Born out of a Marriage of Convenience
between Concept of God and A Code of Conduct
Chapter 5 Section 1 of the book to know how Religion was born.
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originated as a code of conduct. The ancient learned men created a set of
norms related to positive thinking, good social behaviour and good hygiene
for the common man. Sometime in the early history of mankind, these rules of
good behaviour had a marriage of convenience with the concept of God, and
religion was born. Let us examine what could have been the circumstances
leading to this marriage of convenience.
Conduct for Hygienic Behaviour
ancient holy saints were learned and they knew what was hygienic and what
was not. They perhaps knew about disease, what caused it and how to prevent
it. They wished the welfare of the common man and wished to create the
originated as a code of conduct. The ancient learned men created a
set of norms related to positive thinking, good social behavior and
good hygiene for the common man
of good social and hygienic behaviour. But they could not explain sense to
the illiterate and ignorant common man and ensure compliance. Even if they
knew about the existence of germs, they knew they would not be able to
convince the common people that there were germs around us which were
invisible to naked eye. They had no microscopes to prove or give clear
evidence for people to see and believe. They probably found an easy way to
convince people to follow hygiene, to avoid disease and at the same time
ensure compliance – they gave a religious tinge by saying that it was the
“will of God” or the “word of God”. The best way to ensure
conformity was to tell the common man that such behaviour pleases God, or
that the religion preaches such behaviour.
and suffering were explained as God's curse against our misdeeds, or as
results of our sinful deeds ('paap'). Religion came in handy to explain to
the common man how he could avoid disease. Hygienic methods to avoid
diseases became religious rituals.
most of the religious beliefs and rituals have a very scientific base. The
problem is that they were probably quite relevant in those days, and may not
be so today. Today scientific and medical techniques are so advanced that
there are preventives or cures for some diseases, thereby obviating the need
of some behaviours which have become rituals today.
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