Can we understand God through Logic? And other silly questions.

Someone using the name “dattaswami” submitted four different entries to SEB yesterday covering a wide range of topics which, beyond the subject line, didn’t seem to make a lot of sense. Still it’s been a few days since I last had anything to post and there’s always the possibility the guy might make sense to someone out there so I figured I’d go ahead and post the entries. Rather than do them individually, however, I opted to combine them all into one big post.

Perhaps someone will find them useful, say as a cure for insomnia or as a reminder of the importance to take one’s mediation each and every day, or perhaps not. Either way all four entries are after the jump.

Can we understand God through Logic?

Adi Shankara( a previous human incarnation) made certain assumptions, which are hypothetical to preach the spiritual knowledge to the devotees at various levels. Generally the devotees are trained in the logic pertaining to the imaginable items in the world. The development of a concept by them is from a worldly example and also its application is to another worldly example. For example since the black color of the mud (cause) is entering into pot (its effect), the conclusion is that the nature of cause enters its effect. This conclusion is applied to another worldly example and they say that the bright color of the gold lump (cause) must also enter the chain (its effect). Here, mud, pot, gold lump and chain are imaginable items and are worldly examples.

Hence, all their logic is limited to the imaginable items only and that cannot be extended to the unimaginable God and His link with creation is also unimaginable because it is a link between unimaginable God and imaginable creation. This does not mean that logic is useless. It is useful in denying an imaginable item claimed to be unimaginable.

For example in the ancient time the awareness is thought to be independent energy like a free electromagnetic wave in space. But today due to advancement of science and analytical faculty it is clearly proved that awareness is not an independent item but it is completely dependent on the co-existence of functioning nervous system and the inert heat energy produced by the oxidation of food. It is only a special work form of energy appearing through a complicated special technology of brain and nervous system. It is not independent even like the electromagnetic radiation traveling in the space. That which was wonderful yesterday is clear today. It was unimaginable but now is imaginable. Therefore, there is a knowable region extending up to space in the creation.

In this knowable region there are certain layers of attained knowledge and certain layers of unimaginable nature. But the layers of unimaginable nature will certainly be analyzed by logic and science in the course of time. But there is a dead limit of this logic and analysis of science, which is the space beyond which the region of eternal unimaginable nature exists. Therefore, by conquering the unimaginable layers within the knowable region, it does not mean that one day or other the logic or science will cross the dead limit of space also and capture the unimaginable God existing beyond space. That is impossible.

You may try and try and one day you may touch the roof of your house by the constant practice of high jumps. But this does not mean that one day or other you will also touch the sky by the continuous practice of high jumps. Today the unimaginable layers within the knowable region may appear wonderful and these layers can be called as Maya. The word Maya comes from root meaning “wonder” (Maya vaichitrye). The word wonder does not mean that it will be always unimaginable. The temporarily unimaginable systems also look wonderful before the analysis. The magic show looks wonderful but it can be analyzed and the wonder may disappear after analysis. Hence, wonder need not mean the permanently unimaginable item only.

The deeper layers of this universe are wonderful without analysis but may be realized in future. These layers are temporarily unimaginable and the word wonder is used in the case of these also. Therefore, Gita says that you will find the universe as wonderful (Mayamtu Prakrutim…..). The Universe is infinite with unimaginable beginning and unimaginable end. This means the cause from which the Universe started and the same cause in which the Universe ends on dissolution is the unimaginable God. Mud is the beginning stage of the pot and also the end stage since the pot ends in the mud on destruction.

The Universe exhibits the unimaginable God by its unimaginable limits of beginning and end. The space is generated from God and the dissolution of space can only show the real nature of its cause (God). When the chain is dissolved in fire, then only the gold lump, which is the cause of the chain, appears in its original form. But even if you imagine for millions of years, you can never imagine the dissolution of space and therefore you can never imagine the original nature of God.

God is beyond space and God is the permanently unknowable region even for the intelligence enriched with science and logic. Hence, God is a permanent wonder and the creation consists of some knowable regions of knowledge without any wonder and also some temporarily unimaginable regions with temporary wonder. Now the word Maya can be used for the wonder, which is both permanent (God) and which is temporary also (the deeper layers of the world up to the space).

How to overcome worry

Try to enjoy the worry
When worry is inevitable, enjoy it and be wise
Even continued happiness leads to mental worry
Thus happiness and worry must be alternative
If you are worried by the continued happiness
You are worried at the cost of the result of your good effort

Instead of this it is better to get worry at the cost of your sin
Let the sin give some trouble and then you worry out of it
In this way the result of the sin is spent and the not the result of good effort
The loss in your present worry may be compensated in the future
But the time lost in your past worry cannot be compensated
Because the life span of any human being is fixed

Your loss may be compensated by million times in the future
But even one second of your lost time can never be compensated
Therefore, understand this and think about the value of the time
This knowledge of the value of time is called as ‘Kala Janana’
Which means the knowledge of the future that you should know,

Which provides the possibility of the compensation of all the loss
Except the loss of time, therefore, time is the most precious.
You may waste anything that can be again procured in the future,
But never waste the time, which you can never compensate.

There are two ways to escape the mental worry in this world
The first way is by obtaining the peace, which is zero
The second way is by achieving the bliss, which is plus
Worry is minus, peace is zero and bliss is plus
To escape minus, either you should be in zero or in plus

Bliss can be obtained only from the Lord in this world
Since Veda says that the Lord alone is bliss “Anando Brahma”
Veda also says that the Lord alone can give you the bliss
“Esha Hyeva Anandayati” this is quite logical in fact
The water is alone cool and so it alone can give coolness
Whatever is said in the Vedas, it is always logical

How to enjoy worry

Never allow the worry to enter your heart in difficult times. When it knocks the door, shout at it to go away. Don’t open the doors of the mind. If you allow it, it is a thief which steals away your energy. It is like the dog that steals away your food. It is like the cat that steals away your milk. Food is your energy and milk is your courage. When you loose courage and energy tension is created, which is the source of all chronic diseases. Doctors say that the tension raises the level of lactic acid in the blood, which opens all the doors for all the chronic diseases. The physical health is spoiled because the mind and body are related to each other. The illness in the body affects the mind. The tension in the mind affects the body. Such tension results in the loss of memory and loss of intelligence.

In such state you are completely inefficient to plan for the solution. Your body is incapable of executing any plan. The worry cannot solve the problem and moreover it weakens you so that you will become permanently incapable to solve the problem.

Therefore neither should you run away from the life nor should allow the worry to enter your mind. If your realization about the unreality of the cinema, which is this life, continues, instead of worry, you can enjoy the problem in your life, which is as good as a tragic scene in the cinema. You may argue that you are involved in the life and not standing outside the life to be a spectator. This argument is not correct. The answer for your argument is that you can enjoy the tragic scene even if you are involved in it just like an actor acting in a drama.

If you are aware that the drama is unreal and if you are aware that you are only acting the role which is also unreal, you can still enjoy the drama as a spectator of the cinema even though you are involved in it.

Whenever you face difficulties and if you have not realized the unreality of the world (forms and feelings), there are two ways to solve your problem. One way is in natural level and the other way is in super natural level. The nature is the separated power from the Lord, which follows the rules of the logic and is called as Prakruti. The nature is separated because it becomes the separate object to be observed by God who is the spectator. God created this universe to see it for His entertainment. Even if He enters the world as human incarnation the spectatorship and entertainment continues because there is no difference between cinema and drama as far as its unreality is considered. Therefore if your problem is at the level of the nature, try to solve it using your courage and energy without allowing the worry into your mind which steals both these.

If your problem is beyond the level of the nature, then also you cannot solve it by allowing the worry. In such case the super power (Maya) has to enter into this world sent by God. The Maya is never separated from God unlike the Prakruti. Now, only the super power of the God can solve your problem and for this you must concentrate on God. For such concentration also, you need the energy and therefore you should not allow the worry to enter your mind even in this case. For doing concentration on God, you require the congenial atmosphere of real devotees around you. Therefore whenever the problem that requires the super power to interfere enters your life, you have to immediately prevent the entry of the worry into your mind and you have to enter into the association of real devotees so that you can concentrate on God for help.

If you remain in the association of the ordinary human beings, they will magnify the impossibility of the solution and force the worry to enter your mind. If you leave the association of these dirty people, who do not want to solve your problem and if you enter into the association of real devotees, you can easily concentrate on God for help. God will give an immediate stay because the problem cannot be cancelled forever due to the cycle of deeds presided by justice. However, the temporary stay has the possibility of permanent solution also. After the stay, there may be a chance for you to become a liberated soul by entering into the service of the God in which case your file may be condemned permanently.

If you are ungrateful to the help which involves the super power of God, your file will be opened after some time and the punishment can be given to you in some other form so that your impression about the cancelling of that problem by God is not disturbed. Therefore, at every step of your life, become grateful to God and transform yourself as a liberated soul through service to Him which alone can give the permanent solution.

You may be compensated regarding your loss in course of time. Thus you may recover the loss but the time you spent in worry can never be compensated.  Since your lifetime is a fixed quantum, the loss of time cannot be compensated. If you entertain yourself with enjoyment even during the time of loss, the time is not lost. When the loss is compensated you have gained both the time and the lost thing.

Spiritual Solution for Tensions and Anxiety

Realisation and repeated memorization of the true knowledge is the only one solution for this problem. The ignorance is responsible for all the anxiety and tensions. One should know that every one has climbed the time (Kala), which is the running train. Death is the station at which one has to get down. Then every one should face the Lord for the enquiry.

After the enquiry one will get either permanent happiness or permanent misery. The journey of this train to that station is the human life, which is only a fraction of second when it is compared to the infinite stream of time set up from the beginning of the creation. To think that the life is very long itself is ignorance. Every one is sitting in a closed compartment and realisation of the truth is the window through which every one should peep to find the infinite time stream. Only on such comparison the human life becomes a small fraction of a second. When the realization is absent and when there is no comparison the lifetime appears to be very long. First one should cross this illusion of time. Similarly, the illusion of the place. The earth looks very large under the ignorance.

But if one realises the infinite space of this universe the entire earth is a small fraction of a pinhead. Similarly one gets a comfortable seat and sits on it thinking that he is settled in the life. Another person is moving in the compartment in search of a comfortable seat and according to him he is not settled. But when both these people look out through the window, which is realisation of truth, then both realise that both are moving. Similarly one thinks that his co-passengers are his close relatives and is worried about them. But they get down at their respective stations and do not remember this fellow at all. Nobody remembers their relatives of his previous birth. If one realises that the so-called close relatives like parents, wife, children etc., are only the co-passengers who get down at their stations, he will not have any tension or anxiety about them. He does his duties without these two. Similarly when one thinks that he is his body itself, he feels that diseases damage him.

But if one realises that this body is only a dramatic dress needed for his role in the present drama, he is not worried about the damage of the body. He feels that as if his shirt is damaged. During the journey in the train one must constantly think about the interview and prepare for it. In such case he gets permanent happiness after the enquiry even though he is traveling in a comfortless third class compartment. If one forgets the interview and is attracted by the factors in the closed compartment, he is going to get permanent misery even if he travels by a first class compartment.

Thus, something is good according to the ignorant people and that is bad according to the realised scholars. This world is full of ignorant people and only very few realised scholars are present. Therefore the behaviour of a realised soul is criticized and mocked by the large public. But all the souls will realise the truth after the death when they face the enquiry. But it becomes too late by that time and nothing can be rectified. Thus, a realised scholar never cares for the public and proceeds in the true path decided by the true realisation. Only such true knowledge can remove the tensions and anxiety. The path of devotion can make you forget the pain temporarily for some time. It cannot remove the pain and anxiety on a permanent basis. No other methods like rituals, worships, etc., can solve this problem except the frequent memorization of the true knowledge. True knowledge is the comprehensive outlook of the whole situation i.e., realised by looking through the window of the train. Ignorance is the limited look inside the closed compartment, which is related to the comforts of seats and the bonds of co-passengers.

At the Lotus Feet of His Holiness Sri Dattaswami

Anil Antony

http://www.universal-spirituality.org
Universal Spirituality for World Peace
antonyanil@universal-spirituality.org

14 thoughts on “Can we understand God through Logic? And other silly questions.

  1. Hey, pretty cool logo on that universal-spirituality website. 

    I have the feeling this would make more sense to me if I were more familiar with its culture of origin.

  2. A google search on the name Sri Dattaswami shows that he posts this stuff all over the web. Doesn’t seem to make any more sense there, though.

  3. I stopped reading after the first half of the first sentence. “Previous human incarnation” is a great big hint that the author is either writing fiction or drooling more than a little.

  4. (all quotes from entry) On the thread ‘Can we understang god through logic?’;

    (this topic interests me, what’s odd is how I was discussing it at work only yesterday). I would be very interested in talking to you, and I think you’ll draw interesting things in a certain film represented by my avatar (my favourite). My arguement is that in order for his existence to be accomodated, a hypothetical god needs to be imaginable at least in a random system, because if no dimension can hold your existence, then all that’s left for you is oblivion – to be aware of something you need to be able to create via imagination some model of some aspect of it’s effect on you in your head. Also if god were completely unimaginable, he wouldn’t be aware of his own existence (though that might be a possibility, albeit a hard to imagine-for-yourself scenario)

    Generally the devotees are trained in the logic pertaining to the imaginable items in the world

    You can only think about and make decicions concerning stuff you are able to imagine, i agree, but even in dreams it’s very difficult to imagine stuff that you had no prompt to imagine in the first place. This makes me think that if everything/the world at least was imaginary, it could only be imagined randomly – since if you were a hypothetical god you can’t build a model for intelligently design without any concept to start with, indeed a hyothetical god themselves would need to be imagined, and I can only explain that possibility using an infinite number of imaginary dimensions (basically a multiverse) where everything with a positive possibility is guaranteed to show up at some point because there is an infinite number of oppertunities for it to occur. An infinite number of imaginary dimensions should automatically exist because that itself has a positive probability, and there is an infinite number of oppertunities for that to occur. See SEB wiki on Thought Experiment.

    For example since the black color of the mud (cause) is entering into pot (its effect), the conclusion is that the nature of cause enters its effect. This conclusion is applied to another worldly example and they say that the bright color of the gold lump (cause) must also enter the chain (its effect).

    I don’t understand this fully – how can a colour be a cause/reason for something that it has little relation to? Granted, people might not make gold chains if the colour was different, but if for example plants grew in only blue soil for some reason or another, you would still use that in the pot

    God and His link with creation is also unimaginable because it is a link between unimaginable God and imaginable creation. This does not mean that logic is useless. It is useful in denying an imaginable item claimed to be unimaginable

    If god was the most fundamental existing thing, in my mind it needs to be imaginable by a random system, the probability only needs to be positive in order for it to be possible, and there is an infinite number of oppertunities in my mind. If god were completely unimaginable, I can’t see how any system could accomodate his existence in any dimension, indeed in order to interact with a dimension, i’m inclined to think that dimension needs some concept of you in order to be linked, but the contents themselves at least don’t (ie you can eat a plant and it won’t know any better).

    In order to be unimaginable you need to have an infinite term describing you somewhere, but there is no physical model i’m aware of of something being infinite in relation to something else, so that to me means that if god did have an infinite term, that term had no beginning or at least no relation to time, because if you have a beginning and have therefore existed for a finite time, everything related to time would also be a finite term, and hence imaginable

    I agree that there would need to be a link of sorts if god/other spirit both existed and was able to interact; otherwise there would be no mechanism to enter/leave the body on either side of life (forcing you into oblivion if you’re trapped in physical dimensions), and the link would also be necessary if the big bang was instigated by a spirit, because that counts as interaction. If life is a dream, then there also needs to be a link through the dream to have any control in the dream and to transcend in/out, just as our conciousness is able to interact with sleep dreams, and hence there is a link in that example

    For example in the ancient time the awareness is thought to be independent energy like a free electromagnetic wave in space. But today due to advancement of science and analytical faculty it is clearly proved that awareness is not an independent item but it is completely dependent on the co-existence of functioning nervous system and the inert heat energy produced by the oxidation of food

    Depends on whether or not you’re conciousness is interacting with a physical body – in a dream I at least don’t get the same sensory input. It’s true though whichever angle someone takes that physically caused things, like hunger, pain, drugs, etc, have effects on the mind which affects conciousness. If conciousness did come from outside and was temporarily accomodated in this dimension by the brain, it makes some sense that things affecting the brain – the main linkage – have an effect on state of mind viewed from this end

    That which was wonderful yesterday is clear today. It was unimaginable but now is imaginable. Therefore, there is a knowable region extending up to space in the creation

    I didn’t understand what you meant here until reading further in, what you mean is that we learn stuff, and that the feeling of understanding more is pleasent. If there is a finite quantity of stuff to learn, I wonder what the hurry is to use up all this pleasure supply, some things make life generally easier when known though by giving peace of mind – though the wonder fades it has a long-term stabalising effect. I don’t understand why the wonder comes about in the first place, or why it should be allowed to ever fade, because if there was a mechanism to forget everything and start again simply for the pleasure of learning, then you have to go through loads of unpleasent stuff too and won’t appreciate your own reason to doing it prior to forgetting, and I don’t see much reason for there being any negativeness or incomplete understanding if god did exist – why wouldn’t people know everything innately from the start, not needing to understand anymore and kept permanently euphoric? For people to not know everything from the start, and for wonder from learning to have a limited span, suggests to me that if there is a god, at least one of the following of his aspects isn’t 100%; goodness, influence, logic, existence (could be partial), because there seems no good point to me of making people as anything other than infinitely and permanently knowlegable and happy from the start

    But the layers of unimaginable nature will certainly be analyzed by logic and science in the course of time

    I’m not convinced that everything can be known by science (indeed you at least go onto saying this in terms of god at least, but it may go into other things too) especially if we only see the physical end of things, that prevents us from observing possible links and further aspects to things simply because we cannot see or measure them. Also thermodynamics is observed in static systems anyway to be such that energy is completly contained within the physical dimensions – you would observe a break in the rules from the physical end if you were to move energy between a physically observed dimension and a non-physically observed one. This doesn’t meen it can’t be done, it just doesn’t tend to happen when people are looking. It’s possible that if energy did transcend in/out of non-physical dimensions, that the system would overall have a constant total of energy, but then again it’s also possible that there is no such thermodynamic restriction outside physical dimensions, we simply don’t know

    p.s. – I will comment on the other thread topics within this thread seperately when I get time

  5. Brock: Isn’t it beautiful when two like minds find each other…

    And I find it beautiful that you and I are always of such like mind, Brock. My first thought upon poring over this declamation was that Distant Claws was going to have a field day with it.

  6. LOL, I know. I read the entry late last night and actually tried to make some sense of it then got a headache and gave up. But not before thinking distant claws is really gonna relate to this somehow.

    I remember when this site used to intimidate me, because the commenters were so damn smart, not because they were enigmatic.

  7. DOF writes…

    I have the feeling this would make more sense to me if I were more familiar with its culture of origin.

    Good, it’s comforting to know that I’m not the only one who was left thinking that way.

    I also kinda figured if anyone would jump on this it would be Distant Claws and, surprisingly, his reply actually made the original entry a little more understandable. Which is just stunning to me as usually DC’s replies leave me scratching my head just as much as the original entry did.

  8. Aww, thanx guys&gal!

    Brock: Isn’t it beautiful when two like minds find each other…

    I agree, it’s analagous in some ways to a kind of spin coupling between similar minds, this I guess would also apply to a hypothetical future romance – the coupling creates a more favourable state that they can both occupy, albeit coupling always costs some degrees of freedom if they must move in accord to each other. The lucky lady won’t know what she let herself in for… wink

    SS: My first thought upon poring over this declamation was that Distant Claws was going to have a field day with it

    Thankyou, it’s nice to know smile
    In case anyones wondering where I got the name Distant Claws, there is a certain type of polymer called ‘telekelic’ (tele=distant, kelic=claws) which has a functional group on each terminus of the chain, the claw. Since these terminusses are seperated by a long chain, that is where the distant bit describes. The functional groups are useful for attatching the chain to either a small molecule, or another chain, but the physically observed properties of an end group is somewhat diluted down by the length of the chain. It’s entirely possible to link the 2 ends together after some little conversions

    Webs: Since I don’t do drugs I am not even going to attempt to understand what was written above…

    Getting high is the best part of my subject – they teach you indirectly what you need to know to make these + some explosives, and you can get high on boiling solvents on the bench as you go about making something (once I got in trouble over the safety of leaving light petroleum on a hot plate and coming back to find it had all evaporated). I’d be curious to connect an explosive to a narcotic, though I think the market might be a little select.

    An altered mind state also gives you a new perspective on the world and you see some interesting things, on which to think about – considering those who don’t need stimulation, suppose if schizophrenics were correct all along? who knows…

    Les: Which is just stunning to me as usually DC’s replies leave me scratching my head just as much as the original entry did

    I just got this strange notion of headlice travelling through the internet somehow, but nah, I don’t have them (to the best of my knowledge).

    I needed a few minutes to figure it out, I think it takes someone talking in more riddles than me to have that effect

  9. I was bored and made it through another paragraph.

    This does not mean that logic is useless. It is useful in denying an imaginable item claimed to be unimaginable.

    Correction, this should read: “This means that logic is useful in denying an imaginary item claimed to be real.

  10. So he doesn’t just pester Christians.  A Christian youth bulletin board I’ve been a part of for years has had him drop by on multiple occassions to leave massive posts and then not stick around for any dicussion.  It’s like the closest thing I’ve seen to Hindu or New Age or whatever he is proselytizing.  He came across as strictly Hindu on the Christian boards.  He kept trying to convince the admins that Christianity and hinduism serve teh same God and have the same teachings and whatnot.  It was ridiculous.  I think he eventually got banned or just stopped coming.  Either way his posts were getting deleted because they amounted to unwanted spam.

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