The Big Bang and The Sages

Forums Forums Vedic Cosmology The Big Bang and The Sages

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #13836
    Sugandha Sharma
    Participant

    Hare Krishna Rsiraja Prabhuji

    Prabhuji, as far as I have understood from your writings, the fundamental notions of matter and reality in the Vedic scriptures are radically different from those of Modern science, and therefore the so called agreements between the Vedic descriptions and Modern scientific descriptions about cosmology are false. Hence, it is wrong to say that Modern science is discovering what was already known to Vedic sages.

    But I came across a book ‘The Big Bang and The Sages : Modern Science Catches Up With The Ancient Purāṇas‘ written by  Madhavendra Puri Das & Sidharth Chhabra. In that book, they try to show that Vedic scriptures stated the age of the solar system and the universe within 0.1% of the modern scientific values. Some of the data points that they present in their book are as follows:

    • The age of the universe: Modern science – 13.801 billion years / Vedic scriptures – 13.819 billion years
    • The age of the sun: Modern science – 4.567 billion years / Vedic scriptures – 4.563 billion years
    • The permian mass extinction: Modern science – 251.9 million years ago / Vedic scriptures – 251.152 million years ago

    They also show that the reason they are the first ones to recognize this similarity is due to their study of the commentary of Shridhar Swami on the Vishnu Purana. In the commentary to one of the verses, Shridhar Swami states that 2 days on the Earth planet of our experience = 1 day on the higher dimensional Bhumandala. Therefore, according to the authors of the book, the value for the duration of yugas on our Earth changes by a factor of 2. Kali-Yuga becomes 8,64,000 years long instead of 4,32,000 years. In this way, they have calculated and given the above data points. They also say that even if the factor of 2 is ignored, still all the data points are always approximately half of the Modern scientific value and hence this consistency can not be considered a mere coincidence.

    Therefore Prabhuji, can you please clarify and elaborate on this?

    #13837
    Ashish Dalela
    Keymaster

    I don’t know about this book, but I don’t buy into changing the durations of yugas. There is a very precise measurement system by which Kali-yuga is 432,000 solar years, and after that Dvapara is twice that, Treta is thrice that, and Satya is four times that. When we add, then the Chatur-Yugi is 10 times that. Based on that there are 1000 Chaturyugi that define a day of Brahma. And then Brahma lives for 100 years. So, if you double the base figure, then everything after that will double!

    This precise measurement process begins by measuring the smallest duration of atomic time. So, if you change anything in this ladder of times, then even atomic time measurement will change. Therefore, there is no room for such changes. They are perfect and precise as they are.

    The current age of the universe is about 151 trillion years, not 13 billion years. So, if someone is saying that the age is 13 billion years, that itself is trying to prove what it is not.

    One has to ask: How is the age of the universe determined currently? And the answer is CMB (Cosmic Microwave Background) radiation. This was initially supposed to be the indicator of the universe’s expansion. But later on, it was found that the expansion is accelerating for which there is no answer in current cosmology. It is attributed to some hypothetical thing called dark energy. Then, there is yet another thing called dark matter due to which the acceleration must reduce because it is attractive in nature and should slow down the expansion. Again, there is no answer to this in current cosmology. Both dark energy and dark matter are hypotheticals, but they are supposed to be about 95% of the matter. That means everything could be off by a factor of 20. The situation in cosmology is so bad that at present some people are trying to revise Newton’s laws on gravity to see if they can change Einstein’s relativity, and then solve the problems of dark energy and dark matter. When these things happen, then the age of the universe will also be revised.

    Then there are serious issues in the Cosmic Distance Ladder (CDL) by which distances to galaxies are measured. People have tried many changes to fix these issues, but they are not resolved. The simple question always is: If something seems like a dim star, is it because it close and dim, or far and bright? You cannot actually go to that star and measure distance, so CDL is a huge problem. When you cannot measure distances, then you cannot measure the rate of expansion. When you cannot measure the rate of expansion, then you cannot talk about the age of the universe. If someone knows modern cosmology then they know how many problems are hidden within it.

    Then, there are serious problems related to the unification of quantum and relativity theories, which create additional problems. For example, if you see a bright light from a star, it is not necessary that the star is nearby. It can be that the star is selectively emitting brighter light to our planet alone because the light is not uniformly distributed everywhere in quantum mechanics. Once we take quantum effects into account, the level of certainty in modern cosmology becomes zero.

    The issue is that most people don’t understand the problems of relativity, quantum mechanics, CMB, CDL, dark energy, dark matter, etc. but they are too much in hurry to say that we knew in the past what they know today. Well, what will happen when scientists change what they claim to know in the future? Then we will keep adjusting our knowledge according to their changes? So, this is basically a flawed approach. And creating multiplication factors just worsens the overall problem.

    We have to understand modern science and its problems, and then we have to understand cosmology in Vedic philosophy separately. The Vedic ideas of space, time, matter, causality, etc. are quite different. For example, a cause doesn’t travel straight. It goes up to heavenly planets, is approved by demigods, and then comes down. This is why some people can sit on fire and not be burned by it. You think that light is traveling directly from fire to the body, but it is not. It is going up to heavenly planets and then coming down. In the heavenly planets, the light effect is approved or disapproved by demigods. If it is disapproved, then you can sit on fire and not be burned by it.

    There is order in nature because demigods are doing their duties regularly. But scientists made things impersonal where there is no demigod and things are happening according to laws. All these laws of modern science are false because there are exceptions to each of these laws.

    For example, when Lord Krishna danced with the gopis on the night of Sharad Purnima, then the Moon stopped moving just to watch the dance. Thereby, the Sharad Purnima night became very long. But it is not just that the Moon stopped rotating. It is also that time itself stopped for everyone else, as they kept sleeping. Time, however, did not stop for Krishna and gopis. Therefore, time can stop and slow down selectively. Likewise, when Vivaswan teaches Surya Siddhanta, the Sun stops his movement just to teach Maya Danava. Vivaswan says that I don’t have much time because I have to do my duties, so I will teach in summary. So, even Sun and Moon are not constantly rotating. They can stop if they want. But they are going on due to the sense of duty and responsibility. Just like trains run on time, flights take off on time, not because of a mathematical law but out of a sense of duty and responsibility. If we don’t understand this basic idea, then everything else is useless.

    The law of nature is called dharma. The dharma of fire is to be hot, and the dharma of water is to be cold. That means the fire can be hot, and it appears to be hot out of a sense of duty. But it can stop being hot in certain situations like when Prahalada was being burned by Holika, the fire stopped being hot specifically for Prahalada. Likewise, all planets are working because they can work, and out of a sense of duty. It is not based on laws. This requires a completely different understanding of space, time, causality, etc. If we don’t focus on grasping this science, and simply focus on matching two numbers, then we are doing great injustice to Vedic texts. It is better we don’t touch them, because by such things we are depersonalizing and impersonalizing nature in the process.

    The correct understanding is that the universe is a space in which the soul moves from one state to another. It is not the motion of objects, but the motion of the soul. Just like you feel fresh in the morning, hungry in the afternoon, tired in the evening, and sleepy in the night, in the same way, the demigods are moving from one state to another. That is the movement of the soul, which appears as the movement of the body. The soul can stop moving, and then the body will stop changing. The soul can move faster, and the body will change faster. Or the soul can move out of a sense of duty, and the body will move periodically. And this soul movement is occurring in a different kind of space; not the space we think or perceive by our eyes. That is why, when time passes, it is not merely clock movement. It is also ideological changes, rise and fall of civilizations, economic up and down, societies rising and falling, war and peace, and finally, changes in yugas. But people are just doing body movement calculation by which they cannot explain anything other than body movement.

    All these issues arise because we are not studying books properly. In Bhagavad-Gita, the first thing Krishna says is: Never was there a time when I did not exist, nor you, nor all these kings, and never will there be a time when they will cease to be. This is the first statement. Then the second statement is: Just as the soul is moving from childhood to youth to old age in this body, similarly, the soul moves to another body at the time of death; a sober person is not bewildered by this change. So, the first statement is that the soul is eternal. And the second statement is that the soul is moving from one body to another. But people don’t read Bhagavad-Gita or at least don’t understand it. They think it is body movement rather than soul movement. And they finish the book, without understanding anything in it, because the first and second statement is not understood.

    That’s why I tell people to stop doing cosmology, go back to the beginning of Bhagavad-Gita, and read every word carefully again. Once we understand that the body is not moving, rather the soul is moving, then we will understand that the sun is not moving, rather the sun-god is moving. And that sun-god movement is not in the space we perceive it as. There is another kind of space, another kind of time, another kind of causality for soul movement. That is real cosmology to study. By that study, we will immediately comprehend transmigration of the soul, karma and reincarnation, going from one planet to another, and so on. Otherwise, you just measure the age of the universe, and nothing more. No soul, no karma, no transmigration, no interplanetary travel. Then what is the use?

    #13839
    Sugandha Sharma
    Participant

    Understood Prabhuji. But understanding that this approach is false, how do we explain their calculations? Why are their calculations matching so closely with the modern scientific values, and even if the factor of 2 is ignored then why are their calculations able to maintain this consistency of being off by a factor of 2 in comparison to modern scientific values?

    The authors also say that their calculations also include (apart from the factor of 2) this concept of a pratisamdhi which is a special time unit between two kalpas and is equal to 616.893 million years (with the factor of 2 applied), and they found this in their study of the Vayu Purana and Brahmanda Purana. Also, the verse that they refer for the commentary of Shridhar Swami where He mentions the factor of 2, is Vishnu Purana 1.3.7.

    Therefore Prabhuji, can you please tell the reason to why their calculations are agreeing with the current false modern scientific values?

    #13840
    Ashish Dalela
    Keymaster

    I cannot tell you what I don’t know. I haven’t studied their book, I and don’t have the time to.

    What I know is very simple: When Srila Prabhupada instructed his disciples to work on cosmology, he gave a very specific instruction: “My final decision is that the universe is just like an inverted tree”. This “final decision” came about after much deliberation and debates about how to understand cosmology, how the earth is round and flat, how a soul is bound to a planet, and hence cannot go whimiscally from one planet to another. The discussion of cosmology itself arose in the context of Moon landings, where Prabhupada stated that we cannot go to the moon, unless we have the right karma, and we cannot go to the moon in this body, using rockets, spaceships, etc. The dicussion also arose in the context that the planets are populated by demigods, but we cannot see them with our eyes. Thereby, cosmology was deeply tied in Prabhupada’s view to the following things:

    • Each planet affords a different kind of body and mind
    • Travel to other planets depends on karma and is based on reincarnation
    • Each planet binds us to a certain region, and we cannot exit it
    • The living entities on these planets are not visible
    • All these planets are organized from top to bottom in an inverted tree structure
    • Yogis travel between planets using mystical powers
    • The sun is the lowest planet, and moon is the next higher planet

    What happened subsequently is what generally happens when people don’t understand or don’t want to understand these things. Each of the above principles has been disregarded in the study of cosmology. Instead, people have become obsessed with numbers. Numbers about distances, numbers about time, etc. Why? Because that is all that they can understand. They want to do numerical calculations, and they think that this is what Prabhupada wanted to do. I’m not interested in these things. Hence I’m not interested in understanding why they might be right or wrong. You can have a successful surgery while the patient dies. I don’t want to perform such a surgery.

    The fundamental question one has to ask is this: Parikshit Maharaja is dying in 7 days, and Sukadeva Goswami is teaching him cosmology. Why? If you are about to die in 7 days, do you really care about the cosmological structure? Or, are you going to worry about where you are headed? The question of what cosmology is, is a much later question, than why should we even study cosmology. Then, cosmology is described after Sankhya philosophy, which means one has to know Sankhya before cosmology. If you don’t know that, you cannot even understand what they are talking about.

    Then again, you also seem to be disinterested in simple points: (a) the age of the universe is 151 trillion years, not 15 billion years, (b) all calculations of age of the universe in modern cosmology are fundamentally flawed due to the problems of dark energy and dark matter, quantum problems, issues in constructing a CDL, etc. So, why should I be interested in answering your question, when you are not interested in listening to the answers I’m giving? Does this make sense?

    There are numerous such coincidences in any subject. For example, many decades ago, one person found out a coincidence: The radiaii of the planetary orbits according to modern science match very closely with the radiaii of 7 islands on the Bhumandala. So, he concluded: Oh, this happy coincidence means that Bhumandala is actually the solar system, completely disregarding the fact that the 7 planets are all above the Bhumandala. Now, you can ask me: Please explain this happy coincidence. And my answer is: Why should I? Just because you get one happy conincidence, you will disregard all the other problems? What is that explanation going to achieve for you?

    There is indeed a science of calculations of distances and times. But is not linear number additions. It is based on conceptual additions in which removing something from a number doesn’t reduce the number but creates another number. Likewise, adding something to a number doesn’t add to the number, but simply merges another number into the previous number. Based on this alternative science of numbers, there are calculations too. But we need to understand so many things before that. It is long journey, and I’m trying my best, without any help so far. Meanwhile, people want to do numerical calculations without understanding what we mean by number, how one number expands from another number, merges into the previous number, etc. They use Euclidean geometry, linear time, sine and cosine calculations, all based on a quantiative system or arithmetic. And then sometimes you get a happy coincidence between unrelated things, and you say: Why don’t you explain that coincidence? So, my answer is: Please keep looking for such coincidences, and seeking joy in them. I have got better things to do with my time, which is what Prabhupada wanted, which is based on a deeper and broader science, and which takes time but is also everlasting.

    #13841
    Sugandha Sharma
    Participant

    Sorry Prabhuji for showing disinterest towards all the important and fundamental points that you made, I accept my mistake and will try to rectify it instead of seeking joy in happy coincidences. I will try to understand all the important points you mentioned in the above replies carefully again and again. However Prabhuji, as you said:

    The fundamental question one has to ask is this: Parikshit Maharaja is dying in 7 days, and Sukadeva Goswami is teaching him cosmology. Why? If you are about to die in 7 days, do you really care about the cosmological structure? Or, are you going to worry about where you are headed?

    If the request is appropriate, can you please elaborate on why should we study cosmology?

    #13842
    Ashish Dalela
    Keymaster

    Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 5.16.3 states:

    When the mind is fixed upon the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His external feature made of the material modes of nature — the gross universal form — it is brought to the platform of pure goodness. In that transcendental position, one can understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Vāsudeva, who in His subtler form is self-effulgent and beyond the modes of nature. O my lord, please describe vividly how that form, which covers the entire universe, is perceived.

    In Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 2.4.6 Purport, Prabhupada writes:

    Those who are in control of the external energy of the Lord, or in other words those who are in the material world, must first of all know how the external energy of the Lord is working under the direction of the Supreme Personality, and afterwards one may try to enter into the activities of His internal energy.

    In my last response, I wrote:

    So, in a limited sense, when we talk about “science” we are talking about creation. Then we talk about the creator. Then we talk about the controller. Then we talk about greatness. Then we talk about love.

    If we don’t follow this process, then we will misunderstand God as an ordinary person.

    This is the process of understanding God. Begin by understanding His creation, then understand the creator, then the controller, then the greatness, and finally love.

    #13843
    Sugandha Sharma
    Participant

    I see. Thank you so much for instructing and helping me on this subject matter Prabhuji.
    Hare Krishna!

    #13838
    Sugandha Sharma
    Participant

    Understood Prabhuji. But understanding that this approach is false, how do we explain their calculations? Why are their calculations matching so closely with the modern scientific values, and even if the factor of 2 is ignored then why are their calculations able to maintain this consistency of being off by a factor of 2 in comparison to modern scientific values?

    The authors also say that their calculations also include (apart from the factor of 2) this concept of a pratisamdhi which is a special time unit between two kalpas, and they found this in their study of the Vayu Purana and Brahmanda Purana.

    Therefore Prabhuji, can you please tell the reason to why their calculations are agreeing with the current false modern scientific values?

    Following are some links where Sidhartha Chhabra who is one of the authors, explains his findings:

    #14421
    Sunil Sharma
    Participant

    Hi Ashish

    Can you explain the problems in modern cosmology about determining the age of the universe that you discussed here in more detail? Also, kindly explain what you mean by ‘light is not uniformly distributed everywhere in quantum mechanics’?

    #14422
    Ashish Dalela
    Keymaster

    You can read the book Mystic Universe. Problems with modern cosmology are Chapter 4 in the book. The above link also gives chapter-wise summaries.

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.