Thursday, November 26, 2009

GOD, RELIGION, EXISTENCE, ILLUSION.........

If you become aware of God's presence within you and also the presence of the same God in all else,

There is nothing to equal the peace and joy that you get.

Sathya Sai Baba



Many a times I have wondered, thought, read, discussed and debated about God and how each and every thing in this universe is His creation, and is also a part of Him. I also notice that many of us blog on the subject of God and have our own interpretation of what He is like. All this is but an attempt to fathom the why, what, where, how of our existence and its relationship with God, or the Creator. We have many religions in this world - each attempting to answer questions that are eternal.

What is religion? A way to God. There is only one God - He has many different names though. If that be so, then it should be unifying and not divisive, because if the Creator is one then all paths should lead to Him and thus should be convergent, and seem to be so, to every thinking individual. Yet we have discussions based on our individual faiths and beliefs of how my God is better, or how my religion has the answers to all of mankind's questions, and how all the other answers are not correct because they do not correspond to my faith or beliefs. Atheists have their own point of view. They question, "Have you seen God"?

I believe in God and believe Him to be my source and my end, like everyone else's too. I also believe that I have seen glimpses of Him during my journey through this life. In April 2009, I had put the following comment on one post by D. This comment was in response to a question in the post, of what is my God like? An excerpt of the comment is reproduced in the next para.


"I know that God exists - I have felt His presence many a times, when no human was around to give me strength, direction or solace. I have seen Him in many different forms basically dependent on my emotions - sometimes in awe-inspiring moments when I stood to admire the majestic hills and snow capped mountains in the North or while flying over the vast expanse of the seas at 100 ft; sometimes I have seen Him in the pure blissful innocent smile of a little child; sometimes in the indescribable beauty of a woman; sometimes in the sounds of silence in a jungle; I too don't blame Him for "For the way my life has shaped up". I do believe in Karma and Newton's third law of motion. I also believe that my God is very personal". My God is personal and I believe, so is everyone else's too.

I was reading an article titled "Beauty of the Divine" by Benoy K Behl in the July - August issue of "India Perspectives" magazine today. The following few paragraphs about Indian art (and its connection with the divine) were so interesting that I thought of reproducing excerpts of the same on my blog. The author has put in words some thoughts that appeared absolutely magical to me. They talk of the Creator, His creation and our illusions (maaya) The paragraphs are reproduced below.

"The art of ancient India brings before us a vision of great compassion. It is a view of the world which sees a harmony in the whole of creation. It sees the same which is in each of us, in the animals, the flowers, the trees, the leaves and even the breeze which moves the leaves. All that there is, is seen to be a reflection of the One.

The phenomenal world of separated beings and objects seen around us is an illusion, perceived and brought to us by our senses. This information provided by our senses is of a personal and and not an objective nature. Absorbed in this, we are blinded to the reality beyond. The primary illusion is the perception of ourselves as individual entities, which leads us on a path of egoic existence. On this path, we are distanced from the truth.

The high purpose of life is to seek reintegration with the One, to perceive ourselves as part of the beauty of the One, the divine. To see oneself as a part of the divinity of existence. And thereby to lose the pain of a life caught in the web of endless desires.

The aesthetic experience is considered to be of great value in Indian thought. It lifts the veils of illusion which hide the truth from our eyes. Our experience of beauty when we respond to a sunrise or to a great work of art is seen to be a moment when we perceive the Grace which underlies the whole of creation. In that moment, the veils of illusion of the material nature of the world are lifted and we see beyond.... In that instant it is not our material preoccupations which fill our consciousness and thereby blind us to the greater reality".

What are your beliefs? Have you seen or felt God, or His presence? How?