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A Short story

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February 14, 2010

Okay, I have been writing a lot (no links due to obvious factor of anonymity) on software and of late more on pros and cons of Open Source and proprietary software. Then here, I had been writing onHitler and religious fanaticism (as you might have chanced upon). This has resulted in the concoction of a cocktail of thoughts and I started thinking how religion is like software today.

Islam is to religions what Microsoft is to software - predefined, and with proprietary verses.

Islam behaves like Microsoft as well – monopolistic and radical. There is little or no opportunity to work upon, modify and enhance the fundamentals. The whole operating system of Islam is the Koran - just like the Windows OS. You have everything on it. The mullahs define it and the laymen follow it blindly just like Microsoft gives its customers a finished product that does almost everything he wants his OS to do. It is very difficult to build add-ons or extensions unless Microsoft is literally forced to part with its source code.

Sufism was what I would term as Islam Lite. It flourished in the middle ages, but then the monopolistic practices of mainstream Islam killed it.

Compare that to say Firefox, god bless this browser. You can develop and users can add any number of extensions to Firefox.

Two more things on that:

i) Islam in religions is therefore like Microsoft in software biz – has a good popular finished product (read Windows OS) but without any scope for outside enhancement, modification, customization outside MS-set parameters.
ii) Modified Islam – like the Ahmadiyyas or the Imailis are often not recognized by mainstream Islam and look upon them as illegal and cracked versions of the main OS which was developed back in the 7th century.

Similarly, Roman Catholicism and Judaism are like proprietary software as well.

Hinduism on the other hand can be likened to true Open Source software. You have all the freedom to develop, change, modify, or even start new extensions based on the fundamental principals. There are hundreds of streams, cults, sub-faiths, off-shoot religions etc. You too can start your own cult and it would be perfectly accepted as a part of mainstream Hinduism. Not only that, with a little bit of 'kernel programming' with new philosophies, ideas and thoughts, you can start an entirely new religion – like SikhismJainism or Buddhism.

Other variants of Christianity too have similar Open Source qualities.

To end: I am looking forward to the days of open source religion – like Firefox, extensions including.

If you happen to read this, do let me know about your thoughts. Feel free to modify, enhance or edit whatever I said here in your comments. It would be very interesting to hear your views.


More entries: http://hind-java.in/, Concept of God in Hinduism, Open Source religion – a short proposal., Sanatana Dharma (1)

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