Is there a God or are there gods? This is a very difficult question for some. People never seem to question something bigger than the self until, in many cases, it is too late to form a final belief – life providing unexpected intrusions, a quickly occurring finality, for example. I feel, as a sensitive being, however, it is impossible not to question the “why.” Why for everything – for the bugs, the bees, the butterflies, for me, for that matter – just why? There is no empirical (1) answer to this existential question.
The answer lies in comprehending that the solution is physically unknowable. Here, there is no human rationality. How is it that we are so driven to “understand” everything? Our technologically advanced age does not understand not having a response to everything. Despite this, ultimately, the question of whether there is a universal force can only be answered by you. There is no external thought that can place that concept in you. It is innate, I believe. Faith defies description. To paraphrase Sadhguru, “I have seen hundreds of people die but most were only alive for a few moments.” (2)
We certainly must become “alive” to life. The only way to truly comprehend this gift is to realize that once there is life there can never be death. Death, simply put, is the absence of life. A flower begins as a seed; a shoot springs forth, the shoot develops into a stem, the stem eventually supports branches and leaves that gather nutrients and sunlight, etc. Once the blossom has finished its magnificent display, it withers and returns to the soil to give sustenance to a whole new range of plants. Yes, there is change, but the cycle of life goes on.
“Death is not an event in life: we do not live to experience death. If we take eternity to mean not infinite temporal duration but timelessness, then eternal life belongs to those who live in the present. Our life has no end in the way in which our visual field has no limits.” (3)
The problem, in all of this, I believe, is that many people associate “the self” with their corporeal things in the world – their body, their possessions, their ego, if you will. (4) Though a difficult concept to be freed from, the ego cannot go with you after you leave this mortal plane. In that sense, we are free to develop the beautiful self, to uncover our true mission in life. This magical occurrence, this grand travail will, by its very unfolding, answer this question of God for you.
The motivational speaker, Dennis Waitley (b. 1933), leaves us with a thought: Time is an equal opportunity employer. Each human being has the same number of hours and minutes every day. Rich people can’t buy more hours. Scientists can’t invent new minutes. And you can’t save time to spend it on another day. Even so, time is amazingly fair and forgiving. No matter how much time you’ve wasted in the past, you still have an entire tomorrow. (Parts of this essay were first published in 2019)
A closing thought: The way that we find answers, I believe, is to spend quiet time in reflection and meditation. All answers do truly lie within. We do not need to seek external answers to internal questions. This would appear to be illogical and make no sense. All great theologians, scholars, and philosophers have taken this well-worn path to an understanding of life. It behooves us to follow their journey.
To sum up: This week, we spoke about understanding reality and our place in it.
To be noted: An eye for an eye will, ultimately, leave the whole world blind.
Just for fun:
This week on your thoughtful walk, please ponder how you perceive your relationship with the universe.
Every day look for something magical and beautiful
Don’t be a wage slave – critical thinking is great!
Quote: All answers lie within if we are willing to open the door to the self.
3) Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus (ISBN: 978-0486-404455)