Scientific enquiry into many aspects of reality around us, has been the specialty of humankind. Humans consider themselves to be intelligent because they have the capability to study and propose various theories for the existence of sentient beings.
While, empirical reality has been the focus of scientific study, humans have always been curious about how awareness, consciousness, sub-consciousness, the human brain or the mind works. How are thoughts formed? Am I the mind? Is the brain responsible for consciousness? Are thoughts consciousness? Are there sub-conscious thoughts? Is the observable universe the truth? Is there a truth beyond reality? What is difference between a living being and a non-living being? What is the soul?
If it is not about consciousness, the next curiosity has been about space, time and matter. Is space finite or infinite? If space is expanding, where is it expanding into? What is time? Are there extra dimensions to space? Is time the 4th dimension? How many dimensions are present? How does space and time relate to consciousness? If consciousness was not present, would there be space and time? Is this whole universe just a thought? Is there a consolidated thought that ties all living beings together?
It looks like the answers for many such related questions have been explored by humans since time immemorial. In search of the answers to these questions, modern humans have explored all the way from the immense space beyond earth, with all its stars, planets, comets, asteroids, galaxies, clusters, background microwave radiation and so on, to the smallest atoms, protons, photons, neutrinos and quantum particles. Yet, we seem to be stuck studying only the so called “observable universe” which is visible to our naked senses or extended senses with the tools that we have developed again related to translating and projecting the observed to our naked senses. Again, we have not been able to get to the root cause for even that “matter” which is plainly visible to our naked senses. We search for that trust or belief factor that proves to our brains that something is real or true. The proof that we search for is something we have defined as observable and reproducible actions performed by us, using our external organs, actions external to ourselves. Anything that is not observable or reproducible by us is discarded as not science, but pure conjecture or superstition.
We observe light or absence of light from light years away, try to calculate accurate distance and direction, observe light changes and shifts, microwave backgrounds, microwave radiations to detect stars, quasars far away from earth. We have microscopes, electron microscopes and so on the instruments keep coming which can observe smaller and smaller components of matter or detect particle from farther and farther away. We have LHC that can collide protons and split matter into smaller and smaller pieces and study the particles generated. We have a standard model that describes quantum particles, we have measured the forces, momentum, spin and many such properties of these quantum particles, we have defined Higgs boson and Higgs field. We have defined various laws of physics, laws in mathematics, solved equations in various branches of mathematics, identified a huge number of living organisms, proteins, DNA, RNA, been affected by viruses, bacteria. We have created logic that are virtual and real, we have simulated intelligence in computers, created technology that seem very advanced.
We can keep studying the smaller and smaller or the larger and larger. But, given the analogous nature of space and time, it looks like we are going to keep finding more and more stars, galaxies, quasars or smaller and smaller quantum particles, strings or vibrations. It looks like we are stuck finding infinite observables and the infinite parameters associated with them without going any further from where we started. We seem to be no closer to explaining the core questions that started us on this journey. Can we, with any certainty, using the established laws, define what space and time is? Can we define what consciousness is? None of our original questions seem to have an answer with the theories observed in the observable universe.
We typically attribute these questions, their answers and other empirically unexplained occurrences to some unexplained superior power. It is strange also that, while we attribute the unexplained to superior power, in the same breath we discard the superior power as religion or non-scientific. Either we can give an explanation for the unexplained or attribute it to a superior power. We cannot attribute it to a superior power on one hand and disregard that same superior power on the other hand. This leaves our questions without any viable explanation.
These question are generally classified to be in the realm of esoteric or mystic and shelved to be explained only by philosophers and any hypothesis provided for it classified as a philosophy, religion or plain non-scientific. Yet, strangely, the same physics, chemistry, biology and other scientific laws, postulates and theories developed are over assumptions that are just these unexplained esoteric, mystic occurrences. For example, the atom based on which chemistry is defined, has no explanation of how it exists or what it is. For example, gravity, space and time on which every law of physics depend, has no explanation of how it exists or in fact what it is. What we research and explain fall under only one category, the category of a user. It tells us “how what exists can be used or modified to create technology that makes human existence comfortable”. Science, the way we have defined it does not even attempt to explain the internal workings of that which is used, concept or matter. With the current definition of modern science and its scientific methodology, it cannot explain or even start studying the branch of science that explains how reality exists. Just because science discards the questions related to existence as non-scientific, does not stop the existence of consciousness or awareness or stop the questions from arising within all of us. It just goes to show how shallow our science is.
Sometimes it is not just esoteric, mystic occurrences that are discarded by us. We tend to discard too many common place occurrences as simple and already explained and appreciate magic by magicians who work by deceiving the senses of the observers. The explanations to these simple occurrences are best described as incomplete logic, yet they are a better accepted event than a simple utilisation of known science to deceive the brain. Simple questions such as, how do living beings grow? How do cells seemingly violate gravity and grow opposite to gravity? Why does biodegradation only occur when there is no life in the material? What is that life force which prevents degradation of the body and how does it prevent degradation? We attribute growth to division of cells and discarded the various questions that arise because of it as not requiring scientific explanation. For example, matter grows with growth of cells, but cells are not supposed to have the capability of intelligence. So, how does knowledge grow along with growth of matter? The only answer to that is experience. But, what is experience and how does it grow our intelligence? Memory is just a storage for recalling experience. What puts it all together to make a decision?
Another innocent question, cells divide in every direction rather than just along the downward direction or the proposed direction of gravity. If gravity supposedly acts in the downward direction, why do we all not grow downward? Why don’t plants grow downward? Why does sun light help plants defy gravity? If matter needs to travel at 11.2km/s to escape gravity, how does new cells formed by cell division not divide in the direction of greatest force that is gravity? We see unsupported branches of plants growing and balancing themselves in an odd angle trying to grow towards the sun and yet not being weighed down by gravity. They grow to a certain extent before the weight overtakes and the branches seek support. How does this happen? How does force exist in these branches to defy gravity? At what point does weight overcome life force? How is it possible for us to change the distribution of our weight?
It is no wonder that human race with all its intelligence has not progressed any further than the material world. The answer as to why we are not progressing further seems to be simple. The science that we have accepted and the manner in which we have defined it has stagnated the progress of knowledge. It has gravitated towards developing science that can be converted to technology and hence money or power, rather than learning, understanding and explaining. Lot of proofs of declared scientific theories, in the recent world resides in statistics, sometimes poorly conducted statistical studies that are limited to an inadequate subset of the whole. With the advent of computers and with its “unlimited” computing power, statistical surveys, force-fitted curves and behaviour patterns by excluding outliers, mimicking of said intelligent human behaviour, mimicking of human or living being actions, forcing ideas on acquired large user-bases, social behaviours, communication, connecting human ideas as a network and many such technologies are considered to be more scientifically advanced. While these provide scope for imagination to grow, it should be recognised they cannot answer the underlying questions that started our scientific quests. We can keep building out more and more technologies, from one phone to another, one computer to another, one comfort to another, yet, unless we understand the answers to our original questions, we will just be going towards a world that implodes under its own imagination.
It is time we started questioning our methodology of study and the methodology adopted for experimentation and proofs. When a methodology of study does not take us anywhere but only in circles, it should be recognised that the methodology of study and associated definitions have to be modified. It is necessary for us to identify that, while the tools and medium of study and proof that we have suffices to study the concepts within the environment of empirical reality, to study the formation of the empirical reality itself, the mode of study has to be changed. Expecting proofs within the environment of empirical reality for the working of that same empirical reality is paradoxical. What proof can there be of growth other than the already observed behaviour of everything growing in this universe? What proof can there be of consciousness working other than what is already existing within oneself? What proof can there be of knowledge other than what is used to define that same science that we elevate to exalted standards, standards over that knowledge which creates that same science?
Inadequate scientific methodologies
Modern sciences uses the empirical method of obtaining knowledge (Refer to scientific method in wikipedia). The scientific method generally agreed upon and used in research is called scientific inquiry which typically involves:
- Characterisation based on observations, definitions and measurements
- A hypothesis, a theoretical explanation of what is characterised
- Prediction, a deduction based on the hypothesis
- Experiment that tests the characterisation, hypothesis and prediction
An alternate method is evidence based research used in meta-science or medicine. Here evidence based on experience is used as an accepted practice. Some of the applications can be in medicine where practices are based on experience as opposed to a formal study or the scientific method used in research is based not on formal proof, but on evidence based on results got from experience.
But, in either case, modern science, research study hypothesis etc., is based on the empirical or observable reality around us. It explains why a phenomenon is observed in a certain manner, extends this hypothesis to other scenarios where a similar phenomenon can be reproduced. This cannot be used for studying the non-empirical or the science which is the basis of reality or observable universe around us.
This book describes the science in the Surya Siddanta which describes the emergence of this empirical reality around us. But, before we jump into the science in Surya Siddanta, we need to understand the differences and drawbacks in the approaches used by modern science. I will describe these in the next two chapters before describing the Surya Siddanta.