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Books > Philosophy > Tantra > Science Consciousness Freedom
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Science Consciousness Freedom
Science Consciousness Freedom
Description

From the Jacket:

The purpose of this work is to carve out a path for achieving the integration of man, a multi-dimensional being, in the background of the three worlds - physicality, psychicality and spirituality. These three worlds are the different facets of man as a multi-dimensional being. His body is an extended substance of the physical world, his mind or inner self belongs to the psychical and moral world, and when man rises above his body and mind to realize the ultimate truth, he enters into the spiritual world. Full fledged evolution of all these facets makes a man perfect. He then realize that the said three worlds are linked together like gems on a strings. In this work the author has tried to analyse the said three worlds and bind them into an integrated whole.

Experts Review:

"For this book the relevant questions is : What is the universe and why? So far scientists engaged in this field of investigation occupied themselves seriously with the answering of the what part of the question and have just started to answer the why part, which should normally engaged the philosophers. But the latter, barring a few, are not fully equipped to go deep into the what part revealed by the scientists. The gap has to be filled up. Sri Basu has taken courage to bring the what and why parts in one comprehensive volume, and try to answer both. In fact modern science and philosophy are perhaps talking about the same thing but in different languages. The attempt to bridge the language gap is what is most important."

Dr. Sushil Kumar Mukherjee

About the Author:

Sri Manoranjan Basu (1920-1992), the author of this profound work, was not only a scholar of great attainments but also a researcher and sadhaka of no mean stature. Among his several learned publication are Gita Vahini; Tantras: A General Study; Ramakrishna's Spiritual Practices: A Study; Ramakrishna Sadhan Parikrama (in Bengali), Paschatya Darsaner Itihas : Kant and Hegel (in Bengali) and, above all, Fundamentals of the Philosophy of Tantras.

Preface

The dawn of intelligence in course of human development seems to coincide with the wonderment with which he looked at what was happening around him on a smaller scale in the solar system, and on a much grander scale in the system of celestial bodies, which revealed themselves with all their grandeur and beauty at night. And his mind was agitated by many questions for which he sought satisfactory answers. That was the beginning of science. His questions were simple but apt, somewhat as follows: What is the origin and fate of this universe and what for? What has this tiny man to do in it? What is the hidden purpose of creation, existence and destruction of life?

Of all scientists, the physicists, the early astronomers and later cosmologists came to be equipped, in course of time, with better understanding of the universe and with better knowledge to answer these questions. In fact, a group of highly talented and intellectually superior physicists and cosmologists came to the fore, just to tackle these questions in particular. As more and more refined experiments brought new knowledge, the old theories were either rejected or modified yielding place to new theories. Often theories were put forward exclusively on 'thought process' as Einstein did and experi- mentalists were anxious to test them. In this process appeared a team of talented mathematical physicists who could play with existing theories and discover new and exciting ones. Not all of those theories were amenable to experimental tests, but provided scope for high order intellectual exercises, especially for the younger scientists.

Through painstaking and persistent efforts in the field of theori- zing and testing for three hundred odd years, western science has made a number of discoveries which stand at the moment of time as pillars of science, in the sense that the edifice of modem science rests on them. The following is a list of such pillars envisaged as 'Superb' by Penrose: Euclidean geometry, Archimedean statics, Galilean dynamics, Kepler's laws, Newtonian mechanics, Maxwell's electromagnetic theory, Einstein's theory of relativity and quantum electrodynamics. Then there are other theories listed below which though untested, promise to supplant old ones and establish them- selves. This kind of replacement of old theories by new ones again waiting to be replaced by newer ones is the game which science plays and from which science also draws inspiration and nourishment. Penrose categorizes these, such as Gell-Mann-Zweig quark model, quantum chromodynamics, as 'useful' ones. As a result, there are still others, listed below, that are waiting to find entry into the realm of science. To this category belong the 'Tentative' ones, namely, Kaluza-Klein theories, Mass-Space-Duplex theory, Super-symmetry/ Supergravity, string theories and the grand unified theories. There are many other theories but those that belong to either of the categories 'tentative' and 'useful' have been discussed in this book. These belonging to the 'Superb' category are basic to the understanding of science and cannot obviously be avoided. In fact, they have taken a prominent position in the book.

To bring all these quite complicated and not-so-easily compre- hended pursuits of science, speaking in terms of still more complex mathematical languages is a gigantic task. The attempt made by the author of this book in this direction is, therefore, a laudable one. There are pitfalls and there is a chance that one may slip into one of them. So long as the author is aware of them he can steer himself clear. This is still more laudable on the part of the author.

There are certain concepts which one has to grapple with in understanding the laws and logic of science. For instance, reality and absoluteness, symmetry and parity, true nature of matter, the quantum state of matter as a result of the uncertainty principle, general theory of relativity and gravity.

There is a consensus that the creation of the universe started with a Big Bang, after which the universe has been expanding. At the beginning was the gravity. As expansion proceeded, other forces than gravity began to appear sequentially at certain stages of expansion. The sequence is: Gravity, strong nuclear, weak nuclear and electro- magnetism all unified; era of quantum gravity-Gravity separates; era of GUT ~ Strong nuclear force separates-electromagnetism and weak nuclear force separate. We are now at a stage where all the four forces are operative in different situations. Logically, one would expect that if the appearance of the four systems of interaction is as theorized above following a sequential pattern, one would expect their unification and be able to reproduce, at least theoretically, the condition of the universe at zero-time. Einstein spent the last forty years of his life to achieve this goal, but failed. Even though Einstein contributed substantially to the development of the quantum theory, he was skeptical of it because of the indeterminacy resulting from the principle of uncertainty. Rooted in the principle of determinism on which is based the general theory of relativity, Einstein could not agree to believe that natural laws could be deducible on the basis of the quantum theory. The latter, in the hands of such stalwarts as Bohr, Schrodinger, Heisenberg, Dirac, Born and others, has proved to be one of the strongest pillars on which the edifice of modern science stands.

Big-Bang theory, even though supported by many evidences, theoretical as well as experimental, is not unequivocally trouble-free. Isotropicity is not accounted for by the Big-Bang theory. ot only so, there is the impossible conclusion that between zero time and 0.000 I second, for instance, the speed of expansion far exceeds the velocity of light. The singularity point, i.e., the situation at zero time, is attended with the impossibility of infinite density of matter and radiation and temperature.

In view of these difficulties, a new model, the Mass-Space- Duplex model, with mutually invert universes, has been considered in some detail. This is a dynamic model, which presupposes the existence of primeval void out of which the universe is created. The model envisages the existence of anti-matter or anti-particles in the invert universe and that of complementary reactions taking place in the two universes. The author has taken great pains to explain the essential merits of the Mass-Space-Duplex model, but it should be mentioned that "the Mass-Space-Duplex model has not yet been recognized as a viable and testable theory in the scientific world".

The micro-world of the atom appears to be patterned structurally more or less the same way as the macro-world of the universe. The study of nuclear reactions is one of the methods of understanding this pattern. Experiments with particle accelerators at higher and higher energies have revealed the existence of new particles, other than the well-known electrons, protons and neutrons. What is the source of these particles and what does their appearance signify? Theoretical studies have started simultaneously to explain these new facts. At first, there was some confusion and it was considered a baffling exercise to accommodate all the discovered particles in a cogent system. Theoretical physicists have now systematized the experimental data and put forward a consistent theory of particle- particle interaction and the role played by specific gluons in nuclear reactions and in measuring the strength with which particles are held together. The importance of gluons has, therefore, been rightly highlighted by the author. Each of the four types of interactions, namely strong, electromagnetic, weak and gravitational is thus charac- terized by a specific gluon. The field offorce in each case is perceived as the exchange of gluons. In view of the great significance of the hypothesis of gluons, the author has discussed in some detail the part gluons play in the four interactions. Experiments done with ultrahigh energy accelerators show the remarkable phenomenon that all the forces tend to become equal, and gradually all the interactions tend to disappear leaving the gravitational interaction alone to operate. This finding is the basis of the hope of a grand unified theory being realizable.

ntroduction

At the very dawn of our childhood days when we open our eyes we find all around the grand vastness of nature with variegated colours -lofty peak of mountains, vast oceans, rivers surrounded on all sides with deep dense forests and vast sky littered with stars and galaxies. o less fascinating is the suggestion of an implicate discipline in this universe of ours - the recurrence of night and day, ebb and tide, the movement-pattern of celestial bodies and the periodic occurrence of seasons - all bearing testimony to such an order. Naturally our minds get perplexed and filled with 'wonder' and a sense of 'awe'. This 'wonder' and sense of , awe' gave birth to the enquiring mind to solve the riddles of the phenomenal world. This, in brief, is the origin of the physical sciences in the West. Wherein lies the heart of this vast universe? What do we exactly mean by existence? What are the ingredient particles, which make the structure of the universe possible? What is our (individual human beings) place in it?

On the other hand, there are living beings of whom man stands supreme. The bodily organism of man with its various complexities such as veins, sinews, marrow, arteries, blood, spine etc., that form the physical structure of man and his psychical body such as mind, sense of ego (ahamkara), intelligence, sentience and inventive power expressed the urge to discover the basic phenomena of mind and matter - both the outer and the inner worlds. Consciousness, Self and allied problems present before our mind are no less mysterious than our physical universe.

The question naturally arises - what is the relation between the tiny self within and the heavenly choir without? Is there any Creator? Then who .has made all these things possible? What is the source- point of this implicate order? In the tenth Mandala of the Rg Veda, we find the concept of Rta which is rooted in the super-sensuous experience of the sages. Rta is the dynamic rhythmic principle that signifies cosmic order and discipline. Then does this order also govern the life of man and become manifest as a dynamic rhythm in his daily conduct of life? Or things happen by following some fundamental laws? Philosophers and scientists are engaged in finding out solutions to all these questions in each of their own respective ways. Philosophers follow deductive and inductive logic but finally they resort to intuitive- meditative methods to arrive at their desired ends. Scientists, on the other hand, follow empirical-cum-analytical method and try to give a satisfactory explanation of things through the process of experi- mentation, empirical observations and mathematical calculations. If the meaning of life, its values and their realization be the objective end of man, why do not then philosophers, scientists and common sense men meet at a common platform, and through dialogue i.e., through discussion and deliberation arrive at a common point and save the impending danger of total annihilation of the world and its inhabi- tants? Why should we not try our utmost to bring peace to the problem- stricken unruly world? This is the most pertinent problem of the day. The Eastern religious philosophies such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, etc., and each of their branches are essentially concerned with timeless spiritual knowledge that lies beyond the worlds of physicality and psychicality. The world of transcendence cannot be adequately expressed in terms of bare intellectualism and aesthetics. Physics today with its revolutionary concepts of time, space and matter is also pointing to a world-view hitherto unknown in the intellectual history of the West. Enthused over these latest findings, there has been a recent trend among some intellectuals, including some Western scientists, to show the parallels between the world-view suggested by modem physics and that expressed in the Oriental philosophies. They have also explored the various implications of adopting the mystical views in our society.

It is common knowledge that the mechanistic world view is useful for the description of the kind of physical phenomena in a limited sense and hence has been partially useful for dealing with various situations in our daily environment, and it has also proved remarkably successful as a basis for technology. But it is found to be extremely inadequate for the description of physical phenomena at the sub- microscopic level. On the other hand, the 'organic' world-view of the mystics which regards all phenomena in the universe as integral points of an inseparable harmonious whole is rooted in the mystical traditions of meditative states of consciousness. In their description of the world, the mystics use concepts which are derived from these non-ordinary experiences and are found to be inconsistent with the reductionist scientist's description of macroscopic phenomena. The organic world view does not seem to be helpful in constructing machines and coping with the technical problems in an overpopulated world. But, in our daily life both the organic and the mechanistic views of life are valid and useful - one for science and technology in the utilitarian sense in the context of material progress while the other for a balanced and fulfilled spiritual life. It may only be mentioned here that it is in the background of the all-encompassing organic viewpoint that the mechanistic description finds its meaning and limited yet proper place, because it is more fundamental than the mechanistic one.

Classical physics, based on the mechanistic paradigm, can be derived to a great extent from Quantum Theory, which implies the former, but the reverse is not possible. Some take it as the first indication why the world-views of modern physics and Eastern mysticism might be expected to be similar. Both emerge when man steps out to enquire into the essential nature of things - into the heart of the physical universe in physics, into the deeper realms of consciousness in states of meditation - when we discover different kinds of realities behind the superficial mechanistic appearance of our everyday life. Physicists derive their knowledge from experi- ments, spiritualists/mystics have it from meditative or intuitive insights. Both are observations but the object of observation is of course different in the two cases. The mystic looks within and explores his or her consciousness at its various levels, which include the body as the physical manifestation of the mind (in the sense of conscious- ness). The experience of one's body is, in fact, emphasized in many Eastern traditions and serves as the key to the mystical experience of the world. When we are healthy we are hardly aware of the separate parts in our body but feel it as an integrated whole. This awareness generates a feeling of well-being and happiness. Similarly, to a spiri- tual practitioner, the wholeness of the entire cosmos is experienced as an extension of the body. In the words of Lama Govinda:
To the enlightened man ... whose consciousness embraces the universe, to him the universe becomes his 'body', while his physical body becomes a manifestation of the Universal Mind, his inner vision an expression of the highest reality, and his speech an expression of eternal truth and mantric power.

Lama Anagarika Govinda, Foundations of Tibetan Mysticism,
Rider, London, 1973, pg. 220

The physicist begins his enquiry into the essential nature of things by studying the material/physical world. Penetrating into the heart of matter, he sometimes has a glimpse of the unity of all things and events. Moreover, he has also learnt that he himself and his cons- ciousness are integral parts of this unity.

Thus, according to these scholars, the spiritualist/mystic and the physicist seem to arrive at the same conclusion, one starting from the inner realm, the other from the outer world. They also suggest that harmony between these views confirms the ancient Indian wisdom that Brahman, the ultimate reality without, is identical to Alman, the reality within (Jiva Brahmaiva napara).

CONTENTS

 

     
Acknowledgement 7
Preface (Science) by Dr. Sushil Kumar Mukherjee 9
Introduction

 

19
PART I : SCIENCE

 

Section A: Western Science and the Physical Universe 39
1. Sense Perception of Physical Phenomena - Its Limitations 40
2. Laws of Nature - Theories of Creation According to Western Science 53
3. Quantum and Beyond: Gluons and the Grand Unification 66
4. The Universe of Stephen Hawking - Modern Advanced View of Physics 85
5. Concluding Note on the Physical Science 102
Section B: The Indian Vision of the Physical Universe 107
1. Concept of Body - Some Indian Theories 109
2. Theory of Creation-cum-Manifestation According to Indian Philosophical Concepts 117
Section C: The Body, the Mind and the Unconscious 140
1. Life - Its Nature, Origin and Evolution 141
2. Journey into the Brain and the Mind 191
3. Living Organisms - An Integrated Approach 228
4. Psychology of the Unconscious 245
5. Passage from Science to Consciousness

 

254
PART II : CONSCIOUSNESS

 

1. Consciousness - A General Discussion 263
2. Religious Consciousness 272
3. Kundalini or Embodied Consciousness: A Scientific Exposition 285
4. Tantras: Analysis of Consciousness 302
5. Notion of Consciousness and the Integral Consciousness of Sri Aurobindo 323
6. Advaitic View of Consciousness 333
7. Absolute and Modified Consciousness - Advaitic and Other View Points

 

343
PART III : FREEDOM

 

1. Freedom - Introduction 401
2. Freedom - A General Discussion 402
3. Freedom - Existential Point of View 441
4. Freedom - Liberation / Renunciation According to Indian Views

 

471
Prelude to the Conclusion 557
Conclusion 558
Bibliography 587
Index 595
About the Author 605

Sample Pages









































Science Consciousness Freedom

Item Code:
IDE704
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2005
ISBN:
8186569510
Language:
English
Size:
8.9" X 5.8"
Pages:
606
Price:
$40.00   Shipping Free
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From the Jacket:

The purpose of this work is to carve out a path for achieving the integration of man, a multi-dimensional being, in the background of the three worlds - physicality, psychicality and spirituality. These three worlds are the different facets of man as a multi-dimensional being. His body is an extended substance of the physical world, his mind or inner self belongs to the psychical and moral world, and when man rises above his body and mind to realize the ultimate truth, he enters into the spiritual world. Full fledged evolution of all these facets makes a man perfect. He then realize that the said three worlds are linked together like gems on a strings. In this work the author has tried to analyse the said three worlds and bind them into an integrated whole.

Experts Review:

"For this book the relevant questions is : What is the universe and why? So far scientists engaged in this field of investigation occupied themselves seriously with the answering of the what part of the question and have just started to answer the why part, which should normally engaged the philosophers. But the latter, barring a few, are not fully equipped to go deep into the what part revealed by the scientists. The gap has to be filled up. Sri Basu has taken courage to bring the what and why parts in one comprehensive volume, and try to answer both. In fact modern science and philosophy are perhaps talking about the same thing but in different languages. The attempt to bridge the language gap is what is most important."

Dr. Sushil Kumar Mukherjee

About the Author:

Sri Manoranjan Basu (1920-1992), the author of this profound work, was not only a scholar of great attainments but also a researcher and sadhaka of no mean stature. Among his several learned publication are Gita Vahini; Tantras: A General Study; Ramakrishna's Spiritual Practices: A Study; Ramakrishna Sadhan Parikrama (in Bengali), Paschatya Darsaner Itihas : Kant and Hegel (in Bengali) and, above all, Fundamentals of the Philosophy of Tantras.

Preface

The dawn of intelligence in course of human development seems to coincide with the wonderment with which he looked at what was happening around him on a smaller scale in the solar system, and on a much grander scale in the system of celestial bodies, which revealed themselves with all their grandeur and beauty at night. And his mind was agitated by many questions for which he sought satisfactory answers. That was the beginning of science. His questions were simple but apt, somewhat as follows: What is the origin and fate of this universe and what for? What has this tiny man to do in it? What is the hidden purpose of creation, existence and destruction of life?

Of all scientists, the physicists, the early astronomers and later cosmologists came to be equipped, in course of time, with better understanding of the universe and with better knowledge to answer these questions. In fact, a group of highly talented and intellectually superior physicists and cosmologists came to the fore, just to tackle these questions in particular. As more and more refined experiments brought new knowledge, the old theories were either rejected or modified yielding place to new theories. Often theories were put forward exclusively on 'thought process' as Einstein did and experi- mentalists were anxious to test them. In this process appeared a team of talented mathematical physicists who could play with existing theories and discover new and exciting ones. Not all of those theories were amenable to experimental tests, but provided scope for high order intellectual exercises, especially for the younger scientists.

Through painstaking and persistent efforts in the field of theori- zing and testing for three hundred odd years, western science has made a number of discoveries which stand at the moment of time as pillars of science, in the sense that the edifice of modem science rests on them. The following is a list of such pillars envisaged as 'Superb' by Penrose: Euclidean geometry, Archimedean statics, Galilean dynamics, Kepler's laws, Newtonian mechanics, Maxwell's electromagnetic theory, Einstein's theory of relativity and quantum electrodynamics. Then there are other theories listed below which though untested, promise to supplant old ones and establish them- selves. This kind of replacement of old theories by new ones again waiting to be replaced by newer ones is the game which science plays and from which science also draws inspiration and nourishment. Penrose categorizes these, such as Gell-Mann-Zweig quark model, quantum chromodynamics, as 'useful' ones. As a result, there are still others, listed below, that are waiting to find entry into the realm of science. To this category belong the 'Tentative' ones, namely, Kaluza-Klein theories, Mass-Space-Duplex theory, Super-symmetry/ Supergravity, string theories and the grand unified theories. There are many other theories but those that belong to either of the categories 'tentative' and 'useful' have been discussed in this book. These belonging to the 'Superb' category are basic to the understanding of science and cannot obviously be avoided. In fact, they have taken a prominent position in the book.

To bring all these quite complicated and not-so-easily compre- hended pursuits of science, speaking in terms of still more complex mathematical languages is a gigantic task. The attempt made by the author of this book in this direction is, therefore, a laudable one. There are pitfalls and there is a chance that one may slip into one of them. So long as the author is aware of them he can steer himself clear. This is still more laudable on the part of the author.

There are certain concepts which one has to grapple with in understanding the laws and logic of science. For instance, reality and absoluteness, symmetry and parity, true nature of matter, the quantum state of matter as a result of the uncertainty principle, general theory of relativity and gravity.

There is a consensus that the creation of the universe started with a Big Bang, after which the universe has been expanding. At the beginning was the gravity. As expansion proceeded, other forces than gravity began to appear sequentially at certain stages of expansion. The sequence is: Gravity, strong nuclear, weak nuclear and electro- magnetism all unified; era of quantum gravity-Gravity separates; era of GUT ~ Strong nuclear force separates-electromagnetism and weak nuclear force separate. We are now at a stage where all the four forces are operative in different situations. Logically, one would expect that if the appearance of the four systems of interaction is as theorized above following a sequential pattern, one would expect their unification and be able to reproduce, at least theoretically, the condition of the universe at zero-time. Einstein spent the last forty years of his life to achieve this goal, but failed. Even though Einstein contributed substantially to the development of the quantum theory, he was skeptical of it because of the indeterminacy resulting from the principle of uncertainty. Rooted in the principle of determinism on which is based the general theory of relativity, Einstein could not agree to believe that natural laws could be deducible on the basis of the quantum theory. The latter, in the hands of such stalwarts as Bohr, Schrodinger, Heisenberg, Dirac, Born and others, has proved to be one of the strongest pillars on which the edifice of modern science stands.

Big-Bang theory, even though supported by many evidences, theoretical as well as experimental, is not unequivocally trouble-free. Isotropicity is not accounted for by the Big-Bang theory. ot only so, there is the impossible conclusion that between zero time and 0.000 I second, for instance, the speed of expansion far exceeds the velocity of light. The singularity point, i.e., the situation at zero time, is attended with the impossibility of infinite density of matter and radiation and temperature.

In view of these difficulties, a new model, the Mass-Space- Duplex model, with mutually invert universes, has been considered in some detail. This is a dynamic model, which presupposes the existence of primeval void out of which the universe is created. The model envisages the existence of anti-matter or anti-particles in the invert universe and that of complementary reactions taking place in the two universes. The author has taken great pains to explain the essential merits of the Mass-Space-Duplex model, but it should be mentioned that "the Mass-Space-Duplex model has not yet been recognized as a viable and testable theory in the scientific world".

The micro-world of the atom appears to be patterned structurally more or less the same way as the macro-world of the universe. The study of nuclear reactions is one of the methods of understanding this pattern. Experiments with particle accelerators at higher and higher energies have revealed the existence of new particles, other than the well-known electrons, protons and neutrons. What is the source of these particles and what does their appearance signify? Theoretical studies have started simultaneously to explain these new facts. At first, there was some confusion and it was considered a baffling exercise to accommodate all the discovered particles in a cogent system. Theoretical physicists have now systematized the experimental data and put forward a consistent theory of particle- particle interaction and the role played by specific gluons in nuclear reactions and in measuring the strength with which particles are held together. The importance of gluons has, therefore, been rightly highlighted by the author. Each of the four types of interactions, namely strong, electromagnetic, weak and gravitational is thus charac- terized by a specific gluon. The field offorce in each case is perceived as the exchange of gluons. In view of the great significance of the hypothesis of gluons, the author has discussed in some detail the part gluons play in the four interactions. Experiments done with ultrahigh energy accelerators show the remarkable phenomenon that all the forces tend to become equal, and gradually all the interactions tend to disappear leaving the gravitational interaction alone to operate. This finding is the basis of the hope of a grand unified theory being realizable.

ntroduction

At the very dawn of our childhood days when we open our eyes we find all around the grand vastness of nature with variegated colours -lofty peak of mountains, vast oceans, rivers surrounded on all sides with deep dense forests and vast sky littered with stars and galaxies. o less fascinating is the suggestion of an implicate discipline in this universe of ours - the recurrence of night and day, ebb and tide, the movement-pattern of celestial bodies and the periodic occurrence of seasons - all bearing testimony to such an order. Naturally our minds get perplexed and filled with 'wonder' and a sense of 'awe'. This 'wonder' and sense of , awe' gave birth to the enquiring mind to solve the riddles of the phenomenal world. This, in brief, is the origin of the physical sciences in the West. Wherein lies the heart of this vast universe? What do we exactly mean by existence? What are the ingredient particles, which make the structure of the universe possible? What is our (individual human beings) place in it?

On the other hand, there are living beings of whom man stands supreme. The bodily organism of man with its various complexities such as veins, sinews, marrow, arteries, blood, spine etc., that form the physical structure of man and his psychical body such as mind, sense of ego (ahamkara), intelligence, sentience and inventive power expressed the urge to discover the basic phenomena of mind and matter - both the outer and the inner worlds. Consciousness, Self and allied problems present before our mind are no less mysterious than our physical universe.

The question naturally arises - what is the relation between the tiny self within and the heavenly choir without? Is there any Creator? Then who .has made all these things possible? What is the source- point of this implicate order? In the tenth Mandala of the Rg Veda, we find the concept of Rta which is rooted in the super-sensuous experience of the sages. Rta is the dynamic rhythmic principle that signifies cosmic order and discipline. Then does this order also govern the life of man and become manifest as a dynamic rhythm in his daily conduct of life? Or things happen by following some fundamental laws? Philosophers and scientists are engaged in finding out solutions to all these questions in each of their own respective ways. Philosophers follow deductive and inductive logic but finally they resort to intuitive- meditative methods to arrive at their desired ends. Scientists, on the other hand, follow empirical-cum-analytical method and try to give a satisfactory explanation of things through the process of experi- mentation, empirical observations and mathematical calculations. If the meaning of life, its values and their realization be the objective end of man, why do not then philosophers, scientists and common sense men meet at a common platform, and through dialogue i.e., through discussion and deliberation arrive at a common point and save the impending danger of total annihilation of the world and its inhabi- tants? Why should we not try our utmost to bring peace to the problem- stricken unruly world? This is the most pertinent problem of the day. The Eastern religious philosophies such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, etc., and each of their branches are essentially concerned with timeless spiritual knowledge that lies beyond the worlds of physicality and psychicality. The world of transcendence cannot be adequately expressed in terms of bare intellectualism and aesthetics. Physics today with its revolutionary concepts of time, space and matter is also pointing to a world-view hitherto unknown in the intellectual history of the West. Enthused over these latest findings, there has been a recent trend among some intellectuals, including some Western scientists, to show the parallels between the world-view suggested by modem physics and that expressed in the Oriental philosophies. They have also explored the various implications of adopting the mystical views in our society.

It is common knowledge that the mechanistic world view is useful for the description of the kind of physical phenomena in a limited sense and hence has been partially useful for dealing with various situations in our daily environment, and it has also proved remarkably successful as a basis for technology. But it is found to be extremely inadequate for the description of physical phenomena at the sub- microscopic level. On the other hand, the 'organic' world-view of the mystics which regards all phenomena in the universe as integral points of an inseparable harmonious whole is rooted in the mystical traditions of meditative states of consciousness. In their description of the world, the mystics use concepts which are derived from these non-ordinary experiences and are found to be inconsistent with the reductionist scientist's description of macroscopic phenomena. The organic world view does not seem to be helpful in constructing machines and coping with the technical problems in an overpopulated world. But, in our daily life both the organic and the mechanistic views of life are valid and useful - one for science and technology in the utilitarian sense in the context of material progress while the other for a balanced and fulfilled spiritual life. It may only be mentioned here that it is in the background of the all-encompassing organic viewpoint that the mechanistic description finds its meaning and limited yet proper place, because it is more fundamental than the mechanistic one.

Classical physics, based on the mechanistic paradigm, can be derived to a great extent from Quantum Theory, which implies the former, but the reverse is not possible. Some take it as the first indication why the world-views of modern physics and Eastern mysticism might be expected to be similar. Both emerge when man steps out to enquire into the essential nature of things - into the heart of the physical universe in physics, into the deeper realms of consciousness in states of meditation - when we discover different kinds of realities behind the superficial mechanistic appearance of our everyday life. Physicists derive their knowledge from experi- ments, spiritualists/mystics have it from meditative or intuitive insights. Both are observations but the object of observation is of course different in the two cases. The mystic looks within and explores his or her consciousness at its various levels, which include the body as the physical manifestation of the mind (in the sense of conscious- ness). The experience of one's body is, in fact, emphasized in many Eastern traditions and serves as the key to the mystical experience of the world. When we are healthy we are hardly aware of the separate parts in our body but feel it as an integrated whole. This awareness generates a feeling of well-being and happiness. Similarly, to a spiri- tual practitioner, the wholeness of the entire cosmos is experienced as an extension of the body. In the words of Lama Govinda:
To the enlightened man ... whose consciousness embraces the universe, to him the universe becomes his 'body', while his physical body becomes a manifestation of the Universal Mind, his inner vision an expression of the highest reality, and his speech an expression of eternal truth and mantric power.

Lama Anagarika Govinda, Foundations of Tibetan Mysticism,
Rider, London, 1973, pg. 220

The physicist begins his enquiry into the essential nature of things by studying the material/physical world. Penetrating into the heart of matter, he sometimes has a glimpse of the unity of all things and events. Moreover, he has also learnt that he himself and his cons- ciousness are integral parts of this unity.

Thus, according to these scholars, the spiritualist/mystic and the physicist seem to arrive at the same conclusion, one starting from the inner realm, the other from the outer world. They also suggest that harmony between these views confirms the ancient Indian wisdom that Brahman, the ultimate reality without, is identical to Alman, the reality within (Jiva Brahmaiva napara).

CONTENTS

 

     
Acknowledgement 7
Preface (Science) by Dr. Sushil Kumar Mukherjee 9
Introduction

 

19
PART I : SCIENCE

 

Section A: Western Science and the Physical Universe 39
1. Sense Perception of Physical Phenomena - Its Limitations 40
2. Laws of Nature - Theories of Creation According to Western Science 53
3. Quantum and Beyond: Gluons and the Grand Unification 66
4. The Universe of Stephen Hawking - Modern Advanced View of Physics 85
5. Concluding Note on the Physical Science 102
Section B: The Indian Vision of the Physical Universe 107
1. Concept of Body - Some Indian Theories 109
2. Theory of Creation-cum-Manifestation According to Indian Philosophical Concepts 117
Section C: The Body, the Mind and the Unconscious 140
1. Life - Its Nature, Origin and Evolution 141
2. Journey into the Brain and the Mind 191
3. Living Organisms - An Integrated Approach 228
4. Psychology of the Unconscious 245
5. Passage from Science to Consciousness

 

254
PART II : CONSCIOUSNESS

 

1. Consciousness - A General Discussion 263
2. Religious Consciousness 272
3. Kundalini or Embodied Consciousness: A Scientific Exposition 285
4. Tantras: Analysis of Consciousness 302
5. Notion of Consciousness and the Integral Consciousness of Sri Aurobindo 323
6. Advaitic View of Consciousness 333
7. Absolute and Modified Consciousness - Advaitic and Other View Points

 

343
PART III : FREEDOM

 

1. Freedom - Introduction 401
2. Freedom - A General Discussion 402
3. Freedom - Existential Point of View 441
4. Freedom - Liberation / Renunciation According to Indian Views

 

471
Prelude to the Conclusion 557
Conclusion 558
Bibliography 587
Index 595
About the Author 605

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