Alice in Irrational Land

Is religion really a way of life?

It didn’t take me forever to realise that my parents are following a fandom. This one is proudly called Hinduism. There are a lot more fandoms but since my tiny brain has been oppressed to read and follow only Hinduism, with an apology, I’ll proceed with one of the greatest stories I have ever heard.

As we all know, each story has its own characters – the antagonist, the protagonist and others. But, this fandom is like marvel movies – a lot of superheroes and supervillains belonging to the same group called  The Avengers.

The superhero, I’m going to talk about is charmingly enticing Lord Krishna. A genius, villager, playboy and philanthropist. He is known for playing pranks on people of his village, stealing butter and hiding the clothes of women who were taking bath. He was amazing in flute too. He was physically so strong that he managed to lift a whole mountain to set up a relief camp for the flood victims. If we go further back in time, we will get to know that he was an avatar of Lord Vishnu, a dark handsome man lying on his bed made with smooth folds of a giant snake. Although he was born to devour evil from this world, his main objective was to kill Mr Kamsan who was actually Krishna’s maternal uncle. Just like Harry Potter fandom where every year, Lord Voldemort waited till the end of the academic year to kill Harry, we had to wait till Krishna comes off age to kill Kamsan. And it was a preplanned agreement that even though other Gods confronted Kamsan, they shouldn’t kill him. And finally, of course, Krishna kills Kamsan (Oops! Spoiler!), bringing justice to this world filled with pride and prejudice and literally becoming an idol.

Thankfully this movie isn’t released in this era or else IMDb wouldn’t have even bothered to give a rating. To the extent of my knowledge of vocabulary, if a man steals my clothes when I take bath, I call him a pervert. Waiting for a little boy to grow up just so he can fight crime is an utter senseless story. Come on! He is not Shiva from ‘Tamilpadam’. And most of us don’t question how this could have possibly happened.

Even though I have handful of stories like this, I fear liberalism in my nation. People have grown to be so irrational that they can even accept any criticism on them but never their invisible God.

If you have read till this, you will be smart enough to infer that I don’t believe in God. Correction. I don’t believe in the existence of God. I am an atheist. All these years, I have never been into converting anyone to atheism unlike any other religion. All these years, I have only faced imposition of a particular religion just because I’m born into a family that follows that fandom.

Let me put it in a perspective. What if you visit me in my house and ask for my son and I tell you that he is reading Harry Potter in the cupboard under the stairs because I’m a potterhead and I want my kid to do the same? It is so called harassment. So, forcing your children to follow a religion is a harassment too.

Now I have grown out of it and even though my parents have accepted me as an accidental daughter with disastrous ideologies, they occasionally make me visit temples and take part in any yaga that happens at home. And I do it for my parents half-heartedly. Sadly, their choice of temples is terrible and… suffocating. Their time for yaga is the time period of Earth I had never seen. With temples constantly becoming a business arena, I feel it’s against my definition which states that temples are places for silence and peace.

So, the next time I was asked to do something for them, I started questioning. Sometimes they had no reason. Sometimes, they had irrational reasons. Like framing women to be impure while on their periods. If you believe in God and God gifted me this natural periodic cycle of suffering, how am I impure?

I started talking to people with and without same opinion as mine. All I could derive out of it is that God is an invisible source of consolation. Prayer is not magically going to do anything but give a piece of relief. People who can be strong by themselves don’t seem to need one. So seeking God’s comfort is no harm. Problem arises when the religion comes in with a set of rules and regulations called customs and culture. I see religion as a huge obstacle for the growth of a nation or any individual.  Often, government promises to clean Ganga but never stops the people from dipping their sins in the river.Logically it can be argued that a person can build whatever he wants in his land but we need no tall Shiva statue in every freaking city.

Burqha is not a woman’s pride. It’s her choice. But if she chooses to wear a skirt, she shouldn’t be slut shamed or sexually abused just to restore the culture.

Gays and Lesbians are the hugely affected victims of our culture. Most of the people say that their religion doesn’t allow stuffs that other religions do and they are being a morally good person because they follow that particular religion. Excuse me! Do you see any atheist killing anyone because they eat beef? If religion is the one stopping you from harming other people, then, I’m sorry, you are not a good person.

I think the customs and traditions are for those who are rich with commodities so they can waste milk and water over a stone deity. As much as one can argue that religion can make a person morally acceptable, it can also be stated that religion brings hatred and makes a person inhuman. I don’t need to gather my guts to tell that religion confines women in a cage and abuses them. I have no hard feeling for women who can live with their religion only until they never thrust it upon others.

I’m not saying that atheism is a way to peaceful life. But I just have one simple question:

How can religion be  the way of life when it gives no freedom meant for life?

Written by: Swathi Mohan, Fourth year, Aerospace Engineering.

One thought on “Alice in Irrational Land

  • More forward and rational opinion. Well done Swathi Mohan. Atheism is not against people who worship gods or the gods, but against practices and beliefs against humanity and freedom of any living being. I am so proud and happy to see someone like me and let’s keep our fingers crossed!

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