A LETTER TO GOD - 4
Surprised? A second letter from me within a week, does’nt it mean that you are constantly in my thoughts? Well the truth is that you are appearing before me more often. Today I saw you and listened to you speak. There was a huge crowd as usual, people blocking others view of you in a bid to have your darshan. Initially I was annoyed, but later I realised that it was pointless to squeeze my way through to look at you. So I remained where I sat and watched you on the TV screen and was satisfied, for you seemed much closer and I could hear every word you spoke. I could understand whatever you spoke, for your words were simple and your logic impeccable. All around me I saw satisfied looks as if to say that they had found the answers to their questions and doubts. How much of what you said will be retained by them after they leave the temple and go back to their homes is open to conjecture. I felt that you were addressing me and responding to the questions I had raised in my earlier letters. I was happy but my doubts still remain and I still believe in you.
You started with the question ‘Why does one pray to God?’ and went on to elucidate logically the necessity of God in our lives. From time immemorial we have always believed in a power that governs the course of our lives, a power that is beyond thought and beyond human comprehension. That you are beyond our comprehension is still very much valid in our times. So why does one pray to God, it is because he wants something and believes that it is not possible for anyone in his vicinity to satisfy these needs, you can say humanly impossible. You added that it is Hope that God gives you and all that he demands is faith. Hope, that is what I have been talking to you about in all my letters, and that is why I keep writing to you whether you reply or not.
Bhakti or devotion to God, you said can be put into four categories. A person prays to God when i) he wants deliverance from suffering ii) he wants the fulfilment of his desires iii) he wants the knowledge to realise himself in a bid to understand You iv) he has attained realisation. You said that we will find only the first two categories prevalent and the other two are not relevant for you to address as they are already on the path beyond the self.
So one prays to God seeking deliverance from suffering or for the fulfilment of his wants. You said that God is impartial and there are no different yardsticks with which he measures people. All are equal in front of him. It is only devotion that counts, pure unstinted devotion. From what I understood, if our prayers are not answered then it means that our devotion is not complete. You of course acknowledged that questions may rise in one’s mind regarding the disparities that exist, a man who prays suffers and a man who lives an immoral or unethical life, maybe leading a comfortable life. You went on to add that the results of one’s actions will soon catch up and the effects may be felt either in this life or the next life. Karma, that is the catch word.
This is where my problem lies. I have already written in my first letter that this cause and effect explanation does not satisfy me. It is of course an easy way to explain away things beyond our control.
You see I have never disbelieved in you. Though questions are raised and your silence is exhibited as proof of your non existence by people who do not believe in you, I only ask why are you silent.
There is this book ‘The God Delusion’ by Richard Dawkins which challenges the very idea of your existence. I bought it out of curiosity and tried going through it, but left it midway because I felt the arguments expressed in the book were bigoted.
We have never been able to pinpoint the boundaries of this Universe, the more we discover the vaster it seems and there can never be an end to the frontiers. At the micro level things are only a probability. When it comes to understanding you, there can never be a formula. But my angst is real, where has this germinated from I still fail to understand. Why do I feel the way I do? I guess no one other than me can find the answer. You will observe from all my letters to you, that I have never questioned your existence, whatever form you may be in. You are the only answer to all the unsolved mysteries of this universe and there will always be unsolved mysteries despite all that man can discover.
Yours truly, I remain a believer.