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Your own angels and demons

An agnostic and a believer is present in the personality of every human being

As we grow up we realise that the horizons of our mind are smaller than we once imagined it to be. The things we can know, understand and believe are much fewer in number than the ones in which we are supposed to blindly trust. We never grow up and become a know-it-all, as we would have thought as a child. The heap of cognition keeps getting smaller while the dubiety stacks up like a mountain.

One such riddle is the ever-intensifying confusion between mythology and religion.

Faith and wit have been fighting an eternal war in the human mind for a long time now. The mind-numbing conviction of faith bestowed upon us and the nerve-wracking realisation that it all may turn out to be a myth, the battle seems to be never-ending.

Two sides

As the wheel of time turns, the latter seems to be gaining momentum and its clinching grasp forces us to the conclusion that the world might be running randomly without any meaning or purpose. A series of random accidents making a continuum called life as we know it? Or is it just a reflection of your own thoughts, not mere coincidence? The opposite side always exists, however meek and quiet it may be.

Maybe, mythology and my faith do not necessarily come under the same umbrella. The material existence of any god and their superhuman aspects are questionable and can be critically examined from an agnostic point of view. But spiritually speaking, all these gods exist and they are the basic energy that scruples our very own thought process, which in turn webs the society’s conscience. That collective conscience, that faith, is what runs the world.

Myth and this faith have been woven so intricately that separating them would be spoiling our own very soul.

 Faith is stronger when they have a solid mythology foundation and mythologies are more trustable when we associate our faith. 

Hunger conquered

Recently I heard an interesting concept about Hunger Games at Mount Kailash, the abode of Lord Siva from Hindu mythology. His ardhanareeshvara concept is an esteemed one. Here goes the abstract version. 

The mount of Devi Parvathi is a lion and that of Lord Siva a Nandhi, depicted as a bull. Both are connected directly in the food chain, yet they stay together and calm without any hunger. The same is the case with the mounts of Subramanya and Ganesa, the sons of Siva. One has a peacock and the other a rodent as their respective mounts. To link and complete this food chain, Siva carries a snake around his neck.

The family reunion at Mount Kailash would have been a bit chaotic, if not for abstinence by the mounts. Yet they remain, free from all Hunger Games. The devotion of Siva means the end of that hunger, the hunger for all the other material things in the world. 

Even a small thing from Indian mythology has so much to ponder. No one would dare discredit it as a mere coincidence. Each and every deity of the Hindu mythology has many such intriguing and interlinked stories that you really wonder if it can really be the creation of a human at all.

The reality and imagination linked with unadulterated beliefs of many make our mythology, a thing to be admired because of its unparalleled complexity. Once you associate mythology with faith, it takes another level of existence and veneration.

The juxtaposition

An agnostic and a believer is present in every human being’s personality. The believer is always looking for ways to find meaning in randomness by reasoning out many facets of devotion rather than clinging to the material existence of deities. The agnostic part of the brain asks rebelliously, ‘Why wouldn’t I want to know the truth?’ ‘As if we really know the truth of all the world,’ the other parts retort. 

No conclusion

The conflict is between the innate inquisitiveness of the brain to know the hows, whens, wheres and whys of things, and the inherent fear of our mind finding himself haphazard in the world, which never reaches anywhere near a conclusion.

Eventually, as a person evolves and depending on his situations, one side gets stronger, dominating the other side, and still the other part exists. Maybe in some people it eventually leads to the slow erosion of the very faith.

Loss of faith is nothing less than an internal inferno. You don’t survive those catastrophic seismic shifts without any damage.

Balancing act

It is essential to have your own angels and demons than burn in an eternal hell of forlornness, so balancing the conflict is important. Personally, the superficial currents keep drifting me away from casting anchor, and so far I never found the gratification of knowing the truth from anywhere nor have the bliss of complete belief.

I hope I myself will somehow get better with age and win my own hunger game.

sreedevipv16@gmail.com

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 2:25:22 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/open-page/your-own-angels-and-demons/article18956783.ece

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