Religion on Trial
With the growing uproar and turbulence all across the country leading to public unrest and chaos aftermath the conviction and award of punishment to flamboyant spiritual Guru Gurmeet Ram Raheem, the whole country is left with many implicating question. Some of the questions haunting most of the minds are” Has religion become the opium of the mass? Are all spiritual gurus fake? What role does religion play in the modern scenario?” Taking a bird eye view with the purpose of imparting knowledge to the people is of prime importance in this crucial juncture.
Treating the cataract in religion
Before we delve deep into this subject matter and try to take some insights into it, we must understand the fact that just as if one doctor is proven fake, then this does not mean that all doctors are bogus. Similarly, if one Guru is found guilty, one must not presume and pass a prejudice judgement which advocates that all Gurus are cheaters. Neither one should think that because some Gurus are not genuine, therefore one should reject all the spiritual teachers and preceptors. If there is cataract in the eye, then the solution is not to remove the eye but to treat the cataract. It’s a fact that due to the powerful influence of the age of kali and rising demand of the bogus propaganda, many swindlers have come up in the recent decades who have betrayed thousands of followers thus leading to the situation where many genuine followers of religion had their soft faith shattered. That’s why, Srila Prabhupada, the Founder Acarya of ISKCON, while interacting with his followers, often quipped” Who is the new God this week?” Now, who is genuine and who is spurious, that’s a completely different subject matter and we can only give time some time to decide. Here, one thing about which everyone can be rest assured is the fact that whoever will try to dissuade people from the real path will surely be caught in the noose and subsequently lose all the assets namely followers, wealth and prestige associated with him. When demonetization also took place in India last year and sudden invalidation of currency took place, the entire fake lost its value. One of the purposes of the action was to deal with fake currency and after this; all fake notes were out of the system. So, the same can be with us and others. When the Lord in the form of time will show his prowess, only those who are genuine will survive and the bogus will get swayed away by the insurmountable power of time.
Media under Scanner
However, one more factor that need to be taken into account is the role of media. The integrity of Media has been time and again put under the scanner and there have been incidents time and again where media was charged with the allegation of biased reporting. Let’s take a deeper look into this: In the last few years, many Christians missionaries and preachers also have fallen prey to the charges of sexual harassment, molestation, misappropriation etc. But never such incidents are reported in media and even if reported occasionally, they are seldom discussed but whenever a Hindu Guru or spiritual leader fall, that becomes the most spicy stuff of coverage and is made to spread like wildfire among people. Is this not a point on which we need to ponder very seriously? We do and if one will put his thinking cap on, he will definitely find startling conclusions. That’s why; many thinkers have termed this biased media as ‘Presstitues’.
Final resort: Rekindling Wisdom
Now, with so many reasons to doubt on truth, the question still remains: Are we doomed to live in ignorance? No. In fact, if we take shelter of Lord by hearing his message, reading wisdom literatures and chanting his holy names following the path of Arjuna who was similarly perplexed on the battlefield of Kurukshetra, we will also find our doubts being dispelled with the torchlight of knowledge as Lord Krishna promises in Bhagavad Gita 10.10: To show them special mercy, I, dwelling in their hearts, destroy with the shining lamp of knowledge the darkness born of ignorance.