"I am convinced about the veracity of my opinions, but I do consider it likely that they may turn out to be incorrect. Likewise, I am convinced about the incorrectness of the views different from mine, but I do concede the possibility that they may turn out to be correct.” — Imam Shafa’i
(This attire has explicit language contents about God Al-Mighty and if found objectionable, then you should not read it with closed eyes but an open mind!)
A man with a glower and a long thick beard was leaving a convenience store when he suddenly felt dizzy and shortness of breath. He hurriedly reached for the wall and slid down against it, then blacked out… Sometime later he woke up and could see nothing, but he felt a distinctly eerie presence!
Bearded Man: "Where am I?"
He heard, or felt, a voice coming from nowhere in particular as he tried to make out WTF?
Eerie Being: "You are lying on a cot in the emergency ward of the Pauper's Pallet, as the hospital for indigents in your area as popularly known!"
Bearded Man: "Who are Yoooooou?"
Eerie Being: "I am called many things: the universe, the cosmos, nature, eternity..."
Bearded Man: "Then…. You must be God?"
Eerie Being: "You can call me that, if you like. Many do."
Bearded Man: [Awed, he pondered about the significance of what he had just heard. Then he looked around.] "I see nothing. Everything is so dark over here."
Eerie Being: "That is because you are unconscious."
Bearded Man: "Yes, I remember falling down in front of the convenience store?"
Eerie Being: "You collapsed as you were leaving. The clerk saw you fall and called a doctor."
Bearded Man: "There still are kind people in this world, God. [suggesting…]"
Eerie Being: "He had to do something. You were blocking his door."
Bearded Man: "What happened to me God?"
Eerie Being: "You had what is called a transitory ischemic attack. Nothing much to worry about! You will be fine when you wake up."
Bearded Man: "So You did not punish me, OMG?"
Eerie Being: "Of course not! Why would I punish anyone?"
Bearded Man: "For disobeying Your commandments and I at times would forget to hear You out?"
Eerie Being: "I make no rules. People do, and then expect the world to conform to them. Why, they even try to forbid themselves from thinking about what they see as transgressions."
Bearded Man: "What's wrong with forbidding people to have bad or dangerous thoughts?"
Eerie Being: "If you ask me that, there is no point explaining. You would not understand; or rather, you would not allow yourself to understand."
(This was not the answer he had expected. Could it be that he was unworthy? His mind bristled.)
Bearded Man: "As Your worshipper, it is my duty to spread your compassionate faith across the world. [still suggesting.]"
Eerie Being: "I did not ask you to represent me?"
Bearded Man: "Are You saying You don't need any helpers?"
Eerie Being: "No! And I don't need you, either!"
Bearded Man: "But You made me, God! You are the Heavenly Creator of all THINGS!"
Eerie Being: "Don't let that go to your head, boy. I make lots of useless things, all the time."
(There was a brief eternity of shocked silence)
Bearded Man: "How can anything You make be useless, God?"
Eerie Being: "Most of the things I make are more or less useless. Some turn out to be quite useful while a few others are so useless that they get in the way."
Bearded Man: "You mean like Good and evil?"
Eerie Being: "No, a normal distribution. Cannot get it right all the time!"
Bearded Man: "But God! You can make things any way You like. Why do You allow evil to exist?"
Eerie Being: "Good and evil are relative terms at best. Trying to make them absolutes is pointless and futile. Look at it from my perspective. Perhaps I could really control everything; but that would require a great effort." [The entity briefly paused as if yawning] "Besides, there is no point in controlling everything. A clockwork universe where everything is predictable would be boring. Even you can see that much. It's far more interesting to let things take their own course…"
Bearded Man: "But, You run everything in the universe, don't You?"
Eerie Being: "No, at least not deliberately. You might say that I am like a writer who lets ideas come to him and plots and characters develop spontaneously."
Bearded Man: "The universe as Your entertainment - isn't that rather selfish of You God?"
Eerie Being: [The answer came in a tone that sounded like a shrug] "Perhaps; but then, your existence will have an end. I, on the other hand, will exist with the universe--be the universe--for an eternity. I would rather it entertain me than please you with your short sight and closed mind."
Bearded Man: "You call my devout faith narrow-minded?"
Eerie Being: "Your mind is narrow, yes, but you have also closed it to anything but what agrees with the teachings of your faith. You do not question its basic tenets, refuse to see its inconsistencies, live by its double standards, and hate all who will not close their minds in the way you have closed yours."
Bearded Man: "If people will not see the light, they must be made to see it."
Eerie Being: "The fact that there is no religion without fear shows the weakness of its arguments. Tell me, have you ever considered the possibility that it is you who could be wrong, not the others?"
Bearded Man: "Well, That is blasphemy God!"
Eerie Being: [There was a flicker of a thought from the entity that felt almost like a chuckle] "Do you realize the irony of what you have just said? First you call me God, then you go on to imply that I blaspheme, this against some absurd rules which people, not I, have made."
Bearded Man: [He could not deny the logic of the argument. Then he had a daring idea. Before he could stop himself, he asked] "Have You ever wondered if there is something greater than Yourself?"
Eerie Being: “That idea would occur to any thinking being sooner or later. Entertaining such a notion and testing it is normal. Clinging to it and turning it into an institution, however, is not rational. I do not worry about things for which there is no evidence."
Bearded Man: "You sound like a scientist to me!"
Eerie Being: "Trial and error is the only way to arrive at the truth."
Bearded Man: "What evidence have You then, that there is nothing greater than Yourself?"
Eerie Being: "None, just as I have no evidence for the contrary. Either way, what can be claimed without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence?" [The entity paused briefly, and then went on to add] "If you consistently fail to find evidence for something, there comes a point where you should say: 'Let's just say it doesn't exist and take it from there.' You cannot believe in something and then go on to take your belief as evidence that the thing you believe in exists. This is circular thinking, and as such unproductive. Scientists, on the other hand, ask questions, make theories and test them, and try to keep an open mind. Why, sometimes they even give me ideas?"
Bearded Man: "But don't You know everything already, God?"
Eerie Being: "You confuse being with knowing. I am the universe, so I should know everything in it? You don't know everything about yourself either; like the little dark mole on your left buttock which will soon turn malignant if you don't have it removed. Anyway, knowing something doesn't mean that you'll think of it. Surely that must have happened to you before."
Bearded Man: "But You are God. You can think of everything all at once?"
Eerie Being: "That is a common misconception. Thinking requires focus, and focus is narrow. By focusing you shut out everything else."
Bearded Man: [with a growing suspicion had been gnawing at him for most of the conversation] “You think that religion is not good, then?"
Eerie Being: "Religion is an extension of the social instinct, and as such a social way of looking at the universe. It is not taking it on its own terms."
Bearded Man: [His mind thrashed like a fish on land] "How can You say this? How do You know what the universe is like?"
Eerie Being: "I am the universe, remember?"
Bearded Man: [At a loss for an answer, he was quiet for awhile] "Do You talk to Your creations often?"
Eerie Being: "I contact minds sometimes. It makes my existence more interesting."
Bearded Man: "What do they do when they suddenly find themselves in Your presence?"
Eerie Being: "That depends on their cast of mind. Religious people like your-self perceive it as a visitation by a supreme authority. Hence they are usually afraid. Artists tend to perceive it as a sudden inspiration. They feel some kind of beauty in it. To scientists it feels as if a question about the workings of nature or some other general principle was answered. Many also experience it as a particularly strong impression of being one with their surroundings, but not much more than that. They tend to be matter-of-fact people."
(Once more he did not know what to say; nor was he sure what to think…. Still scathing at this meeting, eventually, the entity broke the silence.)
Eerie Being: "I see you are about to regain consciousness."
Bearded Man: [Realizing that the conversation was about to end, he asked] "What should I do now, God?"
Eerie Being: "Open your mind. Don't make it up in beforehand, don't jump to conclusions. Take things and people precisely as you find them. Above all, be critical and don't let others do your thinking for you. Question dogmas, seek evidence, and suspend judgments if you cannot be certain."
Eerie Being: [When he bristled, the entity said:] "Well, then, I will put it in simpler, more immediate terms for you: Get real, learn a skill, find a job and get off welfare. You could also try to fit in a little better; and do go easy on yourself. There's nothing wrong with a few violent or antisocial thoughts now and then, just so long as you don't dwell or act on them."
Bearded Man: [Again this was not what he had expected to hear] "What will You do now, God?"
Eerie Being: "I think I will listen to the gravity waves. Sometimes I can almost hear echoes of the Big Bang in them!"
He had the impression of his mind going dark. (This was different from the visual darkness which had surrounded him throughout the conversation.) He opened his eyes, blinked and looked around, still a bit dazed. Seeing that he was awake, the doctor came over and looked at him, took his pulse, checked his pupils and asked a few questions, then discharged him.
Leaving the hospital, he slowly walked down the street. The experience troubled him. He was a true believer. These thoughts should not have occurred to him. He wondered if he must atone for having had them and hence decided that the experience was a lull hallucination sent to test his sincere faith…? (He avoided thinking about who might have sent it.)
Whilst walking home, he mulled over a plan to convert this God dammed world – Lo! A new religion in the making!