This week on our religious tour we shall have a look at “SIN”. In all religions across the globe sin is generally defined as “missing the mark” set by a supreme and virtuous being called God. Sin offers a contrast to a righteous life and man has to learn to make choices between evil and good throughout his life. Religion offers a desirable atmosphere in which all people can live in calm and conflict free society. It helps man apply his discretion to assess which option is worth taking.
According to the Mahabharata in Hinduism, the root of all sin is covetousness (jealousy) for it erodes all judgment. And the Manu Smriti further tells us that the motive and emotions shown when doing anything is what makes a person perfect for there is an element of both good and evil in every action made by man.
Crossing the bridge over to Islam, we are told that sin can be categorized in five types which are basically rated as big sins and small sins and redemption is assured to one who commits smaller sins only, as written in the Quran: “If you avoid great sins (kaba’ir or dhanb) which are forbidden you, We will remit from you your evil deeds (sayyi’a).”
— Quran 12: 29
Christianity on the other hand tells us that even failure to perform any pious act in any situation can deny one access to the blissful home in the afterlife called heaven as inferred from the Parable of Lazarus and the Rich man.
A glance at this scratch from these 3 religions, you have no doubt noted that an aspect of planning for a better future by believers is noticeable. Thus sin helps us set boundaries for our actions and enables us to be concerned about the implications of our actions on other human beings and our future. By avoiding sin, one improves on his psychological abilities of decision making and enables one to use his foresight in every situation; a skill evident in all geniuses