From April 2008:
Words like love and god are of the most ambiguous. What do people mean when they ask ‘do you believe in god’ or say ‘I love you’. So few people see subtleties in the meanings of these words. Some even equate god with religion! Religion is just a socially accepted system of belief. It usually asks one not to question. And even those that originally had a spirit of questioning have become blind faith. But if people find some kind of peace in that, to each his/her own.
But to me, god has too many more layers. He/she’s like good poetry.
Most of the time he is a companion, a friend who I can cry to, thank and shout out. But I am an understanding friend in return. If he had to take away my friend’s parent, after shouting at him, I eventually forgive him and accept it.
I go to him for forgiveness too but most of the time he goes easy on me. It’s myself I have a problem with. I make myself do things to make up for my mistake- sometimes figuratively whip myself till I feel worthy of forgiveness.
But god isn’t just a friend. He is a big hug of warm benevolence when I need support. When I feel like it, I even pray. I don’t need a temple or a specific time. I just quieten myself and connect to him, like when an ambulance passes by.
When I walk into a friend I needed to talk to, or get a seat in the bus on the days I don’t feel too good, I thank him for it. He protects me when I have to pass any form of danger. Sometimes I think he’s designed my life in the path of enrichment. Everything happens for a reason. Coincidences hold meaning.
But god can be impersonal too. He can be in the love and respect one can feel towards every living and non-living thing that exists. He can be everything or nothing just like everything and everyone else can. The moments when one feels one with the whole world and exploding with love, that’s god, that’s love. There’s no distinction between god and the individual.
Like god, love is a wide spectrum of experiences that needs individual understanding rather than definition. At different stages of life, we feel different forms and intensities of love towards different people and things.
I love my family, school teachers, seniors, peers and juniors (more or less family), other friends, and even some of my college teachers. I love the dogs I pass on the way to college, and the trees in my neighbourhood. I love the wind and the clouds. I love music and books. I love myself.
This ambiguity is actually good. Why should love be limited? There should be a Fundamental Right to Freedom of Love and its Expressions. The world would be a sweeter place if we could hug trees without people thinking its weird; And hold a blind woman’s hand as she gets off the bus; And comfort a crying stranger; buy lunch for a street kid or a poor disabled person; And all this in a spirit of love, not pity or superiority. Love shouldn’t know any boundaries. It is not love if it does.
Post Script from today:
My views on this topic have changed considerably over the past three years. It warrants another post!