Thursday, March 21, 2013

Hindu contribution to world science, 'Adhyatma-Vidya' the science of man

Adhyatma-Vidya, has pre-eminence in the Indian tradition. Our country has, contributed immensely in this field of the science of man.

Our writers in ancient India gave the highest place of honour to this science of man in depth. Physics, chemistry, botany, zoology and astronomy -- all these vidyas/ shastras or sciences were highly respected and cultivated in ancient India; but pre-eminent position among all sciences was given to this science of man, in depth.

In the Bhagavad Gita enumerating his glories in the manifested universe as the one in-dwelling and outspreading Divine Reality, Sri Krsna, the Divine Incarnation, affirms this pre-eminent position when he says: 'adhyatma vidya vidyanam' -- among the vidyas or sciences, I am adhyatma-vidya.

Its no wonder that physicist, astronomers and other scientist fall back on Hindu philosophy to seek deeper meaning in their field of research. Instead of peering into space with a telescope, sitting down and reflecting inwards gives much deeper meaning of the world and the universe at large. It is without a doubt that our ancient sages were scientist, who in absence of modern laboratory theorised answers to most questions which confounds modern science even today.

Adhyatmic Vidya is also the single biggest differentiator between Hindu religious philosophy and Abrahamic religions like Judaism, Christianity and Islam. In the later religions, Adhyatmic Vidya is frowned upon. An individual's attempt to connect with his inner being (Soul) is not sanctioned by these religions and this is why you will see many disillusioned westerners travelling to India trying to "find themselves". Adhyatmic Vidya is also the biggest reason Yoga finds resistance among these faiths.

So will it be safe to call Hinduism also, the science of humankind?!

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