Brain & Mind Indian philosophy

Science & Hindu philosophical traditions: The twain must not meet

With our politicians working hard to ensure that discussing Hinduism becomes impossible when you are not suitably armed, I am tempted to brave it because I sense that people misunderstanding both science and Hindu philosophy are killing a great intellectual tradition that holds reality from a completely different end.

In my entirely personal opinion, if Hindu philosophers are sitting sipping soma-rasa in swarga, they must be getting most agitated by the Fritjof Capras and Sadhgurus of the world that are discovering modern physics in their work, as they were, most likely, trying to steer clear from the working end of the reality where physics operates.

It is not so that there is no convergence between science and Hindu philosophical traditions as both are trying to understand the nature of reality, and both start with the same premise that there is something beyond what we can see.

They continue holding hands till they reach the next presumptuous conclusion that human beings would be able to comprehend the true nature of reality. This is a giant leap of faith for both as there is no real proof from either that we humans really qualify for this grand feat.

After this point their paths start moving apart, as science sees no need of this learning to be universal for all humans. It operates in isolation without bothering to engage masses. Hindu philosophy works on a different problem, and that is to find a way for entire humanity to join the quest using a common asset we all have, i.e. our brain. Science discovers quantum physics and calculus on the way that few can understand, while Hindu philosophy discovers meditation, an accessible-to-all tool.

The big difference is, science has not really thought about the end result, i.e. what happens when we unveil the reality completely. This is where Hindu philosophy ventures and realizes how meaningless an individual existence will become once the wholeness is cognized.

This is, probably, the greatest achievement of a process aimed at unveiling of the reality, and it came about purely because Hindu philosophy looked at the problem from the (internal) perceiver’s end, unlike science’s (external) empirical end.

With this insight, Hindu philosophy could construct a grand corollary. Aagyana (ignorance) is the cause of divided-ness that we perceive as reality, once it is dispelled; an individuality-dissolving unification with the whole is natural. With a presumption that holistic awareness is the end result, Hinduism aims at preparing brain for that.

There is obviously a catch in this presumption of Hindu philosophy, as what if the reality is not unified at any level, what if the divisions that we see are real?

If that is the case, we are living in a universe of eternal agitation and chaos, a state where human brain can never find peace.

I personally love science for its sheer bravery, as it is ready to face such a reality. Science thrives purely on the sense of wonder. Excitement of a journey into the unknown is its objective, not the peace of mind.

Science discounts need of peace and happiness native to human brain while Hindu philosophy offers a way of living a happier calmer life that all brains aspire for.

There is no real way to judge between these paths, but it is clear that letting achievements of a 5000 year long process go waste by forcing it into a mold formed by a process that is directly opposite in nature is disastrous.

Let Hindu philosophy be spared of constraints of science. Live it if you like it, or leave it to let it move forward on its path.

DNA: 1/4/16

I am happy to admit that I have managed surviving till now with minimum effort as all my intellect has be used to avoid doing anything meaningful. As I needed to while all the free time I generated in course of being lazy, science has been my favorite muse that I have enjoyed company of. As an effort to kill time (in a way, to get even with it) one fine day I decided to write a science column, more for my personal amusement than to attract readers. After getting educated about the attention span of modern readers from my editor, it became more like a challenge to tackle esoteric subjects in 600 words that I have managed to remain interested in for more than a year now. I do not want to add my worldly profile here as these are ideas that need to be considered only on the merits they carry and not as an opinion of a certain human being.

2 comments on “Science & Hindu philosophical traditions: The twain must not meet

  1. Sir, your Blogs are highly informative and a feed for the brain. Keep them up šŸ™‚

    • Sir, if you like it share it, as thoughtful articles find very few readers and hence it is very demotivating to put effort to write.

      Thank you for reading.

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