New Vs Old Religion – In Abstract

New religions appears and may cross the lines that is considered sacrosanct by old religion.

Old religion can use force or allow the new religion to cross the lines considered sacrosanct.

Now when new religions “sacrosanct” lines are crossed, does it have the right to protest?

Concrete Example And the Challenge

New religion may say

  • Gods of old religion are false.
  • An “innocent” person from old religion will go to hell if the person doesn’t accept new religion. If a person is sent to hell by God, the person can never be “good”. Indirectly non-believers are bad.

Folks following the old religion may find the above things as crossing the red lines and may object. But this will prevent any reforms to come up, so not good for the society.

If new religion only says in some  text that it “respect” other religions but most of the time in a day criticizes the “Gods” of old religion, it will appear nothing but “lip service”. Most follower of new religion will have dis-respect for the old religion as that is what they have heard most of the time.

In other words, old religion if it draws “sacrosanct line”, new religion cannot come. God is the highest thing for a religion. If “God” of a religion can be criticized than new religion cannot draw any “sacrosanct line” that cannot be crossed.

In other words we cannot draw any “sacrosanct” line and God and religious figures like messenger of God, Saints etc. should be allowed to be criticized.

“Two Gandhi” – Solution to the challenge

It may appear that with no “sacrosanct” line we will be in strife. Not really. In polytheist culture like India, we hardly had any sacrosanct line. People have criticized anything without any fear of death. There has been violence but not for killing an individual for criticizing something.

One simple solution is to imagine a “Gandhian” leader for each of the group. Now think how the two “Gandhis” would have dealt with the situation. We will come to peaceful answers. Most of the time we are in problem as we just imagine one “Gandhi” for the polytheist’s group. Indeed we should ask all groups to live by “Gandhian” principle not just one group.

The strength of India is in ability to criticize anything without fear of death.


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