Hlatky argues that a logical belief in a conscious original cause – God – is possible, that is, a belief that is based on and tallies with our total current experience of life (see 11 below). In other words, he challenges the usual stance of blind belief or blind faith in relation to notions of God.
Hlatky’s hypothesis of the original cause is different from all other historically known monotheisms. The logical basis for the assertions that follow and for the criticisms of other monotheisms, pantheisms and atheistic views are put forward in Understanding Reality (we would refer the reader in particular to chapter 1 and the discussion about axioms in Dialogue 4) and in the other material referred to above.
Features of Hlatky’s notion of God:
- God is the unchangeably conscious, permanent, concrete whole, invisible behind creation. We are parts of that whole and as such are unchangeably conscious, permanent and concrete like God. Thus God doesn’t create us; he creates only our bodies in creation, to which we connect.
- God has a need to be understood and thereby loved. [UR p.24 Please note: in all links to Understanding Reality the extent of the relevant passage is indicated by black font. Page numbers are given for those who have a copy of the book.]
- If he is to meet this need, God must make himself known in some way to the parts so that they can understand him. It is through creation that God seeks to do this.
- The meaning of our life as humans is to make sense of God’s efforts to make himself understood and loved in this way, that is, through creation. So our need is to understand the whole reality. In doing that, we also understand not just God, but one another too.
- God, in his position as the whole, is the sole creator and maintainer of creation. But God cannot create anything permanent, only activity [UR p.16] – hence the changeability of creation. But this changeability must be viewed against the invisible background of the unchangeable, original conscious whole (with its conscious parts).
- God does not intervene in creation on a particular basis. But he maintains the whole creation and seeks to make himself known, indirectly, through it.
- God creates within himself.
- Therefore, it is not possible to meet or experience God directly, only indirectly through his ongoing activity with which we are faced every day.
- As parts of the concrete whole (God), we do not have any perspective on our original situation: we have no possibility of experiencing and, therefore, no possibility of understanding. For that we need to connect to a human body in creation, where our experiences can lead us to such an understanding.
- The conscious part that we are does not develop: it remains unchangeably what it is. So human beings are all basically 100% alike in having this same identity: that of conscious original parts of the conscious original whole, with the need to understand the whole and thereby experience love, mutuality, both in relation to the whole and to each other. This is in spite of the fact that on the surface we are all 100% unlike.
- Hlatky believed that anyone can arrive at his hypothesis on the basis of their own total experience of life, and then check it or test it on that same basis [UR p.128]. Because he regarded his hypothesis as reality-based in this way, he had no interest in setting himself up as an authority. Reality is the authority to which we are all subject [UR p.72]. And our total current experience of reality is what we should base our philosophical thinking on (for a lengthy elaboration of this point, see UR pp.140-2).