What is Religion? | Importance of Religion in Human Life | Purpose of Religion
What is Religion?
Religion is a set of organized views, practices, and systems that are most frequently associated with the belief in and worship of a supreme being, such as a personal God or another supernatural creature.
While this is a broad definition of religion, there are other interpretations, and not all faiths are centered on belief in a god, gods, or supernatural powers.
Religion applied widely to cultural ideas, worldviews, scriptures, prophecies, revelations, and morals that have spiritual significance for adherents of a specific faith and various behaviors such as sermons, rituals, prayer, holy meditation locations, symbols, trances, and feasts.
Diverse religions may or may not have a variety of aspects, including the divine, sacred objects, faith, a supernatural being or creatures, or “some type of ultimacy and transcendence that will supply rules and power for the remainder of existence.”
Purpose of Religion
Religion can be used for a variety of purposes. Religion can provide solace and direction. It can serve as a foundation for moral views and actions.
Additionally, it helps foster a sense of community and a connection to tradition. Some study suggests that it may possibly have a health effect.
Religion’s effect on health and life expectancy has long been a difficult topic of study. It appears (to some) that religious people—defined here as those who regularly attend religious services—are healthier than those who do not.
This has resulted in a line of research examining the impact of religion on health in order to ascertain whether religion has any beneficial effect on life expectancy. However, this research is challenging due to several aspects that are impossible to control, including the following:
- Individuals who regularly attend religious services may just be healthier than those who are unable to do so.
- The benefits may stem more from social interaction than from religion itself.
- Certain religions may promote healthy behaviors.
When researchers examine the effects of religion, they must take all of these factors into account and the possibility that religion itself affects health.
Why is Religion Important to Human life?
Religion plays a significant role in the lives of many people. Even those who are not particularly religious think it significant. Why do they feel this way? The reason for this is largely due to the conviction that society requires religion.
As a society, we benefit from our shared religious convictions. Indeed, many individuals would claim that we would be unable to operate without religion.
The primary reason for society’s need for religion is to control conduct. The majority of the rules we follow today are based on religious precepts.
While there is great discussion over whether religion is necessary to develop us into good people, what is undeniable is that the laws governing what is acceptable in society are essentially religious in nature. Without religion, virtually probably, we would live in a very different kind of society.
Importance of Religion: Why is Religion Important to Human life?
Religion performs the following functions:
1. Religion provides mental peace
Human life is inherently uncertain. We strive for survival in an uncertain world filled with fears, insecurities, and threats.
At times, we experience helplessness. Religion is what consoles and inspires us during times of adversity. Religion provides us with adequate refuge.
We achieve mental tranquillity and emotional support, which enables us to confront our lives and difficulties.
2. Religion gives us meaning
We are the products of evolution and genetics. As a result of both factors, we possess certain characteristics.
We are limited in what we can achieve. However, we also possess a great capacity for idealism and creativity. Religion gives us meaning.
It helps us to understand our origins and how we fit into the universe. We learn about our purpose, which assists us in developing ourselves into better people.
3. Religion provides Hope
Religion provides hope which allows us to believe in the future. Faith enables us to cope with the conditions of our lives and to develop positive expectations.
Religion is a source of strength and power that we need to face life’s challenges. Religion teaches us that we can move beyond our limits and become better people. Divinity gives us courage during difficult times.
4. Religion provides Social Interaction
Religion also serves as an arena for social interaction, a form of social control, and helps individuals deal with feelings of loneliness, depression, anxiety, and uncertainty.
Religion can be viewed as the glue that holds society together. Religion moderates conduct and provide guidelines for social behavior.
5. Religion offers Societies a Sense of Meaning /Sense of community and belonging
The need to feel a sense of purpose transcends all boundaries and cultures. Religion provides meaning and answers to such universal questions about where we came from, why we are here, what happens after death, and how we should deal with life’s challenges.
These questions continually arise in the minds of men, regardless of their society or culture.
6. Religion promotes social solidarity
In conditions of uncertainty, society needs a foundation of solidarity. The social cohesion that religion promotes fills this need. It helps us realize our commonality as human beings and unites us in a common faith.
Religion builds social networks, cements relationships, and establishes trust among people facilitating their dealings with each other. A sense of solidarity boosts morale during times of difficulty and provides support to those in need.
7. Religion influences our health
Health is another major aspect of life. Religious practices impact our health. Religion can promote good health by emphasizing such concepts as harmony and balance with nature, exercise, cleanliness, and moderation.
Through its emphasis on discipline and the moral framework, religion helps us to overcome bad habits like smoking, drinking, excessive eating, or substance abuse.
8. Religion provides an outlet for aggression
Religion also has a civilizing function in that it directs the aggressive impulses within us into more socially acceptable behavior.
The desire to impose our will on people by force is inhibited by religion. The worship of a god and the Ten Commandments are clear examples of this.
9. Religion offers us hope
Religion provides us with the hope that there is an after-life where we are judged and rewarded or else punished for our deeds in this life.
Our expectation of heaven enables us to deal with death much more effectively, particularly if we believe that our loved ones are waiting for us after death.
10. Religion Teaches goodwill and the golden rule
Religion teaches us to be good people in this life. The main idea it teaches us that it is wrong to do wrong things to other people.
In addition, we are taught how we should relate with our fellow human beings, which is often summed up in the golden rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
11. Religion enhances Selfless Service
Religion gives us an understanding of our relationship with our Creator. It awakens us to the fact that we all serve a greater purpose in the universe.
We realize we are all connected and that we can never really live as individuals but only through others. We serve God and society by serving people in need for no other reason than out of a sense of compassion and love.
12. Religion promotes Emotional and Psychological Well-Being
Religion helps people deal with emotions such as fear, loneliness, resentment, guilt, and anger. Religion provides several outlets for our emotions.
It stresses the importance of recognizing our feelings and acknowledging them rather than suppressing them. The various religious festivals and practices allow us an opportunity to express ourselves with joy, sorrow, hope, and forgiveness.
13. Religion provides Moral Guidance
Religion also teaches us what is right from wrong within our society and reminds us of our social responsibilities. It provides us with moral guidelines that provide the standards to which to hold our conduct.
14. Religion Promotes Understanding and Awareness
Religion offers us an opportunity to educate ourselves about culture and society and stimulate our minds so that we may develop a better understanding of religious, cultural, national, or racial differences.
Thus, religion serves as an instrument for the development of tolerance, goodwill, and respect for diversity. We should also be tolerant of those who do not share our beliefs or values.
15. Religion helps us to live our principles
Religion is something we do because it provides us with an opportunity to live according to our principles which we may not always be able to do otherwise. It is a way of serving God and man.
16. Religion helps build good Personal Relationships
The practice of religion also promotes good personal relationships, including self-development and interpersonal relationships with other worshippers and ethnic or religious groups.
Our sense of belonging and participation in a tradition or community stems from religion’s role in socialization.