Responding to Skeptics


People sometimes claim that God isn’t real but only a product of our imagination. These people also believe that cultivating devotion or other spiritual practices which awaken the love of the heart are only due to some kind of self hypnosis or auto suggestion. I often wonder about how to give a valid answer or advice here, please help. Thank you.

—Carina , Europe


Dear Carina,

There are several ways to approach this question:

One way is through the actual experience of those who have dedicated their lives to finding God. The result is that these people are certainly happy and have a sense of fulfillment in their lives. You can see this in their eyes and more importantly, how they handle the challenges of life. As the saying goes, “the proof is in the eating of the pudding”.

The other way is the proof that is surfacing from science. The evidence is becoming more apparent in recent research on the brain, that the brain is actually “engineered for divinity”. Some of the research indicates that practices such as meditation, as well devotional attitudes, including faith, have a very real impact on our brains and how we function in this world.

Here is a link to an interview with Dr. Peter Van Houten, from Clarity Magazine Online, in which he talks about the book, written by some doctors, How God Changes Your Brain. I think you’ll find it very inspiring and also helpful in talking to skeptics.

It’s also good to keep in mind that we don’t have to convince others if they are strong in their convictions. Our example of living our lives in God’s grace will shine light into the world around us just as lighthouse radiates its light.

Blessings on your journey.

Nayaswami Pranaba