Thursday, 8 January 2015

Religion and Science

Religion and science are poles apart. It is nonsense to say that they complement each other. Religion is based on 'divine   revelation' and faith, while science is based on reason and observation. I believe that men should be governed by science.

 Religion says that there is a supernatural being called God, who is permanent, immortal and all powerful. Science holds that there are no supernatural entities like God, angels, fairies, demons,witches or soul ( and therefore there is no such thing as transmigration of the soul, or resurrection on Judgment Day ), and that nothing is permanent, everything is changing, and in a state of flux, in accordance with certain laws which can be discovered by scientific research.
Science holds that the only reality is matter, which is in motion according to certain laws.

Some people ask : who created matter ? The answer is : there is no creator of matter. Matter came from matter, though the form keeps changing.

 With every step science advances, religion recedes. Thus, people at one time thought that small pox is due to the anger of a goddess ( mata ), but now we know it is because of a virus, and can be prevented by innoculation. People at one time thought that rains are caused by a rain god, Indra, and so if there is drought we have to propitiate that god in some way ( many people in India still believe that ). Today we know that rains are caused by the build up of low pressure areas over a heated land. People at one time believed that Adam and Eve were created by God. Later Darwin proved that men evolved from the apes.

 Why is religion such a powerful force even today ? It is because of massive poverty in the world and the feeling of helplessness. Religion gives a solace, an imaginative respite, to the poor masses who are living in utter misery. Without such a temporary respite they may go mad, so horrible are their lives.. And as for people who are not poor, they too often take recourse to religion in view of the uncertainties in life.

 For example, businessmen too are often religious, because there are uncertainties in business, and so they take recourse to god to save them from any business calamity ( I was told that some prosperous businessmen in the south have gifted some shares in their companies to Balaji, the God of Tirupati, and the dividends go directly to Him). The amount of ' chadhawa '( offerings ) in many temples is enormous.

 People take recourse to religion ( as they take recourse to astrology ), because of a feeling of helplessness. They plan something, but something else happens. In  other words, we are unable to control our lives. So we believe that it is some supernatural force ( or, in the case of astrology, the stars and planets ) which control our lives ( hoi wahi jo Ram rakh rakha ).

 The truth is that we are unable to control our lives because of the low development of science as of today, compared to what it will be 100 or 200 years hence. In that future age, science will have developed so much that we cannot even imagine about it today, and then men will be able to largely control their lives, and then there will be no need of God.

 The scientific outlook took a long arduous struggle to gain acceptance. For centuries the Church in Europe persecuted the greatest scientists with blind ferocity,  hounding them, torturing them and burning them at the stake. Bruno was burnt at the stake. Galileo almost met the same fate during the Inquisition, and escaped only by recanting ( Copernicus' theory ). Even as late as 1925, a teacher in U.S.A. John Scopes, had to face a criminal trial ( the famous 'Monkey Trial' ) for teaching Darwin's Theory of Evolution ( see online ).

 It is said that many scientists believed in God. That only proves that scientific and unscientific ideas can co-exist in the same head. Since originally most ideas of men were unscientific,  their remnants will persist for a long time, often in men who are otherwise quite scientific in their thinking.


  1. In this context, I would prefer disagreeing with you. Science is based on observations of universal laws that are pre-existent and formulation of applications based on such universal laws using intelligent design and logic. Though matter and energy could be pre existent, intelligent life cannot automatically come from it without some superior mind manipulate them with some objective. Thus science cannot explain the reasons for the origin of universal laws and the intelligent designs that we observe in the life forms of nature. Thus it is necessary to believe in the existence of primordial energy, matter and mind. When mind works on energy and matter, personality comes in. And that supreme personality that existed from the beginning along with the primordial energy and matter is what many scientific philosophers call as God, the first source of everything. Of course, a distributive nature of the first source personality could bring about other subordinate personalities, later. I suggest those interested to have a look at this supreme revealed knowledge book called the Urantia Book. It would not be difficult for superior humans to comprehend this book, though it may not be so for others. To know more you may refer to my blog site:

    1. Dear Mr. Rajan, your argument of existence of a "superior mind" to create an intelligent life is self defeating. For any such Superior mind to exist, it would need an even more superior mind to create it.

    2. That is the child's argument, Himanshu. If we postulate that nothing ever existed, then you need to answer the question how something got into existence. But when you postulate that something always existed-e.g.the energy-matter-mind- then the pre-existing mind working over the other two can be logically thought as creative. Science and mathematics as we know now exist due to postulates and theories based on observations. If the theories and postulates could explain other things, then they are validated. And that is how we go ahead!

  2. Sir it seems you are deeply influenced by western philosophy. Try with Oriental philosophy as well where concept of God is not limited to give and take, reward and punishment but much beyond that.