Is humanity the greatest religion?

11. Is humanity the greatest religion?

In recent times, so-called seculars and revisionists often say that 'Humanity' is above all religions, humanity is greatest of all religions, etc. However they miss the basic point and the purport of vedAnta. This only shows the ignorance about what Hindu Dharma is, specially what the word 'shAstra' means or covers. shAstra does not simply mean parroting verses or doing rituals and rigidly holding onto obscure, outdated and orthodox beliefs. Adi Sankara (ShrI Adi SankarAcArya jI, one of the greatest saint who revived our eternal vedic tradition) says that if there were no shAstra-s (canonical scriptures) then there would be no difference between humans and animals i.e. humans would be living animal-like life without shAstra-s. Contradictory to popular belief that 'humanity' is the greatest religion, it is the scriptures that makes us live like humans. Humanity is just one aspect of scriptures, it is not the end of road.  Abiding in peace & bliss and in non-dual state of consciousness is the supreme goal of Life. The unborn supreme reality of SD is called as brahman, which is sat (truth), chit (pure consciousness) and Anand (eternal bliss). Corrupt practices, rigidity, misunderstanding of shAstra-s and committing crimes in the name of SD does not make SD the religion of forest dwellers. The very path of advaita is such that violence will automatically drop from the heart of meditator. bhagavAn in gItA asks us to stay neutral to likes and dislikes, develop 6 qualities like restrain and control of mind, have patience, have faith, etc, and develop fourfold qualities like

  1. discrimination (viveka),

  2. dispassion (vairAGYa),

  3. six qualities (shaTsampatti) and

  4. mumukshatva (burning desire for liberation).

(shaTsampatti) six qualities as mentioned in viveka chuDAmaNI are

  1. shama (control over senses),

  2. dama (control over mind),

  3. uparati (saturation, patience)

  4. titikshA (staying neutral to likes and dislikes)

  5. shraddhA (faith in guru, God, scriptures and yourself. You must keep faith in your decision to progress spiritually)

  6. samAdhAna (to stay in a focused state of samAdhi or to stayed focused on goal)

An vedAntin detaches himself / herself from external and internal (mental) objects and desires. It is an established fact that as sattva guNa (mode of goodness) increases, divine qualities like compassion, forgiveness, unconditional love, peace, etc) increases and becomes predominant guNa while lower animal qualities gradually fades away. Hence there is no question of a vedAntin practicing or preaching violence. Here the word ‘violence’ means to act or think with the intention of hurting or destroying others. ‘Violence’ is the destructive approach of life. We must not take words literally and argue that even breathing is violence as it kills microorganisms. This is explained in detail in later section ‘Nonviolence and Vegetarianism’. To understand in a better way, one has to live vedAntic life under proper guidance of a guru or an AchArya. What matters is how much is implemented in our practical life and not what is parrotted.

Now let us try to understand what are the core philosophies of Hinduism