About the Writer

 

This book is based on the obsessions of a boy who during his childhood was brought up by his parents, who were originally Protestants. It was from them that the boy learnt that he must always do good to be eligible for the beautiful Heaven later after he dies, and that by doing evil he will only be worthy of the much dreaded Hell.

 

For a boy so timid and innocent as he was, such teachings have naturally left deep impressions in his heart. What’s more, just as he was reaching the age of ten his grandfather took him around a Buddhist temple, where much of what he could see on the interior walls were the numerous reliefs (a sculptural technique) depicting the horror of Hell.

Shortly before he grew up to be an adolescent, his parents abandoned their long-held belief and converted to Catholicism. Naturally this little boy was introduced to the teachings of his new religion, which among others pronounces that at the end of one’s life, one will inevitably face Purgatory, Hell and Heaven. Apart from this, he got acquainted with the teachings of Jehovah in which it is said that since God is the All Goodness, He thus does not create Hell. He also learnt that in the teachings of Islam, the Heaven that God has is multi-layered. Where then shall we go after we die?

At the Catholic school where he got his childhood education, however, his teachers’ kept instilling in him Religious teachings, which they said must be accepted without question. It would be enough for him to believe everything thought unto him, so they said. Ironically though and to his anguish, it was at the same school too that he was taught that Exact Sciences have to be backed up by evidence before they can gain widespread acceptance. To a boy of his age, then still at the stage of seeking his self-identity, such contradiction was indeed baffling. Firstly, he was confused by the varied explanations about life after death. Secondly, he was confused by the very fact that while his school had taught him to simply accept the teachings of his religion as absolute truths, they had also warned him that exact sciences must be proven first with some sort of evidence. The advice that a distinction should be made between science and religious dogmas is perhaps easier said then done. How are we to separate one from the other? Is it not a fact that both enlighten us on how we should lead our life in this world?

If only he had been like other children of his age, who in general are not so much affected by things considered to be as bewildering as such issues as described earlier, things would certainly have been much easier for him. However, being a daydreamer, all these issues turn out to have posed a burden to him to the extent that he becomes so obssessed with finding the answers to them.

It was all these inconsistencies that had led him to lose interest in formal education and to chose to learn the various sciences on his own out of school.

Regardless of all these, he however still believes in the presence of “Something above human life.” As proofs, he proposed the very fact that we humans are highly influenced by not only the condition of our surroundings and conditions from within our own body but also the life process we are undergoing and which will end with our inevitable death. That’s why the only thing he holds on to is the teachings of a particular religion that recognizes  the presence of the “Something Utmost in Nature”, commonly known as God, that creates the whole universe. More than that, He creates not only the universe but also the characteristics of the contents of the universe themselves. It is, therefore, his conviction that any endeavor meant to attain knowledge of the Greatness of the Creator must involve the learning of His creations. Is it not true that by having some knowledge of  how beautiful, well-organized, and elaborate the work of art of a person is, we can at least evaluate how intelligent and wise he is?

He certainly does not expect such an evaluation to come from the devotees of the different religions, each with his or her own interpretation and each claiming that the teachings of his or her religion are the most truthful. One may perhaps ask, “Is it not a fact that the sciences attained by man as the outcome of his observation of the creations of God have, like all else, kept changing?” To this, and out of his awareness that Sciences are but human endeavors, he has no denial. Nevertheless, he believes that whatever change that occurs with them, it generally leads us to a better understanding of the subject matter. To him, making such changes as in science is better than insisting that a particular idea is true, on the grounds that it is what God himself says, yet any explanations about it as proposed by one religion differ from those of another. It is all these differences that have brought about confusion among lots of people who are in the same state as the writer.

It is for this very reason too that whatever science man attained from his observation of the creations of God, it should be one that is able to lead us towards the Creator. It is here where his entire obsession began. One by which he hopes to get at least a slight picture of what he is being confronted with in the real world through the creations of the Creator. 

 

The little boy who has now grown up to be an adult, inquisitively, tries to learn and observe what actually is happening in this universe. However, given the fact that science covers so vast a domain, all that he has managed to learn is one that is confined to only at the core.

Verily, it his fear of God, resulting from his doubts about many of the things that he has learnt from the various religious teachings, that he has always kept praying to Him to give him His guidance in every step of his search.

Thus page by page he starts to explore his mind in his search for what has become his obsession, eventually resulting in the publication of, among others, this book which he entitles “The Emergence of the Cell.”

 

reinarto@hadipriono.com

 

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