Modern Trends in World Religions

By A. Eustace Haydon | Go to book overview

XXII
THE TASK OF HINDUISM

By K. NATARAJAN

THE task of religion in all ages has been, I believe, to assert the supremacy of the moral law over the lives of individuals and nations. Unfortunately most religions--I might almost say all religions--have in large measure disqualified themselves for performing this task. They have fallen to this unfortunate condition by allowing the secular world to dominate them. In other words, the great religions of the world have become corrupt and have lost the power of infusing the lives of men with moral enthusiasm.

It is said in one of our Hindu religious books that whenever the world deteriorates in this respect the Lord himself appears on earth to restore religion to its purity and power. The Hindu believes it. The Christian Bible also says that God has not left any nation without a witness. You may take this to mean that in times of need great prophets appear to restore religion to its purity and effectiveness. Therefore the first task of all religions in modern times seems to be to rehabilitate themselves, to regain the power of controlling men's actions and thoughts.

In this general statement of the task of modern religion I include the specific religion for which I speak. Hinduism is no exception to the rule. I firmly believe that the teachings of the Hindu religion are of the highest and purest kind. But the corruption of the best is sometimes the worst, and the Hindu religion has, in the course of centuries, become more corrupt than any other religion.

There is no time to enter into the causes which have led

-221-

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