Home » 10th Class » Essay on “Role of Religion” Complete Essay for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Essay on “Role of Religion” Complete Essay for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Role of Religion

“Irreligion is our Malady, Religion the Only Cure”

Religion, as bundle of myths and miracles, doctrines and beliefs has become outdated. The miracles and mysteries of magic and religion have yielded place to new ones of science. Belief is no longer a matter of faith, it is based on reason; intellectual faith has replaced emotional attachment. “Unless religion sheds its primitive cosmology, myths and miracles, it is likely to go down into the limbs of oblivion”  [E. Hubbard]. Like all human institutions religion, during the course of time, had become too formal to serve any purpose. So it produced a religion of superstition, tyranny and barbarism. None can deny that “religion is the best armour in the world but the worst cloak” [John Newton]. Our world is strewn with the wreckage of many a venerable traditions built by unnumbered generations. Religion is like a modern ozymandias battered by scientific knowledge and hollowed by its own weaknesses. Today it stands humbled amidst these ruins; it is an outcaste, a refugee in our civilisation. The Christian Europe has built an unchristian civilisation; in China and India  it has lost its former hold and Pakistan considers Islam a lever to register political backing within and without. Religion has been condemned, criticized, challenged, and ridiculed by anybody and everybody. Marx considered it the opiate of the masses; Russell regarded it as a disease born of fear and a cause of untold misery to the human race. Some psychologists have explained away its value as a beneficial psychosis.

It is only the perverted version of religion that has stunted manhood and deformed spiritual growth. It supported bigotry, lent its authority to the oppressors and sanctified many pretence. It weakened man’s social conscience and moral sensitivity. It engendered fatalism, intolerance and narrow mindedness; it fostered conceit, hatred and fear. It undoubtedly played a shabby irreligious role. This was not true religion. “True religion”, says the German writer Goethe teaches us to reverence what is under us, to recognize humanity, poverty, suffering and death as things divine.”  That is why man tried to break with religion; he extolled science and glorified materialism. But man needs anchorage in life otherwise it becomes a meaningless drift. It did not take much time for man to realize that by divorcing religion he has lost the mooring in life. Man, despite the surfeit of ideas and ideologies which generate enough heat but no light, suffers from the sickness of the spirit. They have lost the sense of purpose and direction and there is nothing to elevate their sense of suffering and sin. “Man is still groping for a more meaningful and synthetic view of life and human destiny”, says Radhakrishnan. Unbelief is impossible for man and a modern man needs faith – a living faith, a new faith which may give spiritual happiness.

Religion does not come in clash with science. Science is a method and a set of explanations based upon proofs; religion is an experience, and adventure of the spirit based upon spiritual illumination. Science takes up the second cause but religion the first cause. We should not forget that scientific investigation affirms to strengthen faith, it kindles our sense of mystery and wonder. The deep sense and wonder which filled the heart of man when he first saw the glorious sunrise is, in no way, different from the one looking through the lenses of telescope myriads of rolling spheres in the universe. “Man’s highest happiness”, says Goethe is to have fathomed and to bow in reverence before the unfathomable”. Scientific researchers can perform this dual function – these can fathom the unfathomable. But this is a continuous process to discover the unfathomable. Tennyson’s Ulysses correctly says, “Experience is an arch where through gleams the untraveled world”. Max Planck has acknowledged that even the scientists have to wait for the “spark from heaven”. If we subject everything to reason, religion will have nothing mysterious; if we violate the principles of reason our religion will be absurd and ridiculous. “Science cultivated to be utter neglect of religion would produce a reign of impiety and sensuality” [G.W. Shields]. It is quits strange that the man in the street is losing faith whereas the man in the laboratory is gaining.

Our world is torn with rivalries; people belonging to different cultural patterns and racial groups are facing one another in hostile postures. We talk of nations living together but mere talks will not go a long way. The international forums of discussion have become forums of rivalries. International ethics based on agnostic positivism or ethical humanism will not do. Religion as a binding force is necessary for a world made by the developments of science. Moreover there is a sense of insecurity; we fear our neighbours, we fear our friends. The inner defences of man have cracked. He has lost his independence and self assurance the civilizing process has reduced his Godman to the state of a suckling cotton-wool baby sterilized and vitaminised. There is an acting sense of loneliness and unrelatedness. He must realize that he is a macrocosm and microcosm. Science, technology, political, and economic security cannot retrieve his lost confidence. Man must become aware of his own divinity. His sense of insecurity and unrest would vanish if he comprehends the ultimate goal of life. Religion has the capacity to steel the soul of man.

Violence has disfigured the face of the civilized man. People fight for ideologies they fight for supremacy. But war is an orgainsed violence and often breeds violence. Religion and spirituality serve as antidote to violence. We are living as sub-human beings perceive that they belong to an order of reality higher than brute nature, they will abjure violence.

Man is supposed to work for society though he is unaware of social purpose. The modern states demand obedience from its subjects and conformity with mass opinion. Man has been transformed into a herdsman. These mechanical methods cannot make man conscious of his social obligation; the willing cooperation  of the individual is needed. Religion can generate and strengthen the spirit of social purpose. Progress of man lies in enlarging human sympathies and outlook. Man’s inner self must be illuminated to colour his outer actions. The challenge to the modern civilisation cansurvive on the strength of material equipment and power acquired over Nature. Its sustaining power must come from within that is from spiritual values. In the earlier civilisation the challenges were from Nature and the forces of Nature but today we have to fight against spiritual paralysis. T.S. Eliot one of the greatest English poets of the 20th century recommends Daya, Daya-Dharam, and Damitri as the solution for the spiritual regeneration of the modern world. Religion can rehabilitate humanity. It contains the essential means of coping with evil which threatens the existence of the civilized world. It restores the best relationship between the individual and the eternal.


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