A Code of Conduct for Rationalists

Prabhakar Kamath

A rationalist’s approach to educating the deluded masses should be rational and not emotional.

Many rationalists are so incensed by the behavior of the religious fanatics that they become emotional in their retort. Emotional reaction invariably diminishes the logic of the rationalist. Very often the rationalists have their own emotional baggage, which comes in the way of calm, rational approach to addressing this problem.

A rationalist should have been born in the same religion that he wants to reform or undermine.

A Hindu rationalist cannot reason with a Muslim religionist and vice versa. His wisdom will be immediately discounted by virtue of the fact that he is of another religion.

For a rationalist to succeed in converting fanatics of his former religion, he must first show his authority on the scriptures of that religion, which are the basis of irrational beliefs and rituals.

The authority to change other people’s beliefs comes only to those people who have demonstrated high level of knowledge on the subject they are talking about. If the rationalist knows little about the scriptures, those who claim to know more than him would discount his ideas. A “Brahmin” rationalist who has mastered the scriptures has far better chance of showing the fraud of scriptures than a non-Brahmin who does not even have a rudimentary knowledge of them. It took Gorbachov, an ultimate insider, to topple Communism in Russia. It took Nixon, an ultimate conservative, to change the attitude of Americans toward Chinese.  One has to be an insider to show the irrationality of a given religion.

A rationalist must undermine the scriptures by giving concrete examples of fraud by vested interests, not just being dismissive of them off hand.

More often than not, a rationalist just gives his opinion about the wrongfulness of the delusion of religious people. This means he is entitled to his opinion and the religionist is entitled to his. End of progress.

A rationalist should resort to Constitutional measures to bring the fanatics to justice when they indulge in hateful behavior towards dissidents.

Deluded fanatics are obviously irrational people whose Constitution is their religion. They are living in the past. Religion was the Constitution (LAW, DHARMA) in the ancient times. Now we have a Constitution of the Nation, applicable to all religions. Rationalist’s approach should be strictly Constitutional and rational.

Courtesy: http://www.carvaka4india.com/2012/02/code-of-conduct-for-rationalists.html