Banaras, A Mystic Love Story

Banaras is not a destination its a journey of our lives. If you go to watch this movie for a ready-made solution or only to "kill" two hours, you may get disappointed. Banaras is aimed to create a thirst for something one is generally uncomfortable to explore.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

God is not great..... by Christopher Hitchens

The case against religion.... and God

After I finished this book titled, God is not great,
I tried to fathom the unfathomable dissonance of a mind. I guess when someone as informed as Hitchens, enters a state of I-know-all, the outcome is a highly jumbled up and an opinionated product, nothing less than this book.

Hitchens attacks everyone and everything. He makes sniper attacks on Jesus, Mohammad, Moses, Buddha and every other prophet you can think of, and sprays bullets on the likes of Gandhi, mother Theresa and Martin Luther King. He declares all religions to be evil and all believers to be idiots, extremists or terrorists.

Religions, in time, become dogma and dogmas are not something to be proud. Hitchens is entitled to his opinion about individuals from his knowledge of right and wrong and there is little one can do change it.

Hitchens ridicules God and in fact negates his very existence. And that prompted me to write this article.

First and foremost, from what I could make out from his book, his mind is conditioned by the description of God as he may have interpreted from reading books. He may also be influenced by the disillusionment he may have personally experienced by living in the company of “masters” he may have chosen in the past or were chosen for him. He looks for a God of some higher order who has the capability to interfere with our actions, decide our fate and generally keep a watch on whatever we do. Will he be disappointed? I bet.

God is not something that can be captured even in imagination, leave alone being described. And it is very stupid of Hitchens to make presumptions about believer’s perception of God.

According to Hitchens, our world is completely explained by Charles Darwin and all the credit for our being here is given to “evolution”. While I have no quarrel with Darwin, I have a few questions for Hitchens.

The world (or any system) left on its own has tendency to move towards disorder (Law of thermodynamics. We experience this in our daily life, as we have to spend large sums of money in repairing and maintaining our belongings), implying that when we get a glimpse of some kind of “order” among chaos, it is manifest of some intelligence. Our species and all other species living on this planet are good examples of this.

Humans are more evolved than other species because they have the potential to “connect” and “see” the truth much beyond the capability of their sensory system. However, this transcendental experience, being tacit in nature, is beyond articulation and can not (is incapable to) be expressed or shared with others. And such people, who, even though have personally gone through such experience, when confronted by people like Hitchens to give sensory evidence of that experience, can only listen and smile.

Unchecked by his own reason, Hitchens goes after the idea of intelligent-design and uses some convoluted logic to explain our presence through evolution.

According to Hitchens “airplanes are, in their human-designed way,”evolving” and so in a different way are we”. Taking his argument further, if the airplane “evolution” is driven by human-intelligence what intelligence is driving the Darwinian evolution?

Hitchens should know that intelligence does manifest in other forms and can be replicated but never be created from nothing. If evolution is intelligent, then there must be a source for that intelligence. I wonder if Hitchens would like to propose a name for such a source.

Evolution is limited only to conscious entities. It is not applicable to the "material" world. Evolution is a process that is authored by some intelligence to ensure that it doesn’t have to keep looking over it.

Certain intelligence creates a universe with certain laws and replicates itself inside to create evolution, much as humans create airplane and replicate themselves inside the airplane. The laws of the universe do not evolve. Only the consciousness does.

And consciousness is a replication of the infinite intelligence that causes everything to emerge from nothingness. If that can be called God then he certainly is great.


Blogger Free said...

Dear Mr. Singh,

Having seen his live lecture at my university, I can safely say that Hitchens viewpoint is that of an university scholar: pontification to the extreme. Experiences are left to a second plane. I myself am an academic scholar, who has found that the academic environment is slowly abandoning its search for scientific truth. The need for marketing, for pushing grants, to have followers, and be accepted in a group of peers, sets the agenda a lot more than truth itself.

No sage from our vast India has ever proposed a dogmatic, know it-all, follow blindly system. It is always about each person pursuing self-knowledge to the best of their abilities. So many ways of looking at reality and ourselves are laid out, from intelectuals to simple people, all have the chance to explore and understand.

Of course, there have been issues and corruption of parts of India, such as casts. In my well known university, by the way, american cast system is in open display. But this has never affected our core values, and our best known masters are the opposite of most of what Hitchens puts forth...

What I never understood is this: if Hitchens can follow truth blindly, since he never experienced all areas of science deeply, why blame others who decide to follow their own experiences? No human being can read and validate personally all science that has been developed... So they also "believe", but their belief is based on their value system.

I have no problems with science and spirituality. Both never colide. The inner and outer are one and the same. Newton attributed his inspiration to God, whilst Gauss to his queen, mathematics. This is as spiritual as prostrating to Ganesh or Shiva. But for sure, without an open mind how are we to uncover answers for our worlds pressing needs? People seek for peace, health, cure for various diseases, comforts, and bliss.

It would be beautiful if Hitchens or anyone said: "Look it is my experience that there is no God. I also do not support the established religious leaders and their powers. But I recognize that such structures exist in the science establishment itself, and I vow that here, where I can make a change, we shall change". Believe me, there is a lot more religion and religious leadership in the scientific community than our population imagines...

Saturday, October 31, 2009 7:22:00 AM  
Blogger lal singh said...

Dear Free. I dont know how I missed your comment for so long. You, obvioisly are a very wise person and i deeply respect yoir views.

Thursday, June 21, 2012 7:42:00 PM  

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