from / deepian / going beyond / alchemy / divine alchemy    posted by Ian Howie   on 19 Aug 14 at 13:49  

The concept of God has been called by many names, and is described and understood in many different forms. Most religious traditions humanise God in some way or other, though some see God as light, and others see God as omnipresent and formless.

The big western religions conceive God as an omnipotent and omniscient personality, who rules over us, and understands everything, and is responsible for everything. If there is such a God, then he/she/it is doing a very poor job! It is not surprising that westerners have turned away from such a "God". This is a mistaken concept of God, which is why so many people find it unbelievable. It is not the concept of God that I will use in these writings.

Eastern religions and philosophies have other interpretations of God. Some understand God as omnipresent, existing in every aspect of all of creation, but non-sentient, with no distinct form or personality or consciousness. The role of such a God is simply to encompass everything - to be the sum total and combination of all beings and all things. In our divine essential forms, we are one, and that oneness is God. We can call this union or unity of souls "the divine host". The divine host is the collective whole of all individual souls - the sum total of all of divinity - the creator of all of creation. This divine host form of "God" has with no separate form or personality of its own. As every one of us is an eternal and divine soul, so every one of us is part of this God. This God, then, is both everything and nothing.

Another understanding of God is that of a "Supreme Soul", a soul just like we are - an individual conscious entity with the capacity to think, decide and express love, joy, and happiness. This "Supreme Soul" is the spiritual parent of all of us, and omnipotent, having unlimited power and reach, but - like us - is not omnipresent. This God is not omniscient either, but rather is innocent of all worldly experience, because this soul never incarnates on a physical body. This God - sometimes called "The Watcher" - observes mundane life but does not participate. Unlike the omnipresent God, it is possible to have a personal relationship with this God, soul to soul. But this God will only understand divine matters, and cannot help us with the mundane matters of everyday life.

With these eastern conceptions of God, God's work is done through us. God is not responsible for anything that happens to us, but rather, we are responsible ourselves for everything. It is no good praying to God to fix things - we have to fix things ourselves, through our own behaviour and actions. Our thoughts, our words, our deeds, are what create our cosmos, including this physical universe. We are the creators of our own reality, and we are fully responsible for our own creations.

Whether we call it "God" or not, absolute divinity is an eternal and unchanging oneness, with no personality, and no individuality. It is an all- encompassing oneness, with no differentiation. This divine oneness is everything.

This divine oneness is absolute, meaning that beyond it there is nothing - no thing, zero. This is the "emptiness" of Buddhism. But this "emptiness" is simply the counter side of the fullness of divinity - the all-encompassing oneness. The "emptiness" does not exist in isolation, but only as the counter - a shadow side - of the fullness.

Indeed the concept of zero or nothing is the very symbol of non-existence. What exists is the fullness of absolute divinity. Divinity is never created or destroyed, and so there can be no emptiness, as the fullness of divinity is limitless in every respect.

So, the unlimited oneness of absolute divinity - the divine host - is the ultimate reality. This oneness has no form or personality. It simply is, eternal and infinite and changeless. It is a singularity, a unity - it is non- dual. To call it something is to imply that there is another thing. But there is no other thing. Everything is contained in this oneness. To call it "nothing" is misleading, as all of existence and all experience emanates from it, and exists only within it. And to call it "everything" implies a multitude rather than a unity. Truly, language and rationality are not capable of explaining this absolute reality. It is literally beyond our comprehension.

We have to stop thinking rationally to understand God. We have to use phrases such as "the nothing that is everything". But for now, I will do the best I can, within the limited bounds of rationality, to explain the unlimited further!

From out of this oneness comes everything - all things, every being, every soul, a multitude of differentiation, the illusions of separation, of individuality, of consciousness, and of experience.

As divine beings, we are all different facets of this one absolute divinity. And so we are all one - we are inextricably interconnected and interrelated. Each and every soul is an apparently separate and unique expression of the one whole, a divine personality. But our separateness is only apparent - it too is an illusion. The divine reality is that of absolute oneness. The individuality that we experience is a cosmic illusion. The cosmos itself is an illusion. Only the shared divinity is real.

We can call this shared divinity "God", or "divinity", or "the divine host", or "the absolute", or "the source", or "the truth", or many other names and descriptions. All of these terms are essentially interchangeable. I will generally try to avoid the term "God" in these writings because it has so many other meanings in people's minds - in particular the anthropomorphised conceptions of a ruling God. But I do consider the divinity that is common to all of us to be God. And this God - this divine oneness, the divine host - is the creator of all differentiation, and so can be understood as the "parent" or pro-genitor of every soul, and ultimately as the creator, sustainer, and dissolver of everything that ever is.

Whether we see God as the omnipresent sum of all of divinity, or as a separate soul like we are, the essential essence is the same: a divinity which radiates divine golden love-light - a divine sun. Just as the physical Sun radiates physical light and warmth, so the divine sun radiates spiritual light and love. God radiates pure and perfect love, peace, bliss, and power, constantly, to all souls, at all times. All we have to do is turn our faces to the divine sun, and we will be illuminated with divine energy.

But it is not just God that is a divine sun: we are, each of us, also that individually. Every one of us is divine and God-like in our true essential nature. So everyone of us is our own divine sun.

Unfortunately for us, we have the habit of turning our backs to this radiance, and we suffer deeply as a result. When we open up to the divine golden love- light, and absorb the pure divine energy that is always radiating, we fill ourselves with love, peace, bliss, and spiritual strength. So we should always be basking in this radiance of divinity, in harmony with our fellow divine beings. By doing so, we will re-divinise the world around us - indeed the entire cosmos - and will transform our world back to its original state of harmony, balance, and wholeness.