Mimi keeps me focused on the issue of whether there is a ‘God’ or a ‘creator’. She asks:
I think I read that you grew up atheist….you began studying spirituality….you now believe in a creator of some kind, it seems… Do you have a specific instance when your thoughts turned that way or are you like me in that it was a gradual process?
I don’t believe in ‘a creator’. I do however feel sure that there is more to life than just the physical. This is based in some spiritual experiences I had when I was 18, 19. None of those made me believe in God. They did convince me of the reality of spiritual transformation. That there is something more. That there is a reason that the majority of humanity believes in God or gods.
I believe that the universe is in a continuing process of ‘creation’. There are ups and downs in that creation. I feel it is likely that there was ‘something’ before the Big Bang and that there will be something after a big implosion which will end the universe as we know it.
But I don’t believe that there is a one creator. I believe the ultimate One is both creation and creator. It includes both spiritual aspects and the physical. Ultimately. But specifically most (excepting perhaps the first movement in space) of what is has various forces behind it. Some of those forces are intelligent. Some of those forces aren’t. The intelligent forces represent ‘spirit’ or ‘the intelligence of the universe’ – theosophically speaking they are collectively the Logos. Logically that includes us people.
Some of those physical forces are known to our scientists. For instance the laws of gravity, quantum mechanics and evolution.
Since forces add up as waves do – I do believe that our individual consciousness is part of the consciousness of the universe – the latter is the adding up of all the waves of thought. That grand total is something which one might call ‘God’ – though I prefer not to use that word at all.
If however we do call that something God – God isn’t the ultimate source of everything, because the existence of thought implies a thinker (or several). The universe started (very inadequate word that) undifferentiated: thought and matter still one. In the poetic words from H.P. Blavatsky in The Secret Doctrine (from Stanza 1, which describes the furthest back into ‘time’ that we can go):
1. THE ETERNAL PARENT WRAPPED IN HER EVER INVISIBLE ROBES HAD SLUMBERED ONCE AGAIN FOR SEVEN ETERNITIES.
2. TIME WAS NOT, FOR IT LAY ASLEEP IN THE INFINITE BOSOM OF DURATION.
3. UNIVERSAL MIND WAS NOT, FOR THERE WERE NO AH-HI TO CONTAIN IT.
The Ah-Hi refer, in my interpretation, to any thinking beings. That includes people, but also possibly spiritual beings that think – like angels, archangels etc.
Note that Blavatsky struggles with time in this quote. In the first sentence she says that space had slumbered for seven eternities – which implies time, though a very long time.
Yet in the second sentence she says that there was no time, because it lay asleep in the infinite bosom of duration. I think that means roughly the same as the third sentence: what can the word ‘time’ signify when there is no one to experience it?
Mimi – I hope it is evident that when it comes to metaphysics like this, we have to use our intuition and let go of preconceptions about the stuff we are trying to talk about. I hope it is clear that while I believe in consciousness as a force in nature and evolution, I don’t really like the word God, though I can work with it.
The word creator is worse however. It implies a single person like being that worked the universe into something. However the ultimate One that is the ground or essence of everything would have to encompass both creation and creator. It is by definition higher than any specific creator can be.