Science and Spirituality
- COLLECTION:PREETHAM&nb sp; SAI P
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- Science and Spirituality
There is a combination of only two in the world: �this� and �that�. There�s
nothing more than this, that�s all! �This� is what you call science, and
�that� is what you call spirituality. The worldly people limit themselves to
�this�, or science only. Seekers, aspirants, sages, saints, seers, and
theists - they all seek �that�, what you call �spirituality�. But we, as Sai
devotees, let us understand that both �this� and �that� are one. Ultimately
we�ll come to know that. So �this� is science and �that� is spirituality.
But �Both are one� is the reality.
Let us discuss a few points as put forward by Bhagavan. What is science?
Science is the study; science is the observation; science is knowledge,
which is below the senses, below the level of the senses. All that you see,
all that you hear, all that you touch, all that you smell - all of those are
relating to the sense organs. Below senses is science: �this� is below
senses, whereas �that� is above senses, or beyond senses. The eye cannot
see, the ear cannot hear, the skin cannot touch, and neither can the nose
ever smell �that�. So �that� is above senses.
As Bhagavan calls it, this science is the split of love. So, split of love
is science, whereas the spirit of love is spirituality.
Then Bhagavan speaks of a third point. Science, after all, is incomplete.
However well we may study, however deeply we might investigate, however
clearly we might inquire into it, yet science is always incomplete. Why?
What science declared sometime ago is denied today. What science invents
today will be negated tomorrow. It only means that science is not constant.
Science goes on changing depending upon the equipment available on hand and
the understanding of the mind.
So science is incomplete like the letter �C�. �C� begins there and ends
there, with the hollow cavity, with the hollow space inside. So science is
incomplete, whereas spirituality is like the letter �O�, which is full:
�Poorna Madah, Poorna Midam.� That is full. So, spirituality is fullness. It
is never incomplete.
Science speaks of �thwam� i.e. 'you', whereas spirituality speaks of �that�,
�thath�. �Thath� is �that�. �Thwam� is �this�. So science is thwam, while
spirituality is thath. The scientist goes on thinking of this creation, the
world, whereas the spiritual man thinks of the Creator behind it. There
cannot be any effect without the cause. After all, life is the combination
of cause and effect. Scientists think of the effect, while the spiritual man
thinks of the cause.
Science Is Like Scissors That Cut
Science, as Bhagavan says, is like a pair of scissors that cuts and divides.
Today we have basic sciences, super sciences, and super specialties. I do
not remember whether I gave this example to you or not�anyway, it is worth
recalling. A person with a dental problem, a toothache, went to a doctor in
Bombay. �Oh Doc! I'm suffering from toothache.� And the doctor asked, �OK,
which jaw? Upper jaw or lower jaw?� The patient said, �Oh doctor, my lower
jaw teeth are paining.� The doctor said, �I'm sorry. I'm a specialist in the
upper jaw. Go to the next dentist.� (Laughter)
So, the patient goes to the other dentist and says, �Hi, Doctor! I know
you�re a specialist and my teeth are giving me a lot of pain.� That
gentleman asked, �OK, I'm a specialist; but I want to know if it is the
front teeth or the teeth behind, the incisors or the molars that are
bothering you?" "Well, Doctor, it is the back teeth that are paining.� �I am
sorry, I am an expert in the front teeth only. So, go next door.�
So like this, specialization and super-specialization land us in confusion.
That�s what science is - a scissors. Just as scissors help us to cut, to
divide, science divides, whereas a needle stitches together small pieces.
Take the example of a tailor. You take a cloth to your tailor. The tailor
will just cut them into pieces and with the help of the needle, stitch them
all together making them into a shirt. Am I clear? Likewise, a needle
stitches pieces into a single garment. Spirituality is like a needle, while
science is like scissors.
Science is something like becoming. You become a scientist; you are not born
a scientist. You become a scientist because of your interest and
inquisitiveness. That is all. You are not born a scientist. No one is ever
born a scientist. So, science is becoming, whereas you are the very being.
You are spiritual. Your very being is existential. You are existence. You
are the very being, you are not becoming.
Science is a matter of questioning: I go on questioning, �Why, what, where,
when, how?� Science must necessarily answer all these questions. So, science
is a matter of eternal questions! I go on questioning in order to know the
basic facts of life.
But spirituality is not a question. It is a quest - a quest meaning a
search, a quest - to inquire, a quest - a meditation, a quest -
contemplation. A quest is a search, infinite and indefinite. So, while
science is a question, spirituality is a quest. These are all the points
that Bhagavan made.
Explanation and Exclamation
Science gives you an explanation. A burning splinter burns brilliantly in
the presence of oxygen. Why does it burn? Because of oxygen. Why does it
not? Because of hydrogen. Everything has got an explanation. Science should
give an explanation. And if it does not explain, it cannot be scientific. If
it is scientific, it requires an explanation. Science and explanation go
together. That which cannot be explained is not science at all.
But spirituality is not explanation. It is an exclamation, with wonder and
awe, a thrill, full of grandeur and excitement. It is not given to any
explanation. It is only exclamation: �AHH! I saw Swami! WOW!� That�s it.
(Laughter) There�s no explanation. It is only exclamation!
In science, there is what we call a sort of experiment and inference. You do
some experiment. On the basis of observation, you draw some inference.
Science requires three things - experiment, observation and inference. �This
is the experiment, these are my observations and this is my inference.�
Spirituality is not like that. It is experience. Spirituality is experience
- experience of the Reality. It is nothing like observation and inference,
Solved and Dissolved
In science, there is always a problem to be solved. If there is no problem,
then there is no science at all. So, a scientist is always after one problem
or another and he becomes problematic. So, a scientist is problematic, while
science is a problem. Why? It was Einstein who said, �I don�t want to be
born again as a scientist. If I am to be born again, I would like to be born
as a carpenter.� He was very ashamed of his inventions, his scientific
research and the theories on atom bombs, which caused the destruction of a
large number of people. He felt ashamed of his career as a scientist.
So the point is, science is a problem to be solved. But spirituality is not
like that. It is a mystery wherein you get dissolved. Something is solved:
there in science, while you are dissolved here in spirituality. You do not
exist there in spirituality!
Bhagavan passes by along the darshan line. He looks at you, you look at Him.
There is a smile, an exchange of looks - ah! That�s all. �Wow! What happened
to you?� �Well, I don�t know what happened!� (Laughter) Before you had a
castor oil face then. But when Swami looks, your face starts burning like a
thousand candles or bulbs. Why? That�s it; there�s no explanation.
So the point is, spirituality is a mystery to be dissolved, not a problem to
be solved like in science. You dissolve. As Bhagavan talks to us, as
Bhagavan grants an interview, the kind of thrill we have, the way we walk,
the way the face shines brilliantly with all its radiance - well, it is all
because you got dissolved!
After the interview, as devotees come out of the interview room and start
sharing their experiences, watch their faces. They forget what they are -
their accomplishments, their positions, they forget all. They go on
explaining things; they go on telling, �See, He saw us from there. We
started walking over there. He just wanted�� �Ah, I see!� Why? He got
himself dissolved. There is no question of 'I-ness' here. There is no
question of ego here. There is no question of identity here. There is no
question of body identification or position, consciousness or personality
awareness, no, no! You got dissolved, that�s it. So science is just what we
call - it needs to be solved. Spirituality requires to be dissolved.
source: anil kumar sathsangh
collection: preetham sai p.v.
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