The Weird Dichotomy


Shivaji K. Moitra 


© Copyright 2021 by Shivaji K. Moitra 


the battle of Kurukshetra in the Mahabharata.

          The battle of Kurukshetra in the Mahabharata

India has long been known as the land of Gods and spiritualism. For ages, the mountains, hills and jungles of our country have been the abode of numerous sages and sadhus who practiced penance and meditation in the lap of nature to gain the knowledge of the Gods and to attain spiritual powers. Some of the monks mentioned in the Hindu religious scriptures and epics like Agastya muni, Viswamitra muni, Vasishtha muni, Kapila muni and Valmiki were famed for their immense knowledge and legendary spiritual powers.  Even the demons and powerful kings were known to be afraid of their arcane powers and never dared to displease them.

But these days, as you all know, the babas (self-proclaimed god-men) are no more confined to the remote hills and mountains of the country. Today numerous babas are on the air. The TV babas, the You Tube babas and all those high profile and high flying babas are crowding the cyber space and vying with one another to offer their religious discourses and flaunt their wisdom and their superior knowledge of the Gods with the sole intension of earning fame and a significant following.

But as you can see, I’m no baba. I’m just a lesser mortal and a firm believer in the Almighty – the ultimate power in the universe.

Today, I shall make a humble attempt to emphasize the solid reasons behind the belief in what we believers call God, the source of all the faiths on earth but in an entirely different way.

As all of you know, in this age of science and technology there are millions of people around the world who either doubt the existence of God or totally reject the very idea of God. Although their numbers are far less than that of the believers, these egoistic advocates of science and technology love to ridicule our belief in the Almighty as mere superstition and consider our faiths as useless and illogical. These hard-headed skeptics, atheists and agnostics among us argue that whatever cannot be seen or felt by the human senses or through experiments simply does not exist. In their opinion anything and everything that happens spontaneously on the earth and in the universe can be explained by science and that there is still no evidence to suggest that the hand of God makes everything possible. Yet, they have no answers to the great mysteries behind the origin of life on earth or the logic behind the existence of our solar system, the galaxies and the universe. They cannot comprehend that the telltale signs of the presence of God lie all around us.

Let me ask you a few simple questions and put some established facts before you which I strongly believe would render the skeptics, the atheists and the agnostics among us speechless and green with envy but shall reinforce the faith of the billions of God-fearing people on earth.

First, the questions:

How does a newborn calf or a kitten know where to find its first meal? 

Who teaches a Chameleon or an Octopus how to blend itself with its surroundings by producing just the perfect colours and textures on its skin?

How does a single microscopic cell in the womb understand the complex blueprint of the animal it has to produce?

Who is that great chemist behind the development of a cobra’s venom, the complex chemistry of which is precisely designed to attack and destroy the nervous system of its prey?

Can any laboratory in the world produce even a single blade of grass or a rose petal?

And the ultimate question of course is: what is life and consciousness?

Does any scientist on earth or any atheist have an answer to any of these simple questions? Certainly not. 

Leaving nature and our earth below, I shall now enter the realm of space and put before you a few of the startling facts that defy the laws of physics and mock our scanty knowledge of the universe and deep space.

We all know that our earth, the other planets of our solar system, the sun and even our galaxy the Milky Way are in constant motion. But neither Newton nor any other physicist or mathematician could ever explain who set them in motion.

Similarly, Quantum Mechanics has so far failed to unravel the mysteries behind the origin of matter and the universe. Nobody knows how everything that we see in the sky could be produced from nothing. The Big Bang theory is in a mess as physicists and astronomers are busy debating the shuttlecock and no boundary theories and are still wondering if the universe is smooth or warped. In fact, they have lately discovered strange cosmic creations dating back to a time beyond Big Bang. Even the exact nature of light, the most ubiquitous phenomenon in the universe, is still a mystery. Nobody is sure if it constitutes of particles or waves since light has properties of both. The myriad of experiments conducted to understand what is happening all around us and why could lead us nowhere so far.

Isn’t it true that the more we get to understand about life, nature, our earth and the universe, the more confused we tend to become? No wonder, all our knowledge of matter and energy acquired through experiments till the present time could not lead us beyond the production of the Atom bombs, rockets and artificial satellites.

Yet, our sadhus and sages have long been known to acquire the knowledge of the Gods and enlightenment through penance and meditation. The great religious preachers like Lord Buddha, Lord Christ and Chaitanya Mahaprabhu were believed to wield immense spiritual powers attained by virtue of their penance and meditation.

Similarly, the mythological characters described in our epics, the Ramayana and Mahabharata and the religious texts, their flying chariots, heat and sound-seeking arrows, invisible weapons, hominoid warriors and the tales of their binocular vision and bewildering feats should not be dismissed as mere fairytales. Even our age-old beliefs in the supernatural and incorporeal beings like the spirits, demons, ghouls and ghosts may not be just figments of our imagination.

Nevertheless, there is no dearth of people who cast aspersions on the supernatural powers of the our sages, sadhus and hermits and ridicule the assertion of the believers that it is the hand of God that controls all those immensely strange, inexplicable and eternal events taking place not only on our tiny earth but also across the endless and timeless expanse of our universe. 

Let me explain why we must not throw into the realm of superstition anything and everything that we cannot see or feel with our senses or what cannot be discerned or defined by the present level of human intelligence and knowledge.

Today we can find the modern counterparts of the flying chariots, heat-seeking and sound-seeking arrows and humanoid warriors everywhere in the forms of aircrafts, missiles, torpedoes and robots respectively. Today we have telescopes, binoculars and gadgets nicknamed ‘Eyes in the sky’ that let us gaze far and beyond the horizon. So the description of Sanjoy’s live commentary of the battle of Kurukshetra in the Mahabharata from a place far from the spot of action may have been possible with the help of some primitive telescope-like instrument.

But the problem with the atheists and skeptics is that they do not realize that there exist numerous things all around us which we can neither see nor feel just because they are either beyond the purview of our senses or we aren’t tuned to comprehend their presence.

For example, every moment thousands of types of sound waves, electromagnetic waves and rays like ultrasonic and subsonic waves, radio waves, ultraviolet rays etc. criss-cross the space around us conveying subtle messages and hidden codes that are invisible and beyond the threshold of our senses. But the moment a wireless set, radio, a television, a computer or another gadget is tuned to catch the exact frequency and nature of the wave, it intercepts the data and reveals before our eyes and ears the sounds, visions and whatever information it had been conveying across the void of space. 

Similarly, it may not be bizarre to imagine that meditation can raise human beings to a very high spiritual level where it may not be impossible for the versatile human mind to precisely tune our brain waves to catch the signals and messages coming in from God, the supreme power and creator of everything from nothing. 

Even the great scientists like Einstein and Stefan Hawking had admitted that science cannot explain anything and everything happening around us or the mystery behind life on earth and that the realm of physics ends at the frontiers of metaphysics where science ends and philosophy begins. 

No wonder, Charles Darwin’s theories on evolution are also based on the underlying notion of some super intelligent guiding force that recognizes survival strategies on our planet and makes the right choices and moves in a consistent manner so that the wondrous diversity of life continues to flourish.

To the discerning eye of the believer, the hand of the Almighty is evident everywhere, be it inside a tiny seed or an embryo, in the creation of our unique environment, in the void of space or in our own thoughts. 

Therefore, notwithstanding the plethora of scintillating ideas of science fiction, the destiny of Mankind and even our planet may indeed be in the hands of God, the ultimate Superpower.

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