WHAT IS GOD AND THE SELF ACCORDING TO SOME OF THE GREATEST PHILOSOPHERS

August 17, 2018

In the 21st century the word "philosophy" is defined in a different from its original meaning way. Philosophy is as old as man, for it is inherent in every human. This great science represents the desire and striving of the individual to search for answers on questions which could not be received through a simple observation of the world with a naked eye. The tools which are inherent to everyone and which we use to "exercise" philosophy are reason, imagination and intuition. This science deals with aspects such as:

- Psychology, which studies the human mentality, or in other words - the thoughts and emotions.
- Metaphysics, which deals with all abstract ideas, such as cosmology.
- Theology, which deals with the meaning of "what is to be".
- Ethics, or the study of human morality.
- Logic, which studies the rational thinking of man.
- Individual character and responsibility, which tries to define  "good" and "bad".
- Epistemology, which deals with the concept of "knowledge" and its possibility (or lack of such) to exist as an absolute form.


PHILOSOPHY, MAN AND GOD

Philosophy was considered "the science of all sciences" during the time of the great greek thinkers and that is of no coincidence. When one thinks about hard questions such as "What is mind? What is consciousness and why does it exist at all? Where did it all began and where does it end?, it becomes a necessity for man to dive deeper into the studies of the sub-sciences, namely physics, chemistry, mathematics and biology, for they are tools that contribute greatly to the content of information which one uses to think in the fields of philosophy. Philosophy was also, and still is, considered as the key one uses to attain enlightenment by deep understanding of the self. For thousands of years various great philosophers, who would be classified as spiritual teachers nowadays, have been passing on their teachings and ideas. They led to the creation of various schools and sub-teachings. Yet still all great philosophical ideas, theories and opinions share a few common mysteries. Two of them are associated with the human nature and the source of everything, or in other words - "God". The philosophical opinions and thoughts of Immanuel Kant and Gottfried Leibniz threw a bright light on those two topics during their period. 

KANT AND LEIBNIZ ON GOD AND THE SELF

According to Kant's philosophy, man is composed of Mind and Matter. The mind, according to him, is a coordinator of all perceptions, which on the other hand are product of our 5 material senses. The Mind groups and categorizes those perceptions and creates a meaningful individual and common reality for its individual. Gottfried Leibniz had spent a lot of time thinking on an even harder philosophical topic - the nature of Creation. Leibniz used the term "Monad" (a source of complete oneness) to describe his opinion. According to him, the universe is made up from infinite number of separate monadistic units that create everything in it. A more modern explanation would be to consider those "monadistic units" as a type of particles which have the capability to create everything material and non-material (such as the mind). Even though Leibniz lived during the 17th century, he reached a conclusion which is more or less in unison with what quantum physics had discovered centuries later - that everything is made of vibrations and our thoughts have their own vibrational frequencies. Leibniz considers God to be the first and greatest Monad and that the human soul (which is the essence of the material body) to be an awakened individual monad made up from those particles which, when residing in the lower kingdoms of Creation, is chained by the material body and pulled to fulfill its irrational desires, habits, instincts and impulses.


SPINOZA'S VIEW

Baruch Spinoza expressed a similar opinion regarding the divine nature. According to him, God is a substance absolutely self-existent and devoid of any need to be completed, perfect and intelligible, for it is all those things by itself and it will always be, for it is eternal. According to Spinoza's philosophy, man is gifted with the most divine instrument through which he can know God - reason. Hermes Trismegistus, namely the most influential and mysterious figure in the fields of philosophy, teached that "The All" can never be known for everything exists within it, otherwise it wouldn't be "The All". All forms of matter, consciousness and mind exist within "The All", even time and space itself do too. In order for one to know the nature of something, he has to exist outside of it, therefore the task of knowing the nature of God becomes impossible. The sanskrit sources of hindu philosophy tell us that everyone who claims to know the nature of God is not talking about God due to the same reason stated above. Other great philosophers share an opinion which is in coherence with today's sub-sciences - that matter can be dissolved into infinitely small units, which eventually become incorporeal (such as the mind and consciousness) and reach their source, or "God". We know today that in theory this is correct, but it does not subject to experimentation, for the experiment would be only in the boundaries of the material world (subatomic particles).

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