‘Science and Spirituality in Vedic Tradition’ as the name of the volume, is an effort to present the Vedic tradition in a concise form in reference to spirituality and science. The aim of spirituality and science is to search the truth behind the creation. Generally, it is said that both are different journeys to discover and inquire into the truth, but in actuality these two ways are complimentary to each other. Vedic Tradition approves a holistic approach. Intense research and deep thought supported with critical views are required to know the concepts of ancient Indian thinkers.
This current edited volume consists of 26 papers written in English which were presented at the 19'h India Conference of WAVES organized with the collaboration of Delhi Sanskrit Academy at its campus on November 2015 on the theme 'Science and Spirituality in Vedic Traditions: Modern Context'. These papers are by some well-known scholars of Vedic and Sanskrit Studies such as, Prof .S.R. Bhatt, Mr. Rohit Chauhan, Prof. Shashi Tiwari, Prof. Radey Shyam Kaushal, Dr. Asha Rani Tripathi, Dr. Urmila Rustagi, Dr. Vedawati Vaidik, Dr. Shakuntala Bora, Dr. Pankaja Ghai Kaushik, Dr. Soma Basu, Dr. Bharati Sharma, Ms. Kavya Vaddadi, Dr. Kamla Arora, Mr. Subodh Kumar, Dr. Pradeep Rai, Prof. Om Vikas, Dr. Priyanka Mishra. Their contributions certainly amplify the value to this literary effort. Almost all aspects of Indian insights on the main theme are covered in this collection of edited papers.
This volume, dedicated for the felicitation of Prof. Bhudev Sharma, is the six publications of WAVES under the series entitled 'Ancient Indian Literary Heritage'. Prof. Bhu Dev Sharma, Former President, WAVES, USA has very kindly written the preface of this book.
Prof. Shashi Tiwari, Recipient of 'Certificate of Honour', 2015 from the President of India, is a well-known Vedic and Sanskrit scholar. She is engaged in Sanskrit studies and Vedic research for the last forty five years. Dr. Tiwari has been honoured with more than twenty two academic awards from various academic institutions of India including the prestigious 'Sanskrit Sahitya Seva Sammana', 2006 and 'Sanskrit Sikshak Puraskar'1995 from Delhi Sanskrit Academy, Delhi; ‘Vishist Purskar' 2007 and `Maharshi Vyas Samman' 2014 from Uttar Pradesh Sanskrit Sansthan, Lucknow; `Vidyalankar' title, 2007 from Porvanchal Sanskrit Prachar Parishad, Kolkata; `Sanskrit-Shri Award' 2015 from Akhil Bhartiya Sanskrit Sahitya Sammelan, New Delhi; and `Vidya Sagar Upadhi' 2015 from Mandakini Vidvat Parishad, New Delhi for her contribution to Vedic and Sanskrit Studies.
Prof. Tiwari has thirty published books to her credit on Vedic and Sanskrit subjects. Rigvediya Aprisukta, Suryadevta, Rigvedic Studies, Vedic Studies, Glimpses .of Vedic and Ancient Indian Civilization, Sanskrit-Lokokti-Kosha, Sanskrit Sahitya Ka Itihas, Sanskrit-Sahitya me Rashtravada our Bharatiya Rajashastra, Gita-Vimarsha, Harappan Civilization and Vedic Culture, Creation and Existence in Indian Tradition, Vedavyakhyapaddhatayah, Sanskrit-sahitya-anushilanam are some of her recognized publications.
She has participated in several International and National Conferences in India and abroad, including in USA, Italy, Canada, Korea, and Nepal. She has organized many national symposiums, seminars, panel discussions and twenty one national conferences, on themes related to Vedas and ancient literary heritage as the General Secretary and President of the WAVES.
Dr. Shashi Tiwari, retired from the Department of Sanskrit, Maitreyi College, University of Delhi, has been teaching in the Hindu University of America, Orlando, USA as adjunct faculty.
Pursuit of Spirituality is the way for higher living. Great thinkers, leaders, philosophers, those excelling in different academic fields, world wide, including scientists have greatly spoken about and enriched this field. Vedas hold the perennial resource and position of being the first and basic treatise on the subject. Substantial and varied literature on spirituality has followed from Vedas. Vedic traditions are also known for deep spiritual concepts and comprehensive view of existence, life and beyond, essential part of spirituality. There is a golden saying, "Every Text is in a Context" Therefore, the current age being that of great scientific and advancing, we have to properly understood and explain them in spiritual setting in `Modern Context.'
In 2015, 'WAVES-India' organized its 19th India Conference at 'Delhi Sanskrit Academy', New Delhi. Major theme of the three-day conference was `Science and Spirituality in Vedic Traditions: Modern Context.' To deliberate upon this theme in modern context is very appropriate and quite futuristic as well. The highlight of the conference has been a galaxy of eminent scholars, profound speakers as well as participants who gathered from different places - to mention a few places they came from Assam, Chennai, Bangalore, Lucknow, Kolkata, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Mumbai, Indore, Delhi, Nainital, Haridwar, Patna, Shimla, Agra, Allahabad etc.
The presentations, besides being on various topics, have served the purpose of Sanskritists analyzing Science in Vedic terms, as also the scientists to have deeper exposure through Sanskrit. These presentations made in the conference were greatly appreciated by participants. These are of interest to audience far beyond the participants. Publication of the proceedings, containing, ideas on several areas of interest, will serve good academic purpose of being a good reference material also.
The Proceedings have sections of papers in English, in Hindi, as also in Sanskrit. I am sure, papers in these sections will be found very illuminating by scholars and general readers.
In the end, I will like to mention that Science (Vijnana) has been considered essential part of the true wisdom (jnana) in the first sloka of the ninth Chapter of Bhagavadgita, wherein Lord Krishna tells Arjun:
Meaning: To you, who does nor cavil, I shall declare the profound secret of wisdom (jnanan) combined with science (Vijnana-sahitam) , by knowing which you will be released of all the miseries of material existence. I hope Science advancing with spirituality as propounded in Vedas, exposed in the articles contained herein, will help in understanding and solving the riddles of life.
The 19th India Conference of WAVES was organized with the collaboration of Delhi Sanskrit Academy at its campus on November 27- 29, 2015 on the theme 'Science and Spirituality in Vedic Traditions: Modern Context'. A large number of dignitaries, renowned-scholars and research students participated and presented their papers covering different aspects of the main subject.
From time immemorial, it is well accepted by all that Vedas are the repositories of all knowledge- Vedo akhilo dharmamulam'. Vedic seers were great visionaries as they could visualize the truth of life and universe. They were basically scientists powered by the heights of spirituality in them. They, therefore, showed the paths for the management and protection of the world. What they envisaged they revealed through the mantras. That is why Vedic seers are called Saksatkrtadharmayah, observers of Dharma, the eternal truth. Indian traditions believe that Vedic mantras communicate to us real knowledge and express authentic principles of cosmic order. The Vedic traditions set by Vedas are eternal. Spirituality is the essence of these value-based traditions which are formulated for the organization of worldly activities. We should try to understand them along with the concepts of Indian philosophy so that new generations can be proud of our ancestors and be benefitted from their wisdom.
The aim of spirituality and science is to search the truth behind the Creation. Generally, it is said that both are different journeys to discover and inquire into the truth, but in actuality these two ways are complimentary to each other. Dr. Rohit Chauhan has rightly explained in his paper, 'the scientists go by a bottoms-up approach and the spiritualists by top-down happenings. Science is objective, relating almost entirely with physical levels of human consciousness, while the spiritualists are in the higher levels of consciousness. Spirituality is subjective, relating with non-physical aspects of life where science may now be consciously knocking at the doors for fresh ideas. It can be demonstrated that spirituality does influence physical actions'.
Science and Spirituality should not be understood as opposites. The Munqakopanisad clearly states, 'There are two kinds of knowledge to be acquired - one is superior knowledge (Para, and the other lower knowledge (Apara Vidya).'-
Dve vidye veditavye-paracaivapara ca.- Mund. Up. 1.4 The above simply means that after attainment of worldly knowledge, it is essential to experience the superior level of knowledge i.e. vidya, which alone can lead to realization of the Self. So a combination of scientific and spiritual knowledge is the best means for the achievement of goals in the life according to Vedic insight.
WAVES conference efforts were focused on bridging the perception gap between science and spirituality on the basis of Vedic wisdom. Papers were presented in three languages on different aspects of the theme. As a practice in WAVES, we publish selected papers after thorough editing and formatting. The proceedings of nineteenth India are getting published in two volumes on the basis of language of the papers. This current volume consists of 26 papers written in English. Next volume includes selected papers written in Hindi and Sanskrit. On the occasion of publication of this volume, which is sixth of the series entitled 'Ancient Indian literary heritage' of WAVES Publication, I wish to express my sense of gratitude to various participants, especially Prof. Ramkaran Sharma, Prof. S.R. Bhatt, Prof. BhuDev Sharma, Prof. Lallan Prasad, Prof. Ganesh Dutt Sharma, Dr. Jeetram Bhatt, Prof. Ram Gopal, Dr. Rohit Chauhan, Dr. Radhey Shyam Kaushal, Dr. Kamla Arora, Dr. Sati Sankar, Prof. R.S. Dubey, Dr. Vedawati Vaidik, Mr. Prashant Bhardwaj, Prof. Om Vikas, and Prof. Ramesh Bhardwaj for supporting our efforts of promoting the great Vedic knowledge in academic and day to day life. The overall opinion of the scholars was that Vedic seers have always emphasized on the spiritual dimension of our life but they never ignored aspiration for materialistic happiness and social peace. Vedic seer had comprehensive knowledge of this cosmos and beyond that, when he proclaimed, Isvasyamidamsarvam' in the Isopanisad.
Finally, I wish to mention that the editing and formatting of this book took an extra time but due to full suppot of Dr. Radhe Shyam Shukla, Proprietor, Pratibha Prakasha, we are able to bring these publications on time. My special thanks are to our Respected Prof. BhuDev Sharma for contributing an appropriate preface to this volume. We are dedicating current volume for the felicitation of Prof. BhuDev Sharma who is the real torchbearer of the Vedic wisdom and Indian values.
May Vedic Gods bestow their grace on our sincere endeavour for the promotion of Vedic traditions. In the words of Yajurveda (32.15): `Varuna grant me wisdom! Grant it Agni and Prajapati! Wisdom may Indra, Vayu grant. May the creator grant it to me.'
Item Code: NAO996 Author: Shashi Tiwari Cover: HARDCOVER Edition: 2018 Publisher: Pratibha Prakashan ISBN: 9788177024210 Language: English Size: 9.50 X 7.50 inch Pages: 239 (Throughout B & W Illustration) Other Details: Weight of the Book: 0.7 Kg
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