Friday, April 10, 2020

God is a mathematical equation

We are going through testing times. Corona Virus has once again sparked an age-old debate – Does god exist at all? If yes, why did (S)he let this disaster usher upon us. More specifically, why are the believers (Human Beings) affected more than the non-believers (animals). 

God, as we know the entity, is just the tip of the iceberg in the public discourse. We know God as forms like Brahma, Vishnu, Mahadev or formless as Allah or Jesus’s father. But we hardly take a deep dive to understand the idea of God as it has been understood by the ones whom we follow to achieve our unity with God. 

Indian philosophy has two primary divisions or branches – Aastika & Naastika. Being a Naastik does not necessarily mean a non-believer of God as per Indian tradition. Naastika philosophy has three further branches – Buddhism, Jainism & Charvakism. The first two are actually organized religious systems where God has a space. The third however are very much similar to what 20th century occultist Anton Lavey preached about in his book “The Satanic Bible” – basically materialism – all that is here is what matters, body is much more important than mind & there is no afterlife.

Now what is Aastika then? Indian universities define Aastika philosophy in their curriculum as those who believe in the authority of Vedas. They are organized into six branches - Nyāyá, Vaiśeṣika, Sāṃkhya, Yoga, Mīmāṃsā, and Vedānta. Now Vedas are huge texts in content and rhetoric. For my case, I will take one branch – Vedanta – and try and understand God from the works of Swami Vivekananda which are referred to as Advaita Vedanta, or non-duality, or singularity. 

God is a function of consciousness. 

To understand God, one needs to understand the idea of consciousness. We have three states of consciousness of the mind – sub-conscious mind, conscious mind & super-conscious mind. Sub-conscious state is when our mind thinks something independent of us giving it a stimulus.

For example, when we dream, our mind thinks and imagines and picturizes our thoughts which we see. Dreams are the best example to explain sub conscious mind.

Theologians may bring in the idea of Atman to explain consciousness. It is the idea that whatever we think is actually done by the Atman – the soul. I however dismiss this as a fact, since we know that thoughts are basically electrical signals on our nervous network.

Conscious mind is our normal state, all the thoughts that occurs to us during the day when we are aware and awake. The conscious mind records a lot of useless information like a distant car horn during a conversation. This information may appear in our dreams later that night when the sub conscious mind resets our brain for the next day.

Dreams – what kind of sorcery are they?

Dreams need to be discussed a bit since they often trouble us into rituals of religion. A matter of fact is that we dream daily, almost three times a night, but we hardly remember all dreams. Our sleep happens in cycles of 1.5 Hrs – 2 Hrs. During that period, the last part – say a period of 5 – 10 mins is when we dream. What do we dream? Why do we dream?

Our sense organs catch a lot of information during our conscious activity period. Like a flying Airplane, two people fighting on the road, a packet of cookies on the grocery shop which we didn’t buy, so on and so forth. Our conscious mind also thinks constantly along with the acquired information and a spiral of thoughts accumulate. As we move on with our work, those thoughts often remain unprocessed. During our sleep, the mind which does not turn off, tries to process all that information and make sense out of it. Often it cannot make a sense and hence we see nonsense and baseless movies in our dreams. They are a reflection of our conscious mind. We need not worry much even if we saw some one murdering us, maybe it was because we saw a thriller movie during the day.

Super-Consciousness – God himself.

To understand super-consciousness, one needs to understand consciousness as a measurable unit. Let me break it down. Suppose an ant is crawling on your hand, its consciousness (or the information that it can gather) remains only bound to that hand or at max your body. The ant will not know what is happening in another human being’s body sitting just beside you. Its consciousness level is very low. Now let us take a larger animal, say a cat. The cat knows what is happening in your house, it is aware of that. But it may not be aware what is happening in the next house. Now lets take the example of human, we know whatever is happening in and around the world and a bit beyond that, thanks to technology. Thus, consciousness is a graded and measurable thing if we consider it this way. And by this logic, there could be and has to be some being who are more conscious than human beings are.

Now whatever I have explained above, the level of consciousness expands in space – from a human’s body, to a house, to the world. All of this happens in the present time i.e. time remains a constant. If we plot the graph, with space on the x-axis and time on the y-axis – it will look like a straight line expanding in the positive direction of x-axis.

Now, let us use time (or y-axis) a variable too. So, if a person or being becomes aware of everything from the start of space to the end of space i.e. the whole universe. And if he does so from the start of time to the end of time – (s)he becomes super-conscious being or as theology explains it, unites with the God.

Many people have claimed to have attained this state at will through the practice of meditation but I do not subscribe to the idea that it can be achieved. And I believe the Vedic scholars believed the same as well and they knew that God is a theoretical model which can only be explained but cannot be attained. Thus, they further came up with a corollary to explain the entity of Godness. 

As per Advaita Vedanta, God is a being of Infinite Existence, Infinite Knowledge & Infinite Bliss. That is what the idea of Vishwaroopam is as explained in the Bhagavata Geeta. Since God is Space-Time extending to infinity, thus he is the summation of everything that constitutes the universe at all points of time, or, Sigma of Space-Time.

Thus, God is integration of everything; or, everything in the universe is the d(y)/dx of God. 

Thus, God is omnipresent & omnipotent. But only to the believer – the mathematician, I suppose!