14 August, 2020

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“A Different God” In Response To “An Indifferent God” By Shyamon Jayasinghe

By P. Soma Palan

This refers to the article by Shyamon Jayasinghe (SJ) titled “An Indifferent God” in the Colombo Telegraph dated 5th October 2018. With due respects to the author, who was a Senior to me at the University Campus, Peradeniya, during 1959-62, I wish to express my views on it. SJ uses the English word “God” in a general sense as understood in Christianity and Islam, two main theistic religions. But, my views are from the standpoint of the Hindu religion. The Hindu Conception of God referred to as “Brahman”in Sanskrit, varies from the Christian and Islamic conception of God. The latter two religions believe God to be a supra anthropomorphic Being, residing in the Heavens and ruling the Cosmos, the Creator of all sentient and  insentient beings and, an all-pervading Compassionate Being rewarding the virtuous. All evils in the world, both human and material, are the creations of the Satan (God of Evils). Thus, according to these two religions, there are two kinds of Gods in the world, one for evil and one for Good. Therefore, God is not responsible for the negative results, such as human tragedies, natural disasters, sickness, sorrow and suffering in the world. The God of Evil, Satan, is responsible for these misfortunes. This separation of the two aspects of Good and Evil, limits the all-powerful quality of God as he is helpless over the power of the Satan. Therefore, God has a limitation over his mercy and compassion. This explains the lamentation of the Archbishop Canterbury over human tragedy of the Tsunami over Sri Lanka to exclaim “where is God”; “why is he indifferent” or “simply He does not exist? SJ also questions why the Earthquake in Indonesia which claimed the lives of 1500 in a Muslim country where the people pray God five times a day to illustrate the powerlessness or the non-existent of a God. All these doubts and agnosticism seems justified when perceived from the understanding of God from the standpoints of both Christian and Islamic religions, and from the Atheism of Buddhism.

Hindu Concept of God

Hindu Religion is undeniably the oldest and original systematic religion in the world, with a Philosophy coming from the unknown and unknowable past. It has no Founder and/or a chronological date of origin as other religions of the world. The Eternal Truths were revealed to the ancient Rishies and transmitted in a line of parampara Rishies, in the form of Vedas and Upanishads. It was rendered into writing only around 3000 BC. The proper name for Hinduism is Sanatana Dharma. It was the Persians who called those on the side of the river Indus, Hindu, derived from the latter. Hindu conception of the so-called God,is different to the Biblical and Islamic idea of God. There is no creation of the world, both sentient and insentient, by a Personal God . God or more correctly called Brahman is Impersonal. In philosophic terms Brahman is Absolute Truth or Reality and Nameless and Formless. Brahman signifies ever expanding Entity, Infinite. Anything which has Form is limited and destructible and subject to dissolution. It is Cosmic Intelligence, Consciousness. Thus, there is no Creation as understood by other religions by an all-powerful Being creating everything out of nothing. Hindu Cosmology is one of Projection (Sristi in Sanskrit). This process of Sristi or Projection is in accordance with modern Science and the Quantum Theory. Creation is cyclical. Each Creation or Sristi made up of Four Eras (Yugas) of 24000 years. Last Yuga is Kali Yuga, which we are now in. With this, there will be dissolution. A new cycle will commence, with the process of dissolution, Involution, evolution and creation. The world as a Gross Matter will be reduced to its finest quantum – atoms to the invisible level cf Akash (space) and all life force to level of Prana (invisible Vital Energy-The Universal Soul). It is this Universal Soul, which we call the indestructible Paramatma, the Infinite and expanding “Brahman, which is formless. It is the activation and vibration of the Pranic Force, (Vital Life force or Energy) against Matter (Akash) that is, force acting against matter, that starts the creative process (Sristi) of all gross forms, both sentient and insentient of the  new cycle. Thus begins involution and evolution and birth of a new world.

A Different God

God in Hinduism, is a Different God and an Impersonal God. He is not an Indifferent God as SJ perceives. Indifference is a quality arising from a Personal nature. God or Brahman is beyond all Good and Evil. From the above creation, it is evident that man emanated from the Universal Soul (Absolute Reality). I am using the word He for convenience, but the real Sanskrit word is “Twam”, which means “That”which ”Is”. It is said “Thou art That”( TatTwam Arsi) God is the Cause of our existence (effect).  The effect was potentially in the Cause. If so, the Cause is also in the effect. The Cause is Divine, then, there is spark of divinity in man. Unlike in Christianity all human beings are born Sinners and carry the Original Sin of Adam and Eve, vicariously. Man can attain the status of Divinity by his efforts. Man becomes Good by himself and Evil by himself. God does not punish or reward man. We reward and punish ourselves by our own actions ( Karma). SJ‘s view is that since there are natural disasters like Tsunami and destruction of lives, human suffering, so-called God, if He exist, is either impotent or indifferent to all the negatives of life. The assumption is that such a God is wicked, indifferent and not merciful and compassionate, if He exist or plainly does not exist and only a figment of our imagination, a wrong notion from the idea that God is an Extra-Cosmic Human Being living in the skies above. According to SJ, God if He is God, should prevent all deaths and suffering in the world, otherwise God is an Indifferent God or does not exist. Then, why prevent deaths, instead in the first place, God must make all Beings Immortal. All born beings should live for eternity without dyeing. Why should a benevolent God protect and prevent only the collective deaths caused by tsunami and other natural disasters and not prevent individual deaths of all beings, caused by natural means. Is it that the lives of latter of no value? Isn’t the God who is said to be their creator, is equally indifferent by not allowing human beings, including all life forms of life to die? If God is compassionate there should be Immortality. There should be no deaths and/or destruction in the planet, to exculpate God from the charge of being “an indifferent God”. If death is the natural Law of life, then one can conclude that God is indifferent and do not exist. Death and God cannot coexist. These two are mutually antithetical. The line of reasoning of SJ will thus lead to such a ludicrous and preposterous conclusion. SJ cites the case of a Cancer patient who was saved from death and her praise of God for that. SJ argues “why God gave her Cancer in the first place” if God existed. By regression, why God brought about her birth? By infinite regression, why whole Existence, if death and destruction is inevitable? Isn’t Wars that cause millions of human deaths and great suffering to mankind also due to an “Indifferent God”? Aren’t wars are due to the stupidity of man and not due to God’s indifference?

The Universal Soul, the Soul of all Souls, is the Absolute Truth or Reality, was in existence before, and in the present and the future. That, is the Vital Energy that brings about creation or Sristi. It has no  beginning or end. It,“Is and Being”. All that is originated, created, compounded is subject to the law of decay, destruction and death. If God is finite and has form, then God too must die. But so-called God exist, not in the Gross and Finite Form. It is Formless. If it is has a Form, it is limited and cannot be Infinite. The Finite, the Existence, cannot know the Infinite, except by merging with the Infinite or coming one with the Infinite. That cannot be through the scientific method of analysis, dissection and laboratory experiment. One cannot fall in love by outside means by reading love stories, love poems etc. It is by experiencing love that one can know love. Thus, God has to be experienced to know His existence. It is like this: a Family has a Head. Society or community has a Head. A country has a Head and Similarly, a vast, complex Universe with many Planets, the Sun, the Moon , so on is managed and governed by a supra- Cosmic Intelligence, which we call God. How can one account for the precision and regularity of functioning of these cosmic objects like the Earth and its rotation and revolution around the Sun, giving Day and Night, and monthly appearance of the Moon without fail? Obviously there is some Universal Intelligence behind them. It cannot happen by chance: Because chance and regularity cannot go together. If such an Omnipotent, Omnipresent and Omniscient Entity exist in a concrete gross form like Man to be seen, felt and touched, then He ceases to be God.

Conclusion

Rationalists, Atheists, Agnostics and Materialists and egocentric Intellectuals deny the existence of God. Denial is the easiest path. But none of them have given a credible and substantive explanation for the Non-existence of God. Only speculations and assumptions are available. God has to realized and experienced. By scientific methods and intellectual reasoning one cannot know God. To the Hindu, God is nothing but the Ultimate Truth, Absolute Reality. All Else is just illusion (Maya). That, which “Is”, is One, and not many, but called by different Names- Holy Father of the Christians, Allah of Islam, and Brahman of Hinduism. Buddhism is not God-centric but Man-centric.Though accepting the Hindu doctrines of Rebirth, Karma and Mukthi (Nirvana), which are in the realm of faith, but strangely not God, which is also an article of reasoned faith.

Those who deny the existence of God are the worshippers of Materialism. They see Matter all around, outside them, and ignorant of the Spirit within Oneself. Man is more than the physical and mental. Spiritualism is going beyond the physical and realizing the Divine. One cannot realize even a spark of Divinity by mere intellectualizing.

I conclude with a quote from the Bhagavad Geetha.

Lord Krishna says “Death is certain for the born. Birth is certain for the Dead. Knowing the inevitable, why grieve”?

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Latest comments

  • 2
    7

    Not correct at all:
    “both human and material, are the creations of the Satan (God of Evils). Thus, according to these two religions, there are two kinds of Gods in the world, one for evil and one for Good. Therefore, God is not responsible for the negative results, such as human tragedies, natural disasters, sickness, sorrow and suffering in the world. The God of Evil, Satan, is responsible for these misfortunes. This separation of the two aspects of Good and Evil, limits the all-powerful quality of God as he is helpless over the power of the Satan. Therefore, God has a limitation over his mercy and compassion”

    • 5
      0

      Soma,
      Proving the existence of The God of any kind is upto the believers; for, non-believers are already convinced of His non-existence!

      Invoking The God is only another mode of explanation of the reality around us. But, if physical & biological laws can present repeatedly testable explanations, why bother about untestable existence of Gods of any kind?

      • 3
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        Cont..
        I missed Shyamon’s column somehow & read it only after reading this. To my opinion, the question Shyamon has posed is nothing new. As a matter of fact, all the religions are the results of efforts find answers to similar questions. Religions are nothing but the science of old days. Humans have reached the age of science only b’cos later dogmatized versions of religious institutions wanted the followers to believe the as the only truth, nothing but the truth and thereby prohibiting the questioning the status quo. This is the similarity & the difference between religion & science. In other words, religions that originated as efforts to find new answers to questions around us became solid dogmas while unquenching thirst for new & better answers produced modern science.

        Dogmatic theories – religious as well as scientific – don’t allow dissent of any kind. Marxism is an excellent example for such a dogma. For them, proof is unconditional belief while in science, testability is the key principle. All scientific statements stay as hypotheses until they are proven by repeated tests. If taken one step further, this line of argument leads to the counter intuitive Popperian definition: “Refutability is the essence of science”. This means that validity of scientific theories last only so far as no inconsistent facts are found. Darwin knocked down Lamarckism; Einstein knocked down Newton’s Gravity; and; so on.

        • 3
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          Cont….
          Why a majority of people still believe in some kind of religion when there are no single direct testable proof of their claims including the existence of some kind of God? Most common answer is the fear of death! I don’t agree b’cos it doesn’t make any sense to take death as so central for the thoughts of religions when Death is all around. Didn’t people kill animals for food and to win competition? Perhaps religions are the product of rudimentary beliefs in the existence of an inner soul caused by the then unexplainable dreams as well as the power of the Natural forces. Whatever the source might have been, once they become part of the learning process since the childhood and thereby become part of the solid cultural foundation, it extremely difficult to root out.

          From evolutionary point of view, despite our large brain (not a direct product evolution but a “hitchhiked” byproduct of extended growth period), we are, like the rest of the living organisms, evolved to “survive by fitting”; not to question the conventional perceptions. If we survey the history of human thought, it is obvious that only a few courageous individuals has stood up to face the difficult challenge of proposing new ideas. In feudal days, it was not just proposing a new idea; it is also taking of life or death risk! That is why Darwin waited 15 years to publish “The Origin” (1859) when he had the full theory in summary form by 1844.

          In other words, we are good at following; not at questioning. Just imagine a status of chaos if all members in a group asking question all the time without coming to a consensus ( a fundamental weakness of democracy)? But, organisms, human included, living under natural conditions cannot afford to spend arguing; they must follow experienced leader or face destruction.

          • 1
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            Cont..
            This behavior of willingness for subordination explains human tendency to be easily manipulated by trusted leaders. Political/religious leaders exploit this natural weakness particularly if the society is pressed by poverty and limited knowledge. That is why countries with strong middle class are much more favorable for democracy. It is on this ground I contested WA Wijewardena’s assertion that growing trend of religious fundamentalism owes to biologically & culturally regressive trend. What is seen in SL is not a regressive trend; it is a very slow “progress” in making a strong middle class – the breeding ground for free thinking & advanced knowledge.

      • 2
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        D.P.
        Perfect. A French philosopher said the concept of God is ‘superfluous’.

        Soma

        • 1
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          somass

          “Perfect. A French philosopher said the concept of God is ‘superfluous’.”

          Probably He would have already met, Gota, Mahinda, VP, Rohana, ….

      • 0
        3

        DP@
        This is no correct I would feel- just because of no evidence before the human beings, who have yet discovered only a little, similar to a drop of the ozean, about the truth of universe, to argue about non-existence.
        I know over 75% of this world, perhaps more are into religions based on god, except some buddhist countries that believe in god not that deep. Meaning not that buddhists in general would not believe gods but they do, not to that extreme ends the way christians and islamists would do.
        I then believed no god – but in between, I think there can be an existence of god or ” super natural powers” behind the human beings. Human beings are held to be the most intelligent creatures so long other like minded would not be discovered. besides, how can we be based on that human senses could be that powerful than those of any other apes. There are lot more to research on the fields, but a very little is being revealed by the acts of today s researchers. I believe, it is better to believe in such super natural forces than not doing so, because the human curiosity could grow further and further so long we would go after our greediness in finding the unknown.

        • 2
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          Babalth Appu,
          Well, that is your choice but all I can say is that the more human knowledge expand, the lesser the amount of proof for the existence of Gods of any kind. That may be the reason Pope Francis himself finally declared that the Biblical version of creation can no longer be accepted, and that instead of creating the universe as it is The God has created physical & biological laws for the Universe to function.

          At first look it appears to be a clever way out of the conundrum but, if physical laws alone are enough to explain the Universe along with God himself, then the God himself become part of science – not a supernatural person. Or else, God must be out of the universe where no laws or some other laws could exist! Isn’t it clear that these arguments are nothing but refined excuses to save religious institutions from the onslaught of modern discoveries?

      • 1
        0

        As said none is born with a label of belonging to any religion . The Myths & stories about God/Satan are stories related by Parents, Teachers , Religious people to communities of people, hence the new born will go along with such stories and myths, which have become powerful in the last 6000. to 8000 years. Some Philosophers look for Truth & reality and consciousness pain & suffering. Perhaps in the next decade we will have AI, Biotechnology , computer Technology , Data colonization and powerful Developed Nations hacking into Human consciousness that they will know more about an Individual than he does himself, hence they be more powerful than stories told about “Gods” . The technology will be developed to such an extent they will be able to read the ever-changing mind(consciousness ) of people. Let us hope it is for the good of mankind, but could be dangerous in the wrong hands (Satans)

  • 3
    0

    Shymon Jayasinghe writes on a purely materialist basis. Richard Dawkins, in his God Delusion, also argues the absence of supernatural beings from a similar standpoint. Thus, in their view, “reality” is limited to what could be perceived by our sensory perceptions. But is there a “reality” outside of what we can comprehend through our senses? I do not mean the limitations placed by human physiology or the limitation of instruments mankind had developed to extend the reach of our sensory grasp. I mean is there a “reality” beyond these constraints and outside of Time and Space?

    My understanding of Buddhism, limited as it is, is that to realize the ultimate “reality” one needs to reach a mental development (and state) beyond the reality constrained by our senses. In other words, as we are confined to a “reality” that we feel, see, taste, etc, we need to get beyond that to perceive “ultimate reality”. That is, if we can transcend sensory limitations, we will realize the “ultimate reality”. And this is achieved by purifying the mind, clearing it of all clutter, and reaching that state through meditation. What lies out “there” is beyond comprehension, as long as it is limited to senses.

    Common concept of God, according to Abrahamic religions, is an attempt to bring God into the sensory domain (or cage) in which we are confined. Trying to explain Brahman as a concept is also troublesome in this regard. Buddha said it in one word, Ehipassiko: Try it out for yourself. No one can explain “ultimate reality”. One must find it for oneself.

    • 1
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      C. B. Goonatilake

      I enjoyed reading your attempt explain away difficult concepts however why should we take trouble to explain whatever that is “God”. Do we have to understand God, and what for? If God exist good. If God does not exist also good. Why bother?

      Mahinda has gone to Hindia with his begging Bowl.
      At the end of his begging mission he has plans to visit numerous temples in the North and South of India.

      Does his begging mission has anything to do with his pilgrimages to multiple temples given his record on human rights, nepotism, greed, violence, injustice, ………………..and his clan’s recurrent urge to steal ?

      If he happens to meet God how would the god react to him?
      What will pilgrimages bring him?
      Will he meet thousands of Hindu Gods or just a few Buddhist ones?

    • 0
      0

      Knowing Shymon well , long years ago I think he follows the Richard Dawkins , Late Christopher Hicthin , Sam Harris, Lawrence Krauss, late Stephen Hawkins, and I guess he has followed Prof: Yual Novah Harrai as well , he will be able write interesting articles in the future about Stories, Myths ,Truth , Reality, Human consciousness, and the dangers we can foresee with the rapid development of AI, Biotechnology, algorithms, data colonization , with powerful nations in the near future the “Role of GOD”

      • 1
        1

        Asoka,
        I think that Richard Dawkins is funny fellow. He certainly is an expert on the theory on evolution but too much ambitions for making a name in the field made him an easy target for ridicule. He proposed an idiosyncratic theory which said that genes, not the individual, are the fundamental unit of natural selection while still trying to an ardent supporter of “Pan Selection”, a dogmatic version Darwinism that became popular during a most part of 20th century. After falling out of grace, he became an advocate for atheism. If my memory is correct, he visited SL as well in 2012 on a lecture tour on atheism perhaps with an invitation from Rohan Pethiyagoda who played a key role in naming a whole genus (Dawkinia Sinhala) freshwater fish in SL under his name (SL Intellectuals are so eager to flock around foreigners without much thinking).

        As far as I’m concerned, this act by Pethiyagoda was a huge insult to a great many SL naturalists and intellectuals. Besides, I don’t understand the meaning of lecturing on atheism to Buddhists b’cos Buddhism, relative to other theistic religions, is largely atheistic. I don’t believe that Dawkins ever studied Buddhism deep enough.

  • 3
    9

    It clearly shows that both the writers are confused with the term GOD. Islamic concept of God is completely different. God in Islam refers to a super natural power which has created the universe and all the lives and sustains them. It or He is eternal, no beginning or no end and all knowing. Nobody can know or imagine what he is doing and what he will do. He does everything for some purpose. His plans are perfect. He decides the future. Nobody in the world knows what will happen after his death.
    In Islam God Allah is supteme. There is no separate God for good and bad. He does everything good. Bad things happen because of the wrong of the people..

    • 5
      0

      Allah does everything good including asking his followers to kill non-believers.

      • 2
        1

        Lanka Perera

        “Allah does everything good including asking his followers to kill non-believers.”

        Is he the Sinhala/Buddhist Allah, Mahinda/Gota Rajapaksa?

        • 1
          1

          Native Fake Vedda,
          The experience of Native Sinhalayo in Sinhale is Hindu Demalu and Islam Muslims are the notorious mass killers. May be because in both these religions, slaughtering animals as sacrifice to please God is a common practice. May be Hindu Demala and Muslim extremists think by slaughtering Sinhalayo they can please their Gods better.

        • 1
          0

          No, Velupillei Prabakaran.

          Soma

          • 1
            1

            somass

            “No, Velupillei Prabakaran.”

            Did you mean Velupillei Prabakaran was the Sinhala/Buddhist Allah?
            I should think so given the level of destructions he facilitated the Sinhala/Buddhist armed forces to perpetrate on Tamils, yes he is another Sinhala/Buddhist god.3
            The psychopath VP fought an unnecessary war with IPKF to kick the Hindians out of this island, protecting the so called sovereignty (whatever that maybe) of this island.
            He elected Mahinda and his cronies in 2005 and 2010.
            He suffocated and weakened Tamils on behalf of the noisy Sinhala/Buddhists.
            He helped handful of Sinhala/Buddhists to become very rich and powerful.
            ….
            ….

    • 3
      0

      “Nobody can know or imagine what he is doing
      Is it a Guess ,supposition, conjecture or DELUSION.
      In my opinion without evidence any rationale person have to agree this is a deluded explanation.
      “Nobody can know or imagine then you add this statement to Santa, Tooth fairy, or Talking snake, Flying horse that Mohamed use.
      And one more thing you can draw a picture of Santa , Tooth Fairy or the talking snake without been threatened get your head blown off.

    • 0
      2

      What a joke! I am a muslim myself but, I could never imagine how people could swallow this silly explanation! Something good for one, could be disastrous to another and vice versa when you take the event on a global level. For example, an earthquake maybe destructive to humans but, beneficial to the earth and other living beings. We tend to conceptualise God only to our advantage, while there are billions of other living and evolving life around us.
      Surely, God is for everyone.

  • 1
    6

    Soma Pala. You have wrong understanding of God in Islam and Christianity: Jedo-christian and Islamic faith are one. All comes from one source. all share same faith and tradition with little bit difference in theology, law and practice. All believe in Adam and Eve. all refer to Adam and eve as first man and woman from whom entire human race is created yet, Do you think your Brahamin was born before Adam and Eve. Hinduism and Buddhism are in fact a deviation from these three divinely inspired religions. There is only one creator for this world and only one God and human race is one and only . There can not be millions of Gods as Hindus believe or Buddhists believe. For Hindus every thing is Gods. Cow is God, rat is God, monkey is God and all creatures are God for them.. Does this make sense? In fact, these Hindus and Buddhists do not have any religions in any sense. but they have some philosophy or man made traditions and customs. so in that sense. All divinely revealed religious people vs people of deviated people who do not have any religions. Who misguided people to deviate? it is non-But Saytan according all Biblical and Islamic traditions. Who created Evil Saytan? it is God who created Saytan to test man if he follows Divine orders or his own desires. Human life is a testing?

  • 1
    0

    Soma Palan:-
    Stephen Hawking, before he died, warned that mankind has to migrate to another planet within the next Ten Thousand Years, when the sun will expand/enlarge to engulf the entire solar system.
    Also, read his “A brief history of time” on the internet.

    • 1
      6

      that is why exactly Qura’n says about the end of the world. Sun, stars and moon all planets will lose all their energy and collapse. Read the last part of Quran to know about. How did 1400 years ago Quran speak about it. It is divine revelation not man made one that is why .

      • 5
        0

        Quran is divine revelation not man made one, a stupid revelation saying earth is flat.

        • 1
          2

          where is it said ..

        • 3
          1

          Lanka Perera

          “Quran is divine revelation not man made one, a stupid revelation saying earth is flat.”

          Many Sinhala/Buddhist believe the first ape spoke Sinhala and practiced Buddhism, many also believe Buddha was a Sinhalese and born and bred somewhere in Sri Pada. They believe Shenali Waduge, Kamalika Pieris, HLD M, Champika, Gamanpillai, …. all have his birth certificate to prove it.

          On the other hand Wimal Sangili Karuppan Weerawansa believes God Mahinda Rajapaksa is the Buddha.

  • 2
    6

    The author has a good understanding of original concept of Brahmam in Hinduism. However he is confused with other religions Islam and Christianity.
    First of all the terminology ‘God’ is inadequate to address a supernatural being. The term has plural Gods and feminine Goddess. In Arabic ‘Ilah’ represents the creator, protector and provider all in one. Fundamental of Islam is that there is no ‘Ilah’ but Allah who is one, self sustaining, no procreating entity like human and more importantly none like anybody thinks ie human minds can not fathom the magnitude of ‘Ilah’.
    Allah is beyond the comprehension of human logic ie beginning and end, that is why many logical minds refuse to accept the existence of ‘Ilah’.
    Allah has many attributes such as The Creator, The Merciful, The Compassionate The Destroyer and so on, each attributes has a mind boggling proportion for example The creator of humans, animals, birds, insects and all other living and non living things including the cosmic universe consisting of millions of galaxies etc. many people try to imagine ‘Ilah’ in the context of earthly living but earth is an insignificant entity in the infinite universe. For example in Hinduism Lord Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu have human forms and Luxmi for wealth and Saraswathy education are female entities.

    A simple way of understanding ‘Ilah’ is looking at the creation of human body which is the result of the mind boggling attributes of ‘Ilah’ manifest in making of individual organs, network of nerves and brain, billions of human beings are born from a clot of flesh transforming into millions of stem cells growing according to DNA of the parents..

    • 0
      3

      Mr ..

      “Randomness produced order;;
      What a joke….
      Why does not do it now.
      Is it only in the beginning.
      I think you need to check your head with some good doctors .
      All those atheists too need to do that.
      Do you see any ad hoc or chaotic situation in this universe.
      All are all planned by God alone.

      One day science will tell us about all this

  • 1
    4

    Is ‘Lord” Krishna a God or was he a human born’ out of god’. he was apparently considered a Great Flirt who was capable of enticing a couple of women at a time. Notwithstanding his capabilities, he was loved by women and MEERA was longing to be his beloved. If a man is to be born again after death no one seems to know when, where and how and as whose child? You can go on arguing about god but I wonder whether you can come to a conclusion. My contention is if there is a God leave him alone.

    • 0
      4

      K.Anaga

      With due respect to your apprehension of Lord Krishna who is a character in the Epic of Mahabharatha Hindus prefer to worship Gods in human forms which goes against the superior concept of formless entity of Brahmam mentioned in the above article. The author also quoted verse from Bagwath Gita which was narrated by Lord Krishna in the battle field to remind Arjuna regarding his responsibility as a Shathriya, the ruling class, to uphold justice against evil to motivate him to kill his own kith and kin who were supporting evil. In Bagawath Gita Lord Krishna claimed that everything is happening through his will and all others have to perform their duties in just manner to uphold justice on earth.

      It is amazing that such concept is even applicable in the modern time such as Allied forces against Hitler and a legitimate Government forces against terrorists such as LTTE who were originally freedom fighters later turned into fascist killers.

      • 0
        0

        Nakeeb!
        LTTE fought for a cause( Which is is being proved every day from National anthem to the rest) during which time there may have been matters to your dislike. But the Muslims Killed worshipers in the Church- mostly Tamils for no reason. Similarly, it is said that the government forces killed over 40’000 not only during the war even after the war.
        Unfortunately, whether it is Allah, Krishna, or Jesus or Buddha (Sorry he was not a god) why did they allow killings? Thereafter they speak of retribution to those who committed the offense .- All gods who have so much of power could have prevented both?

        • 0
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          K.Anaga

          Agreed. LTTE fought for a cause and the cause does exist even today. However, LTTE turned into a fascist culture – first they killed their own people like Amirthalingam, Yogeswaran and members of other factions later killed Muslim worshipers in the mosques, carried out ethnic cleansing of Muslims from North. Even though they fought for the legitimate rights of Tamils the end does not justify the means. They committed crimes against humanity and they perished when the divine justice came to pass.

          As for the Easter bombing of predominantly Tamil churches Rev Malcom Ranjith himself has said that it was not the work of Muslims but masterminded by certain group or organisation using some misguided Muslim youths. He is still pressing Sri Lankan Government authorities to reveal the original perpetrators who were benefited by this crime.

          Man was created with both noble qualities and devil’s desire. That is why the struggle to eliminate evil is an ongoing process. Please read Bagewath Gita (I believe that you are Hindu) with open mind and understand the reality of life in this world to carry out our life in a just and peaceful manner but resist evil as and when it confronts you.If you read the biography of Prophet Mohamed (pbuh) you would see that for 23 years since he was bestowed with prophet hood his life was just that.

  • 0
    2

    According to Wikipedia, Karma in Buddhism:
    Karma.
    The cycle of rebirth is determined by karma, literally “action”.
    In the Buddhist tradition,
    karma refers to actions driven by intention (cetanā),
    a deed done deliberately through body,
    speech or mind,
    which leads to future consequences.
    Karma is a concept of Hinduisms which explains causality through a system where beneficial effects are derived from past beneficial actions and harmful effects from past harmful actions, creating a system of actions and reactions throughout a soul’s (Atman’s) reincarnated lives[1] forming a cycle of rebirth. The causality is said to be applicable not only to the material world but also to our thoughts, words, actions and actions that others do under our instructions.

    According to an article by Dr.Ravi Zacchariah, the first birth is not possible because prior to the first birth, no one could do anything beneficial or harmful acts as the person was not born,
    and therefore no birth is possible.
    I also read an article in a Campus Crusade for Christ magazine, under the heading what an ‘Atheist believes, the following:
    The universe came into existence by itself.

    So, there cannot be intelligent design.

    The explanation for

    ‘coming into existence by itself’

    is expressed by the following formula, which you have seen before:

    MATTER + TIME + CHANCE = THE UNIVERSE

    In the beginning was MATTER.

    After a very,very ,long TIME , MATTER started to change.

    Simplicity by CHANCE brought forth complexity.

    Randomness produced order.

    Furthermore for a some strange reason

    inanimate matter brought forth organic matter.

    After very many, many, years

    organic matter became so complex

    that it became conscious of itself .

    This system of thought has classically been called ATHEISM.

    (Continued below)

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      “Randomness produced order;;
      What a joke….
      Why does not do it now.
      Is it only in the beginning.
      I think you need to check your head with some good doctors .
      All those atheists too need to do that.
      Do you see any ad hoc or chaotic situation in this universe.
      All are all planned by God alone.

      One day science will tell us

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    5

    The Bible covers a period of approximately 6000 years .
    The first verse in the Bible reads as follows:
    Genesis 1:1
    In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
    According to the Bible ,God became human:
    Philippians 2:
    5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

    6 Who, being in very nature God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
    7 rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.
    8 And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death—
    even death on a cross!
    The Bible tells us in:
    1 Timothy 1
    15 Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance:
    Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.
    The Bible tells us :
    Romans 3
    23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
    24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus

    Romans 6
    23 For the wages of sin is death,
    but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    I am a sinner, who has repented of my sins and trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ as my saviour.

    Do not depend on your good works, there is no rebirth.
    If you do not repent of your sins and trust in the death of the Lord Jesus Christ as your substitute,
    this is what awaits you:

    (Continued)

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      It is hilarious that in this day and age there are people who believe this nonsense. Quoting from their own religious book ignoring all logical arguments.

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    4

    Do not depend on your good works, there is no rebirth.
    If you do not repent of your sins and trust in the death of the Lord Jesus Christ as your substitute,
    this is what awaits you:
    Hebrews 9
    27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.

    Revelation 20:11-15 King James Version (KJV)
    11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

    12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

    13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

    14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

    15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

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      Le Comege,

      We have had enough Bible Bashers here. Please keep your religion to yourself and respect other more advanced religions than Hebrew rubbish

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    P. Soma Palan? Doesn’t ring a bell.

    Having been at P’denniya at the same time, can’t remember coming across a Soma Palan at the faculties or in residential halls.
    /
    In case I’ve forgotten, would you care to remind us which facukty you were in an who your batch mates were, Mr Soma Palan.
    ‘just curious.

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      It is unfortunate you did not know me. I was well known not only in my Residential Hall, Ramanathan, but throughout the Campus, for my sports- Athletics and Bodybuilding (physical Culture). I broke the Shot -Putt record in athletics and represented the University at the Central Province AAA and won the Shot Putt event for 3 consecutive years. Awarded University Athletics Colours. I represented Ceylon at the Mr. Asia Physique Contest held in Lahore Pakistan and won the Tall Man Class title in 1960. I won the National ” Mr. Ceylon” title in 1962. I was nominated for the Most Outstanding sportsman in the University, but received a Honourable Mention only. The winner was Dr. C. Thurairaja. Further, I inaugurated the First Mr. Campus, which was won by late Hilmy Manzil. I give the names of contemporaries- D.H.De Silva University Cricket Captain. Dr. Micheal Roberts, who got a First Class in History, Wikrema Weerasooriya, who got a First Class in Law. Mr. Jayantha Dhanapala our Sports Council Presisent and later Ambassador. Mr. Sarath Amunugama , our Students’ Council President and later Minister, my batch mate Merril Guneratne (DIG) Mr. Rajaguru (DIG) I was in the Arts Faculty and graduated with a B.A. Degree in 1962. I can gone on ad-infinitum. I hope this would suffice your need.

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    Hindu, word, came from India, When British government was in India, 1850, they call the people , who are , Buddhist + Chirstian + Muslims, not Hindus, and Rest are Hindu, —( Tamils are not Hindus), Srilankan Tamils are -(, saivam) , not Hindus, Srilanka language not go behind the Aryan Bhramin, ( Tamil language and Sinhala language not root from Sanskrit), but some Sinhala scholars/ linguistics, believe, sinhala language root from Sanskrit, that was wrong, ( in Sinhala language-Parkit + Tamil + ancient Sumerian/ elam words) are there, Lord Budda never spoken-( Sanskrit), because, Indian Hindus ( Sanskrit specking people) against lord Buddha, but Srilanka Tamils not so,

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    EXCEPT Mr Soma Palan and the commenters who claim to know all about God all other beings are created by God. If I were to assume that they too are created by God then they are no different to my grand daughter’s talking doll.

    Soma

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    Imagine Somapalan born to a Christian family and brought up as Christian. He probably would then have had a different religious view. Or, if commentator, V. Lekamge, was born to a Buddhist family and brought up in Buddhist tradition, he may then be preaching Buddhism instead of Christianity. And ditto Buddhists, Muslims, Jews, Jains, and everyone else.

    Most of us are condemned to believe the dogma of the religion we were indoctrinated with when we were in our formative years. With such indoctrination, we rarely grow up with an independent mind on these matters. Our beliefs are formed and solidified while we are still immature and still unable to think rationally. Brought up thus, maturity does not enable us to break the religious spell cast on us when we were innocent of any view.

    If we are not given a religious upbringing/education in our childhood, we may grow up to think independently on these matters. We may then not have the arrogance to believe that “ours is the truth and everything else is false”.

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    “Rationalists, Atheists, Agnostics and Materialists and egocentric Intellectuals deny the existence of God.”

    In the Semitic religions, God is used to reward and punish. In Buddhism, “god” represents personal demons. In Hinduism, God represents some cosmic energy, similar to the “Dark Matter” postulated by physics. Regardless, in my opinion, “god” is a dangerous idea as it encourages humans to blindly submit. For example, “Islam” actually means “submission.” God is also the basis for creating a religion-based hierarchy, that is dominated by priests, as was the case in India and Medieval Europe. The criminal psychology of the priest character is described in detail by the philosopher Nietzsche in his book “The Antichrist.” Some might argue religion is okay in moderation. I disagree; as Marx said, it is the “opium of the masses.” You cannot enjoy heroin in moderation, eventually you become addicted. If we look at history, religion was the basis of many wars, oppressive colonialism, and many backwards societies such as Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, that still exist today.

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    To discuss these things is good, but in relation to something said by old Shymon Jayasinghe of Australia?

    Read his articles on SL politics , especially on Ranil Wickramasinghe. How off the mark can a man be and yet be taken seriously in this forum ?

    He was virtually on all fours praising this ghoulish SL politician Ranil !

    Can such a fallen man have any intelligent thoughts ?

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    Interesting to read. The concept of God explained by any of the beliefs does not hold ground. Scientific explanation is what that holds ground. Stephen Hawking’s ideas are closer to the explanation, however he too wavered at the end. Our minds are imprisoned by the genes. They are not allowed to wander freely. However if you successfully wander, the behavior of the universe speaks volumes of facts. The secret lies in the understanding of how the energy behave in nature. Energy has mathematical characteristics, which can interchange from matter to energy and vice versa as noted by SH. Energy cannot travel faster than the speed of light as it becomes matter. The formation of stars repeatedly signifies cyclic character. It signifies infinity. Civilization starts and ends like the matter and energy. God is not required for these things to happen, the character of energy does it itself. Anyway good writing PS.

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      a lot of lies and fabrication in this article. Paganism is explained in Hinduism and Buddhism. All bound to go to hell. follow one and only God who created this universe ad you and me

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    I don’t see people like Mr. Amarasiri commenting with words like “tribe” “prostrate” “the elusive Nibbana” “Monk-imposed tradition” “imbeciles” here.
    So….
    Obviously people like Amarasiri are against Sinhala Buddhist culture.
    /
    And
    Concept of GOD is as old as history itself.
    It can never be “My god is better than yours”

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    In the present context where everything is changing at a rapid pace. Myths & Stories told and believed by vast numbers of people in different parts of the world, from 30 to 40 thousand years ago, is fast diminishing. The biggest story told by the Bakers & Economists and accepted by everyone in this planet is “MONEY” a worthless piece of paper ( Green paper $), but the story created is well accepted by every religious sector, as for Prof: Yual Novah Harrai. So the Myth of Money is the biggest in every community and religion and in the power of a nation. None was born with a label as a Buddhist , Christian , Muslim or Hindu, so how they acquire the faith is through stories & myths told to the new born by Parents, Teachers and Religious People. As for Yual Novah Harrai in his analysis what is important is the philosophy of truth , reality & consciousness, to know yourself better, but the danger today is that Artificial Intelligence, Biotechnology, and data colonization, algorithms will be hacking into human consciousness in the next ten twenty years, will know you better than you do and no ” God” in whatever faith will give you a solution. The younger generation has to change and change fast to the upcoming situation

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    Dear V.Lekamge. Your poor knowledge of Islam and Christianity is very much clear. Do not judge Islam with your knowledge in pagan religion. Hinduism. According to Quran, cow worship was introduced around 6000 years ago during the time of Prophet Mosses or sometime before him. Hinduism is a deviation from true path of Oneness of God. It does not make sense to have many Gods in this world. then all Gods will fight each other.
    In Islam God is not comprehensible by human Mind. He is beyond human imagination: No image for God In Islam.. yet, your feel, see and hear signs of God around you in this universe. Read the Holy Quran: the final message of divine revelation to all humanity. Now, Chinese people too turn to Islam in time of Conoravirus. why, only A true God could cure all infections like this.. May God guide from paganism into the truth of Islam

    • 1
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      Noor

      “According to Quran, cow worship was introduced around 6000 years ago during the time of Prophet Mosses or sometime before him.”

      Could you cite the complete comment and reference.

      “Hinduism is a deviation from true path of Oneness of God.”

      Apart from your local Hindu Temple and its adorable erotic statues what Else do you think you know about Hinduism? The all identity of embracing Hinduism was not named by locals but by foreigners. Over a long period of time attempts were made to unify/codify all religious practices within greater Barat.

      Now coming back to the issue of oneness of God, you should once in a while visit Siddha tradition which is devoid of caste, traditions and beliefs, among South Asians.

      Also it would be useful if you intent to liberate yourselves from your own ignorance if you could visit/revisit all Islamic sects/cults new and old and the reasons as to why they have been tearing themselves apart over many centuries.

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    Thank you very much for the article – I learnt a bit of Hinduism.

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    Every body saw jesus and belive jesus is god muslim through jesus knows god having ample of miracles which was a proof coming back of one of the sign , The miracle of the parting of the Red Sea was performed by God through Moses. After these things happened by miracle people view and images are divered to different stories fairies at the bottom

  • 0
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    The primary objective of any religion is to provide a credible description of what happens to an individual after death.
    All the rules and strictures imposed by a specific religion on it’s adherents are therefore designed to enable the individual to achieve this post-death status seamlessly after leaving this world.
    In this sense, there are no significant differences between any two religions.
    The only question is whether the idea of going to ‘heaven’ or being ‘reborn’ after death is more plausible and attractive to each individual ?

  • 0
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    Religion is not necessary for man to exist but man is necessary for religion to exist.

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    Mr. Somapalan,

    “Rationalists, Atheists, Agnostics and Materialists and egocentric Intellectuals deny the existence of God. Denial is the easiest path. But none of them have given a credible and substantive explanation for the Non-existence of God.”

    This shows your fundamental ignorance of what ‘Agnosticism’ means.

    The burden of proof for the existence of God is on the believer. If you don’t understand that, you don’t understand anything.

    All you do is hide behind the claim “One cannot realize even a spark of Divinity by mere intellectualizing.”

    It is like a teenager having a crush on a girl and not being able to express it, resulting in unrequited love. Of course, I know you have some unrequited love for a thing called God but can’t describe it. So be it, but don’t then come here and blame others for ignoring something that exists only in your heart.

    Language exists to express thoughts and experiences. The process of one person expressing his/her intellectual arguments, and then letting others come up with counter arguments, using their own intellect, is what leads to the truth. The truth is the always superior argument.

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    It is understandable as to why Buddhist scholars have kept a low profile in this argument of Searching who the true God is’! For them it is exactly like the story of President Trump being impeached has no effect on the work of a meditating monk living in the West Virgina forest monastery, USA, or a Bhikkuni (nun) practicing meditation in Sathi Saraniya in Perth, ON, Canada. The aim of the meditator is to realize subjectively (for him/herself) the true nature of his/her existence and put an end to it by eradicating the cause (Thanha; Desire) rooted within him/herself, that powers and sustains the on-going effect (birth). Without this root cause no sentient being can be born nor reborn. If you are not born you will neither exist nor suffer! It is as simple as that and therefore, the solution remains within yourself and doesn’t exist in another entity.
    According to the author’s quote from Bhagawath Geetha: “Death is certain for the born; birth is certain for the dead. Knowing the inevitable why grieve”. To say that it is ‘INEVITABLE’ is an insult to human intelligence, and this is where the Buddha (the young prince Siddhartha) disagreed totally with his Hindu Gurus (teachers) in the 6th century BC. He thought, as human beings, we should be ABLE to stop GRIEVING which he summed up later after his enlightenment as ‘Dukka’ (Suffering).
    For the Buddhists the question is very simple: what’s the use of believing in ‘anything’ or ‘anyone’ almighty or super-mighty, Hindu, Christian/Catholic, or Islam, or even atheism, if it/s/he has no practical answer to ongoing suffering!
    Buddha found the SOLUTION and experienced it. While enjoying the newfound noble freedom, he revealed the ‘PATH’ (Magga) for others to follow, out of compassion; many Buddhists today do follow it and attain true freedom!
    Thank you!

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      Richmond Peiris, excellent. Very little to add to your sensible explanation. People are lost in the ‘jungle of views and opinions.’

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      What a load of BS–talking about compassion and suffering–by someone who worked to elect Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the war criminal and white van bandit?

      Listen, there are many good Buddhists in Sri Lanka, but one will never find them among Rajapaksa supporters.

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    Excellent article to read on a Poya weekend Sunday when the Gods are busy busy busy. But I will not be bothering them at all. I am into my eighth decade of a long life with a fair share of good and bad, happy and sad times. Good People, I now firmly believe that we are all creatures of circumstance. 99% of us inherit the family mores that we are born into. More and more children (especially in the west) are born to parents to don’t believe in a God or treat their religion mainly for ceremonial purposes. After Christianity and Islam, the third largest group is the secular group. We keep an open mind. Cause and effect. Generally, you perform a good deed and something good results – at least you feel good. Do unto others as you will have done unto you. Be kind and generous. Men have created their own Gods or ideas of God usually to suit their own line of thinking, often decided by their culture and circumstances. I was quite chuffed to hear about our old friend Satan being blamed for when our own ALMIGHTY GOD fails to deliver. What is the definition of ALMIGHTY? Please write and let me know, because right now I am reaching out for my ice-cold pint of Nuwara Eliya stout – one sip and I am in heaven!

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