When Ananthapindika, a wealthy young man met the Buddha at the bamboo groove at Rajagriha, the Buddha spoke to him clearly about his views on the existence of God and the real cause behind the creation of beings in this world. These views of the Buddha are summarized in the following manner:
1. If God is the maker of all living things, then they all should have to submit to His power silently. They have to be like the vessels produced by the potter, without any individuality of their own. If that is so, how can they all practice virtue?
2. If this world is indeed created by God, then there should be no such thing as sorrow or calamity or evil, for all the pure and impure deeds must come from Him.
3. If that is not the case then there must be some other cause besides God which is behind Him, in which case He would not be self-existent.
4. It is not convincing that the Absolute has created us, because that which is absolute cannot be a cause. All things here arise from different causes. Then can we can say that the Absolute is the cause of all things alike? If the Absolute is pervading them, then certainly It is not their creator.
5. If we consider the Self as the maker, why did it not make things pleasant? Why and how should it create so much sorrow and suffering for itself?
6. It is neither God nor the self nor some causeless chance which creates us. It is our our deeds which produce both good and bad results according to the law of causation.
7. We should therefore "abandon the heresy of worshipping God and of praying to him. We should stops all speculation and vain talk about such matters and practice good so that good may result from our good deeds.
The Buddha did not encourage speculation on the existence of Iswara, (God) among his disciples. He wanted them to confine themselves to what was within their field of awareness, that is, to understand the causes of suffering and work for its mitigation.
He preached that the individual was a product of ignorance and an illusion which were responsible for all the suffering and evil. He therefore urged his disciples to become aware of the various aspects of their individual personalities and work for Nirvana which was but the total extinction of this individuality and cessation of all becoming and changing.