Philosophy plays a singular role in religion. Religion teaches and advocates virtues, such as love, truth, faith and trust, all of which are covered by philosophers since time immemorial. The ancient prophets were, not only deeply involved in monotheism and spirituality, within the scope of religion, but also preached the importance of good deeds, all of which are reflected in philosophies of life. Ordinarily, a religious person does not consider himself to be a philosopher, but, as a matter of fact, his beliefs are entwined with principles by which human beings should be guided. In religion, love and godliness are the wellsprings of spirituality that emanates from the knowledge that life should be lived within the bounds of faith, truth and morality. Virtues such as these are incorporated in various books on philoosophy which is the study of knowledge that is linked to the study of the tenets of religion, advocating similar principles that are attributed to belief in God who is the center of organized religion. For instance, the study of the meaning of life, Nature and the world, in general, is a branch of philosolphy known as Metaphysics. The studies of reasoning, ethics, aesthetics and epistemology are branches pf philosophy that are also reflected in religion, both directly and indirectly.
Philosophers are considered to be lovers of wisdom and so were the prophets and those of the bible, whose principles encompassed the studies of ancient philosophers, as well as those of the present. The teachings of the ancient Greek philospher, Thales, were, in essence, followed as a religion, and so were the philosophies of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle. The great philosophers of the Middle Ages were concerned with religion Many of them were Christian and some were followers of the Mohammedan religion. All these philosophers thought deeply about the relationship of man to God, and about ethics, how man should behave, and what he should believe. The study of God is theology, a branch of philosophy.
Philosophers that are preoccupied with branches of philosophy that explain man’s dependence on principles by which his life can be enriched, in relation to God, may not wear the garb of spirituality, but are, deeply involved in the study of principles that are akin to those studied by those that are religious. In other words, philosophers understand the meaning of life no less than a deeply religious person does, and vice versa.
The religions of southern and eastern Asia, such as Buddhism and Hinduism also advocate love, peace and brotherhood and like Judaism, Christianity and Islam, adhere to principles and virtues that are commonly philosophical, reflecting the importance of life that must be attuned to spiritual needs.