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Blogs

Why Theism Needs Alternative Causation

Imagine that a moving billiard ball collides with a static one, and transfers its energy, which causes the static billiard ball to start moving. The cause of the change is energy, and due to conservation, once energy is transferred to the new ball, the cause ceases to exist, and the ...
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The Supreme Personality of Godhead

Most religions speak about the Supreme Person simply as “God”. In Vedic texts, He is described as Īśvara. But in the Gaudīya Vaishnava literature, since the time of Śrīla Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvati Thakur, the term “Supreme Personality of Godhead” is often employed to describe what is otherwise simply referred to by ...
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Three Aspects of Love

What is love? Is it one thing or many? Is there anything in common between brotherly love and motherly one? Why is love so elusive to understand, even though many of us may have felt it? Why is love often equated to sacrifice, service, and dedication? This post deconstructs the ...
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Consciousness is Rooted in Inner Conflict

This post discusses how choice arises from conflict, in the act of conflict resolution. The nature of this conflict, how conflict resolution leads to compromises in which one side goes dominant and the other subordinate, and how the dominant-subordinate structure is later reversed, producing a cyclic change, are interesting consequences ...
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How Living Systems Violate the Second Law of Thermodynamics

When James Clerk Maxwell proposed the second law of thermodynamics, he envisioned a thought experiment in which two chambers of gas were joined by a small door under the control of a ‘demon’ who would selectively open the door depending on which direction the gas molecules were moving. If we ...
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Secularism in Vedic Philosophy

Secularism arose during the era of Enlightenment in Europe with the aim to relegate religion to the private realm and determine the public sphere by reason and experience. Europe wasn’t arguing for the equality of all religions in the eyes of the government. It was arguing for the rejection of ...
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Mob Psychology—Does a Group Have a Mind?

It is common to think that a person has a body and a mind. But when groups of people act in concerted ways, it seems that they are a singular body controlled by a mind. How is a random collection of people (who act in individual ways) different from one ...
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A Random Walk Through Perception

I have recently received several questions about Sāñkhya. These include the differences between senses and organs, that between inert matter and a living body, how desires influence perception, how Sāñkhya elements could be understood in analogy to motion, and the relation between yoga and the control of senses and the ...
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Atomic Reality and the Crisis of Realism

It is commonplace for people to assert that quantum theory indicates a lack of objectivity or reality, when all it indicates is the failure of the classical conception of reality. In the classical conception, when you cut an apple, you get smaller pieces of apple. In this post, I will ...
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The Conundrum of Free Will

Since the beginning of science, nature was believed to be controlled by some laws which can be used to make predictions about the future independent of the individual observers. The observers cannot have choices because through these choices the future could be changed, in contradiction to the laws of nature ...
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The Cyclic Model of Causality

In modern science, causes are equated to forces. These forces represent how change occurs; it involves explaining the creation of a trajectory. However, forces don’t explain why change occurs, which involves the goal or destination along with a moral justification of the goal. For example, if someone asks you, “How ...
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Study Consciousness in Science?

In this post I will explore some philosophical ideas from Vedic philosophy and try to describe what consciousness is and argue that we cannot reduce consciousness to matter, but we can study matter using consciousness as the model. In short, we begin by assuming the soul, and then explain matter ...
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Why the Genome Incompletely Describes the Body

Genetic determinism—or the idea that we are fully determined by our genes taken from our parents—is now a thing of the past. Empirical evidence now shows that genes may exist but may not be expressed. The expression is controlled by some ‘epigenetic’ factors (which are also molecules) but enabled and ...
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The Reality of Rational and Irrational Numbers

In the previous post we talked about the problem of mathematical realism of negative and complex numbers; the issue was that you can construct these numbers logically and conceptually, but you will never find them in the real world. The problem of irrational numbers is the opposite: you can easily ...
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Do Negative and Imaginary Numbers Exist?

Numbers for the greater part of history have been viewed alternately as concepts and as quantities. Now, this raises problems about many types of numbers, which include negative numbers and imaginary numbers, because these cannot be viewed as quantities although there are compelling theories that can treat them logically as ...
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Mathematical Novelties in Vedic Philosophy

This is the transcript of the eighth episode of my podcast. In this episode we talk about a number of unique problems that arise in trying to make Vedic philosophy more rigorous in a logical and mathematical sense. I have been presenting some of these ideas while discussing the theories of ...
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Knowledge by Reason, Experiment and Authority

This is the transcript of the seventh episode of the Shabda Podcast. In this episode, we will talk about the problem of epistemology or how do we know. We will go over some historical material regarding the methods of knowledge prevalent in Western philosophy and then look at the same ...
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Semantic Atomic Theory

This is the transcript of this sixth episode of my podcast. Semantic atomic theory or the semantic interpretation of atomic theory is the idea that atoms are symbols of meaning and instead of the classical physical properties such as energy, momentum, angular momentum and spin, these atoms possess semantic properties which ...
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Karma and Altruism

Some people argue that because we are predestined to suffer and enjoy due to karma therefore there is no point in helping people. This view of karma is interpreted to mean that Vedic philosophy is opposed to altruism and charity. In fact, practitioners of some religions such as Christianity claim that ...
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Karma, Reincarnation, and Divine Justice

This is the transcript of the fifth episode of my podcast. In this episode we talk about the nature of karma and how it is created. We discuss how karma is created as a consequences of actions, different from cause and effect, and to the extent that science only deals with causes and ...
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Books

The Balanced Organization

Talcott Parsons, an American sociologist, compared society to an organism, with different institutions in the society working like the different functions in the body. This general idea, called Functionalism, views society as a system of interrelated parts that work together like the organs in a body. In a similar vein, Daniel Katz and Robert Kahn formulated an ...
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The Yellow Pill

The term “Yellow Pill” derives from the popular designation of socio-economic-political positions by names like the “Blue Pill” (surrender your individuality to the system), “Red Pill” (fight the system to get your individuality), “Green Pill” (replace the current system by a new one), etc. In the cacophony of ideologies, the discussion about the moral purpose of life ...
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Cosmic Theogony

Nature is viewed at present, through the lens of modern science, impersonally. In the scientific picture, nature is comprised of particles and forces which cause the particles to move and change, governed by mathematical laws. The same world is described differently in Vedic texts as being ‘controlled’ by persons. I call this the personalization of nature which ...
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Emotion

The topic of emotion is of deep interest to many people, but its relation to reason and cognition, when emotion controls reason, and why emotion can be controlled by reason, are not well understood. Similarly, when situations change our emotions, should we attribute the emotion to the situation, or to the person, because another person could have ...
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Western Questions, Eastern Answers

Philosophy and science in the West have been practiced primarily with the aim to understand the present world. A number of theories have been propounded, none of which are free of problems. Philosophy and science in the East (specifically the Vedic tradition) has always been practiced with the aim to transcend the world. Vedic texts provide many ...
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Mystic Universe

Unlike previous works on Vedic cosmology, which discuss the model of the universe without describing its connection to a theory of nature, this book discusses the theory before it describes the model. A deep understanding of the theory is essential if the model has to be understood, because there are numerous differences between modern and Vedic cosmology, ...
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Uncommon Wisdom

This book discusses some fundamental differences between Abrahamic religions and Vedic philosophy with regard to their views about religion and God. God in Abrahamic religions is a controller of nature, and this control appears to be different from the kind of order discovered by science. God in Vedic philosophy is the most primordial idea from which all ...
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Moral Materialism

The everyday notions of causality involve choices but the causal model in science doesn’t. For instance, we know that if we consume an analgesic then our pain would be relieved, if we eat food the body will get strength, if you pull the trigger on a loaded gun then a shot will be fired. The everyday notion ...
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Signs of Life

The critiques of evolution based on the issue of transitional forms, whether the theory can describe the origin of life besides its evolution, and if genetic information sufficiently describes all biological properties, are well-known. This book critiques evolution from a completely different angle—it brings ideas well-known in mathematics, physics, computing theory, game theory, and non-linear system theory ...
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Is the Apple Really Red?

The clash of ideologies between science and religion - this book argues - is based on an incorrect understanding of matter, disconnected from consciousness, and an incorrect notion of God, disconnected from matter, space and time. The ideas of soul, morality, God and afterlife can also be scientific, but in a new science that studies meanings instead ...
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Six Causes

The development of science has generated a strong debate between creationists and evolutionists. While evolutionists claim to have reason and empirical data on their side, the creationist view is based on revelation and hence often decried as regressive. This book hopes to undo some of that misunderstanding especially with regard to Vedic theories of creation by describing ...
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Sāńkhya and Science

Sāńkhya is the name of the Vedic theory of objectivity. Objects, in Sāńkhya, are not a priori real. Rather, objects are created when consciousness adds meaning to matter. Matter, therefore, prior to addition of meaning, is undifferentiated, and we can liken it to an empty space-time container. In both modern science and Sāńkhya, objects are created from this empty container. However, ...
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Quantum Meaning

Quantum Meaning presents a Semantic Interpretation of Quantum Theory in which atomic objects are treated as symbols instead of things. Classical physics treated reality as things and the quantum-classical conflict is traced to this difference between symbols and things. The interpretation argues that current quantum theory is incomplete because it describes symbols in terms of the symbol's ...
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Gödel’s Mistake

This book connects Gödel's and Turing's theorems to differences between ordinary language and mathematics. Ordinary language allows distinctions between things, names, concepts, programs, algorithms and problems but mathematics does not. Gödel's proof arises due to category mistakes between things, names and concepts while Turing's proof results from a categorical confusion between programs and descriptions. If mathematics and computing ...
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