interests do not serve for us to be together every time for every occasion. I still believe that in time I will get my friends back when they move back from the different continents but I do not expect us to be energetic and would be surprised if they do not send me a wedding card. Our relation with people are held together only till we can comprehend the common situation we are in. Actually, I like it this way cause I haven’t really lost all my friends. I still have a handful of good friends who have always been there. There are friends who come home for a day or two and we have a blast cause some friendships die while some do not take time to reignite.

I prefer the company of a smaller circle cause I know my priorities. I think I know which friends will be there till the end of the world and those who will disappear into the horizon. It does not matter when friends drift apart cause the ones that matter will stay close to the heart. I’m glad that I’m still making new friends and that there are so many people out there who are an absolute delight. I don’t think it takes much time for similar people to get to know each other well cause I’ve met people with whom I became too close in no time. For those with whom it didn’t click, perhaps they’re not meant to stay.

I’m glad of my bunch and I know they’ll be there when I need them even though they’re a just a mile away or seas apart. I know my friends, the real ones, the ones I can really count on and those who will stay. I love you guys even though you’re all idiots.

Image by *Hardworker< @ Flickr.

Another usual daydream

I found myself staring at the embers in the chilly afternoon. I was going to places in my deep thoughts, not thinking but just wandering. I think I reached somewhere by the outskirts of the city on a highland. I know the place and I remember the field below me. It is vast and open with tall dried grass. Over there, you can always fell the sun.

The wind is not strong and you do not feel cold, not even in winter. I have been there many times but only in the afternoon. There is a small stream that flows in the summer. The sound of flowing water is peaceful. It is probably what purgatory sounds like. It feels like someday an endless river will take me to the place I belong. The ideal paradise is probably better than how I imagine it to be. For now, I see beauty in simplicity.

A place is no heaven unless there is a company of good people. I would want there to be a single wise person, preferably a poet like Robert Frost or a writer like Oscar Wilde. Yet I would like to have company of someone better than me but imperfect. I find beauty in imperfection. The dream person is someone cute, short, fair and with long black wavy hair. I can smell her right now.

Perhaps the world would be a better place if everyone could spare a couple of minutes to close their eyes and imagine. One can only be truly satisfied when they themselves answer the questions of their own curiosity. People should take a cup of tea and take it easy. The physical world is cruel and your imaginary world is a garden for you to find peace.

I know that there are days when theres a storm in my abode but I try to keep it a happy place. Sometimes I pretend to smile and hope the sadness goes away. The physical world is great, but it is not realistic. Here we are driven by responsibilities, but we are fated to pretend. I wish I could close my eyes forever. In the wild, there is my home and I cannot wait till I see the place again.

Close your eyes and you will find the place where you belong.

Image by Riccardo Cupping @Flickr