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Vedanta – The Science of Life

 

Vedanta——-The Science of Life

 

Author: Dr Sagar Dwivedi (sagardwi@yahoo.com)

 

Introduction

[It (the Vedanta) is an exhaustive science of better living; Prescribes a simple code of conduct for life leading to the development of natural habit of making right contact with worldly objects, and voluntary self restraints in respect of reactions to those contacts.]

 

A person in his life time invokes, on average, a million times or more the single letter syllable ‘I’. This is the way he keeps asserting his existence. And yet it is easy to say ‘I’, and even feel that one exists – that one has life, but difficult to define life.

In spite of scientist’s protestations, the life is not the material body and mind, not even the DNA/Genes – one of the greatest discoveries of sciences on the mysteries of life. As such, DNA/Genes are only an assemblage of atoms in a chain of organic molecules but when we say ‘Life’ we are trying to assert its capability to not only reproduce but to generate responses and actions. Does that mean atom itself has life? And how about electrons, protons, quarks etc.?

 

On the origin of life, scientists are only able to say that first came inorganic material, then the organic molecules, and these molecules then acquired life. In this sense life for scientists really means a simple reproducibility of material body. The question of consciousness that inspires the reproducibility of molecules and their coordination through the cells of the entire body, remains unexplained. More importantly though the consciousness that inspires the thought flow that ultimately leads to all the big and small activities of life, remains completely non-comprehended.

 

If we are to believe scientists, and there is no reason not to, the evolution of life on earth followed a definite sequence. In short————

——-Hydrogen – Inorganic molecule – Organic molecule (insentient) – Life in organic proteins (reproducibility) – Fungus – Plants – Fish – Reptiles – Mammals – Apes – Homo-erectus – Homo-sapiens – Homo-sapiens-sapiens——–.

Such a model however leaves some important questions unanswered viz.

1)                  What is the pin-ultimate source of hydrogen and other sub-atomic particles including the subtlest known as quarks?

2)                  What is the source of the nuclear forces and in the ultimate analysis the source of all these sources?

3)                  How, when, and why the organic molecule acquired reproducibility? And whether the evolutionary process is quantized or continuous i.e. whether it is a planned one and linearly smooth or it is quantized and in jumps? (Carl Seagan says the evolution has taken place along divergent lines). An answer to this question is necessary to know the ultimate evolutionary fate of man-wise – man-wise-wise – man-wise-wise-wise etc. evolutionary sequence.

4)                  What is the life? What is its purpose? And how it came about?

Think of it and we are left with the beginning, the middle, and the end unexplained.

 

An over-enthusiasm of scientists and so called scientific minded persons has prevented many of us from seriously looking at the essential Vedanta. Had we done so we would have been amazed to discover an enormous amount of complementarities with modern sciences. In Comparison, differences pale into oblivion but for the one that appears to create a deep hiatus between the two. And this basic difference is:

The modern sciences consider consciousness as an integral part of any living body so that the separation of consciousness from the matter is unthinkable. This has completely obliterated the consciousness of the Consciousness from serious thought processes and/or any serious discussion on the subject.

 

Vedanta on the other hand considers the Consciousness as a prime independent inspiration for the creation of any matter or non-matter with or without sentiency. At the same time, however, in existence it appears as an integral part of the object. These differences will come out more clearly in latter discussions.

 

These two views of modern sciences and the Vedanta do have their important implications and impact on the practical living of human beings. If homo-sapiens have their origin in the non-sentience matter, the fulfillment of all their aspirations and happiness will then depend on the external material objects. Alas! The development of great technologies, to achieve such ends, has failed to provide a man with any permanent happiness. How can it, when all material objects are perishable and continuously transforming. It offers only a temporary happiness to men who have now definitely become bonded slaves to the pursuits of material happiness and have lost their piece of mind and natural free living.

 

Vedanta on the other hand considers ones own ‘consciousness self’, as the prime mover (more correctly an efficient cause) of all ones actions. It is then possible to find ways and means of making oneself happier in day to day life without excessive material indulgence and at the same time attaining the highest state of evolution (inherent in the pure intellect) viz. sapien-sapien-sapien———. (Adi Sankaracharya, in his Vivek-Chudamani has beautifully summed up this evolutionary path ie Jantunam Narjanm————-etc) Man will then be free from all bondage of ignorance.

 

If the aforesaid difference between the conscious ness and the matter is understood, the principles of infinite and external happiness have then been discovered. This is what has been attempted here through the Vedantic knowledge.

 

Body and Mind (Kshetra)

 

Quotes:             Geeta       13.1, 5-6

 

Human body has thus, as per Sankhya/Vedantic philosophy, been considered to be a combination of twenty four elements plus the Consciousness. Such a classification has though been devised more for functional purposes than to study gross physical components, the subject which essentially belongs to the field of medicinal system of Ayurveda. The matter elements of the body have been included in their subtle forms (micro-form) as five root physical elements (Panch Mahabhut). These elements are:

Space (sound),

Air (touch or contact or pressure),

Fire (form or ionic plasma),

Water (ras or flavour, chemical reaction),

And the Earth (smell or solidity).

Also the sense objects that we chase all the time to fulfill our desires are represented by five subtle elements viz.

Word (sound)

Contact (touch or pressure)

Form ( appearance)

Ras or flavour ( reaction)

Smell (solidity).

 

More importantly, the Vedanta takes up holistic approach to everything, including life, as against the reductionist approach followed by modern scientists. Present day scientist thus investigates an object by studying its component behaviour and assuming that the overall character of the object is sum total of components. But this is contrary to all scientific experiences e.g. helium, a combination of two hydrogen atoms, contains less energy than the sum total energy of two hydrogen atoms. The principle of atom bomb is based on splitting the uranium atom into two and and thus proving the point that the original atom contained more energy than the sum total of the two by-products. Keeping this in mind, the vedantins proceed from the whole – one single truth. The enquiry into the components is only in the context of understanding the whole.

 

The holistic approach of the Vedantins is really the story of the descent of Godliness to Humanity i.e. the confinement of the infinite to the limits of smaller periphery of the worlds of body and mind. This descent is called the ‘Sarga’, the ‘Shristi’ or the ‘creation’. It is also the story of parlay, the merger of confined worlds into their original infinite expanses. This is the ascent of confined humanity to the vast infinite expanses of Godliness. We have no control over our descent, which is the result of our past actions, but the present and future actions are in our hands; we can control themin a manner befitting the attainment of Jivan-Mukti – the true freedom within the confinements of this body-mind which will remain with us till death.

 

But for this we must first understand the world of aforementioned twenty four elements of ‘Vyasti’ (individual) and ‘Samasti’ (the universe), and also know the 25th – the Godliness (the Super-consciousness). The body of an individual is described in the Geeta as field – the field of experience. The twenty four elements of this field make us experience not only the external material world and the internal world of our body-mind-intellect equipment but also permit us to experience our subtle existence of ‘Chitta’ and the ‘Cosmic Super-consciousness’. In the context of these experiences, the universal elements of the body can be grouped in different combinations according to their similarity of functioning and the subtleness (in terms of their pervasiveness). These are discussed below.

The Vedanta makes five convenient groupings of the twenty four elements of body viz.e

  1. Five great physical elements (Panch Mahaabhoot).
  2. Five vital airs (Panch Vayu or Panch Praan or Physiological centres).
  3. Five senses of action (Panch Karmendriya).
  4. Five senses of knowledge ((Panch Gyanendriya).
  5. Four internal instruments (Antah Karan – Mind, Intellect, Ego or Aham, Memory).

 

The Mahaabhoot – Space (Aakaash), Air (Vaayu), Fire (Agni), Water (Jal), and Earth (Prithwi) are considered in their subtle  material form which can grossify (through a well defined grossification process) into the well known physical elements Space etc. In their subtle form they may be recognized only through their essence characteristics called ‘Panch Tanmatra’ (five subtlest entities). The five ‘Tanmatras’ are called the ‘Sound (shabd)’, ‘Touch/contact (sparsh)’, ‘Form (roop)’,  ‘Flavour/reaction (ras)’, ‘Smell (gandh or solidity)’ and are considered to be very important in Vedanta as the first physical descents of the universe somewhat in a manner we talk about four primary forces of the atomic/ sub-atomic world or elementary/fundamental particles and the four primary fields/forces. The vedantic Panch Mahaabhoot and Panch Tanmatra are inter-related in a manner similar to matter and energy. Thus the origin of the concept of mass-energy convertibility lay in Vedanta itself – many thousand years before the famous E=mc**2 equation of Einstein.

 

Lest one takes it as an accidental forced interpretation of the ancient primitive words, let me read the vedantic description of the creation of the universe.

 

“Tasmataakaashah sambhootah, Aakaashad vayuh————————-Adbhyah Prithvi”

 

So the first subtle physical element was Akaash (space) characterized by its’ subtlest form sound. Then the air characterized by contact (it really should be termed pressure in modern scientific terminology) etc. In short the sequence of creation of universal elements would be as follows:

 

Sound  >>> Pressure   >>> Plasma (temperature)   >>> Reactivity   >>> Solidity etc.

 

Elsewhere it is said, ‘from God descended Akshar (ie OUM)’ which is ‘Parmonadah (ie Great Sound)’. This obviously is the Big-Bang of cosmic origin.

 

Our purpose here was not to compare the modern theories of the creation of the universe with the Vedanta view but only to clarify and elaborate the real nature of Panch Mahaabhoot in their subtlest energy/matter form. These five elements form, from their subtlest form and after the process of grossification (called Panchikaran), the visible physical elements Akaash, Vaayu, Agni, Water, and Earth which are, in their own turn, responsible for the formation of our gross body. This is the body that we mistakenly take to be the sole doer of all our activities.

 

 

The Creation

Introduction

 

There are essentially three elements in the universe from which everything else originates.  According to Vedanta `Uttam Purus (Brahma) is the only one from which all originates.  These are:

 

__________ is the material cause

________ is the consciousness (cosmic) which is also called `Purus’ elsewhere

Uttam Purus is other than and transcends them.  It is also called `Paramatma’.  When this Parmatma enters the word (material) it is called `__________ and is the sustainer of the world.

 

Prakriti andPurusare both eternal.

 

The whole material world is created from Prakriti, i.e., Prakriti is the material cause of the universe and the cause of all transformations emanating from Sattwa, Raj & Tam.

 

The `Purus/Atma’ in this body is in fact Parmatma itself.  He is the ______________ the witness, the Sustainer of this world (___________), the Enjoyer/Experiencer (__________), Maheswar.  He is also called Parmatma.

 

(In Vedantic terminology the Brahma is also called Parmatma and as the Life principle the same Brahma is called `Maheswar’ (_______________ in the cosmic body and Jeevatma in the individual body).

 

As the witnessing self of the anatman (not self constituted of gross, subtle and casual bodies) the sat – cit – anand principle is called `Atman’ and the same Sat-Cit-Anand Principle when considered as the reality or substratum behind the world of names and forms is called `Brahman’.

 

In summary there are three basic elements that are eternal and recognized as the basic cause of the creation (origin) of this Universe.

 

The Brahma, also known as Parmatma, Uttam Purus etc, is the efficient cause; the Prakriti also known as Avidha, _________ Maya etc. is the material cause.  The cosmic consciousness also called Chetan,Purus, Ishwar, this consciousness in its proximity with an individual is called `Jeevatma’.

 

The Creation:  The above introduction was necessary to indicate terminologies that are used in various Indian philosophies.  The present theory is based on the two most popularly accepted Indian Philosophies viz. Vedanta and Sankhya yog.  We will use the name of basic eternal elements as the Brahma, Prakriti and Chetan.  Thus the primary tree is

 

Brahma

Prakriti/Maya                                                                          Chetan/Purus

 

 

As indicated earlier Prakriti is the root material cause of this universe and hence it is called Root Prakriti.  We will therefore discuss in detail the creation and dissolution of material world from this main source.  But before doing that we may make some comments on `Brahma’.  It would be considered in detail in latter chapters.  The Brahma is formless, without any attributes, unthinkable and beyond the ultimate imagination of our faculties.  Thus in practice there is nothing to discuss in a normal language.  It can only be experienced in the highest state of Samadhi.

 

And yet it is a singular point or law in which the origin of this universe viz. `Prakriti andPurus’ lies. Prakriti andPurusare essentially two independent powers of Brahma that lie uniformly dormant (homogeneous) in it until the will to create arises.  But remember, we are not talking here of some phantom or human looking object, which is what some scientists imaging when they argue against the Brahma Tattwa.

 

In fact as we go on ____________ elemental and energy forms of universe/universes into their subtlest forms beyond which we cannot think of their form, characteristic etc.  The subtlest state beyond that is the `Brahma’.

 

The foremost attributes that can be assigned to Brahma is the Energy field and this energy exists eternally in `It’ in dormant state.  Since energy does not have a form this root Prakriti is called ________________________ (unmanifest root prakriti). But in addition to this _________________ there is another eternal attribute called the consciousness (cosmic consciousness) and Chetan (an efficient cause).

 

The two powers Prakriti andPurusare inactive in their individual characters.  In the present day scientific terminology the potentials “Prakriti andPurus” do not create any field force individually as they are uniformly distributed in Brahm.  This state of affair is equivalent to that termed by Davies and others as quantuam ground state of the Universe.

 

Next state comes up when Chetan is in contract with Prakriti.  This contact in vedantic terms is the most important one.  Although Prakriti andPurusare both powers (energy potentially they are essentially two different types of potentials in the sense that they do not mix together like say oil and water.  This is the reason why they are said to be in contact rather than mix or join together.  This state (contact) is said to come about by the `Will’ of the Brahm (Here will should be taken in a worldly sense to mean that we do not know and cannot know when chetan Brahma wants to be in contact with Prakriti with an intent to create and is called the `Kshubdha’ state of Prakriti (i.e., disturbance in the uniformity of potential filed is now ready to manifest itself in force or energy gradient nectar.  The whole hell breaks down now and the shristi starts to be created in stages.

 

Prakriti –PurusContact

 

A special discussion on Prakriti –Puruscontact warranted and is being included here for two reasons.  One that this episode (state) of creation has been presented in a somewhat romantic manner in literature.  Second to answer scientific curiosity on the `will’ of the Eshwar (the super consciousness)

 

In the Vedantic and Sankhyak literature, the Prakriti andPurusare presented as a female and male couple.  And in order to procreate, the Prakriti attractsPurusfor mating.  When this coupling takes place, thePurusimpregnates the Prakriti with the `seed’ of creation (like spermatozoa of a male making union with the female egg) (Not only this, Shaivites present the Eshwar (Shiv) as Ardhaneshwar (Half male – Half female).  The result of this union is naturally a progeny `shristi’.  This offspring of the Eshwar then becomes the cause of pleasure and pain just as sons and daughters of a couple become a source of inspiration for their happiness and worries in life.  This romantic picture has been so vividly described by Krishna bhaktas in recent times that a common Hindus has created a bodily superhuman image of Eshwar forgetting that they are simile’s and symbolic presentations of the Purus (the cosmic consciousness) and of the attribute-less Brahma Parmatma.

 

The real victims of their own making of such a misunderstanding have been the many so called scientists and intellectuals.  They have never read the original vedantic literature and whenever they read they read generally English translations.  They become totally misguided because, first of all there are no one-to-one words in English for most of the vedantic Sanskrit words, secondly westerners or even westernized Indians do not possess the inner feeling on spiritualism in a manner in which a common Hindu feels and practices the real meaning of Hindu philosophic thoughts in his day-to-day life.  (The lack of such an understanding among Europeans arises perhaps from the fact that originally Christianity did not have a developed philosophy to match their beliefs.  And when in later periods some philosophic order was created it had only scattered / stray thoughts coloured with in eye on either their practical living political conditions or making religious conversions as the main base of their thoughts or even copying of Hindu and Buddhist philosophical thoughts with necessary distortions to glorify Christianity and belittle Indian spiritual life).

 

We may now see why a modern educated Indian intellectual denies more vehemently the existence of the God and demands to see the superhuman God as a proof.  Actually there should not have been no denial or acceptance of Eshwar particularly Brahm because He is attribute-less.  Unfortunately for these Indian intellectuals the belief in the God is imprinted inherently and culturally in their back of the mind and therefore they are not really non-believers.  It is only in their over-enthusiasm to show that they are modernized/scientists get into unnecessary and illogical discussions on whether Brahm/Eshwar exists.  One more point on scientists – they start with a rigid assumption that nothing beyond matter exists and therefore as French philosopher quotes from Bohr.

 

  1. “Physics tells us not about what is but what we can say to each other about the world”

 

  1. “Word ‘atom’ is simply a convenient way of talking about what is nothing but a set of mathematical relations connecting different observations”.

 

  1. “Energy is merely part of a set of mathematical relationships that connect together observations of mechanical processes in a simple way.  Similarly electrons, protons etc. consolidate a set of mathematical relations connecting observations”.

 

Bergson:

 

Bergson says they will only prove or disprove matter.  I being a scientist myself feel disgusted with the stupidity of scientists in this matter.  Just think, they happily accept the existence of energy, electrons, quarts, etc. (completely non-visible objects).   They generally say that they have shown the “effect” of these objects forgetting that those effects become a reality only through their own matter theories which are propped up only to prove a preconceived notion that nothing other than matter exists.  Great scientists have never fallen into such a trap and here I would like to quote Neils Bohr the father of quantum atomic particles:

  1. “Physics tells us not about what is but what we can say to each other concerning the world.

 

Now let us examine the word “Will” of the God.  Reader may be familiar with quantum tunneling effect.  In a particular context, this means that an atomic particle in a lower energy state may jump the high energy barrier without any external help (i.e., extra energy) being provided to it to climb the barrier. Normal scientific principles lay down clearly that on its own an atomic particle can only drop down to a lower energy state. The probability of such an event taking place is small, though a certainly providing we are prepared to wait for as long as it takes.

 

In fact quantum mechanics interpretations are based only on Heisenberg Principle of uncertainty which states that two complementary variables for example position and time cannot be predicted precisely and simultaneously.  Put is another way the precise moment at which a quantum phenomenon will happen cannot be known with any certainty.  An interesting thought experiment of Schrödinger cat makes it more clear.

 

There is a steel box in which is penned up a cat.  At the other end of the chamber there is a Geiger counter tube containing a small piece of a radio active substance, so small that perhaps in an hour one of the atoms decoys but also with equal probability, perhaps none.  If it happens, an attached relay releases a hammer which shatters a small flask of hydrocyanic acid killing the cat instantly.

 

If the entire system is left of itself for an hour, one would say that the cat lives if in the meanwhile no atom has decayed.  The first atomic decay would have poisoned it.

 

Now according to the rules of quantum mechanics the total system is in a superposition to two states, one with a live cat, the other a dead cat.

 

 

Thus only after an observer looks into the box can one declare the cat either dead or alive.

 

Now there are two difference ways we may express this uncertainty of predictive power:

 

One that it is a chance that determines the occurrence of an event.  Other is that there is the “will” of some unknown power that makes it happen and we cannot predict the occurrence because we do not know when that power will operate It’s will.

 

The implication of both the statements is thus only the uncertainty of knowing the chance (by implication or unexplainable concept) or the `Will’ (which is again unexplainable because the Power Itself is attribute-less).  The whole difficulty arises because we are in these cases dealing with a subjective matter which is so subtle that it is beyond the reach of our intellect.

 

And in answer to a question “show me God”, let me add this.  In Vedanta, the Universe (in its totality) symbolizes the body of the God.  Who knows, the shape of the Universe may be looking like that of a human body (Super-human of course), if we could ever recognize and see the periphery of the Universe in one instant.  But such questions and answers are good enough only for arguments with in intention to score a point over one’s opponent.

 

Process of Creation

 

Modern view

 

Before we discuss the details of the “Creation” described in Vedantic Snaky philosophy, it would be useful to make a brief mention of the latest  concepts in the creation of the Universe (or shall we say ‘Universes’ as speculated by some scientists e.g. Macho Kaka in his Hyperspace and also by Davies and others).  The following brief summary is based on Davies book `Last three minutes’.

 

There is of-course no talk of the origin of the Universe from zero time because the problem of singularity still lingers on.  Thus at 10-40sec. or so (referred with reference to the big-bang the zero time of the Universe) the Universe was in its vacuum ground state.  This state is a quantum state as against the classical vacuum which may simply imply the non-existing of anything.  The  quantum ground state of the universe means that it can only be conceived of as a certain energy function and its natural state where the probability of its existence is maximum, i.e., it is the most stable state will be represented by the lowest value of the energy wave function.

 

Now, although the probability of existence of the original universe in its ground state is maximum. It can be in any of the other quantized energy states.  The probability of existence in other states, however, reduces and at very high energy states, the probability would be very very small though not zero.

 

Because of the quantum mechanical effects, the energy state at many points keeps jumping to higher energy states, the duration of existence of these higher states is smaller, the higher the energy of the new state.  Every time that the transient new energy state reverts back to the ground state, an equivalent amount of quantized energy is released.  These quanta are essentially particles quarks.  These quanta then condense into smallest fundamental particles of the universe viz. photons, leptons and nutrinoles and later on protons, neutrons etc.

 

After 3 minutes stable nuclei begin to form but the space was still opaque.  The opaqueness of the space originates from the free floating charges particles viz. electrons and protons in this case.    The temperature at this point of time still was about 109O K.  The existence of large number of charges particles at high temperatures is termed plasma.  So the whole universe at this point of time was a plasma.  After about 300000 years electrons begin to condense around nuclei to form atoms.  It was only after 3 billion years after the big bang that quasars, galaxies and solar systems etc. began to from.

 

For a layman, we may like to summarize it further –

 

i)        Thus there was a big-bang and then –

ii)      The smallest and the most fundamental particles `quarks’ were formed

iii)    An opaque plasma was formed with the creation of charged particles viz. electrons, protons and charged nuclei etc.

iv)    Atoms and molecules were formed with the condensation of electrons on charged nuclei.

v)      Solid bodies were formed

 

Before we proceed further let me make certain important comments on the description

 

i)        Was there existence of anything before the big-bang.  Specifically did the ground state exist before the big-bang?

ii)      Did any particles including the smallest quarks etc.  or any other existed before the universe or at the time of big-bang?

iii)    The basis of all such theories is the computer modeling particularly up to the time of formation of fundamental particles electrons, protons, neutrons etc.

iv)    What was the status of space and time, did they exist before the big-bang?

v)      The most important question is why did the big-bang occur and the time of its choosing.

vi)    It is said that we know with certainty the details from the time of about a mill-second or so from the time of big-bang and therefore only little knowledge may be left to be known between the zero time (if it existed at all?) and the 10-3 second time.

 

We however miss the point.  We are talking of the quantities of 10-40 seconds or even smaller and this time with reference to 10_____ (zero time) amounts to billions of billions of billions ___________________ years time.

 

Let me emphasize that we have not taken  up detailed views and many scientific intricacies that are involved in such great scientific works.  The purpose here is not to belittle the great strides that science and technology has taken within last two centuries.

 

Our purpose in describing a broad framework of modern theories of the origin of the universe and to see whether it compares to a broad simplistic Vedic model.  And this comparison is important because if they do even compliment each other than a continuity of efforts to improve the human life first in a subjective manner and later in a materialistic manner is established.  This continuity being derived from the same principles then offers great confidence in our efforts and generates a hope that any mistaken direction of efforts would be corrected sooner or later.

 

Srishti Vedic

 

This is one of the most important themes of all Vedic and `Pauranic’ literatures.  The reasons for detailed discussions on this topic are  essentially two-fold.  First, the method of negation is an accepted method of proof in Vedantic philosophy and this is the only way that we can understand `Brahman’ of the Advait philosophy (transcends whole universe).  Secondly, human beings are, in one aspect, essentially material bodies living among the material objects.  So unless one understands the details of material part of the word there is no way that one can sort out a best code of happy living.  However, it is a difficult topic (no less complicated and confusing in the modern sciences either) and appears to be full of contradictions as propounded by various rishis of the ancientIndia(Geeta 13.4)

 

In the following discussion we will shart with a simple description of the world and its creation and then gradually keep on expanding on its elaborations.  We have in order to facilitate proper understanding, however, adopted a terminology that is  more easily and commonly accepted by an ordinary Indian.  But we have included and explained all the alternative terms in appropriate places and have collated them in the Appendix A4.  In the same very Appendix we have also tried to point out the equivalence and relations between terminologies of different Indian philosophies.

 

In short then the Vedantic sequence is as given in Appendix A5.  Here the Brahman is the supreme mystery of the famous Indian advait philosophy and this mysterious `Tatava’ (the essence of all the elemental world) pervades the whole Brahmand (the totality of the universes) and it also transcends this Brahmand. IT has been beautifully expressed in few short famous phrases like –

 

 

The Brahman is also without birth and hence transcends `Time’, It is without attributes.  In the sankhya philosophy the origin of all the matter lies with the Prakriti which in its  _____________ (grand state) has three attributes viz. sathwa, Raj and Tam and is changeless and most importantly It does not combine  (in the sense of mixture) with the material world and is also `non-does’ _______ but the witness to all and everything that existed in the past, exists new and will ever exist in the future (                        etc.)

 

We will leave detailed considerations of the `Brahman’ for the later chapters but will like to mention that Vedant essentially considers `Brahma’ as ____________ ( the base for all existence) as against the direct cause of the origin of all that exists in the material `Brahmand’.  Such a consideration removes the paradox of material creation from nothingness and at the same time establishes a direct relation with the sole non-material `Truth’ the “Brahma’.  (Perhaps some understanding of the Brahman may be developed by comparison with the `either’ of the physics which is considered to be the medium for carrying light waves or electro-magnetic waves but nothing is supposed to happen to `either’ .  Also the exact character of `either’ is unknown.  There is however one difference – the `Brahman’ is in the final analysis the origin of each  and everything that pervades this world)

 

We now start the discussion on the material creation leading to the creation of life on earth (_________).

 

The first element of the material world is the `Eshwar’ which creates, sustains and also destroys each and everything that we know of and even that which we do not know of.  The three powers of creation, sustenance and destruction have been considered separately in the later Pauranic literature and have been identified with the Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh.  The well know trinity of the Indian spiritual life.

 

In the creation hierarchy there are two potential invisible powers `Prakriti’ and `Chetan’ (the consciousness).  The `Prakriti’ with its three attributes (Gunas) viz. Sattva, Raj and Tam lies dormant in its (________) base.  Here `dormancy’ has a somewhat specific meaning i.e., the potentials Sattva, Raj and Tam are uniformly distributed with no interaction between themselves.  These three attributes of `Prakriti’ however are the potential material cause of the whole universe when they mix together.  Geeta says –

 

Brahma  – Unknowable single cause of the universe

 

______ Brahma with two powers `Prakriti and Consciousness and Chetan lying dormant in It.  (It is called ______________________________).

 

Eshwar or ________ – Chetan now excites Prakriti causing disturbance in the uniformity of the three attributes hence ______________ ( The consciousness is now covered with three Gunas or Maya (hence ______________)

 

The stage at which `Prakriti’ lies dormant in `Brahman’ is called ___________ and is the root material cause.  The other power potential of Brahm is called Chetan (the consciousness).  The Brahma equipped with Prakriti and Chetan, in there dormant stage, is named (Brahma with powers).  This situation is the `pralay’ stage of shristi when each and every material / non-material object of the universe has been dissolved into the ultimate invisible dormant stage of `Prakriti’.

 

We thus identify three distinct elements.

 

i)        The `Brahman’ – unknowable, attributless.

ii)      The Prakriti  – the power of Brahm with three attributes ( uniformly distributed) Sattva, Raj, Tam

iii)    The Consciousness – the other power of Brahma.

Functionally these three elements are the Brahman, _______ or base; the Prakriti, the material cause and the consciousness, the efficient cause

 

And here lies the beginning of all creation – material or non-material – with a big bang of modern sciences.

 

I           The consciousness / Atman method of knowing is unique as against the knowledge senses.

 

Thus:

 

Senses require a medium to gain knowledge;

Consciousness does not; knowledge being its very nature, illumines object directly and instantly

 

 

The mind-intellect undergoes modification during the very process of knowledge by taking the form of the object.

 

The self remains without modification throughout the process of acquiring knowledge.

 

The after reaction of knowledge in the mind intellect could be like, dislike, indifference.

 

No reaction in Atman it  remains like mirror – Accepts everything, reflects everything, Rejects nothing, keeps nothing.

 

This package of three lies dormant unless the God `wills’.  This should not be interpreted in a normal worldly sense.  What it really means is that the Consciousness joins with the Prakriti to cause an excitement or non-uniformity in the three Guna’s.  The consciousness enveloped all over by the three Gunas is now called `Eshwar’ or Mahattatwa of Sankhya or ____________ of the Vedant.

 

It is however important to note that the Consciousness although of energy character, it is different than the energy character of three Gunas.  The Guna’s is themselves can mix together in the same way as energy potentials and have the further creative power of matter.  The consciousness on the other hand is a power somewhat similar to the power potential of a catalyst.  Thus without the interaction of the Consciousness, Gunas would not tread on the path of mixing together to create matter.  But in the process of creation the consciousness itself is not affected in the least and  it does not participate in the actual process of creation of the material world  Hence `It’ is called the witness, the non-does or the efficient cause of the universe.  Hence Geeta says-

 

 

 

 

That is  ________________________ is the great womb and the Brahman as Chetan   is the father who sows the seeds of creation in this womb.  It should be new clear why `Eshwar’ of Hindus is considered to be the creator, sustainer and destroyer of the universe.

 

We have already shown different energy potentials contained in it which are further subdivided into different functional powers as various contents of the universe expand.  These sub-powers in Hindu spiritual terminology are called ______ (gods).  That Eshwar and gods are worshipped by Hindus is their expression of gratitude to the power/powers that create and sustain them.  Don’t forget that modern civilized persons express their `thank you’ even for small actions of favours by others. God knows why they are then so allergic to their own inherent functional powers that have been inherited by them.

 

It is only after this stage that we can really have a dialogue with any scientist because the Vedantic creation starts from Mayopahita Chetan with Param Nad (great big sound) or shall we say Big Bang.  Obviously scientists are blank about any information before the big bang and correctly so because the Vedant says that physical world at the sublest  level prior to Nad could not have been known through senses unless the creation of `budhhi’ was complete which according to Vedanta comes a little later than the Big Bang and few other elements of creation.

 

The reason why Vedantis have been able to experience and describe the story of creation from one single `Principle – the Brahman’ – is that they followed holistic approach of investigation as against the reductionist approach of the scientists.  This is contrary to their own (scientists) faith that the collection of parts of a body is not the total body or in modern terms, the totality is more than the collection of all material atoms.

 

In order to make the reading smooth we will first discuss the Vedantic description of the creation in a systematic traditional way and then try to explain it in the context and language of the modern sciences.

 

As has been indicated earlier each and every object, living or inert, is made up of permutations and combinations of three attributes Sattva, Raj and Tam.  Mahattattva now creates two (types of these combinations).

 

The `Maya’ has excessive `Pure Sattva’ and only traces of Raj (the action) and Tam (the gravitational) elements and this results in the creation of Trinity – the Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh or the Eshwar, Hiranyagarbha and Virat.  Because of the lack of Raj and Tam, the Trinity is not visible to human senses.

 

The other combination from Mahattatva is called `Avidya’ and although it still contains largely `Pure Sattva’ but contains relatively more Tam – the inertial or potentially matter producing attribute.  It is for this reason the Avidya is called `malin sattva’ as against in the Trinity.

 

The `Avidya’ is now the direct cause for the creation of five great physical ‘elements’  called ___________ (space), ______ (air), ________ (fire), _________ (water) and ______ (earth).  But remember these are not the actual physical elements represented by the corresponding names in the material world.  They are basically the subtle forms and may be identified by their tanmatras (the subtle forms) called the sound (_____) , contact (________), form/shape (_______), flavour (_______) and smell (______).  It is the panchikaran* (______________)  process (the mixing together of in prescribed proportions, five elements) that creates the actual physical elements space, air, fire, water and earth.

 

Panchikaran process comprises mixing of one half of an element with one-eights of the other four e.g.

 

Physical earth (inert matter) is formed by the combination of 50% of earth, 12.5% space, 12.5% air, 12.5% fire, 12.5% water in their subtle forms.

 

After the Panchikaran, further expansion and conglomeration of the same very elements results in the formation of ___(Worlds) viz. _____________________________________ and also the seven under worlds.  And in one of the _________i.e., Prithvi, the humans, animals, birds, insects / germs etc. and the trees/plants etc. are formed.  These four (types of creations on earth are based on how the birth of these takes place i.e., ____(fully formed body in the womb), ________(from egg), ________ (from sweat, dirt etc.), _______ (from the earth through seeds/roots).  Their sequence is further expanded in table A7.1*

 

The other branch in the creation tree (A7) consists of senses, physiological faculties and the mind intellect equipments which form an important and essential subject of the Vedanta.  It is on the basis of these that detailed psychological studies have been carried out in Hindu philosophies to pronounce various ethics, living codes, human interactions etc.  These topics will be discussed in detail latter but we may like to mention at this point that senses, mind, intellect etc. are called subtle body in Vedantic literature and they are created directly from the `great subtle elements’ without the process of panchikaran as shown in table A7.2.

 

New the sequence of creation will be discussed in little more detail in the context of technicalities of modern sciences.

 

Let us first consider three elements of table A6 Viz. _______________________________________________.  These  three elements exist / appear to exist prior to the creation of `subtle space’ i.e., the great sound of the Vedanta.  They existed before the big-bang of cosmology and hence the un-explained 10____ seconds between the zero time and the time of big-bang will continue to exist in the present methodology of scientific approach.  Two un-solvable problems arise

 

i)        Scientists still insist that the origin of this universe must be some fundamental particle / particles, i.e., matter.

 

If that is so then how to decide that that particular particle is the ultimate individual particle.  In fact our intellect should then be considered the product of that ultimate particle.  And since the `created’ cannot know its `creator’ we will never know this particle.  A further confusion arises because of the mass-energy inter-convertability.  Since energy /wave is subtler than any matter particle, there has to be a sequence of creation between the two and the concept of dual nature of wave-particle of matter can be only of theoretical nature without being definite representations of two physical quantities – for which scientists have always condemned the ancient principles of physical phenomena including that of God.

 

ii)      Second important point is – be it a fundamental particle, energy or even the single law of any future unified theory, the question of who created that particle or principle? Ancients replied this question by saying the `God’.  Of course we have to understand what is the meaning / concept behind this single word. Vedanta has done it more scientifically.

 

We discuss below these and other principles from Vedanta described in the scientific terminology.  We ill do so sequentially (wherever sequence is indicated).

 

The Brahma is in the nature of unknown and unknowable by our intellect and hence is different than whatever we know of or will ever know.  Even the usage of term Brahma etc. or the experience of Him that we obtain in the state of meditation is not the `true Brahma’ is an effect.

 

`It’ may be known only through the process of negation e.g. we can say that physical things and phenomena are not the Brahma.  Neither is `He’  any energy form, word, name, light, sound or any thing that we can ever think of or imagine.  `He’ transcends all this and yet exists all the time, pervades all the places / even beyond the space that may exist beyond our known or imagined space and is the only basis.

 

So when we experience Him, it is only the effect and in the moments of experience we have no words or expressions because `It’ is in-expressible, `Brahma’ is the `whole’ from which everything originates and ultimately everything merges in it.  And during all these happenings `It’ remains unaffected, infinite and witness to all the happenings.

 

______________ (Brahma with potential) – The Brahma now manifests `Himself’ with `His’  `potential’ powers, hence the first stage that we can express in words.  But remember these potential powers are inherent in Him and were always there.  The powers / energy potentials exist uniformly in the infiniteness of unknowable `Braham element’.  In scientific terms it means that there can be no force or action (which can arise only in the presence of a non-uniformly distributed potential) and hence for senses and intellect it is still invisible and hence the potentialities of Brahma viz. Prakriti andPurusor Prakriti and Chetan or Maya and Chetan are termed __________________ and ______________________ they are also eternal.

 

_____________________________________

_____________________________________

 

_________ is really a characteristic  state of Brahma which in the absence of any activity may be termed as `ground state’ of the universe.

 

Let us try to identify the types of potentials (energy) that `Prakriti’ and `Chetan’ are.  The `Prakriti’ and `Chetan’ are different in the sense that these two potentials cannot be added together although they always exist together.  And in the ground state their presence together does not affect each other, i.e., both the potentials lie in their inactive state.

 

Prakriti is however not a single potential.  It is the presence together (uniformly distributed) of different potentials (gunas)/viz. Sattwa, Rajas, and Tamas.  These three gunas can be easily identified, in their activated state as `light’ Kinetics/activity (_______) inertia/gravitational etc. and this activated state is the `Mahattatva’ or Eshwar.

 

Mahattatva  or Eshwar:- The `Mahattatva’ is the first excited state of the universe and the beginning of the creation (__________).  But this excitement comes somewhat in a `quantum mechanical’ manner because it does happen without any extraneous supply of energy to  the ground state of three gunas.  This would be contrary to the principles of classical physics.  In quantum physics world though , such happenings will not have zero probability.
Vedantins on the other hand accept it as God’s will (____________) Whether it is quantum mechanical initiation or God’s will, in practical terms it all amounts to un –explainable happening.  The same has been termed in other Indian philosophies variously as ________(sudden), _______ (Time) etc.

 

 

There is however are important difference between the quantum world of sciences and the sudden beginning of the world from the __________ in Vedanta.  In Vedanta, the sudden happening is really not so sudden because  the `Consciousness element’ is there and it appears to be the inspiration of the beginning of ________________ (the big bang).

 

Let us now proceed to express scientifically the elements (_______________) that exist in table A7.  In table A7.2 we have, for the sake of clarity put up  vedantic and equivalent words for A6.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ADHYATMA  YOG

 

Part I – Dual Nature of Body and Mind; Oneness in Field Theory

Dwait – Adwait

Contact: <sagardwi@yahoo.com>

 

—Whither ‘Matter or Wave’? Is there a common ground?

These questions, knowingly or unknowingly, have been asked for the last many millennia. Ancients generally attached less importance to the matter and accorded primacy to the invisible forms of thoughts, Soul, God and their inter-relationship. These, in the present day understanding, can be dealt with only in some sort of wave form.

 

In Newton’s world (16th century), the pendulum swung to the other extreme so that he even postulated the corpuscle nature of light which has now been accepted as an electro-magnetic (EM) radiation. Later in the 19th century, Maxwell equations firmly established the wave nature of all EM radiations. The wave nature of these radiations however failed to explain certain important phenomena viz ‘Black body radiation’, ‘Photo-electric effect’ etc. The latter could be dealt with only by taking a kind of particle (called photon – a mass less energy bundle) nature of radiation proposed by Max Planck considered to be the father of quantum theory.

 

With de-Broglie came the concept of wave nature associated with particles ie that matter particles may posses some wave like properties. And thus in principle, matter and wave appear to be two facets of the same coin. They may be complementary rather than adversaries.

 

The moral of the above story is that different perceptions, even seemingly contradictory, should not be discarded off-hand. More importantly, different perceptions may apply to different circumstances (the principle followed by Jains in their SATYAWAD).

 

There was another important concept brought about by Einstein in his mass-energy relation (E=mc**2) which did much to integrate matter and wave.,  both  now representing energy bundle and can be treated as such. Quantum field theory has done exactly the same.

 

Let us see where physics stands today. The search is for unraveling                                                                                the mysteries of the Universe (—-the infinite). And for this purpose it has gone deeper and deeper in the womb of nucleus on the one hand, and farther and farther into the deep recesses of the galactic world on the other. We may summarize these achievements as follows:

 

All physical world can be dealt with by four type of force fields viz the Weak and the Strong nuclear forces; the Electromagnetic field; and the Gravitational field. They form four basic pillars of any future unified theory/law of the universe. The first three have already been unified through quantum electromagnetic field theory. But at the present, the gravitational field which deals with the large heavenly bodies stands on its own.

 

‘We may thus one day in future be able to present a unified principle (- a single law) through which each and every physical phenomenon can be explained. This is the dream of any serious scientist of the present day. (By now at least four or five such principles have been declared, and Nobel Prize collected. All these were however found deficient and finally rejected. The search however continues for the new one (the latest to my information is the idea of ‘Superstrings’).’

 

But on that judgment day when the ‘ultimate law’ is discovered, some one may stand up and ask the oft-repeated question ‘whence it came from?’ and we would be back to the square one.

Remember also that in this whole game of super-universal theories, the real player viz the human being (with the Consciousness) gets left out.

 

Humans essentially comprise body, mind-intellect ‘plus’. In this simple scheme of things, the mind-intellect equipment is nothing but an expression for the thought flow processes or simply thought waves (at the perception/reception stage of mind or the decision making stage of the intellect). Thus we have a lump of mass called ‘body’, and the thought waves (the electro-magnetic waves) emanating from the mind-intellect equipment. Scientifically both these can be treated as energy densities. Unfortunately the ‘plus’ factor which may account for the consciousness factor in human beings does not explicitly figure out in the present day scientific scheme of things.

 

 

I may like to record in here a simple but an important calculation based on Einstein mass-energy relation:

‘If we completely eliminate one dead human body of nearly 80kg and try to convert it into electricity, then according to calculations based on mass-energy relationship, we should be able to supply about 10**11 kW-hr of electricity – enough to burn One kW heater for day and night for the entire population of this world.’

And to this if we add energy contents of thoughts and consciousness of an individual to his body equivalent energy, obviously there is huge energy built up in the space within the human body. We are in a sense talking about the energy equivalent of Vedantic ‘Sthool, Sookshma, and Karan shariras(body).

 

Hence emerges a simple model of universe viz all objects of this world, living or non-living, may essentially  be thought of as isolated spaces of high energy density embedded in a vastly expanded uniform energy density fluid (the Pragyan Ghan of Vedanta).

All this energy form, without the Consciousness, of the ‘Brahmand’ is called ‘Prakriti’ or ‘Maya’, and the Consciousness manifestation in this Prakriti is called Eshwar or God. (but remember this is not the vedantic ‘Brahma’ which is really the base (aadhaar) that holds or sustains both Prakriti and Eshwar).

The same model that we have created for cosmos may be miniaturized for individual humans i.e. we are now talking about the individual body (all three) as delimited part of Prakriti and the individual consciousness as part of the universal consciousness Eshwar.

 

Let us now give some thoughts to the implications of theory of relativity. As per the theory of relativity, at very high speeds (as fraction of speed of light), space contracts and time shortens. And in a state of highest concentration of mind, an observer (rather his mind/thought) can travel at a very high speed – even faster than light; by retaining this concentration for some time, the observer is thus able to contract the infinitely large space and millions billions of years within his easy reach. This then portends the possibility of being able to see past and future events in all ‘Brahmand’. Thus may also be explained the mystic predictions of ancient sages.

 

While physicists may have perceived the humans as mere physical objects, biologists have made tremendous efforts to explore the internal structure of the human body. Genetics is one aspect of such studies which has overshadowed all others. In Genome, the DNA – a long chain of molecules – is the only link between physics and life. But DNA is important because it contains genetic codes which regulate each and every human trait. In a way it is life because life depends on its continuous replication, and it does so without any let or hindrance (it operates on a merry-go philosophy).

 

DNA is a double stranded helical structure cross-linked by sub-units called adenine, guanine, thymine, and cytosine arranged in pairs. The order of the rungs forms a code (information code) called ‘gene’. In spite of its complex structure we may not forget that the ultimate basic unit is atom (or nucleus). So if genes are coded then atoms and nuclei also be coded ie they contain basic information.

 

Another feature of DNA is that it can copy itself faithfully and does so continuously during one’s life time but in the process of copying, it continues to reproduce a large number of wrong copies. These wrong copies do not survive until one of them lives on to mutate the species. Mutation is a very very slow process and as we know, during the last 40000 yrs or so there have been very few genetic changes in homo-sapiens-sapiens.

 

The important point however is that the generation of a large number of wrong copies may literally create, albeit temporarily, all the known past genetic structures and also all the hither to unknown future genetic structures. Does it not then point to the fact that a human being contains all the experiences/information that all species ever experienced or will ever experience. This may perhaps be called a phenomenon of knowing all about past and future births.

 

We may thus conclude that behind all the successes (and they are enormous) of scientists in their exploration of the infinite, one question still remains ‘what ticks the unified theory (if and when it comes)? And on a human level what ticks DNA/gene.

In scientific terms we may give it a name – information or intelligence and then define and then define this whole world including all living beings simply as “energy and information”.

.We now turn our attention to how spiritualists see this world and human beings in particular.

Spiritualist in general and ancient Indians in particular looked for scientific and  philosophical (in that time and space) explanations of this infinite universe and its ultimate relationship with the individuals. The ultimate aim was to find a way of living through this relationship that would create a perfect harmony with the infinite.

 

The ultimate aim of a scientist and the spiritualist is thus same viz to explore the mysteries of this universe with a view to make human life happier. And yet there are significant differences in their methodology and the tools of investigation. They also use different language but this may be more so due to different space-time parameters in which they operated.

 

A spiritualist accepts the vastness of this universe and starts with the assumption that there must be some unfathomable universal supreme power that drives (ticks) each and every big and small event of this universe*. And he uses his extra-sensory powers to establish a totality of relationship.

A scientist on the other hand starts his search with individual objects or events and expands it to encompass more varied parts and objects, hoping ultimately to be able to explain the whole. And then of course to seek an answer to ‘who is the ultimate driver (tricker). A scientist uses external physical tools for making his observations as against the intuitive powers of a spiritualist.

 

In a simple illustration let us consider two pyramids joined base to base. A spiritualist starts his explorations from top towards bottom while scientist goes from bottom towards top. Since the scientist does not want to look back, he does not see and therefore does not recognize any role for the spiritualist.

 

Let me conclude by saying that the aims of a spiritualist and a scientist are same and their methods are more of a complimentary nature than of adversaries. [It is often said that spiritualists start with a blind faith and are therefore irrationalists. This is not correct because all rationalism itself starts with some assumptions which may be considered to be blind faith]. Furthermore a spiritualist does not deny the reason but extends it to forces beyond reason viz intuition to confirm the findings of reasoning and indeed becomes the only source of knowledge where reason fails to solve the mystery.

 

 

 

  • Jainism and Buddhism although do not clearly propound the existence of such a universal element – and yet there are concepts such as collectivism of individual souls in Jainism. In Buddhism too, the sufferings of an individual due to actions in the previous birth and transmigration of soul is indicative of universal force.

 

 

 

 

Atma and Parmatma revisited:

 

Let us consider ‘life’ in the context of human beings!

Is it body? Is it heart? Is it brain?

The answer to all above questions would be no because at the time of death all of them are physically there and yet man is dead. Could it be ‘mind and intellect’? Mind and intellect in Hindu spiritualism is described thought waves (Chitta Vritti), and we know that thought waves may be controlled for very long times (as practiced by Yogis) without killing a person. Even the senses cannot be life of a person because again all the sense organs are intact immediately after the death.

 

In sciences some how the term life is always used vaguely; perhaps because it is taken to be integrated within the molecules DNA/genes without realizing that DNA/genes are merely a collection of inert atoms. The life is certainly very very precious and definitely not the inert body-mind-intellect equipment.

As a matter of fact life is the enlivener of the inert body-mind-intellect and therefore cannot be the same. The concept of non-separate identity of life is therefore unacceptable. And this enlivener of individual is called Atma in Indian spiritualism. A term soul has been used in Christianity. If we look for a similar ticker of life of this infinite universe, we find the word Parmatma (the great Atma) or God or Allah in other religions. This Parmatma is the source of infinite energy that pervades the whole universe and ticks the activities of stars, and all the living and non-living beings. It is also the cause of all the field forces – nuclear, electromagnetic, and gravitational.

 

The question is what is the use of these words and concepts if we cannot visualize them nor ordinarily comprehend them? We may not forget that we have never seen many of the atomic and sub-atomic particles (or may we call them force fields) and yet we accept their existence. For this purpose let us try to visualize a relationship between the Atma and Parmatma i.e. the life force of an individual and that of the universe:

a)                  The nature of the Atma in all beings is similar and these are parts of the same infinite Parmatma (vishisht Adwaitvad).

b)                  The Atma in each being and non-being is the same as Parmatma (Adwaitvad).

c)                  The Atma of the individuals are different but they get their essence only from Parmatma Dwaitvad).

d)                 In  Jainism all the Atmans are different and their collectivism determines the activities of this universe.

e)                  In Christianity and Islam the only link of Parmatma with this world is through His son and messenger respectively. The soul or the spirit (i.e. Atma in the present context) does not have a direct relationship with the Parmatma.

 

The consequences of the concept of the Atma and Parmatma in Hinduism are tremendously gratifying though:

Since all the Atmans are same or similar in nature and some how or the other are related to Parmatma – the feeling of love and compassion, among the human beings, is imbibed in a natural way, and when Atman merges with the Parmatman, all beings are in harmony with the infinite nature.

 

One thing is certain that Atman/Parmatman as tickers of life are real (they are cause not the effect) but they acquire practical significance when spiritualist assigns them certain attributes viz compassion, tolerance, truth, joy etc. This then becomes the basis of harmony among individuals and their surroundings.

 

That spiritualism is the basis of all goodness and its overall importance has also been indicated by many in modern times and may have been reflected in following quotes:

 

“There has not been one patient whose problem in the last resort was not that of finding a religious outlook on life. It is safe to say that every one of them fell ill because he had lost that which the living religions of every age have given to their followers and none of them has really healed who did not regain his religious outlook.”              Carl Jung

[Also from Nietzsche quotes B,C,D – pp 149-150.]

 

Let us now try to visualize the concept of Atman/Parmatman from philosophical point of view:

“OUM Purnmidam Purnmadam———————-              Isha Upanishad

“Anoraniyam Mahato Mahiyan———————–              Kath Upanishad

 

These one’s point to the infiniteness of the Parmatman/Atman (we may think of universal pervasive gravitational, electro-magnetic, nuclear field forces; in a correct context these should be taken as the first manifestation powers of Parmatman.

 

“Dharmadharmo sukham duhkham————————      Ashtavakra Sanhita

“Na Prithvi na jalam——————————————      ,,  ,,   ,,         ,,      ,,

 

Thus Atman/Parmatman is only witness (it is cause not the effect). This also implies that body-mind-intellect cannot be the Atman. Another name very commonly used for the Parmatman is the Super-consciousness. This definition of Super-consciousness becomes more intelligible when expressed as super-intelligence. It would really mean that all consciousness, subconscious, and even unconscious memory is within our reach. (Here comes the concept of “Aham Brahmasmi”).

 

A question may arise ‘if the Atman is only ‘Drishtaa’ (the Watcher or Sakshi), how would it affect all the activities?’

It really does not. Atman/Parmatman is Nishkriya (inactive). Everything happens by It’s mere proximity (sannidhya) because It is Omnipresent. But let us look at it his way. Compare it with a mother who keeps a watchful eye on her children; although she does not say anything but children are cautious if they know that she is watching them.

Another way of looking at it would be to consider the action of the Atman as that of a catalyst in chemical reactions. Thus nothing would happen without it but it does not participate in the reaction itself.

 

 

The nature of Supreme reality Brahma (Parmatman) has been beautifully expressed in Taittareya Upanishad by the following verse:

 

Aanando Brahmeti vyajanat—————————————— etc.

 

Carl Sagan has expressed similar sentiments when he talks about the nature of DNA/gene:

‘The whole strategy of DNA is to prosper now’ or ‘one crisis at a time is life’s motto’.

 

Also,

‘Tyajaiva dhyaanam sarvatra————–etc’ from Ashtavakra Sanhita describes the nature of  Atman as free and blissful. With this realization itself you may live happily forever. And this realization comes when mind is completely merged with the Atman. This means that all the activities of mind are under the direct supervision of the Atman (the all pervasive Seer) which are otherwise directly influenced by the external worldly experiences only. [The filtering by the worldly mind is thus cut off.]

 

To sum up:

‘Live a normal life, thinking reason but acting only after the confirmation of your intuition’.

OR

‘Experience consciously the freedom of body-mind-intellect and feel the natural eternal bliss – no tension during the period of an activity’.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pt II – Charging the humanBattery

Spiritualist view                                             Scientist  view

Parmatman ——– ++                                       Field forces              +

x                        x                                              x

x                        x                                              x

————————-x——————x                                                x

x                                 natural and human created

x                                 in-animate objects

plus                                           x                                             x

in-animate objects      plus                 x                                                x

large amount of natural stored energy                                 stored energy                   open

x                                            x                   terminals

———————————————–x                                           x

plus                                               x                                            x

x                                            x

      Humans                                           x                             Humans   plus additional

human created batteries etc.     _

x                            x

x                             x

x                              x

Atman —————- _ _

 

 

 

 

This universe may be likened to a huge power house of infinitely large battery. In this power house are embedded a large number of inanimate objects as well as human beings. The battery has two open terminals.

 

While spiritualists try to merge (connect) the Atman within the human body with the Permatman, the scientists are busy in creating more small toy batteries but in the process they keep short circuiting the battery ( and thus keep depleting – say by generating pollutants, punching the ozone layer, wasting huge amounts of natural stored energy etc.

 

Before we go through the process of connecting Atman and Parmatman through a human body, let us try to look at some important points in connection with the human body. ( explain how three shariras work and also the functions of charkas etc)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The necessity of Yoga and the age factor:

 

These points are answered in the best way by considering the health of a metal in creep.

 

Even a strong metal under creep stress (just as the stress of life in object world) keeps on weakening with time until it finally fails. And prior to its failure there is a sharp increase in the rate of its softening (weakening), and even before that cavitation (a sort of permanent degradation of material) takes place.

 

A similar fait awaits humans. In the above diagram  if we replace softening and hardening of metal by weakening and strengthening of human body respectively, and then correlate them with human age as follows:

 

1-20 yrs     – There is very little weakening (only strengthening takes place) i.e.

weakening    <<<<      strengthening.

20-45 yrs   – There is a continuous weakening from  day to day stresses of life; This rate increases until a balance is achieved with the strengthening caused by external factors such as food intake. It is during this period that the scars of unhappy shocks of life start the permanent cavitation.

45            – Weakening rate accelerates so that weakening  >>>>  strengthening.

 

We may convert weakening and strengthening into physical parameters viz economic activities ( for keeping and self happy with worldly goods) and metabolic activity ( which provides strength by converting food into energy and protein).

 

  • Thus upto about 20 yrs there is hardly any worry/weakening due to stresses from economic activity and metabolism works well to covert any food into energy/strength.
  • 20-45 yrs: Economic activity increases to match the metabolism.
  • 45-     yrs: Most of the people want to continue their economic activity – sometimes even with a faster pace and are therefore unable to take care of their metabolism which is now decreasing at a faster rate.

 

Prolonging the life curve:

 

The aforesaid discussion makes it clear that the lifespan of a majority of people goes down because of their own makings. Obviously a well organized life style and food habits can prolong the lifespan considerably. The tips given below do help in prolonging the life curve and delay the breaking point (ie death).

While it is necessary to start the development of spiritualist and yogic habits early in life so that they become natural habits in the old age, the mile stone age of 45 yrs or so becomes an extra cause of worry. One should pay more attention to the maintenance of good metabolism by following a balanced routine, beautifully summed up in Geeta:

Uktaahaar vihaarasya, Ukta chastasya karmashu!

Ukta swapnavabodhasch ————-                             6.17

 

 

Much needed support can come from the reduction of economic activity (particular care should be taken to avoid stresses, accidents etc).

 

Is there then any need of spiritualism at the young age?????????

The answer is very much YES! For one thing the cavitation rate discussed above can be reduced and furthermore, the projected acceleration in deteriorating metabolism can be taken care of from here.

And how about the childhood????????

Again the answer is YES! Because the best beneficial effects are obtainable from the Yoga if it becomes a way of life – theNatural Wayof Life. It should really become a nature to be in a yogic mode all the time – Sahaj Yoga. By starting it in the childhood its natural adaptation is easily obtained by the middle ages.

[Anotherway to think about it is ‘peace and happiness are possible only if the home ie the body, where the Soul is, is in a good condition. This is achievable if its foundations at the childhood are strong, and its maintenance is taken care of in the young age. This will then considerably slow down the crumbling in the old age.

 

Marx:

It is said and insisted upon that the Marxism has no place for spiritualism or religion. This does not appear to be true as may be deduced from the following:

“All that can be achieved in the direction of making us more free is to conduct his metabolism rationally————with a minimum expenditure of energy and under conditions most dignified and adequate to human nature.

Yet it will still remain the kingdom of necessity. Only outside and beyond it can that development of human faculties begin which constitutes an end in itself – the true kingdom of freedom.”

“The kingdom of freedom actually begins only where drudgery————-ends; it thus lies quite naturally beyond the sphere of proper material production.”

 

Das Capital vol III/2 (1984)-pp355

 

 

 

 

YOGA

 

Yoga is the best way for living your true and total life; Aasan, Pranayam, Bhakti, Dhyan etc are only means of attaining natural habits of living a yogic life.

Yoga joining Atman with Parmatman.

[Caution- Most of what we call yoga viz Aasan, Pranayam etc are only preparatory to attain the state of Samadhi and whence to become one with the Brahman.]

The so called achievements of yoga viz health, peace, tranquility etc are only by products of yogic life.

 

 

Definitions:

 

Health – When both mental and physical health are good, we may claim to be healthy.

Normally we think it is the well being of the gross body that amounts to good health. Nay,   You may have noticed that many a times, you don’t have any physical problems but when you get up in the morning, you don’t feel well. It is simply because your mental health is not good.

Svasth – It defines not only health but also the cure ie sva + asth means seated within one’s ownself.

The words ‘tantra’ and ‘mantra’ are often used in yoga procedures, know their meanings:

Tantra –  tan + tar  meaning freedom of the body.

Mantra – man + tar  meaning freedom of mind.

Peace:

‘Na shantim labhate mudho yatah shamitumichhati.

Dhirastattvam vinishchitya sarvada shantmansah.’

 

‘Na vikshepo na chaikagrayam natibodho na mudhata.

Na sukham na cha va duhkhmupshantasya yoginah.’

 

Tranquiliy:

‘Antarvikalpashunyasya bahih svachhandcharinah.’ (free of doubts, moves about freely).

 

 

 

Theory and practice of yoga

Yoga is defined by Patanjali as:

‘Yogaschittavritti Nirodhah.’ Control of thought waves.

 

‘Tada drishtuh svarupeavasthanam.’ One abides in his real nature.

 

‘Naavirato dushcharitan naashanto naasmahitah.

Naashantmaanso vapi pragyanenainamaapnuyat.’

 

Eight limbs of yoga:

Yama, Niyam, Aasana, Pranayam, Pratyahar, Dharan, Dhyan, Samadhi.

 

This causes an evolution of man from wicked natured to a natural free man (in this very life and also beyond     ie     ‘Dushta >> Sajjan >> Shanta >> Moksha’.

 

Ten ‘Yamas’(abstensions):

Non-Violence(in thoughts and practice), Truth, No stealing, Celibacy (in thoughts and actions—–; regulated sex with wife is also considered to be celibacy), Kindness to all, Simplicity, Forgiveness, Tolerance, Regulated and simple food habits, Purity/cleanliness (not as a ritual but in thoughts as well).

 

Note:

Non-violence and celibacy need a little clarification here. Non-violence in a real sense is non-harming, not giving pains to others; not even thoughts of such kind should come to one’s mind.

Celibacy is another misunderstood word. It does not necessarily mean bachelor or unmarried. There has to be a complete self control on sexual activities. There is no need to kill reasonable biological needs when they arise in a natural way  ——  but such activities have to be within a married life. Also the desire for such acts should not be aroused untimely, needlessly or as a matter of mere habit. We may remember that procreation is a part of our ‘Karma’. In the process of this karma, if pleasure is generated let it be so.

 

Ten ‘Niyams’(observances):

Tap, Contentment(with whatever one attains through his hard work and efforts), Devotion in the Supreme universal Truth/Power, Charity (voluntary and without obligations) to the needy, Worship to God, Listening/reading spiritual literature, humility, Thinking about the infiniteness of the Lord, Chanting (Jap), Observing regular fasts.

 

Tap:

The literal meaning of ‘tap’ is generation of heat (ie energy). In spiritual context it means the practice of conservation of energy as in ‘Chakra work out’ etc. Unfortunately many a persons consider ‘tapas’ as means of torturing the body. For example going for extreme kinds of fastings tc may be more harmful to body than doing any good to one’s spiritual well being. Let us always remember that the home of the Atman/Parmatman is this body and doing any harm to this body is an act of violence to the God. The methodology of ‘tapas’ in Sanskrit  also includes ritualistic worship but this will be discussed elsewhere.

 

A tip on controlled diet and fasting:

Consider stomach as a container divided in four parts. Fill two of them with food, one with water and leave one empty for air.

But for this to be most useful, you should assess your capacity for food intake by going through following exercise:

Without any pre-plan and prior thought, start your fast one day. You will after sometime feel hungry as a matter of habit but it will subside later. Now continue fasting until your stomach starts shouting that I am hungry. At this stage you would be able to understand your intrinsic feelings for hunger and assess your capacity for food intake.

Contentment:

‘Santosh’(ie contentment) has many facets e.g. acceptance of sorrows and happiness, gain and loss (opposites) with equanimity, control of desires – although difficult, would certainly lead to contentment in life and hence the happiness.

 

 

 

In fact control of desires itself would control all the others and therefore let us dwell a little on desires (with some elaborations)

The business of desires is a complex one. They always emanate at the level of mind even when inspired by sense objects. Senses are instrumental in establishing contact between the sense object and the mind through nerve cables. Mind then analyzes the details of the object and inspires desires to obtain it (mind here includes the intellect ie ‘Budhi’ as well). Although, the pleasure obtained by sense objects is transient, the action of the concerned sense organ is a natural one (it is doing it’s ‘Karma’).

There is however another way whereby the mind prevaricates the object desire and then longs for it. In this case also a person enjoys the whole act only for a short duration but then he suffers because most of the time his desire is not fulfilled according to his expectations.

One may define these two types of desires as real and virtual respectively. While both real and virtual desires provide only temporary pleasures, the second one causes more sufferings and should be controlled by the dictum “allow the senses to do their Karma and the mind its own”. For example don’t eat because your mind or habit tells you to, instead eat when your stomach tells you to. And in the process of eating if tongue enjoys it, let it be so.

 

Asana and Pranayam: –       to be appended.

 

Pratyahar:

“Svavishayaa samprayoge chittasvarupaanukaar ivendriyanam pratyaharah”

(When mind is withdrawn from sense objects, sense organs also withdraw. This is pratyahar. This consequence follows from the fact that all observations of sense organs are given a meaning only through the analysis of mind.)

“Tatahparmavashyatendriyanam”

(Total control of senses is thus attained).

 

The practice of sense control (pratyahar):

a)                  The process of self control starts from watching one’s mind for some time. The mind then calms down and starts  becoming calm.

b)                  Do all your karma (actions) as dedication to God.

c)                  Breath in through mouth and hold it in the throat, (now close the mouth and breath out through the nose but feeling as though inhaled air is going from throat to legs etc) allow it to go to heart, then to navel, on to ‘Kundalini’—–to Mooladhar. Allow it to spread sideways in the waist region, then pass on to toes through thighs, knees and legs. Hold it their for some time.

Dharan: (concentration)

In this process you hold your mind within a centre of spiritual consciousness in the body, or fix it on some divine form within or outside the body. (Centres of spiritual consciousness are the seven lotuses – ‘Chakras’ within the body).

 

 

 

Dhyan (meditation):

“Tatra prtyayaikataanataa dhyanam”

(An unbroken thought toward the object of concentration.)

 

Samadhi:

“Tadevaarthamaatranirbhaasam svarupshunyamiva samadhih”

(When during the meditation, the true nature of the object shines forth, not distorted by the mind of the perceiver, that is Samadhi.)

 

[Parmaatma aur Jivaatma ki ekta ke vishay me nishchayatmac budhi ka uday hona hi Samadhi hai.]

[Is dasha me purush ko ye Parmatma apne Atmarupa se anubhav hone lagata hai.]

 

Recharging (rejuvenating) the body:

It is done through ‘chakra’ work out. (Initially this process should be gone through under the guidance of some experienced guru.)

 

In essence in this case the ‘kundalini’ is awakened and the energy released thereby is distributed through ‘Sushumna nari’. The sequence is as follows:

Mooladhar (kundalini) >> Svadhisthan >> Mani >> Anahat >> Vishudhi >> Agya >> Sahashrar. [For charka positions see the appendix.]

{ the large quantum of energy that remains locked in ‘Kundalini’ is released and redistributed throughout the body.} This upward distribution is possible through only a reversible process of thermodynamics ie Carnot cycle.

 

 

Quote:  “Knowledge without practice accompanying it is superior to practice without knowledge;      Practice with knowledge is superior to knowledge without practice accompanying it.”                  Yoga Vashishtha

 

Other quotes:

 

“Allow external space to pervade the internal space, fresh air in Prana, external heat to stomach heat, external water within the internal, and earth to the gross body.

[Specified places———-Foot to knee is earth, knee to pelvis is water, pelvis to heart is fire, heart to eyebrows is air, forehead region is sky.]