Ruminations on Vedic Philosophy

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Philosophy Religion

The Conception of God in Vaiṣṇavism

Vaiṣṇavism presents a conception of God that doesn’t fit into well-known categories such as monotheism, polytheism, monism, pantheism, panentheism, henotheism, deism, and others. This is because Vaiṣṇavism accepts all their assertions and rejects all their negations. For example, the monotheistic claim that “God is one” doesn’t negate the polytheistic claim—i.e., “God is many”. Likewise, the …

History Physics

Non-Dualism, Inseparability, and Entanglement

In the previous post, I made a pithy remark in passing—Progressive history doesn’t have revolutions and paradigm changes. I will use this post to explain how this is a consequence of the modern scientific assumptions about the separation of locations, times, and things. Separation allows us to count things, and then describe them using mathematical …

Philosophy

How to Debate an Impersonalist?

In a recent conversation, many good questions about the problems of Advaita Impersonalism arose, which we could not cover during the conversation itself. This post tries to respond to these questions. For those who might be unaware, Advaita Impersonalism can be summarized into four claims: (a) Brahman is real or true, (b) the material world …

Neuroscience

The Principle of Underdetermination

I’m literally exhausted by the number of people who claim that the mind is the brain, based on the neuroscientific experiments, in which injecting electrical signals into the brain results in novel experiences. These claims arise due to the stark mind-body duality created by Descartes that was readily embraced by Christianity as the soul-matter duality. …

Philosophy

Objections Against My Vedānta Sūtra Commentary

There are occasional rumblings against my Vedānta Sūtra commentary entitled Conceiving the Inconceivable: A Scientific Commentary on Vedānta Sūtras. I understand that many people come to religion with a sense of finality: Worldly knowledge changes, but spiritual knowledge is eternal. In their view, a new commentary breaks that finality. They may view the commentary as …

Philosophy

The Self as the Basis for Science

For several years now, I have been describing a semantic conception of reality in which all reality is like a book, comprising symbols of meaning. The book expands out of an idea, and the individuality of the idea divides into the individuality of chapters, paragraphs, sentences, words, and phonemes. Once this expansion has occurred, we …