The Role of Religion in Human Development
Religion has been destructively criticized and is still passing through criticisms. This is due largely to the sufferings and devastated situations humanity has passed through over the centuries as a result of many wars caused or justified by religion. The Islamic Jihads, the Crusades, the European Religious Wars, are some of the examples. It was on the instances of the above negative manifestations Bertrand Russell, regards religion as a source of untold misery to the human race. This research aimed at discovering the positive contributions of religion in civilizing humanity. To achieve this objective, historical method was adopted and data were collected from journals, articles, textbooks, internet sources and magazines. The finding indicated that although religion has been seen as a source of worry to humanity, it has played enormous role in the sand of history in the development of humanity. Religion laid the foundations of formal education and library system, university institutions, the cultural foundations of Europe, Arab and numerous countries of the world. It also contributed to scientific discoveries and technological innovations. Religion laid the foundation for the sanctity of human life, fundamental equality of all men, man’s liberty, antislavery and abolitionist attitude, religious freedom, domestic stability and favourable attitude to work. The study recommended that religious leaders should as a matter of urgency and commitment review the tenets and creeds of their religions and get rid of anything that tends to erode their cherished value of human development and focus more on their works of civilizing humanity.