“... if God spoke directly to your face and said, ‘I command that you be happy in the world, as long as you live.’ What would you do then?”
That’s one of the questions that has remained with me ever since I read Richard Bach’s Illusions as a twenty year-old man. It remained somewhere within me without affecting me really in any significant way. Later on, as a teacher, I used it many times in the class for conveying certain messages effectively.
Disclaimer: I don’t believe in God.
But I don’t question anyone’s faith. What I question is the exploitation of people in the name of gods and faith. I have seen many people drawing the much needed psychological (call it spiritual, if you prefer) sustenance from their religious faith. I’d be the last person to take away such sustenance from anyone.
There are times when I felt that religious faith would be a blessing. It can be a free panacea for certain ills that plague mankind in general and individuals in unique ways. I’m unable to get that blessing. My extremely critical mind relies heavily on logic and the rational faculty which refuses to condescend.
It dreams much, however. Bach’s question is one of the recurring motifs in my dreams. This Sunday, sitting at home watching the winter sunshine in the sprawling playgrounds outside the staff quarters where I reside I toyed with the question yet again.
If God appeared and told me, ‘I command you to write a novel,’ wouldn’t I quit my lassitude and spin out the tale weaving together the warp and the weft lying higgledy-piggledy in the loom of my mind?
No doubt, I would.
Why am I waiting for God to come with the command?
Anybody would be an achiever if God came with some such command. God won’t come. The fact is the command is already given. To each one of us. If only we care to listen, it would be palpable.
Where there is a dream, there is also the skill. Or, in the words of Richard Bach, “You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it true. You may have to work for it, however.”