Hindu Monism Essay
According to Hindu Monism “the universe is the four-dimensional projection of God”. This means that everything in the universe like the living and non-living things such as the trees, animals, matter and all human beings are just a visible manifestation of God ( or Brahman as the Hindus call him). In other words “all in the universe is one with God”. God is called the ultimate reality (UR ) while the universe is called the virtual reality (VR)( The Hindu Concept, 2007,p.5).
To understand this “all in one concept” of Monism, take for example a goldsmith who makes earrings, necklace and bracelets. This jewelry consists of three different material forms: earrings, necklace and bracelet but all three are made of only one element which is gold. In like manner, in the universe can be found all different visible physical forms of trees, birds, land, humans but all are a projection of God.
This kind of belief is very much in contrast to the western belief of creation where God created the universe, so that God is separate from the universe or His creation. In Monism, God is not separate from the universe but that the universe is part of Him. If such Monist belief happens to be prevalent in 21st America, many of its beliefs and practices will change. Among them are the following:
Impact monism might have on current government policies, laws, programs, and grants
In Monism there is no distinction between good and evil for both had no final reality
1. Murders, thefts, kidnapping are not considered bad acts in Monism and therefore not subject to criminal liability. Punishment of offenders presupposes that a bad act is committed, but if there is nothing bad in Monism then there is no act to punish. Courts would be non-existent.
2. Debatable moral issues such as abortion, same sex marriage, cloning and homosexuality will no longer become a problem for American lawmakers for it will automatically become an acceptable practice
3. Government programs will be more devoted to environmental and world preservation for humans are divinely connected to it
4. No law enforcements would be present for there is no right and wrong to enforce or punish
5. Government funding will be devoted more to yoga, transcendental meditation, hypnotism, and other mystical activities in order to achieve self-actualization or self-awareness. Self-awareness is the aim of a Monist, which is to achieve union with Brahman.
6. Government will no longer worry itself with immigration policies for all men are “one” so they can practically go and live to any places they want
7. There would be no regulation or censorship in movies for anything to be watch is neither right nor wrong. There is no absolute truth to base whether “sexually stimulating” films are wrong
8. There would be no active pursuit against terrorism for whatever these bad guys are doing is just ultimately in harmony with the oneness of the universe and with the ultimately reality
9. Education will be hard for there is no absolute reality to teach. The Government therefore may not provide much for education funding except in those educational programs that seeks to promote Monist beliefs.
Influence of changed worldview on non-governmental institutions, such as religious groups, social units, the means of entertainment and recreation
10. The concept of a personal God, worthy to worship, will disappear. The Bible will cease to become the inerrant word of God. God will have none of the human-like qualities of love; compassion and mercy for such attributes are unreal. God will be relegated only as time/energy or space.
11. Every religion is acceptable since ultimately all religion will lead to the one ultimate reality: God.
Each religion then will not devote itself to converting other groups. There would be no missionary work. No religion will be persecuted for its belief.
12. There would be no concept of hell or heaven for there is no wrong or right to be punished or rewarded in the after life. Therefore man will not feel any guilt for wrong deeds nor will he feel any moral responsibility
13. Family unit will break down for the bond that holds it together: love, fidelity, faithfulness are no longer real, such traits are not worth pursuing anymore
14. Pornography, sexually stimulating films can be the means of entertainment for it is not wrong or shameful anymore to watch them
Values would have to be adjusted or discarded
15. There is no absolute truth in Monism. Only God is real therefore the values of morality will be discarded
16. Good traits such as love, mercy, and compassion will no longer be relevant; this is unreal attributes.
17. Personal moral responsibility will cease for man will think that as a divine being what he does is only in line to his divine nature although he would feel responsible for keeping in harmony with the surrounding around him for he is “one” with them
18. The development of talent or human personality will no longer be attractive for in fact, they just hinder man’s self-actualization and therefore blocked union with the ultimate reality
19. Personal concept of right and wrong will cease. He has the freedom to do whatever he wants
20. Personal happiness are not to be pursued anymore for in fact it is unreal. In Monism blissfulness is more sought after and the reason for such a feeling is non-existent; meaning one feels blissful for no reason at all. This is because in Monism, cause and effect is not real.
21. There is no compelling thought to make peace with God or to ask for forgiveness for God as the Americans widely knew him is non-existent in Monism. In fact, man is his own God for he is the visible projection of God.
Changes in Everyday life routines and practices
22. Prayer will no longer be a part of his daily routine. Man will no longer be asking God to help or guide him. He is his own God so he can figure things out for himself
23. Personal dreams, desires and ambition are just an illusion. So in his daily life, he will not be devoting much of his time pursuing them as many Americans do today
24. Mysticism, yoga, hypnotism, etc will have a part in his daily life for they are a key to his ultimate “divine” realization
25. Making others happy will not be his main daily preoccupation for such pursuits have no relevance. Whatever he does is not motivated then in making others happy.
Understanding and analyzing the effect of Monism in American belief and practices today had been a challenging one for me. I find it rather hard to believe that since only God is the ultimate reality all else then are not real but an illusion. Furthermore, bad and good had no final real significance. But how can murder, theft, kidnapping, etc. be not real? They surely have real consequences as far as I can see. When a person is murdered he actually dies and is seen no more.
The same thing happens when one does good deeds, it results to positive consequences. Perhaps Monism had a different concept of what reality really is. For me, a thing or person is real when I can actually touch or see him and similarly a thing is not real when I cannot see or touch him. In relation to truths, a concept is real or true when it can actually be proven although proving the existence of God may be hard for some.
For me the absence of the distinction between right and wrong is problematic for a society. When there is no right and wrong then there would be chaos, although I assume that if one is a devote Monish then what one does to him (like someone steal his wallet from him)will not matter for any change in the universe ( like the lose of his wallet) he will consider to be in harmony with the ultimate reality.
I also encounter difficulty in understanding that as an ultimate reality, God in Monism does not have any moral absolute truths. There is no evil and there is no good which means to say that every act is permissible. Such a condition will practically change every government laws in the world.