There is no doubt that whenever we begin to think about the ultimate meaning and purpose of our lives and about our connection with some unknown reality, we cannot avoid placing our existing physical life at the centre of our thought process. This, exactly, is the source of all religions that exist in this world.
Religions are not merely a few codes of conduct, cultures that have been formed with passage of time, some practices people of different races follow or some rituals that bind a few people together. If and when, all the above along with many more of such things taken together get connected with the thought of ultimate reality of life; different religious systems are evolved. Religion is some kind of rope we voluntarily like to bind ourselves with to avoid being thrown away from us and away from the God, into a void; we do not know anything about. The great souls who had gained some knowledge about human life had woven the ropes of religion so that people spend their life together sharing with each other what they had, without causing harm to fellow beings and doing all such acts that preserve life and not doing things that endangered it. Gandhi said;
In fact all our deeds must be completely guided by religion. Religions cannot be sects confined to narrow paths. Religions imply shraddha (deep respect that almost leads to devotion) in refined systems of morality for the entire world. If the Unknown we are seeking is not visible to us and we cannot properly understand Him; it does not mean that He becomes less real in any way. The religion, I am speaking about, may be beyond Hindu religion, Islam, Christianity or all other religions, but it also does not negate them. The truth is that it takes all religions in its fold and evolves a real religion.
PROMOD KUMAR SHARMA
[Extract from “Mahatma: A Scientist of the Intuitively Obvious”]