“You are the origin without beginning, middle or end. You have numberless arms, and the sun and moon are among Your great unlimited eyes. By Your own radiance You are heating this entire universe.” (Arjuna, Bhagavad-gita, 11.19)
You’re open to the idea. It’s not like you are strongly against the concept that the majority of the population subscribes to. The issue is that you prefer empirical evidence. This is the way to avoid fanaticism. Observation and experiment. That is the foundation of true science. Not mere consensus. Not bullying by some political faction. A real test that can repeatedly produce the same result.
To satisfy your requirement someone proposes the following. Suppose that God appears before you. The identification is through self-proclamation, i.e. the person tells you they are the Almighty. The first step to your empirical proof is right in front of you.
The easiest test to perform is deathlessness. If the person is who they say they are, then surely they won’t ever die. The issue here, which may not be so obvious in the beginning, is what amount of time is sufficient for proving the claim? One year? One hundred? One thousand? In fact, the person observing must eventually quit their body. That is the influence of time.
Thus we see that from empirical evidence alone it is impossible to prove or disprove the existence of God. There must be an element of faith involved. The Vedas say that He is indeed ananta, or without end. There are some past incidents which help in understanding.
1. Taking the form of Draupadi’s sari
She was helpless. There were capable people around, who could have interceded, but they remained silent. People who were previously proud of their allegiance to dharma [religious principles] now sat on their hands while a woman was being persecuted for no reason.
Everyone in the assembly knew that a woman should be protected, especially if she is not attacking anyone. Compounding the sinfulness of the deed was the woman’s well-known chastity. Though Draupadi was the shared wife of the Pandava brothers, she was considered to possess the highest character.
Those brothers lost her in a wager, and so the Kaurava side was ready to show her naked in front of everyone. The greatest embarrassment, they assumed, but they forgot one thing. Draupadi was protected by her well-wisher, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
At the last moment, calling out to Shri Krishna in full surrender, Draupadi was saved. The Lord took the form of her sari, and so no matter how much the enemies pulled, the garment would not come off of her. The sari itself became ananta.
2. The universal form
Later on the same Shri Krishna showed the virata-rupa to the leading warrior for the Pandavas, Arjuna. This is known as the universal form, as it is the complete everything put into a single image. It is three dimensional and also dynamic. No one can imagine such a vision, and so a person who sees it gets some idea of God and how Krishna is non-different from Him.
A similar vision was shown to the wicked Duryodhana previously. The fiend considered binding Krishna, who was visiting as an emissary to prevent war. Upon learning of the crazy idea, Krishna showed the universal form and asked Duryodhana to try to bind it. Though He sometimes gives the vision of an innocent and small child, though He is worshiped in the temple through the statue form known as the deity, God is actually ananta. It is impossible for anyone to catch Him without His help.
3. Ananta Deva Himself
One expansion of God is known as Ananta Deva. This is a serpent who has an unlimited number of hoods. He is behind the force known as gravity. It is due to God in this feature that the planets remain where they are, that they do not fall out of place and cause chaos in the universe.
Ananta Deva is also the lead glorifier of the Almighty. Since the beginning of time he has been singing the gunas, or transcendental glories, of Shri Krishna. The wonderful boon is that he has yet to stop. That is to say there is no end to God’s greatness, which allows devotees to continue in devotional service without end.
Draupadi as target for embarrassment tagged,
Fiendish Kauravas into assembly dragged.
Naked hoping in front of all to show,
Of Krishna’s mercy little to know.
The Lord ananta as that sari taking,
So failure despite great effort making.
In universal form same feature displaying,
On Ananta Deva the many planets laying.
Categories: the three