Grew up with the religious belief that God created everything and gave us free will; then I was introduced into the opposite belief: God did not create anything and we were all predestined.
Went from one extreme to the other on that belief.
I went through the full experience… The full polarity on God in one lifetime.
Could God create the Universe and not create the Universe at the same time?
Could God give us free will and predestination at the same time?
Isn’t the definition of God: Omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient?
Thus; if God created everything, then God created the Devil. He created his own nemesis.
“No! The Devil was an angel who used his free will to become the Devil.”
Isn’t God omniscient? He knew what was going to happen with his creation. Thus, God created temptation, God created salvation, damnation and Hell… Isn’t that God sort of Devilish? 🙂
If God did not create anything and we are all predestined… That God doesn’t fit the previous definition of “God.”
What could be the task of such a God ?
“To give us knowledge… as it is written in holy books.”
Sorry. That is not in the definition of God.
Knowledge only brings intellectual understanding.
Intellectual understanding does not bring a new consciousness.
“But…Why is a new consciousness important?”
Without a new consciousness, we cannot go to “His” Paradise. We cannot become “angels.” We cannot be “holy…” All of those “nice words” wouldn’t have any meaning.
Without a change of consciousness we can only pretend to be “good,” act agreed upon “good” actions but our thoughts, our feelings and our intentions will be as they typically are for most: Bad thoughts, ill feelings, hidden intentions..
“… I need to practice to have positive thoughts and positive feelings.”
We cannot change what we ARE by practicing. DOING does not change BEING.
How could we go to “Paradise” pretending to be something that we ARE not?
Do you see my logic? Do you see my reasoning?
That is knowledge. It is utterly worthless when it comes to change of consciousness.
“OK…What changes consciousness, then?”
The experiences of Life itself will bring change of consciousness when we allow it, when we align with Life.
Define your God. Worship Him. Love Him.
Nothing wrong with that.
Just remember that your God is only your God, not necessarily everyone else’s.
Definitely, the “One” is not the only One.
Perhaps in this understanding by going beyond deep beliefs, we could begin to explore consciousness and to trust our Life path, which has been set up for us to travel. There is nothing “special” to DO but to enjoy the journey; for wherever it may take us, it will be without doubt, what we need in our Life process.
Going North, just to come back South. Experiencing day, just to experience night.
Do we see how insane is to label one side of the duality “good or bad”?
That only will bring fear, shame, guilt and low self-esteem.
All fears will vanish, when we open up. 🙂
Tired of hearing easy solutions from others, I decided to find those solutions by myself.
The solution and the problem are different ends of the same rope.
-Take XYZ. You will feel energized.
Feel rushed and stressed out?
-Meditate. That will solve the problem.
Your girlfriend is angry with you?
-Just love her. Love is the answer.
Have a disease and want a cure now?
-Pray to God. He can help you.
Your “I” is the problem?
-Become One with Oneness… Practice “less-I-ness” to accomplish that.
Tell me your “problem” and “I” will give you the “solution.”
It is free of charge!
“But all your talk deals only with observation and awareness…”
Isn’t it interesting how we feel in a certain way, and we do not know why?
Nevertheless, “to know why” will not do a thing for us. To become aware of it, will.
“But… just awareness?”
My dear, if you were aware…really truly aware of what is going on, you would know.
Aware of your feelings, your emotions, the way your body feels during the day, aware of the way you talk. Aware of how you move. Aware of the way you breathe. Aware of how the “outside” penetrates the “inside,” and the inside the outside…aware of the thoughts going on in your mind…
“But… that is a lot of stuff to keep track of…”
For the “I,” yes.
Become aware of that.
“But what is the method, what is the thing that “I” must do to achieve that awareness?
There is no method. There is nothing to do.
Please keep this mantra in your awareness: “Everything the “I” does to fix his own perceived “problems,” it is just a distraction to be aware of itself.”
“That is nonsense. Then how can “I” “improve” “myself”?
By being aware that there is an “I” wanting to “improve.”
Want for an angel to help you “improve”? Want for a way to control things and the outcome of those things?
That is the “I” looking to survive.
Paradise as a distraction; anyone?
Do you think that “I” will go to Heaven?
One thing is for sure. “I” cannot go “there.” Neither “you.”
Don’t understand? Too cryptic? Perhaps “I” am too difficult?
Want for things to make sense? To be logical? Some nice story so you can tell “others”?
Your “spiritual” age may be the equivalent of a 1-year-old baby. This stuff may not make sense to you but in a few years, it may…
At that tender age, to believe in punishment by God or the Devil is a good thing. It is meant to shape you up… You, “bad boy…” 🙂
Pushed to “do things” so you could be rewarded by God in the future? Great tool to discipline you.
At that age to believe that your Life “now” is about “getting salvation” in the after life is indeed, a nice toy to play with. It will keep you busy, so you don’t get in trouble…
Oh…I see, you don’t believe. You call yourself an “atheist.” Are you “saved” from this sort of childhood?
No. You are in the same boat, but the opposite side. A believer or a non-believer call each other through the same phone number. A message is left in the answering machine, the other party will hear it, erase it and leave his own message. That is the game.
Enjoy that childhood because it will change… Sooner or later it will change.
At that time, you may want to read this article again. Perhaps it will make sense then.
“Cow does not remember when it was veal.” Paradoxically, even though the same…they are different.
Consciousness allows someone to perceive things in a particular way. According to that consciousness, we could have a limited understanding. To see things under a different perspective means to have the openness to accept newness. Honesty means to acknowledge our new perception despite a belief, a teaching, and a dogma.
Fear arrives through dishonesty.
Ahnanda is not concerned about denying or proving the existence of God or the Devil. Ahnanda is only concerned about finding his own beliefs. Rest assured, that this sharing is based on my own experience.
I have searched for God. I have found God. I have forgotten myself.
I found myself, then I found no-self and with that I found that all there is… is God. Although, many labels could be used to name it.
Do you want me to elaborate on that? It is for you to find out. It will be misunderstood for those who have not gone through the full experience.
“God created the Universe.”
Didn’t he create the Devil as well?
“NO. God has given us free will to choose.”
Really? Why is the Devil “wrong” then, isn’t he following his free will?
“Because he is against God.”
Is it “free will” as long as we do not go against God? That is not free will but manipulation. Isn’t that a devilish trait?
God and the Devil depend on each other to survive.
Believers are needed.
“But, I had an experience with God himself. I felt floating in bliss and with such love that it had to be God giving me this experience. It cannot be the Devil.”
The issue is not the experience of something extraordinary in our lives. The issue is the label that we have used to describe that.
“That must be God.”
The concept, the definition is added into that experience and through that a belief.
Let me “rephrase” your consciousness:
“I am unique. God has chosen me. Someone else’s experience is not the “true” one for I know God and they don’t.”
The clothes of Santa Claus do not make the one wearing it, as the “true” Santa. You have to believe in Santa, for that concept to exist. We make that concept alive.
Different people wear the Santa Claus’s clothing. Common agreement makes that clothing “special.”
“Knowing God” is meant to enhance the ego of the one who claims that. In my experience, it truly doesn’t matter if you “know God.”
Know yourself to find no-self. That matters to you and to me. Not to God or the Devil.
“God did not create the Universe. Everything already existed. “
If God did not create the Universe, why do we call him God then?
“Because, he is the Supreme.”
Isn’t that a belief based on the concept that God has to be the supreme? Aren’t we building up concepts upon concepts to make an ideal?
Because we have 2 different explanations of God; Is it possible for God to create the Universe and not to create the Universe at the same time?
“Well… One belief is right and the other is wrong.”
I suppose yours is “right,” correct? At the end, it is about “you.”
Beliefs are neither right nor wrong. They are just beliefs.
Accept a belief and your perception will be in one way.
Do not accept it and your perception will be in a different way.
Acknowledge the belief and let it go, and your perception will be yet in a different way.
What difference does it make to know who created the Universe?
What difference does it make to have intellectual answers to believe in?
Lost in the intellect, the mind, we forget the heart. That heart which is not meant to love “God alone,” but to love without restrictions.
Truly want to know what love is?
It is inversely proportional to the size of the “I.” That is the extent of your love. Love is being it.
How do you like that “definition”? 🙂
“What is your relationship with God?”
Until I find no-self, there cannot possibly be a relationship. I can call God my father, my lover, my everything… Those are just labels, ideals based on “ME.” Find no-self and the perception will be different.
A change in consciousness is not related with beliefs and intellectual answers.
Those things are meant to change behavior only, to make us believe that “we are transforming ourselves.”
The self, the “I” cannot transform itself. Every action or thought directed towards self-transformation will only follow an ideal, a learned belief.
For change to be “real” it has to be natural. Not manipulated in any way through the beliefs of the “I.”
When we step outside the boundaries of a belief system meant to delimit our consciousness and to keep us safe within the limits of our society’s collective beliefs, at that point we can explore, we could observe and be an active participant of Life.
“But… If I step away from my belief of a God; who will save “me” and protect “me” and take care of “me” in this Life of uncertainties, and in “my” next Life in the future… Who will be there for “me”?
That is not the question that a grown up could ask before leaving his parents’ home to move in a place by himself. That is a question that a kid could ask. The kid looks for that certainty, he calls “protection.”
Who will be there for you?
Freedom from a belief, freedom from ideals, freedom to experience life.
To be free was the dream of the slave. The dream of the one who wanted to express but couldn’t, the dream of the one who wanted to live and not just breathe.
For the one who is caught up with beliefs and ideals, for the one who breathes fear in every inhalation and repression in every exhalation, for that one freedom is meaningful, holy and necessary to enjoy life.
Freedom from the known, is for the one who is ready. It is a waste for the one who is not.
Living life in joy means to take the training wheels of beliefs, off the bike. You can fall, you can hurt yourself… but with courage, you will know how to ride the bike.
Someone whose consciousness perceives “good” and “bad,” is not ready to perceive Oneness.
“Yes… I BELIEVE in Oneness, but you have done wrong and you will be punished.”
The game of “good” and “bad” requires to reject that which we perceive to be “bad.” The fight against evil.
“ Err… but if “I” don’t fight against evil, what should “I” do?
The “I” should do nothing. Anything the “I” does will only perpetuate that which the “I” wants to fight against.
This could be misinterpreted as Gandhi’s “ahimsa,” when some people whose consciousness is full of “I” are told to suck it up and do nothing in front of their perceived “enemy.”
“Yes… but it worked. The British left the Indians alone.”
Observe how your response keeps separating people, that reflects your consciousness: British = bad, Indians= good.
Indians kept fighting against each other. Violence between religions appeared. Gandhi himself was a victim of that violence.
A person whose consciousness is not able to see how “good” and “bad” are interrelated is truly stuck in the belief that God is “good” even though, that person may not believe in a God.
“How is that?”
They believe to be “God” themselves. What they do to be “right.”
Notice how the word “God” is interpreted in different ways and assigned to different entities or beings through the belief of different religious systems, but the bottom line is that this word, “God” represents “good” and thus there is the opposite, evil, bad.
“If God is neither “good” nor “bad,” then what is what he does?”
NOTHING but to allow for Life to be as it has to be.
A religion in Oneness full of BELIEVERS is a dishonest endeavor.
Oneness is change of consciousness not of beliefs.
“Yes… but I should start believing in something, so that belief could be a reality later on.”
That is another belief. Be honest with your current level of consciousness. It has something to teach you.
It is time to acknowledge that consciousness makes the change and not a belief system. Consciousness changes through the assimilation of Life experiences and not through the indoctrination of a belief system.
Whether someone believes in God or not, it does not matter at all.
What truly matters is how open a person’s consciousness is to accept and appreciate all.
The duality of “good and evil” can only create fear and fear is not a vehicle for changing consciousness but only behavior.
Someone who behaves like an “angel” is not truly an angel but a fake.
Could you envision God and the Devil (Maya) together in an effusive embrace of Love? 🙂
Observe how your belief is not allowing you to perceive beyond your comfort level.
“It is the belief in God “bad” then?”
For God’s sake, it is not “bad.” Believe in whatever you wish. But acknowledge that your belief has as much weight as someone else’s. That is all.
Your “spiritual experience” is as valid as someone else’s.
The bottom line is opening in consciousness.
Have the openness and courage to change when your consciousness is capable of perceiving something different in the horizon, get out of your rigid mind and accept what your heart is calling for. Be honest with yourself.
That is the beginning of inner knowledge where beliefs are no longer needed. The training wheels are left aside.
Yesterday, I was with a group of “seekers” sharing in a lovely setting: A park overlooking a lively river.
All individuals from all walks of Life, beliefs and consciousness show up to those meetings. All are heard. It is a great setting to learn about consciousness.
The person leading the conversation read 2 excerpts, one of them from a Deepak Chopra’s book, which mentioned: “Change your thinking to change your Life.”
The other book was the “Hua Hu Ching” attributed to Lao Tzu, it went something like: “There is nothing to teach: no religion, no science, no information which will lead your mind back to oneness. Always the integral way is beyond words and beyond mind. Simply be aware of the oneness of things.”
One of the participants said: “Those teachings are contradictory.”
Without a doubt, that individual has a sharp intellect.
In which way are those teachings contradictory?
Obviously, Chopra’s is about the “I” changing things around: Thoughts, actions, beliefs, attitudes. That “I” is a little changing devil… 🙂 It is the world of the “doer.”
The “Hua Hu Ching” is about observation, awareness, letting the mind go away…
Both teachings will be beneficial according to the consciousness of the individual.
Which one is “true”?
Both and none.
“I” can change my world. “I” can change my Life. “I” can change my thoughts. “I” can go to heaven. “I” am a sinner. “I” am pure. “I” am a son of God, etc.
Most religions, philosophies and scientific “evidence” points out to the fact of an “I” always busy “doing” things, having “control” over destiny…
For those individuals, Chopra’s and other Self-help guru’s teachings will be great. Many “I’s” together create a religion, which in turn holds the “truth.”
On the other hand, the “No-I” is based on awareness without a specific center, observation. That observation in itself is the “doing.”
Because observation “IS,” there is no morality needed, as in for example, “that action is bad. Don’t do it.” “No-I” is not interested in finding the indisputable “truth” when it can appreciate the different consciousness and perceptions.
A person only aware of the “I,” full of “I” could say: “But …just observation will not change anything… “I” want change!” That is the same person who needs a God to believe in, or a moral code to dictate what is “right or wrong.”
That is the same person that will utter: “Ego is bad. I have to conquer it.” Not realizing that this “I,” this ego cannot conquer itself.
What I learned in that gathering was interesting. Most individuals are incapable of self-observation.
Someone asked: “What is the origin of desires? What do you all “THINK”?
Everyone gave his or her “thought.”
For God’s sake, Can you look at “you” for just a bit and talk about “your” experience?
Why is that so hard?
“According to so and so, Ph.D the origin of desires is “this.” Guru XYZ says in his great book, “Tomorrow is another day” that desires are not “bad.” Have you read his book?
Isn’t that a fascinating work? “I” get something new every time “I” read it.” (That is obvious, because “you” are never the same.)
Please….Look at your desire. Look deeper, why is it there?
Could it ever be a desire without an “I”?
“Oh…. I see, is the “I” ….”
Maybe. Maybe not. Let us keep looking. Isn’t that “I” a separation from “what is”?
Are the circumstances, the settings different than “you” since “you” are in those, part of those? Can you exist without circumstances and settings?
“Don’t get that complex with me. Make it simple. Spirituality is very simple. Is desire good or bad?”
🙂 All right. Change your “self.” Transform your self. Self-Transformation… Do it. Change your thoughts. Change your actions. Change your attitude. Change your feelings. What is currently “bad” change into “good.” Connect with God. He can help you. Need extra encouragement? If you fail you will be punished for ever…
Is that simple enough? 🙂
“What book do you recommend I read to improve myself?”
Any book full of “I.” Any book full of God. Any book full of salvation.
Observation. Awareness. That is all.
The minute we could understand that the “I” trying to change himself is a complete illusion, that is the minute when we understand the difference between behavior and consciousness.
When the “I” changes his behavior to appear “saintly,” let me assure you that unless there is a change in consciousness, that “ change” is only in essence a repressed “saint.”
Can the “I” change his consciousness?
Can God change the consciousness of the “I”?
Here a “secret”: The “I” does not exist. Consciousness does. 🙂
“That is not true! …I am this body/soul/mind/whatever/…”
You “are.” That is all. At night when you sleep deeply: Are “you” there?
Yes? Where? Do you need a belief to help you answer the question?
There is no “being” at that time.
Can you “be” if there is no consciousness?
“Your” perception is due to “your” consciousness. “Your” actions will be according to that perception.
When consciousness is allowed to change naturally, so our perceptions will change.
“But… “I” am supposed to stick with my moral standards, with my beliefs and with my ideas and be consistent every time no matter what.”
Dear, that is a human invention.
Consciousness. Some call it “Tao,” others the “Drama.” Consciousness is the script to be performed by the actors, the “instruments” of the stage of Life.
Void of all morality, it is “what is.”
Void of name, it produces all labels.
Void of separation, it arranges for it.
Consciousness is not a religion. It is not a belief. It is what brings all sentient beings together. It cannot be destroyed.
Some call that God, others destiny.
Lost in names, the “I” will create religions and philosophies to separate people.
The “I” lost in itself will experience the suffering of never being fulfilled.
The “I” looking to survive will look into “enlightenment,” or to “become like God.”
Observe. Become aware… and enjoy the game…
Every time we interpret an experience, we create a belief.
Every time we find an intellectual explanation supporting our belief, we have made a dogma.
A dogma cannot stand the movements of Life. A dogma is destined to collapse or to continually re-create itself to survive.
In my Life experience, I had some people telling me about my future. We call those “fortune tellers.”
It is my experience that their prediction became a reality, even when my Life at those past moments did not show any remote likelihood of what I was being told.
Obviously we have different kinds of “fortune tellers.” My experience was with the “good ones.” 🙂
Do we want an explanation about the power of “fortune telling”?
If we live under Yogananda’s experience, we could say something like: “ That person is able to tune into God’s mind.”
If we live under the consciousness of a fundamentalist Christian, we could say: “That is the work of the Devil.”
If we live under the scientific “know it all” consciousness, we could say something like: “It was a subliminal message. You were influenced through that story and you acted it out.”
Do we see that in all of the different consciousness interpreting an experience, there is an explanation?
Which is one right?
That is not the right question. Just observe that there are different states of consciousness formulating an explanation.
Some years after this “fortune telling” experience, my destiny brought me into a religious group who believed in something they call : “The cycle of time.”
Basically, it is the “eternal return” explained by Nietzsche in the West, but understood by many other ancient cultures from different parts of the world with their own spin.
In a nutshell: Every moment is eternal. We could say that every moment will repeat again; however; that is merely intellectual “information.”
In “reality” every moment is completely new.
Paradoxically, because every moment already “has happened,” some “fortune tellers” with that gift, could see it. Life is a movie and some individuals have the gift of “fast forwarding” or “rewind” the movie of Life.
The above merely shows that the “I” is an illusion. We are part of that movie, not something separated.
From that perception, we could perceive the beauty of Totality which others may call “omnipresence” and yet others, “God.”
Let us say that I believed in the religious explanation of the cycle of time given by this religion.
“This is the time to change your destiny. If you don’t do it now, you will not be in Paradise and that unfortunate event will repeat for ever.”
Obviously, my experience of “fortune telling” was supported by the explanation of “eternal return” which at the same time was interpreted in a religious way by some religion due to another experience that I had.
What is the result of so many interpretations?
A dogmatic view of Life.
The fact of recognizing that the “I” is an illusion in a continuously changing world, will clearly allow me to see that the “I” is not “doing anything.” Because everything changes there cannot be a static entity such as the “I.”
Nevertheless, the consciousness of the “I” and the “Me,” (normal consciousness) will compel me to see the “reality” of the “I” doing things.
“I need to go to Paradise.” “I need to achieve God consciousness.” “I need to be saved.” “I need to become a guru.” “I need to be an angel.”
All of that is the illusion of the ego to maintain the “I.”
Are you saying that we are predestined and that there is no free will, then?
I am saying to forget that intellectual nonsense of believing in labels and to feel the moment as “it is,” that means to enjoy it. Isn’t that “good karma” after all?
I am saying, that Life is not pressuring anyone to accomplish anything. Just enjoy the moment.
I am saying that “YOU” as “YOU” are right now, cannot go to Paradise or any other “holy” place until that “YOU” goes away… and at that point, there is no need to go anywhere….
Ananda’s Life experience is already showing in the palms of his hands. Ananda’s Life is related with the position of the planets and stars in the sky. Why?
Because Ananda belongs to everything and he is related with everything. Ananda is not something existing by itself.
The ego arrives and says: “ I can do whatever I want with my life.”
Right. Just like regulating my breathing or stopping my heart beats or changing my consciousness or stopping my thoughts or becoming “more intelligent”… Sure, we can change all of that at “will.” No self-help books needed or Gurus for that…
Are you saying that “I” am a “puppet” of destiny then?
No. Once the “I” goes away, the “right” answer in that consciousness will arrive … all by itself. 🙂
If the “I” remains then the duality of being “predestined” or having “free will” will exist and with that, more beliefs to believe in…
A reader asked about why this thing which we call “bad” exists, if everything in life is beneficial?
Trapped in the perception of duality, our consciousness only knows about “good and bad” when morality appears to pretend to correct that which seems damaged.
When that consciousness resides in the belief of the individual separated from everything else, then a fight will begin with “others” but especially within the “self.” That is known as a fragmented personality.
“This is right, that is wrong. This is good, that is bad. God is good. The devil is bad. Life is good, death is bad”
if the above is not enough, let us add some other labels to keep dividing things: “ Democrats are good, liberals are bad. Christians are this and Hindus are that… etc.
One commercial mentioned: “ …And remember the most important item in this relationship is YOU.”
When many customers appear, there will be many YOU’s who will fight among each other for supremacy.
Any philosophy or religion, which supports the idea of the “I” without considering the “reality” of Inter-beingness, is just a beginner path.
That is how “I think therefore I am” came up. When we perceive that consciousness changes all by itself and thought is not something which happens willingly but something which is experienced as the consciousness of individuality becomes stronger by being more fragmented, then ego is born and then that same ego-conscious mind ironically, wants to solve the state of alienation, separation which brings loneliness, depression and such states of being.
It is that kind of mentality which looks for salvation, for a better life in the afterlife, and for a God that could hear all about his miseries of being a separated entity in the Universe.
As long as that consciousness perceives separation, it cannot bring unity with all to its awareness.
That same mentality will search for “scape goats” for something to blame out of ignorance. In the duality of pleasure and pain, our society has selected pleasure as “bad.”
“Pleasure is the culprit, the cause of not being ‘pure’.” Sex is bad. “Humans have organs to reproduce but that is a temptation from the devil…”
The issue is not sex nor pleasure but the consciousness of the individuals involved.
An individualistic, ego centered consciousness cannot find that the issue is its own separation from the Totality and rather than become one with it by feeling life and being honest with his intentions, that individual rather rationalize things, think about “pros and cons” to trigger duality, separation… that personality wants to dominate, to control everything to support beliefs about its own existence now and the afterlife.
When that ego centered consciousness wants to “become good” then rejection is born towards that which is considered “bad” then that rejected thing will appear strongly…then the fight, the inner battle will be there.
A belief to “stick with the battle” against our true sentiments is proof of our dishonesty in life.
Because there is no battle. Nothing to fight for when we become open to life. It is that “I” who does not allow for change to happen.
Openness to life, acceptance, spontaneity, appreciation, gratefulness and joy are the “keywords” to live by in a different consciousness. No beliefs or religions in this. It is experiential, fulfilling right now… and not in the afterlife.
Good, bad, right , wrong, etc. were just tools for the “little kid” to start his “growing up” process in awareness.
Some may stay there all their lives… however, everything in life is beneficial. 🙂