e.g.. Most Western scientists do not believe in Astrology. Why was there so much destruction in the year 2005 (year of East Asian tsunami). There are so many scientific explanations for the tsunami. But when we look at astrology there are some interesting points. One, it was the year in which MARS was closest to the earth. According to Astrology MARS is the planet that brings destruction. Another interesting point, by Tamil Calendar (based on Astrology – following a 60 year cycle) the year 2005 and year 1945 fall under the same category. Now what happened in 1945 – World war was in its peak, maximum destruction in East Asia (Japan). 2005 Tsunami – Maximum damage in Indonesia and Thailand (somewhere close by the same region). Is this just a coincidence or there is some underlying phenomenon which we do not yet understand. May be there is some principle behind the incidents (as explained by Astrology also). Again why does Astrology only use the heavenly bodies which exert maximum gravitational force on the earth? But Modern science would not believe or not even attempt to understand Astrology because it cannot be verified by empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol. But, are proofs by empirical, testable, demonstrable protocols the best way or the only way to prove or disprove any hypothesis including the existence of God.
Now the concept of God and religion – Who created the universe. For a religious guy it’s God. For an atheist it’s Nature, for all the scientific community its ‘Big Bang’. Ok agreed Big Bang created the Universe, but what created ‘Big Bang’. No answers from the scientific community. What makes ordinary people hate religion, as well as the supreme almighty that represents the religion – superstition, unjust rituals etc. But did God create all these rituals. Religion is a Classic paradox – Did God create Man or Man created God? Definitely Man created superstition and unnecessary rituals.
e.g.. Take the case of Ramayana – When Rama accepted Guhan (a boatman) as his brother, he made a case for Class equality. When Rama accepted Vibeeshana (A demon) as his brother, he made a case for Race equality. When Lord Shiva accepted parvati as half of himself, he made a case for male female equality. But does the Hindu society reflect any of these principles. No, all that they have carried from Ramayana is ‘Sati’ and a sacred home for Rama in Ayodhya leading to religious violence. Religion/God is much higher concept than what we see and preach today – offering milk to Idols or floating the dead body in Ganges. Therefore the religious leader who preaches violence is the one who has to be blamed for the violence and not the religion itself. Religion based violence has so many additional factors (Poverty, Lack of education, social inequality, to name a few) contributing to it. Therefore it would be naive on our part to blame it on religion or God.
Note: For the sake of political correctness, I do not want to talk about any religion, other than my own religion. That’s the reason I have quoted examples from Hinduism. I am sure there would be other such examples in other religions as well
Scientific Theories are based on underlying phenomenon. This need not necessarily mean that if there is no scientific theory, an activity or a phenomenon is not possible. Remember there was gravitational force even before Isaac Newton came up with this theory and laws of Gravitation. And in the 20th century some of Newton’s assumptions were disproved by Einstein. The whole history of economics can be traced back to the 17th-18th century. Does this mean that economic activity did not take place prior to this period? All that the studies on Gravity or Economics did was to help us understand the subject better and helped us use our resources in a better way.
In a similar way, religion and God cannot be brushed aside just because both do not have a scientific explanation. May be in future somebody would be good enough to use science to prove or disprove God. Till that time all we are left with is unlimited time to debate on this subject.
My argument is not that everybody should believe in God. I’m merely saying that while there is no proof for the existence of God, there is also no proof for the non existence of God. So while I cannot go to an Atheist and ask him to worship God, an Atheist also cannot laugh at me for believing in God.
Is the false prediction by an Astrologer a result of fault with Astrology or fault with the Astrologer? Only a small percent of Astrological predictions turning true is result of so many fraudulent Astrologers but may not have any thing to do with Astrology itself. The same is the case with religious leaders misleading the people.
Various religions evolved out of man’s fear and his desire to look for logical or illogical ways to overcome it. Most of the Hindu gods evolved out of Nature and man’s fear. Man was afraid of Elephant – so made it into Lord Ganesha/ Iravadham. Man was afraid of Lions – he made it into Narashimha. Man was afraid of snakes – he made it into Aadhiseshan. Man got most of his food from Plants – so he worshipped it as Karpaga -virutcham. Man got most nutrition from cow’s milk – therefore he made it into Kamadhenu.
Another classic example: In the North-Western region where the Lions ruled the jungles once, the Goddess is always seated on the Lion. In the eastern region where there was the threat of tigers, the Goddess is always seated on the Tiger and in the southern plains where there was this perennial threat of snakes, the goddess always had the snake as her head guard and the temples had snake worship.
Religion is Faith. Agreed. All I’m saying is – its not just blind faith.