- Paulo Coelho
Swami Vivekananda has said that ‘every religion comprises of three parts – mythology, rituals, and philosophy’. Religions vary in their mythology and rituals but very nearly propagate the same philosophy in different words, i.e. they all point towards the same light. I believe the problems of this world are due to the differing mythology and rituals that we imbibe from imperfect humans and then practice them considering them to be the end in themselves. These rituals and mythology are only meant to strengthen the desire to know, and also to create doubts, so that we can develop clarity and faith, with the final aim of understanding the philosophy. To reach there, we need to listen to the mythology, question it – find answers; perform rituals – to strengthen our resolve and will power to finally use these attributes to get to understand reality, and in doing so reach the destination of ‘the same light’.
Every thing that we do in life follows the same pattern. Take our education. Why do we study? Who enjoyed studies? Remember how your parents gave you stories of why education was very important. Why start with the alphabet? Is the aim of education the teaching of the alphabet? Why do we go through the ritual of going to school at a set time everyday? Rituals and mythology have a role to play but what must be remembered is that these are but a means to an end. Education is much larger than learning the alphabet. Similarly religion is beyond rituals and mythology. Please do not mistake the means for the end – which is ‘the same light’.
Doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother
- Khalil Gibran