Religion may be of a Book, but Spirituality has nothing to do with Books

The Existence – the Universe (or the Multi-verse, maybe?), the Solar System, the planets, the species and the human beings on Earth and everything else in between, function in an amazing harmony.  Harmony has nothing to do with “Peace”.  Just as the Galaxies are eating each other – violent bunch them!; tremendous purging and killing is happening within the bodies and cells of every living creature.  In Human body for example, many bacterial cells are fought and killed.  There is tremendous “bloodshed” at the galactic level and at the level of microcosm.  Yet all has worked clockwork for many millions and billions of years

From an unknown beginning – about which many scientists are still undecided – to the present, things have worked at various levels and dimensions.  With no one leading the orchestra, somehow everything has performed rather well.  We are learning that there are not just 4 but 11 dimensions to the existence (String theory).  At its most fundamental level, creation is not matter, but Vibration in the cosmic primordial energy (Creation is a Vibration).  Also that the reality is not really objective but subjective, as the Observer creates his own Reality – when Observer questions, Existence answers. [Eternal Illusion and How Observer Creates his own Reality].

And yet, at the gross and physical level, such assertions and realities seem too fantastic.

That there is an existential dichotomy – between the Primordial (foundational) and the Gross (physical) – is now known to the scientists.  The inference and understanding is indirect, not a direct experience however.  For example, no one was really “looking” for Higgs Boson – the particle which was the “missing link” between the Primordial nothing-ness and Matter – they were instead looking for ways to speculate with some degree of certainty that the Boson is there.  It was a derivation, not an experiential conclusion. [Higgs Boson or God's Particle: What is it and Why is it Important]

Strangely, the entire mathematics and the empirical evidence that confirmed all other characteristics of the elementary particles added a strange constraint – the elementary form of existence could not have mass.  That is, although it was clear as to how the Universes existed at the sub-atomic level, it wasn’t clear how it manifested the way it did at the gross level! The theory that was forwarded was the impact of “Higgs Field”, which if were to permeate the space and interact with the elementary particles in a certain way, it would lead to what was called the “Higgs Mechanism”.  This interaction would end up creating the phenomenon of “Mass”. However, for all this – Higgs mechanism – to work, there had to be a boson which was the counterpart of the Higgs field.  This unknown and undiscovered but theorized boson was called the “Higgs Boson”.

The question remains in all this – Can the Gross experience the Primordial?  Or are these two dimensions forever apart and “never the twain shall they meet”?  That has been the purview Spiritual Pursuit in the Dharmic world.

It is unmistakable that there is an intelligence functioning at so many different levels and dimensions in this Creation.  Stephen Hawking used the concept of Gravity to explain away what this Intelligence manifests.  The Religious use their imagination rather interestingly.  They have invented an old man, with all sorts of duties to perform, who somehow is also the owner of that primordial intelligence.

Whether one personifies or uses scientific jargon to explain the intelligence, it’s existence can not be denied.

Spirituality is Experiencing the Existential Intelligence

The central precept and goal of Spirituality is in experiencing the Primordial intelligence.  Not talking about it.  Not hypothesizing.  Not arguing.  Not deriving it.  Just living it the way it is.

That is why, even though everyone, infact everything is unique in this existence – the concept of Oneness which is entrenched in “Nothingness” has come about.  It has originated from the Spiritual parlance and experiences.

When the world was Newtonian in its scientific understanding, such talk was dismissed as witch-craft quackery.  In fact, unlike all the “New Ageys” in the West dishing out tomes and discussing endlessly in meaningless seminars about this “Oneness” – it was always the Eastern Mystics – the Dharmic and Hindu Sages who maintained – in that time and age – that this “Oneness” is the reality and not mere “superstition”.  It took many decades for even this concept to become cool.

And if one were to follow the progress of its ratings in the seminar circles, one can see very clearly that it became a viable topic after the Quantum Physics had made enough progress to make people stop in their tracks and exclaim “Damn!!  There is no matter there!  Only energy”.

So, how come something that was not in anyone’s experience or education was always talked about for thousands of years amongst the Hindus?

Because Spirituality of the Indian Sages was experiential in nature.  They had experienced it in many ways.  And it was repeatable.  It was something that could be produced if certain methods and certain ways were used.  The Truth of this Primordial Oneness that was intelligent was scientifically approached and repeated for many generations of Sages.

Religion may be of Books, but Spirituality cannot be

Abrahamic Religions are also called the “Religions of the Book”.  And that is where their Spiritual significance ends.  What is confined in a book, a prose, or words, cannot be Experientially Useful.  It is good for Ideological conditioning of the people who memorize and follow the book, but beyond that it is a meaningless exercise – in an Existential sense!

If Spiritual Truth – the Primordial Existential Truth – has to be experienced, then it has to be a Living Experience.  Not a discussion point!

It is one thing to write a book or do a PhD on the topic of Joy; but quite another to be Joyful!

Religion debates the nuances of Joy, has theories and hypotheses on it, arguments and beliefs (as well as non-beliefs) – so believers and non-believers – of Joy.  Those who argue, hypothesize, discuss, talk, write on Joy don’t care whether they have experienced Joy for even one 24 hour day in their lives.  They may as well be the most miserable human beings.  But they have written enough words on Joy to drown the world!

The writing down of Scriptures in India is a very recent phenomenon (and a forced one at that due to impact of the invasions).  And these Hindu scriptures are often fantastic and dialectic.  Never direct.  Yet, those who get the core of it, and have the necessary understanding of the process being laid out in them, have created a whole lineage of phenomenally Spiritual Beings.  It is the experiences of these beings that the scriptures lived.  That is why the words were never just simply read.  But used.

For Spiritual seekers, even the idols and Gods were tools.  The rituals, the devotion were not prayers in the Western sense.  No one was really asking for “goodies”.  But creating a experience of a dimension beyond one’s known.

That is why there is no one book.  Because no book can contain the way to experience that which is infinite and One.  And, conversely, if a book is what you have to brandish as your sole Spiritual heritage, then you have nothing worth much helping you experience the proverbial Joy!

Photo Credit: Robert Bejil / Antoinettes Yoga Garden

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