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Six Reasons for the Practice of Religion

Categories: Yoga System
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About Course

Due to the rise of atheism in recent times, many people consider religion obsolete. The atheistic idea of religion is tightly bound to the existence of a transcendent being who grants an eternal life in heaven, for which, they claim, “scientific evidence” doesn’t exist—their conception of “science” being restricted to instrument observation. But religion is not limited to a transcendent being and eternal life in heaven, although it is one of the six reasons for which religion is practiced. There are five other reasons for the prevalence of religion—(a) the quest for a natural order, (b) the acquisition of personal mastery, (c) guidance on moral behavior, (d) leading a purposeful life, and (e) unparalleled happiness.

In this course, we will see why “science” (defined as instrument measurement and speculative theories used to explain the data) fails in all six areas making religion an eternally necessary process. We will then connect these six reasons for religion to a six-fold ladder of yoga found in the Vedic system. By accommodating these six reasons on a ladder, the Vedic system becomes the complete religion.

The term religion comes from the Latin religare which means “to bind”. The closest equivalent to that term in the Vedic system is yoga which means “to join”. The thing to which an individual is joined can vary. The acts of joining or binding can be contrasted to the idea of separation in modern science by which reality is conceived of as disparate, disjointed, and independent parts. Yoga and religion are opposed to science because science tries to divide reality into parts while yoga and religion integrate it into a whole.

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Course Content

The Six Reasons for Religion

  • The Quest for Natural Order
  • The Quest for Personal Mastery
  • The Quest for Moral Guidance
  • The Quest for Meaningful Life
  • The Quest for Ecstatic Bliss
  • The Quest for Eternal Life

The Six Forms of Yoga Practice

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