The role of religion is a vital one in the drama of human race. It deeply affects all aspects of human life.The socio-anthropomorphic study of the human race tells us that religion stands as the foundational stone of the human civilization. Therefore man needs religion to protect and perfect himself and his society in the eternal flux of this world process.
No doubt religion has taken many turns and tempests with different human communities at different periods of time. And because of different religious groups, the world has bled and suffered from the wars for years. But ultimately true Religion can alone give a meaning to humanity.
The need for religion should bring a devotion to a cause which will give our fragile and fugitive existence significance and value. In the age of science we need a religion which must be free from incredible dogmas and uncritical attitude towards life and must be free from low loves or low-hates.
The History of religion gives us a noble thinker of the 19th century, who had devoted all his life-time to find a scientific religion which is known as Dev Darma. In the Natural religion of Devatma, we find a scientific philosophy which is altruistic in character and bases itself on facts and laws of Nature. Scientific knowledge is taken to be the standard of true knowledge of whatever exists.
In the religious philosophy, Religion and ethics are not the same thing, though they are so intrinsically related. A good man of transparent virtues may not be religious at all. For a good man of transparent virtues may not be religious at all. For a good man to be religious he must have faith and love in a being, which is accepted as the highest. Religious life is not a life of love for a great cause or even the greatest cause. It must involve as essential to it, faith and love for some being –human or superhuman. I am defining religion in a manner to make room for classifying it into good and bad religions. I am defining it in evolutionary terms, so that there is sense of speaking of history of religion. Religious life implies as its in-expungable element faith and love for some being. It may be a stone, it may be a tree, it may be a statue, or a great man, God or the Devatma. there are false religions, which advocate faith and love of a being who is either a myth or unworthy in his character.
Let us be clear as to what is religious life-it is faith in and love of the guru and it is striving for altruistic life. When both of these things are present in an individual, he is religious. It is round these two ends of the pole that religious life revolves. The first is peculiar to religion. It is its differentia. Even if we raised to personality ethics, i.e. even if for argument’s sake, we are free from low-loves and low-hates and have developed altruistic loves, we are not religious. It is when we show faith in or love of bhagwan Devatma that we become religious. We can imagine for the sake of argument, that development of psychological techniques may one day help the society to have mature individuals free from passions and lusts and full of social virtues. Even then psychology would not have dispensed with religion. The greatest contribution of a religion is its leader who has in him worth which is worthy of faith and love.
Is it the highest development of a personality, to be good,i.e. to be free from low-loves and hates and to be imbued with and immersed in altruistic life? The answer is in the negative. The highest value for man is in loves and the highest love is the love of the Divine Being. In the love of the highest divine being, man touches the peak point of his destiny. Hence, it has been the soundest instinct of mankind and the natural culmination of all highest philosophy, to place highest value by love of the divine being. There have been errors as to the defining characteristics of the divine being, but there has been no error in the intuition of mankind to give the highest value to faith and love of the divine being.
So great and sublime is the experience of faith and love of the divine being that morality is made secondary to it. We ought to be free from low-loves and low-hates and cultivate altruistic feelings, for this helps us to keep out of the harm’s way to the humblest existence in the four kingdoms and makes us to be serviceable to all existences in hundreds of ways. But this is not all. The crown or glory of such moksha and Vikas, is that it opens the way for being in love with the master, to be Anuraagi Shishya.
If we understand that differentia of religion is love of the divine being, it will make it crystal clear why Devatma put faith in Him as the first condition of membership of Dev Samaj. This condition is intrinsic to religious life. A man may be free from all the eight gross sins. He is not religious. He may be altruistic. He is not religious. He may have gratitude for Devatma. he is not religious. This point can be made clear by the historical event of the revision of conditions of membership of Dev Samaj. These were disciple whose gratitude for the master was exceptional –they had rendered historic services to him. Yet these reverential and greateful disciples failed to sign the new membership form. The new form demanded faith in Devatma. This they felt wanting in them. This showed their life lacked the differentia of religious life –faith in and love for the Devatma. They had joined religion without being religious. They had missed the bus in life.
A Devatma is a soul, which is neither all powerful nor all knowing. But he is the soul, which is free from all weaknesses of human souls. There is no evil passion that touches His life and conduct and there is no altruistic feeling that is lacking in Him. He is the soul with new psychology. His urges are governed by the principles of truth and goodness. Every thought and act of His life is processed by these two principles and they bear the charm of unique quality.
It is this equipment of all-sided love of truth and goodness that had made Him so completely satisfaction to the souls which can open their window of worship to Him.
When a one opens the window of worship to Devatma, it enjoys the highest illumination and noblest purity nook and corner of its being to the limit of its climax.
Goodness awaits and yearns for the day when man will show faith in or love of Bhagwan Devatma. Then and then alone will man be religious, liberated and fully evolved.
And after touching this level, man does not want to be identical with his Guru even if he is offered to be Him. As best lover does not desire to be the beloved, even if he is offered to change his position. He wants to remain the lover to his beloved and contemplates on his or her beauty. So a best devotee desires nothing from his Guru. What he desires is to be in ecstatic love of his Guru and to lay everything at His feet, irrespective of what may happen to him.