What Does Atheism Mean

[Krishna's lotus feet]“They say that this world is unreal, that there is no foundation and that there is no God in control. It is produced of sex desire, and has no cause other than lust.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 16.8)

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असत्यम् अप्रतिष्ठं ते
जगद् आहुर् अनीश्वरम्
किम् अन्यत् काम-हैतुकम्

asatyam apratiṣṭhaṁ te
jagad āhur anīśvaram
kim anyat kāma-haitukam

“The context of many of our discussions is ‘atheism versus devotion.’ There is the often invoked comparison to the Vedic concept of suras against asuras. The good guys fighting off the bad guys. You have to place the terms in the proper order. The meaning doesn’t properly reflect the truth when the truths are transposed.

“This is because the asuras are the ones harassing. They are the aggressors. They cannot leave well enough alone. If there is a government leader who must oversee two citizens only, if one is a sura and the other an asura, they each get their own plot of land. They should live happily amongst one another, but that is rarely the case.

“At the root of the asura’s way of living is envy. It is not that they merely don’t believe in God; they will make sure that others do not worship, at all. The sura has no choice but to defend themselves. They may take precautionary measures in the future, understanding the nature of asuras whenever given power or dominion.

“But in the modern day people might get offended by being labelled an atheist. To them, that term might mean rejecting the religion of the region. The one inherited from the parents, insisted upon by the corrupt institutions, with no logic or reasoning at the foundation. They are an atheist by choice, because they know for sure that what others are pushing on them is not valid.

“Okay, I will admit that there are the scientists who think that we are only a set of chemicals. Nothing special to the arrangement, we will return to that state in the future. Everything is based on sex, alone.”

“There is certainly variety, however. You will not meet two atheists who think alike. How do we handle such a delicate matter? Is there a better term to use to give an appropriate designation? The atheist in this case might actually learn that they are true believers in God, once they get a proper explanation, as is readily forthcoming from Vedic literature.”

His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada gives the definition that if someone claims to not believe in God, this actually means that they believe they are God. This is because they think that no one is greater than them.

We don’t have to rely on the theoretical for further understanding. We have the classic example of Hiranyakashipu, the leader of the Daityas. His story is well-documented in Vedic texts like Shrimad Bhagavatam and Vishnu Purana.

Hiranyakashipu heard about God as Vishnu, but he did not want to follow. Daityas are a kind of asura, and so he kept true to form. He was intent on removing worship of Vishnu from the world. Hiranyakashipu thought that he could become God, which means that no one would be greater than himself.

The issue for the atheist, under this definition, is that they are eventually compelled to believe. They will meet a force greater than themselves. There is no way around the reality. That greater force, the one to whom they must submit, is known as death.

In this regard, we could say that the atheist meets God. Their meeting with Him is in the face of death. That is their interaction. They see God as the great force that finally exposes their foolishness. He reveals everything to be a lie, that the victim was never as great as they thought.

[Narasimha killing]The perspective of the devotee is to see God everywhere and all the time, sarvatra and sarvada. They may even look upon the exact face which greets the atheist. In Hiranyakashipu’s case, it was Vishnu as Narasimha. This was ferocious and fear-inspiring for the Daitya, but peaceful and calming to the devotee Prahlada. The sura way is preferred because there is the chance to always see God, to welcome His presence, to submit to His will, and to be protected moving forward.

In Closing:

The devotee way preferred,
Since meeting not deferred.

To that precise moment of death,
Where ferocious vision to get.

Better when always seeing,
The Supreme Divine Being.

Who perpetually in superior standing,
And of opulences outstanding.

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1 reply

  1. Radhe Radhe ❤️ oshriRadhekrishnaBole ❤️ Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
    Jay Jay Shree Siya Ram

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