The role of religion in shaping human life cannot be overemphasized. For ages, religion has been the connection between man and his quest for answers to some of the questions which concerns his existence. In fact, religion has played a central role in answering the fundamental question that shed light on the place of man in the world. While there are many religions in the world such as Hindu, Hinduism, Buddhism, Toasim, Confucianism, Islam, Christianity, Judaism, and Zoroastrianism, they all strive to answer questions on why man suffers and how can it be avoided, genesis of human existence, why the fight between good and evil, why are illusions in life, what is the human being, what happens after life and why man must devote to help others around them.
Smith in his work explored the different aspects of world religions which define the central questions that form part of the numerous religious teaching. In every form of religion questions that surrounds the issue of human existence emanate and these religions attempts to solve them. The question of why humans suffer has been the emphasis of several religions which have made explicit attempt to answer them. More specifically, the question has been why human suffer and if the suffering will have an end. For a religion like Christianity, it has argued out that the suffering of man is as a result of sin that came into the world through the unbelief of Jehovah’s word. In addition, Christianity points out man emancipation will only come about when God triumphs over evil.
This question of man suffering has been addressed differently in Buddhism which asserts the notion that the suffering of humans is because humans lack the diligence and efforts to save themselves. This explains the reason why Buddhism believes that humans have a role to save themselves by their own effort rather than relying on any external agency for help.
The genesis of human life has been a puzzle that religion has made an attempt of addressing. The question on the genesis of human has been unraveled by different each pointing to a fundamental reason as an answer to this question. Islam contends that human life came from the creation of Allah where he created life from water. Moreover, Islam affirms that human life came to being as a result of special creation of Adam and Eve who were placed by Allah in this world to subdue.
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The question on the fight between evil and good human has been illuminated by religions each striving to explain it nexus with human existence. The reason behind the fight between evil and good has been addressed in religions like Hindu which describes the strain between good and evil as a problem of injustice (Smith, 2009). Specifically, Hindu religion asserts that while God is just, evil is a form of injustice that clouds the existence of man. This answer brings consolation to those who believe in the tenets of Hindu as a religion of their choice. This answer explains the question surrounding the struggle that characterizes the life of humans by giving an answer to its existence.
Religions have also been instrumental in giving an answer surrounding what happens after human life. In other words, what takes place at the end of human existence? According to the Zoroastrianism religion, the soul of man takes a journey after the death through a process where man’s actions are evaluated before judgment is pronounced on them. From the answers provided above, it is evident that religion plays a critical role in shaping the understanding of human existence. This explains why people regard religion as an answer to the myriad of uncertainties that characterize human life.