What is more important: the person or our religions?

I am not non-religious; I am anti-religious. I believe that the absence of religion will bring more peace and stability to the world. In any case, religion, as a means to ensure  compliance with “good” has lots its significance, with “legal” rules defining governance, in general.

I have seen several “inter-caste” couples, which is still pretty unacceptable for the majority of India. But, personally, I had not seen couples that have had inter-religious weddings.

But, recently, I got in touch with a  friend, who married someone in a different religion. That is even one step farther than “inter-caste.” It seems they did have their religious differences, which led to arguments. But, at the end, she said, “I thought, what is more important: the person or our religions?” And since then, she feels it has been fine.

But, the above approach is hard, very hard. My friend, herself said that it was very hard. I say it is hard, because, I have seen or heard of  parents breaking off relations with their child due to inter-caste, inter-religion marriages. I have also heard of parents breaking off relations just because their catholic daughter decided to marry a protestant guy! Essentially, religious differences and intolerance can sever even a parent-child relation!

So, in some way, I appreciate the approach this couple took! I foresee a future without religion, but if it is even full of people, who inherently believe that people are more important than religion, it will still be fine.

… I hope.

Blogged with the Flock Browser

7 thoughts on “What is more important: the person or our religions?

  1. Lalit, I respectfully disagree with your claim “the absence of religion will bring more peace and stability to the world”.

    People will find something else to fight about (race, nationality, economic inequity). If you see around the world, some of the most bitter and enduring fights are not between two religions, but between two sects of the same religion (Shia/Sunni, Catholics/Protestants, Mandal commission). I know more than a few people, who find religion to be a unending source of stability in their personal lives.

    The enemy is dogma. Mindless and often literal faith in an ideology. Dogma is dangerous, regardless of whether its origin is religious, or otherwise (think Hitler and Aryan superiority for example).

  2. Dear Lalit,
    Though rather late, I would like to comment on your brief post on religion. I do agree with you on the point that “the absence of religion will bring more peace and stability to the world”. Sachin Shanbhag puts these words in your mouth and I assume that those are yours.
    To those who disagree, I’d like to point out that military conquests have always preceded religious imposition and that many historically recorded wars were over (and often justified on the basis of) religious differences. As you have already mentioned, different sects of so-called Hinduism — vaishnavas, shaivas, shaktas … ad nauseum — are on record to have fought with each other. That was, perhaps, because what is loosely lumped under Hinduism for the last couple of hundred years had never been a monolithic religion at all — under a single founder or an institution. It was, at best, a hotch-potch of local faiths with a very thin veneer of Indo-European oral traditions. The veneer doesn’t even show in many parts of the subcontinent.
    It is unfortunate that every child in this realm is indoctrinated since birth by parents, kins and neighbours. It is true of all creeds and sects, Hinduistic or otherwise. They never get to hear themselves ‘think’ amidst all that high decibel social chorus.
    That has been the cause of much violence and, I suspect, lead to much more violence in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan. We pay lip service to ‘harmony’, without ever intending to stop violence. Absence of religion will definitely put a stop to religious violence.
    But men will be men; there are so many things to fight over.

  3. Dear Aniruddh,

    Thanks for stopping by. It is never late.

    Those are indeed my words in the first sentence of the post.

    I agree with you. I really liked how you point out that we pay lip service and claim harmony (not that we are exceedingly bad), but at some level, in our own houses, we do not have the harmony… and I stick to my view that religion’s absence will be better.

    And yes, we surely will find something else to fight 🙂

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