Saturday, July 29, 2006

The two kinds of beliefs and their common meeting point

I feel that atleast 99% of the people believe in a Personal God, someone who is supernatural, who is sustaining this 'world and beyond' with all his powers etc.,. They are so much devoted that they express their faith in multiple ways. Some people do not eat anything till they perform some kind of worship, they restrict their diet during festivals, devote some time for reading specific books everyday and many such things, which I am sure everyone would have experienced and there is no need for me to explain this in detail. And, if they miss any of these even on a single day, they feel so bad! All this is because they are so much devoted. They have so much faith- towards one 'thing', be it whatever.

I have also seen the second type- who apparently 'try' to go a step beyond, as it were, and try to seek truth (I am not saying that the first type dont) and do not believe in idol worship, saying that the people who are of the first type are fools etc.,.

I was just thinking of these two cases. I feel that the whole idea behind any of this kind of belief is- 'purification of mind' through concentration. So, how did man start this? The thought of disease or death is one thing that provokes man/mind all the time. He probably tried by first believing that- he is very small and there is something more powerful than him- which is not temporary, which is sustaining everything and the rest of the thought follows. He could have been wrong in the way he thought- but I am just trying to say that this could have been one of the ways in which he started interpreting.

Then it probably became difficult for him to think of something 'invisible' to his eyes, believe in this 'something apparently invisible'. But on the other hand, his strong belief in something supernatural and the effect of his mind over these thoughts, could have resulted in attributing certain features to his 'God', like- having many heads, hands, creating something out of nothing, all kinds of things which that pitiable small mind could have imagined. Different people thought of different things and all these thoughts exploded to give rise to a symbolic representation of these thoughts. And they started believing in this kind of form given to their thoughts. Now, they didnt have to worry that the God of their thoughts is 'invisble'. Because these very thoughts resulted in this form of God which they started offering their prayers to. Their happiness would have had no limits. Their devotion, love and faith would have had no bounds, for, they now supposedly saw their thoughts in a form in front of them! Theirs may/may not have been blind belief. Lets analyse it further..

They would have done everything to spread this great idea of theirs- which everyone felt easy to follow- worshipping these idols. Not that these people did not know that God is omnipresent. They probably knew that God doesnt just exist in these forms/idols. Or probably some of them even knew the truth. But, they had some special belief and devotion towards that form- which their own thought produced. Its a product of their own mind. Its not crap. Its not non-sense. Its their mind, essentially their mind. If you want to call it crap, then it is not the form that is crap, it is the mind that is crap. The very same mind that thinks of it as crap is crap! Yes, it is a vicious circle. It comes back to the same point- the mind! Their's is not foolishness.

I have seen people having such extreme devotion towards the forms. As they have believed and concentrated on this single thing all the time, their mind gets so much occupied that they see only this form- which is nothing but a 'collection of powers' according to their mind. So, do you see that there is an intersection here? Yes, again! Of the thoughts that their mind produced-- which went on to become a form-- which again influenced and occupied their own mind which produced it! It is a complete circle! This time, it is a neat one, a good one!
A complete circle!

So, whats the big deal? Yes, its a circle, so what? It is no great discovery that the things that the mind produced have indeed occupied it. But the difference lies in the fact that when the belief, the concentration, the love, the devotion fills up the mind so much- be it towards the personal God or towards the self, the mind sees nothing but "that". Such a man will never do anything wrong- for the fear of his mind being a witness. He will always think good, do good, - his mind is again producing this thought, as it were, that it is a witness. So, earlier, his mind was running in all directions like an uncontrolled horse and now it is being rightly controlled, the one-pointed devotion and concentration has begun. He sees the world in a different way. Because he sees the same thing everywhere. He does the same good to everyone. He sees no difference. I cannot explain this further as I dont know anything beyond this at this point of time! Basically, I guess he does everything right. It might not seem so to someone else. But, to his mind, it pretty much knows that he is doing the right thing.

Ok. So, where did we start from? We started from the fact that he does everything for the purification of mind through concentration. Hasn't he achieved this through the belief in a 'form' although he might have or may not have initially believed in the formless divine, in his own self, in 'that' which exists everywhere, infact the only thing that "really exists". But to get rid of the difficulty of imagining something formless, he created a form. Was this wrong? I dont think so. He just made his life easy, atleast those who followed this, thought so. If a mind can comprehend something formless, then great! But all our thoughts, for example, while reading a book, involve so much of imagining each instance in some form or the other- which is again specific to a mind. The culprit is the mind! (In the real sense, although it is not , on the outset it atleast looks like it is) It just cant think of any damn thing without associating it with a form, isn't it?
Poor thing, it is being made to act the way it does...

Anyways, the two categories of people that I mentioned initially (one who believe in a form and the other who do not) meet somewhere, with almost the same kind of effort put in to reach there and from there on the path is the same, I believe- the formless!

The "young" mind that was initially incapable of thinking about the formless is now capable of. The thoughts of this young mind that created the 'form' were useful. It actually helped. So, the mind is such an idiot- it needs so much of training to make it believe in what it initially did!!
It looks back at the path and finds that it actually came back to the same point, of course with a better understanding, more capable than before.
Actually speaking, the mind is not the cause of all actions. So, attributing 'action' words like 'looks back', 'came back' etc., is wrong. Because it "seems" like it is performing activities and being the root cause of everything. But, it actually does what "you" ask it to do. But still, for all practical purposes, to put my point across, I have made use of this rather easy terminology- easy to comprehend.

 Well, this posting was due to an extremely stirred up mind that resulted in a long "chain of thoughts" and as I have now stopped writing my personal diary, I thought of getting this off my mind in the "form of a few words", yes, again a 'form', to make some space for something else! Something more thought provoking, something much deeper in the real sense!

1 comment:

Karthik said...

you had mentioned that this posting was born out of a stirred up i read this i felt that the "stirring up" whirled in the right direction and you have written something that is so much philosophical and an unanswered question for millions of years.

I agree with your point that the young mind needs an form to get matured and then choose its path preferably formless. In fact this is so true. Worshipping idols for years is like studying from kindergarten to highschool..the basics. everyone needs a certain dose of it.Can anyone get a doctorate degree without attending kindergarten and highschool? sameway it is very difficult to get convinced and beleive that a certain Supreme power exists without associating the power with a form.

After that its an individual's choice. One may continue to do idol worship or or one may identify that whole world is controlled by a formless infinite ONE single power and that it cannot be represented by any form and has to be realized from within other words knowing yourself completely is conquering the supreme power.

keep writing.