Religion and survival
Posted on September 9th, 2011
The law of nature is survival of the fittest. The Sinhalese have lost their living space in the North, East, Hill country and now even the Capital Colombo. Many enemies of the Sinhalese may want us to be passive and follow Nalanda Buddhists. Various peace merchants tried that trick of making us passive, to stop the war against the terrorists.
Why has this decline taken place ? Even after independence, the economic power appears to be in the hands of nonÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œSinhalese. Unless the reasons for this decline are found and the decline arrested, the future may be bleak. I have given below some steps that can be followed, that has no ties to dead, unproved Indian myths that could make us fit to survive. If we blindly follow unproven Indian myths, our fate may be as good as Nalanda Buddhists.
In nature, all species evolve to survive. Even virus and all living species, including plants evolve, adapt to changes, to survive. Those that do not learn and adapt to changes or do not have the competitive spirit needed for survival. will go extinct The Sinhalese need to be concerned that we have gradually lost our living space. We cannot even sing ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œMae Sinhala apage ratai ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œ.
Clearly if a group does not learn, then that group is asking for trouble. Indians learnt from the Nalanda debacle and dumped Buddhism. The Sikhs learnt from various wars they had with Muslims, and changed their religion to a militant version, in order to survive. At Nalanda, the Buddhists were so brain washed by religion that they thought the attacks by Muslims were a result of Karmic action and did not fight back or run away. Even a ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œMeeharakaÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ would run away or fight back, and Nalanda Buddhists were so passive that it did not have a defensive response of a buffalo. . My view is that natural defensive response is blunted by Buddhism and this could be dangerous in an environment where the fittest survive. The diminished effect of the defense response could be made use of by our enemies and many may wish us Nirvana. The Chinese have become a major economic power , just 60 years after dumping religion.
Some may not realize that there are hardly any Buddhists left in India now. The main reason is that after the Nalanda debacle, Buddhism never revived in India , and perhaps the Indians got wiser after their bitter experience. In fact there are hardly any Buddhists left in countries in the silk route.
If the sea did not protect us, we may have turned Muslims, just as the Malaysians did.
Many scientists are of the opinion that religion is a thing of the past. The views of well known thinkers are given below. The famed science fiction writer, Arthur C Clark, who once denigrated religion as ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã¢â‚¬Å“a necessary evil in the childhood of our particular species. He was so anti religion that he did not want any religeous rights at his funeral. Russell: I regard it as a disease born of fear. Einstein: A manÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s ethical behaviour should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties and needs; no religious basis is necessary.
Religion is also a threat to rationality and science. Religion can overwhelm our best judgment and cloud our critical faculties ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œ Daniel Dennett. This has to be taken seriously as our own survival in a highly competitive global economy will depend on us being rational and able to make use of science. For example, as there is not a shred of evidence for Nirvana, Sansare or rebirth. These unproven Indian myths appear to be Harry Potter stuff. People who believe them appear to be living in a dream world. This impervious to reason is, I think, the property that we should most fear in religion.
Dawkins, ref. , suggests that religious belief in the “faith-sufferer” typically shows the following elements: It is impelled by some deep, inner conviction that something is true, or right, or virtuous: a conviction that doesn’t seem to owe anything to “http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence” or reason, but which, nevertheless, the believer feels as totally compelling and convincing
Nirvana, rebirth, Sansare appear to be ancient beliefs in Hindu, Tao, Jain belief systems etc, that has crept into Buddhism and do not have a shred of evidence supporting them. These unproven beliefs appear to be Harry Potter stuff and appear to be man made as the concept of God of ancient people.
Religion has been a creation and a main part of the ancient world. Indians, Egyptians, Aztecs, Mayans and many other groups practiced religion, generally to do with betterment in the life after death. Ancient Indians believed in Nirvana, Karma, Sansare, rebirth etc and we do not have any evidence to support these beliefs.
Religion however has a positive therapeutic effect on people, especially those in distress. Buddhism is extremely valuable due to its contribution to ethics and morality. However certain aspects such as reduction of suffering may be questionable as in the modern world ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œNo pain, no gain ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œ and one has to be prepared to undergo suffering and to do lot of hard work in order to be successful. The negative effect of religion is that it can influence the mind of a person and can act like a mind virus, preventing that person from thinking clearly.
For survival in a highly competitive world, the following may be useful.
1. Adapt and change to meet new situations and threats.
2. Continuously improve.
3. Learn from those who re successful and learn from those who failed, so that mistakes could be avoided.
4. Carry out SWOT analysis and risk analysis.
5. Be prepared to overcome difficulties and undergo suffering.(Do not expect to have an easy ride, if you want to win )
6. Be imaginative, innovative and have self belief.
7. Be aware of the external environment and be aware of threats.
To be successful, one has to be prepared to put in lot off work, undergo suffering and pain. Buddhism does not encourage this, as the main thrust of Buddhism is to reduce suffering. In the real world, ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œ no pain no gainÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢.
Adapt and change is important for survival. If we want to survive, we need to think modern and move away from a 2500 year old mind set. We need to learn from the Chinese, and reduce the suffering of people throgh hard work
Difficulties with rebirth, Nirvana and Sansare
Rebirth, Sansare and perhaps Nirvana are ‘is’ things that deal with the physical world. One has to prove the existence of the ‘is ‘ things by verifiable evidence, if possible supported by theories. Not only there is no evidence for rebirth, the mechanics of rebirth, such as transporting info from one to another gets difficult to explain. The ‘is ‘ things has to follow laws of nature and laws of physics, that includes laws related to gravitation, Thermodynamics, electromagnetics and quantum mechanics. Lord Buddhas ethics are ‘ought’ and moral things that I accept. Lord Lord Buddha has himself said not to accept things just because some one said so or in a text (Kalama suttra). I am following BuddhaÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s scientific reasoning, in questioning unproven myths.
Rather sadly, people are blindly following an Indian religion that even Indians do not follow any more. My fear is religion may keep us underdeveloped, just as in Tibet , and poor and may make us easy targets for imperialists, that include Indians.
2. The mind virus called religion