This week we focused on the second of the two main themes of Part 2 of the film “The Master of the Carriage” - the Universe, and our place in it.
We started by looking at why it is worthwhile, from a spiritual point of view, to study and try to understand the universe. Two members of the group described vivid experiences of looking up at the night sky on a clear night and feeling the vastness of the universe.
After a brief maths lesson from the group taker, we watched the short (9-minute) film “Powers of Ten”. (http://www.powersof10.com/film)
The following comments and questions were raised:
- “Watching this and also looking up into the night sky makes me feel very small.” Someone responded “Is it really you who are feeling small, or is it just the collection of day to day worries and concerns which habitually occupy your consciousness that are seen to be tiny and trivial?”
- “Why does the universe exist? What is the point of life?” One response was “Does it need to have a purpose?” Another pointed out there may be confusion between ‘reason for existing’ and ‘cause’. The universe doesn’t need a reason for existing – it just is. But things in it have causes.
- “I can see how when we become identified and our world shrinks, we lose degrees of freedom and become subject to a larger number of laws”
- “I find the concept of ‘as above, so below’ very helpful, because I can then see that this whole group has an equivalent within me, as does the Study Society, as does the nation etc. It makes it easier to come to terms with the situation when opposition and disagreements arise.”
- “It shows us that Param-Atman is in everyone”