by Niharika R.Bandaru
It has been around two weeks since we started this blog, and I must say the pace at which we are moving is commendable.
Like the rest of you, I have enjoyed reading these blog posts, each unique and educating in its own way. This has helped me to notice how different and similar we can all be at the same time. We are one species, but all so diverse, that it becomes difficult to form stereotypes (and why shouldn’t it? This blog is designed to show us all that there is a lot more to know and learn than what we generally see). I think we are on the verge of shaping a platform where we show that “religion” can have a million meanings and the expression of which is boundless; that we can all have separate journeys but one common destination.
I am not an expert on topics of faith, and neither do I intend to be. I am only 20, and my idea of religion could be a far throw away from what it’s meant to be perceived as, and Hinduism, with all its complexities, is actually a very simple religion to follow, which helps.
But there has always been one question that has bamboozled me, that somehow does not seem to provide me with concrete answers. And the question is: Why do we need religion?
Everyone I’ve met and discussed this with has different answers. I myself have my own interpretations to this, but I really do not know if I’m on the right path. And what is right and wrong really? What’s “right” for me might not work at all with another person. I always thought my faith is something, other than my intellect, a property I can never lose. I would like to think of it as a buffer, and something that’s a lot like my conscience, that would guide me and make me strong, rather than cocoon me. I’ve realized this makes me tick. In my everyday life, my faith doesn’t play a big role. Like I wrote earlier, the only “religious” thing I do all day is remember God’s presence every time I pass by the tiny figurines I have of a few Hindu deities in my room, and it is during these times that I thank Him. But I know of one thing for sure, and that is the fact that if my faith were absent from my life, I would feel terribly hollow from the inside.
As the years pass by, religion will probably play a different role in my life. Maybe I will be more ritualistic; maybe my definitions and my beliefs would metamorphose into something else; maybe I will decide to abandon everything and go on a spiritual adventure-who knows. It’s for me to know and for us to figure out. And maybe writing in this blog context will help me figure it out.
It is going to take a few more years and a lot more maturity to know better. My parents always told me that religion, like everything else in this world, needs time; time to make sense. And as human beings, we are always learning.
I would like to hear from all the writers and readers of this blog and know what they have to say about my quest. So tell me, why do we need religion?