New member introduction: Shrinivas Gadkari
sgadkari2001 at YAHOO.COM
Wed Oct 3 01:06:38 CDT 2001
>I want to ask, do you really think this is a big problem? I mean it is
>remarkable that Galileos discoveries caused such a big rift between Science
>and his religion but although very early on our ancestors had discovered
>Earth is in fact not a flat disc carried on the backs of four elephants
>resting on a tortoise, yet it did not cause a similiar feud. Our Rshis and
>Acharyas understood well that different means of knowledge apply to
>different fields of enquiry.
>Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
Namaste Shri Jaldhar,
Greetings to all members of this list. This would be my first
posting on this list.
Is this a problem ? In todays world yes. Actually, just
yesterday I started to write some articles addressing this
issue as a result of some interactions on the advaitin list.
I copy that article below. I hope it clarifies some of the
points that you have raised. When I get a chance to write
more I will post the subsequest portions of this article.
If we can find a framework wherein vedic teachings can
co exist with modern science, it will only enhance our
understanding of the Truth.
Here is an attempt to post a few mini-essays on the
relation between the views of modern science
and the Vedas.
Comments are most welcome. If some reader feels the
presentation is flawed, please bring it to my notice.
Physics and Yoga
In my opinion, if the relation between yoga and
physics is addressed, it should go a long way in
understanding Vedas in general. Let us take up the
core issue to start with:
How do yoga siddhis fit in with our understanding of
physics ? Is the concept of yoga siddhis at conflict
with the scientific view of the world ?
Consider a table with a pen on it. The pen is at the
left end of the table. Without physically doing
by thoughts alone is it possible for the pen to be
'teleported' to the right end of the table ?
Yoga sutras assert that such things are possible
and the suggested technique is a particular
meditation that Patanjali terms 'Samayama'. Almost
all of us have heard accounts of advanced yogis
perform such feats. Shri Satya Sai Baba for example
is attributed fantastic powers.
Based on classical physics such a phenomenon is
impossible. However in quantum physics, which in fact
is the contemporary point of view, such phenomena
are not ruled out.
In quantum physics, for any situation one can
in principle write down a wave equation. Wave
equation describes the evolution of the state of
a physical system. The initial knowledge that we
have about the system constitutes the initial
state of the system. The wave equation then
allows us to compute the probability that the
system will be in some particular state. In the
above example one can write an equation for
the system consisting of the table, chair, air
in the room, wall, floor and ceiling (say we
restrict the list to just these objects). The
initial state of the system is the pen being
on the left corner of the table. Let us use the
wave equation to compute the probabilities of the
following two states:
State 1. The next second the pen is on the left
corner of the table.
State 2. The next second the pen is on the right
corner of the table.
I have not done the math, but I am quite sure
that if one were to do the math (which would be
impossibly complicated) we would get:
Prob(State 1) = P1 ~ 1
Prob(State 2) = P2 ~ 0 (~ represents approximately).
Important point is, P2 though vanishingly small,
is not zero.
Even more important point is, quantum theory has
no control on which of the states the system will
be observed in. The most unfortunate point is
hardly any physicist makes any serious attempt to
inquire into this.
Ordinarily an observation will result is State 1
but on rare occasions one might observe the system
is State 2. Say we observe the system the state 2
what happens after that, do we momentarily
see the system in state 2 and then the system
reverts back to state 1 ? No, on observation
the evolution of the system stop, also known
as collapse of the wave function. We now have
to formulate a new wave equation, with state 2
as the initial state of the system. Now this
wave equation will have P2 ~ 1, and P1 ~ 0.
That is if we succeed in observing the pen
once on the right corner, most likely all
subsequent observations will correspond to
the system in state 2.
If one were to bring mind into the picture,
and postulate that it is some activity of the
mind that is responsible for choosing which
state would be really observed, it would NOT
AT ALL be in contradiction with physics.
Such an approach would in fact complement the
More later .....
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