Tuesday, February 26, 2008

God's Outside Shovelling Snow

My daughter Soriah asked me how God created the Universe and this is what I said to her. That everything, thought, feelings, matter, creation, the Universe, was Energy; even, God. And God created Energy and Energy created God. Which helps, I hope, those who ask if God created the Universe, then who or what created God?

I suggest this circular exercise as a way of understanding God; because the hierarchists who see God as the ultimate also try to answer that question by saying well, God always was, which any child can see the fallacy thereof. Energy created God and God created Energy might better illustrate what I'm trying to show; except I don't want to provide easy answers to the lazy of mind. That's what religion does, and even philosophy, providing labels and rules of conduct that seem, on close inspection, to be whack (way out of :)

I note that religious texts are long when it come to telling you what to do but short when it comes to describing the ultimate. In other words, how can you use limited human understanding to define what has no limitations? And the holy books, while divinely inspired, are filtered through human consciousness, and therefore have holes in them. As the finest examples of literature, I love them, even the atheistic writings of Phillip Pullman and the Buddhists, even, the Gnostic library.

But this is what I say, in simple language instead of the complicated verbal structures of the religiosi. God is the creator of the Universe, but not the perfect, realised, being you would like him/her/it to be. What if God was perfect and imperfect, wasn't complete, but was, a slob just like us? (Joan Osborne)

Seeking completion, like us?

So who (or what) should we pray to? Ourselves (ye are gods) or God (we are nothing) ?

Just enjoy the ride. Ask what our purpose of existence is. To find, to understand, to experience, God. Then you'll see God everywhere, and in the everyday existence of all, without old men with white beards describing an old man with a white beard, or even a genuine saint like Paramahansa Yogananda describing a reflection of a reflected experience through his guru.

The Sufi Muslim quest to experience the ecstatic vision of God is the journey we must all undertake, even those who do not believe. Muslims believe that the night in Ramadhan, Laylatul Qadr, when the Prophet Muhammad flew to Jerusalem on his mystic steed Burak, has the power to bestow on believers the very same experience. My own mother had the experience of a Divine Light on that night, but I say, the least of you, has already had that experience and just need to be helped to see that.

So get this straight, God doesn't expect worship, or prayer, or fear. How you see God is a reflection of you, even if God isn't a reflection.

Oh, God exists, all right, whether you believe or not. God seeks only to help you see. Set Creation in motion and left the Universe to you. You created the rest yourself. (Even that is within God's purpose) If there was karma as a result of your actions, or inability to see, that was up to you. If you asked for help, you got it in one way or the other. That God loves you is for you to see. You can feel it in a hundred different ways, regardless of how much suffering there is.

Because, you see, God has chosen karma, and to be reborn, just like you. And lives, and suffers, just like you. To help you, God, incarnates here every once in a while. That has always been the promise. And if you should ever meet that being, you'll know. Not in a fireworks kind of way, but the light and peace you feel in that presence, and forever afterwards.

God comes as a soldier and a priest and a leader and a teacher and lover and child. You will see God in all of God's creation, but, if you look for that person here on Earth, then too will you find him. God is a woman in a man's form, a man seeking to find wholeness, a child that has the whole world before it.

What should you ask of God? Not a lottery win please. Not a perfect love nor a perfect world. That is yours already, if you know where to look. Maybe not now, but one day. And you are already within Gods' love, and may you have many many conversations with God, without talking to your own ego..

So if you ask, where's God, and why isn't he here to help sort out the world? Right now, he's outside, shovelling the snow.


Anonymous said...

The eternal Vedas describe the creation of the universe very explicitly, very exact, with names and numbers and in depth. Not lazy at all.
They describe how indeed everything is from and of 'God' the Person.
The entire material manifestation being the inferior material 'energy' of God. The superior energy being the spiritual energy of God and the living beings (us) being a combination of inferior (material) energy and superior (spiritual) energy. We are spirit covered by a material shell. Our choice so we can enjoy and suffer sense gratification. Trouble is, like most things, it ain't as great as it seems. In fact it's that age old adage of 'careful what you wish for.'
As for the source of 'God' and even our individual selves, well, I tend to believe what I hear from the source, from the words of God (Krishna) Himself. "Never was there a time when I, or you, did not exist and never will there be a time when I and you do not exist."
But hey, that's just me..

hp said...

Of course, the above was me.

Anonymous said...

Dear Naseer,
I need a change, please send me a prayer or good wish when you get a chance.

Loved the article. Thanks.

I'm very tired of intellectualists at the moment and have taken a couple of their comments personally so need a bit of time to re-group and get back to basics.

I hope your move is going well:)
Loving you dearly,

Man From Atlan said...

hp, so we agree, essentially. Especially your last sentiment. Except I don't see Matter as 'inferior', sorry. All part of God's creation. The Vedas are also better understood by us 'Brahmins' :) but first, they're an offshoot of the original Way Of Atlan, and secondly, we need to express religion and spirituality in simpler terms that every one can understand, and take to heart.
That people are lost and have forgotten the way is their karma and their choice, but not because they are inferior.
The Way of Atlan teaches us that God is a balance between the Material and the Spiritual.

Man From Atlan said...

CC, 'intellectualists', (present company excepted, of course :) are people who're searching, just like us all.
In the end only they can change themselves, and we can only try to show the Way.

Lalara said...

Where's God, and why isn't he here to help sort out the world? Right now, he's outside, shovelling the snow.

Beautiful, and so well put! Here are a few lines from the Upanishads which I thought might appeal to you and which seem to echo your thought:

"Thou art woman, thou art man.
Thou art the youth, thou art the maiden,
Thou art the old man tottering with his staff;
Thou facest everywhere.

Thou art the dark butterfly,
Thou art the green parrot with red eyes,
Thou art the thunder cloud, the seasons, the seas.
Without beginning art thou,
Beyond time, beyond space.
Thou art he from whom sprang
The three worlds."

— Svetasvatara Upanishad.
(Trans. by Swami Prabhavananda & Frederick Manchester).

Man From Atlan said...

A Sufi poet, Bulhe Shah (1680-1758 A. D.) captures this thought in the following Punjabi poem:
"Now I see the beautiful Friend
When the One was alone by itself,
sending no light to view
There was no God, Prophet or Allah
No Omnipotent or the Wrathful
The One was without any likeness or simile
Without any shape or form
Now he appears in shapes galore
Now I see the beautiful Friend"

Lalara said...

Do you have Sufi leanings, MFA? Just wondered. I thought you had your own eclectic worldview.

Xanadu said...

Hi MFA, it's me again, turning up like a bad penny!

If it's not too much to ask, could you give us the latest Xymphora news? We are avidly interested to know what's been going on. What's being happening on the site since our departure?

I can honestly tell you we have no access to the site on our home computer. Access has been blocked by my brother, and he alone has the password that would unblock it.

(This blocking was done with our consent, not because we hated the site but because we loved it too much. It was becoming addictive; and also the personal attacks were not helping.)

In retrospect, we acted irresponsibly, but in accordance with our own erratic natures. We were prepared to love everyone on the site, but did nor know how to deal with the spiteful animosity emanating from two particular posters — one male, one female.

We have accessed the site only very briefly 2-3 times on a friend's computer and have noticed big changes. Very few posters, very few comments compared to the old days, and an insistence on an email address — which is always, in my opinion, a deterrent to posting.

A final question, MFA, and please give me a frank answer: Would it be safe for me and Lalara to return, if we were so minded, or would we encounter the same hostility from the "usual suspects"?

We have no plans to return — not right now, anyway — and the question is purely hypothetical.

If we returned, moreover, we would post far less; and we would bend over backwards to avoid all irrelevancies, distractions, and neurotic histrionics.

Man From Atlan said...

I think Sufiism is a direction that Islam should have taken many centuries ago.
My view is not eclectic except as it pertains to a 'root' original philososphy. See my trilogy of articles: The Choice of Discipleship, and two more coming up, Whither Islam and Follow Me.
Xymphora has changed, and few original commenters remain.
Some (including me) would be happy to see you there, others might not. Ignore them, instead of trying so hard to be liked.

Lalara said...

Thanks for replying, MFA, to my brief comment on Sufism. Your wish to see Islam go in that direction is my wish too, but I can't see it happening — given that there's so much hostility to Sufism among certain fundamentalist sects. I once read a marvellous old book called Rabia the Mysic and that made a big impression on me. Also tried reading Idries Shah, whom my parents knew at Coombe Springs (Surrey), but didn't make much headway...

Xanadu said...

Sorry to hear that most of the old posters on Xymphora had jumped ship. I find that quite extraordinary. The last time I looked at the site, I did notice a dearth of posters (and comments) and wondered what on earth had happened to this once dynamic intellectual powerhouse.

My own view is that Xymphora would have done well to model his website on yours. Posting here is easy and immediate, without prior approval and the irritating time lapse entailed by such scrutiny. Nor do you insist on an email address, which is a definite deterrent to posting. You also allow posters to preview and edit their comments. And of course you remain free at all times to delete their posts if you wish, and you can block them if they become persistent nuisances. That's how it should be.

I trust you and your family are keeping in good health. I posted a short comment to you on MG's site the other day and I hope you read it. All best wishes.

Man From Atlan said...

Lalara, I also think it's too late for Sufiism, but perhaps individuals will do so in whatever shape take place in the next 3 years.
Xanadu,thanks for your well wishes, I don't see much taking place in political websites, but do try to help the friends I've made there.
Try a gmail account if you're concerned about privacy and want to come back there.

Xanadu said...

Thanks, MFA. We'll keep in touch, I hope. Please consider the "Silly Sisters" your friends. Or, at least, your unworthy, long-distance disciples. We look forward to reading your forthcoming articles.

Man From Atlan said...

Welcome. Articles posted. Enjoy.