At 15, I decided I was an athiest.
Yeah, even before I figured out which college I’d like to go, which major I’ll pursue, which internship I intend to enroll in, or, as a matter of fact, which Hogwarts house I belong to or whether Kurt Cobain was a fitting ideal for me or not, I, with a tantalising certainty checked in the box corresponding to “ATHIEST” in an online form for a course I wasn’t even sure I was interested in studying.
My supposedly “rebellious” beliefs did not tag along well with the fact that I come from a very religious family. I learnt mantras before I learnt to spell. I was raised in hindu faith and go to a Catholic school where majority of my friends are muslims. My head instinctively ducks when I pass by a temple and I pray daily in the assembly to “A father who is in Heaven.”
So, where did this virus of an idea come from? What convinced me that the entity I have been taught to bow down to, to rely on, to have “his will be done” and my trespasses forgiven, is not real?
Science, maybe? Physics argues that it all started with a bang, an explosion of everything in an expanse of nothing. And it’s all still moving. Space is not absolute and so isn’t time. It is all ruddy dynamic, slowly tinkering towards its impending collapse. So, for all of it to fit in, this idea of an absolute God dwelling in the periphery of space, juggling the entire universe on his fingertips, has to be chucked out of the equation. And the irony of it all being that this all was suggested by Newton’s laws who refuted his own findings for they disproved the existence of his God!
So, yes I do not believe that there is some ringmaster-esque God out there, with the cords of my life entwined in his holy hands who lives in a sprawling extraterrestrial abode wiling away his time in plotting conspiracies and raas leelas, an ace accountant who keeps a meticulous track of good and bad karmas. But, does this make me that condescending, science-worshipping Athiest who looks down upon a child praying with a smirk, thinking-“You foolish, twit.” Or that Satanic person who will see a man drowning and say in jest-“ Call your God, now. Where is he, man?”. Or that pseudo-intellectual who will quote Hawking and Zachary on athiesm?
I beg to differ. I am just 16, with a heckload of experiences still in line to be unfolded, including spiritual encounters, if there are any. And I just refute this notion of an all-mighty, super human type of God. The one we are supposed to be afraid of, kneel down to and blindly worship. But, what if, if I may suggest, God is a metaphor for who we can become? You look at the mythologies and the myths. Gods ruled Ancient Greece, right? Zeus and Hades and Apollo and Venus and Artemis-all paragons of some vice or virtue and somewhere in their myths and fables, it’s all there. If we decode the gospels, shatter the myths, it all boils down to this-as Terrence McKenna says- we’re Gods and might as well get good at it!
And then there is our Universe. So vast and terrifying and beautiful. Extruded from a limitless void to become this dynamic, unfathomable thing we call home. Stringing together time and space and energy and gravity and life and death and hopes. Our hopes. Fits well in the standard definition of God, doesn’t it?
So, maybe God is real. Just not the one we think.