“Brahma, it is I, the Personality of Godhead, who was existing before the creation, when there was nothing but Myself. Nor was there the material nature, the cause of this creation. That which you see now is also I, the Personality of Godhead, and after annihilation what remains will also be I, the Personality of Godhead.” (Shrimad Bhagavatam, 2.9.33)
अहम् एवासम् एवाग्रे
नान्यद् यत् सद्-असत् परम्
पश्चाद् अहं यद् एतच् च
यो ऽवशिष्येत सो ऽस्म्य् अहम्
aham evāsam evāgre
nānyad yat sad-asat param
paścād ahaṁ yad etac ca
yo ‘vaśiṣyeta so ‘smy aham
It seems rather easy to disprove the idea of God. Just make an argument along the following lines:
“See the tragedy and suffering pervasive in this world. No one ever has enough. Money is at a premium. Those who earn a high salary sacrifice time spent with friends and family. There is constant stress. Someone can be walking down the street, innocently contemplating the future, when everything ends. If there is a God, then at least let Him be seen. Let the believers provide visual, empirical evidence. Otherwise, I will remain skeptical to the idea.”
The same can actually be done in the reverse. Make the skeptics support their claims through evidence. Prove how certain things can occur, which would have to be in the absence of a central authority figure who extends beyond the boundaries of delineated time and space.
1. Leave the furniture unassembled after opening
Since there is no God, there is no creator. Everything manifested on its own. Moreover, the many aspects of nature, both simple and complex, operate without any governing authority. Therefore, the following situation should not present a problem:
“I am sick and tired of assembling furniture. The family has moved to a new place and little by little we are adding items to the rooms. I thought it would be easier to order most things online and then set them up myself after delivery. After some time, however, I became fed up. I am not ready to unbox heavy items and figure out how to assemble, especially after a hard day at the office.
“My choice is to simply let the pieces sit there. They will assemble themselves. That is the meaning to the lack of a creator. Sure, my wife yells at me every day to get my act together, to finish what I started, but I am confident that everything will work out in the end.”
2. Lay out the ingredients on the kitchen counter
“The price of takeout is a little steep. Moreover, in that case we can’t control what goes into the preparation. I really don’t want to call up another restaurant and ask them what items they can make without onion and garlic. I’m resigned to the fact that everyone makes horrible food, using disgusting canola oil, and that the consuming public just doesn’t know any better.
“No big deal. We will cook for ourselves. I have laid out the necessary ingredients on the kitchen counter. Right now I am resting on the sofa. My wife keeps nagging me to return to the kitchen and start cooking. I have assured her that we will be eating soon, for the necessary ingredients are there. Somehow everything will work out.”
3. Turn on the car and leave it in the park position
“I’m not sure why everyone sitting inside is so upset. We have the necessary means of transportation. This car is state of the art. The rear camera is amazing. There are guides to help you park. The front display is great, too, since the system integrates with the smartphone.
“Yet the passengers are anxious. I have started the car and left it in the ‘park’ position. They insist on more effort. They keep screaming about the need to drive. I told them that everything will happen automatically. No need to think too much. After all, nature has no creator. The sun rises and sets on its own, so why can’t the car behave similarly?”
4. Wait for the laundry to clean itself
“Yes, I understand dirty clothes are piling up. Both hampers are full. No, I don’t see a need to buy another one. Just throw the extra clothes on the floor. Somehow they will get clean. There are machines, after all. I am not lifting a finger. Don’t expect me to carry such a heavy load anywhere.”
These are just a few examples illustrating how action is necessary for a consequence. Even if the result does not manifest for long or if the outcome is the inverse of that desired, there still has to be some effort applied.
अदृष्टगुणदोषाणामध्रुवाणां तु कर्मणाम्
नान्तरेण क्रियां तेषां फलमिष्टं प्रवर्तते
adṛṣṭaguṇadoṣāṇāmadhruvāṇāṃ tu karmaṇām
nāntareṇa kriyāṃ teṣāṃ phalamiṣṭaṃ pravartate
“Unseen and indefinite are the good and bad reactions of fruitive work. And without taking action, the desired fruits of such work cannot manifest.” (Lakshmana speaking to Lord Rama, Valmiki Ramayana, Aranya Kand, 66.17)
Take the same concept and relate it to the creation at large. The sun, the moon, the planets, the stars and everything else visible in nature do not manifest out of nothing. Neither can a certain set of chemicals collide randomly to create. Otherwise, the same reactions could be reproduced to achieve a similar result.
Fortunately, there is the Shrimad Bhagavatam to provide clarity. The Supreme Personality of Godhead directly empowers someone known as the creator, Vidhata, to do the necessary work in a specific universe. Though Brahma gets credit for the resulting output, though he gets honored as the creator, there is still someone before Him.
Bhagavan is there before anything manifested and He will remain after everything is annihilated. He is the cause of all causes, sarva-karana-karanam. Nothing can happen without His sanction first. There is the associated concept of Supersoul, Paramatma. Though He may not be seen, God is everywhere. The very results to action are the supporting evidence. The empirical data is there, should the discerning eye be open to notice it.
Ready for eyes discerning,
Existence of creator learning.
Like with furniture pieces leaving,
Finished product not receiving.
Or ingredients for dish to make,
Required that initiative to take.
Creator in this universe as well,
But directions from Vishnu to tell.
Categories: the four