On the Divinity of God

O

Do you know what the Divinity of God is?
— Monique Shatae on Quora

Yes. And I will try to explain.

You look out at the world of objects and see their forms: sounds, shapes, sensations and so forth. You say that you are ‘sensing’ or ‘perceiving’ the objects. You, the observer, or pure subject are looking outwards towards a stream of sense data coming towards you. All the sense data — such as light, sound and sensations — that you ever perceive are travelling towards you, and you are looking out towards them. It is this duality: ‘I’, consciousness looking out at what is coming in that characterises sensory perception and gives rise to the appearance of existence.

God does not ‘exist’ because God is not able to be sensed. God is not a thing. God is not an object that can be detected by light or sound or any other sensation, but rather is the the vast nothing, void or being behind everything you are perceiving. So, God is the stillness and silence behind your senses and God is the being (the nothing) behind the subject ‘I’ in you. God is your pure being.

The nothing that is God, therefore, can’t be perceived by attending to sense data. It is the very act of looking out against the flow of sense data that is coming in that makes you see objects. But God is not an object.

So to find God, one needs to attend to the nothing rather than the something; that is, attend to the stillness behind movement, the silence behind sounds, the black behind all light, the nothing inside you where the ‘I’ is looking from.

This takes practise, because we are so used to looking at the something (at objects) that when we start to look at nothing we get bored or impatient and want to get back to looking at something again. No wonder we do not know God!

So if looking out against sense data can be called ‘perceiving’ what do we call the act of consciously attending to the nothing? It has a name… it is called divining. That term is also used by water diviners and psychics who claim to divine the future. In both cases they are attempting to divine what cannot be sensed. To divine, then, can be understood to mean the act of reaching for that which cannot be sensed.

The individual who truly reaches for God turns away from sense objects and focuses their attention on the nothing, within and without. They aim to look past the things of the world and themselves and enter ‘The Cloud of Unknowing’, so they are truly divining. But unlike the water diviner or the psychic, they are not seeking things (water or knowledge of the future). They are divining the very essence of the nothing which is behind everything: God.

As God is found through the act of divining, it is not surprising that God is known as the divinity, which means ‘the state of being divine’. Seekers of God find that the subject they call “I” is itself nothing without objects, so “I” the first person singular, when divining deeply, disappear in union with the divine. In those moments existence disappears, and there is no duality. That nothing is pure being.

Now this reality is not something reserved for the mystics, and it is not something you have to take anyones word for, because you regularly pass into this union and become one with the divine. You do it every night, during deep dreamless sleep. And you love it. If anyone tries to wake you when you are in that state you will know that you want to get back to it.

Why? Why do we love being in deep dreamless sleep — in a state of non-existence?

We love it because it’s divine… Deep dreamless sleep is divine, isn’t it?

So everybody already knows the divine, but it’s an unconscious knowledge. The purpose of practises such as contemplation or meditation is to enter the divine consciously.

I have done it. So, yes, I know what the divinity of God is.


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Keir Watson

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