New Podcast Series

Hi everyone

I am happy to announce the launch of my new podcast series:

Happiness Through Spirituality

For thousands of years, religious philosophies were interpreted in isolation, in cultural or geographical silos. Till only recently, much spiritual literature was yet to be translated to languages understood by the general public; their secrets locked in by the ancient, antiquated languages in which they were received. Now with the advent of globalism and the dawn of the age of information accessibility, there has been no greater time in human history than now, to access, interpret and combine religious philosophies such that one religion can add to the understanding of another, and vice versa. In so doing, the ancient yet eternal truths of the world’s religions can be better understood and implemented so that we can experience the deep, lasting, and profound state of happiness that spirituality is designed to help us achieve. With my fortunate exposure to both Christian and Hindu philosophy, and with deep respect and love, I have combined information and practical tools from the works of arguably some of the greatest spiritual leaders ever to walk the planet to serve the purpose of enhancing my happiness, and now through this podcast, the happiness of others.

If you can benefit from this content, please do join me in this podcast series via the following website:

https://happinessthroughspirituality.buzzsprout.com/

New episodes to be posted regularly.

With loving regards

Natasha Subbiah

Science and Religion

This morning on the day we received the first close up images of Pluto (Yes, I wrote this article a while ago) I read an article that made me realise that people perceive science and religion to be at odds with each other. Scientific minds often think that proving the capabilities of science is in turn discrediting the revelations of religion. In my experience with religion and science, I find that this is often not the case.

There are religious theories that fit very well with what science accepts and there are many religious and spiritual philosophies that are based firmly in logic. Religion however, takes this logic one step further to the realms that science has not yet reached and it is here that we often have to rely on faith.

Let us look at a few examples of religious philosophies that tie into scientific laws and experiences.

Let us look at the law of Karma, concisely explained in the Bible by, “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”. The scientific equivalent, Newton’s third law, states that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. In comparison to Newton’s Third Law, the Law of Karma can be described as: for every action (including thoughts, words and deeds) there is an equal (in energy) and opposite (where the actor becomes the acted upon) reaction. One can see that the physical law (Newton/s) and the spiritual law (Karma) mirrors and therefore validates each other at least to an extent.

However, the law of Karma is much more complex, with the resulting action not necessarily manifesting immediately. Maybe our results are stored as potential energy such as that in a compressed spring, only to be released when our infinitely wise Heavenly Father lifts his finger off the “spring”. The laws that govern the result and timing of the resulting action may not be as easy to uncover by us mere mortals as it would be with our related law of motion. Given that there can be a time lapse before a result is manifest, it is important to note that an impending result can be changed by performing actions with the opposite motive.

The defining differences between the two laws in my mind is that the Law of Karma is governed by motive which is a subtle energy that is difficult to observe and quantify; whereas the Third Law of Motion is governed by physical energies of motion (such as Kinetic and Potential energy) which is more easily observable and quantifiable.

But the main reason the Law of Karma may be difficult to observe is that we may not be able to observe the period over which results of actions are manifest. The world may appear very unjust if the law of Karma is not viewed hand in hand with the philosophy of reincarnation. Hindu’s believe that the fruits of actions will not necessarily materialise in your present life but may only come to pass in future lives if the said soul is reborn. If the soul is not reborn and merges with God, then that souls Karmic debt has been fully repaid. However, people of the Christian faith do not believe in reincarnation but rather in a final judgement after death. Maybe this is where we reap our balance of negative or positive thoughts, words and deeds… ? Whatever the case may be, it is easy for me to believe that the law of karmic energies mirrors the laws of physical energies. Most importantly, this law serves my hope for a divinely built in universal justice system.

Another interesting example that links Science and Spirituality that comes to mind is the big bang theory. Hinduism has spoken of the Universe coming to being with a “big bang” long before science as we know it even began. Hinduism goes further by describing the actual sound of the big bang as Aum or Om. The frequency of this very first vibration still resonates in all parts of the universe according to Hindus. God is believed to be the source of this sound that energised the universe. The Aum is therefore the most basic sound also described as God itself in the form of sound energy and is believed to be the form (in the form of sound) of God Himself. This Big Bang Theory may also be reflected in the Bible if my interpretation is correct with the words: (John 1:1) “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God”.

The most basic shape is worshipped by the Hindu’s as an ellipsoid or Shiva Lingam. The ellipsoid symbolises the duality in nature and also forms a fundamental part in the workings of nature since the planets chart an elliptical course around the sun and electrons in an atom move in an elliptical shape around the central nucleus.

Science and religion can and do support and validate each other. Yes, it is probably impossible for our limited minds to try and fully understand and explain this amazing and complex existence of ours. It has to be enough to just experience the love of God and appreciate that which He reveals to us through science and religion.

I would love to hear of more examples of how Science and Religion relate in your religion. Please drop me a note in the comment section below if you can enlighten us further.

by Natasha Subbiah

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Similarities between Christianity and Hinduism

I make-up one half of an interfaith marriage – with two religions, Christianity and Hinduism, both being practised in our home. I, therefore, have had the good fortune of drawing from Christianity and Hinduism simultaneously and have thus been able to compare the teachings of both religions in parallel. I have witnessed in awe, the splendour of God’s love and power many times, through the beautiful narratives of both religions. I am aware that on a superficial level, Christianity and Hinduism may appear to be polarised, but the more I learn about each religion the more I appreciate that they have many philosophical similarities. From the privileged position of being exposed to both religions, here are some of the reasons I find these two beautiful religions to be comparable.

 

– 1- Value Based

Indeed the most imperative similarity is the emphasis both religions place on morality and good character displayed in virtuous thoughts, words and actions. The scriptures of both religions abound with lessons on how to live a life free from sins such as envy, dishonesty, violence, egoism, sloth and lust; it provides us with ways to practise positive values, all springing from the core value of love. Indeed the topic of love is touched on prominently in both religions, with both love for God and love for our fellow human featuring almost continuously through the scriptures.

 

– 2- Both Religions are Monotheistic (Believe in the Existence of One God)

It is widely accepted that Christianity is a monotheistic religion, which means that Christians believe in one God. But did you know that Hinduism is also monotheistic? This may not seem like the case from a cursory glance at Hindu religious practices but study of the Hindu scriptures would reveal that Hindus practice belief in one ultimate Godhead who is ultimately nameless, formless and genderless. The numerous names and forms that one would observe a Hindu praying to are creations of the one Godhead in whom God manifests. Hindus believe that God has taken on many forms and therefore names, throughout human existence (and even well before that), but that ultimately He is one nameless and formless being; much like the one God who manifests as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit in the Christian Religion.

 

– 3- Belief in Consequences of One’s Actions and the Ability to Redeem Oneself Through Faith in God

“As you sow, so shall you reap.” may well be the most famous idiom that has its roots in the bible. Other examples from the Bible that refer to consequences of one’s actions are as follows:

Jeremiah 17:10 “I the Lord search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.”

James 3:17-18 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of  righteousness.

Galatians 6:7  Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.

The law of Karma described in Hinduism also describes how actions (including words and thoughts) would evoke either negative or positive consequences depending on the action and the intention behind the action.

However, both religions offer opportunities for redemption or absolution of sin through faith in God. This should not be considered to be a deviation from the rules governing consequences. However, faith in God is in itself an action (in the form of thought) that has tremendously powerful positive consequences which can absolve sin when deemed appropriate by God.

 

-4- Belief in the Power of Faith to Achieve the Ultimate Goal

The ultimate goal of Hinduism is described as the complete awareness of one’s union with God, which also signals the end of the cycle of birth and death (reincarnation) for that particular soul. Hinduism maps out a few methods through which one could achieve the ultimate goal. One of them is Bhakthi Yoga which is the path of faith in God. This has been described as the most joyous way of reaching God.

Similarly, Christianity places great emphasis on achieving salvation by having faith in God through Jesus. Most Christians believe that this is the sole path to God.

Hindus are not limited in the form of God they show devotion to and are free to choose even Jesus as that form, or bypass all forms to show devotion to the formless God (although this is said to be a more difficult thing for the mind to achieve).

 

-5- Belief that God is Within Each of Us

Both Christianity and Hinduism subscribe to the belief that God (or a part of God) resides within each of us. Christianity describes the phenomenon as the Holy Spirit. The Hindus describe, arguably, the same phenomenon as the Atma. In both religions there is a spiritual link between the indwelling Holy Spirit or Atma and God. So much so that the Hindu’s often refer to God as Paramatma meaning supreme Atma, probably to elucidate the connection between God and ourselves. Both religions state that the Holy Spirit or Atma and God are in essence one.

 

-6- Belief in Spiritual Benefits Acquired by Submerging in Water

Both Hindus and Christians consider water to be holy. For Hindus, submerging in water at one of India’s holy rivers (with correct intention and regard) is believed to offer spiritual purification. Christians submerge themselves in water during a tradition that is particularly significant to Christians, known as Baptism which signifies purification of the soul and spiritual rebirth, when performed with correct intention.

 

I am certain that there are many more similarities between Christianity and Hinduism and indeed between all the major religions of the world. I hope that contemplating on these similarities would infuse people of different religions with the will to connect with more sincerity, love, sensitivity and respect so that we may exemplify Jesus’ teaching of “love your neighbour as yourself” (Mathew 19:19) and usher in an era of peace on this blessed blue and green planet.

By Natasha Subbiah

For more from me, listen to my podcast, Happiness Through Spirituality: https://happinessthroughspirituality.buzzsprout.com/

or follow Unity Mama’s Facebook Page.