Imagine, for a moment, that you are God.
In the beginning, there was only you (although it is not even right to speak of a “beginning” since you have always been, but for the sake of easy discussion, let’s just call that certain point in time the “beginning”).
Imagine the vastness of the universe, the multitudes of stars and galaxies that we have discovered in our lifetime — all of those are but a tip of your fingernail, or a single hairstrand of your being. But at this point of our imagination, none of those exist yet. Only you exist. There is no here or there, no light nor dark, no good nor evil, nor heaven nor hell.
There is only you. You are everything and everything is you — the ultimate state of perfection.
But perfection is quite static, and boring. Think about it. What do you do when you have everything you need or want, when you are already everything you desire to be? There is nothing more to strive for, nothing new to experience, nothing exciting to look forward to.
In fact, you do not even experience yourself as God, the creator, the most powerful, intelligent, benevolent and-whatever-superlative-you-can-think-of being in the universe, because there is no universe.
There is just you. Only you.
And so you, as God, find yourself in this state of mind. You know you are God and you can happily live out the rest of eternity as this static thing, forever existing as yourself, but you lack that experience of being God.
One cannot fully appreciate the light unless one has experienced darkness, one cannot appreciate good unless one has experienced evil. There is no experience of being “here” unless there is also a place called “not-here” or “there” or somewhere else. In the same way, you know that you are God and that you are more powerful than…well, what else is there? So in order for you to experience being God, there must be in existence things which are Not-God. But how can that be since you are everything and everything is you?
Bang! The big idea hits you and you set your grand plan into motion. You break off a tiny piece of you, that tip of your fingernail, and make it forget that it is a part of you. You make it forget that it is in fact, you. So the universe is born and there is now a “there” to your “here.”
But you do not forget. In fact, you get to experience everything that is going on in that part of you that is Not-You — and there certainly is a lot to experience — wealth, poverty, greed, love, hate, anger, happiness, hunger, compassion, avarice, kindness, cruelty, awe, wonder, and so on. Everything that Not-You experiences is your experience regardless if Not-You decides to worship you, to deny your existence or to ignore you altogether. It doesn’t matter because in the end, Not-You returns to you and remembers and you can start the cycle again.
Big Bang. Big Crunch. Breathe in. Breathe out. Inhale. Exhale.
No heaven. No hell. There is only the eternal breath of God.
Originally published in Sunstar Davao.