Banyan Tree - Banyan Tree - Jan 2006
by Life Positive
Temple of Science
“I dedicate today this institute as not merely a laboratory but a temple. In the pursuit of my investigations I was unconsciously led into the border region of physics and physiology. To my amazement, I found boundary lines vanishing, and points of contact emerging, between the realms of the living and non-living. Inorganic matter was perceived as anything but inert; it was athrill under the action of multitudinous forces...
“The work already carried out in the Bose laboratory on the response of matter, and the unexpected revelations in plant life, have opened out very extended regions of inquiry in physics, in physiology, in medicine, in agriculture, and even in psychology. Problems hitherto regarded as insoluble have now been brought within the sphere of experimental investigation...
“But high success is not obtained without rigid exactitude... All creative scientists know that the true laboratory is the mind, where behind illusions they uncover the laws of truth...
“The lectures given here will not be mere repetitions of second-hand knowledge. They will announce new discoveries demonstrated for the first time in these halls… They will become public property. No patents will ever be taken. The spirit of our national culture demands that we should forever be free from the desecration of utilizing knowledge only for personal gain...
“...science is neither of the East nor of the West but rather international in its universality, yet India is specially fitted to make great contributions. The burning Indian imagination, which can extort new order out of a mass of apparently contradictory facts, is held in check by the habit of concentration. This restraint confers the power to hold the mind to the pursuit of truth with an infinite patience.”
From a speech given by Jagadish Chandra Bose at the opening of the Bose Institute, Kolkata. Excerpted from Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda
What God can Do
Emperor Sangam, a devout king, regularly invited scholars for metaphysical discussions. In this, he was aided by his able and pious minister. His young son, however, thoroughly disapproved of this practice.
“I want your minister to convince me that God exists,” the prince one day demanded. “Mantriji, I expect you to give me such a proof tomorrow or otherwise publicly accept that there is no such thing and you were simply making a fool of yourself and wasting our time all these years.”
The minister was in a quandary. He knew the prince was not interested in understanding God but in disproving His existence. How could such a person be convinced? Seeing him so troubled, his loyal cook asked him what was wrong. When the minister explained his predicament, he said, “Allow me to solve your problem, master. Just tell the prince that even your cook would be able to prove this fact.” Skeptical, the minister helplessly agreed.
Invited to court the next day, the cook requested that he be seated on a higher level than the prince, as he was playing the role of a ‘guru’. The prince, though reluctant, had to agree.
Seated majestically, the cook then asked, “Tell me, O prince, do you think it is possible to combine black and green and produce white?”
The prince shook his head.
“How then can you explain that a black cow eating green grass produces white milk?”
The prince had no answer.
“It is God alone who can make such a thing happen,” explained the cook wisely.
“See another miracle. I, your minister’s cook, am seated at a higher level than yourself. Would you ever have thought that such a thing was possible unless God willed it so?”
Embarrassed, the prince had the grace to finally accept his mistake.
Only for my Sister
Just one of those little incidents that reinforces your faith in God, reminding you that the Divine does exist, manifesting itself in all the various heroic and noble deeds of everyday people.
Sanmesh Kalyanpur, a Class IX student of St. Xavier’s School in Fort, Mumbai, and all but 13 years of age, is indeed the stuff heroes are made of. On July 29, 2005, when Mumbai was grappling with floods brought about by the worst downpour in her history, Sanmesh was leading his seven-year-old sister Sanjana home from school. While navigating the heavily waterlogged Nana Chowk area near Grant Road, Sanjana’s leg got caught in an open drain. Trying to help his sister out, Sanmesh too started slipping into the hole. However, he did not relent. Wedged precariously on the edge of the whirling vortex, held in place only by his bag, Sanmesh managed to help his sister out safely.
A local star in the Talmiki Wadi in Tardeo where the Kalyanpurs live, Sanmesh has been feted for his heroic deed by various organizations; He will be the only representative from Maharashtra to receive the Sanjay Chopra bravery award from President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam during a ceremony to be held during the Republic Day celebrations on January 26, 2006.
But for Sanmesh surely, the greatest reward would be that his sister is alive and well today and his greatest joy, perhaps her words, “My brother loves me so much that I knew no harm would come to me. I’m alive today because of him and he deserves the award every bit.”
Sanmesh however modestly shrugs off allusion to any heroism on his part. “What I have done is not bravery, it was my responsibility,” he says. “Bringing my sister safely back home from school was my responsibility and I did just that. Getting the awards is just incidental.”
Essential to the unique view of our world as propounded by the Vedas, ‘mithya’ refers to the illusory nature of all creation. According to it, the cosmos, as experienced by our senses, simply does not exist. The entire universe, including the stars and planets, the earth and everything present on it, is an illusion, an ‘apparent reality’ created by none other than our own perceptions. They are but manifestations of Brahman, the actual Reality underlying everything.
This concept of mithya is now also reflected by developments in quantum physics which suggests that the scientist’s notion of the world, as a series of particles of matter, is nothing but the result of our human perception operating on such a ‘frequency’. In reality, suggests quantum physics, the world is comprised merely of waves having possibilities. It is when we observe them that these waves collapse to form the actual events of our experience.
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