Everything that is born will die one day. This notion applies to intangible things like ideas, suggestions, and religion as well. Only ego doesn’t die when you die. It passes from you to your parents, spouse, children, students, disciples, and anyone who comes in contact with you. Since it doesn’t die, it rots. And anything that rots isn’t worth saving. It isn’t worth protecting. It should be thrown away immediately.
The following example depicts this beautifully.
Consider a dilapidated house.
What do you do with it?
You try saving it from falling. You protect it from crumbling.
And how do you do that?
You whitewash it on Diwali. You repaint it on Holi. You reconstruct the crevices on the ceiling and rebuild the cracks on the floor. You keep on changing it from one form to another. You think that by making little adjustments, the house will become new.
No. It won’t.
It will LOOK new. It will APPEAR new. But it will certainly not BE new.
Because the plot, the ground, the soil on which the house stands is not strong enough to hold the house’s weight. The house is sinking. Only for a few more days will these temporary patches keep the house erect. Only for a few more days…. And then it will fall. It will crumble.
Then you will think of selling the plot. Somebody will buy it. But the new owner will not be in haste. He will not start building the house immediately. He will allow the soil, the sand, the whole plot to regain its lost fertility, its lost strength.
After a few months or years, he will start constructing a new house. This house will remain intact for a long time. There will be no need to whitewash, reconstruct, or repaint it from time to time. It will not require frequent repairs. It will gleam and will become a landmark of the locality. People will say: “Go straight and take a left turn. You will see a big and beautiful house. The temple that you want to visit is just next to it.”
The new house will become more important than the temple, the church, and the mosque. Whether you reach the temple or not, you will stop and take a peek of the new house. You will take pictures and share them with your friends and families. You will not talk about the temple that took you more than 2 hours to locate, but you will definitely talk about the beautiful house.
Few years down the line, the new house will lose its shine. It will become old. It will require frequent repair, repaint, reconstruction, and whitewash, just like its predecessor. This is when the owner should demolish the house and sell the plot to a new owner.
The same thing applies to religion. In the beginning, it becomes the center of attention and attracts people from far and wide places. People sing and dance and share the message with their friends and families. It is because the religion is alive. Its soil is fertile and has the strength to support its adherents’ aspirations.
But slowly, with time, the religious principles turn into philosophies. Philosophies are dead. They are like old houses. They have numerous crevices and cracks that require frequent repair. The soil isn’t fertile anymore. It no longer has the power to fulfill people’s aspirations.
The religion is about to crumble. It has lost its shine. But the adherents try making amendments. They create dogmas and doctrines to fill life inside the dying religion. So the religion starts operating like a Frankenstein — the body is alive, but there is no soul inside it. This gives rise to traditions. Traditions are dead. And they rip the remaining aliveness in the religion. People forget to sing and dance. They become serious. They attack those who criticize their dogmas. They lose their individuality and turn into a mob. The doctrines are like blinkers that don’t allow the adherents to look either backward or sideways.
Every religion requires transformation. An avatar, a messiah, a prophet, a Buddha, a Christ, a Muhammad, a Nanak, a Moses is always needed. No word of god is the final word. No incarnation is the last incarnation.
Religion is alive only for a short time. Once it starts losing its shine, once it is no longer alive, once the adherents become serious, it’s time to burn the religion. It’s time to bury it for good. And this should be done by every member of society. Because even if there is a single person who stays out of it and carries the anger and jealousy within, he will take revenge. He will do everything in his power to attack you, to kill you. He will avenge his ego. So this must be a collective effort.