A Collection of Esoteric Writings of T. Subba Row/"H. X." and God Personal and Impersonal
"H. X." AND GOD PERSONAL AND IMPERSONAL.
"H. X." in the above named article writes about the so-called Atheists: "In the first place while they talk of laws, they overlook, it seems to me, the fact that a law postulates a law-giver—a will at any rate that has impressed a course of action—and so it seems to me that admitting an inherent law, they cannot logically escape a will that originated that law, and such a will in such a case must be what mankind understands as God."
If I am allowed to paraphrase this freely, it can be rendered thus:—
One of the fundamental laws of the Universe is that there can be no law without a law-giver.
Now, I find this assumption in Mill, if I am not mistaken, in what is appropriately called his 'Carpenter's theory of the Universe.' Mr. Joseph Cook in his Boston lectures, and subsequently at Bombay, uses the same argument; and doubtless many men take this for an axiom, as I did only a little while ago. But on investigation I find it not true in all cases. Their deduction from this is inconsistent with the axiom; and this delusion arises from the fact that human laws created by human beings are confounded with universal laws; and by analogy it is inferred, that those latter also must have been created by a law-giver. I proceed to show what, I believe, is an inconsistency in those who argue in this fashion. Just on account of its inconsistency with itself, the argument will not be clear, but may be intelligible on reflection.
If, then, 'That there can be no law without a law-giver' is a universal law, then, by this very law, which, to avoid confusion of ideas, I shall call the Law of laws, it must itself have a law-giver. This very giving of law implies that there was a time when the law did not exist,—i. e., before the will of the Giver 'impressed the course of action.' If this is admitted, then, there was a time when laws did not require a law-giver; is it not possible to conceive they may have existed then? They may have, or they may not, but it is, at least, a possible conception. If, on the other hand, anybody would say that this 'giving' does not imply any limit of time (which is a very audacious suggestion, to say the least,) even then he does not gain much by it. For, if the law were eternal, it was co-eternal with the giver, it had no birth; in fact, it was not given and there was no giver.
Having shown this difficulty in the way of accepting "H. X.'s" hypothesis, I have only to remark that his idea of 'personal' God is not without difficulties to me.
B. J. P.