Announcements

First Announcement

 

Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Institute, Bangalore in collaboration with the Nepal Academy for Science and Technology (NAST), Nepal Academy, Central Department of Biotechnology, Tribhuvan University, and Kathmandu University are organizing the ‘Fifth International conference ‘Science and Scientist - 2017’ during August 17 – 18, 2017 at Nepal Pragya Pratisthan, Kamaladi – Kathmandu, Nepal. This conference will be organized under the chairmanship of Sripad Bhakti Madhava Puri Maharaja, Ph.D. (Serving Director, Bhakti Vedanta Institute of Spiritual Culture and Science, Princeton, NJ, USA). Conference details can be found at: www.scsiscs.org/conference/scienceandscientist/2017

Conference Registration details

The registration details have been given at the conference webpage:

http://scsiscs.org/conference/index.php/scienceandscientist/2017/schedConf/registration

The last date for early registration is July 10, 2017.

Accommodation

Kathmandu is well connected by air. Buses are also available from Delhi, Varanasi, Raxaul, Siliguri, Sunauli (Bhairava), Nepalgunj (near Lucknow). Kathmandu climatic condition during August: Temperature 18 - 28 0C. Accommodation facility will be arranged for all registered delegates arriving from outside Kathmandu valley. Indian delegates do not need VISA. However, they have to carry authentic identity proof.

Technical Paper Submission and Proceedings of Science and Scientist – 2017

The organizers invite submission of articles within 5000 words and after a review process the author of selected articles will be intimated for presentation (for those international delegates who cannot come physically to the conference venue an online presentation facility is also arranged) in the conference. All accepted papers will be published in the proceedings of Science and Scientist – 2017. The last date for article submission is 2nd July, 2017.

Please submit your article online at the submissions link given in the conference webpage.

http://scsiscs.org/conference/index.php/scienceandscientist/2017/schedConf/cfp

Conference Themes

The conference will feature leading scientists from Nepal, India and Western countries, who will deliberate on various topics which will be valuable for developing a better understanding of the “hard” problems of science such as the nature and origin of life and the cosmos, the mind-brain connection, artificial intelligence and cognitive biology which is confirming some of the important concepts of life from the Vedantic perspective. The main theme of the conference is “Working Together Toward a Spiritual Science of the Conscious Self”.

Darwinism, or the original theory of evolution proposed by Darwin 150 years ago in his Origin of Species, in which he introduced the idea of natural selection, was laid to rest about a half century ago when it was succeeded by the neo-Darwinian theory involving genetic mutation and natural selection, also known as the modern synthesis. Since then an endless stream of textbooks, courses, media presentations and “genetic toolkits” have been used to indoctrinate students and the public with these ideas causing many to give up their religious conviction in God or the soul as integral to their understanding of life. However, with the advancement of science, especially in the field of biology, more detailed knowledge of the genes and genome have revealed a far more complex dynamic relation between the genome and phoneme and its environment than can be explained by appeal to simple genetic mechanisms. Therefore, French biologist Dr. Didier Raoult concluded:

“Genetic research, in particular, must be free to find new models to explain, and enhance, twenty-first-century scientific discovery. Today, Darwin’s theory of evolution is more a hindrance than a help, because it has become a quasi-theological creed that is preventing the benefits of improved research from being fully realized.”

Descartes laid the philosophical groundwork for the modern scientific period by separating subjective cognition from objective bodies, thereby also dividing epistemology from ontology reducing knowing to indifferent “observation.” This is the perspective of consciousness and its object, of which material science only imperfectly studies the object. In reality these two are not separated but dialectically related and sublated in the higher comprehending original unity of self-consciousness. Physical scientists fail to study these higher categories of reality and are therefore left with an incomplete understanding of a mere superficial nature that is inadequate to comprehend the core truth. But scientific, rational inquiry will not stop until a comprehensive idea is reached that is coherent with the full range of our knowledge of life. That spectrum of knowledge is not circumscribed merely by chemistry, physics and mathematics. Thus Vedānta-sūtra advises, that you will have to continue your search, athāto brahma jijñāsā, until you reach brahma, the underlying spiritual source, janmādy asya yatah, the fountainhead where all inquiry will reach its purpose. Then beyond knowledge Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam will guide us to the ultimate search – raso vai saḥ, the search for our highest fulfillment, sweetness and love.

Modern science, or inquiry into the unknown, had its beginnings in the Christian West because of a faith that Reason or rational principles could be found in God’s creation. It is the task of Science and Scientist – 2017 to understand why modern science today has turned away from and failed to comprehend this Reason in the world, that is similar to the nous that Anaxagoras conceived as ruling the world. Eclipses of the Sun were once predicted using the geocentric epicycles of Ptolemy. They are now described in terms of the heliocentric orbits of Copernicus. Some ancients knew that they could chase away the Moon dog from eating the Sun god whenever they would beat their gongs. Each of these examples have something correct or confirming about them even though they imagine different realities corresponding to them. Newton’s conception of the solar system included God as necessary to guide the alchemical vitality that was intrinsic to the order and movement in the universe. The mathematical bones of Newton’s Principia were abstracted by modern physics and converted into a mechanical model of the universe. The apparently same corresponding observations were used to validate both theories although they referred to very different imagined realities. A map corresponds to an actual terrain and can help one navigate one’s way through the real terrain depending on its accuracy. However, the map can never be considered a substitute for the actual terrain since a two dimensional visual map can never represent the lived actuality that is experienced in a real terrain. A reflection of reality in a mirror may accurately depict the objects being reflected, but one who makes a journey “through the looking glass” will not discover the real world but a wonderland of mere exaggerated imaginations like Lewis Carroll’s Alice did. Atomic Theory and Quantum Theory provide imagined wonderlands that possess some observations or correspondence with true reality. To some degree each is logical, self-consistent and complete, although Gödel would object to either being at the same time consistent and complete.

If we carefully consider what science is doing here, we discover that anthropocentric or egocentric conceptions of reality – reality as it is “for us” or for me – are being erected in place of true reality as it is “by itself and for itself.” In other words, a subjective conception/theory that is “for us” is being erected as a reality “in and for itself” yet is actually opposed to objective reality as it is in and for itself. It seeks and has some correspondence with true reality and if the subjective conception corresponds with the objective reality the truth is considered to have been reached. This is called the correspondence theory of truth. However, there are problems with this as we noted above, in that different theories may have some correspondence with objective observations and yet still refer to different imagined realities. The real problem arises when these different Idols of the Mind [Man-made images/ideas/conceptions that are for us in our subjectivity] are presumed to be outwardly objective and venerated as the True Reality [Reality “as it is” or “by itself and for itself”]. Explanations consist of descriptions in terms of the chosen theories assumed as real, even though they are abstractions from the true reality. Because they are abstractions, they never comprehend the concrete reality they merely represent.

Generally the struggle of Science is an outcome of the thinking which never considered the possibility that the logic of reality could actually be contradictory by nature. However in Quantum Physics, it is experimentally observed that subatomic particles display both wave and particle behavior. This implies a contradictory feature is contained in the same object. Similarly in biology, the idea of the integration or unity of consciousness is essential if one wants to comprehend what the true idea of consciousness represents. Science has learned that it cannot ignore the role of the conscious scientist in its exploration of reality even though the realization is still in a very primitive stage as might be expected for any beginner.

The Sri Isopanishad explains that the Complete Whole can produce complete wholes from itself without losing its completeness. Absolute has no restriction as to how many wholes it can produce out of itself. The only restriction comes from the finite awareness and thinking of a finite intellect that tries to determine what the Absolute can or cannot do. The Absolute must always be the result of pure reason based on logic and evidence of an unbiased nature that is not influenced by one-sided beliefs and prejudices.

‘Science and Scientist – 2017’ aims at highlighting the fact that modern scientific research and development seem to be leading to a detente between science and the more spiritual ideas of soul and God as found in all world religions. The progress of science continues to leave behind old and outworn ideas and embrace more comprehensive ones that may more adequately express life and its origin. The Spiritual concepts can help modern science to explore the reality of a spiritual conscious self as the foundation of life and all the questions of origin of life and evolution should be viewed from a more spiritual concept. To judge good and bad by our self-centered perspectives will not bring us closer to Truth but entangle us further in the misconception of separate interest. Withdrawing from reality to be with one’s subjective thought alone, is a detachment from the substantial content of True Reality and becomes a conceit or superiority to it. This type of freedom from the content must be given up, and instead of arbitrarily directing the content of one’s own thought one’s freedom should be sunk into and pervade the content of reality, letting thought be directed and controlled by Reality’s own proper nature of which our essential selves are but a part and manifestation. We do not lose anything thereby except our false sense of self [false ego], but rather gain our true identity and real freedom. Free agency does not reside in us as separated from reality, but within true reality itself in which we participate. The comparative studies of different ideas are essential and it will educate and enlighten Science like never before. Religion teaches all to surrender to God, the Supreme Reality, from Whom reason and wisdom originate. Wisdom is not a property of the universe, although we find life and intelligence in Nature. It is a quality of a Person, the Divine Personality of Godhead. Just as consciousness and intelligence pervade our body’s activities, so God’s Personal energy pervades and forms the whole Reality with life and intelligence. Not only does religion teach surrender of our false egos to the true Reality of God, but also teaches us how to learn by attending to revelation of the truth in order to know it, rather than encouraging the tendency impose and project one’s self imaginings onto reality, taking oneself as a separate subjective agent against a passive objectivity that lacks its own agency and ability to reveal itself. Reality as possessing personal agency can reveal Godself to us if we adopt the attentive patience that allows the veils of self-centered egotism to dissolve by practice of meditation, surrender and service. Reality is by itself and for itself, means that the Absolute (God) is its own origin and has its own purposes for itself.

 
Posted: 2017-04-09 More...
 
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