Science Creates Superstition

New Philosophy of Life
Written by Okada Jikan Mokichi, 1950

Journalists assume as usual that all new religions are superstitious and evil. They act as if a fool always tries to show off the only thing they know. They just say it is disgraceful that evil religions full of superstition take advantage of the confusion after the end of the war and confuse people. However, they never mention why they appeared. They never consider its reason, either. They just regard all new religions as evil ones and judge them only with people’s gossip and their own decisions. I am just astonished at how simple they decide things. Therefore, we are painfully aware that we have to enlighten them a lot, which is one of our responsibilities.

Despite that, we don’t think to deny their attitude sweepingly. That happens due to their basic idea of seeing things materialistically. They assure that all invisible things are superstitions. If we had the same idea as theirs, we would do the same things as they do. However, what if people deny the existence of all invisible things? What would happen in the world? Because of materialism, the world would be seriously in trouble. People would judge everything by interest and calculation; affection and love between humans and relationships among nearest relatives and so on. Society will become like a stone-cold prison. Even journalists would never wish such a world. If they don’t, their idea is half-hearted and not completed.

When we objectively look at the real world, many superstitions unexpectedly exist among intelligent people who earned higher education. I have seen a chart that shows types of superstitions all over the world. The largest number of superstitions exist in Germany where scientific education is supposed to be most thriving. In this way, the number of superstitions is proportional to the development of science. This should be noted. Then why so? In our view, people, who got material education at school for a long time, experience a lot of things that don’t make sense when becoming a member of society after graduation. Material education is based on reason but they experience unreasonable things in society. Most of them are consequently confused and sceptical. The more they try to do things reasonably, the worse result they get. Then the wise people think that they should learn what is called a ‘study of society.’ However, there is no school where they can learn it. Therefore, they started to learn it by themselves. It takes a few years or decades at the longest for them to finish learning it. That is the so-called second study. This second study is practical and reliable, which is almost opposite to the first one that they have learned at school. When they apply the second study in a society, it works very well. Those who can do it well become what we call the doctor of sociology. They become a worldly-wise person who has tasted the sweets and bitters in life. However, they would be already in their old age by that time. Most of them cannot reach the outstanding stage just one step away after all. Even so, some would become outstanding great ‘doctors.’ For example, Prime Minister Yoshida is one of them. It is proved by his worldly-wise and insolent manner and experienced diplomacy.

When reading what I described above, you would understand what causes superstition. When people put the theory into practice, they found that it fails. They consequently become sceptical about the theory that they believe absolutely. In that case, they tend to go in for superstitious religions. However, there are almost no religions that truly solve their problem. If that is the case, the theory itself has a problem because it is far from reality. Considering those, you cannot deny that modern scientific education has one aspect to create superstition.

Before concluding my writing, I have to tell you one more thing. As journalists say, we admit that superstitious evil religions are certainly flooded today. However, they are wrong if they assume that all new religions are superstitious. There must be some non-superstitious religions. If someone affirms that something is superstitious even though it is not, this is a kind of superstition. We would like to warn them of this. Therefore, we request the following of journalists; it is all right that they criticize superstitious religions but dangerous that they take non-superstitious ones as superstitious. If they do the latter, they hinder cultural progress.

Translated by N.H.