vande guru-paramparAm
SCIENCE AND SPIRITUALITY: SECTION V
The Proof
In asking for a scientific proof of the statements made by scriptures, seers and saints, we are slipping into a trap. Remember we said earlier that the eye cannot corroborate the decibel value of the noise the ear heard nor can the ear corroborate the colour of what the eye recognised. So also, by asking for 'scientific proof' in the SAstra of the Inner Self we are looking for the answer in the wrong direction. Before proceeding further let us first clear a cobweb of misunderstanding which plague the conscience of many a votary of science regarding religion and spirituality.
Certainly a scientist must be on guard against
the superficial view, exaggerated emphasis,
imprecise statement, unsound premise,
unreported fact, fallacious reasoning,
and distorted picture of facts and things.
But while guarding against such unscientific practices
the scientist should not fall into the same error as
the religious fanatic or fundamentalist
who doggedly clings to his dogma.
Science versus Spirituality
When a mystic, religious orotherwise, reports his experience which from our scientific viewpoint and by scientific methodology, is not amenable for verification, we should as true scientists be able to accept that there could be things which we cannot explain scientifically. This is the humility which Science has all along been teaching us through its characteristic feature of raising more new unanswered problems every time we seem to have answered an existing problem. This is not to say we are explaining away the 'contradictions' between science and religion by use of big words and big talk. Religion is not, as we said earlier, just rites, rituals and miracles, though these figure prominently in all popular practices of religion. The thesis here is that though we may be apparently confronted with contradictions, if we look at the foundations or axioms from which the different conclusions of Science and Spirituality were arrived at, they can be seen to belong to two independent frameworks and so they are not logical contradictions of each other.
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February 1, 1999
Copyright V. Krishnamurthy
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