For almost as long as they've existed, religion and science have been at war. (There was an era when science was in its infancy - when the Earth was the center of all and archeology had not shed light on humanity's ancient origins so the Genesis creation myth could be taken not as myth but as fact and with a straight face - that the two pursuits did happily coexist, but that time was brief and long forgotten.)
For religion's blind faith as truth, science poses hard evidence, rigorously measured, tested and established as fact. And because it has never been possible to prove the existence of God, since what science cannot measure it cannot prove, science and religion would seem doomed to be forever at odds. But a new scientific theory is emerging, proposed by a small coterie of elite scientists and other thinkers, which bears a striking similarity to passages pronounced in millennia-old spiritual texts.
Scientists say that the reality we experience is actually a computer simulation operating on a universal scale, writes Dan Duda for Mensa Bulletin (June 2015). In this scenario, the "beginning" would have been caused by a godlike programmer pressing the "on" button. To support this view, scientists point out that a computer simulation is pixilated - as you look closer and closer, the image on a computer screen can be seen to be made of separate dots, called pixels. Likewise, quantum science has discovered that our reality is also pixilated, generated from individual and extremely tiny dots (atoms, subatomic particles, quarks). In fact, not just matter but space and time are thought to be pixilated or "quantized" as well.
Is it just me, or does this fancy-pants theory sound an awful lot like the Matrix movies?
Inspired writers of spiritual texts did not have computers to compare reality to, because these writings predate the technological age by thousands of years. But they did have dreams, which have existed as long as there have been dreamers to dream them up, which is to say as long as there have been minds.
And dreams are very much like the scientist's version of reality as computer simulation. The "on" button is the beginning of the dream in the mind of God. Dreams just sort of start, as if from nothing, appearing on the blank "screen" of consciousness. And the seemingly real events of the dream, things you can touch and taste and see and hear, are just generated by the mind, the ultimate computer.
The Dakshinamurthy Stotra or Hymn to Shiva states: "The Master sees within himself the entire universe, which resembles the image of a city in a mirror, which appears to be outside him just as objects seen in a dream are outside the dreamer, but which merges into himself in the state of Realization - for then he sees the Self alone, just as the awakened dreamer sees himself alone and not the objects he dreamt."
The point is not to focus on the objects you dream, or the images on the computer screen, or the manifest reality that scientists and spiritualists compare these to. Focus on the one, and only one, illimitable force responsible for all the phenomena we see, and the act of seeing them.
In other words, do not fix your attention on the transient events of birth and death and all that falls in between, nor in the act of perceiving/experiencing them. Rather, fix yourself on that which sees all these things - because it is THAT which is responsible for all.
The great sage Ramana Maharshi tells us that just a quarter of an hour a day for this practice is all that is necessary. With years of steady, daily practice, the Master is made. That which sees is inside you. It is you. And evidence of your progress is found in perfect peace of mind, which is life's highest aim. You, the true you, are the goal, and the science of the Self is very easy to learn.
As for religion, whether Christianity, Islam, Buddhism or other, it can only take us to the one point where all religions meet and no further. That point is God. God is everything, and everything is God. This from the Bhagavad Gita:
"The Master by frequently practicing concentration of mind sees the Self in all beings and all beings in the Self and has thus the same attitude towards all."
What is this attitude? It is love. To practice love, there is no need for science or religion, because love is your true nature.
As the above sage once said, "You commit the murder of God by not knowing that you are God."
God is Love. Be Love.