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The problem, however, eventually became evident: to make science the arbiter of metaphysics is to banish not only God from the world but also love, hate, meaning—to consider a world that is self-evidently not the world we live in. That’s not to say that if you believe in meaning, you must also believe in God. It is to say, though, that if you believe that science provides no basis for God, then you are almost obligated to conclude that science provides no basis for meaning and, therefore, life itself doesn’t have any. In other words, existential claims have no weight; all knowledge is scientific knowledge.
―Paul Kalanithi, When Breath Becomes Air
If you don’t feel strong desires for the manifestation of the glory of God, it is not because you have drunk deeply and are satisfied. It is because you have nibbled so long at the table of the world. Your soul is stuffed with small things, and there is no room for the great.
―John Piper, A Hunger For God
Saying ‘Allahu Akbar ‘- ‘God is Most Great’ – doesn’t mean he is greater than something else, because there is nothing else for Him to be greater than. It means that he is too great to be perceived by the senses and too deep to be understood by the intellect. Too great, indeed, to be known by anything other than Him. Only God knows God.
Ahmad Ibd Ata Allah
Accept all that happens, even that which is unpleasant, because everything is a part of the health of the universe and the wealth of God.
Look closely. Know yourself. Question your genius. Do nothing without God, whether He teaches you by making you great or greatly plaguing you. This is the philosopher’s way; to be flogged like an ass and to love those who beat him, to be the father and brother of all humility.
We always revolve about the One, but we do not always pay attention to it. Like a chorus singing harmoniously around its conductor becomes discordant when it turns away from him, but sings beautifully when turned inward and fully attentive – we similarly revolve around the Oneness of God, but do not always look to him. Yet when we do, we find our home and resting place. Around him we dance the true dance; God inspired and no longer dissonant.
Man as he is has ceased to be the All. But when he ceases to be a separate individual, he raises himself again and permeates the universe.
Why will you not admit that the universe is a conscious intelligence since conscious intelligences are born from it
Every thing contains a portions of all things, but Consciousness is infinite, free, alone, and mixed with nothing else. Consciousness is pure and sublime. It has knowledge of everything. It controls all life, great and small. It governs the spinning wheel of separateness that divides things off one from the other. It knows all that is, and things that are not, and things that have been, and things that shall be. Consciousness arranges all things as they are, including the rotating stars, the sun, the moon, the air, and the ether.
There are two sides to this tale. On the one hand the many unite to become the Oneness, and on the other hand the Oneness divides to become the many. Things continually shift between being united by love and and divided by strife.
One cannot see God as long as one feels ‘I am the doer’. Fully awakened souls are beyond virtue and vice. They realize that it is God who does everything.
God and I in space alone
And nobody else in view.
“And where are the people, O Lord!” I said.
“The earth below and the sky o’erhead
And the dead whom once I knew?”
“That was a dream,” God smiled and said,
“A dream that seemed to be true,
There were no people, living or dead,
There was no earth and no sky o’erhead
There was only Myself–and you.”
“Why do I feel no fear,” I asked,
“Meeting you here in this way,
For I have sinned I know full well,
And there is heaven and there is hell,
And is this the judgment day?”
“Nay, those were dreams,” the great God said,
“Dreams that have ceased to be.
There are no such things as fear or sin,
There is no you–you have never been–
There is nothing at all but Me.”
-Edna Wheeler Wilcox
That which speech does not illumine, but Which illumines speech:
know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which cannot be thought by mind, but by Which, they say, mind is able to think:
know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which is not seen by the eye, but by Which the eye is able to see:
know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which cannot be heard by the ear, but by Which the ear is able to hear:
know that alone to be Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which none breathes with the breath, but by Which breath is in–breathed:
know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
Those who joyfully leave everything in God’s hands will eventually see God’s hand in everything.
-Shammi Sukh, Today Tears Tomorrow Cheers
Don’t surrender your loneliness so quickly. Let it cut you more deep. Let it ferment and season you as few humans and even divine ingredients can. Something missing in my heart tonight has made my eyes so soft, my voice so tender, my need for God absolutely clear.
What we are is God’s gift to us. What we become is our gift to God.
Spiritual practice is will asserted and re-asserted. Who has not the daring will not accept the real even when offered. Unwillingness born out of fear is the only obstacle.
-Nisargadatta Maharaj (I am that, Chapter 38)
Whatever you do for the sake of truth, will take you to truth. Only be earnest and honest. The shape it takes hardly matters.
-Nisargadatta Maharaj, (I am that, Chapter 38)
ஆங்கொரு கல்லை வாயிலிற் படிஎன்
ஓங்கிய பெருமைக் கடவுளின் வடிவென்
றுயர்த்தினான், உலகினோர் தாய்நீ;
யாங்கணே, எவரை, எங்ஙனஞ் சமைத்தற்
கெண்ணமோ, அங்ஙனம் சமைப்பாய்.
ஈங்குனைச் சரணென் றெய்தினேன்; என்னை
இருங்கலைப் புலவனாக் குதியே
- பாஞ்சாலி சபதம், இரண்டாம் பாகம்
சிற்பி ஒரு கல்லை வாயிற்படி என்று மறைத்தான். இன்னொன்றைக் கடவுளின் வடிவமென்று உயர்த்தினான். நீ எல்லோருக்கும் தாய். யாரை எங்கே, எப்படி வைக்க வேண்டுமென்று உனக்குத் தெரியும். அதனால் உன்னைச் சரணடைந்தேன், என்னைப் புலவனாக்கு
Following is a record of the conversation in Jay Lakhani’s video:
In Hinduism, there are many forms of God. So we follow Ram, we follow Sita, we follow Krishna. But is there one particular form of God that we should be praying to – be it Matarani or be it Krishna, or are they all just representatives of one sole God?
OK. This question actually worries or confuses lot of Hindu youngsters. And forgets about the Hindus, it confuses the non-Hindus even more. They think this weird religion has got so many Gods.
And if I ask all of you, “Look Shiva, this is ultimate, almighty?”
You say “Yes”.
“And Mother Goddess?”
“Of course, Mother Goddess, how can you forget them? She is ultimate too”
This is kind of a contradiction. Come on, you cannot have too many “ultimate”s. This is not ultimate enough. So which one is the right one? Can the real God stand up please? That is what she was asking in a nice way.
What is the answer? The answer is this. It is very interesting. You see this is important for you to know. It is very good that the question comes from you.
This religion that appears polytheistic….
It is called polytheism. Many gods.
Then you all say yes. Many Gods. Yes. We all go Yeah.
Actually it is not polytheist. It appears polytheist but is actually pluralist. It says, the same ultimate reality that you are trying to relate to, you can call it by different names and give it different forms. Names and forms can be different, but same reality – ultimate reality.
So, not many Gods – but many ways to think about God. This is a big difference.
If you say many Gods, you say naive, not well thought out religion at all. They have not thought it out properly.
And then, when you say many ways to think about God that is grand, that is majestic. It allows different individuals to relate to the idea of spirituality in his own individual mode.
So different groups will say “We love Krishna.”
“OK, sing his glory.”
“Oh! We like Shiva.”
“Go for it my friends.”
The way you are relating to the ultimate is through the name and form of Shiva. Go for it.
This is the answer.
The name the Hindus give to the comprehensive idea of God is, you’d be surprised, is Brahman. The word Brahman there is no person like Brahma is different person, not Brahma. Brahman-Brahma.
The world Brahman means spirit, not as a person at all but as a principle that underpins reality. They said the whole of this creation is nothing but an expression of this principle. Look, not a person – a principle that becomes visible, manifested as the world we see in front of us. And the same principle, Brahman, becomes more visible, (because) clearer as living things and the most clearest vision of Brahman, this principle, is humanity – men and women.
That is why I said you are the clearest manifestation of God on earth. Where else will you find your God? He is lighting you up. Not you, everybody.
So this is a principle oriented religion but then it allows a personalized approach. Because, in that case why shouldn’t we just go Brahman and why should we bother with Ram and Krishna and Shiva and Mother? The reason we have to bother is because we are human – and we got human failings, if you like, human limitations.
If we are human, the only way we can build a relationship with this principle called Brahman, is to think of this principle as a personality.
Suppose I say “Build relation with Brahman”.
You say “What do I do now?”
I say “No, No, No, think of mother Goddess, sweet with flowing hair” and you want to say “Mommy”.
It is easy to build relationship.
With Brahman how do you build a relationship? It is a principle, it is abstract. When you turn the principle into a personality, then you can build friendship, relationship, like a mother figure, father figure, friend.
See the Hindu religion is the only one that allows you to think of God in a variety of different ways. Not just father in heaven, like Christianity. Mommy in heaven. Why not mommy? Mommies are sweeter, kinder, cuddlier, less hairy than daddies. Why can’t you go like “Mommy”? Why daddy all the time? Why fixation? In fact the Gayatri (Mantra) that you just recited, gives you the clue of the Hindu tradition. This is what it translates as. Let us meditate on the glorious effulgence of that supreme being that created the universe. May she enlighten our hearts and direct our destination. She. Addressing God as She. The central part of Hindus think God is a woman.
See? Because we are human, we like to relate to this principle in a human manner, that is why we create all this imagery. Lets go for it. The same one becomes all this.
People say, how do you reconcile principle and personality?
This is how they reconcile. It is like ice and water. Water is fuzzy, like no shape nothing, just fuzzy. When you freeze it, it can take on different forms. It is the love of the devotee that freezes this principle called Brahman into the various forms that he likes. Suppose I like to think of God as Shiva, this principle reduces itself and becomes Shiva and comes in front of me and interacts with me. This is Hinduism.
The love of the devotee freezes his principle into the personality of his choice. See the power of religion. Real democracy. Spiritual democracy.
हमारे यहां तो जैसा भक्त वैसा भगवान है। अगर भक्त पहलवान है, तो भगवान हनुमान है। और भक्त अगर पैसों का पुजारी है, तो भगवान लक्ष्मी जी है। अगर भक्त ज्ञान में रूचि रखता है तो भगवान सरस्वती है। यानी हमारे यहां जितने भक्त, उतने भगवान इस प्रकार का माहौल है।
-Narendra Modi, Valedictory function of the 6th World Ayurveda Congress 2014
मोको कहां ढूंढे रे बंदे
Moko Kahan Dhundhere Bande
Where are you searching for me, Oh Servant,
मैं तो तेरे पास में
Mein To Tere Paas Mein
I am with you
ना तीर्थ मे ना मूर्त में
Na Teerath Mein, Na Moorat Mein
Not in holy pilgrims, Not in images,
ना एकान्त निवास में
Na Ekant Niwas Mein
Not in solitary living
ना मंदिर में ना मस्जिद में
Na Mandir Mein, Na Masjid Mein
Not in a temple, not in a mosque,
ना काबे कैलास में
Na Kabe Kailas Mein
Not in Kabas or Kailash
ना मैं जप में ना मैं तप में
Na Mein Jap Mein, Na Mein Tap Mein
Not in praying, not in meditation,
ना मैं बरत उपास में
Na Mein Barat Upaas Mein
Not in ritual fasting
ना मैं किर्या कर्म में रहता
Na Mein Kiriya Karm Mein Rehta
Nor I live in action or karma
नहिं जोग सन्यास में
Nahin Jog Sanyas Mein
Neither in yoga or renunciation
नहिं प्राण में नहिं पिंड में
Nahin Pran Mein Nahin Pind Mein
Not in life force, Not in the flesh of body,
ना ब्रंह्याण्ड आकाश में
Na Brahmand Akas Mein
Not in universe or sky
ना मैं प्रकति प्रवार गुफा में
Na Mein Prakuti Prawar Gufa Mein
Not in the womb of nature,
नहिं स्वांसों की स्वांस में
Nahin Swasan Ki Swans Mein
Not in the breath of the breath
खोजि होए तुरत मिल जाउं
Khoji Hoye Turat Mil Jaoon
Search and I can be found quickly
इक पल की तालाश में
Ik Pal Ki Talas Mein
In a moment of search
कहत कबीर सुनो भई साधो
Kahet Kabir Suno Bhai Sadho
Says Kabir, listen brethren holy men,
मैं तो हूँ विश्वास में
Mein To Hun Viswas Mein
I exist in faith
क्या करेगा प्यार वह भगवान को?
Kya karega pyar woh bhagwan ko?
What love can he give to God?
क्या करेगा प्यार वह ईमान को ?
Kya kareha pyar woh eemaan ko?
What love can he give to Religion?
जन्म लेकर गोद में इन्सान की
Janm lekar godh mein insaan ki
Being born in the lap of a human
प्यार कर पाया न जो इन्सान को ।
Pyar kar paaya na jo insaan ko
He who cannot love the human kind
-Gopal Das Neeraj
Text below was printed in a religious periodical called “The Christian Work and Evangelist” in January 1904.
I wish you Health enough to make work a pleasure;
Wealth enough to supply all necessary needs;
Grit enough to battle with difficulty and overcome it;
Grace enough to confess your sins and forsake them;
and Patience enough to toil until some good is accomplished.
I wish you a Cheerfulness that shall make others glad;
a Charity that shall see some good in your neighbor;
a Love that shall move you to be useful and helpful;
a Faith that shall make real the things of God;
and a Hope that shall remove all anxious fear concerning the Future.
I wish you the Dignity which befits the children of God;
the Humility which is needed in every follower of Christ;
the Prayerfulness which develops and enriches the soul;
the Push and Progress which were manifested in the life and labors of our Saviour;
and the Piety and Perseverance which come from the abiding presence and influence of the Divine Spirit.
The Eagle soars in the summit of Heaven,
The Hunter with his dogs pursues his circuit.
O perpetual revolution of configured stars,
O perpetual recurrence of determined seasons,
O world of spring and autumn, birth and dying!
The endless cycle of idea and action,
Endless invention, endless experiment,
Brings knowledge of motion, but not of stillness;
Knowledge of speech, but not of silence;
Knowledge of words, and ignorance of the Word.
All our knowledge brings us nearer to death,
But nearness to death no nearer to God.
Where is the Life we have lost in living?
Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?
The cycles of heaven in twenty centuries
Brings us farther from God and nearer to the Dust.
The lot of man is ceaseless labor,
Or ceaseless idleness, which is still harder,
Or irregular labour, which is not pleasant.
I have trodden the winepress alone, and I know
That it is hard to be really useful, resigning
The things that men count for happiness, seeking
The good deeds that lead to obscurity, accepting
With equal face those that bring ignominy,
The applause of all or the love of none.
All men are ready to invest their money
But most expect dividends.
I say to you: Make perfect your will.
I say: take no thought of the harvest,
But only of proper sowing.
The world turns and the world changes,
But one thing does not change.
In all of my years, one thing does not change,
However you disguise it, this thing does not change:
The perpetual struggle of Good and Evil.
गुरु गोबिन्द दोउ खडे काके लागूँ पाँय |
बलिहारी गुरु आपने गोबिन्द दियो बताय ||
Guru gobind dou khade, kaake lagoon paay
Balihari guru aapne, gobind diyo batay
Guru and God both are here, whose feet should I touch first
All glory be unto the guru, path to God who did bestow
Live a good life. If there are Gods and they are just, then they will not care about how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are Gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no Gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will love on in the memories of your loved ones.
In my youth I respected the world and life, I needed not anything but peace of heart;
And yet I changed despite myself and believed in Iktumi’s lies. He seemed to know all the truth, he promised to make me happy.
He made me ask Wakantanka for wealth, that I might have power; I was given poverty, that I might find my inner strength.
I asked for fame, so others would know me; I was given obscurity, that I might know myself.
I asked for a person to love that I might never be alone; I was given a life of a hermit, that I might learn to accept myself.
I asked for power, that I might achieve; I was given weakness, that I might learn to obey.
I asked for health, that I might lead a long life; I was given infirmity, that I might appreciate each minute.
I asked Mother Earth for strength, that I might have my way; I was given weakness, that I might feel the need for Her.
I asked to live happily, that I might enjoy life; I was given life, that I might live happily.
I received nothing I asked for, yet all my wishes came true. Despite myself and Iktumi, my dreams were fulfilled.
I am richly blessed more than I ever hoped, I thank you, Wakantanka, for what you’ve given me.
-Billy Mills , Oglala Lakota (1938-)
From Wakan-Tanka, the Great Mystery, comes all power. It is from Wakan-Tanka that the holy man has wisdom and the power to heal and make holy charms. Man knows that all healing plants are given by Wakan-Tanka, therefore they are holy. So too is the buffalo holy, because it is the gift of Wakan-Tanka.
-Flat Iron (Maza Blaska, Oglala Sioux Chief)
Mundaka Upanishad 3.1.6
सत्यमेव जयते नानृतं
सत्येन पन्था विततो देवयानः ।
यत्र तत् सत्यस्य परमं निधानम् ॥६॥
satyameva jayate nānṛtaṁ
satyena panthā vitato devayānaḥ
yatra tat satyasya paramaṁ nidhānam
Truth alone triumphs; not falsehood.
Through truth the divine path is spread out
by which the sages whose desires have been completely fulfilled, reach
where that supreme treasure of Truth resides
The Lord is enshrined in the hearts of all
The Lord is the supreme Reality
Rejoice in him through renunication.
Covet nothing. All belongs to the Lord.
-Isha Upanishad 1 -1
“O Allah! If I worship You for fear of Hell, burn me in Hell,
and if I worship You in hope of Paradise, exclude me from Paradise.
But if I worship You for Your Own sake, grudge me not Your everlasting Beauty.”
-Rabia al Adawiya
The most beautiful and profound emotion we can experience is the sensation of the mystical. It is at the root of all true science. That deeply emotional conviction of the presence of a superior reasoning power, which is revealed in the incomprehensible universe is my idea of God.
This earth is His, to Him belong those vast and boundless skies; Both seas within Him rest, and yet in that small pool He lies.
-Atharva Veda Book 4, Hymn 16.
I wonder why some people tend to see science as something which takes man away from God. As I look at it, the path of science can always wind through the heart. For me, science has always been the path to spiritual enrichment and self-realisation.
-APJ Abdul Kalam
I believe today that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty.Adolf Hitler
Miracles happen everyday, change your perception of what a miracle is and you’ll see them all around you,Jon Bon Jovi
Years ago, I was walking along the sea shore and I saw a little fish about three or four inches in size. But this little fish was in so much worry, flapping again and again, lying on the dry sand. I do not know whether it was a male fish or a female one. Let’s say it was a male fish, so that the fish could be addressed as ‘he’. So I looked in his eyes and he just looked in total confusion, frustration and misery. Somehow or other a wave had washed this little fish up and there he was, lying on the sand. The fish could not breathe properly. He was flapping and suffering.
Now I could have got a female fish and put next to him; would that be of any help? I could have got some mango lassi with some nice sanitized straw and put it next to him. I could have got him a diamond ring or a ruby crown. I could have offered him a BMW. Would anything of that make him happy?
Because he was out of his natural element, nothing could make him happy. So I tried to pick up that little fish and throw him back into the ocean. But he was so intensely worrying that every time I picked him up he just flapped so hard that he flapped right out of hand back into the sand. And I picked him again, but again he flapped out of my hand into the sand. At least 5 times I picked him up and he flapped out.
I was his well wisher trying to save his life but he could not recognize me, because he was just in such a state of trauma. Finally, with both my hands I cupped him and trapped him so he couldn’t get out; then I threw him as far as I could into the ocean.
True meaning of Dharma : to unite whatever we do in whatever role we may be in, with our spiritual nature, in the service of God.Radhanath Swami
To feel the inherent ecstasy of God’s love within ourselves is our true nature and to try to find happiness without tasting that love is like a fish trying to find happiness on the sand of the seashore.Radhanath Swami
Enlightenment is constant awareness of this world as inherently divine, of life as a loving partnership with God and every moment as an opportunity to offer and receive love.Radhanath Swami
Where there is necessity there is a deeper appreciation.Radhanath Swami
To love another person is to see the face of God.Victor Hugo
Those who have Seen cannot say. That which has been Seen cannot be painted, cannot be reduced to words. But still each one has to give a try – and the world goes on becoming more and more beautiful because of these efforts.Osho
The first piece, which is the most important, is that which comes within the souls of people when they realize their relationship, their oneness with the Universe and all its powers and when they realize that at the center of the Universe dwells the Great Spirit and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us.”–Black Elk Oglala Sioux
The Great Spirit is in all things: he is in the air we breathe. The Great Spirit is our Father, but the Earth is our Mother. She nourishes us; that which we put into the ground she returns to us.–Big Thunder (Bedagi) Wabanaki Algonquin
Hasan then replied, “How did you come to know Him?” Rabi’a al Adawiya said, “You know of the how but I know of the how-less.”Rabi’a al Adawiya
aham brahmāsmi – “I am Brahman”, or “I am Divine”Brhadaranyaka Upanishad 1.4.10 , Yajur Veda