GOD as I see Him
By the time I was six, I had heard so many sayings on God, such as “God could not be everywhere so He created Mother,” or “God helps those who help themselves.” So at that innocent age, I started believing yes, there is God. I saw God in my mother, father, and my grandparents who lived with us, as all my wishes, however small, were always fulfilled. But soon I started doubting, if they are God, why do they bow down, perform prayers and go to temples? If my parents or grandparents are God, we should have their temples. I also got scoldings or punishments from them when I was naughty or did any mischief or threw tantrums. So definitely they were not God. He will never scold or punish me.
I started questioning the existence of God. Is He really there? If so, where is He? Why can’t I see Him? In school we were taught there are different Gods for different religions but only their forms are different, else God is only One. We were taught & we recited prayers of different religions. At home, my grandmother taught me prayers to sing & rituals to perform. I started enjoying giving a bath to a small idol of a deity, making Him wear new clothes, and giving him bhog, or homemade sweets & lunch, (which was never consumed by Him). At the end it came to us only as ‘Prasad’. It was quite amusing, like playing with your doll, but at the same time after doing all these rituals, my mind became peaceful & calm. There was some magic that was happening.
As I grew older, my belief in God became stronger. Yes, He is there. He is my Creator, my Guardian, my Best Friend, my Everything. I could even confide in Him. So much so that in college when I fell in love, before telling anyone I confided in Him, “If I get married to this boy, I will embark on a pilgrimage.” I started fasting on particular days just to please my God, so that I could marry the boy I loved. And this ‘bribe’ worked. I got married to the prince of my dreams.
Many times, though, my prayers were not answered & I was heartbroken. Then , my grandmother, a firm believer in God, told me, “God has to break you in order to make you.” He will never let you down. If your wish is not fulfilled, your prayers are not answered, may be He has a better plan for you. “If something is destined for you, never in a million years will it be someone else’s.” Now I agree, He had better plans for me.
For years people have wondered what God looks like? Is He a man or woman, a ghost or a material creature? Whoever He is, He has the power to change our minds & our lives. He is capable of doing anything under the Sun, possible or impossible. He helps all of us; He creates, understands us, forgives us for our sins. He is honest & trustworthy. He showers us with what is best for us.
Now at this age when I am over sixty, I still confide in him, ask for the well-being of my loved ones and the world at large. I love Him, hate Him, cry out my heart when I am emotionally or physically in pain, and ask for forgiveness for my wrong doings. I thank Him every single day for what He has given me and if any wish is not fulfilled, as my grandmother explained me, I know He has better plans for me.
The 13th Century Persian Poet Rumi said, “If you find all your roads and paths blocked, He will show you a secret way that no one knows.”
My God has taught me to be true to my heart, be simple, open hearted and open minded, spread love around and thereby find peace & love within.
For me God is faith, God is Love, God is the World, God is everything.