Vedanta meets Science

Excerpts – “Every being is naturally inclined to seek happiness and to avoid pain. Mental reactions to sights and sounds, the drive to fulfill physiological and psychological needs, and even the struggle for existence are all propelled by the urge for happiness. Though all humans reach out towards the sources of pleasure, few obtain it, and still fewer discover that delight and happiness through the senses is ephemeral. Enlightened minds discover that everlasting happiness lies in knowing the Truth.

The human search for Truth, which constitutes a higher nature of humankind, has ushered in various branches of knowledge and learning. Swami Vivekananda says: ‘The e goal of mankind is knowledge. That is the one ideal placed before us by Eastern philosophy. Pleasure is not the goal of man, but knowledge. Pleasure and happiness come to an end.’1

Objective and Subjective Research

Science and philosophy are two noble branches of knowledge. With its passion to understand the world, science has established a commanding influence today. The spinoffs, in the form of various technologies, are the gift s of science to humankind. Scientific search for truth is restricted within the domain of objective investigation, and such investigations are invariably known to be relative and partial. Sir Arthur Eddington says: ‘Here is a hint of aspects deep within the world of physics, and yet unattainable by the methods of physics.’ 2

Hence, these deeper aspects that are unattainable by objective methods require further investigation by adopting means that can overcome the barriers of objectivity. Philosophy delves into the various levels of consciousness and opens the subjective side of human nature, the ‘knower’, for investigation. It enables humankind to see deep within itself. The world of the subject is as vast and complex as the external world. Hence, if science and philosophy can combine harmoniously, the journey towards Truth will be smooth and swift.”

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This article is courtesy and copyright Prabuddha Bharata (www.advaitaashrama.org). I have been reading the Prabuddha Bharata for years and found it enlightening. You can subscribe online at www.advaitaashrama.org. Cost is Rs 100/ for one year, Rs 280/ for three years, Rs 1,200/ for twenty years and Rs 2,000 for twenty five years.

Also read
1. Bridging Religion and Science
2. Mystery of Creation – some Vedantic concepts
3. Upanishads: the science of freedom from bondage
4. Astrology science of the New Millennium