We need to dis­cover re­li­gion

The Sunday Guardian - - & Comment Analysis - By Maulana Wahidud­din Khan

Sir Isaac New­ton (1642-1727) was born into a Chris­tian fam­ily. A reg­u­lar church-goer, he can be said to have been a re­li­gious man in ev­ery sense of the word. But he is known to the world as a ‘sci­en­tist’ and not as a man of re­li­gion.

The same is true of most sci­en­tists. Most of them have, in their per­sonal lives, been re­li­gious men.

But the thing that these sci­en­tists pre­sented to the world was science, not their an­ces­tral re­li­gion. They spent their whole lives delv­ing into the mys­ter­ies of science and de­voted their en­er­gies to hand­ing the re­sults of their en­deav­ors on to the world.

Why is it that these peo­ple be­came fa­mous as sci­en­tists, rather than as men of re­li­gion? The rea­son is that re­li­gion was some­thing that they had in­her­ited from their an­ces­tors, whereas science came to them as a discovery.

One can never de­velop ar­dent en­thu­si­asm for one’s ance-stral in­her­i­tance. Some­thing one dis­cov­ers, on the other hand, be­comes one’s great­est trea­sure. One feels one can­not sur­vive with­out pre­sent­ing it to the world.

To­day there are mil­lions of peo­ple in the world who re­gard them­selves as re­li­gious. In spite of this, we find that re­li­gion does not play an ac­tive part in their lives.

The rea­son for this can be traced to the fact that re­li­gion came to them as an in­her­i­tance, not as a discovery. If they them­selves had dis­cov­ered the re­li­gion they ad­hered to, they could not but have pro­claimed it to the rest of the world. But those who re­ceive re­li­gion as a legacy, and do not make it a con­scious find­ing of their own, will not be moved by their faith in this man­ner. They will be like so many other “New­tons” who be­lieve in one re­li­gion or the other, while their en­er­gies and en­thu­si­asm are di­rected to­wards other fields be­sides re­li­gion. www.cps­global.org

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