CAN GOD RUN FASTER THAN LIGHT?

We often see a thing and feign to have not seen it. This is common phenomenon. We often pretend to have seen a thing even when we have not seen it. This is also a common phenomenon. No one has seen God, some pretend to have seen him, and some assume to have seen him. God is zero as well as infinity, depending upon who the mathematician is. God is a poem whose fate we decide. It is we who create god as per our convenience. We procreate god when we need him. God doesn’t exist once our needs are over. We remove him from our want list, as and when he is not wanted. Our wants and needs decide the fate of god. God is someone who has no eye witness. No one has seen his footprints. Some think he is the creator of stars, galaxies, human beings. Some think, he arose out of an illusion, and can create something out of nothing. He arose because he was needed to dampen the abundance of chaos. He was needed to keep the chaos at bay. Some think, god is ‘belief in hope beyond reason’, and therefore he is not science. Many are saying, why a god can’t be less omniscient and omnipotent. Why can’t a god be less godlike, and more human-like? We may doubt the existence of God, but we act as if we believe in something, by whatever name we may call that thing. It is as difficult to prove the existence of god as his nonexistence. It is said that God created man in his own image. It is said that Man created god after his own image. “If a solution, consistent with the ordinary course of nature can be found, we must not invoke an abnormal act of Creative Power,” believed the greatest visionary and scientist Charles Darwin.

Followers of god are ever increasing. God has the potential to offer comfort and peace of mind in the world full of uncertainties and unknowns. We create god in our own ways. Our expectations from god define our god. Einstein’s god did not reward or punish. For him god was a ‘conceivable mystery’. Rabindranath Tagore’s god is unknown and unknowable, beyond one’s reach. His god is always with man, in his happiness and in his pain. His god possesses the entire metaphysical, moral and causal attributes. His god has the knowledge of all the things. His god is integral to man and nature. His god is above the pairs of opposites, of beauty and ugliness, truth and error, good and evil. His god can’t be seen; he can only be realized. His god doesn’t live in far-off heaven. His god is both individual and universal. His god is the Absolute who does nothing, desires nothing, feels nothing but simply exists. His god is the inspirer of his songs. In his songs he could hear God’s silent steps. His god needs man’s love, as much as man needs god’s love. His god is infinite, like a sky. His god is beyond touch, but can be touched. His god can be found in lonely streets, walking alone.

Leon Lederman writes in The God Particle, “In the very beginning, there was a void, a nothingness containing no space, no time, no matter, no light, no sound. Yet the laws of nature were in place, and this curious vacuum held potential. Only god knows what happened at the very beginning?” Richard Dawkins calls god by various names. He thinks “The only watchmaker is the blind forces of physics.” He believes that belief in god is a scientific question. But the question is – who would provide the tools of science to prove or disprove the belief? Dawkins, however, says that his mind is open to the most wonderful range of future possibilities. Francis Collins believed, “God’s existence is outside of science’s ability to really weigh in.” He finds that studying the natural world is an opportunity to observe the majesty, the elegance, the intricacy of god’s creation. For Collins, god is outside of nature, outside of space and time. Collins argues, god is under no obligation to make his intentions obvious. Collins finds absolutely nothing in conflict. He is interested in the whys, and answer to this question can be found in the spiritual realm. He thinks, “That in no way compromises my ability to think rigorously as a scientist.”

Francis Collins thinks God can be worshipped in religious text books as well as in laboratories. Collins has lot of faith in God, but not much in humanity. Extreme polarization among the believers and non-believers extremely hurts Collins. Harmonious middle ground must be found out. To a question, how Collins believes in miracles, he says that his God is supernatural. His god is interested in what is happening in our world and might at times choose to intervene. “I don’t have a problem with the concept that miracles might occasionally occur at moments of great significance. But as a scientist I set my standards for miracles very high. And I don’t think we should try to convince agnostics or atheists about the reality of faith with claims about miracles that they can easily poke holes in.”

Collins doesn’t believe in miraculous healing. For him, prayers are not a way to manipulate God. “I’m trying to figure out what I should be doing rather than telling Almighty God what He should be doing.” He also doesn’t hold God responsible for all the ills of the world. He doesn’t expect God to intervene in worldly affairs. He doesn’t think that god is semi-competent. Collins doesn’t think he is an agnostic. “ I’m agnostic about God’s ways. I’m not agnostic about God Himself.” He is a believer. He has doubts.

Simple logic says that belief in something can sustain only if that thing can prove its worth. God, for example, would not have survived had he not proven his worth. The experience of illusion of God is universal. The illusion is that someone is constantly watching us and is also concerned about our moral lives. When we believe that someone is watching us, we tend to behave differently. ‘Someone is watching us’ is our basic nature. Even devoted atheists possess this nature.

Our belief in God shall continue, as long as he is useful to us. Some even say that atheism is the unnatural way to be. It is quite possible that god is an evolved projection of our understanding of what god should be. Man conceived an omnipotent and omnipresent superman. Mathematicians conceived infinity, an abstract concept that has no limit. God is like Carnot’s engine. God is a goal post that can’t be reached. If a concept like god can’t be reached, it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to reach it. We need a goal post, even an imaginary one, and our endeavour should be to reach that goal post.

There is a view that says that god is simply unnecessary. We can explain all the workings of the universe without a Creator. We have mastered knowledge. Science teaches us many things, but it has not revealed to us why the universe came into existence, nor what preceded its birth, or how the first living organisms emerged from inanimate matter, or how a non-living becomes a living entity, or why is our universe so precisely tailor-made for the emergence of life. Who made the initial blueprint of life, or was it accidental?

God is knowledge. God knows the known. God also knows the unknown. These two roles are separate. They are the two sides of the same deep human impulse to understand the world. Let’s keep them that way. Let us not make an attempt to usurp their roles. God lives in non-material closed space. He has usual quota of friends and enemies. Some are falsely implicated to be his enemies.

Many people thought Galileo to be the enemy of God. Galileo propagated the doctrine of Copernicus that the Sun was at the centre of the Universe, and that the Earth moved around it. This doctrine was not acceptable to many, and, therefore, had been deemed a heresy. He was kept under house arrest. It took some time for us to believe that the stand against Galileo was an error. Some consider Darwin to be the greatest enemy of god. Darwin proposed a doctrine that for life to develop and evolve, God's intervention and guidance was not necessary. "In my most extreme fluctuations, I have never been an atheist in the sense of denying the existence of a God" is what Darwin wrote to a friend.

Did God ever say that he created the universe or us and controls our consciousness? Since I did not hear it, he must have said it in a closed space. There are voices which we hear in solitude, but they grow faint and inaudible as we enter into the world. Taking the cue, I tried to reach god in my closed space. God said, he has created Copernicus, Galileo, Darwin, and those who are pursuing neuroscience. He accepted that it is simpler to create the 'believer' kind. To the 'non-believer' kind, he gave some homework - develop capability to explain god using the tools of reasoning that you have. God got no answer. The debate will continue till the time one knows how carbon compounds become alive. Until that time, god said, he will continue to live with us in the non-material closed space.

Since the beginning of civilization, we have asked questions about our existence and the existence of God. The universe has always been much richer than our ability to understand it. Since the beginning of civilization we are leaning to live with the unknown. In the beginning God gave all our answers. Slowly Man came on the scene to give answers. He gave God some respite. Man’s search for answers built his scientific attitude. Man explained the laws of nature. This satisfied man’s hunger for truth. In the process man understood himself.

Like many others, Stephen Hawking was asked the eternal question - Is there a God? Hawking responded thus: “For centuries, it was believed that disabled people like me were living under a curse that was inflicted by God. Well, I suppose it’s possible that I’ve upset someone up there, but I prefer to think that everything can be explained another way, by the laws of nature. If you believe in science, like I do, you believe that there are certain laws that are always obeyed. If you like, you can say the laws are the work of God, but that is more a definition of God than a proof of his existence.” Hawking said, if we understand the laws of nature, we will not need a god to explain the universe to us. If one understands the laws of nature, he understands the mind of god.

If you have matter, if you have energy, and if you have space, you can create your own universe. The question is from where you will get the material, energy and space to create your universe. One theory says that the entire universe came into existence, around 14 billion years ago, out of nothing. They say, in the beginning it was possible to have the whole universe for free. How that is possible? Scientists say, when there is nothing, there is ‘negative energy’. They say, the stuff that was in the hole has now become the hill. All this negative energy is stored in the space. This negative energy is to balance the positive energy the universe is creating. Hawking believed that science has a more compelling explanation than a divine creator. He writes “Something very wonderful happened to time at the instant of the Big Bang. Time itself began.” Hawking concludes, There is no God. No one created the universe, and no one directs our fate. There is probably no heaven and afterlife either. When we die we return to dust. We pass on our genes to our progeny. We have one life to appreciate the grand design of the universe, and for that Hawking is extremely grateful to someone. Who is that someone?

The history of the universe is an endless chain of changes. This change is brought about by some entity that remains unchanged. Thomas Aquinas defined that entity as God. He said this entity must be eternal. Because it is the root of all causes, nothing else could’ve caused it. Mathematician and physicist Gottfried Leibniz described God as “a necessary being which has its reason for existence in itself.” Einstein compared the human race to a small child in a library full of books written in unfamiliar languages: “The child notes a definite plan in the arrangement of the books, a mysterious order, which it does not comprehend, but only dimly suspects. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of the human mind, even the greatest and most cultured, toward God. We see a universe marvelously arranged, obeying certain laws, but we understand the laws only dimly.”

Explaining the creation of the universe is trickier than we thought it to be. It could be possible, as some suggest. both the creator and the universe are eternal. The universe might’ve had an eternal past before the big bang, stretching infinitely backward in time. Some cosmologists see in this proposition a distinct possibility. Other cosmologists, as is expected, do not believe this argument. As we have known from quantum theory that even empty space has energy, and nothingness is unstable. All kinds of improbable things can happen in empty space, and one of them might have been a sudden drop in energy, which could ha ve triggered the inflationary expansion. This theory suggests that God is not indeed needed for Creation.

Einstein asked an interesting question: If there is a God who created the entire universe and all of its laws of physics, does God follow God’s own laws? Or can God supersede his own laws, such as travelling faster than the speed of light. Can he be in two different places at the same time?’ Monica Grady asks: If God wasn’t able to break the laws of physics, she arguably wouldn’t be as powerful as you’d expect a supreme being to be. But if she could, why haven’t we seen any evidence of the laws of physics ever being broken in the universe? Then she adds, if you believe in God (as I do), then the idea of God being bound by the laws of physics is nonsense, because God can do everything, even travel faster than light. If you don’t believe in God, then the question is equally nonsensical, because there isn’t a God and nothing can travel faster than light.

Our views of God, ultimately depends on our perspective. Terry Pratchett wonderfully described the situation: “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it.”

For argument sake, let us say God is not science. God is a poem. Percy Bysshe Shelley defines poetry: “Poetry is indeed something divine. It is at once the centre and circumference of knowledge; it is that which comprehends all science, and that to which all science must be referred. It is at the same time the root and blossom of all other systems of thought; it is that from which all spring, and that which adorns all; and that which, if blighted, denies the fruit and the seed, and withholds from the barren world the nourishment and the succession of the scions of the tree of life. It is the perfect and consummate surface and bloom of all things; it is as the odor and the color of the rose to the texture of the elements which compose it, as the form and splendor of unfaded beauty to the secrets of anatomy and corruption.”

Can there be a better definition of God? Poetry has deep connection with divinity. The history of scientific thought is closely linked to that of religious thought. Scientists like Newton and Robert Boyle, saw their task “as working with God’s gifts of senses and minds to recover a lost knowledge of nature.” William Wordsworth said, poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquillity: the emotion is contemplated till, by a species of reaction, the tranquillity gradually disappears, and an emotion, kindred to that which was before the subject of contemplation, is gradually produced, and does itself actually exist in the mind. For Kahlil Gibran, “Poetry is a deal of joy and pain and wonder, with a dash of the dictionary.”

God is a poem embedded with strangeness. You may not like its fragmented syntax and grammar. If you want to ignore a good poem, it is your choice. Do you really wish to ignore stunning images and beautiful lyricism. Poetry is something that is not for market place. It is something for one’s own sake. God is not a data. He doesn’t need any measurement. God is for one’s own enjoyment.

कविता

कविता शायद एकतलाश है

स्वयं कोखोजने की कोशिशहै

स्वयं कोमन की भाषा में भाषितकरने का नाम

शायद कविताहै

शब्दों को मन-मर्जी तोड़ने-मोड़ने का अधिकार

शायद कविता देतीहै

कवी अपने कंठमें चुप्पी कीगाँठ बांधे

इधर उधर देखताफिरता है

घूमता है अपनेसाथ लेकर

अपने आकाश को, अपनी धरती को

समय के बदलतेबहाव को माध्यम से

कैद करने कीकोशिश करती है कविता

इस आशा में

शायद उसे मिलजाए

जिसकी उसे तलाशहै

A poem


A poem is a quest to find oneself

It translates the language of the mind into myriad words

It allows the mind to become free

It allows the words to break at their will

A poet's mind wanders here and there

Along with knot of silence, his sky, and his earth

He tries to imprison the changing time

In the hope that he may find what he is looking for


विश्वास

विश्व की महानतम रचना

विश्वास का एक प्रतीकहै

इस विश्वास में है भक्ति

है रचयिता काप्रेम

है आत्मीयता औरआनंद

है समर्पण, भय, और सुरक्षा

यह अद्भुत रचनाजीवित है

रचयिता के विश्वासपर

इस विश्वास का आधार

प्राकृतिक चयन भीहै

और क्रमिक विकासभी

कल्पना की ऊंचीउड़ान से

जन्मा है यहविश्वास

इस विश्वास के साथ जुडी हुईहै

एक निर्माण की परिकल्पना

इस निर्माण की रुपरेखामें निहित है

आदि मानव सेमानव बनने की प्रक्रिया

धन्य है रचयिताकी यह अद्भुतरचना


A symbol of trust


World's greatest creation is

A symbol of trust, devotion and belief

It has creator's love, affinity, bliss

Dedication, fear, and security

Creator's faith keeps alive this amazing creation

Basis of creator's faith is natural selection, and

Gradual evolution

Born out of imaginative flying

It's associated with an ideal construct

Embedded in this construct is the outline of making Man

Blessed are those who made this wonderful creation


God is a poem. It doesn’t matter if he can run faster than light or not. There is no need to know if he can run faster than light. God is a symbol of trust. He can run faster than light only in poetry.