Ascription to Supernatural Beings is merely due to man’s ignorance combined with his passion for some sort of explanation.
Subsequent research carried out in the field of psychology further strengthened this point of view, as it revealed that religion is the creation of man’s subconscious self rather than the discovery of some external reality. In the words of a western scholar: “God is nothing but a projection of man on a cosmic screen.” The concept of another world was nothing but “a beautiful idealisation of human wishes.”
Divine inspiration and revelation were merely an “extraordinary expression of the childhood repressions.”
All these ideas are based on the premise that there is something called the subconscious. Modern research has revealed that the human mind is divided into two major parts, one being termed the conscious mind, the centre of those of our ideas, which take shape in a state of consciousness. The other part is the subconscious. In this part of the mind, ideas are not usually alive in the memory, but exist below the surface and find expression either in abnormal circumstances, or in sleep, in the form of dreams. Most human thoughts are buried in this subconscious cell, the conscious part of the mind being the smaller part. The subconscious is like the eight-ninths of the iceberg, which remain below water, while only one ninth, the conscious part, is visible.
After extensive research in psychology, Freud discovered that, during childhood, certain happenings and ideas are repressed in our unconscious minds, which can later result in the irrational behaviour of adults. The same applies to the religious concepts of the hereafter, heaven, hell, etc., which are but echoes of those very wishes which were born in the child’s mind but never fulfilled, circumstances being unfavourable, and consequently, repressed in the subconscious. Later, the subconscious, for its own satisfaction, supposed the existence of a dream world in which its unfulfilled wishes would be realized, just as, deep in sleep, one dreams of wishes coming miraculously true. When childhood fancies, which had been thoroughly repressed, suddenly burst through to the surface, producing a state of frenzy or hysteria, or other abnormal behaviour, people mistakenly attributed this to supernatural forces, which had found expression in human language. Similarly, the generation gap and the ‘Father complex’ in a family gave rise to the concept of God and slave. Thus what was simply a social malaise was carried to the cosmic scale in order to forge a theory. In the words of Ralph Linton:
The Hebrew picture of an all-powerful deity who could only be placated by complete submission and protestations of devotion, no matter how unjust his acts might appear, was a direct outgrowth of this general Semitic family situation. Another product of the exaggerated superego to which it gave rise was the elaborate system of taboos relating to every aspect of behaviour. One system of this sort has been recorded and confided in the Laws of Moses. All Semitic tribes had similar series of regulation differing only in content. Such codes provided those who kept them with a sense of security, comparable to that of the good child who is able to remember everything that his father ever told him not to do and carefully abstains from doing it. The Hebrew Yahveh was a portrait of the Semitic father with his patriarchal authoritarian qualities abstracted and exaggerated. Such a judicial concept which believes in God being a political authority has occupied a central place not only in Judaism, but is also incorporated in the religious concepts of Christianity and Islam as well.
To be continued, Insha Allah…
AGE OF LOGICAL POSITIVISM
THE WORLD OF PHYSICS