Saturday, May 21, 2016

Jottings: Slice of life - 12

"Let the force be with you.., All the every best..." Amar was congratulating Mike's son's successful admission into good college. I said "God bless you...". The group around looked at me curiously, and one of them interjected" Bala, do you really mean this wish. I Mean 'God bless you'. I am sure you don't believe in a personal God or any kind of anthropomorphic entity. What is the meaning of this wish.."

It has become a fashion these days to not sound God-centric, if that's the phrase I am looking for. On social media, conversations, you will find a lot of people deliberately avoiding the use of the term "God" and in its place try and say something else, that in their minds sounds and means more neutral. To use the word "God" is deemed primitive and blind, and to use the word "Force" implies enlightenment and an agnostic stance. It is become a sign of modernity to speak in abstract terms like this, than to say something with genuine feeling in your heart. God seems very personal, Sectarian and childish, while "force" projects a objective and scientific frame of mind. Frankly, I am not surprised at the perversion of a meaningful and pregnant word like God. Given the state of organized religions today, use of this term does seems a little dubious. But that does not mean, the word itself has lost its meaning. We have lost its true understanding. That's all.

Stripped of ideological references, the word God, it's etymological roots only indicates a deep state of resignation to state of affairs beyond human comprehension, yet somehow underlying it as well. It's a beautiful word pregnant with humility. Albert Einstein, referred to God, when he couldn't fathom something. And so have all serious Men and Women who can think for themselves. To deliberately avoid the use of this word only underlines our ignorance of what it means. It is very interesting though, that most people who are reluctant to use God in normal conversations are those who claim to have read Chrisropher Hitchens or Richard Dawkins or Sam Harris . Very unfortunate!!!. Because, if they have read these deep thinkers carefully and completely, they will understand that not one of them ever questions the use of the word "God" but only doubt and discard the creator-created paradigm surrounding it. Which is perfectly alright. The problem is most of of our pseudo- intellectuals who parade around in the garb of modernity are only half read; hence misunderstanding is rampant.

Anyway, I have always maintained that words are symbols. Pointers to something beyond it. And many times use of words and phrases are colored by how we wish to be seen by others, than by intrinsic meaning of the word itself. Naom Chomsly, the most celebrated linguist and social theorist once replied to a question on God Like this : "If you want to use the word "God" to refer to "what you are and what you want" -- well, that's a terminological decision, not a substantive one...." 

I guess The need to use the word "Force" and not "God" is more a personal pose than anything else. God points to something more substantive..

God bless....

Yours in mortality,

Bala





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