Over several decades of pursuing deeper spiritual understanding, I have encountered several variations of these myths…
Myth #1: God does not exist, there is no plan, everything happens by accident
This is raw atheism, at its simplest, but randomness is a myth.
Myth #2: Actually nothing exists, you are imagining your existence, all is VOID
This is another form of slightly more subtle atheism, but nothingness is also a myth.
Myth #3: I don’t know if God exists, so I’m on the fence
This is a legitimate stance for someone starting out on their spiritual journey, but if one doesn’t go past this stage, then likely one is not too serious about the spiritual quest.
Myth #4: I know God exists, but God can’t possibly be a person, because persons have imperfections, so God is a “Perfect Impersonal Force”
Myth #5: God is “everything”, I am God, you are God, we are all God
These myths, #4 and #5 are complex and sophisticated, and deserve their own posts, though books upon books have been written on this subject.
Myth #6: I am God, so you all follow Me!
Beware of these charlatans. Stay away from them!
Myth #7: Your God is a false God, my God is the real One…
Yes, even though there have been and will be many many false gods (see myth #6 above), for the most part this is the cause of much strife in the world, with one sectarian religion fighting another sectarian religion. There are extremist Muslims, extremist Christians, Extremist Jews, Extremist Hindus, Extremist Bahai’s, Extremist Buddhists… and Extremist Sikhs… the list goes on and on. The unfortunate truth is that all these extremists are, even with the definitions of their own scriptures, atheists in disguise – materialism divides, spirituality unites. As long as we can’t rise to see the one grain of truth in other traditions, so long should we tolerate them. If my spiritual tradition doesn’t teach me that wherever there is life, there is the presence of God’s potency, and doesn’t teach me to see with equal vision all beings, it is likely I may be following one such sectarian religion!
All of these myths above are one form or another form of atheism. I have been at various times in my life, been tripped up with one or more of these myths. So now, I am very careful to avoid any variants of these.
- असत्यमप्रतिष्ठं ते जगदाहुरनीश्वरम् ।अपरस्परसंभूतं किमन्यत्कामहैतुकम् ॥ १६.८ ॥asatyam apratiṣṭhaṁ te
jagad āhur anīśvaram
kim anyat kāma-haitukamThey say that this world is unreal, with no foundation, no God in control. They say it is produced of sex desire and has no cause other than lust. BG 16.8 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/16/8/
- TEXT BG 16.9:
- Following such conclusions, the demoniac, who are lost to themselves and who have no intelligence, engage in unbeneficial, horrible works meant to destroy the world.
- TEXT BG 16.10:
- Taking shelter of insatiable lust and absorbed in the conceit of pride and false prestige, the demoniac, thus illusioned, are always sworn to unclean work, attracted by the impermanent.
- TEXTS BG 16.11-12:
- They believe that to gratify the senses is the prime necessity of human civilization. Thus until the end of life their anxiety is immeasurable. Bound by a network of hundreds of thousands of desires and absorbed in lust and anger, they secure money by illegal means for sense gratification.
- TEXTS BG 16.13-15:
- The demoniac person thinks: “So much wealth do I have today, and I will gain more according to my schemes. So much is mine now, and it will increase in the future, more and more. He is my enemy, and I have killed him, and my other enemies will also be killed. I am the lord of everything. I am the enjoyer. I am perfect, powerful and happy. I am the richest man, surrounded by aristocratic relatives. There is none so powerful and happy as I am. I shall perform sacrifices, I shall give some charity, and thus I shall rejoice.” In this way, such persons are deluded by ignorance.
- TEXT BG 9.11:
- Fools deride Me when I descend in the human form. They do not know My transcendental nature as the Supreme Lord of all that be.
- TEXT BG 9.12:
- Those who are thus bewildered are attracted by demonic and atheistic views. In that deluded condition, their hopes for liberation, their fruitive activities, and their culture of knowledge are all defeated.वदन्ति तत्तत्त्वविदस्तत्त्वं यज्ज्ञानमद्वयम्ब्रह्मेति परमात्मेति भगवानिति शब्द्यते ॥ १.२.११ ॥vadanti tat tattva-vidas
tattvaṁ yaj jñānam advayam
bhagavān iti śabdyateLearned transcendentalists who know the Absolute Truth call this nondual substance Brahman, Paramātmā or Bhagavān. https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/1/2/11/