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कृण्वन्तो विश्वमार्यम्

Inner Sciences: Why and What to Expect? - Dr. Harish Chandra

Inner Sciences: Why and What to Expect?

It is interesting to note that all living species – animals, birds, fish, insects, etc. – are a composite of body, mind and soul, and so is true with the human beings. Yet, we are very different from all other species. There are two important features that distinguish us from other species. First and foremost is our intellectual faculty. Other species are largely programmed that they function pre-dominantly through their instinct.

On the other hand, we are least programmed. Our instinctive knowledge is minimal. However, we have been provided with a powerful intellectual faculty and are expected to function pre-dominantly intellectually. Thus, instinct versus intellect is the first unique feature differentiating us from others.

The second feature that makes us different from others is our needs, wants and expectations. Imagine a dog, for example. If supplied sufficient quantity of good food, a small doghouse and a mate – the dog will most likely lead a contented life. It cannot imagine anything more. But a human being is always interested in upgrading his state of happiness. If all his sensual desires are met then he has a long list of emotional, mental, intellectual, creative goals, and so on. If nothing else, he is disturbed because of the poor state of other fellow beings, environment, flora and fauna, and what not.

I have earlier conveyed these two features by pointing towards our two faculties, namely, the head and heart. Symbolically, our head represents the intellectual faculty and our heart represents the ability to sense pleasure and pain, in the layman's connotations that the words head and heart carry. I am of the firm opinion that any effort of a human being should be weighed against both head and heart. Center for Inner Sciences will always attempt to keep this in mind. Indeed, this is why I called spirituality as "the inner sciences". The word "sciences" implicitly means that the intellectual faculty will be fully utilized – the "head" domain. And, the word "inner" means that our attempts will always be towards getting into the innermost domain of an issue – the "heart" of the matter in a manner that the intellectual attempt should be pleasant and the final objective must be pleasant as well.

Thus, "inner sciences" will represent our intellectual effort, which if done properly, will lead to the absolute pleasure. My approach will be slow and cautious. It will be balanced so much so that both our head and heart will participate and gain equally. Neither will it be a dry mental gymnastics and nor will it be superstitious and dogmatic.

Why to engage in inner sciences? This is essential because it utilizes the unique features of the human beings in a very productive and constructive manner. Those who tilted more towards "the science" did use the intellectual faculty well but didn't care to focus on the basic inner needs of the human beings. The lopsided approach did not result in a holistic advancement of the human beings. The result is the scientific and technological advancements that led to degradation of the environment (ozone layer hole, acid rain, greenhouse effect, oil crisis, extinction of species, etc.) and mass killings through wars fought with sophisticated war machines and nuclear bombs.

Those who tilted more towards "inner" – the people following one religion or another – have caused untold miseries through conflicts and strife. The religious warlords divided the humanity among their zones of influence. Such a mad race void of positive thinking has caused the largest ever number of conflicts and wars. What was supposed to give solace to our innermost core has deserted us even from the most trivial joys of living. The current spread of terrorism also owes its existence to such a one-sided approach.

I can confidently say that inner sciences will bring a positive shift to our way of thinking – to think rationally and scientifically on the issues that relate to the innermost core of every human being. If properly done, our efforts will certainly give rise to a new wave of universal brotherhood, love and peace based on a set of deep and lasting human values.

Having made some remarks on science and religion, it would make sense to make a comparative study of science and religion in the next article.

- Dr. Harish Chandra
B. Tech. (IIT Kanpur, India)

Ph. D. (Princeton, USA)

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Nice Article

Nice Article