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Natural disasters or acts of God?

Nature, like time, is a great leveller. For all the human conceit about their power over nature, disasters continue to occur and shake up the human world through their destructive power.

Disasters–man-made or natural–always tend to evoke multiple human responses. There is shock, a sense of awe, despair, incredulity and questions about why such disasters occur. For sheer power nature has no rival. Within a few minutes any one of nature’s elements can erase all trace of life, property and habitation in any place.

The Indian Ocean tsunami nine years ago and the one two years ago in Japan, frequent earthquakes in various parts of the world and the recent Uttarakhand disaster brought to fore the magnitude of the destructive power of nature.

Once rare, disasters occur more frequently now. When a disaster occurs, it creates quite a buzz in various quarters about the cause and management of disasters. Some God-fearing people have a simplistic and fatalist view about disasters.

Seeing the enormity of a disaster like the tsunami or the Uttarakhand floods, human beings call it an “act of God” – for what other agency could manifest such power at such a scale? When humans fail to comprehend the reasons for such suffering they tend to blame God. Or else they term it as fate or divine justice. Further, they believe that only God can prevent such calamities in future and that their prayers would help them appease God and save them from His wrath.

Blaming God for all disasters is, in a way, evasion of our responsibilities towards nature and humanity as a whole. Even when we do rationalise the causes in scientific terms we fail to comprehend such events holistically and formulate half-baked theories based on our skewed thinking.

Our thoughts, emotions and actions send out positive or negative vibrations around us, affecting the energies of nature.

God does not control elements of nature. Nature is basically a complex web of energy, and energy can neither be created nor destroyed. Natural calamities and other phenomena occur as per the natural order in which all elements and energy interact with each other. Science has explained how everything in the material world functions.

For long, nature has been bearing a ruthless onslaught by avaricious humans on its vital resources. Such over-exploitation has resulted in grave ecological imbalances which have brought the world to the brink of unpredictable disasters.

God does not create storms, earthquakes or other mishaps to punish us. These are all related to human actions. The macrocosm of the universe with the various elements of nature is constantly influenced by the microcosm of human nature.

Our thoughts, emotions and actions send out positive or negative vibrations around us, affecting the energies of nature. In order to mitigate disasters and the suffering that follows any disaster, we have to disconnect from the source of suffering.

The root cause of all suffering and its remedy are spiritual. It is the vices in human souls that lead them to sinful actions and suffering.

We are all souls acting through our body. Any action or thought which violates our innate and original nature of peace, love and purity is bound to pollute and cause destruction at the micro or macro levels. Hence, we need to conquer these vices in order to deal with any kind of suffering.

God masterminds world transformation through His wisdom and love. He guides and inspires us but does not meddle in our karma. He supports us in our spiritual endeavours but does not influence or enforce our judgements and decisions regarding our worldly life.

He divinises our intellect through His wisdom and power so that we can create a harmonious relationship with nature. Even the elements of nature are purified by the divine plan of God. When we become viceless and pure, nature will also serve us in the best way.

Dadi Janki

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