Another friend has asked:
The things we want to destroy – such as the chains of blind faith or superstition – find even more confirmation in your talks. It seems, according to what you are saying, that there is life after death, that there are gods and there are ghosts, that there is transmigration of the soul. In that case, it would be difficult to get rid of superstitions; won’t they become even stronger?
Two things need to be understood here. One is: if something is accepted as a superstition without researching and investigating it properly, then that is tantamount to creating an even greater superstition; it shows a highly superstitious mind. One man believes there are ghosts and evil spirits and you call him superstitious; you believe there are none and that makes you feel that you are very knowledgeable. But the question is: what is superstition? If someone believes there are ghosts and evil spirits without any investigation, that is superstition; and if someone else believes there are no such things, without investigation, then that is superstition too. Superstition means believing something without knowing it to be true. Just because someone holds beliefs contrary to yours does not mean he is superstitious.
A believer in God can be as gullible as a nonbeliever. We must understand the definition of superstition. It means to believe in something blindly without verification. The Russians are superstitious atheists; the Indians are superstitious theists – both suffer from blind faith. The Russians have never cared to discover there is no God and then believed it to be so, nor have the Indians tried to ascertain that God is before believing it to be so. So do not be mistaken in thinking that theists alone are superstitious; atheists have their own superstitions too. And the strange thing is that there is also a scientific superstition. It sounds contradictory: how can there be a scientific superstition?
If you have studied geometry, you must have come across Euclid’s definition where he says a line has length but no breadth. Now, what can be more superstitious than this? There has never been a line with no breadth. Children are taught that a point has neither length nor breadth, and even the greatest scientist works on the assumption that a point has no length or breadth. Can a point exist without length and breadth?