I am a atheist for my grandma but, I am a devotee of no god for myself. The concept of faith in god for me always dangled at the edge of fear of existing of evil. Those too at night times at most.
When I was growing up, the people going to temples and offering something in order to gain something didn’t seem correct to my logics. Their deal-making prayers that I have been watching were never heartfelt. But yet, they believe themselves the greatest devotees of him/her.
I was even pretty confused with the people dividing the god into two species male and female. Particularly, in a religion like Hindu, the number of gods count equals to the end of numbers. It is good to worship those with great and divine qualities and Indians have a custom of this since ages. That is why many kings are still worshipped as gods in the country and the count has no ending number.
I have a grandmother from my mother’s side and she is the oldest of our family. She knew all the Indian customs and traditions of doing the events and worships. She is the first guide of our families and neighbours’ in every family activity. I once happen to visit her. This is how our conversation went on,
“How are you granny? how is your health?”
“I’m fine my prince charm. Are you not eating well these days?”
Mom’s and their mothers are always that caring to say it even to a 200 pound grandson.
“Yes, I am. I am good. You don’t worry. I am even going to gym these days.”
“Gym!!? What is it? Another tuition?”
“No granny, It’s like going for walking in the morning.”
Meanwhile a neighbour housewife came to take advice for her chicken pox affected little daughter. My granny started her lessons of wisdom to her. She was saying,
“Make a bed of neem leaves. Make small marbles of neem leaves paste and give her all three times a day. Only use neem plants to scratch the spots.”
and when she was about to leave noting all the instructions in her brain, my granny left her last tip of wisdom.
“..and..” granny continued, “Never clean the room till the goddess goes away.” touching her cheeks with her palms. The neighbour housewife followed her, touched her cheeks and left.
“Granny!! Goddess you mean?” I spoke after listening to their conversation all along interestingly.
“Yes!! Smallpox is a goddess. It is good to have her on, once at least in life time.”
“But, we should keep the surroundings clean nah!”, I said.
“No! We should not! If we keep the surroundings clean, the goddess will like the place and stay forever.”
What a logic! That stroke my senses like a lightening from the silent sky.
“So, whose goddess is she?”
“Who else’s? Ours only!”, Hindu’s she meant.
“So, you mean our goddess will not affect the muslims and Christians, right?”
Granny sensed my sarcasm. With a smiley face, “why won’t they get? They will get affected too.” She said it smiling at my atheism.
“But, she is our only god right? The exclusive one? Christians have Jesus and Muslims have Allah. Oh!! That means Christians will have Mother Mary, isn’t it?”
She understood that I was teasing her. She had no answer of course to give back. She just waved her hand down and turned her face aside.