Concepts of God

Interesting thoughts on how people perceive and understand divinity. Depending upon where people are in their own development influences how they see and understand God or gods, or whether even they believe in any god at all.

“To him who has not the power of God, the power of God does not exist. To him who perceives the presence of God, God exists, and to him his existence cannot be disputed away. The ignorant cannot be made to realise the existence of knowledge unless he becomes knowing; those who know cannot have their knowledge reasoned away. The caricatures of gods set up by the various churches as representations of the only true God are merely attempts to describe that which cannot be described. As every man has a highest ideal (a god) of his own, which is a symbol of his aspirations, so every church has its peculiar god, who is an outgrowth or a product of evolution of the ideal necessities of that collective body called a church. They are all true gods to them, because they temporarily answer their needs, and as the requirements of the church change, so change their gods; old gods are discarded and new ones put into their places. The god of the Christian differs from that of the Jews, and the Christian god of the nineteenth century is very different from the one that lived at the time of Torquemada and Peter Arbues, and was pleased with torture and Autos da Fé. As long as men are imperfect their gods will be imperfect; as they become more perfect their gods will grow in perfection, and when all men are equally perfect they will all have the same perfect ‘God,’ the same highest spiritual ideal recognised alike by science and by religion as being divinity in humanity; because there can be only one supreme ideal, one absolute Truth, whose realisation is Wisdom, whose manifestation is power expressed in Nature, and whose most perfect expression is ideal Man.”

~ Franz Hartmann, M.D.

Source: Magic: Black and White (1888), page 83.

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