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Demystifying God And Human Consciousness: Musings Of A Secular Atheist

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By Mahitha Kasireddi:

Enough has been said and discussed about the concept of God. The never ending inquiry about theology, evolution of life and both will never find sure conclusions. Lately, I have been undergoing a mind boggling rumination regarding the interrelation (if it exists) among faith, religion, astrology, god, philosophy and karma, not necessarily in that order.

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Can it be that prior to 1500 AD, there was no scientific explanation to why rains occurred or why did the sun set, and the people in those days personified the natural elements to be some supernatural forces or Gods. Is this how nature worshiping started? Otherwise how do we say that the gods too had the same anatomy as ours? People had visualized them as their look alike. And to express the magnificence of powerful gods in imagination the dual hands and multiple heads were added.

If religion does not answer the life questions then what can? Can Philosophy do? We have the most amazing philosophy in India. The Hindu philosophy helps one to quench the thirst of inquisitions through self study.

Again, I am hovered with a regret that religion had taken over philosophy. Why is the influence of chanting mantras in Sanskrit above the power of philosophy? Why had the learned clan in ancient India not pressed on spreading philosophy but bound people in blind faith? Faith, in its literal meaning, is a belief without proof. What was the logic behind the rituals? The way things were prescribed to be done. How were they going to answer questions like why we were born on this land, belong to these parents, belonged to this caste, this class and this race? There had to be some credible calculation.

It is unfortunate that secular ideologies and teachings were overshadowed by religions and rituals. There had to be philosophy and doctrine rather than god and religion. For me, my dream doctrine would be a school of thought which preaches secularism, harmony, help, duty and ethics, patience and tolerance towards others opinions and perceptions.

After all, all that we possess is not caste, religion, race and wealth but consciousness. To harness this inner potential should have been made everyone’s dharma. It is not god but consciousness and mind that should be observed. These entities are like time and space; vast, immeasurable, possess no dimensions such as length and breadth or starting and ending. This argument stands out in support of another ancient philosophy which lost light, called the Carvaka or Materialistic Philosophy. This says that entire function of a human being is his knowledge and his Conscious. In today’s society of established believes, it is impossible to revive philosophy.

The Bible says that god is omnipotent and omnipresent. I am asking is it not ‘energy’ that is present everywhere? That shows energy itself is God, god is energy. Like we worship other natural elements, we have been worshiping energy although we haven’t acknowledged it. It is the cosmic energy that fills every space carried by particles and waves travelling in time. There is abundant cosmic energy which brings balance. It is the energy of supreme consciousness and intelligence which helps in leading a happy life and also transforms the conscious. It obviously requires effort to gain command over the mind. For a common man, this sort of understanding is difficult. An ordinary human being needs something easier to trust upon, to feel secure. That is why faith prevails.

Someone who escaped at the nick of the time from a dreadful accident or achieved something without expectation would term it as either god’s blessings, luck or favoring stars! I don’t deny astrology to be mathematics and science, it absolutely is. But, the pandit in the temple asking us to perform a graha shanti puja, people offering costly ghee and milk in the background chorus of chanting some mantras in an alien language is something beyond my comprehension. How is it that even greatest reformers like Vivekananda haven’t spoken about Probability?

Keeping in mind all the restrains in your life, for a certain event to occur, probabilities play a role. The Schrodinger’s equations shows it lies between 0 or 100%. It cannot be determined accurately whether it is 0 or 100 as the wave functions vary with time. To that matter, nothing of astrology or quantum physics can predict anything accurately.

The theories of Karma Siddantham and destiny can also find explanation from probabilities and possibilities. The Karma mimamasa of Hindu Philosophy professes that Karma is not god- centric but human-centric. Until we are born, it is a probabilistic event, after that, probabilities are transformed into possibilities. We can influence the outcomes of our lives through our Consciousness. Our intelligence and free will to react and respond is what decides our destiny. It was rightly said by someone- “Our destiny lies within us”. The concept of dharma, or performing duty is to establish harmony and peace in cosmic life. And it does not require any explanation as to why our karma comes back to us. It comes due to repetition in interaction which in turn increases probability.

I must have sounded too fanatic throughout. I am not bent upon proving that religion is irrelevant. As a secular atheist, I respect other’s belief in God. I am not for propagandizing the scientists fraternity but all this is a fair contemplation of any aware person. My zestful inquisitiveness will not end here. If life is about touching, feeling and living in the present moment, why believe in superficial things or invisible supernatural things?

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  1. Raj

    Well you have expressed your musings in many words and that’s cool. But the part about Probability isn’t really correct.

    Probability is a mathematical definition and isn’t really related to the Schrodinger Equation. Probability is simply a ratio of (Set of things that I want) / (Complete relevant set ). It does in fact lie between 0% and 100% because of the way we define it.

    Schrodinger Equation is simply the quantum mechanics analogue of Newton’s second law (used in classical mechanics) i.e. F=ma
    It tells us given the initial conditions of a particle/system, how that system will behave over time.
    In F=ma, we can figure out the acceleration of particle if we know the force applied on it and its mass. The acceleration when integrated once gives the velocity, which again on integration gives the trajectory i.e. the path. So basically, at a given instance of time, we can calculate precisely , where a particle will be and how fast it will be moving (or more precisely what its momentum will be, which is the product of mass and velocity)

    While solving the Schrodinger equation, we can’t separately determined the position of a particle and its momentum at the same time. We end up with probability distributions which tell is that there is an x% chance that a particle is here , if we know its momentum. (Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle) So we end up with a 3D “matter wave” where the peak of the wave tell us the maximum probability of find a particle.

    And nothing of the above has anything to do with astrology. To say they both are anywhere even close to each other is ludicrous. Yes both have uncertainty but that uncertainty is related to completely different things. Quantum Mech talks about the uncertainty in position and momentum of a particle and it deals with it in a very coherent mathematical manner. It makes testable and falsifiable predictions which have been verified by independent groups
    Astrology on the other hand attempts to predict events and scenarios based on the position of the stars and planets. It makes vague and often untestable predictions which does not make it a science. It has been debunked several times though people cling to it.

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