Ever since the evolution of Man, we have been fascinated by the mundane attractions. Goaded by endless desires, we keep chasing sundry objects to please our senses. And as long we are chasing the senses, we have wool pulled over our eyes. We are thus unable to indulge in more uplifting pursuits that would earn us eternal bliss.
Our higher Self gets obscured when we try to gratify our animal spirits which only gets more whetted and stimulated with every pandering of the senses. Given the humdrum human life, an ordinary person usually starts thinking of God when s/he gets old or is faced with insurmountable difficulties. On the wrong side of life, we become more God-fearing. Our interest in religion and spiritualism often grows after we are past an active life. As we approach death, the scruples and fears about afterlife can make us intensely religious.
Many of us find it infra dig, ridiculous or against our rational, educated background to accept the existence of a Supreme Being which might have created all of us. Many of us, however, want evidence of His existence notwithstanding the same being exists all around us, in the multi-splendoured expressions of His genius. As per ex nihilo nihil fit thesis propounded by Parmenides, ‘there is no break in between a world that did not exist and one that did, since it could not be created ex nihilo in the first place’. This rationalises the subsistence of a spirit in a world that is beyond the world of senses.
Logically and scientifically, all expressions of Creation being diverse arrangements of energy, the inter-relatedness of different aspects of the cosmos has been proved by Quantum Mechanics. The day is not far when afterlife, rebirth, existence of parallel universe, extra-sensory dimensions and time-travel are proven and widely accepted. These have for long been discussed, debated and explored. There are myriad stories, proofs and mysteries relating to cosmic consciousness. Scientifically, the day is not far when time-travel and visits to a parallel universe would be a reality. The enormous explorations and available proof of rebirth and afterlife should encourage us to conduct further investigation.
If souls were to be mortal and rebirth a lie, there would be no need for human beings to become moral and virtuous. If human life were to be a one-off, zero-sum game, we would have all the reasons to sow all our wild oats, without caring for any rules and laws of communal life. There would be complete chaos and anarchy all around. The phenomenon of rebirth and afterlife, by keeping us on the straight and narrow path, actually keeps us motivated for being good and righteous.
The writings of spiritual scholars, including Swami Abhedananda and Ian Stevenson, have dealt with it extensively. But these discoveries have not come to the fore on their own. These have postulated the existence of an inquisitive mind delving deep into the recesses of human consciousness to come out with all the scientific discoveries and inventions made so far. After all, it is Newton who discovered gravity and not vice versa.
If we were unconscious, the material world would be meaningless without our perception. The inanimate and unconscious have no value in the absence of those with consciousness and the power of perception. It is the latter which makes the former relevant and meaningful. Still we keep running after the inanimate and unconscious at the expense of the animate and conscious human relations and values. The truth remains that finite and material things can’t satisfy human beings as our basic nature is infinite and non-material. As such, it is always advisable that we keep stretching our imagination, breaching newer boundaries of our consciousness. But we can’t do the same unless and until we get away from the material desires as infinite desires influences us to be riveted to the higher and loftier dimensions of cosmic realities including our own spiritual growth.
We can’t be coming to this world again and again for no reason. There has to be a higher logic and rationale behind the same which is the elevation and unification of the differentiated souls with the undifferentiated Supreme Soul to explore and savour the profound beauty of the cosmos. The differentiated consciousness of seemingly dissimilar living beings has to slowly uplift itself from its primordial attachment to the sensory attractions to get merged as the undifferentiated consciousness.
Can we believe that what our few senses register embraces the whole of reality? Different living beings have different capacities that others don’t have. A dog can’t see all the colours that a human being can or a human being can’t hear the sounds that some animals can. The reality we see exists within our consciousness, not outside. We experience the properties of our own nervous system. If we don’t like a thing, it is not others’ problem but that of our nervous system.
It is we who are responsible for all our hatred, envy, greed, lust and other negative emotions as they emerge from the various chemical changes in our nervous system, depending on the level of our consciousness. As we are the cause behind their generation, we can very well restrain and pacify the same through regular practice and training. If we can comprehend and appreciate the inter-connectedness of all within the cosmos, many of humanity’s problems could be taken care of. Without mutual reaction and sensory feedback, nothing in the cosmos has any existential value. We don’t exist if others don’t take notice of our existence or recognise our individuality. And howsoever may we try, we can’t lead an isolated, independent, self-contained and solitary life away from other living beings of Creation.
This is because our individual spiritual growth is predicated on our collective schooling in the company of other creatures to learn and teach certain lessons to feel fulfilled and complete. This being the case, we can’t be at war with each other or other aspects of nature. The destruction of any facet of nature or other living beings, including humans, means our own destruction as we are all homeostatically connected. The universe is existent or non-existent depending on our relative sense of understanding and vision.
If people around us are unhappy, we shall be unhappy too because we are all inter-related, giving and deriving sustenance to one another. Sorrow anywhere outside us shall come back to haunt us. Happiness is a basic human nature. The Geeta rightly observes that ‘anyone who enjoys things given by the Gods without offering selfless acts in return is a ‘thief’. It is, therefore, advisable that we keep sharing and caring for each other, including other aspects of Divine Creation. As long as we derive happiness from external objects, we shall remain unhappy because the objects deriving pleasure and derived from both are temporary. So, let’s discover our humanity within to elevate the humanity without to eventually unite with the Cosmic Consciousness.