Continued from the previous post…….
Taking responsibility for our suffering
The Vedic understanding of evil, which many like Kushner are unaware of, places the responsibility of suffering on the individual soul. God is not the direct cause of our suffering, it’s we who have misplaced our free will, and decided to come to this material world to enjoy and suffer independently of God.
On hearing this principle, many accuse God of giving us the free will in the first place, and thus they hold him responsible for all our suffering. It’s like accusing the parents for giving good facilities to the child which the boy misuses. If the child was not given good food, a nice school to go, and a decent pocket money, the parents would be accused of abuse, but if they do give these conveniences and the child choses to waste them, are the parents to be blamed for giving the benefits!
Similarly it’s clearly a catch-22 situation for God; damned if you do and damned if you don’t. The fact that God has given us a free will is a cause for celebration; we can choose to end the cycle of suffering in this material world and go back to the kingdom of God. Yet we chose to suffer life after life in this miserable material world, and blame God for giving us the choice. If he hadn’t given us the choice, we would have blamed God for being so authoritarian and cruel.
The good news for Harold Kushner is that the Lord is kind and powerful, both. Although we have chosen to be away from Him, He doesn’t forget us. He comes as an incarnation, and gives us scriptures like Bhagavad Gita and Srimad Bhagavatam and also sends His representative, prophets and messiahs to help us. Thus He is Supremely merciful, and also completely powerful to take us out of this material existence.
The Supreme Lord confirms this in the Bhagavad Gita.
“Whenever and wherever there is a decline in religious practice, O descendant of Bharata, and a predominant rise of irreligion—at that time I descend Myself.” (Bhagavad Gita 4.7)
Atheism is the belief or theory that God does not exist.
With the progress of science, the scientists became more concerned with the laws of the universe than the creator of the universe and its laws. Although Deism acknowledged God as the creator, by propounding that the laws of nature are independent of God’s control, His connection with this universe was removed. Then with Darwin’s theory of evolution, God’s connection from life in this universe was also removed. Darwin emphasized that there was a ‘natural selection’ and ‘survival of the fittest’ that caused the evolution of species, and it wasn’t God after all who created life and species in this planet.
And today the scenario is if you mention ‘God’ in scientific circles, you’d be accused of being un-scientific. While some scientists do acknowledge that there is an intelligent designer, and a divinity in this creation, they fail to see how this ‘divinity’ or ‘intelligence’ interacts with His creation; since the material methods can’t help one see God, they deny His existence in our lives. Thus for all practical purposes, even if some scientists talk of superior intelligence, they defy God’s laws and cut themselves off from His divinity. Since they lack a personal, loving relationship with God, they find no reciprocation from God or any tangible experience of God. Hence they turn to be atheists; they declare, “God doesn’t exist for me”
With the rising influence of the ‘four bearded murders’ of God in the late 19th and early 20th century, it was believed that in a few decades, religion would cease to exist.