Tua Pek Kong, Singapore's grand old divine uncle, picture by Francis Chin

I saw this question in the book, The Mind’s I, Fantasies and Reflections on Self and Soul, by Douglas R. Hofstadter and Daniel C. Dennett.

Morality and the idea of life on earth as an examination period to test humans on whether they can be good or not, is a load of Christian crap. In the conversation in this book, God says:

“If you really believe I am as good and benevolent as I am cracked up to be, why should I require people to merit things like happiness and eternal life? Why should I not grant such things to everyone regardless of whether or not they deserve them?”

Angry God

The perception of God with an outraged sense of justice who demands that goodness be rewarded with happiness and evil be punished with pain is a falsehood spread by irresponsible, ignorant Christian preachers. One of the most notorious examples was a 19th Century hellfire preacher, Jonathan Edwards, who titled his sermon, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. Sweet Jesus, what a mean title!

“Fortunately I have not been exposed to the tirades of Mr Jonathan Edwards,” says God. “Few sermons have ever been preached which are more misleading. In the first place, I am never angry. In the second place, I do not think at all in terms of ‘sin’. In the third place, I have no enemies.”

You are a part of God

When people “hate” God, what they hate is their image of God. As we all know, God was individually created in the image of each man. But if you were to understand God’s true nature, you will find it psychologically impossible to hate him simply because you are part of God. He is your senses, your life, your scheme of things.

“I am the scheme of things... I am the process. The ancient Taoists were quite close when they said of me (whom they called Tao) that I do not do things, yet through me all things get done. In more modern terms I am not the cause of the Cosmic Process. I am Cosmic Process itself. I think the most accurate and fruitful definition of me which man can frame is -- at least in his present state of evolution -- is that I am the very process of enlightenment. Those who think of the devil (although I wish they wouldn't) might analogously define him as the unfortunate length of time the process takes,” says God.

God is really Tua Pekkong

Personally, I think that “God” as the omni-everything chap (omnipotent, omnipresent, etc) is man’s creation. If God exists, he or she or it — we’re not sure of God’s gender — would indeed be none other than Tua Pekkong 大伯公, the avuncular Taoist deity whose red and gold altar is found in most Singapore homes (see picture below).

Tua Pekkong or Grand Uncle God is a benign-looking chap that Ah Bengs and Ah Lians (the philistines who comprise the majority of the Singapore population) pray daily for blessings of all kinds, from hitting the jackpot to passing school exams and prospering in business. He can be considered the patron God of Singapore, and under his protection and care, this little island republic has grown fat and stuffed.

Western quantum physicists and cosmologists who talk blithely of the Tao should therefore visit Singapore and offer a few incense sticks to Tua Pekkong in acknowledgement of his role in their mystical scientific speculation.

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Tua Pekkong’s altar is a common sight in most homes in Singapore; his name on the top row, is written right to left