Why I Am An Atheist? by Bhagat Singh SignUp
Boloji.com
Boloji
Home Kabir Poetry Blogs BoloKids Writers Contribute Search Contact Site Map Advertise RSS Login Register
Boloji
Channels

In Focus

Analysis
Cartoons
Education
Environment
Going Inner
Opinion
Photo Essays

Columns

A Bystander's Diary
Business
My Word
PlainSpeak
Random Thoughts

Our Heritage

Architecture
Astrology
Ayurveda
Buddhism
Cinema
Culture
Dances
Festivals
Hinduism
History
People
Places
Sikhism
Spirituality
Vastu
Vithika

Society & Lifestyle

Family Matters
Health
Parenting
Perspective
Recipes
Society
Teens
Women

Creative Writings

Book Reviews
Ghalib's Corner
Humor
Individuality
Literary Shelf
Love Letters
Memoirs
Musings
Quotes
Ramblings
Stories
Travelogues
Workshop

Computing

CC++
Computing Articles
Flash
Internet Security
Java
Linux
Networking
Spirituality Share This Page
Why I Am An Atheist?
by Bhagat Singh Bookmark and Share
 

A new question has cropped up. Is it due to vanity that I do not believe in the existence of an omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient God?

I had never imagined that I would ever have to confront such a question. But conversation with some friends has given me, a hint that certain of my friends, if I am not claiming too much in thinking them to be so-are inclined to conclude from the brief contact they have had with me, that it was too much on my part to deny the existence of God and that there was a certain amount of vanity that actuated my disbelief.

Well, the problem is a serious one.

I do not boast to be quite above these human traits. I am a man and nothing more. None can claim to be more. I also have this weakness in me. Vanity does form a part of my nature. Amongst my comrades I was called an autocrat. Even my friend Mr. B.K. Dutt sometimes called me so. On certain occasions I was decried as a despot. Some friends do complain and very seriously too that I involuntarily thrust my opinions upon others and get my proposals accepted. That this is true up to a certain extent, I do not deny. This may amount to egotism. There is vanity in me in as much as our cult as opposed to other popular creeds is concerned. But that is not personal. It may be, it is only legitimate pride in our cult and does not amount to vanity. Vanity or to be more precise "Ahankar" is the excess of undue pride in one's self. Whether it is such an undue pride that has led me to atheism or whether it is after very careful study of the subject and after much consideration that I have come to disbelieve in God, is a question that I, intend to discuss here. Let me first make it clear that egotism and vanity are two different things. 

In the first place, I have altogether failed to comprehend as to how undue pride or vain-gloriousness could ever stand in the way of a man in believing in God. I can refuse to recognize the greatness of a really great man provided I have also achieved a certain amount of popularity without deserving it or without having possessed the qualities really essential or indispensable for the same purpose. That much is conceivable. But in what way can a man believing in God cease believing due to his personal vanity?

There are only two Ways.
The man should either begin to think himself a rival of God
or he may begin to believe himself to be God.


In neither case can he become a genuine atheist. In the first case he does not even deny the existence of his rival. In the second case as well he admits the existence of a conscious being behind the screen guiding all the movements of nature. It is of no importance to us whether he thinks himself to be that supreme being or whether he thinks the supreme conscious being to be somebody apart from himself. The fundamental is there. His belief is there. He is by no means an atheist. Well, here I am I neither belong to the first category nor to the second.

I deny the very existence of that Almighty Supreme being. Why I deny it shall be dealt with later on. Here I want to clear one thing, that it is not vanity that has actuated me to adopt the doctrines of atheism. I am neither a rival nor an incarnation nor the Supreme Being Himself. One point is decided, that it is not vanity that has led me to this mode of thinking. Let me examine the facts to disprove this allegation. According to these friends of mine I have grown vain-glorious perhaps due to the undue popularity gained during the trials-both Delhi Bomb and Lahore conspiracy cases. Well, let us see if their premises are correct. My atheism is not of so recent origin. I had stopped believing in God when I was an obscure young man, of whose existence my above mentioned friends were not even aware. At least a college student cannot cherish any short of undue pride which may lead him to atheism. Though a favorite with some professors and disliked by certain others, I was never an industrious or a studious boy. I could not get any chance of indulging in such feelings as vanity. I was rather a boy with a very shy nature, who had certain pessimistic dispositions about the future career. And in those days, I was not a perfect atheist. My grand-father under whose influence I was brought up is an orthodox Arya Samajist. An Arya Samajist is anything but an atheist. After finishing my primary education I joined the DAV. School of Lahore and stayed in its Boarding House for full one year. There, apart from morning and evening prayers, I used to recite "Gayatri Mantra" for hours and hours. I was a perfect devotee in those days. Later on I began to live with my father. He is a liberal in as much as the orthodoxy of religions is concerned. It was through his teachings that I aspired to devote my life to the cause of freedom. But he is not an atheist. He is a firm believer. He used to encourage me for offering prayers daily. So, this is how I was brought up. In the Non-Co-operation days I joined the National College. it was there that I began to think liberally and discuss and criticize all the religious problems, even about God. But still I was a devout believer. By that time I had begun to preserve the unshorn and unclipped long hair but I could never believe in the mythology and doctrines of Sikhism or, any other religion. But I had a firm faith in God's existence.

Later on I joined the revolutionary party. The first leader with whom I came in contact, though not convinced, could not dare to deny the existence of God. On my persistent inquiries about God, he used to say, "Pray whenever you want to". Now this is atheism less courage required for the adoption of that creed. The second leader with whom I came in contact was a firm believer. Let me mention his name-respected comrade Sachindra Nath Sanyal, now undergoing life transportation in connexion with the Karachi conspiracy case. From the every first page of his famous and only book, "Bandi Jivan" (or Incarcerated Life), the Glory of God is sung vehemently. In the last page of the second part of that beautiful book his mystic-because of Vedantism ' praises showered upon God form a very conspicuous part of his thoughts.

"The Revolutionary leaflet" distributed throughout India on January 28th, 1925, was according to the prosecution story the result of his intellectual labor, Now, as is inevitable in the secret work the prominent leader expresses his own views, which are very dear to his person and the rest of the workers have to acquiesce in them-in spite of differences, which they might have. In that leaflet one full paragraph was devoted to praise the Almighty and His rejoicings and doing. That is all mysticism. What I wanted to point out was that the idea of disbelief had not even germinated in the revolutionary party. The famous Kakori martyrs - all four of them-passed their last day in prayers. Ram Prasad Bismil was an orthodox Arya Samajist. Despite his wide studies in the field of Socialism and Communism, Rajen Lahiri could not suppress his desire, of reciting hymns of the Upanishads and the Gita. I saw only one man amongst them, who never prayed and used to say, "Philosophy is the outcome of human weakness or limitation of knowledge". He is also undergoing a sentence of transportation for life. But he also never dared to deny the existence of God.

UP to that period I was only a romantic idealist revolutionary. Uptil then we were to follow. Now came the time to shoulder the whole responsibility. Due to the inevitable reaction for some time the very existence of the Party seemed impossible. Enthusiastic comrades - nay leaders - began to jeer at us. For some time I was afraid that some day I also might not be convinced of the futility of our own program. That was a turning point in my revolutionary career. "Study" was the cry that reverberated in the corridors of my mind. Study to enable yourself to face the arguments advanced by opposition. Study to arm yourself with arguments in favor of your cult. I began to study. My previous faith and convictions underwent a remarkable modification. The Romance of the violent methods alone which was so prominent amongst our predecessors, was replaced by serious ideas. No more mysticism, no more blind faith. Realism became our cult. Use of force justifiable when resorted to as a matter of terrible necessity: non-violence as policy indispensable for all mass movements. So much about methods.

The most important thing was the clear conception of the ideal for which we were to fight, As there were no important activities in the field of action I got ample opportunity to study various ideals of the world revolution. I studied Bakunin, the Anarchist leader, something of Marx the father of Communism and much of Lenin, Trotsky and others the men who had successfully carried out a revolution in their country. They were all atheists. Bakunin's "God and State", though only fragmentary, is an interesting study of the subject. Later still I came across a book entitled 'Common Sense' by Nirlamba Swami. It was only a sort of mystic atheism. This subject became of utmost interest to me. By the end of 1926 I had been convinced as to the baselessness of the theory of existence of an almighty supreme being who created, guided and controlled the universe. I had given out this disbelief of mine. I began discussion on the subjects with my friends. I had become a pronounced atheist. But, what it meant will presently be discussed.

In May 1927 I was arrested at Lahore. The arrest was a surprise. I was quite unaware of (he fact that the police wanted me. All of a sudden while passing through a garden I found myself surrounded by police. To my own surprise, I was very calm at that time. I did not feel any sensation, neither did I experience any excitement. I was taken into police custody. Next day I was taken to the Railway Police lock-up where I was to pass full one month. After many day's conversation with the Police officials I guessed that they had some information regarding my connexion with the Kakori Party and my other activities in connexion with the revolutionary movement. They told me that I had been to Lucknow while the trial was going on there, that I had negotiated a certain scheme about their rescue, that after obtaining their approval, we had procured some bombs, that by way of test one of the bombs was thrown in the crowd on the occasion of Dussehra 1926. They further informed me, in my interest, that if I could give any statement throwing some light on the activities of the revolutionary party, I was not to be imprisoned but on the contrary set free and rewarded even without being produced as an approver in the Court. I laughed at the proposal. It was all humbug.

People holding ideas like ours do not throw bombs on their own innocent people. One fine morning Mr. Newman, the then Senior Superintendent of CID., came to me. And after much sympathetic talk with me imparted-to him-the extremely sad news that if I did not give any statement as demanded by them, they would be forced to send me up for trial for conspiracy to wage war in connexion with Kakori Case and for brutal murders in connexion with Dussehra Bomb outrage. And he further informed me that they had evidence enough to get me convicted and hanged.

In those days I believed - though I was quite innocent - the police could do it if they desired. That very day certain police officials began to persuade me to offer my prayers to God regularly both the times. Now I was an atheist. I wanted to settle for myself whether it was in the days of peace and enjoyment alone that I could boast of being an atheist or whether during such hard times as well I could stick to those principles of mine. After great consideration I decided that I could not lead myself to believe in and pray to God. No, I never did. That was the real test and I came, out successful. Never for a moment did I desire to save my neck at the cost of certain other things. So I was a staunch disbeliever : and have ever since been. It was not an easy job to stand that test.

'Belief' softens the hardships, even can make them pleasant. In God man can find very strong consolation and support. Without Him, the man has to depend upon himself. To stand upon one's own legs amid storms and hurricanes is not a child's play. At such testing moments, vanity, if any, evaporates, and man cannot dare to defy the general beliefs, if he does, then we must conclude that he has got certain other strength than mere vanity. This is exactly the situation now. Judgment is already too well known. Within a week it is to be pronounced. What is the consolation with the exception of the idea that I am going to sacrifice my life for a cause ? A God-believing Hindu might be expecting to be reborn as a king, a Muslim or a Christian might dream of the luxuries to be- enjoyed in paradise and the reward he is to get for his sufferings and sacrifices. But what am I to expect? I know the moment the rope is fitted round my neck and rafters removed, from under my feet. That will be the final moment, that will be the last moment. I, or to be more precise, my soul, as interpreted in the metaphysical terminology, shall all be finished there. Nothing further.

A short life of struggle with no such magnificent end, shall in itself be the reward if I have the courage to take it in that light. That is all. With no selfish motive, or desire to be awarded here or hereafter, quite disinterestedly have I devoted my life to the cause of independence, because I could not do otherwise. The day we find a great number of men and women with this psychology who cannot devote themselves to anything else than the service of mankind and emancipation of the suffering humanity; that day shall inaugurate the era of liberty.

Not to become a king, nor to gain any other rewards here, or in the next birth or after death in paradise, shall they be inspired to challenge the oppressors, exploiters, and tyrants, but to cast off the yoke of serfdom from the neck of humanity and to establish liberty and peace shall they tread this-to their individual selves perilous and to their noble selves the only glorious imaginable-path. Is the pride in their noble cause to be ' misinterpreted as vanity? Who dares to utter such an abominable epithet? To him, I say either he is a fool or a knave. Let us forgive him for he can not realize the depth, the emotion, the sentiment and the noble feelings that surge in that heart. His heart is dead as a mere lump of flesh, his eyes are-weak, the evils of other interests having been cast over them. Self-reliance is always liable to be interpreted as vanity. It is sad and miserable but there is no help.

You go and oppose the prevailing faith, you go and criticize a hero, a great man, who is generally believed to be above criticism because he is thought to be infallible, the strength of your argument shall force the multitude to decry you as vainglorious. This is due to the mental stagnation, Criticism and independent thinking are the two indispensable qualities of a revolutionary. Because Mahatamaji is great, therefore none should criticize him. Because he has risen above, therefore everything he says-may be in the field of Politics or Religion, Economics or Ethics-is right. Whether you are convinced or not you must say, "Yes, that's true". This mentality does not lead towards progress. It is rather too obviously, reactionary.

Because our forefathers had set up a faith in some supreme, being ' the Almighty God ' therefore any man who dares to challenge the validity of that faith, or the very existence of that supreme being, he shall have to be called an apostate, a renegade. If his arguments are too sound to be refuted by counter-arguments and spirit too strong to be cowed down by the threat of misfortunes that may befall him by the wrath of the Almighty, he shall be decried as vainglorious, his spirit to be denominated as vanity. Then why to waste time in this vain discussion? Why try to argue out the whole thing? This question is coming before the public for the first time, and is being handled in this matter of fact way for the first time, hence this lengthy discussion.

As for the first question, I think I have cleared that it is not vanity that has led me to atheism. My way of argument has proved to be convincing or not, that is to be judged by my readers, not me. I know in the present, circumstances my faith in God would have made my life easier, my burden lighter and my disbelief in Him has turned all the circumstances too dry and the situation may assume too harsh a shape. A little bit of mysticism can make it poetical. But I, do not want the help of any intoxication to meet my fate. I am a realist. I have been trying to overpower the instinct in me by the help of reason. I have not always been successful in achieving this end. But man's duty is to try and endeavor, success depends upon chance and environments.

As for the second question that if it was not vanity, then there ought to be some reason to disbelieve the old and still prevailing faith of the existence of God. Yes; I come to that now Reason there is. According to. me, any man who has got some reasoning power at his command always tries to reason out his environments. Where direct proofs are lacking philosophy occupies the important place. As I have already stated, a certain revolutionary friend used to say that Philosophy is the outcome of human weakness. When our ancestors had leisure enough to try to solve out the mystery of this world, its past, present and the future, its whys and wherefores, they having been terribly short of direct proofs, everybody tried to solve the problem in his own way. Hence we find the wide differences in the fundamentals of various religious creeds, which some times assume very antagonistic and conflicting shapes. Not only the Oriental and Occidental philosophies differ, there are differences even amongst various schools of thoughts in each hemisphere.
 
Amongst Oriental religions, the Moslem faith is not at all compatible with Hindu faith. In India alone Buddhism and Jainism are sometimes quite separate from Brahmanism, in which there are again conflicting faiths as Arya Samaj and Sanatan Dharma. Charwak is still another independent thinker of the past ages. He challenged the authority of God in the old times. All these creeds differ from each other on the fundamental question., and everybody considers himself to be on the right. There lies the misfortune. Instead of using the experiments and expressions of the ancient Savants and thinkers as a basis for our future struggle against ignorance and to try to find out a solution to this mysterious problem, we - lethargical as we have proved to be - raise the hue and cry of faith, unflinching and unwavering faith to their versions and thus are guilty of stagnation in human progress.

Any man who stands for progress has to criticize, disbelieve and challenge every item of the old faith. Item by item he has to reason out every nook and corner of the prevailing faith. If after considerable reasoning one is led to believe in any theory or philosophy, his faith is welcomed. His reasoning can be mistaken, wrong, misled and sometimes fallacious. But he is liable to correction because reason is the guiding star of his life. But mere faith and blind faith is dangerous: it dulls the brain, and makes a man reactionary.

A man who claims to be a realist has to challenge the whole of the ancient faith. If it does not stand the onslaught of reason it crumbles down. Then the first thing for him is to shatter the whole down and clear a space for the erection of a new philosophy. This is the negative side. After it begins the positive work in which sometimes some material of the old faith may be used for the purpose of reconstruction. As far as I am concerned, let me admit at the very outset that I have not been able to study much on this point. I had a great desire to study the Oriental Philosophy but I could not get any chance or opportunity to do the same. But so far as the negative study is under discussion, I think I am convinced to the extent of questioning the soundness of the old faith. I have been convinced as to non-existence of a conscious supreme being who is guiding and directing the movements of nature. We believe in nature and the whole progressive movement aims at the domination of man over nature for his service. There is no conscious power behind it to direct. This is what our philosophy is.

As for the negative side,
We ask a few questions from the 'believers'.

If, as you believe, there is an almighty, omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent God-who created the earth or world, please let me know why did he create it ? This world of woes and miseries, a veritable, eternal combination of numberless tragedies: Not a single soul being perfectly satisfied.

Pray, don't say that it is His Law: If he is bound by any law, he is not omnipotent. He is another slave like ourselves. Please don't say that it is his enjoyment. Nero burnt one Rome. He killed a very limited number of people. He created very few tragedies, all to his perfect enjoyment. And what is his place in History? By what names do the historians mention him? All the venomous epithets are showered upon him. Pages are blackened with invective diatribes condemning Nero, the tyrant, the heartless, the wicked.

One Changezkhan sacrificed a few thousand lives to seek pleasure in it and we hate the very name. Then how are you going to justify your almighty, eternal Nero, who has been, and is still causing numberless tragedies every day, every hour and every minute? How do you think to support his misdoings which surpass those of Changez every single moment? I say why did he create this world - a veritable hell, a place of constant and bitter unrest? Why did the Almighty create man when he had the power not to do it? What is the justification for all this ? Do you say to award the innocent sufferers hereafter and to punish the wrong-doers as well? Well, well: How far shall you justify a man who may dare to inflict wounds upon your body to apply a very soft and soothing liniment upon it afterwards? How far the supporters and organizers of the Gladiator Institution were justified in throwing men before the half starved furious lions to be cared for and well looked after if they could survive and could manage to escape death by the wild beasts? That is why I ask, 'Why did the conscious supreme being created this world and man in it? To seek pleasure? Where then is the difference between him and Nero'?

You Mohammadens and Christians : Hindu Philosophy shall still linger on to offer another argument. I ask you what is your answer to the above-mentioned question? You don't believe in previous birth. Like Hindus you cannot advance the argument of previous misdoings of the apparently quite innocent sufferers? I ask you why did the omnipotent labor for six days to create the world through word and each day to say that all was well. Call him today. Show him the past history. Make him study the present situation. Let us see if he dares to say, "All is well".

From the dungeons of prisons, from the stores of starvation consuming millions upon millions of human beings in slums and huts, from the exploited laborers, patiently or say apathetically watching the procedure of their blood being sucked by the Capitalist vampires, and the wastage of human energy that will make a man with the least common sense shiver with horror, and from the preference of throwing the surplus of production in oceans rather than to distribute amongst the needy producers - to the palaces of kings built upon the foundation laid with human bones.... let him see all this and let him say "All is well".

Why and wherefore? That is my question. You are silent.

All right then, I proceed. Well, you Hindus, you say all the present sufferers belong to the class of sinners of the previous births. Good. You say the present oppressors were saintly people in their previous births, hence they enjoy power. Let me admit that your ancestors were very shrewd people, they tried to find out theories strong enough to hammer down all the efforts of reason and disbelief. But let us analyze how far this argument can really stand.

From the point of view of the most famous jurists punishment can be justified only from three or four ends to meet which it is inflicted upon the wrongdoer. They are retributive, reformative and deterrent. The retributive theory is now being condemned by all the advanced thinkers. Deterrent theory is also following the same fate. Reformative theory is the only one which is essential, and indispensable for human progress. It aims at returning the offender as a most competent and a peace-loving citizen to the society. But what is the nature of punishment inflicted by God upon men even if we suppose them to be offenders. You say he sends them to be born as a cow, a cat, a tree, a herb or a best. You enumerate these punishments to be 84 lakhs. I ask you what is its reformative effect upon man? How many men have met you who say that they were born as a donkey in previous birth for having committed any sin? None. Don't quote your Puranas. I have no scope to touch your mythologies. Moreover do you know that the greatest sin in this world is to be poor. Poverty is a sin, it is a punishment.

I ask you how far would you appreciate a criminologist, a jurist or a legislator who proposes such measures of punishment which shall inevitably force man to commit more offences? Had not your God thought of this or he also had to learn these things by experience, but at the cost of untold sufferings to be borne by humanity? What do you think shall be the fate of a man who has been born in a poor and illiterate family of say a chamar or a sweeper. He is poor, hence he cannot study. He is hated and shunned by his fellow human beings who think themselves to be his superiors having been born in say a higher caste. His ignorance, his poverty and the treatment meted out to him shall harden his heart towards society. Suppose he commits a sin, who shall bear the consequences? God, he or the learned ones of, the society? What about the punishment of those people who were deliberately kept ignorant by the haughty and egotist Brahmans and who had to pay the penalty by bearing the stream of being led (not lead) in their ears for having heard a few sentences of your Sacred Books of learning-the Vedas? If they committed any offence-who was to be responsible for them and who was to bear the brunt? My dear friends: These theories are the inventions of the privileged ones: They justify their usurped power, riches and superiority by the help of these theories. Yes: It was perhaps Upton Sinclair, that wrote at some place, that just make a man a believer in immortality and then rob him of all his riches, and possessions. He shall help you even in that ungrudgingly. The coalition amongst the religious preachers and possessors of power brought forth jails, gallows, knouts and these theories.

I ask why your omnipotent God, does not stop every man when he is committing any sin or offence? He can do it quite easily. Why did he not kill war lords or kill the fury of war in them and thus avoid the catastrophe hurled down on the head of humanity by the Great War? Why does he not just produce a certain sentiment in the mind of the British people to liberate India? Why does he not infuse the altruistic enthusiasm in the hearts of all capitalists to forgo their rights of personal possessions of means of production and thus redeem the whole laboring community - nay the whole human society from the bondage of Capitalism. You want to reason out the practicability of socialist theory, I leave it for your almighty to enforce it.

People recognize the merits of socialism in as much as the general welfare is concerned. They oppose it under the pretext of its being impracticable. Let the Almighty step in and arrange everything in an orderly fashion. Now don't try to advance round about arguments, they are out of order. Let me tell you, British rule is here not because God wills it but because they possess power and we do not dare to oppose them. Not that it is with the help of God that they are keeping us under their subjection but it is with the help of guns and rifles, bomb and bullets, police and millitia and our apathy that they are successfully committing the most deplorable sin against society- the outrageous exploitation of one nation by another.

Where is God ? What is he doing?

Is he enjoying all I these woes of human race ? A Nero; A Changez : Down with him.

Do you ask me how I explain the origin of this world and origin of man? Alright I tell you. Charles Darwin has tried to throw some light on the subject. Study him. Read Soham Swami's "Commonsense". It shall answer your question to some extent. This is a phenomenon of nature. The accidental mixture of different substances in the shape of nebulae produced this earth. When? Consult history. The same process produced animals and in the long run man. Read Darwin's 'Origin of Species'. And all the later progress is due to man's constant conflict with nature and his efforts to override it. This is the briefest possible explanation of this phenomenon.

Your other argument may be just to ask why a child is born blind or lame if not due to his deeds committed in the previous birth? This problem has been explained away by biologists as a more biological phenomenon. According to them the whole burden rests upon the shoulders of the parents who may be conscious or ignorant of their own deeds led to mutilation of the child previous to its birth.

Naturally you may ask another question though it is quite childish in essence. If no God existed, how did the people come to believe in him? My answer is clear and brief. As they came to believe in ghosts, and evil spirits; the only difference is that belief in God is almost universal and the philosophy well developed. Unlike certain of the radicals I would not attribute its origin to the ingenuity of the exploiters who wanted to keep the people under their subjection by preaching the existence of a supreme being and then claiming an authority and sanction from him for their privileged positions. Though I do not differ with them on the essential point that all faiths, religions, creeds and such other institutions became in turn the mere supporters of the tyrannical and exploiting institutions, men and classes. Rebellion against king is always a sin according to every religion.

As regards the origin of God my own idea is that having realized the limitations of man, his weaknesses and shortcoming having been taken into consideration, God was brought into imaginary existence to encourage man to face boldly all the trying circumstances, to meet all dangers manfully and to check and restrain his outbursts in prosperity and affluence. God both with his private laws and parental generosity was imagined and painted in greater details. He was to serve as a deterrent factor when his fury and private laws were discussed so that man may not become a danger to society. He was to serve as a father, mother, sister and brother, friend and helpers when his parental qualifications were to be explained. So that when man be in great distress having been betrayed and deserted by all friends he may find consolation in the idea that an ever true friend was still there to help him, to support him and that He was almighty and could do anything. Really that was useful to the society in the primitive age.

The idea of God is helpful to man in distress.

Society has to fight out this belief as well as was fought the idol worship and the narrow conception of religion. Similarly, when man tries to stand on his own legs, and become a realist he shall have to throw the faith aside, and to face manfully all the distress, trouble, in which the circumstances may throw him. That is exactly my state of affairs. It is not my vanity, my friends. It is my mode of thinking that has made me an atheist. I don't know whether in my case belief in God and offering of daily prayers which I consider to be most selfish and degraded act on the part of man, whether these prayers can prove to be helpful or they shall make my case worse still. I have read of atheists facing all troubles quite boldly, so am I trying to stand like a man with an erect head to the last; even on the gallows.

Let us see how I carry on : one friend asked me to pray. When informed of my atheism, he said, "During your last days you will begin to believe". I said, No, dear Sir, it shall not be. I will think that to be an act of degradation and demoralization on my part. For selfish motives I am not going to pray. Readers and friends, "Is this vanity"? If it is, I stand for it.   
 

18-Jun-2002
More by :  Bhagat Singh
 
Views: 43814
Article Comment Very important questions raised in this piece. Actually is quite embarrassing that even in so many years have never seriously read any of Bhagat Singh's writings. Questions are important, and responses will be longish too.

The questions raised in that are quite serious and pertinent (starting from section "We ask a few questions from the 'believers'"). As far as I have read the philosophies, I believe that only some of Vedanta philosophies even attempt at seriously answering those questions. Buddhist and Jain philosophy also take a shot at it but they do not have a concept of Supreme (at least the well known streams of philosophy in them) so those sidestep and do not make a serious attempt at answering the question of evil and suffering apart from Karma theory (which has the problem of "infinite recursion"). In some ways Buddhist position (at least the Madhyamaka) can be seen to be quite similar to current materialist philosophy that Bhagat Singh also alludes to but that has other serious flaws.

Let me also say that these questions are not new and have been dealt by different Vedanta philosophies to varying degrees. Also should mention that current scientific/materialistic theories have also existed for long in some form or other (Vaisheshika, Madhyamaka Buddhism to large extent, or Charvaka though last one can be easily discarded since it does not accept logic/inference as a valid source of knowledge and as a result invalidates itself).

I will restrict myself to the understanding from Tattvavada (or dvaita) which has the best and most satisfying explanation for this and other issues for me that have frequently plagued all theologies. A disclaimer: by no means I am pretending to be an authority in any philosophy much less tattvavada which is quite a complex one, so take these with a pinch of salt and can deviate from the true position of tattvavada. I have refrained from using much "technical" terminology here and restricted to plain English with few common Sanskrit words simplifying things in many places to try and impart the gist.

Towards the end I will also hint at the problems with the materialistic explanation of the world-view. Will write up more on those later.


First off will introduce a couple of concepts required in this context. One is the concept of "anaadi" or beginningless time, and related "anant" or endless time. Other is nature of time itself. It is somewhat counter-intuitive and can be taken as basic axioms: time (kaala) is beginningless and so are some other entities like the Supreme, prakriti, jivas and karma. I will avoid going into "pramana laxana" or the system of evidence here else it may be seen as a longish digression.

The concept of "anaadi" answers a number of logical contradictions that otherwise are seen in usual theologies. In this context it helps us understand the nature of jivas and then explain the problem of evil.

So first important point to note is that since jivas are "anaadi", so they were never created in the material sense but only in the efficient sense. Taking the classic example of pot and potter, a potter does not create the soil comprising the pot but gives it shape, size etc. This is the approximately how one can see the creation of jivas by the Supreme (Brahman). However unlike the analogy, the jivas, prakriti etc are completely (and hopelessly :) dependent on Brahman and cannot even exist without. More precisely tattvavada puts Brahman-jiva relation to be akin to "bimba-pratibimba" but will avoid going in more details.

While this may not seem like much, the above actually explains contentious questions like "Why God created humans or other jivas" etc. It was actually quite revolutionary for me when I realized the full import of this, having been only exposed to "enjoyment/law of God" as the article mentions. It is a travesty that nearly all of the modern day writings or "neo-vedanta" descriptions don't even touch upon these questions of utmost importance.

This then leads to second important question. Are jivas all fundamentally similar since anaadi? Here is where tattvavada (which is also categorized under Realism) differs from all other philosophies and traces the differences between jivas to fundamental differences in nature among them since anaadi i.e. jivas have had different proportion sattva, raja, tamas gunas since the "very inception" (so to say, though anaadi implies there never was an inception).

Some of these differences are insurmountable and fundamental e.g. (Chaturmukha) Brahma is inherently "superior" who is always "siddha" and never was subject to "agyaan" or lack of knowledge, which "baddha" jivas can never match even in Mukti (difference both in "quality" and "quantity"). Now this is quite an unpopular position esp in current context of "all are equal" but this is what it is and can be seen in reality where different people have inherent flair in different areas. Tattvavada traces these differences to not only past karmas, but down to basic nature of jiva itself. There are other more contentious conclusions, some of which I too don't agree with completely and will avoid going into those.

Given these, let me attempt to answer the questions raised in the aforementioned article. I tried to avoid a lot of explanation below but it has still become quite long but hopefully delivers most of what I was trying to express.


Question:

> If, as you believe, there is an almighty, omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent God-who created the earth or world, please let me know why did he create it ?

Answer:

To help jivas attain their true forms (as "embedded" in their natures). If it were not so then all jivas would have been hopelessly remained in "susupti" forever and no chance of attaining their true forms. So in fact all this is a huge "social work" since anaadi by the Supreme :)


Question:

> This world of woes and miseries, a veritable, eternal combination of numberless tragedies: Not a single soul being perfectly satisfied.

> Pray, don't say that it is His Law
> Please don't say that it is his enjoyment.

Answer:

Yes, this world is "dukhalayam" full of miseries which is considered as a temporary stop. The concept of Mukti may seem like selling daydreams, so will avoid going into that. The straightforward reason being the differences in actions/thinking arising fundamentally out of differences in nature (which leads to different karmas and their phalas etc).

From the viewpoint of eternity, this is a blip in the radar helping jivas attain their true forms progressively in various lives. Given that the true forms are for eternity, it stands to reason that the effort required in reaching there is proportionately large for we see in this world that achieving anything of importance cannot be achieved without proportionate effort. Still in terms of direct proportion, achieving an infinite state for finite effort does not seem justified, which is where the grace of Supreme comes in.

The Laws of Dharma are also since anaadi and the Supreme chooses to uphold them for the above reason. For the Supreme is not merely omnipotent etc, but also possessing other qualities like perfect justice. A glimpse of the nature of justice is seen in this world and by our analytical minds, where we see that effort is required to achieve anything substantial. The Supreme has no reason to seek any enjoyment being perfect in that respect. The full implications of this from tattvavada point of view are mentioned later.


Question:

> Why did the Almighty create man when he had the power not to do it?

Answer:

No material creation of jivas, but only efficient creation as mentioned before. Reason for latter have been mentioned in the reply to first question above. However, jivas are completely dependent on Brahman for even their existence every moment so it is not to be implied that Brahman has not much to do with jivas.


Question:

> Had not your God thought of this or he also had to learn these things by experience, but at the cost of untold sufferings to be borne by humanity?

Answer:

This is now onto the crux of the problem. When we see all the suffering in this world, it leaves no justification for a just God or whatever.

I have elaborated a bit in answer to second question where one needs to look at it in the perspective of eternity where all this is just a blip for a jiva. Both retribution and reformation are seen as required even in today's justice system and the process of rebirth addresses both. The role of rebirth in reformation is undermined quite a bit in the article. By the arrangement of nature a jiva mostly forgets the previous life (except in few rare cases where we have seen children remembering past life for few years in cases of accident) but carries through the *impressions*. If one were to carry through good and bad memories throughout all the millions of lives, it would certainly drive everyone mad. On the other hand if one were to forget entirely, then no progress would be possible. Thus the arrangement is to accumulate the impressions which helps mould the true nature of jivas progressively in so many births until the final true form is achieved. Depending on the deeds, one attains a better or worse position in next life, but in either case progress is not to be hindered in higher sense since the impressions so accumulated mould the jiva to strive for better proximity to own self and Supreme bit by bit.

More importantly I would like to elaborate on the aspect of how one should look at the own suffering. That will bring out the real beauty of the philosophy meant to help guide humans.

Tattvavada and similar Vedanta philosophies have always scorned upon looking at the suffering or enjoyment as fruits of past karmas alone for it leads to a cycle of hopelessness that the article also expresses. So the state of equanimity is said to be highest and where all fruits of actions are dedicated to Supreme. Still, the question remains: how should one take on suffering in poverty, disease, old age etc for they have been a visible fact since humankind has existed in this world and a pipe dream of all round utopia has only brought hopelessness?

Quoting from Brahadaranyaka Upanishad and others, Madhvacharya emphasises on this: that we should see upon all suffering as sadhana for Brahman only. Not only that, one should also meditate upon all the suffering and deaths in all previous lives as sadhana to attain Hari only who is dearest to jivas.

When a human starts to look upon all these as a small effort to achieve the near impossible otherwise (i.e. an infinitesimal Being trying to attain the Infinite), then progressively the relation between jiva and Brahman starts to be revealed in the true perspective as per the capacity of each jiva. The relation being so strong and having been so since eternity, a jiva starts realising that it is Hari who has been satisfying and sustaining our existence since anaadi with no gain in return (not even an implicit acknowledgement), and some shades of which are seen in mother-child relation in this world, then the absolute nature of that relation shines forth.

The charge of non-action levied against these philosophies, can easily be turned around into worse for materialistic philosophies for they can be charged with propagating hopelessness only, and thus Charvaka style "only enjoy oneself as much as possible" would be a much worse logical conclusion.

Rest of the charges of "imposed by Brahmins to suppress" do not have much to stand on when the above perspective, explanation and course of action to be adopted is accepted. For the caste categorization has no bearing on the basic philosophy itself, and trying to remove all exploitation/suffering with all might is inherent in the above philosophy itself.

Decoding the complex entangled webs of karma-phala of all jivas leading to various kinds of enjoyments/suffering should not be seen as having much importance for self when this understanding is reached upon. However, it does not excuse one of turning a blind eye to others' suffering in any way. Indeed when this understanding is reached upon and as one gets closer to Supreme, then the qualities of empathy, kindness start arising much more strongly by virtue of being closer to own self and Supreme. So one becomes ever more eager to let them loose, to help others progress in whatever way possible. (Even though this seems like a bunch of words only, it has to be experienced to be believed.) Only difference being that when one is established in such knowledge, then the end-target to be achieved for others may differ somewhat from before though the means may look quite similar. It also propels one to make ever more efforts than before, for one's sattvik nature starts getting exposed, while tendency for non-action (e.g. on pretexts like "let God or someone else do it" or "it is their karma" or "it is too difficult") diminishes for that is borne from tamas.


In above paras, I have tried to explain most of the objections raised in the article. Some fine points may have been missed but answers to those can be easily derived from above explanation.

In conclusion, I would like to mention that above is mostly from readings, self-deliberation borne from own experiences and I haven't had the fortune to understand from a wise teacher so it may miss a lot of things or have errors. Then again my own real life experiences are quite limited so may be missing a lot of perspective. However, would like to mention a few questions that lead me to question my own scientific/materialistic viewpoints of old. Will keep them brief for more details in this write-up will not serve a lot of purpose:

1) In current stage of science, it has no scope for describing the "nature of sensations" themselves i.e. how you, I and everyone perceives things all the time. It accepts things like heat, light etc. but does not touch upon the nature of sensations themselves. If one were to say that it is due to this complex bio-chemical-electrical reaction, then it is just a more complex form of something simple i.e. wave/particle moving, causing some other complex chain etc. But can one say that an identical complex chain of events in a test-tube, for example, can lead to the insides of that test-tube starting to have any sensation? And even if one were to postulate that it can, then does science even touch upon it as to what a sensation is? It will still be only a more complex form of something described as electro-chemical, but "sensation" as we perceive all the time is on an entirely different level altogether (which unfortunately cannot be touched by current tools of science).

When I first realized this, then saw how ill-equipped science was due to its own boundaries to even describe something that all of us directly observe all the time.

2) All these round-about explanations that all this that we perceive came out of essentially nothing doesn't make sense at all to me. Physicists also recognize this, so it is explained as essentially that "the state before plank time or whatever after big-bang is indeterminate" thus skirting the issue. Ultimately it stands to reason that something has always been there in some form or the other which has been transforming (and "anaadi" is a logical consequence).

3) Given that logically something must have existed since anaadi, and the observation that entropy or disorder increases with time, it stands to reason that there must be a force external to the material universe that changes the state of disorder to that of perfect order (at each "big-bang" or whatever one may choose to call the start of a cycle of creation in the infinite cycles since anaadi).

More accurately described logical flaws have been dwelt upon by Vedanta schools. I am not presenting these as very detailed technical objections but just the way I see why the materialistic philosophies on their own do not and more importantly *cannot* explain things as they stand. Nor can they lead to a consistent meaning of Dharma i.e. what should be the proper course of action and what not.
Sumedh
03/26/2014
Article Comment Salute to the freedom fighter Shaheed Bhagat Singh..Your work is commendable and one of the greatest inspiration for all of us..But there many thoughts of him which are not true at all.

Spirituality is mother of all sciences. The aircraft which we see these days were invented a long before by our Rishi munis.

Like science.Spirituality also has theory and practical. And an aethist is not one who doesn't believe in God ..its one who has not seen God.

If a blind person cannot see Sun then it doesn't mean that the sun doesn't exist. Similarly if one did not see god, it doesn't mean that God doesn't exist. God can be seen, realized..

Swami Vivekanananda ji says: if there is god me must see him and if there is soul we must perceive it. Also he said that Yes God can be seen and i have seen and realized through the perfect spiritual master Ram Krishna Paramhans.

And m not talking merely a fake thing. Doubted person can check with the authentic books.

God has freed people for his acts..it is we who have to chose the path..
kritika Singh
05/10/2013
Article Comment so learned intelligent logical clarity if there was god all the three revolutionaries would have come alive from the gallows
Dinesh Kumar Menon
03/23/2013
Article Comment that is an awesome thouhtfull writting. i see main thing is firmness. whether u believer or atheist it doesnt matter. even u know that u r dying and still u dont try to rely on somrthing virtual is awesomeness. thats what i liked about bhagat singh. am strong believer of god. but i love this article.

even if u believe in god you should not ask for any help in ur final days.coz tou should love him without any expectations and thats what bhagat singh did. suppose that if bhagat singh used to believe god, his nature was not to ask any help, any kind of help to protect him or to ask for even mental strength.......love u bhagat singh...God love such atheist than those bullshit Narendra swami and bullshit sadhus on astha channels.
Mayur
03/08/2013
Article Comment we should understand one thing the book is about how he became an atheist.he is not forcing anybody to become atheist.theist never follow bhagat, follow god, for your godsake never hurt a single heart in the name of caste,religion,race,status and wealth. If you could follow this...... every atheist and even bhagat singh will believe in god.known humanity is better then unknown god. Jai bhagat.................. jaihind.
kabi thambi
02/19/2013
Article Comment THIS THINKING OF ATHEIST MADE HIM TO OVERCOME OVER THE FEAR OF DEATH
LONG LIVE THE REVOLUTION!!!!! LONG LIVE BHAGAT SINGH
Abhishek upadhyay
02/02/2013
Article Comment MAY BE SHAHEED BHAGAT SINGH WAS RIGHT, BUT STILL SOME QUESTIONS REMAIN UNANSWERED . WHAT EXPLAINATION DO WE HAVE FOR SPIRITUALISM AND THE BLACK MAGIC., HOW SOME PEOPLE CAN DO THINGS WHICH ARE MAGICAL.

ANOTHER FACT , YOU SAY THAT ACCIDENTALLY SOME MATTER STARTED COMING TOGETHER SUDDENLY, COULD YOU EXPLAIN WHAT KEPT IT APART TILL THAT TIME. WHICH FORMED NUBELA.

HOW CAN YOU FORM LIFE FROM NON LIVING SUBSTANCES. EVEN AFTER LOT OF RESEARCH SCIENTISTS COULD NOT EXPLAIN THE EVOLUTION OF LIFE WITHOUT CONJECTURE.

BHAGAT SINGH WAS A LEGEND. AND HE WILL ALWAYS BE REMEMBERED FOR HIS SACRIFICE. AND THE LOVE HE POSSESED FOR THE MANKIND.
marshal
01/06/2013
Article Comment Salute to shaheed bhagat singh .. Long live revolution .. Long live bhagat singh raj guru sukhdev .. Bk dutt... Azad ... ..hats off to thinking of bhagat singh ..
Daljit singh kamboj
11/12/2012
Article Comment it is naive to eradicate castiesm, racism, fascism,feudalism in theist society. Be an atheist.
balagangadhar
10/22/2012
Article Comment Oh, Brothers please weak up. Why you think there should be God to make people. Simply answer one question if there is a God then where he is in those temples where the Brambhin take bride to arrange your pujas
Sanjay Bag
08/08/2012
Article Comment this essay is biggest slap on indian communist who support islamic terrorism.All indian communist are lover of islam and supporter of taliban.cpi and cpm not support bhagat singh and his comrade.And also publish book in which they write that Bhagat singh is terrorist.so cpi and other indian communist are fraud.bhagat singh is true communist and we follower of them.Long live revolution down with Islamic fascism
comrade lenin
07/31/2012
Article Comment where is God and what is he doing? this question says it all. no one can answer this question. o come on ...........be practical. people like you and me keeps on coming and going in this place you call it.........world. have you ever noticed the existence..........but people like Bhagat singh still exists........that is why we are commenting here. have you ever commented on God or any doing of his on the internet. If something good like God ever exists......then there would have been no human in this place you call it WORLD. I have never listened to any sacrifice made by God but i have listened to the sacrifice made by BHAGAT SNGH.

Atul
07/10/2012
Article Comment as so many questions were raised above, these are obvious. there are situations in life which combat one to ask such questions. i am not saying that i am a atheist or theist. to think, that we are atheist is somwhere proving HIS existence. if we think like littlebit scientifically the nature and the energy which is governing the nature is of great importance. it accepts the whole. it is the god. now the question why that why bad things are happening is of no importance. there is nothing good or bad in nature's or so called god's dictionary. it accepts the whole. and every moment is taking place just to equilibrate the nature.........
sachin gupta
06/29/2012
Article Comment “I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own -- a God,
in short, who is but a refl ection of human frailty. Neither can I believe that the individual survives the death of his body, although feeble
souls harbor such thoughts through fear or ridiculous egotism.”
“I do not believe in the immortality of the individual, and I consider ethics to be
an exclusively human concern with no superhuman authority behind it.”
“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for a reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed.”-Albert Einstein
Ramandeep Sidhu
06/07/2012
Article Comment jesus christ is only a human being,,so ramhansa paramhansa ,,anakul chandra thakur,,and other great creature of existance.
god is not responsible for all the bad things happenning,,he is so kind that he even gave us the power to be an athiest..

love u god,plz forgive me for my sins nad let me sleep in ur lap
subhasish christche
05/25/2012
Article Comment As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.

Ecclesiastes 11:5

Rebekah
05/15/2012
Article Comment The way the article is written we all should hats off for shaheed bhagat singh,i am under influence of this article since last three days and not coming out of his magic power of arrangement,explaination of points.Just superb.I'm proud to be atheist.
dr roshan
04/10/2012
Article Comment I am really glad to read lots of thoughtful comments here.The great Bhagat Singh..he just believed in science,but even today after so much progress in every field there are so many qouestios unanswered like black holes,the origin of the universe.lots of theories but none of them is good enough that all the scientists could agree upon.like one of my friends here said that like Bhagat Singh most of the atheists just have faith about the people and their ideas they have read about and They have never personally experienced their personality and the other scientific ideas they just read and believe,same way the people who believe in God most of them have just read the holy scriptures and believed in god.but as some of the scientists have done the practical of some scientific theories have personally experienced that,same way lot of saints around the world from different faiths have meditated or any other way have experienced God. If Bhagat Singh had tried according to his faith Sikhism what was neccessary to meet god, and if after years of meditation on god's name had he failed then he had every right to say that god doesn't exist.but he didn't do that.all I can say is that like all the scientific theories he didn't personally experienced he choose to believe whatever he wanted to believe in.But by all means he was a great person,real patriot,and martyr .as far as the Indian independence is considered we should all thank Adolf Hitler. I m pretty sure my friends who have read history would know that after the WWII British just didn't have enough power and resources to keep india under control so they left.We didnt gain independence they just left india.And Bhgat Singh's dream is far from to true.till we have politics of religion,cast creed india can never really progress and we can never really be free..Jai Bharat
Jsingh
03/23/2012
Article Comment i definitely agree with you. THERE IS NO GOD .
o god please please punish me for this blasphemy...lol!!!
anirudh
03/23/2012
Article Comment he did every thing for us , and now we r forgetting him.................because our so called higher authories make him verry small in history..
himanshu
03/21/2012
Article Comment By reading most of these comments including Bhagat Singh's essay, I am really shocked that why we all people talk from only one perspective. My question is for all the so called atheists, how many of you have personally experienced all the scientific laws in your lives ? Lets take an example. Albert Einstein's theory of mass to energy conversion. How many of you have personally seen mass getting converted to energy ? But even after that we have faith that this law is really applicable. Because we have studied it in our text books.
Bhagat Singh also had never seen Bakunin, Lenin, Trotsky, Marx etc etc. But he still believed in their philosophies. This is because he has read about them and he was having the faith that all that is written about them is true without personally testifying every written record which is not possible at all.
One thing that is common between in all the atheists and the believers of the God is having Faith. Atheists have acute faith only in Science. Even though many of atheists have never experienced the scientific laws personally, even then they assume that all what is written in science books is true. My question is if they can assume that what their predecessors has told them to be true in case of science, then why can't they assume that God is there ?
Now taking the logical rationale behind my talk. In easier terms, according to Newton's 2nd Law, For every action to happen or to stop any action from happening, a force is needed behind it. Now Darwin has very beautifully explained how Life originated. Its because of certain chemical reactions that happened by chance. Now even for some chance to happen you need to have some force behind it. The logic says this. Nothing happens of its own. So from where that force came ? So, God is the name given to that energy which is the source of everything.
Now the question arises why have God created this earth which have so many sufferings and pains. First of all we have to correct our selves. Its not only the sufferings that are present on this earth. We also have happiness, love, sympathies present on earth. Now if you remove all the pains and sufferings from earth and let happiness and love only to be there, an equilibrium will be disturbed. Our logic says that everything is stable only when it is in equilibrium when positive and negative energies or forces balance out each other. Now if only happiness and love remains on earth, whole of the equilibrium of earth will get disturbed. So God has very beautifully maintained the stability of this earth by giving independence to humans to act by themselves.
As per Bhagat Singh, the concept of God gives comfort during the time of distress. Then what is wrong in that if you can get some comfort during the time of trouble. Lets take an example. If you are feeling very hot. You have an Air conditioned room nearby you. Now as per the logic of Bhagat Singh, if he is in place of you, he will not move to the AC room as he don't want to feel comforted during the time of distress. Now what we will call that ? I think the answer is with everyone of us. Moving to a comfort zone during the time of distress is not stupidity. Its intelligence.
Now I also consider all the senseless things like caste division, useless religious practices etc that happens on the name of Religion and God as ridiculous. According to me God is faith that is with me all the times irrespective of good and bad. So friends just give me a single reason that why should I be an Atheist ???
Sohrab Singh
02/27/2012
Article Comment I wonder, Bhagat Singhji studied so much varied international literature but how could he never studied Swami Vivekanandji. If he would have read swamiji he surely would have got all anwers about religion.

I think on religion no person is near to Swami Vivekanand.
Pravar Kulkarni
12/17/2011
Article Comment where was god when 2 million german women were raped throghout germany?
harpreet singh sohi
11/16/2011
Article Comment With all due respect to the freedom fighter, it is simply a case of "angoor nahin mile to angoor khatte hain". You should have met the enlightened ones- which themselves are difficult to find- they would tell you how they feel God. People's proof of God should be that there should be no suffering, everything rosy n peaceful n calm, everyone happy everytime, everywhere, no matter what Karma you do. Well, to simulate that, try inventing a game in wehich no matter how participants perform, all of them win and no one loses. Then see if anyone is interested to watch that game.
deepak
10/24/2011
Article Comment One of the most inspiring pieces of writing i've had the good forune to stumble upon. I know its out of place here but i'd like to narrate my journey to atheism.
I was a believer when i was young but seeing all the injustice around made me question the existence of such a malevolent god. But i couldn't find satisfactory answers to who created the universe and life on earth. So i believed in a deist god who created everything and then decided to 'sit back' without interfering in our lives. Last month i read 'The God Delusion' by Richard Dawkins whose arguments convinced me enough to become an atheist. I told my friends and parents about it. None of them took it seriously. They dismissed it saying i'm not old enough (i'm 21!) to understand such things and when i face adversity, then i'd turn to god. I'm ashamed to say that this created doubt in my mind-could i do it? Am i just a fair weather atheist or could i continue to stick to my belief (or is it disbelief?) in spite of everything? Thats when i came upon this piece of gem. I still doubt if i could be as strong as him, but thanks to his ideas and inspiration, i'll try my best not to give up my 'faith' till the very end.
I'm sharing this on my facebook wall hoping it'll convince atleast one my friends to start thinking rationally and examine his/her faith.
Long live Bhagat Singh's ideas.
bharath
10/16/2011
Article Comment It is quite amusing to read about “GODS PERSISTANCE in hearts of humane race. It is always a controversial issue whether god exists or not, much after the advancement of science and it is true in today’s realm that people worship in distress situation only. In the hours need to satisfy their greed human even can alter gospel; according to their own consciousness. I always ponder what kind of blind faith they have; in today’s context religion should be humanity and nothing else …
Dr Seema Sepat
10/03/2011
Article Comment @rdashby: Give me all your sources of how you know about God right from your birth and then I will let you know how you are a product of what your environment has made you.Have you ever tried to even look in depth at whatever you read about God or you just assume all the things given?

" I once wrote a poem in which I said there appear to be two types of person in this worrld, those who see the wonder and the beauty, and those who see the ugliness and suffering to the exclusion of the former. The one type sees life as an occasion of joy to thank God, the other an occasion of regret to curse or, if that would appear to concede God's existence, to deny God exists."

No my brother, you are incorrectly assuming that there are two types of person, one who sees good and the other bad.It is the different environment in which both of them lives.One who sees bad in his environment calls it bad and one who sees good calls it good.Or is their someone who has just seen good and just bad in their life?

Atheism does not sprang from the belief that if there is evil on the earth and hence there shouldn't be any God.
Let me tell you how the idea of God came into being and if you feel that I am wrong prove me wrong by justifying to me that God exists.

You see, when society became class divided and the owner class was created, when the system of ownership became firmly established and rules and regulations, laws and discipline were introduced, that is to say, one group of people ruled over others — at that time science was yet to develop. Science was then primitive — largely in the stage of magic. Man observed with awe and asked how fire burnt, rain fell, earth quaked, typhoon raged and how man originated, how he was born and why men died, and so many other questions. Why this sunrise and sunset at regular intervals, day after day, why this periodic change of seasons and ebb and tide, one following the other — such questions struck man’s mind again and again. But who could answer these? For, man was yet to possess that instrument, the science, which could provide the answers. While trying to find answers to all such questions of ‘why’ and ‘how’, a point struck the human brain, and that too at a time and surely not before, when the objective conditions were ripe for such an idea to arise in man’s mind. What was that idea? At a certain stage of development, man started to ponder: How is this society moving on in such a disciplined manner? Well, because there was one at the helm of society, a head of the state, a lawmaker. Just as there is someone who has to conduct everything in society and so society runs in an orderly fashion, just as there is a group of men who are the owners and the rest accept them as their masters, obey the laws framed by them and are moving as they are being driven, so also there must be one owner, the master of the universe who is conducting and guiding it to run in an orderly way. Thus, it is through this process of drawing analogy or drawing parallel between two different phenomena — that is following the logic of resemblance, which man, guided by common sense, is so easily prone to as also generally used to — that the idea of god was born in man. This in fact was the objective condition behind the emergence of the idea of god. And the objective condition was that man observed the owner, the slave master, the king governed the slaves in a disciplined manner, and so there was discipline among the slaves and order in society. Naturally, for this universe to run in an orderly way, there must be an owner, a master behind to guide it along.

So, from this we find that owing to lack of correct scientific knowledge in that period of infancy of science the idea of god emerged in society after the appearance of the owner class and the imposition of their rule in society. After the emergence of the idea in society that there is a Lord or master of this universe, the rulers of society started to use it in their class interest. From that period on materialism and theism, or idealism, have been running side by side in society.

Can't you observe the evolution of Gods and religion?I mean initially Gods were basically natural elements like fire,water etc.Have a look at the ancient Egypt and other old civilizations.When men knew that praying the natural elements has no effect on the way these elements behaves,he shifted his view to Polytheism.Then Polytheism was also abolished by many because either all Gods need to similar in their action to create things or they need to be interdependent.Either could not appeal to their appetite.Hence finally one God was agreed.

Now all these times either one assumption was correct or all were correct.What do you feel?And yes the famous idea that God sends apostles to make men know of his teachings.And those apostles had revelations which they tried to disseminate to the whole world.Some men agreed ,some not because of the doubt.I ask you why wouldn't God made revelations to all the men of the world at the same time at the same moment.Class division,I suppose.I mean there wouldn't have been a single doubt in anyone's mind.Now does my ability to observe the pain of the world or the good in the world has anything to do with my reasoning?Do you or any other theist can explain to me these natural evolution of God and religion?If yes you are most welcome.Atheist are the ones who study both the theism and Atheism and decide rationally whereas theists have only their literature at their disposal and assume the texts therein as given.
Even if God is there,he would be more pleased with atheists because of their rational approach and acceptability to read every kind of texts.
Aun Haider
09/29/2011
Article Comment The question Shahid Bhagat Singh has raised are very true. We can not deny those questions. And one who believe in God (due to the religious philosophies) should try to answer them. Or should have a good reason to believe in God

Also as he says not believing is god is very hard (which I think is true). Its like taking the responsibility of what ever happening to your life and your own duty to make it better and not leaving it to the faith or the some super natural force that things will go right. This take lots of courage, will power and self-confidence.

I also believe in God because some time the situation around me become so crazy that I have to leave it to him and keeping on trying my best.
Anubhav Agrawal
09/17/2011
Article Comment Uss manas ki ke kahein jo gudadi le ke so gaya.
Ek Bhagath Singh paida hua jo sir kata ke bhi ji gaya.
Robert Adam
08/31/2011
Article Comment I am simply speechless to read the entire article.Great way of expression!
With a view of the theory... question everything does itapplies to this article too?
Does the original version reflects the same thoughts of Bhagat Singh?

Commentator Aman Snehil got a valid point of.... how a man in his early 20's had studied Nero, Marx, Lenin and so much ........

LTTE leader velupillai Prabakaran lived an elusive life with an admiration to Bhagat Singh and Subash Chandra Bose with a vision of freedom from Srilanka's Singala Chavanism.Yet he was brandized as an terrorist as Bhagat Singh was named by British.

Long live Bhagat singh's visionary thoughts.
Raja Natarajan
08/26/2011
Article Comment Long will live the legend of bhagat sing......
There is no supreme power in this world or outside this world that will come & help the poor & needy people. This world is divided into rich people & poor people with rich slaving the poor with countless numbers of theories,gossips just to rule them.
Jagdish Awad
08/16/2011
Article Comment It is fair to assume that God did not create man, man created God actually. If God was there, surely, as Bhagat Singh ji surmises, unless he was sadistic and heartless, there won't be so much of suffering and pain in the world. Hindu faith is comical when it says man get reborn according to his karma. An illiterate, poor guy born in a hut is supposed to realise it himself that he has a deprived life because of his past karma and now he mustn't sin in order to hope for a better life next time. Give me a break. Islam and Christianity are downright foolish faiths that say you get ONE LIFE and now will get judged on Day of Judgment. If your Son angrily breaks a glass, do you burn his skin or reprimand him and explain why what he did was wrong? Islam is a terrifying faith where you can be punished first by Mullah and Ulema for anything you do or don't do and then in any case Allah is supposed to roast you in hell. What rubbish.

Salute to Bhagat Singh. What a great man. In his early twenties and look at his clarity, vision! Firm conviction that he WILL BE HANGED! How many Congressis who went on to rule and loot India later can boast of 5% of this kind of bravery and determination? JAI HIND
Atheist
08/15/2011
Article Comment I am feel very happy to read this eassy which was written by shaheed Bhagat singh.But there is one thing that hurt me that thay give a great contribution for the nation but his any remembable thing we r not obay!
sachin jain
08/15/2011
Article Comment This is most influencing quote, by a great man, who lived as well as died for other. Honorable Bhagat Singh was a person who lived by his own principals. His quote "why I am an Atheist" is very influencing, and I don't know about other but it had made me think deep, and come with a conclusion that we human, like fools blindly believe on something that does not even exist. I asked elderly and people from verious religions about this thought, but no body was able to give me a setisfactary answer. Only thing which they can tell was that this is almighty's wish. But by seeing so much war, terrorism and human suffering, I myself thought, Is god so cruel to cause so much destruction and suffering. And ultimatly I came out with an Idea, why to blame god when he does not even exist. He is just a product of human brain, and answer to those question related to unknown natural phenomenon, for which people generally don't have the answers. And thus.......a new follower of Bhagat Singh's Idea. I was an orthodox Brahmin, now I am an Atheist. Al the people advocating god do not have any answers to Bhagat Singh's questions, but only stupid phelosophy and reference to misleading books, which once were written by some people to mislead others and exploit them for their personnel benefits. I even ask the people who have posted their comments here in favour of god, if they can answer the questions raised by Bhagat Singh...and I am sure even they don't have anything substantial to support their thought.

God have caused even more destruction and devastation in this world. On the name of religion hindu and muslims are fighting each other, Jews and Christians are slaughtering each other. Greedy priests and clergys are sexually abusing child as we have the examples of christian priests of Rome and other European countries. And many sadhus and babas, Maulavis and other religious leaders have made billons, and looted people just on the name of god and religious. On the name of god and religion Maulvis have converted young men into terrorists saying that their barbarious act of killing inocents will led them to jannat or heaven.

My life completely changed since the day I changed into an Atheist, now I care for others and myself very much, because there is no one else to solve our problems. It is us who need to take initiatives and solve and our problems, and live a good life not for getting heaven or some reward after death, but for the betterment of man kind itself. And live life to its fullest.
Abhoy Kumar Pathak
07/21/2011
Article Comment Bhagat Singh himself admits in this article that when he met the first leader (that was Pandit Ram Prasad Bismil) he could not dare to deny the existence of God. Why? And in the same article he writes about him as an Arthodox Aryasamajist while he knew that Bismil was to be executed very soon and he will be no more in the world to be argued further.
These two facet of a coin does not reconcile the concept of his arguments as yet to me at least.
Even then I can say the contribution of Bhagat Singh deserves everybody's salute to his personatta.
Dr 'Krant' M.L.Verma
07/21/2011
Article Comment u r right shaheed bhagat singh... u r perfectly right in ur stance and u explain ti very well.... after reading this article even i hav started believeing tat theres some question on the existence of god... though i m not an atheist but i believe tat as v believe in no. of gods, tats the root cause for all the sorrows of ppl... if v didnt believe in god n religion then i dont think v as humans wil hav any conflicts.... long live revolution. long live bhagat singh.
yashwant
07/14/2011
Article Comment watever may b the answer to ur question or ur opinion on god u have done a lot to our nation now in this 21st century v enjoyining the freedom is only becoz of ur sacrifice and you will b always alive in every indians heart

ur sacrifies nd ur patroitism is unforgetable

LONG LIVE BHAGAT SINGH LONG LIVE

anwar
07/13/2011
Article Comment By all means shaheed bhagat singh has convinced the reasons that made him an atheist.and by the end he leaves a strong question on the minds answering which is a tedious task.....
Is is our unawareness or lack of strength or the inability to question the long rooted philosophies, that makes us believe in god ? it really requires time to answer......
Anyhow it is unbelievable that how a man in his early 20's had studied Nero, Marx, Lenin and so much ........
salute to u and ur virtues....
LONG LIVE BHAGAT SINGH.....
Aman Snehil
07/11/2011
Article Comment bhagat singh a great human being,he should have lead a beautiful and carefree life,instead he sacrified his life for our country

i salute and at the same time bow my head towards his mother for giving birth to a son whose ultimate aim in life was to serve our country selflessly,and not to obtain any reward in this world or in heaven

he will always remain the greatest legend ever
long live the revolution
inqilab zindabad
jayan
07/11/2011
Article Comment One person who had the power of long sightedness ......He had envisioned exactly in 1920's what is happening today.........His mission of his own death was successful,he knew that after his death there will be a storm amongst fellow indians and the british will be ousted and so it was...... Intelligent,brave,selfless and true son of the motherland...........Salute you Bhagat Singhji sir..............
Hardev Singh
06/15/2011
Article Comment the fight between belief n disbelief is probably never ending.what is remarkable here is that this man knows rather believes that once he would be hung up it will be over for him..nothing more...he doesn't hope to be an immortal soul watching us from somewhere praising about him..this is most strong a man can ever be..its easy not to believe in god,easier to believe in him..but what is tough is to give your life for a cause believing solely on the necessity of purpose and nothing else....
shubham chaturvedi
06/11/2011
Article Comment A rationalist, excellent thinker. And i am impressed that he didn't fight for freedom to go to heaven. Long Live Bhagat Singh.
Sajan Maan
06/06/2011
Article Comment Intellectual pride? If God created us as intellectual beings on His own image why shouldn't we be capable of recognizing Him solely with our free intellectual capability? But no, according to religion we need faith and anything that doesn't make sense to us about religion goes to the big bag of God's Providence. If God knows better why doesn't He explain us as a loving father would do? Didn't He make us smart enough? We atheist don't have this very convenient "bag" to explain whatever we find unexplainable, we just try to explain reality with our own honest and limited human intellectual capability and recognize it when we don't yet have a good answer to a question. So who is really accountable for intellectual pride, the atheist who recognizes his limitations or the religious person who presumes his God has all answers even if he does not know them?
Lucas
06/02/2011
Article Comment The comments were written a long time ago. rdashby, yours is a crass, self-serving distortion of Hitchens' and Dawkins' positions. If you're still around and reading this, message, and then I'll show you in no unequivical measure how what you've written is utter nonsense.
Raj
05/24/2011
Article Comment nice
anup
05/18/2011
Article Comment as bhagat singh mention the word ahankar in his text he him self says dat he is over confident and explained various example for his atheist...........wht ever hew says salute to u n chandra sekhar azad and rajguru and b.k dutta and your followers ............hats off to u...................as student of dav school you hav well knowledge about english even on those era.....................
deepak kumar
05/17/2011
Article Comment Thank you for a most thorough account of the basis of your atheism.

It always fascinates me how anyone can state outright he is an atheist. It appears to put him on level pegging with a theist, because they are both absolute views on something that is invisible, without form, namely, God. Of the two, the theist has no problem - simply because he doesn't question his faith, and continues to live a fulfilled life. The atheist, on the contrary, has surfaced out of an ordeal of reasoning process, with this fatal flaw - that his ruling out of God's existence is based on facts that (given God exists) are still part of God's creation. Take the existence of suffering. I once wrote a poem in which I said there appear to be two types of person in this worrld, those who see the wonder and the beauty, and those who see the ugliness and suffering to the exclusion of the former. The one type sees life as an occasion of joy to thank God, the other an occasion of regret to curse or, if that would appear to concede God's existence, to deny God exists.

What I have observed is that how ever much the atheist may say God does not exist, that does not mean God does not exist - the atheist appears to lose the distinction. Thus a Dawkins and Hitchins make God out to be a tyrant, Hitchins book title is 'God is not Great', whereby they confuse this as evidence that God does not exist. If God is a tyrant in their perception, at least God exists! - No, no, they riposte - because God is shown not to be good therefore God does not exist! To the man of faith, it is no argument, since the ways of God, so revealing of his power and wisdom in the vast creation, are unfathomable, and that all the suffering in the world is within God's providence, whereby, in the last analysis, no one is luckier than anyone else, except inasmuch as he has a knowledge through faith of God, who will deliver him spiritually in his hour of need - I say, that is the position of the man of faith. But the atheist is shown up as not comprehending the big picture, in which suffering occurs but is not outside God's providence, on which, of course, he bases his denial of God's existence, that is really a hatred of God.

In your last para, you ask 'Is this vanity?' No, not vanity, but pride, intellectual pride that even denies the existence of God. In the bible, even Satan cannot deny the existence of God, whom he refers to on occasion as 'The Most High'. The fall from grace of Satan was attributed to intellectual pride; and one can't help but discern his influence, and opportunism, in the intellectual pride of those who deny God's existence because to us men his form is invisible.



rdashby
09/22/2010
Article Comment You have asked some interesting questions. It is your job to find the truth and not mine to convince you. You do not know the answer, and you sound too proud to admit it and ask for the answer. Unless you take your pride away, you will not find the answer.
Ninan Mathullah
09/20/2010
Share This Page
Post a Comment
Bookmark and Share
Name*
Email ID*  (will not be published)
Comment
Verification Code*
B7B97
Please fill the above code for verification.

    

 
 
Top | Spirituality



Solitude and other poems by Rajender Krishan
 


    A Bystander's Diary     Analysis     Architecture     Astrology     Ayurveda     Book Reviews
    Buddhism     Business     Cartoons     CC++     Cinema     Computing Articles
    Culture     Dances     Education     Environment     Family Matters     Festivals
    Flash     Ghalib's Corner     Going Inner     Health     Hinduism     History
    Humor     Individuality     Internet Security     Java     Linux     Literary Shelf
    Love Letters     Memoirs     Musings     My Word     Networking     Opinion
    Parenting     People     Perspective     Photo Essays     Places     PlainSpeak
    Quotes     Ramblings     Random Thoughts     Recipes     Sikhism     Society
    Spirituality     Stories     Teens     Travelogues     Vastu     Vithika
    Women     Workshop
RSS Feed RSS Feed Home | Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Site Map
No part of this Internet site may be reproduced without prior written permission of the copyright holder.
Developed and Programmed by ekant solutions