God is the ‘I’ of the Universe.
Ali mentioned this statement to me after hearing it in a seminar and is one of the more profound statements I’ve heard on God. God is the “I” of the universe. Wow. It’s had my head spinning for weeks since I’ve heard it. But to digest it completely, the context needs to be set. You have to realise who you are or more precisely, who you are not.
Who are you?
If you bumped into somebody who looks familiar at a coffee shop, you’re curiousity is just overtaking you and you’ve just got to ask him, “Buddy, you look really familiar, may I ask “Who are you?” ” How would he reply?
He would probably say, well my name is so and so, I currently work at this place and I have these people in my family etc. etc. Observe. The question asked was, “Who are you?” and the reply we usually give is, what my name is, this is where I work, this is who my family is. Dude, the question was on who YOU are. Sure we may be partially defined by our job, or who we are related with, but what if that changes? Tomorrow, what if you decide to change your name. You change your job (or business), and by getting a divorce (hypothetically speaking only) you can even change your family. But, have ‘you’ changed? You are still the same you. Aren’t you?
Who then, are you?
You are not your body.
I have heard Dr. Alidina, in one his speeches give a bit graphic yet effective example by standing in front of a crowd and saying, “Imagine my arm being chopped off. Now there are two distinct pieces of me. There’s me and there’s my arm, that would be lying on the ground. The arm would eventually disintegrate and dissolve into the earth. However the I in me has remained the same. Though I would be less by an arm, I still have the same thoughts, feelings, emotions, opinions I did before losing my arm. If I were to lose each limb, the same way “I” in me would still not change. ‘I’ am not my body.
‘You’ are not your body.”
The fascinating this is that…
You have a body, but you are not your body.
You have a name, but you are not your name.
You have a job, but you are not your job.
You have a family, but you are not your family.
You have thoughts, but you are not your thoughts. (Because ‘You’ can change your thoughts)
You have feelings & opinions, but you are not your feelings & opinions.
I do hope you’ve got that. Because, recognising Who you are not, is the first step of knowing who you are.
God is the I of the universe ~ Alfred R Orage
Just like we are so much more than just our jobs, or relationships, or our bodies, next time you’re out of the office, have a Look around. The world is alive. It’s continuously pulsating with a force. It can’t be seen but it’s there. We feel it. Right from the trees, to the ground, from the birds to the mosquitoes. It’s alive. Moving. Towards a certain purpose. But does the world know that? When a flower creates pollen, does it know it’s creating sustenance for millions of bees? Does it even know that it’s creating pollen? Does the bee know that each time it’s feeding itself it’s from flower to flower it’s helping in crosspolinating the flower? Does the Lyre bird know it’s making the most complex mimicking of sounds? Even that of a camera, a car alarm and a Chainsaw!
Gosh, there are million such examples. Next time you see anything in nature performing a certain function, ask yourself, “Does it know that it’s doing that?” (Eg. Does the tree know that it’s taking in Carbon Dioxide to produce Oxygen to support us Humans?) The answer is probably not. Then who’s the I who’s directing all this to happen? Could it be the universe is merely the body of God? Could it be that God is the I of that body? The I of the universe?
[Quran: Chapter 2, Verse 255] His knowledge extends over the heavens and the earth, and the preservation of them both tires Him not, and He is the Most High, the Great.
I saw your very witty ad campaign for Hosur Hills (we have a small-scale unit in SIPCOT 2nd phase and I have been going there frequently now) and posted about it, and was pointed to your blog, and am enjoying reading the entries very much. Indeed, this question, “who am I?” is such a fundamental one…the philosphy of one of the great seers in South India, Ramana Maharishi, is based upon this.
Very thought-provoking blog, and I think I will be following it…Khuda Hafiz to both of you!
I can’t begin to tell you how much of a high I’ve been on after reading your comment yesterday. Thank you so much. We blog because we just like to. But receiving a comment like yours makes it much more worth-while.
I clicked on your blog yesterday and boy, you’re really good writer and quite a keen photographer. I began right from the top on your latest post and was so engrossed that I read every post on your page. Do keep writing. Two of my favourite posts were this one & this one. And I specially loved the way you closed this post.
i have never thought of it this way. opens up a whole new way of looking at creation.
Welcome to our blog :-). Yes, to look for the I, behind the creation does give a very unique spin to the world.
Want to hear a statement that is even more mind-boggling? Here goes, if “God is the I of the universe”, then “Man may be the Eye of the Universe.”
Think about it, Man is the only known animal that seems to have a Consciousness. When I mean Consciousness, I mean for man’s ability to know that he knows. He can observe his actions, his thoughts, his feelings and even alter them if he so desires. If that’s true, that man may be the only Consciousness that there is, then man is the only one who Can and Does observe the universe. It’s he who is the Eye of the Universe. Woah!
The universe is so unbelievably massive. The very concept of a “light-year”, is so gargantuan that it blows me away. And to imagine that there are stars, planets and whatnots millions of light-years away, for who? for what? For just this lonely Eye to observe. If so, Why? Also what a gift and honour has been bestowed on man for him to have the opportunity to observe, appreciate, acknowledge and then even Question the creation.
Ps. Just like the first statement, it’s Ali, who heard it and pointed that out to me.