What is religion? Why we need it

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There
have no any definite idea about religion, exactly what it is? Someone argued
religion as a code of life. Someone hold it as a system of belief. On the other
hand, someone claim it as the sigh of the oppressed people. From the very
beginning of history, we find religion as the only of human being to satisfy
their live. There of many arguments in favor of origin of religion but if we
think about the theories we find one thing behind it, to save them; to lead a
life with happy mood. It is clear to us from history that early human being had
inclined or believed in religion in order to live with happiness as well as to
lead a secure life.

The
word ‘religion’ is derived from the Latin word ‘religare’ which means to bind
together, to reconnect. Re is a prefix meaning "return," and ligare
means "to bind;" in other words, "return to bondage." Greek
philosopher Cicero replay, religion means’ to read over again.’

Webster's
Collegiate Dictionary traces the word back to an old Latin word ‘religio’
meaning "taboo, restraint." The term "religion" refers to
both the personal practices related to communal faith and to group rituals and
communication stemming from shared conviction. "Religion" is sometimes
used interchangeably with "faith" or "belief system," but it is more socially
defined than personal convictions, and it entails specific behaviors, respectively.

In
the definition of religion we may say "Religion is any specific system of
belief about deity, often involving rituals, a code of ethics, a philosophy of
life, and a worldview." Here worldview means, a set of basic,
foundational beliefs concerning deity, humanity and the rest of the universe.

In
the language of catholic encyclopedia religion………means the voluntary subjection
of oneself to God.

Emile
Durkheim holds that religion is a unified system of beliefs and practices
related to sacred things, that is to say, things say apart and forbidden-
beliefs and practices which unite, into a one single community, all those who
adhere to them.

After
all, the best definition of religion I have seen is in The Encyclopedia of
Philosophy. It lists traits of religions rather than declaring religion to be
one thing or another, arguing that the more markers present in a belief system,
the more religious like it is:

  • Belief in
    supernatural being (God).
  • A distinction
    between sacred and profane objects.
  • Ritual acts focused
    on sacred objects.
  • A moral code believed
    to be sanctioned by the God.
  • Characteristically
    religious feelings (awe, sense of mystery, sense of guilt, adoration),
    which tend to be aroused in the presence of sacred objects and during the
    practice of ritual, and which are connected in idea with the God.
  • Prayer and other
    forms of communication with God.
  • A worldview or a
    general picture of the world as a whole and the place of the individual
    therein. This picture contains some specification of an over-all purpose
    or point of the world and an indication of how the individual fits into
    it.
  • A more or less total
    organization of one’s life based on the world view.
  • A social group bound
    together by the above.

Here
we put a question, if these definitions are true than why we find more religion
than one. George Bernard Shaw explain this “there is only one religion, though
there are a hundred version of it”

From
this discussion we find a common thing about religion, belief in super natural
power, God, Allah. Every religion holds this belief as their primary concern.
Though, we saw many idea about the belief of God e.g., monotheism, ditheism,
polytheism, all of them their belief, God is true.

If
we inter into the deeper understanding the religion we saw some supernatural
events, God, Angels, Holy spirits, Prophet, life after death etc.

Because
of highly religious concerning point, the nature of God in different religions
are, in Christianity- the everlasting God, the Lord, and The creator of the
ends of the earth, fainteth not neither is weary. There is no searching of His
understanding. (Isaiah, 40:28)

The
nature of Allah expressing in Holy Quran is: “In the name of Allah, the
Entirely Merciful, and the Especially Merciful. [All] praise is [due] to Allah,
Lord of the worlds - The Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful” (1:1-3)

Nature
of God expressing in Jews scripture is “I believe with perfect that the
Creator, blessed by His name, is not a body, and that he is free from all the
accidents of matter, and that He is not any form whatsoever.” (Moses Maimonides,
thirteen principle, article 3)

Hindu
religious scriptures describe the nature of God as “You are the original Lord,
the original personality, you the supreme refuse of the universe, the knower
and the knowable and supreme abode; by Your infinite form all the universe is
pervaded” (Vagavad Gita, 11:38)

In
present world religion has been treated as an obstacle in development, humanity
etc. But documents show us religion is the only way to insure and preserve
harmony and peace. Without religion morality is fake. No society can live
longer without religion. Now let me show the argument in favor of it.

One
of the most elusive objectives of every human being is "Happiness."
The Noble religious scriptures reveal the secret of attaining perfect happiness
in this life and forever. We learn from the religious texts that happiness is
an exclusive quality of the soul. Thus, a body that attains all the material
successes it longs for - money, power, fame, etc. - often belongs to an unhappy
person. Happiness depends totally on the degree of growth and development
attained by the soul, the real person. The Holy Qur'an provides a detailed map
towards perfect happiness for both body and soul, both in this world and in the
eternal Hereafter. “Absolutely, Allah’s allies have nothing to fear, nor will
they grieve. They are those who believe and lead a righteous life, for them joy
and happiness in this world as well as in the Hereafter. This is God’s
unchangeable law. Such is the greatest triumph.” (10:62-64)

Christian
religious scripture narrates happiness: Happy are those “who reject the advice
of evil people, who do not follow the example of sinners or join those who have
no use for God. Instead, they find joy in obeying the Law of the Lord, and they
study it day and night. They are like trees that grow beside a stream, that
bear fruit at the right time, and whose leaves do not dry up. They succeed in
everything they do. But evil people are not like this at all; they are like
straw that the wind blows away. Sinners will be condemned by God and kept apart
from God's own people. The righteous are guided and protected by the Lord, but
the evil are on the way to their doom.” (Bible, The Psalms: 1)

War
and terrorism are human failings. Every person hates it. It breaks the social
stability. Social control, brotherhood, peace all fall in trouble. All the
religious scriptures teach us how to lead a life with peace. The Holy Quran
express: “Fight against those who fight against you in the way of God, but do
not transgress, for God does not love transgressors. ……… Thus, if someone has
attacked you, attack him just as he attacked you, and fear God and remain
conscious that God is with those who guard against violating the bounds set by
Him.” (2:190-194)

Jesus
Christ, founder of Christianity, he laid more emphasized on peace, brotherhood,
social harmony. He advised his apostles: “Peace, I leave with you, my peace I
give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be
troubled, neither let it be afraid.”  (John 14:27)

Religion
is a philosophy. It’s follower or adherents are the core thing. And to lead a
moral life with peace and happiness human beings live together in a society.
They help each other in order to co-existence. All the religions encourage
people to live together as well as offer a social code to live with harmony.

Islam,
in its literal sense means 'Submission', submission to the will of God. Muslims
believe that Islam began at the time when God sent the first man- Adam to
earth. After successive prophets like Noah, Abraham, Moses and Jesus the last
Prophet, Mohammed was sent as the seal of the Prophets. All the Islamic
prophets were social reformer. Holy Qu’ran declares: O mankind! We created you
from a single (pair of a) male and a female, and made you into nations and
tribes, so that you may know each other. Verily the most honored of you in the
sight of Allah is (one who is) the most righteous of you.... (49:13)

Every
religion, it may be Christianity, Hinduism or Buddhism, survive because of its
followers. Religion helps us to lead a life with social unity by providing us a
common code as well as ethical standards.

Family
is considered as a social unit. Every person is living in a family bondage. It
helps us to grow and bringing up our life in a successful manner. But in
today’s scenario, our family bondage is breaking up. Reason working behind it
that is lack of proper religious knowledge. All the religion laid great
emphasize on family relationship.

Islam
is a complete way of life. It considers the family the corner stone of Islamic
society. It bases the atmosphere in the family on sacrifice, love, loyalty, and
obedience. When we say "family" we mean the traditional definition of
it namely husband, wife and children. Grandparents are also part of the
extended Muslim family. If we contemplate the Quran we find that it refers to
parents’ children relationships in four main places. Before it asks children to
be good and loyal to their parents it requires parents to be extremely careful
in upbringing their children. In other words it asks parents to do their duty
before asking for their rights. The Holy Quran declares "And surely We gave
Luqman wisdom saying Give thanks unto Allah; for whosoever gives thanks, he
gives thanks for his soul. And whoever disbelieves, Allah is All-Independent,
Worthy of Praise. …………………………… But if they strive with you to make you ascribe
to Me as partner that of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not, but
deal with them nicely in the world and follow the path of him who repents to
Me. Then unto Me will be your return, and I shall tell you of what you used to
do." (Luqman-31)

Like
Islam Christianity also laid emphasize on family. In Christian concept, as like
Islam, the Family was instituted by God in the Garden of Eden. The Family is
God's covenant arrangement where two people, male and female, are joined to one
flesh, "For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and
shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh" (Gen. 2:24).

Christian
scripture also said "And God created man in His own image, in the image of
God He created him; male and female He created them. And God blessed them; and
God said to them, Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it;
and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky, and over every
living thing that moves on the earth" (Gen. 1:27-28).

Religion
is universal. Religious affiliation in human mind is inherent themselves.
Philosophers hold some criterion to considered religion as universal. First, it
wouldn’t be limited within national boundary than it will hold preaching
activities. In these regard we find only three religions as universal,
Buddhism, Christianity and Islam.

At
last main focus of every religion is human being. And religion is like a
guideline, it teach us how to live? How to treat with others? What is our duty?
How we fulfill it? What is our destiny? etc. As a rational being we have some
common duties. Firstly, we testify God as one and unique. We must declare His
sovereignty. He is holding the sovereign power. We must obey His order. In this
regard the Holy Quran declares: Say: He is Allah, the One and unique; Allah,
the Eternal, and Absolute; He begets not, nor is He begotten; and there is none
like unto Him. (112:1-4) Holy Quran also declares: Most exalted is GOD, the
true Sovereign. There is no other god beside Him; the Most Honorable Lord,
possessor of all authority. [23:116]

God
in Christianity is the supreme creator and ruler of the universe. The Christian
religion, like Judaism and Islam, maintains that there is only one God, who is
active in and concerned about the world. The true nature of God is beyond human
experience and understanding. However, Christians believe God is
infinite-without beginning or end, omnipotent (all-powerful), omniscient
(all-knowing), benevolent (all-loving), eternal, unchanging, holy, perfect, and
personal.

As
a creature of the Creator, we are the servant of Allah. As a servant we are not
free beyond Allah’s control. Allah is so kind. He offers some reward for us
under condition, to obey Him.    Real happiness and peace can be
found in submitting to the commands of the Creator and the Sustainer of this
world.  God has said in the Quran: Truly, in remembering God do hearts
find rest. (Quran, 13:28) Religion is everything but without believe in Allah,
without obey His orders religious is nothing, Allah first, Allah last. Allah is
everything. 

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