28 Mar

What is Vedic Science, Really?

In the introduction to the Bhagavad-Gita As It Is, Śrīla Prabhupāda writes, “The subject of the Bhagavad-gītā entails the comprehension of five basic truths. First of all the science of God is explained, and then the constitutional position of the living entities, jīvas. Prakriti (material nature) and time (the duration of existence of the whole universe or the manifestation of material nature) and karma (activity) are also discussed.” He further writes, “Those belonging to some sectarian faith will wrongly consider that sanātana-dharma is also sectarian, but if we go deeply into the matter and consider it in the light of modern science, it is possible for us to see that sanātana-dharma is the business of all the people of the world – nay, of all the living entities of the universe.” (Emphasis mine). This post discusses just how the above five categories constitute the sum and substance of what we might call “Vedic science”. The post concludes with a comparison with Newton’s laws which started modern science and shows that similar to Newton’s three laws, a different set of three natural laws exist in Vedic science.

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16 Nov

The Twin Paradox and Conscious Experience

The Twin Paradox in Einstein’s Relativity Theory describes a thought experiment in which there are two identical twins, one of whom makes a journey into space in a high-speed rocket and returns home to find that the twin who remained on Earth has aged more. This post analyzes the paradox and describes a difference between Clock Time and Conscious Time. The analysis shows that if such an experiment is actually performed, the traveling twin may age more (rather than less) under certain circumstances if the age is measured according to Conscious Time even though the clock will indicate a lesser time.

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23 Jul

The Theological Problem of Falldown

I generally refrain from commenting on theological topics, and restrict myself to issues in science, but in this post I will make an exception. The issue of interest is whether a soul “falls down” into matter. There is often confusion around this topic, which, in my view, rests upon a misunderstanding about the nature of knowledge about our past. There are three broad theological views on this issue:

(a) the soul is an individual; he falls down into matter and can get out of it;

(b) the soul is an individual but has always been in matter, although he can get out of the material laws;

(c) the individuality of the soul is an illusion; the creation of individuality is itself the falldown, although there is a universal transcendent observer.

Quite separately, there is the materialist position which denies both individual and universal transcendent observers. These views about the soul’s existence are tied to the views about matter, space, and time, and these  ideas are not just ideological commitments that can only be accepted on faith, but can also be discussed scientifically.

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