These letters are from a friendly debate between me and my ex-husband, Christopher. I posted letters 2-3 earlier I think. He’s into Eastern philosophy and I’m into Western philosophy. Good to keep an open mind, yes?
#4Hi – OK you asked what do I believe. Well, 1), I believe that consciousness pervades the known universe below the atomic level and this can be seen easily by observing the quantum effect on cell activity, and 2), I believe the ancient Hindu rishis discovered “wise choices unknowingly made” seemed to increase when they increased the frequency of their sun and fire rituals. This led to the belief that a consciousness existed just beyond our awareness (like Freud’s unconscious) and that this consciousness is benevolent and will make wise choices for us (help us) – if given our respectful attention (worship). The first belief (1) became an “apparent truth” in my mind as a result of my first dozen or so LSD trips. This apparent truth was the result of turning inward and then coming to a place where I realized that I had created the entire universe and therefore knew it’s workings. Since this seemed to be both true and obviously false – I sought an explanation. I found the intellectual explanation in both quantum physics and the Vedas. Both explained how God could exist and remain Eternally Supreme (omni-intelligent, omni-powerful, omni-knowing, omni-aware, etc.). This intellectual explanation became a belief only after I met Shree Maa and became aware of Her consciousness entering my consciousness when I was alert and near Her, and also during meditation at home. After a time I began to realize the existence of “wise choices unknowingly made” in my life. They seemed to increase in my life as I increased meditation, japa, and puja. Now I believe strongly in the wisdom and benefits of the Sanatana Dharma as explained in the Vedas. Mostly because of experiences with Shree Maa. Shiva, and the Gayatri mantra. If you are interested in more about what I believe – there are places on the internet that offer more explanation. I would recommend starting with Stuart Hameroff’s website (quantumconsciousness.org). That pretty well sums up “what I believe” – for what it’s worth. (Remember Buffalo Springfield?) – peace, love, and all good. . .Chris (P.S. Regarding form: Brahma (formless God) eternally creates and dissolves an infinite number of forms – from atoms to universes and everything in between. Of course, no one knows why, but I suspect it may be for the same reason that the dog licks his balls – because he can. (Chuckle.)
#5 (TO CHRISTOPHER) WOW that’s such a great answer, thank you so much. I assumed you were a thinker, but I wasn’t sure what you were thinking. And you don’t need to apologize for belated emails. I understand that you must be very busy with such a large family. Other than “quantum effect on cell activity” its pretty clear what you mean (I find that puzzling). I have no problem with a greater consciousness beyond our little consciousness. As far as practicing, I have no formal practice now… I gave it all up, for a specific reason. I came to believe in the world, well, in Pure Form, in particular. As far as Brahma, I also perceive that, I call it the Absolute. But my issue here, is that I call the Absolute Inconceivable, and cannot be described. Thus to call it “space, void, formless, emptiness” is a description and is particularly Hindu. In more advanced forms of Buddhism it is pointed out that the mind must be made empty. The emptiness is not a description of God, the emptiness must be in the mind, in order to meditate.
I have come to believe in Pure Form, like in Plato. I guess that makes me a NeoPlatonist. Unfortunately in Eastern religion Form is considered tempory, illusion, anybody who believes in eternal form must be unsophisticated, still in Maya. Well, never the twain shall meet.
#6 From Christopher- Yes, I am always open to philosophical debate. Hinduism has been described as a collection of about 3000 religions. That is because Hindu inclusiveness always embraces opposing philosophical views as another valid perspective. That makes debate in the western sense very difficult. Like you, Hindus also believe that the Absolute is inconceivable. (The translation of OM from Sanskrit is “infinite beyond conception.”) Still, Hindus ascribe to God the same qualities as do Christians and Muslims: all-knowing, all-powerful, all-aware, present in all things, etc., etc.. So, some questions: 1) Can a formless entity have those qualities? (Is air, which has qualities, formless?), 2) Must Eternal Form be Pure? If Pure, what prevents mixing at the boundaries of the form?, 3) Is a form eternal if it dissolves and recreates itself as another form, or is the old form “dead’ and the new form “born”?, 4) As I understand Plato, Eternal Form is like an intangible template which produces tangible form. But if the template is intangible, isn’t it formless? (Tangible stuff has boundaries.). Just some thoughts. In Hinduism. Maya is the realm of form. It is true that Hindus consider form to be temporary. At the same time, Hindus consider Maya to be the eternal & endless creative process of the formless Divine – hence, form itself is eternal even though individual forms come and go. (Specifically, maya is caused by the “great measurement of consciousness” – which is Shakti.) Well, anyways, now I must go. The dogs are insisting on their morning walk. Peace. ~ love, Chris