Why Religion Today?

RELIGION IS A MEANS TO AN END. AS SUCH, IT MAY BE SEEN TO HAVE A DUAL PURPOSE.

Church of St. Francis, The Liberal Catholic Church FIRST, it should provide a workable and progressively uplifting philosophy of life. The word “philosophy” means love of wisdom. Wisdom may be considered to be the sum total of the experiences and knowledge gained during all of man’s past lives. Knowledge alone is the function of the lower mind. Wisdom reaches far above the lower mind. It involves the whole human being, including that understanding often attributed to man’s “heart-qualities.” Wisdom gives man that true perspective with which to discover the real purpose of life. It makes possible prudent, dispassionate, perfect judgment.

Religion, then, must have a place in daily life, building the honest, unselfish, tolerant human being and producing in him the preference for spiritual values over material excesses. While thus raising his awareness to see divine life in all of God’s creation and creatures, it yet aids him to attach proper values to everything in existence in the universe. Seen in this light, material means have their place and are necessary; but their utilization rather than their acquisition deserves primary attention.

An obvious expression of such a philosophy of life is found in man’s affinity for all Nature, a sign of a mature love and heartfelt respect for God’s creation. In the effort to understand even more fully Nature’s ways, man is helped by an eager intellect that directs his studies and interests toward the divine. Truth, being what it is to each person, enlightens him increasingly as his intuitive faculties unfold. Eventually he will know God “first hand.”

Philosophy of Life

Church of St. Francis, The Liberal Catholic Church
Church of St. Francis, The Liberal Catholic Church

The SECOND purpose of religion is to develop a realization of the divinity in humans. The root-meaning of the word “religion”— to bind back—refers to man’s basic oneness with the Deity. Man IS a divine being, “created in the image of God,” the spiritual image, that is! Religion sees in the Deity (God) a universal, all-embracing Being of abstract perfection. To “bind back” to Him implies man’s inner urge, his spiritual quest for his own perfection and resultant return to God. To achieve this he needs the experiences of many lives (incarnations) on earth. The “Laws of Nature,” all of which are divine laws, aid him in his unfoldment toward perfection. Among these laws one principle is fundamental: “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” (Gal. VI.7)

Divinity of Humans

Church of St. Francis, The Liberal Catholic Church
Church of St. Francis, The Liberal Catholic Church