drvsacharya.blogspot.com's write on Zakir Naik's style made me think till late night. I helped myself get confused better. Going a step farward, I will help improve your confusion a little more. However, what I assure you is, this is not a mystic thing. If you think so at the end of reading (if you survive long enough!) either you have to read it again or I have to write this thing all over again, differently.
A lot of people are simply confused (like me) about Brahman and GOD (I am not talking about Brahmins;Iit is about Brahma). Solvation and Realization etc etc... We have plethora of philosophers and their friends (not forget their wives)
talking about these things. All of them have left me confused. But yesterday I had what I can call 'a clearer' understanding. Here is it's summary.
When we believe in God or in science or any other ideology or philosophy, we meerly shift from one doctrine to another. One of interpretations of Vedanta intends to explore beyond all these. The concept of Brahman is a result of such an attemp. I liked how Dr V S Acharya put it: "unconditioned consciousness". Assume a state where there is absolutely, completely no conditioning, that is Brahman. Consider very physical conditioning that all animals or anything must go through such as being in womb, birth etc to bare minimum animal conditioning and other social conditioning at the higher level such as relations and philosophies. If something can exist without indoctrination, conditioning or prejudice that is Brahman; not GOD. There is no believing because there is only realization that there could be such a state. It can not be preached for it would become another philosophy or discipline like science or religion. It must be expored by individuals and realized in according to or as much their intellect allows them to.
Atman (mistranslated as soul) could be an ego centric perspective of Brahman and therefore not attached to body but there is a sense of self because it is a individual pespective that is not common to all. Liberation therefore is liberation from conditioning.
There is no rebirth. There is no soul. There is no creater. Brahman is not GOD but meerly unconditioned consciousness. Some call it The Truth. Whatever it is, not GOD!
*You may like to read Douglas Hofstadter's, I Am a Strange Loop (first 100 pages are horrible and the book is full of ideosyncratic phrases - tough read). This book is a scientist's attempt to understand Self.
**This explanation is my understanding. This may be close to Ramana Maharshi's interpretation. Shankara's interpretation however seems to believe in rebirth (Remember: Punarapi jananam Punarapi maranam punarapi janani jatare shayanam...).