SOME BASIC POINTS ABOUT RELIGION ISLAM (part two)
5) It should be clear by now that in my opinion religion has no basis in reality, for all religious claims can be either falsified directly or can be proven logically absurd assumptions that are impossible to verify or prove. Religion originally came about as a result of individual‚€™s illogical assumptions, guesswork, superstition or imaginations when people were yet immature in rationality and their philosophy was unscientific ie they had not yet devised systems and methods as to how to go about things in this regard. For example, observe guesses and reasoning of a child as well as of a grown up person and see the difference. You will see that child will come up with childish guesses that are fairytale (not based on real observations or analysis) and childish reasoning which is so obvious as compared to an adult who is well versed in scientific methods. Religion is still powerful influence amongst illiterate, ignorant or uneducated and untrained minds or less rational people all around the globe. However, if it brings individuals the comfort in living their daily lives so be it provided it brings no harm to others, but if it does bring harm to others then it should be eliminated in order to save others from its destruction and that is where organised religions and their missionaries come in with which I have problem and so do many others, for it affects our daily lives in a very bad way. I cannot discuss everything in one place but I will try and discuss as many things as possible whereever they seem appropriate to me as discussion develops.
As for science, it is a matter of observing concrete physical facts then based on that observation making further guesses or forming hypothesis about physical things for further verification. All scientific hypothesis are therefore believed to be possible for verification some time in the future, for they are all about physical objects or forces etc ie science will either prove them true or false, for they fall within the range or realm of science. The science does not allow people to form such hypothesis as have no scientific value ie nonphysical, for they are beyond the spectrum or scope of science because science cannot verify them or prove them. Once hypothetical physical facts become verified they too from then on become concrete facts, for they have been proven true and so they can now be used for forming new hypothesis for verification and so the cycle continues. Once we have observed facts, we sort them into sets. Once we have sets of relevant facts we try to put them in an orderly form to create explanations to see how they might fit together or be related to each other. We may end up with different explanations ie theories but we are always looking for the best possible explanation or theory whereby they make the best possible sense. Let say, we find a human body by accident. Now we must make assumptions as to how the person died eg did he die a natural death, or was it an accident, suicide or murder? Now we try and verify our assumptions one by one, for they are about the physical event. When we examine the body we find some gunshot wounds on the body. Now this eliminates death by natural causes as well as accidental death. Now we assume that if the person has committed suicide, we should find the weapon used nearby. We look for the weapon and find nothing at the scene and that eliminates death by suicide.
From now on we assume that it was a murder and so the murder investigation starts. Police begin to look for witnesses as well as their forensic science department gets involved in the crime scene investigation by making assumptions and verifying them and so on and so forth. An explanation only stands for so long as there is no better explanation and even better explanation may no longer support the new evidence and therefore yet further explanation may become necessary. So even the best theory is only a theory and only for as long as nothing shows up to prove it false. So theories remain a model for as long as they stand the test of time ie new discoveries keep fitting the existing explanations etc etc. If any facts used in theories fail at some stage they are modified or completely replaced and even the whole theories are discarded and new ones are formed. This is why we have no sure answers for confirmation of religious truths by way of science, but science and scientific philosophy disproves religious baseless guesses or assumptions, for science itself is always changing and cannot confirm existence of actual physical things so far still beyond its reach. The difference between a religious guess and a scientific hypothesis is that one is not and cannot be for scientific verification if it is beyond the scope of science due to being nonphysical, the while the other is due to being physical. Science can therefore prove or disprove claims of organised religion when they fall within its range but it cannot confirm the existence of a god, for example. There is no way that anyone could prove god‚€™s involvement in creation or running of this universe, for god is said to nonphysical being and that makes the existence of god doubtful. We can explain existence of all things in this universe and the way they function (not perfectly though) but not the ultimate cause or origin of this universe yet. This in no way means that god created the universe but that we simply do not know just now how it came about. Of course, we have various theories or explanations about it but so far we have not been able to verify any of them. My hope is that one day we will get there when are have invented the needed methods and systems ie the needed science and technology etc etc.
The argument that where did the matter come from originally is no proof that god created it. It is possible that matter has that property that it can pop-out out of nothingness. What if one day that becomes a proven fact? Would that satisfy the believers in god that there is no god? They would still maintain that they guess it is still god who is doing this behind the scenes. I mean, even in things which we explain by way of science many still continue the belief that their god/s is/are somehow involved in doing things behind the scenes. Superstition is difficult to get rid of without education becoming widespread. Remember, we are talking about human beings who believe all sorts of weird things. Believe you me they have perfectly innocent explanations for everything. So if that makes them happy, why disturb them unless they take it to an extreme that could prove tragic, where intervention becomes inevitable in order to avoid the tragedy. No way, I want hindus, parsies, jews, muslims etc etc brothers and sisters to change just to be accepted by others, if they themselves change through education, that is their business. I want people to accept each other equal and treat each other equal the way we are, full stop. I love people educating and convincing each other for betterment of all us out of concern for humanity but I hate organised religions, their missions and false propaganda. That is very dangerous indeed and it has proven itself dangerous over and over again and again.
Now lets turn to religious and scientific explanations of things. It is only right for us to expect that if there is a god and that if he really did create this universe and that if he really did reveal his message to us then it should explain all that is necessary for us to know so that we could live happy and comfortable life in this world. You do not have to test people by being cruel to them or by putting them through hell. It is difficult enough for a creature great or small, human or animal to survive in this universe the way it is. Putting extra burden on things which are not even part of test points us in a different direction. It exposes falsehood the organised religion teaches in guise of wisdom and morals. The scriptures have nothing in them of value to humanity in sense of revelations of god/s. What they have in them are tribal constitutions and their negative or positive affects on their followers and their followers‚€™ opponents. Does any scripture explain origin of universe in various respects? No. That is what we need to know. Is this flaw in the scriptures? No, it is not, says the missionary. According to him flaws in needed information in scriptures do not matter but it is a matter of grave concern that evolution theory is flawed. The big bang theory is flawed etc etc. Why such an unfair attitude or biased judgement? Does missionary think that god and scientist both have equal responsibility in explaining these things?
One has to realise that god if he is fair, loving and merciful, has a responsibility as a creator to explain things whereas the scientist does not. The scientist is doing this out of necessity that he thinks to know such information is absolutely vital for our survival. By the time we find any needed essential information so many people and other creatures go through so much pain and so many end up dead after a very long suffering. This is why we spend so much of our budget on education. Creating us ignorant and making it absolutely impossible to learn, how fair, how loving and how merciful is god? Would you put your children through such kinds of tests? If you cannot then you are more caring loving and merciful than god. These serious flaws in nature and actions of god prove to us beyond a shadow of doubt that these scriptures have been written by some people themselves to exploit others and that is not only a very good reason but a very strong reason indeed. Why? Because we humans do anything and everything to get the upper hand on each other even within our own families that is what power struggle is all about. Tribalism and religionism are two sides of the very same coin and I will be coming to that now.
To begin with one must understand natural phenomena and food chain. They clearly show cruelty at work right from the beginning of the life form. Life forms did not come about in any orderly manner nor in a right sort of way. Things just came about and over a very long period of time an order emerged, for all things found their place in natural order of things as already explain in my writings above ie through interaction between themselves in their own environment. Understanding evolution is key to understanding anything else. For example, we know that life forms in the beginning did not live on each other because there was nothing like that for them to live upon, so they must have been making their own food themselves ie like plants. Living things that lived on plants like animals had to come about later because they could not make their own food themselves. Of course, there would be intermediaries within each of these gaps. Animals that lived on other animals ought to come about even later in sequence. This short explanation is for reminding the reader about natural sequence of things. No one knows ancient history of mankind for sure but through experience we can make reasonable assumptions about our past based upon some clues. For example, we know that all people originate from the same ancestry. As they spread out due to increase in their population, which could no longer live and survive on the existing natural provision in the same, they spread out in all directions and into all continents.
Due to separation between them for many generations they each developed mostly isolated and independent of each other and so became known as separate races. Originally it was thought all races could be divided into three major groups eg negroids, mongoloids and Caucasoids etc based upon their outward appearances or body features but this definition was expanded when blood tests became possible. Since then they have been categorised into nine distinct groups of people who are now believed to be ancestors of all of us from anywhere after the availability of genetic finger printing technique. So we have Africans, American Indians, Asians, Australians, Europeans, Indians, Melanesians, Micronesians and Polynesians. All people in the world originate from the very same ancestors. I have already explained that we all belonged to clans and tribes locally, nationally and internationally. Originally all people lived on natural provisions but when population increased the natural provision became insufficient, so some people in some places began to domesticate animals before others. They began breeding of such animals as would help them with food, travel and hunting or guarding etc eg sheep, cows, horses and dogs etc etc. Now people turned nomads ie they began to travel as communities in search of food and fresh water etc and they had the means to do so. When they ran out of this option as well due to further increase in the population they began to settle down and this is the origin of civilisation.
By now we have three types of people ie people who still lived on natural provision ie junglies, people who still lived as nomads and people who became settled. There were always fights between people for grabbing things from each other, which still continues even today. We are used to robbing each other or stealing from each other and even killing each other in the process. You see this happening amongst all animals. If one chicken gets a chunk of food all rush to take it away from that either by force or by stealth. If one tiger kills a dear, the others come rushing to get some and so on. Remember, our cousins ie monkeys kill and eat each other and we used to do the same. The difference is only that we have become more and more civilised by now, for we have better brains than other animals which helped us make rules and better them for social regulation and that is what we call morals or ethics. Anyway as we stole from and robbed from each other and even killed each other even in the family, clan and tribe so one clan or tribe did to the other. To believe that humans were very knowledgeable and peace loving people originally but turned ignorant and barbaric later is against all the available evidences and common sense.
For our purpose I will divide people into bandits, jungle people, nomads, and settled or civilised people. Each settled people invested heavily in themselves and their societies throughout their existence and they always were ready to defend themselves as much as possible against any intruders or bandits. However, just as civilised people could only be good in civilisation matters so bandits were great at barbarity and fighting, for bullying people into submission was the only game they knew. Originally bandit will attack on time when they could get something of their victims and so they robbed the settled people just like other animals do when they prey on their victims but then bandits began to settle down themselves as well because the settled people began to pay more attention to their defense also, which made life difficult for bandits ie if we increase security, the thieves would find difficulty in stealing. This united groups of settled people into single bigger groups for defending themselves against their attacker on one hand and if they were still over powered by the intruders then the attackers united them under themselves to gain more control over them and to expand their domain. Thus smaller groups turned into larger groups for common purpose or they were absorbed and so we ended up in major groups. Likewise people also migrated into what we call India thousands of years ago. No one really knows exactly which people originally moved into India or exactly when. Human race did not come about five thousand years back as jews used to believe or even ten thousand years as hindus used to believe. It has been there for hundreds of thousands of years.
Since movement of original migrant people was always from their places of origin towards new places to find somewhere new to settle down so it is difficult to say exactly which settled people in a place are the original settlers. For example, let say people of group one ie the original migrants move to place A that was never inhabited by any humans before them. After some time the people of group one may decide to move again and go to place B which again was never inhabited by humans before them. Again they will be original settlers in a new place. Now place A is deserted. Later another group of people come from the same direction and settle in place A, we will call these people, group B. This movement is based on availability of necessities of life in an area eg food and water etc. When food or water runs out in one place people will have to move on to another new place. This would be the original or first migration. However, as people keep on spreading for thousands of generations they will eventually run out of new places for settling down. This will force people to stay in their own places from then on or that they will have to fight their neighbours to take over them and their lands and properties. It will now become very difficult for us to distinguish between the original settlers of a place and the newcomers, for basically they would be same race and body features etc etc. The differences only occurred over many generations between people who came from the same family but went in the different or opposite directions when they migrated, so one ended up in cold places and the other in hot places for example.
It is also difficult to say whether any particular newcomers came to these places in peace or as bandits and robbers or conquerors and so became integrated and mixed with the people already settled there. I had to go through this explanation because hindus of present India claim to be more civilised people than others anywhere else. This simply cannot be true, for migrants would surely take more time to settle than those who did not from their very first place of origin. The reason is that first people will suffer the problems before others which would need solution, so more likely than not that would force them to think first. It is believed that we all came from Africa, if true then there must be some evidence there for a very early civilisation. Various ancient civilisations have been discovered recently accidentally in Middle East and elsewhere but many remain buried under many layers of the earth and some even under the sea. Indian civilisation is said to be only several thousand years old but to me that seems far too young. Likewise we are told in or around 3000 BC some people who became known as Dravidians moved into northern India where they became small communities who began to live in small villages as clans and tribes and slowly spread through out northern India. There came a time when whole of Indus valley was home of Dravidians who later spread into southern India as well.
There are no historical records but as far as clues are concerned, these are world‚€™s oldest settled or civilised people that we know of at the moment. They were very well organised and civilised people who were attacked by Aryan nomads and bandits, who succeeded finally in about 1500 BC after many attempts. After the Aryan‚€™s took over India in 1500 BC they ruled there for more than a thousand years. Thereafter India was invaded by Alexander the great. After that the next major invasion of India came from muslims of Arabia and then by mughals who were nonArab muslims. When mughals were defeated by the British it was time for British Raj in India from 1857 AD onwards. India became an independent state in 1947 AD. It was separated into two states and the other part was given the name, Pakistan. I had to go through this explanation to try to explain who are hindus and what is hinduism. This is the over all context in which we must study Indian civilisation, its history and its scriptures etc etc. Of course, there are other known ancient civilisations as well eg Chinese, Egyptian, Persian, Greek, Aztec and Romans etc etc but hinduism will serve my purpose fine.
6) Origin and function of organised religions. Once people move into a new place it takes quite some time till they become settled again. The while they are unsettled they just carry on doing what is absolutely essential. This happens even when a family moves home. Slowly people become organised or a social order begins to emerge. When the dust begins to settle, they begin to realise what sort of problems are facing them, for they are causing some harm to them. As number of victims increases, the problems begin to show and people begin to look for their solutions. The problem could be, some people steal things of others, some rob others, some simply go around beating up or killing others etc etc. As problems affect people they are forced to develop their solutions ie our behaviours are instinctive. This is how came about social constitution ie by tiny little steps just like the social order. Evolution was not only physical but mental as well. We humans were not as clever as we are today, it took us generations to be where we are today. One little thing led people to another and over many many human generations it became a very complex and sophisticated society. Constitutions were brought in by people themselves to regulate human societies as much as it was thought necessary in a place at a time. All human societies developed separately therefore each had its own constitution according to its own needs or rate of development. Some societies were always leading others by far just as they are today ie some states are developed other developing and yet many people in them remain undeveloped or underdeveloped.
Constitutions are basically beliefs systems and structures for practicalities and systems for practices to allow a people to live in peace with each other as regard their daily life as much as is possible at a time in a place. There was time when we use to act first and think later but some amongst us developed the ability to think first and act later ie some people began to think more than others ie they began taking wider interests and implications into consideration. In societies where there are more people who think they are more developed, for they are better at detecting and solving the problems that face them. In societies where thinking is limited or restricted the development is also limited. If people are allowed to think differently then they are bound to find different solutions for the same problem, from amongst which the best solution can be taken aboard. However, where thinking is directed there is hardly any solution for a problems for people are not used to thinking. You see the more you do something the better you are at doing it ie practice makes perfect. When you want to do something, you try doing it one way if that does not work you try doing it in another way. Likewise if you can do something one way then you are always looking for an easier way of doing it. You do not sit and say, my great great grandfather used to do this this way so I am not going to do it in any other way. If original people thought this way, we will still be living on trees or perhaps we would have died out ie become extinct.
Originally people used to design constitutions as need arose but later they began to think ahead in time. The constitution is basically an idea that shapes or sets out a layout of a human society. The ideology sets out goals for the society to believe in and to achieve them by way of practical structures and systems and administration. The systems are political, social, cultural and economic. Political system is basically about management of society. Social system sets out social structure of the society. Cultural system sets out a structure for behaviour and practices of society and economic system provides structure for fulfilling economic needs of society. We can call the whole thing a way of life for a people. Originally, constitution was simple but as generations passed it became cumbersome. As people developed more beliefs or goals, they caused them to developed more systems and as they develop more systems that forced them to develop new practices and this is what we call constitution or organisation of human society. Political system is about government and its people ie state and its citizens. Under this part of constitution we set up structure of state, structure of state‚€™s political system, structure of government, structure of state‚€™s society, structure of state‚€™s legal and various other systems as well as rights and responsibilities of office bearers and the citizens etc etc or crime and punishment etc. I only want to touch on things for showing what is involved here rather than explain all these things, for that will make this writing very very long indeed.
As for the social structure, it shows social relationships between people of the state as a society eg government and citizens, criminals and victims, teachers and pupils, parents and children, fellow citizens etc etc. These relationships have legal consequences as defined under the state legal system in form of rights and responsibilities etc etc. The cultural system sets out for people of the society a structure for behaviour and practices in daily living. All these system and structure are interlinked in such a way as to ensure achievement of goals that were set out by people for themselves in form of ideology. What it means is that a people need to be very clear as to what their goals are or should be. In order to achieve their common goals as a society they need to organise as an administrations ie government and the membership at large ie the general public or citizens. They need such a political system that is best to help them ensures achievement of their goals. Any political system that hinders achievement of their goals is not going to work. So the political system needs to be consistent with the ideology or the whole thing will fail.
Likewise the social structure needs to be such that is consistent with the political system and is right for the ideology for achieving its goals or things will not work out. The political system and social structure need to be able to create a culture in the society whereby society has the right sort of conditions for economic development so that the society could fulfil its daily needs. Unless these connections are clearly realised and are made to work the whole society will collapse and disappear. This is the main thing that makes the real difference between the advance society and the one that is backward. This is why people need to ensure that they have set up for themselves right goals to achieve and the right systems and infrastructures or practices to achieve those goals. Failing in any one of them will result in a complete failure. This is where having monitoring and correction systems in place for anything and everything become absolutely vital so that any mistake anywhere in any idea, system, structure or practice is detected and corrected well in time before the whole thing falls apart.
Now let us turn to how organised religions came about and who brought them about or why. Originally, people were far too simple minded like babies but as babies start fighting with each other over toys so did those people even after they were grown up, for that is how far they could think. Many people are like that even today in some parts of the world. Beside dangers from other animals people were danger for each other and some still are. People were always after food and mates, they would do anything for getting these things including killing each other. People fear insecurity and uncertainty and that led them to bonding which gave them sense of belonging and a feeling of security. This bonding is very strong between man and women, parents and children and thereby between siblings. This is the basic building block of wider human society. It is called core family unit. Sibling families turn into a clans and sibling clans into tribes and tribes into kingdoms, for people want to create wider and wider alliances, for it brought them more and more security. The sense of belonging as it brought people together for sense of security also brought people the problems. For example, as social orders emerged some people always ended up dominant and others subdued. The bigger the group the bigger the gap between the top person in the group and the bottom person in the group. The top person ends up with more responsibilities as well as more privileges whereas the person at the bottom of the pile ends up with almost nothing.
Since primitive societies were simple therefore top people in the group could get away with much more than they really needed or deserved. Everyone was kept in his place very crudely as in ape tribes, more so the weakest and powerless. This forced poor people to stick together to stand a chance against the rich or powerful eg like workers‚€™ unions against the employers. However, top people did not sit idle either so they too conspired to fight back to render union of destitute ineffective and so being the cleverer group of people they designed the systems to confuse the destitute. This is the origin of organised religions. I mentioned hinduism already and its caste system is well known through out the world. One must remember that destitute people are weakest, totally poor, illiterate and ignorant, very simple individuals and so they are no match for relatively highly rich, powerful and educated people. However, rich people are much less in numbers as compared to poor people. That is the only advantage the poor have. This is true even today. Advantage cannot be used effectively unless one realises it and educates oneself to use it to ones advantage effectively. This is a commodity the destitute did not have and could not afford. The result, they could and can be easily manipulated by the powerful just like little children can be by the grownups.
For example, play hiding a coin in your hands with your toddler. You will hide the coin in your hand perhaps by taking your hands behind your back but the child will do it right in front of you. He does not realise that you are watching and know what he is doing. So tricks of the trade are invented by those who need them and are successfully employed by them to get what they want. As time goes on they improve on their tricks for their survival as powerful people depends on them. Religion is such a trick that was invented by powerful people to make the destitute their slaves without their knowing. Now bring in the picture of hindu caste system here and see how it fits neatly in this frame. The main ingredients of religion were already there all these people did was to put them together in a way that it worked for them. What are ingredients of religion. Sense of feeling insecure, fear of the unknown, hope for reward, fear of punishment, fear of death and loss of respect in the society or sense of reward in hereafter and respect and pride in the society and faith in some invisible powerful being/s ie god/s etc etc. People were already aware of many superstitious things long before organised religions were brought about. What these kings and priests did was to put these ideas together in a way they thought would work in their favour and they spent some money on it to propagate it and guess what, that idea is still around. By this mechanism called religion they have been exploiting the destitute ever since.