‘Viswaroopam’ – the Movie in Controversy ? – has generated lot of self-thought among the curious minded and it has occupied significant space in leading newspapers, media and telecast channels. Recently, on one of the telecast news channels, I was listening to the Actor Kamal Haasan about his plight in trying to get clearance and lifting of ban on the movie in Tamil Nadu state. Kamal Haasan gets exasperated midway and says, “I am Godless. I am only an Artist. Why do you not let me and my movie alone from all this controversy ?”
What is the state of being Godless ?
It has been observed that we constantly seek shelter of religious books, man-made idols, self-appointed godmen, and lop-sided philosophic thoughts – to prove our point of view. God is an illusion to most seekers and nobody has been able to explain God’s existence because it is beyond human understanding. Words Fail to explain. Human emotions are insufficient to gauge the depth of His existence. Thoughts do not proceed ahead to complete the search. Intellect cannot reason out beyond logic and reasoning power. Physical body becomes an hindrance in search of God due to its inherent limitation, being bounded by time and space. In such conditions, several seekers give up and turn into being Atheists – because they feel betrayed and their expectations are not fulfilled. Some of the seekers even berate God and blame their failures in life as resultant of the curse of God etc.
Atheism is the absence of belief in gods ; Godlessness is the absence of gods and is generally defined as not recognizing or not worshiping any gods. Godlessness need not deny the existence of gods, but it does dismiss their importance in our lives. It’s possible to argue that godlessness and secularism are substantially the same, at least on a practical level. However, they mean different things. Whereas godlessness is the absence of gods, secularism is the absence of religion. It is the varied interpretation of God by the ‘so called’ pious religious leaders, differing from each other – that is causing havoc in the society. Personally I know that God exists within us or through us or by us or with us. Most seekers do not know their own individual selves fully, let alone knowing God and that is the fallacy causing lack of understanding among different faiths or beliefs.
To lead a life or to complete the embarked journey of life to its logical end – one needs self-belief, faith on tested methodology and self-confidence to complete the process. Otherwise it becomes difficult to carry on. Religion shows us the way of life. This aspect has been explained beautifully through a video by Swami Chinmayananda that is added here at the end of this post. Religion serves as a doctrine or a learned personal ‘Guide’ who has based his expertise on some past experience or the universal truth. Now, it is not possible to decipher and find the source of these teachings necessarily at all times. Because it is not within our capability to do so. This is what the Un-known is all about. Truth being Un-known, it creates a fear of it ; builds reverence towards it ; and develops lasting faith in it. Truth is existence. Truth cannot be challenged. We can only seek to know Truth.
So when Kamal Haasan says, he is Godless – he requests the concerned spiritual authorities to not mix individual interpretations of various faiths with Art that is basically Godless. In fact, I feel even politics, community service, science, invention, technology should be Godless. Let us not take advantage of others’ weaknesses and exploit them in the name of God. India is a unique and secular nation comprising co-existence of multi-faith (practicing), multi-linguistic (speaking), multi-cultural(believing) youth population. There is no other nation like her in the entire world. Let us not fragment her or even attempt to fragment her. No one has succeeded in doing so ! Neither the British colonial rulers could do in the past nor any of the fanatic terrorist groups of recent times !!
– Hinduism is a Religion and Way of Life !