Religion: A waste of time

The recent news of the Ayodhya verdict have started a spate of debates across all media (from NDTV to Facebook!).

That apart, so many discussions wherein people end up confusing religion and god. I thought it was high time I pen down my thoughts on the difference between the two and whenever such a discussion occurs, I’ll proceed to give the link instead of going into the details of explaining the difference (funda re-use!!).

All religions have been started by men in order to lay down a set of agreed upon rules and norms for their community. This community could be brought together through mutual agreement (pagans, hindus, etc) or by instilling fear. Fear of being a heretic (islam, christianity, etc). The details are irrelevant, since in either case one thing rings true – its a social construct.

A social construct which generally pre-supposes the presence of a superbeing to keep all the community within line of the norms. If you break the norms, your soul will rot in eternal hell/netherworld/underworld/etc. If you follow all the norms like a good little boy, then you have chance to enter heaven/valhalla/olympus/etc. All these created craftily to breed only one type of behavior from the masses –


Now this superbeing, is usually god (sometimes it is the devil), but most of the times; it is god.

You take away all these rules and faff (the stuff I generally call as कर्मकांड), and you are still left with god. So what good is god without religion.

A lot. The idea of god, gives us faith, the faith that even if one fails, by some miracle (and these do happen :)), the intended outcome will be met. God is faith, and that’s precisely why atheists and theists will keep on arguing about God … because each will not let go of their faith.

So for god’s sake don’t waste time on religion, but still keep the faith :)

Technology and Faith


It’s times like these when supporting a good cause gives you fulfillment. When you make a difference by adding to the cause … not monetarily, not through force but through faith.

A friend recently made the leap of faith from Windows to Ubuntu, you can read her first hand review here. It does include the slight apprehension, the initial teething problems … but the story also has elements which make it a good technology script … the need, the learning curve and the triumph!! Here’s an excerpt –

It’s been a month since I first grappled with the overly sensitive mouse pointer on my brand new OS. Having solved that and many other problems (whether by exploring the functionalities, or plain screaming murder at Prasad and Ankit – our IT-literate friends), I seem to have adjusted surprisingly well to it. Phantoms of Linux have turned out to be bigger than Linux itself. Its fast. Its intelligent (use it and you’ll see what I mean by that). It has multiple workspaces. Which means you can chat and browse on another workspace without those irritating colleagues, who have the habit of peering into your screen and shaking their judgmental heads, ever finding out! So far, so good!

The point I am trying to make is that often people will sit on the fence when their knowledge about a technical product is low, the goal then is not to push the product, but to give as much information as possible but wait for the user to make the leap of faith.

I see this happen at work almost every day … we call it creative faith. The technology involved may not be related to computers, but it can be as abstruse if not more. So, the next time you are involved in selling a complex solution, try some faith instead.



Me and Amit have been having this debate since the past 2 and a half years now. It’s on the existence of god … I take the side of the theists and Sharma takes the side of the atheists. In fact he has gotten so good at that that by now he is a moderator in one of such inane communities. I just believe in god. I cant prove god’s existence, its a premise for me. And its blind acceptance to that fact.

This weekend, I had been to my family’s guru’s ashram. I was going there after an absence of 12 years (not that I missed not going there). Whilst on the way, I was questioning the many practices followed there … no leather items, lower castes may not enter certain areas, lower castes have to wait for the brahmins to finish their meals, et al. My mother seemed to take this to heart, the next day when we were having a discussion with the high priest over there, she asked him this question about why no leather … and the explanation he gave … or rather the answer he gave set me thinking.

The disciple does not have to look at question or logic for answers, he needs to look at his faith for those answers. The moment we start looking at other sources than our own faith, we have lost our faith in that particular thing. Be it god, be it science, be it the paranormal. Mulder had faith in aliens, Scully had faith in science, I have faith in god … what do you have faith in?