Dear Sriman Vrndavan,
Please accept my humble obeisances.
I am still struggling to find the time to reply to your last email regarding various means of acquiring knowledge.
From our talks in Odessa I got the impression that you have a good grasp of these subjects yourself. I think you have the capacity to provide satisfactory answers to most of the questions that arise on these topics.
In the final analysis, perfect knowledge can only be gained from a perfect man of knowledge by a perfect student in pursuit of perfect answers. That is the only viable process and it is one that ultimately entirely excludes the material senses, including the mind and intellect, as means by which to acquire perfect knowledge, of anything; be it material or spiritual.
All these subjects can be explained, but only to a minimal degree. After that, spiritual realization will be our only help. It is for this reason that there are very few persons in this world who have perfect knowledge. It is also true that hardly anyone is really interested in the subject. Almost everyone wants to avoid the hard work, surrender and rigorous discipline the knowledge acquiring process requires.
To avoid the process, small men with puny brains, but great imaginations, spend their time in devious endeavors intended to cheat others by making a show of scientific thinking in order to gain profit, adoration and distinction. They have no interest in real knowledge, science or truth and are no better than animals in human dress. Similarly small minded men accept these cheaters as an excuse to indulge in the same unscrupulous practices themselves.
Ascending knowledge is no knowledge at all. It is completely useless to the wellbeing of any jiva.
Why then are ascending knowledge, inductive reasoning, speculation, impersonalism, etc. so prominent in the world? The answer will not be found in any scientific journal. The answer, however, is a simple one, and can be found in Srimad Bhagavad-gita:
na māṁ duṣkṛtino mūḍhāḥ
āsuraṁ bhāvam āśritāḥ
Those miscreants who are grossly foolish, who are lowest among mankind, whose knowledge is stolen by illusion, and who partake of the atheistic nature of demons do not surrender unto Me.
Disguising one’s intent is a very good strategy for winning a war. When the USA fought the first Gulf War to oust Sadam Hussein’s army from Kuwait they began the campaign by creating a great illusion. First they eliminated Iraq’s eyes and ears, its electronic communications network. It also eliminated Iraq’s air force so they could not survey the battlefield. Then, when the Iraq army was unable to get a clear picture of what was happening, the US amassed more than half a million troops, along with a heavy contingent of tanks, other heavy and light armored vehicles and weapons on Iraq’s south-western border. They then introduced what appeared to be an invasion force of marines on Kuwait’s Persian Gulf coast, to its east. They didn’t try to hide the marines because they wanted the Iraqi’s to think the main thrust of the invasion would come from that quarter. Of course it didn’t, with disastrous results for the Iraqi army.
The duskrtinas (miscreants), the mudhas (foolish), the naradhamas (lowest of mankind), the asuras (demons) and all the others whose knowledge has been stolen by illusion, do not, and do not want to, surrender to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Krishna. They also do not want to confront Him, or His representatives (devas), directly, which would expose them for who they are. So, all these miscreants create diversions, illusions and engage in all manner of trickery to avoid a confrontation that would expose them as the pathetic creatures they are. Their most clever illusion is the illusion of science, coupled with its illusory benefits. This illusion allows them to avoid the reality that every jiva and every aspect of creation is subject to the control of, and serves at the pleasure of, Sri Krishna.
Would you like to know what “hard science” is? I have just described it. It is the science that tells us directly of the differences between the asuras and the devas, what the material world is and what the spiritual world is. It “distinguishes reality from illusion, for the welfare of all.” What does so-called science do? The opposite. It tries to establish illusion as reality, to the detriment of all.
Descending knowledge is the only reliable means of acquiring knowledge. It is easy to prove this by logic and reason. And yet it is the means all scientists refuse to investigate, or even consider. They insist, instead, on pursuing a course of “scientific investigation” that is a useless waste of time, energy and money. Worse, it is a “soul killing” endeavor that insidiously minimizes, demeans and belittles the jiva and his God. The jiva and God are seen as impediments to so-called scientific investigation. As a result, “science” makes every effort to eliminate these impediments by any means available to it.
This brings us to the second prong of their attack, severing the lines of communication. They do this through a propaganda campaign that speaks condescendingly of believers as “old fashioned” and superstitious people whose voice should be stifled lest they drag society back to the dark ages; a place where science was unknown or looked upon with suspicion. Legislators are thereby intimidated into passing laws prohibiting dissenting opinions from being considered in educational institutions, text books and grant money for research. Governments then fully support research in the line of ascending studies, while attempting to cut off the food supply and starve out any contrary opinions or debate. All of this is done in the name of “societal good” which speaks with such a loud voice that the voice of reason, which points to signs of moral decay and societal evil, seems a mere whisper by comparison.
Did Sri Shukadeva, embark on a study of biology, physics or chemistry to gain knowledge of how the earth became populated with a variety of species, cosmology or the compositions that derive from differing combinations of earth, water, fire, air and ether?
Of course, he did not. And yet he was heralded by the greatest thinkers, research scholars, scientists, philosophers, religionists and spiritual seers of his time, the present and the future, as one of the most fit persons to instruct a very learned and highly competent king, Maharaja Pariksit, on all matters relevant to his inquiries.
As Srila Sridhara Maharaja has pointed out: what is the most difficult problem facing the entire creation? It is death. If we can solve that problem, is it not enough for us? Ask one standing at death’s door for a truthful answer.
Maharaja Parikst was in that position when he began his most intense search for knowledge. He then followed the process I described in my introductory words; he sought out a perfect person, became his perfect student and acquired perfect knowledge. As a result he left this world in the most perfect way, the perfect state of sat (eternity), cit (knowledge) and ananda (ecstasy).
Can so-called science deliver sat, cit and ananda to the jivas? Is there any acquisition more urgently needed or wanted by jivas than these three?
So-called science cannot deliver these three vital necessities, but surreptitiously offers the hope of doing so; all the while claiming it does not. In this way it preys on the foolish, naive and innocent and, because it is systemic to the material world, it preys on the devotees of God, men of faith, as well.
Men of firm faith should do all within their power to remove the faith killing cancer known as “science” from the hearts of men and replace it with the faith of perfect men who have perfect faith in the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Some time ago I had a discussion with a devotee whose faith was being attacked by the cancer of so-called science. I posted portions of the discussion on our website. One of them was titled “Evolution: Religion Without Philosophy.” The post was of an email which I have attached below. You may find it of interest.
I pray this finds you in your usual good health and spirits.
Swami B.K. Giri