By H.M. Bhushan
The most wonderful thing I experienced is not a supercomputer or the universe but I myself ? But who and what am I?
In India as a person is born multiple identities creep up- by gender as male or female, by category as General, OBC, ST or SC, by religion as Hindu, Sikh, Christian or Muslim. In context to North East India, he or she may also be identified by ethnicity also as Boro, Adi, Mizo, Naga, Kuki or Meitei. Outside the India, he or she may be identified as Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi or American.
The age of science and technology fails to answer ‘who am I?’ It fails to answer and solve it’s consequences as well. Closing my eyes, I saw my spiritual master. I felt a voice, a voice with no loudness, yet spoke to me ‘Thou are not the body, but a spirit’. I was awaken. My body changes from infanthood to childhood then to manhood but I remain the same I. My body is material (made of matter ie. chemicals such as carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, sulfur etc.) but ‘I’ a spirit. Identifying ‘I’ with the body is the greatest illusion. It is the cause of all troubles and tension within the self and in the society. The envy, anger, the false ego that ‘I am a Meitei or Naga or a kuki or an American’ arises from this illusion. That ‘this is my land, my tribe, my community’ etc. arises from the delusion. All crises in the society, state, country and among countries arise from the misconception of body with ‘I’ and its extensions.
The editorial of The Imphal Freepress dated 26th July 2011 ‘ A lot in a name’ suggest an answer to identity crisis will resolve many tensions in the society. A solution to this problem and an answer to ‘who am i?’is presented in Brhadaranyaka Upanisad 1.4.10 which states “Aham brahmasmi” I (the spirit soul) am Brahman (spirit) ie. I am a spirit. This statement unifies all humankind. In simple words, we are not Mizos, Naga, Kuki or Meitei nor Hindu, Sikh, Christian or Muslim. We are a conscious spiritual being. This scientific and spiritual truth unifies all humans and will bring peace within oneself and in the society. There will be no Mizos, no Naga no Kuki nor any Meitei neither any Hindu, Sikh, Christian or Muslim, not even Indian or Pakistani. No divisions based on body.
What are the scientific evidences of ‘I am not this body but spirit?’
The human body (and all living beings) is a finely tuned machine. It contains many organs, thousands of tissues and trillions of cells. A typical cell contains as many as 2oo trillion molecules all executing thousands of coordinated reactions and functions with precise timings. In other words, all components in our body changes continously, yet I remain the same I. All cells divides and dies as well. Erythrocytes (RBC) in our blood have a plasma life of about 120 days ie. they are being replaced every 120 days in our body. And I remain the same I. And also, My body grows from a single cell then born as a baby then grows to infanthood. It is then grows to childhood then to manhood but I remain the same I. That ‘I am not this body but spirit’ can also be understood in our languages expressed by our mind as well. We use to say this is my nose, my hand, my eyes (like my clothes, my pen), my body but not I body. This is true in all languages of humankind.
Is life form from matter? Am ‘I’ a product of matter and not a spiritual entity?
Consciousness is the symptom of Life – the ‘I’, a spiritual entity. Matter (chemicals) cannot produce consciousness. Matter however; complex (say a super fast supercomputer) will never be conscious. Sir Roger Penrose, Rose Ball Professor of Mathematics, Oxford University, UK said, ‘I say computers will never be conscious.’ Sir Fred Hoyle FRS, Astronomer, University of Cambridge, UK said, “The origin of life (from matter) is like a tornado blowing over a junkyard and assembling a working Boeing 747.” Dr.Thoudam Damodar Singh (His Holiness Bhaktisvarupa Damodara swami), asked Stanley Miller when he visited for a demonstration on Miller Experiment during his university days in USA. “Suppose you were given all the necessary cellular chemicals. Could you create a living cell in a test tube?” Stanley Miller replied, ‘I don’t know.’ Dr Damodara when he latter renounced the worldly affairs (sannyasi) and later become a guru elucidates, “Atoms and molecules have no meaning. They become meaningful, however, only in association with life (atma), spiritual entity.” That life is a spirit and not a product of matter is missing in all schools and universities textbooks.
What is the scriptural proof about the nature soul or spirit?
1. Brhad-aranyaka Upanisad 1.4.10 states “Aham brahmasmi” I (the spirit soul) am Brahman (spirit).
2. Bhagavad Gita 2.22 states, “As a person puts on new garments, giving up old ones, the soul similarly accepts new material bodies, giving up the old and useless ones.”
More proofs are given in Bhagavad Gita viz.2.13, 2.17, 2.20, 2.23 to 2.28, 13.31 to 13.35, 15.17 One may also add evidences from other scriptures as well.
Bhagavad Gita 2.29 further elucidates, “Some look on the soul as amazing, some describe him as amazing, and some hear of him as amazing, while others even after hearing about him, cannot understand him at all.”
What is the ultimate (highest) and absolute (ie. regardless of time, ethnicity or religion) good for all humankind?
Self-realization- the realization of the relationship between the self, nature and God. Scriptures says that ‘I am a spirit and not the body (and its extension)’ is the foundation for self-realization. With advancement, self realization leads to love of God.
Government and other organizations may popularize that we are all spirit soul and are same spiritually. We should not identify ourselves base on body identification and its extension, which are temporary, but on spirit soul which is pure and eternal. Teachers, parents, educators should educate the students. Schools and universities textbooks should include the unification of humankind. Mass media may also publicize this panacea of all sufferings. The Government of this small state Manipur can be the first in the world to recognize and popularize the importance of unification of humankind and science and spirituality.
Science and Spirituality will play a major role in educating the society. The government may also observe a particular day as science and spirituality day at state and national level. All applications of Science and Spirituality such as unification of humankind, Consciousness Study, Evolution, Bio Ethics, Origin of Life and Universe may also be explored. Many renowned scientists such as Nobel laureates Charles Townes, Werner Arber, William D Philips are inquiring into the relationship between science and spirituality. In India also, eminent professors from IITs such as Prof. Sudipto Gosh, Prof. Bijoy Boruah, Prof. Kanchan Chowdhury, Prof. Shishir Kumar Dube and other well-known personalities such as P.B.Sharma, VC, Rajiv Ghandhi Technological University, Bhopal, Ajeet K. Mall, Analog Devices, Bangalore, Sushant Sharma, TCS, Mumbai etc are actively engaged in exploring the relationship between science and spirituality. The Templeton Prize (£1,000,000 sterling.) honors a living person who has made an exceptional contribution to affirming life`s spiritual dimension. Sir John Templeton Foundation (www.templeton.org/) also funds research into Life’s greatest questions. These questions range from explorations into the laws of nature and the universe to questions on the nature of love, gratitude, forgiveness, and creativity. One may also seek funds for research related to science and spirituality and its applications. Dr. Manmohan Singh, Prime Minister of India said, “There is no contradiction between science and spirituality; indeed it can be argued that the two are complementary.” Dr.Thoudam Damodar Singh (His Holiness Bhaktisvarupa Damodara swami) had initiated the Science and Spirituality (www.binstitute.org) for the understanding of self, Nature, and the Universe, for self and world Peace, for unification of Humankind, Interfaith dialogue and much more. In India and the world, many learned people, philosophers and scientist are fondly remembering him on his appearance day (birthday) the 6th of October. Here in Manipur, a small group of his students are praying for his blessing. Finally to conclude, I pray that with the understanding that “I am not this body but an atma”, a day will finally manifest where all people are learned, eternally happy and God conscious irrespective of caste, colour, creed, ethnicity or nationality. Into that paradise of knowledge, love and bliss, let the country and people awake.
Author can be contacted at [email protected]