The non believer in me…

This actually stems from one sms and one fb post and some discussions I was lately having with Jay during our Udaipur trip. This might be a long post so if you want an alert, treat this as one. A sort of a Khichdi post…

First I will share the sms I received today morning at 6.45 – “Jai Jinendra – Bakri eid nimitey lakho abol jivo ni katal thashe. Abol jivo ni aatma ne shanti ane moksh maley mate navkar mantra no jaap karva vinanti.” – Translated – Jai Jinendra – Since its Bakri eid lakhs of lives who cannot speak will be killed. For the peach and attainment of Heaven (moksha) of these aminals who cannot speak you are requested to recite Navkar Mantra.”

Admittedly my reply sms to my Jain friend was, “Jain Jinendra, people who drink milk from other animal’s mother and call themselves vegetarians should not question other people’s belief, thousands die everyday so keep reciting your prayers everyday for them. Don’t join the bandwagon think or else don’t send me such messages.”Β  I felt it was completely insensitive to bombard another set of belief’s. I also admit my reply too was perhaps naive and an angry one.

Second is this update by Sagarika on Facebook. It is a public post and everyone will be able to see the post.

How does a girl not believing in Ram and why women are being raped are connected I will never be able to comprehend. I mean give me a break, the guy is probably the sickest mind going around or a religious fanatic perhaps !? I leave that for you to judge.

Anyways, about my thoughts about religion and God’s well…

Lets start the story from a recent trip when I was travelling with my friend Jay, with us escorting about 60 school children on a trip to Kumbhal Garh and Udaipur. Kumbhalgarh is an interesting place, a fort built by Rana Kumbha and has so many tale’s it fascinates me. Let me share a small story about the history of Kumbhalgarh that we heard from a guide –

When Rana Kumbha started building his fort he encountered a strange problem, all walls that they would build in the day would fall by night and not stand. Eventually he consulted a saint who said that a human sacrifice was needed for the fort to be constructed, when no one volunteered one traveller priest volunteered and said that he would start walking in the morning on the mountain terrain and that where he stopped first the king should make the gate of the fort, the place where he second stopped the king must behead him and build a temple there and then his body would walk without its head and the place where the headless body would collapse he should build his palace. Now the palace and the temple are so far even a man with his head firmly on his shoulders cannot walk the distance without huffing and puffing !!!

the falling walls of Kumbhalgarh needed a human sacrifice or they would not stand… !!! Interesting story… πŸ™‚ and a fact that this is the second longest wall in the world after the great wall of China.

The kids of 10th and 12th class with us couldn’t really digest the story and there was massive disbelief as well as amused intrigue at the story. Everyone rubbished it as only a flowery story or just mere exaggeration. Now this story happened in the 14th century. We are easily able to rubbish the story as exaggeration are we not !?

Now that evening I and Jay, who is as non-religion as me were discussing various religions and sects. Starting from Rana Kumbha’s stories it was about the disbelief among the students and then eventually to how I thought religions have evolved.

Recently I had been reading a lot about operation blue star and from reading one thing to another I went about finding more and more about Sikhism and I read about how it evolved and read that Guru Nanak who is attributed as the man who founded Sikhism was as Wiki puts, ”Β It is believed that Guru Nanak is the second most travelled person in the world; most of his journeys were made on foot with his companion Bhai Mardana. He travelled in all four directions – North, East, West and South. The founder Sikh Guru is believed to have travelled more than 28,000Β km in five major tours of the world during the period from 1500 to 1524. The record for the most travelled person is held by Ibn Battuta of Morocco.”

Now, we started understanding how Guru Nanak travelled so much and probably got to see so many cultures, different people, different customs etc. probably making him all the better at understanding human mentality and its fallacies.

Now one very important thing that Guru Nanak says, god is neither Hindu nor Musalman, that there is only one God.

I do have a slight question for Guru Nanak too though, even Islam says there is only one God and that all others are prophets, even Adam, Noah, Jesus or Mohammed were all prophets (messengers of God) but there is only one God. So why did he establish another religion ?!

No, I am no historian, I read bits and pieces and try to tailor my own understandings. Did Guru Nanak establish a religion at all ?! Was he not the ultimate traveller who understood or a person who thought he understood things better than most and was just trying to spread his gospel on his many trips ?? Was he not perceived as a very wise man and a person who understood things better than most ?? Eventually granting him God like status ?!

I for one understand this, Guru Nanak is not so distant in history again 15th century and perhaps at his time literacy had spread more, there are more records of that age and era and hence we understand that he was a Guru, certainly a human and not a God and that he founded some principles, probably his disciples after him spread it as Sikhism establishing themselves as the close one’s to the Guru and the one’s who understood his thoughts the best and went about spreading the religion.

Take for example Ramayana, now, it is universally accepted it was a poetic epic written by Valmiki. There are several other versions too but that we leave for some other day.

Now my argument is, how is Rama a deity or a God. Is he not just a piece of fiction !? Don’t crucify me for this, just listen…

I have this theory that probably in the Vedic times when Ramayana was written it was a great story of a great dynasty about defeating a demon king in the southern India. I understand also that at that point of time not many would have understood written literature and hence possibly the story of Ramayana had to be read by some few people who could read. Then probably some of these few men, probably financed by a king, set about travelling and spreading the literature around and possibly conducted gathering’s and recited the poetry and then explaining to the layman what the author meant. There was no TV then so maybe the evening entertainment was reciting these stories. Ramayana I simply love as a story, it has everything does it not ? Now what is a story that does not have exaggeration. Would it be so interesting if they would just say that Rama and Ravana fought for 14 days or a month and Rama won !? But the author or maybe his translator(s) made it such a wonderful story to listen to…. A boring story would not attract crowds, but an interesting one surely would. Humans have always been fascinated by fantasy…

A prince exiled, his wife kidnapped by a demon in a flying chariot, a vulture tries to fight and protect, the elusive search by the exiled prince, aided by monkey’s, a flying monkey burns the whole golden city of Lanka, an army of monkey’s and bear’s gathered, a bridge of floating stones to Sri Lanka and a fight full of stories, one as impossible as bringing Sanjeevani Booti from Himalayas to Lanka in the middle of a battle at a time when no ship’s existed leave alone jet’s !! Well they had a Hanuman then…

I mean people can’t really believe all this happened did it !? Because it is so so back dated old and so little literacy and records of that age are with us we can believe that Rama was a god and Guru Nanak was a mere traveller who spread his gospel that God is one !?

Guru Nanak is perceived largely as a Guru, a human not God whilst Ram is a deity. Nanak started a religion, whilst Ram was born in an existing religion… strange na !?

Why is God anything else but a mere belief !?

Have not religions just been propagated mainly by disciples of great travelling men. Leave aside Guru Nanak and take a look at Mahavir Swami or Buddha both of them travelled about crazily. Amazingly if you notice they too happened during an era of which we have more literary records and hence they are shown as saints with lil superpowers, they didn’t have Sudarshan Chakra’s or they couldn’t fire Brahmastra’s. Also they were aided by strong Kings who probably financed the spread of the religion by sending their disciples far and wide with messages. I firmly believe that probably these all (Mahavir, Buddha, Guru Nanak) were people who probably understood the nuances of human life and psychology a lot better and had remedies when people had problems. They preached their experience and not some religion. They were men who were probably learned and well travelled. However, I feel the disciples of these great men were actually even wiser, read shreweder, then these great travellers because I think they used the knowledge of the discoverer’s to great personal benefit. Religions massively seem to be spread by the disciples who made the rules and regulations as per personal benefits.

Sometimes I really cannot understand why don’t people question things, why do we follow without asking ? Also rules framed somewhere in the 14th century cannot always be relevant in the 20th century can they be !? A lot of customs have science associated to them and I can understand the logic. When I understand the logic behind a particular ritual or ceremony I can follow it so much more with my free will. Please respect my right to not believe as much as you respect your right to believe.

For me actually there is no God, no one has seen him and he doesn’t exist, but, in the minds of people. Have your own belief, and let me have mine.


46 thoughts on “The non believer in me…

  1. deviantwave says:

    Thank you for this. I have read 4 scriptures after I attended a Kar Seva meeting during my college days. I did not go there to serve Ram, but mainly to understand what was being preached. it shocked me to know that women were not to touch the chariot of Ram and pollute it with their touch. I was shocked and went back to read where is the maryada shown to women by Ram, if he believed to be polluted by the touch of a female. SOmewhere didn’t that mean that the touch of women had the power to arouse in him feelings that he shouldn’t have. Then who is the weaker sex here?
    Ram ordered Shoorpanaka to be disfigured, order Mandodari to be tricked and tortured, did not stand up for his wife because he held his throne much closer and yet he is not to be addressed as a weak character but the mightiest of them all? Hah! Sure, at this rate I should be given Bharat Ratna!

  2. Aarti says:

    Amazing post, you’ve shared so much of what I’ve been pondering over.. I refuse to follow anything blindly but thathas earnerebels he label of a rebel and brought no answers! I question our customs only to be told ” our parents and other elders have been following so just shut it and folow’ which I refuse to accept as an answer..

    People sometimes get scared when I ask about god and other related aspects.. They fear that if they were to say something different God might get offended and not bless them.. Each one to their own I know but I refuse to follow the herd… Not until I find answers to my satisfaction!!

    • hitchy says:

      I guess at times people fear to not dissect or trace back religions and gods and read more about them… for if they do they will become like us… believers in mortality ! πŸ˜›

  3. Ashwathy says:

    Why is God anything else but a mere belief !?
    I personally believe that there is a higher power that controls everything… some things are beyond the knowledge of the human mind (atleast for now). People choose to call this power by various names. But to kill for and die for in the name of religion is the most ridiculous thing I can ever imagine.

    Have your own belief, and let me have mine.
    Live and let live. Amen!

  4. phoenixritu says:

    I think of these religious figures as history of those times and norms. These guys were human definitely and fallible. The rest is pure fiction – the garuda and kishkinda are fiction definitely, so is Jataka (or may be extra terrestrials came and fought along with Rama). History is written by the victorious, and propaganda/exaggeration is the norm.

    I am spiritual as opposed to religious, rituals and Rama leave me cold. Besides I dont need a pandit to intervene in how I talk to my God, so customs are just quaint traditions to be enjoyed for the fun of it all.

    • hitchy says:

      I agree with your view that customs are just quaint traditions to be enjoyed for the fun of it all.. πŸ™‚ super way of looking at them… πŸ™‚

      Who knows about 2000 years from now.. Mark Zuckerberg would be known as a deity ! πŸ˜› πŸ˜› πŸ˜›

  5. Prakash Shah says:

    I agree that there is no God or one partiuclar person is GOD say like a RAMA or Mahavir.

    But would like to confess one thing. When ever i am in trouble i always speak to my innerself or as people call it GOD first ” Why me or sorry for what i have done, give me strength to face this tough time etc. etc..”

    Good to see that you have time to write…. I always find your posts intresting. Keep it coming.

    • hitchy says:

      When you speak to that God are you not actually having a conversation with your own conscience !? I think that is what is happening…just that we are so conditioned in our upbringing that we call it God…

      Somewhere even Atheist’s cannot stop using the word God as it is so ingrained in our brains right from our growing up days !

  6. Jahal says:

    Conscientious post πŸ™‚
    When you have time go through this page
    I do agree that now a days religion is mixed with polictics with money and many more things but religion and the traditions followed behind them are sometimes very much paramount too; they have their own sweet memories to cherish.
    You too believe that God is within you and so you donot need to follow any sculptures. But I believe above everything, above everyone there is one soul who is greasing machine named MAN. By diversifying religion into Hindu, Muslims, sikh etc etc MAN has created FISSURES between themselves; Yes FISSURE best analogue

    • hitchy says:

      Sorry but I actually didnt get you… I never wanted to talk about religion and politics… that is a completely different matter altogether… I dont have a problem with following traditions either… my whole argument was why do people simply follow without understanding or demanding logics ?! How many actually are ready to use their brains and actually think..? I think a lot of minds are just shut and don’t or can’t even think about the question of is there really a god !? A lot of conditioning has probably led them to believing that is a taboo question ?

      I don’t believe there is God within me.. but I believe in a conscience… I justify my acts to my conscience… I talk to it, argue, plead and all sorts of things… that is what spiritualism is all about is it not ?

      Whilst I have no problem with you believing that there is one soul who is greasing man…. I certainly do not agree and I completely am a person who believe’s it is evolution and nothing else… Nature not God created everything ! πŸ˜› anyways…

  7. abs says:

    I think all credit to this debate about God and its beliefs should go to actor Paresh Rawal for boldly enacting this theme…he has given people reason to discuss this topic openly. People are now opening to the fact that these rituals and beliefs can be challenged. yes many like you and others may have had their doubts but nobody was ready to discuss this issue. We all blindly believe in our respective religion as was flushed down by our ancestors. Very frankly today even the priests do not have the answers to some of the questions put up on our beliefs and religion..i personally believe in karma…good thoughts, good words, good deeds… this is what our religion teaches us…Everybody (99%) believes in God OR the Divine Force which guides the universe. Oh God! hey Bhagwan! O Khuda!
    each to their own…as rightly said “Live and let live”.

    • hitchy says:

      I have not watched OMG fully yet… and this post doesn’t stem from that movie…

      I think this argument has always been there only, kids have always asked their parents why and parents have taught them to not question… some kids either did not listen or some parents perhaps could not stop their kids from their inability to digest things without sound reasons logics… !

      If you see even the Geeta talks about Karma… jo karega wohi milega…. that is simple… it doesnt talk about a God giving you something just coz you will sit and pray… all these are stories.. and about the exclaims of Oh God… well that is just our social conditioning over years… its a phrase and nothing else…

  8. Writerzblock says:

    I do believe there is a God, Hitchy. But yes, I definitely do not impose my thoughts on anyone, and I certainly do not like people preaching to me. Like you said, each to his own!! Also, I know LOTS of people who are atheists but who have a heart of gold πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ so one cannot say ‘good’ people need to ‘believe’ in God. The two are not connected.

    • hitchy says:

      πŸ™‚ that is a fair comment really… I would just request you to answer your son with all your heart and open mindness when he asks you questions about God’s and religion… that woudl just about do it πŸ™‚

  9. Sraboney says:

    I’m an agnostic because I dislike the way religious dogma shuts down the human mind and manipulates believers. The core principles in all religions were formed by men, so why should we adhere to them blindly? Every human being has a brain and should use it to think and form opinions for themselves.

    I believe travel and reading are essential for the expansion of the human mind. Jesus, Guru Nanak, The Buddha were no doubt great men but they were not Gods or prophets. They were philosophers.

    • hitchy says:

      Guess if questioning faith would pay some money I am pretty sure we humans would be spending a lot of gray cells behind it would we not πŸ˜› πŸ˜›

      about Jesus, Nanak, Buddha – I couldn’t agree more with you ! πŸ™‚ Great men ! not Gods… πŸ™‚

      • Sraboney says:

        Ok, God. When there is empirical proof that a supernatural being exists, I’ll believe in God. Till then I’ll believe in my own set of beliefs. Ramayana is just a story, that’s all.

  10. Sraboney says:

    To continue (I can go on and on about this topic), religion becomes an ideology when man-made dogma is considered to be the infallible truth. As I see it, religion evolved to encourage cooperation between people but unfortunately today all it does is create rifts.

    • hitchy says:

      whilst Gods are in question in this post…

      religions are completely a subject for a whole post…

      most of them in my personal opinion happened out of insecurities… the whole idea was to have people on our side as opposed to the other side…and so on… eventually the basic instinct of humans to survive over and above all other species or races will remain and blood will flow… no matter what… Yes religions have only created rifts and nothing else…

  11. Taaza Mist says:

    Regarding your response to the sms, I have one more question for the sender. Would the person consider giving up use of leather and silk? Because, you see thousands of cattle and billions of worms are slaughtered every single day so that he/she can look beautiful.

    Agree with all you have said. When you argue with people about Ramayana being a story, they question how come the temple and Rame sethu and Lanka exist. Hello! you can build a story on places and buildings that exist. Or you can build a building to support your story, especially if it is funded by kings, etc.

  12. Amit says:

    As a wise man said – I do not have a problem with God. It is his fans I cannot stand. πŸ™‚
    I believe in the presence of a power. Someone made us. It might be just chemical reactions, but then I will like to believe that the true God is nature. The rest are just stories to herd humans.

  13. wanderlustathome says:

    Well said, Dhiren!
    I don’t have anything against religion per se, as long as people do not force their ideas and beliefs onto others. To each his / her own. For each person who can think unbiased, there are thousands who need some kind of guidance in their life and someone to turn to. For them, that may be the only hope in their life.
    The trouble starts when they start to think theirs is the only true God. I come from a staunch catholic family and have spent all my school and college years in instituitions run by nuns. I could never agree to their propoganda that only Christians will go to heaven. Almost got beaten up once for asking whether Gandhiji is in hell now πŸ˜€

    • hitchy says:

      ha ha ha ! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

      no but seriously the problem with so many people are they will not reply to our questions and get angry perhaps at the fact that why did they never think of this and followed blindly… ! seriously !

  14. R's Mom says:

    Well, isnt God what we want him/her to be? Its just a faith, a belief that there is a supreme being up there..thats all..

    I dont think the rituals/traditions etc etc which we follow make sense most times..of course, again, I am a firm firm believer of ‘to each his/her own’ just dont expect me to follow anyone blindly na…..let me follow what I believe in eh?

    • hitchy says:

      absolutely a belief !!! I respect people wanting to have their belief and its fair… whilst some rituals I can try and draw some science logic from.. some I follow just for the fun part… its ok… I mean… but when I have a problem with some ritual I can’t be a goat and follow the herd… and I expect people to understand my view as well !

  15. abs says:

    i agree with R’s Mom. one should not thrust their beliefs on others. What about the scriptures and holy books? was it written by God? just like a story is told from one person to another, words and images are added or subtracted and it is passed on from generation to generation …thats how the rituals and traditions are followed. i agree that religions have created a lot of rifts and differences.Sometimes we see miracles happening…thats where the Supreme Force comes into act…be it our own concience to fight back….kehte hai bhagwan hum sab mein baste hain..then y do people fight and kll? are they not killing the Bhagwan? yes…its so very confusing if you go to analyse all this.Nobody has the anwers to all these queries, so once again we leave each one to use their brains and follow what they believe in.

  16. German says:

    Thanks for the good writeup. It if truth be told was a leisure account it.
    Look advanced to far introduced agreeable from you!
    However, how can we communicate?

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