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Brain-Mind and Consciousness Studies, some references from BA Goswami

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  • Bhakti Ananda Goswami <bhakti.eohn@veriz
    Subject: re karmic preferences/tendencies manifesting as Theosophy, RC, Bhakti yoga, science, history, etc ... ... RC, Bhakti ... Dear Paul Mauri and
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 9, 2003
      Subject: re karmic preferences/tendencies manifesting as Theosophy,
      RC, Bhakti yoga, science, history, etc ...

      >Mauri <mhart@...> wrote:

      >Date: Thu, 09 Jan 2003 09:43:46 -0500
      >From: Mauri
      >To: "theos-talk@yahoogroups.com"
      >CC: Theosophy Study List ,
      >"kpauljohnson "
      >Subject: re karmic preferences/tendencies manifesting as Theosophy,
      RC, Bhakti
      >yoga, science, history, etc ...

      >The following excerpt is from an article entitled "Quest for
      >the Devine," in the Feb. 2002 issue of the Reader's Digest
      >(by Vince Rause, from "Los Angeles Times Magazine"). I
      >thought it might help in breaking, instead of making, some
      >karma around here, maybe. I'm referring to some recent
      >posts that tend to display various biases, preferences,
      >karma. But then, of course I'm speculating, again.

      >Here's the excerpt:

      ><<the Univer­sity of Pennsylvania, at a restaurant in
      >suburban Philadelphia. Newberg and I have met to discuss
      >his biological theory of religion, which he be­lieves
      >provides a neurological basis for the human hunger for
      >God. The theory has made the 35-year-old a leading figure
      >in the emerging sci­ence of neurotheology, which
      >ex­plores the links between spirituality and the brain.
      >Newberg tells me something I'm not sure I can grasp: The
      >fabled "higher reality" described by mys­tics might, in
      >fact, be real.

      Dear Paul Mauri and theosophist Friends,

      In 1990 I represented J.M. Richards Biophysics Laboratories at the
      First International Conference of the Study of Consciousness Within
      Science. This conference was organized by my Madhva-Gaudiya-
      Bhaktivedanta lineage Vaishnava god-brothers at the B. I. (see
      below), and was attended by such scientific luminaries as Dr. George
      Wald. My Father, Ralph L. Sherman Senior, an electrobiophysicist,
      was a pioneer in EEG, who patented the first computerized method of
      EEG analysis, and was instrumental in the founding and development of
      the biophysics field's Society For Mathematical Biology. Because my
      mother was ill, Dad could not attend the conference. So, as a
      Research Associate of the J.M.R. Labs, I attended in his place. This
      was personally meaningful to me in that it afforded me the
      opportunity to meet with some of my Father's old international
      friends from the Society of Mathematical Biology. At one point
      during the proceedings, Dr. Robert Rosen said "None of us would be
      here today if it wasn't for your Father". This was a reference to
      the fact that my Father materially supported the foundational
      international work of the Society for years, funding publication,
      conferencing, the work of various Society members, their
      international travel, university and private laboratory set-up, and
      even supporting the families of oppressed scientists from behind
      the 'Iron Curtain' to the extent of taking care of income for their
      basic needs. He took personal risks to help these people
      professionally and personally. On one occasion he smuggled
      literature including a Bhagavad-gita into a Russian
      Orthodox 'Communist' scientist who wanted it, and later secretly
      housed an escaped Rumanian scientist who was then granted permanent
      asylum in America. At the conference, everyone there had been
      influenced in some way by the formative work of the Society, and so
      Dr. Rosen wanted to acknowledge Dad's unique contribution as one of
      the Society's most committed founders and benefactors. Another
      recipient of my Father's anonymous sacrifices has been myself. His
      efforts are why I am able to make any contribution today. All his
      life he has worked invisibly empowering other people. He worked
      hard, earned a fortune and gve it all away helping others. He never
      sought recognition for himself in anything that he did. The above
      paragraph is my little tribute to him, a man unknown to the world,
      whose sacrifices have influenced the lives of many.

      Over the years I have worked as a research assistant to my Father,
      and currently we are working on publishing a retrospective edition of
      ORGANISMIC SETS by Dr. Nicholas Rashevsky, one of my Dad's personal
      mentors, and the 'Father' of the field of Mathematical Biology /
      Biophysics. All of the current scientific brain-mind 'consciousness'
      research is based in biophysics. It is amazing how far we have
      come. I remember in the 1960s when Dad used to pay 25 cents an hour
      for us teenagers to sleep in his EEG lab for REM studies. I remember
      the 'road hypnosis' EEG studies Dad did for the government to
      determine what was the link between the lack of visual stimulous and
      altered states of consciousness in high alitude jet pilots. My own
      interest in consciousness took me into the study of it in history and
      religion. Now things seem to have come full-circle, and here we are,
      discussing 'neurotheology'.

      For those seriously interested in cutting-edge science regarding
      consciousness, I recommend the Bhaktivedanta Institute as a
      resource. If you are in the San Francisco Area, pay them a visit, or
      if they are having a colloquium, check it out. Their publications
      are usually very technical, but if science is what you want, B.I.
      publications are a resource that focuses real science on the issues
      of consciousness.

      David Sherman, Research Associate, J.M.R. Laboratories, Biophysics

      ( aka Bhakti Ananda Goswami)

      ps I am not affiliated in any way with the B.I.

      *******************************************************************

      BHAKTIVEDANTA INSTITUTE REFERENCES

      http://www.bvinst.edu/gradstudies/body-frame.htm

      The Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai (B.I.) is a research and
      educational Institute, with centers in Bombay and San Francisco. The
      Institute promotes consciousness-related research and study within
      mainstream scientific disciplines. It organized the First
      International Conference on the Study of Consciousness Within Science
      in 1990 in San Francisco. Fourteen invited speakers, including three
      Nobel Laureates, presented papers in the two-day conference. A
      monthly colloquium on Consciousness and Science, started in the Bay
      Area after the conference, has entered its seventh continuous year.
      The institute's in-house research spans a number of areas including
      foundations of quantum mechanics, artificial intelligence, origins of
      life, philosophy of science, and East/West comparative philosophy. As
      part of its program to interact with academics from leading
      universities and research establishments, the institute offers
      short / long-term research fellowships. Plans for expansion in the
      near future include setting up a biofeedback laboratory and the
      starting of an international journal for consciousness studies.

      http://www.bvinst.edu/gradstudies/History.htm

      The History

      The Bhaktivedanta Institute cherishes the privilege to have started
      the world's first graduate degree program (M.S./Ph.D.) in the rapidly
      emerging field of consciousness studies. This program has been
      launched at Bombay in collaboration with the Birla Institute of
      Technology and Science, one of India's top technical schools. While a
      growing number of major universities offer degree programs in related
      fields such as cognitive science, our program is, to the best of our
      knowledge, the first full-fledged program exclusively dedicated to
      consciousness studies.


      Prof. Charles Townes (co-inventor of LASER and 1964 Nobel Laureate in
      physics) formally inaugurated the M.S./Ph.D. program in
      consciousness studies on January 14, 1997 in Bombay. He also
      participated in a panel discussion on the theme Science in the 21st
      Century, which was held to mark the occasion.


      Our M.S. degree program runs for approximately one and a half years,
      consisting of three semesters (2 semesters of course work and one
      semester for dissertation). The M.S. degree is an essential pre-
      requisite to enter the Ph.D. program.

      The first group of students entered the M.S. program in January 1997.
      The Institute expects to have at least twenty students in the Masters
      program within the next few years. An international quality education
      at low-cost together with the opportunity to go to India promises to
      make this degree program particularly attractive to overseas students.

      Our graduate program is a natural culmination of the active
      participation of the Institute in the development of the new
      scientific field of consciousness studies in this decade. In a modest
      sense, the Institute can be said to have played a pioneering role in
      the development of this field.

      The Institute hosted the First International Conference on the Study
      of Consciousness within Science in 1990 in San Francisco. The
      conference featured sixteen invited speakers including three Nobel
      Laureates. About 490 scholars from different universities in North
      America and overseas attended as registered participants. The
      conference was considered a trend-setting major academic event of the
      time. Immediately after the conference, the Bhaktivedanta Institute
      started and has continued to run a colloquium on Consciousness and
      Science in the San Francisco Bay Area. The colloquium has been
      meeting regularly for eight years, with a list of speakers that is a
      veritable who's-who of leading researchers in consciousness studies.

      What is Consciousness Studies?

      A graduate program in any field can be only as good as the research
      carried at the host institute. The staff of the Bhaktivedanta
      Institute pursue vigorous state-of-the-art research programs in many
      areas of consciousness studies. The Institute has developed a unique
      perspective on what consciousness studies should entail, and the
      insights developed have already enriched the planning and conducting
      of the graduate program.

      The degrees are awarded by the collaborating parent institution, the
      Birla Institute of Technology and Science. BITS, as the Institute is
      known within India, is internationally recognized as one of India's
      premier technological universities and is also a leader in the area
      of distance education and off-campus programs in Asia. Originally
      started in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of
      Technology in the 1960s, the BITS academic program is similar to that
      of North American universities. Each course is planned, taught, and
      evaluated by the instructor-in-charge who ensures that the education
      imparted uses the teaching and evaluation format most appropriate for
      the course. The M.S. program in consciousness studies is designed to
      take full advantage of the latest theoretical and experimental
      results in this rapidly-emerging field. Courses are taught using both
      the latest textbooks and recent papers from professional journals in
      the field. The Institute has a small but growing library, currently
      holding about 3000 books, with subscriptions to many journals in the
      field of consciousness studies.

      http://www.bvinst.edu/conferences/

      Publications

      FORTHCOMING

      Gomatam, R. (2002) "Einstein's Critique of Quantum Theory - A
      Reassessment"
      to be read at the annual meeting of the History and Philosophy of
      Science Association
      June, 2002, Montreal, Canada.
      http://mapageweb.umontreal.ca/marquisj/hopos/frames/program_frame.html


      Gomatam, R. (2002) "What is Neils Bohr's Interpretation?"
      to be read at the conference organized by the Canadian Society for
      the History and Philosophy of Science
      May, 2002, Toronto, Canada.
      http://www.er.uqam.ca/nobel/r20430/schps_toronto_2002/gomatam.html

      Sinari, R. A. "Life-Worlds as the Experimental basis of Philosophy"
      (accepted for publication in Journal of Indian Council of
      Philosophical Research) (JICPR)
      Sinari, R. A. "Review of Ernesto Grassi's Heidegger and the Question
      of Renaissance Humanism: Four Studies"
      (to be published in JICPR)

      RECENT PAPERS
      (Note: This is only a partial list. For a full list of all
      publications, please see the concerned faculty's individual page*.
      For copies of paper, you may write to the concerned faculty directly)
      *Webmaster: The said page is undergoing redesign. Thus is not
      available online for the moment. Inconvenience regretted.

      Gomatam, R.(2002) "On the Connection between Physics, Ordinary
      Language and Consciousness -- Relearning the lessons from Quantum
      Theory"
      Paper presented at the conference on "Philosophical Consciousness and
      Scientific Knowledge: Conceptual Linkages and Civilizational
      Background" organized by the Center for Studies in Civilization,
      March 1-3, New Delhi

      L. Behera and K. K. Anand (1999) "On guaranteed tracking and
      regulating performance of nonlinear dynamical system using fuzzy
      neural network"
      IEEE proceedings Control Theory and Applications, vol. 146, no. 5,
      September 1999, pp. 484-491

      Sinari, R. A. (2001) "The Bipolar Weltanschuung of the Indian
      Scientist"
      a project report submitted to the Indian Council of Social Science
      Research, New Delhi

      Sinari, R. A. (2001) "Reflections on John Searle's Philosophy of
      Consciousnesses"
      a paper published in the July-Sept 2001 issue of Journal of Indian
      Council of Philosophical Research
      (JICPR, Vol. XVIII No.3) pp.91-106

      Sinari, R. A. (1999) "The Internality of Consciousness Experience"
      Discussion and Comments appeared in JICPR, Vol. XVII No.1,
      September-December 1999, pp 158-163

      Gomatam, R. (2001) "What is Bohr's Interpretation?"
      Paper presented at the annual meeting of the South African Philosophy
      of Science Association
      Durban, January 9-11

      Gomatam, R. (2000) "Quantum Dialog" by Mara Beller,
      Book Review appeared in
      Philosophy in Review, vol. XX, no. 6, December 2000, p. 390-1,
      University of Alberta

      Gomatam, R. (1999) "Quantum Theory and the Observation Problem"
      Journal of Consciousness Studies, 6 (11-12), p. 173-190
      appeared in the Special issue of the Journal of Consciousness Studies
      titled, "Reclaiming Cognition", Dec, 1999 http://www.imprint-
      academic.demon.co.uk/books/reclaiming_cognition.html

      Gomatam, R. (1999) "Quantum Theory and Information"
      a paper presented Quantum Approaches to Consciousness Conference
      July 28-August 1, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, Arizona
      http://www.consciousness.arizona.edu/quantum.html#events


      MONOGRAPHS IN PRINT

      Stapp, Henry P. (1994) "A Report on the Gaudiya Vaishnava Vedanta
      Form of Vedic Ontology"Bhaktivedanta Institute, Berkeley

      Gomatam, R.; et al. (1997) "Faith and Values in Science and Religion"
      A discussion with Nobel Laureate Physicist Charles H. Townes
      Bhaktivedanta Institute, Berkeley

      Gomatam, R. (1988) "Real and Artificial Intelligence-Can Machines
      think?" Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai

      BOOKS IN PRINT

      (1986) "Interviews with Nobel Laureates and Other Eminent Scholars"
      on the occasion of World congress for the Synthesis of Science and
      Religion at Bombay Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai

      DISSERTATIONS BY STUDENTS

      For a list of dissertations done at the Institute by the graduate
      students, please follow the Graduate Studies link to the students
      page.

      Our Students

      RAJESH PARASURAMAN
      (Year: 2000) M.Tech, Biomedical Engineering. I.I.T, Mumbai, India
      M.B.B.S, Nagpur Medical College, India
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India
      Research Interests: Attention, Perception, Matter & Quantum Physics,
      Mind-Body Medicine, Indian philosophy.

      M.S. Dissertation Title: "Attention - A Review"
      Guide: P.V.Rayudu.

      Personal statement - I live in Mumbai and work as a day scholar in
      Bhaktivedanta Institute. After a few years of professional life, I
      got enrolled for a PhD in Biomedical Engineering, at I.I.T, but an
      interest in Consciousness brought me here. Consciousness Studies is
      the emerging new discipline. I am interested in all major
      consciousness related subjects like Neuroscience, Mind-body medicine
      and Quantum Physics. Consciousness Studies has expanded the horizons
      of science and in the process has 'redefined' science and I consider
      myself fortunate to be a part of this major scientific revolution.
      The Bhaktivedanta Institute provided me with a unique opportunity to
      study diverse subjects like Artificial Intelligence, Neuroscience,
      Physics, Western and Indian Philosophy, Mind-Body Medicine,
      Psychology, all under one roof.

      My thesis area is a defined aspect of Consciousness, namely,
      Attention - and its analysis from the perspective of Psychology,
      Neuroscience, Biomedical Engineering and Quantum Physics. The
      Institute library has a very good collection of books and the best
      experience here has been the intellectually stimulating formal and
      informal discussions with people from varied areas of research
      interest.



      VINOD KUMAR.U
      (Year: 2000) M.A - Psychology. Calicut University, India
      M.Phil, Psychology. Calicut University, India
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India

      Research Interests: Vision, Illusions, Psychoanalysis, Clinical
      Psychology, Neuro-scientific aspects of Consciousness (Neural
      Correlates).

      M.S. Dissertation title: "Visual Illusions - The Significance of
      Context".
      Guide: Dr. R.V.Gomatam

      Personal statement - My home is in Kerala, South India. (Kerala is a
      beautiful state - visit www.kerala.com) The Consciousness Studies
      program has much to offer for all fields and that involves my subject
      of interest too, i.e. Psychology. My primary area of interest in
      consciousness is its psychological and neuroscientific aspects and
      its analysis from a cultural and historical perspective. That way, we
      might get an interesting picture on how the 'concept of
      consciousness' evolved and how it relates to the present methodology
      of research. My M.S thesis is on 'Visual Illusions, with special
      emphasis on the Role of Context in Illusions' and its importance in
      the study of consciousness. The Institute provides the perfect
      foundation for a person of my kind of interest.



      SABERI ROY
      (Year: 2000)
      M.Sc. Psychology, University of Calcutta, India.
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India
      Research Interests: Philosophy of mind, philosophy of science (matter
      and causation) consciousness and quantum mechanics, psychoanalysis,
      Eastern philosophy.

      M.S. Dissertation title: "Causality in Consciousness Studies"
      Guide: Dr.Ravi.Gomatam

      Personal statement - I have spent a major part of my life in
      Calcutta, West Bengal. Bengal is known for its 'cultural affluence
      and artistic excellence'. You can visit West Bengal's official
      website (www.westbengal.com) I have been involved in social work for
      the uplift of the poor for the last ten years and have also helped in
      organizing peace conferences. I was enrolled for an M.Phil program in
      Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi before coming here. The
      source of inspiration for joining this program has been the
      conference organized by the Bhaktivedanta Institute in Calcutta, on
      The Synthesis of Science and Religion where I came to know about the
      M.S/Ph.D program in Consciousness Studies. The program immediately
      attracted my attention because its basic issue of inquiry is one of
      the most fascinating aspects of existence, i.e. Consciousness and
      also the basic approach of inquiry is interdisciplinary and not
      restricted to any particular field of study.

      My research interests include the philosophy of mind, philosophy of
      science and the relation between the notion of matter and the problem
      of consciousness, considering the frameworks provided by physics,
      philosophy and psychology. My M.S dissertation is on the 'Problem of
      Cause within Consciousness Studies' and where causality stands in the
      natural sciences. My other interests include creative writing, art,
      existentialism and psychoanalysis. The institute's growing library is
      my favorite haunt and has an excellent collection of books related to
      all fields of consciousness studies. The Institute's unique effort in
      bringing the 'holy grail of knowledge', the phenomenon of
      Consciousness, that has perplexed humanity for the past thousands of
      years, within the realm of science, is worthy of great appreciation
      and will definitely meet with success.




      BALARAJU BATTU
      (year: 2000) M. Sc - Physics, Osmania University, Hyderabad, India
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India

      Research Interests: Quantum Mechanics (EPR Paradox and Bell's
      theorem), Statistical Mechanics, Consciousness & Physics.

      M.S. Dissertation title: "The EPR Paradox".
      Guide: Dr.P.K.Joshi.

      Personal statement - Before coming here, I was in Hyderabad, Andhra
      Pradesh (visit-www.fullhyderabad.com and www.hyderabad.com). I am a
      lover of theoretical physics, poetry, and art films. I have a Master
      of Science (M.Sc) degree in Physics from Osmania University,
      Hyderabad. I was enrolled for the M.Sc.Tech program in 'Computational
      Techniques for Physicists' in the University of Hyderabad, when I
      learnt about the Consciousness Studies program conducted by
      Bhaktivedanta Institute in collaboration with BITS, Pilani. I joined
      the program not only because of its impressive curriculum and course
      contents, but also because of its emphasis on the 'foundational
      problems' of modern science. As a student of physics, I am interested
      in the notions of 'matter' and 'space-time', theories which form the
      basic issues of inquiry in quantum mechanics and relativity. It is my
      opinion that though consciousness is a 'philosophical' problem, only
      by appealing to the foundational issues of theoretical physics, we
      might be able to solve it. My research interest is the famous 'EPR
      Paradox', the problem of non-locality and how this relates to
      consciousness studies. The Bhaktivedanta institute has given me the
      opportunity to do this unique research on two very important aspects
      of scientific inquiry: EPR paradox and Consciousness. With its
      completely 'different' research approach, the institute is bound to
      emerge as one of the premier institutes within the frontiers of
      science, in the near future.



      ANANT BHASKAR GARG
      (Year: 2000) B.E Computer Science, Motilal Nehru Regional
      Engineering College, University of Allahabad
      Advanced Diploma in Software Technology - Center for Electronics
      Design and Technology of India, Mohali
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India
      Research Interests: Human-Computer Interaction, Learning and Human
      Behavior, Bioinformatics, Cognitive systems, Indian Philosophy.

      M.S. Dissertation title: "A Critical Examination of the Concept of
      Information"
      Guide: P.V.Rayudu.

      Personal Statement - I have spent the main part of my academic life
      in Allahabad. I have 'sweated it out' in different companies, in the
      departments of administration, software designing and development. I
      was searching for some cognitive science programs and luck had me
      stumble on the BI (Bhaktivedanta Institute) website. I stuck on,
      joined the course mainly because of its focus on the 'human cognition-
      human behavior' approach. The interdisciplinary nature of the program
      also fascinated me as it was the first of its kind! The Bhaktivedanta
      Institute, as you know, is the first institute to organize a
      conference on the Scientific Study of Consciousness in 1990, which I
      think is a major step forward in the intellectual history of the last
      decade. As my interest lies in Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive
      Sciences, my dissertation here deals with the review and analysis of
      the concept of information. The notion of information is not only
      central and primary to consciousness studies; it also encompasses an
      entire gamut of conceptual issues and involves a critical examination
      of some major areas of study including the human-information
      capabilities, communication of information, physics of information,
      data communication & storage and also bioinformatics. This approach
      to study and research, which the Bhaktivedanta Institute offers,
      would certainly be a major leap for my future career.




      Dr. Chakravarthi Ramakrishna
      (Year: 1999) M.B.B.S., Kasthurba Medical College, Manipal Academy of
      Higher Education, Karnataka
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India

      M.S. Dissertation Title: "On the Timing of Conscious Experience- A
      Critical Review of Libet's Work"
      Guide: Dr. S. Nagarkatti

      Personal statement - To begin with, it must be said that
      Bhaktivedanta Institute is a unique institute. I first noticed the
      poster advertising this course while I was studying medicine in
      Manipal. I was immediately attracted towards it as it offered all the
      subjects I really liked - physics (to which I had no access in
      medicine), neuroscience, evolution, artificial intelligence,
      philosophy and so forth. I joined the course in spite of advice
      against it (since I would be leaving a very noble and lucrative
      profession once I take up research).

      Once here, the scope and breadth of this multidisciplinary field
      fascinated me. Consciousness has often touted as the final frontier
      in human understanding. Almost anything in the universe is
      potentially explainable within the scientific framework, whereas the
      questions about how we feel, sense, perceive, and other
      such 'subjective' qualities do not have even the beginnings of an
      answer. It is deeply related to the concept we have about ourselves.
      The relevance of consciousness studies in this fact and also the
      immense benefits that can accrue by unraveling and understanding the
      workings of the human mind. For example, advances in artificial
      intelligence and the cognitive sciences can result in technology that
      might revolutionize the way we live; or a change in the way we
      understand the concepts of matter, causality, time, etc., can, once
      again, change, in Copernican proportions, the way we look at the
      world.




      Matthew R. Ellis
      (Year: 1999)
      B.A. in Philosophy, California State University, Sacramento, CA, USA
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India

      M.S. Dissertation Title: "The Act of Conceptualization - An
      Exploration of Concepts and Cognition"
      Guide: Dr. R.A. Sinari

      Dr. Meenakshi Parab
      (Year: 1999) B.H.M.S., University of Poona, Maharashtra
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India

      M.S. Dissertation Title: "Dream Phenomenology and Physical Health
      Status: A Case study"
      Guide: Dr. S. Nagarkatti



      SHAJI THOMAS
      (Year: 1999)
      M.Sc. (Physics), University of Calicut, Kerala
      M.S. Consciousness Studies, Bhaktivedanta Institute, Mumbai & BITS,
      Pilani, India
      Project Report: "Language Functions of Brain and Aphasia" (1997)
      Guide: Dr. James Newman

      M.S. Dissertation Title: "The Role of Ergodicity in Foundations of
      Statistical Mechanics - A Critical Review"
      Guide: Dr. L. Behera, L. and Dr. P. K. Joshi

      Research interests: Foundations of statistical mechanics, heat and
      thermodynamics, black body radiation, foundations of quantum
      mechanics and philosophy of science

      Personal statement - I hail from a farmer's family at Kerala and
      worked as a Post Graduate Teacher in Govt. of Sikkim. In 1997, I came
      to know about the MS program at the 2nd World Congress in Calcutta,
      organized by the Bhaktivedanta Institute. The conference proceedings
      were an eye opener for me in the matters related with cutting edge
      scientific research. I was fascinated to know that an
      interdisciplinary field, 'consciousness studies', is very much into
      the mainstream research. Out of inner conviction I entered into this
      entirely new arena. During my stay at the Institute, I was exposed to
      the Institute's in-house research that was nurtured many years.
      Central to this research is the 'relational viewpoint' that is being
      developed by the director of the Institute. This approach would be a
      broader view of the notion of matter to be conceived somewhat
      different from the atomic and molecular worldview. I am proud to be a
      part of this team who always uphold the vision to contribute
      something substantial for the next generation.

      It is also quite remarkable to acknowledge that the assistantship
      offered by the Institute made me enter into the hardcore
      administration of the Institute. The unique library collection,
      system setup and excellent hostel facilities helped me to take up
      various projects of the Institute without worrying about my basic
      necessities. The assistantship helped me to learn many organizational
      and academic skills to be adopted by any organization. After going
      through this graduate program, the student not only is eligible for
      an internationally valid university degree, but is also well equipped
      to face challenges in his/her life. A positive approach to this
      program is a lifetime investment for the professional as well as
      one's personal life.
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