There is usually this controversy or thought in many religions/traditions that physical representation of God or deities – commonly termed “Idol Worship” – is blasphemous or looked down upon (Islam and Arya Samaj, for example, are two such traditions).
– But is the physical representation any different from mental representation?
– Is seeing any different from imagining?
– Do eyes see or is it the brain?
These are important questions. We know that eyes are just the “front-end” (using IT terminology) if you will, and brain (nerves and lobes) are the “back-end” in the process of seeing. The input into this process was always deemed to be an external stimulus. However, if brain could conjure up images without the help of an external stimulus, then it would mean that the creation is actually in our minds (not the physical locii of the lobes and nerves). Well, here is an interesting case of a person who was blind from childhood who PAINTS! Not just with great understanding of light effects but also perspective in his paintings. In fact he was put to test in Florence, Italy to test his understanding of “perspective” in his drawing and he came off fine. (Tip from Vidhi, a Drishtikone reader)
When put under an MRI, and asked to draw, his brain lit up in areas of visual cognition while he was imagining things to draw. Something that was hitherto said to only happen in sighted people.
So, is physical representation important or is the imagination and really the thought itself the beginning of the blasphemy associated with Idol Worship? The thought of God is the origin of a picture painted or Idol made of God. One takes that thought and conjures up reams and reams of paper called scriptures asserting holiness and another takes the Idol and sings thousands of songs to it asserting commune. Both criticize the other. What is the difference?
To uphold thought (and therefore knowledge) at a higher plane than Idol Worship or artistic rendition to that thought is, in my humble opinion, an exercise in egotistic one-up-manship. Nothing more. Such people have neither understood the mechanism of thought-to-creation process nor the truth about “God” and Its creation.
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