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Physics as a Spiritual Discipline-George Sudarshan

Physics as a Spiritual Discipline-George Sudarshan

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The Many-Splendoured Universe

In the Mahabharata there is a touching passage where Yudhistira asks the fallen grandsire

Bhisma about the proper life discipline; he asks:

ko dharma sarva dharmanain dharmadhikatarno matah? kim japan mucyate jantu janrnasamsara bandhanat?

(What is the modality of functioning which excels all others in your judgment? By what discipline of recitation and contemplation can a sentient being transcend the phenomenal")

The grandsire answers by enunciating the thousand names of Visnu which begin with visvam visnuh

Nature as the embodiment of the supreme entity. Study of the world, of the dynamic and the static, of the many-splendoured but undivided: this is Physics. All that moves moves by virtue of the principles of Physics. When the world is seen as the manifestation of the divine, study of the world and contemplation of it, Physics, becomes an act of devotion. When the world is seen as including the observer and all his experiences, 311 the richness of nature and its many phenomena as being variety without fragmentation: then it becomes a path of integration, a coming together. When Physics becomes endowed with wisdom, when the observing intelligence is not relegated to the background, when thoughts and feelings are included in the catalogue of entities studied by enlarging the horizons of Physics: then does Physics become a "path with heart" in the idiom of Don Juan.

I am a physical scientist and I have learned Physics from my betters and eiders .. I want to share with you some of [he things I have learned. The physical universe is a rich universe .. In it are seen countless varieties of matter, most of it not only in motion but in and continually changing motion .. There are organized motions that we see as waves in water or "see" as the movement of wind; and disorganized motions that we see in a choppy sea or that we infer such motions in a heated gas. Very often matter appears to consist of assemblages of huge numbers of particles, each retaining their identity but in continual interaction. We encounter the phenomena of light and sound, of heat and chemical reactions, of electricity and magnetism. We see everyday scale objects but our studies have shown us how to learn of the motions of the very small and very esoteric units like molecules, atoms and elementary particles. At the other extreme we came across huge aggregates yielding new structures like stars and galaxies. These entities are in more or less permanent change, of perpetual mati on; so much so that the appropriate phrase i s"the restl ess

uni verse".

Why the variety? How shall we comprehend it? Both these questions may be answered by an examination of our current knowledge and the ideas that led to it. The vague general principle of the permanence of matter got very highly refined in the theory of chemical elements and their aggregation as chemical compounds. According to this there are certain indestructible indivisible invariant units called atoms which belong to about a hundred species. All chemical compounds and hence all materials are various combinations of these building blocks. When chemical reactions take place, the atoms merely change their associations: the atoms are performing an elaborate "square dance". The principle of conservation of matter becomes now refined into the principle of conservation of the various atomic species. In contrast to chemical changes there are the simpler physical changes in which the substances do not change but only their atomic configurations

change. Then we talk of motion. The study of motion in its geometric aspects is called kinematics: and the changes in kinematics and its causes and changes is called dynamics. Change is an essential aspect of all existence in the physical world, though sometimes the changes and motions are not immediately manifest.

Dynamics, then, becomes the model of all physics. The march of integration of our knowledge of the physical world during the past few centuries has been a systematic extension of the scope of dynamics to include all physics. Motion of planets and satellites, motion of projectiles and pebbles, motion of tides and clouds all become subsumed under dynamics. Fluids are seen as aggregates of particles in motion and solids as such aggregates with more restricted motion of the constituent particles. We found organized motion in fluids and disorganized turbulent motions: we found epiphenomena like waves and wavelets in fluids. But in all these motions the underlying world stuff (constituency?) does not change; it merely changes its configuration (but merely its configuration). All motion is only change in the inessential aspects.

Motion is superposed on matter. Yet these motions have an acquired conservation law: the conservation of energy (and, of momentum, under suitable conditions). The total energy of a system i s preserved: this is the First Law of Therrnodyn am i cs. Energy acts asi f i ti s a new kin d of ethereal yet permanent substance.

The importance of motion and the energy of motion becomes more evident when we see organized wave motion in matter. When we drop a stone into water and the waves and wavelets begin to propagate, we see motion 10 the fluid. But if we have a floating leaf on the water, we see that the wave advances but the water and the leaf that floats on it merely execute a small Jocal dance in their own place. Motion of the wave is not the same as the motion of water: it is the flow of a condition, a phase. Same is the case with sound. It is as if the energy of wave motion is a finer fluid that permeates the water or air.

This aspect of motion as an entity in itself is seen in an even more remarkabJe form when we encounter electromagnetic waves including light. Here we have a case of motion without matter. What is oscillating when electric and magnetic field strengths oscillate? We say, the field itself. Yet what is the field but the potentiality of electricity and magnetism manifesting in space? Thus light waves are pure motion, pure potentiality manifesting and moving, having energy and momentum of motion: e vocati ve of Mathew Arnold's words about poetry: "Originality energizi ng in the field of beauty .. "

There are two other aspects of wave motion in space. First, we note that the wave is an extended entity. It is a case of extension, but extension which is governed by precise mathematical laws, extension without content but with intent. Second, we know that we can light a lamp and thus create light: the movement in space that is light can be created; and, equally well, destroyed. Energy in other forms like chemical energy or heat energy can be can verted to energy of pure movement, of waves in nothing: and that is something! Creation (and destruction) is transformation: so is light.

When we come to the domain of heat, and its movement, transformation and interplay with mechanical and electrical entities, we have the domain of thermodynamics. The basic entities in thermodynamics are "hidden motions" which we call "heat" and the concept of "entropy" or the motion of orderliness. Since other forms of energy can be converted into heat and heat can be utilized to generate other forms of energy and since there is a quantitative relation between heat and other forms of energy, we may identify heat with a certain kind of energy. Yet heat has the feature of flowing from hotter bodies into colder bodies by itself but never the other way around: if we want heat to go from a cooler body to a hotter body, we must expend work and be cunning about it. This universal phenomenon in everyday-scale systems gives rise to the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Entropy tends to increase in all natural processes.

Since the motions involved in heat are not directly visible to us, are hidden from us, what we are aware of are the indirect effects of it. But precisely because we are unaware of them directly, we may impose a new quality on them: that of order. It is a preconceived kind of order, of such a kind that natural processes tend to decrease it. To this order we assign a quantitative measure and call it entropy. Entropy is therefore a superimposition on motion, a value judgment imposed on dynamical configuations .. It is possible to do because of the human condition: if we were directly aware of each molecule or atom, we would not be able to deal with such superimpositions. We would then not be seeing the forest for the trees: nor the entropy for the atoms.

Heat as energy is conserved. As heat rises so does temperature, the level of heat. When objects at different temperatures are put together. the total heat energy must be unchanged, but it redistributes itself so that entropy tends to a maximum. When is entropy a minimum? When there is no disorder .. This means no disordered motion, no disordered configuration. When the temperature comes to its lowest possible value, then all motion comes to its minimum. When a body crystallizes, the regular arrangement of the atoms in the crystal corresponds to perfect order .. When the absolute zero is reached, entropy comes to a minimum, all disorder vanishes. This is the Third Law ofThermodynamics: Entropy is zero at absolute zero (of temperature).

In everyday life we do see the Second Law in action: things left to themselves deteriorate. But we also seem to see a reverse trend: of living systems which seem to make use of natural processes to create relative order; to preserve their functioning form, to reproduce themselves. Does this mean a counter-current, a violation of the Second Law? We hope not; and to the extent we deal withal! the activity and all the surroundings, entropy does increase. But the system itself tends to gain order. This behaviour of new order creating itself seems invariably to require open systems far from equilibrium in the presence of flow of matter andJor energy through the system. Life seems to be a special case of a "dissipative structure", one making use of the natural direction of processes to sustain itself. It is curious that the myth of creation and self-awareness given in the Aitareya Upanishad emphasizes this point in asserting the role assigned to apana vayu in providing sustenance for sentience. .

The Surrealistic Quantum Domain

When we come to the domain of the very small, the origins of chemical behaviour, the atomic and subatomic domain, we find that the kind of classical physics that we were dealing with is no longer satisfactory. A new kind of physics with an entirely new mathematical framework and startlingly new physical interpretation becomes necessary. This is the domain of the quantum. Yet, in a sense the story is very simple indeed. In classical physics we had objects and dynamical processes. They belonged to two different categories. Since energy and momentum were conserved. they were qualities that could be added to matter. But the processes of changing them, the actions on the dynamical entities: they belonged to a different category. But quantum physics makes the ultimate synthesis. Processes and Objects are the same! Matter and energy lose their primary significance as the sole stuff of the universe. Dynamics has become self-referring.

But this synthesis is bought at a price, a price we may not have been willing to pay if our study of subatomic physics did not force it on us. When processes and objects are treated on the same footing, we must deal with noncommutative mathematics. If two particles or chunks of matter were put together, they can be described easily. When matter acquires motion, we can still use ordinary arithmetic. But when motion and change of motion are included, they cannot be described In terms of elementary arithmetic. The order in which they come is important. AB is not the same as BA. Putting on one shoe and turn the other shoe are commutative operations. But putting on a sock and a shoe are not commutative: if you reverse the order, you would have a curiously shod foot!

This fundamental concommutativity contains within itself the revolution that quantum theory has brought about in the conceptual picture of the world. Even if we were not interested in the mathematical aspects of the description of nature, we must still be concerned about the changed conceptual framework. When two entities do not commute, we cannot assign numerical values to them simultaneously: we cannot have simultaneous information as all the dynamical quantities.

This is indeed a new feature: physical systems possess an "indescribable richness". No quality is unknowable, but if we set oursel ves up to measure or observe one quali ty, another q uali ty (whose representative mathematical quantity does not commute with that of the former) becomes unmeasurable. Every observation or measurement is only about a subset and hence, if we keep up our old language of description of the physical world, we would have to talk of uncertainties. Yet there is nothing uncertain, everything is fully orderly and harmonious. What we have is language incompatibility, a problem in translation.

One aspect of this new order of physics is the noncompatibility of position and momentum.

We cannot measure both of them at the same time. If we measure one precisely, the other becomes unobservable and therefore "uncertain". We could then only give vague and unsatisfactory pictures like a fuzzy streak, a wave packet. When we actually observe its position, a quantum particle manifests itself in some location, very much like a classical particle, individual and separate, localized and minuscule. Yet it seems to possess a magical existence in that it seems to propagate like a wave spread out and coherently extensive. Like the genie-from-the-bottle we cannot perceive how such an extended wave could remanifest as a point particle .. To allude to this curious behaviour we make use of such terms like "wave-particle dualism" and "collapse of the wave function". But there is no magic and no mystery beyond the recognition that we are dealing with a new order of reality, one which cannot be described properly in terms of traditional pictures. Like the blind men describing the elephant variously and curiously. so do we talk about quantum objects in classical language.

Another aspect of this process-object identification is the quantum principle of superposition and its mathematical counterpart, the probability amplitude. A classical object may be at one position P or another position Q. Sometimes it could be at some intermediate position between P and Q. But for a quantum particle there are, in addition to these possibilities, infinitely many other possibilities. It need not be at any position! Among such states are superpositions of states of being at P and being at Q, so that it is simultaneously both at P and at Q. It could be "more at P and less at Q" or the other way round. We then talk of probability amplitudes because unlike classical probabilities (which represent ignorance about the value of the quantity represented by a random variable) it is here a simultaneous presence at both places.

If states have such newness, motions can be even richer. Not only is there motion with values of the position changing, but it can also proceed through superpositions. A quantum object can move from P to Q through a sequence of states which do not correspond to the particle being anywhere in between at intermediate times! The motion of particle containing such curiosities it is not surprising that there are entirely unexpected (but desperately needed) phenomena that arise:

The discrete energy levels of atoms and the consequent sharp characteristic special lines, the nature of black-body radiation, the periodic system of elements, the nature of solids, liquids and gases, the origin of chemical behaviour and the existence of particles of light and other species. Matter in the large can sometimes manifest these effects in situations like superconductivity and superfluidity,

Creation and destruction appear in this context merely as changes of state of an underlying quantum field. We saw before that wave motion can be started at will, for example, by dropping a pebble in a pond. But the waves were extended disturbances. But in quantum theory with its wave-particle dualism the waves could manifest themselves as particles. In other words, the particles which appeared originally as the stuff of the universe can appear and disappear.

We have thus a surrealistic universe, one in which objects merge into processes and actions become incarnated as matter: a world in which one entity is in many configurations at the same time and the notions of separateness and individuality are merely projections of a structure which is indescribably richer .. It is a world where the wave is existent all over space and propagates accordingly. Yet whenever we attempt to measure its position, it appears in one position or the other. When we attempt to describe this reality in terms of its natural mathematical symbols, the system behaves in a predictable and simple fashion; but whenever we lapse into everyday language, we come across bizarre descriptions and uncertainties. We know what we talk about but any time we talk about it, it comes out inadequate.

In Search of Ourselves and Seven Worlds

We are sentient beings. Our experience of the everyday worlds most often comes in the form of sensations that are interpreted and comprehended. We have awareness of other things:

thoughts, feelings and their interplay. We observe "within" ourselves comprehension, discrimination, intelligence and awareness. Most of ail, weare aware of our being separate

i ndi viduated entities-that is, most of the time we are a ware of oursel ves as limi ted yet unique individuals. But there is a wide variety of experiences in the experiential existence. "e are aware of constant change and yet a changeless background against which the change is ascertained. We are aware that the comprehended worJd is different in different states of awareness. We talk often about the external world, yet what is it external to? Not to the body: since we comprehend the body too as the physical world. Identical configurations of ex tema I variables do not evoke the same feeling in us at all times. When we go to sleep or awake, who goes to sleep and who awakes? How do we know we can trust our judgement if we are so changeable? And how can we trust someone else when our perception of the person is different at different times?

When we attempt to comprehend the world, what we have are thoughts. We have thoughts about these thoughts. Where do thoughts arise and in what do they dissolve? What is the stuff of which thoughts are made?

For many purposes we can take a simple dynamical view: thoughts are like particles. Their motion is related to a chain of causes. There is a pattern to their movement. Mind may be treated, for these purposes, as a classical system. When we function in this mode, we consider ourselves logical. We can "explain" each and every development, each thought and conclusion and feeling. It is a good framework and its success makes us say such things as "Man is a rational being": and believe it! When we want to deal with our entire world and find these claims of rationality not obeyed, we look, just as in physics, for hidden movements and hidden influences. We introduce new entities like the personality, the will power, the instincts, the ideals. We speak of the functioning of the mind as jf it were a physical system with component parts. Freudian psychoanalysis refined this methodology to make it a creative art with its three-fold division into the id, the ego and the superego and the almost universal role it gave to sexuality. All the world was the public world of sentient awake people. Sleep and dream phenomena had to be seen in this light and became, in a sense, the theatre where delicate rearrangements were made by the mind. The mind which began as an attn bute of the body became, like energy, an enti ty to be considered almost to be the stuff of the world.

The i ndi viduation of the mi nd was an incomplete affai r. Interactions wi th other minds were to be taken into account. Much of the functioning of the mind, including its thought patterns and feelings, even the world picture it evolves became dependent on this interaction. Some wanted the world to involve para-human minds, gods and/or demons which acted upon minds but could, at best, only be partially influenced by minds.

All through this classical picture of the mind the origin of thought and its dissolution are not identified .. Since one thought had to disappear before a distinct one carne about in this picture, they

really could not influence one another, We either have to invoke some other common origin for thoughts; or think of an underlying field of which the modifications are thoughts just as waves manifest themselves as modifications of the underlying fluid,

Thoughts, at least when they are (mentally) articulated, appear individuated, just as if they were particles. Feelings, on the other hand, are not so and seem expansive and extended like waves: extended but without content. Thoughts can be created and destroyed but feelings propagate. We recognize the close similarity between the quantum field theory picture of quantum particles being created and absorbed, of waves propagating but when measured collapsing into localized particles which appear discrete and separate on the one hand: on the other, the picture of thoughts getting created and destroyed, feelings propagating but when examined logically, appearing as thoughts.

But if this correspondence is genuine and more than a mere analogy, we must have a background field for thoughts: and the indescribable richness, the problem of inadequacy of language and the noncommutative structure and the consequent superposition principle should all be relevant here too. If we take consciousness or awareness as the background field, the first requirement is satisfied. As to the other requirements, they, too, seem to be tailor-made for the

phenomenology of the mind. .

We have so far talked about the "safe" public waking state of awareness, But it is OUT experience that we do have other states of awareness, We do have dream-sleep; and while an onlooker may describe it or perform measurements and observations, the dreamer has a state of awareness and a corresponding worldview, It has many similarities with our waking worldview in that both the division into the individual and the "external" world persist, though to the awake observer this external world is an "internal world". The external world of the dreamer is by now means a copy of the awake observer's world, yet it shows many features: its more dreamy character stems from a more manifest superposition principle, a "flowing together" of thoughts and objects. In addition to this quasi-surrealist dream world we seem to have knowledge of a (dreamless) deepsleep state in w hi ch ex plici t indi viduation ceases and there is no sense of temporality or collapse of feeling into thoughts.

These are by no means the only states of our awareness, We have contemplative and meditative states when the need to have thoughts itself seems to cease: awareness flows continuously and harmoniously modifying itself. In some of these states one is intensely aware yet time is no fragmentation, One is aware of the world and other minds, but not so much as separate and discrete, but as parts of a system, This holistic perception is to be contracted with the fragmented view of the self as a limited separate entity struggling with an external world and subject to creation and destruction. Like feelings collapsing to thoughts, like waves collapsing to particles, so does the cosmic awareness collapse to the individual when it is subject to observation and logical analysis. Perhaps logical analysis is inappropriate to describe the richness of cosmic awareness.

There are other modalities of functioning. Contemplative states contain in themselves the awareness shifts seen as transition points. Perception of the transition points is perception of the background field. When this perception as well as the perception of the cosmic awareness get established, it is natural to expect to cognize the world 'itself as a manifestation of awareness,

Physics and Consciousness

These structural similarities suggest that we explore other patterns from physics. Are there any parallels to thermodynamics? Heat consists of disorganized random movements. What about random thoughts and influences on the mind? We talk of agitation and turbulence, of a disturbed mind, The second chapter of the Gita descri bes Arjun a's state of mind, agitated and confused, interfering with discrimination and purposive action, The same situation often confronts us at a difficult and stressful time. The resolution of such a complication consists in the quieting of the

mind, the resolution of the conflict, the increasing order, decreased stress and increased flexibility. Stress seems to correspond to entropy, to the degree of disorder. By its nature, mind's activities tend to accumulate stress, to "heat up". When it exceeds a certain degree, there is felt the need to cool the mind, to obtain 'santi. Random coupling to the external world, sain sara, leads to disorder and consequent misery, klesa, The resolution of the stress is to impose order, to become organized, to "become crystalline".

In everyday life, we know that a refrigerator produces cooling as long as it is connected to a source of electricity. We may see a parallel with this in the appeal to an "external" order-source, a total dependence on the ultimate source of all order; to saranagati, surrender to the Absolute, and thus a return to the state of innocence, to the lower entropy state.

It is interesting to note that we have even a correspondence to new structures forming far from equilibrium in an open system: great misfortunes and great sorrows often act as moments of spiritual insight and regeneration with consequent onset of a new state of being.

Creativity, the Realm of the Gods

Change of state of awareness raises certain questions of causality. All changes in the physical domain are in accordance with natural law: and the comprehension of the working of a system is the understanding of the causes of transitions. The causal connections are only one way of talking about the unfolding of the natural evolution of a dynamical system. Such a system, like the planets in motion around the sun, contains within the present condition all its past and all its future. There are no surprises and there are no options. Given a more elaborate system we have the possibilities of self-interaction and a dynamic inertia: the system has differing inertia in differing conditions. And there are situations in which the dynamic inertia vanishes. At such exceptional configurations any trace influence can have enormous influence to bring about marked changes in behaviour .. On the one hand the occurrence of theseexceptional configurations limit the predictability of the behaviour of the dynamical system. On the other hand their junction points provide exceptional opportunities for action, since by the "merest flick of the eyelid" one can brag about the desired effect. The limits of causality coincides with the incidence of efficient actions when little more than a firm wish is necessary to be effective in achievement!

The same considerations apply in the domain of the mind. The everyday mode is a logical causal modality where everything is caused. That which acts in this manner is entailed, not free. It is prakrti, nature. It is very different from the creative self, the purusa. As Patanjali says: sattwa purusa yoratyantah sankimayoh pratya visesah bhogah pararthat svartha samyamat purusa jfianam [Nature and Self are quite different but not seen so by virtue of participation; when the autonomy rather than entailment is sought, then knowledge of the Self]. Search for creativity brings us to the limits of causality.

There is another curious circumstance in the consideration of causality pertaining to shifts in the states of awareness. When awareness changes, so does the world cognized. So causes, if they have any meaning experientially, they must be in the surviving state of awareness. But that universe did not exist in the earlier state. So either the two states of awareness coexist more or less in the neighbour head of the junction point, or the cause is in the future rather than in the past. It is not past traces, vasana, that cause the "crossing over" but the shadow of the future, the sainkalpa. And when one is in the cosmic awareness or beyond, there are no causes because there is nothing that is different from the self and no fragmentation. It is a wholeness moving in itself, a system without parts. So the enlightened states are, strictly speaking, not caused at all: ahetuka, without cause.

Physics as a Spiritual Practice

The path to integrated awareness is the path to more efficient action, the path of reduction of entropy of the mind, of the restoration of the unfragmented state .. It is not a path of changing the world "out there" but of changing the world by changing the state of awareness. It is an empirical method and a path of experiment. One has to participate to benefit. Any method that leads to it is a "coming together", a yoga. It is a case of tuning into existence, of abandoning individuation not by an intellectual process but by an overwhelming "happening".

Maharishi (Great Seer) Patanjali treats it in capsule form in his "yoga sutra" where he begins by defining yoga as yoga citta vrtti nirodha (yoga is the stopping of the random movements of the intellect) and goes on to describe and deduce the steps in cognition and discipline involved in yoga. At one point he mentions isvara pranidhanarn va (by surrendering to the Absolute) as a discipline for the quieting of mind. The important thing is the emphasis given to practice. Maharishi

Mahesh Yogi follows much the same pattern: the twin streams of practice and of conceptual understanding. The body refines itself to realize the full potential inherent in it; and the mind reacts more efficiently. If one looks carefully, Patanjali's sutra collection involves both procedural instructions and conceptual deductions: each sutra is both! As one becomes aware of the transcendental awareness of the junctions between the waking-dreaming, dreaming-sleeping, sleeping-waking states and thus becomes stabilized, this awareness permeates these time states.

The next step is the ability to short-circuit the causal connections until one is able to cognize the finest causes, the very wellsprings of divine creativity, the realm of the gods. These in tum lead to the cosmic awareness and ultimately to the cognition of the various states of awareness including the world to be or the Self "at play", the identity-in-variety.

A Language Problem

There is a fundamental language problem here. When the transcendental mode is described in terms of the phenomenal, all kinds of semantic difficulties crop up. The description contains gaps, randomness, non-sequiturs, uncertainties and mysteries. Yet there is nothing mysterious or uncertain: it appears as the most natural when one is in that state of awareness. We encounter the same difficulty in physics when a quantum system is described in language appropriate to classical objects. They are language-incompatible. Yet the human intelligence has no difficulty in dealing with a guantum system: the difficulty is in translating the intimately known system into an inappropriate language.

There is a legend in the Old Testament about "men being of one mind making a tower reaching up to the heavens, the abode of the gods. And the gods came down to see the men working; and somewhat mischievously confused their tongues. That place was called Babel." Clearly the gods knew that the linear 'logical articulated word was not the way to enlightenment!

It is interesting to recognize some parallels in the functioning of the human brain. Apparently the two halves of the brain, while they have some functions residing in both hemispheres, there are some functions which occur dominantly in one hemisphere only. In particular, language ability seems to reside chiefly in the left hemisphere along with deductive linear logical thinking. The right hemisphere is mute, but seems to be the locus for intuitive and creative functioning. There are therefore situations in which we know what we know but every effect at articulation fails. We know we do not succeed in talking about it: it is as if someone else is doing the talking and making a bad job of interpreting or conveying our insight! Along with Satyavrata we may say: He who has seen cannot speak but he who speaks has not seen! In those rare times when the intuitive understanindg of the right brain is conveyed to the left brain, then we have a truly creative moment as Kahidesa says:

vagartheviva samprktan vagartha pratipattaye jagata pitaram vande parvati paramesvaran

(Like the progenitors of the Universe Parvati and Paramesvara complement each other and are in union, so let word and idea come together to convey meaning.) Some of this difficulty comes from

the differing worldviews and the consequent motivations, but part of it undoubtedly stems from the classical modality of the left brain and the quantum modality of the right brain.

Privilege of Being a Scientist

Spiritual discipline is the proces to end all processes, a means of restoring coherence and wholeness, a means of "tuning in". The only way to comprehend it and benefit from it is to be doing it. Having become aware of matter, energy and the empty field of potentiality as visva, taijasa and prjfia, one becomes aware of their kinematics and their dynamics. This cognition is the discovery of the nascence of creati vi ty: creati vi ty flourishes at the Fringe of causali ty. When this gets established, when time, space and causality themselves are seen manifested in the self-referring cognition, then one sees only unity-in-difference.

In this seeing is the yoga of Physics, the privilege of being a scientist. Physics is a spiritual discipline since it aims to comprehend all that i-s dynamic in a single magnificent vision. What is the use of physical law if it is not for short-circuiting all causally connected events over the time into a connectivity transcending time and space, a web of connections. The knowable having been known ceases to be. Physics came, not to establish law and order, but to render them so transparent and thus deny even the intermediate steps in the chain of connection: what remains are either apparently unconnected events, or connections and causes too subtle to be identified as such. So the true calling of the sci en tist is to eli min ate the known so that onl y the unknown remains. Contemplation on these in tum produces new understanding, eliminating still more components and connections. Thus science dissolves .away the world gradually but steadily. It is the tandava nrtta of siva.

Being a scientist is to practise yoga just as practising yoga one is being a scientist. Thus is the causal world overcome so that the divine dominion of creativity is regained. All choice has now vanished leaving only a "choiceless awareness". Being a scientist is to be a Seer, a rsi; is practise welding together a fragmented universe. This integrative technique is the true content of science and enables knowledge to rise of itself. So it is said that

Akhanda mandalakaram Vyaptam yenacaracaram Tat padam darsitam yena Tasmai sri guraveh namah

(For hi m, who enables the visi on of the truth as an indi vi si ble uni verse encompassing the static and the dynamic, my salutationsl): But it is also said that

arandeti abhyasat

(Happiness is by virtue of practice.) This practice is Physics.

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