Ramana Maharshi on God, Will of God, Creator
Question : What is the relationship between God and the world? Is he the creator or sustainer of it?
Ramana Maharshi : Sentient and insentient beings of all kinds are performing actions only by the mere presence of the sun, which rises in the sky without any volition. Similarly all actions are done by the Lord without any volition or desire on his part. In the mere presence of the sun, the magnifying lens emits fire, the lotus-bud blossoms, the water-lily closes and all the countless creatures perform actions and rest.
The order of the great multitude of worlds is maintained by the mere presence of God in the same manner as the needle moves in front of a magnet, and as the moonstone emits water, the waterlily blossoms and the lotus closes in front of the moon.
In the mere presence of God, who does not have even the least volition, the living beings, who are engaged in innumerable activities, after embarking upon many paths to which they are drawn according to the course determined by their own karmas, finally realize the futility of action, turn back to Self and attain liberation.
The actions of living beings certainly do not go and affect God, who transcends the mind, in the same manner as the activities of the world do not affect that sun and as the qualities of the conspicuous four elements [earth, water, fire and air] do not affect the limitless space.
Question : Why is samsara - creation and manifestation so full of sorrow and evil ?
Ramana Maharshi : God's will!
Question : Why does God will it so?
Ramana Maharshi : It is inscrutable. No motive can be attributed to that power - no desire no end to achieve can be asserted of that one infinite, all-wise and all-powerful being. God is untouched by activities, which take place in his presence. Compare the sun and the world
activities. There is no meaning in attributing responsibility and motive to the one before it becomes many.
Question : Does everything happen by the will of God?
Ramana Maharshi : It is not possible for anyone to do anything opposed to the ordinance of God, who has the ability to do everything. Therefore to remain silent at the feet of God, having given up all the anxieties of the wicked, defective and delusive mind, is best.
Question : Is there a separate being Iswara [personal God] who is the rewarder of virtue and punisher of sins? Is there a God?
Ramana Maharshi : Yes.