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Spiritual Science

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Spiritual Science

Postby Indigo Child » 31 May 2010, 22:21

In science one subject that often gets neglected, underrepresented or even dismissed is the Eastern notion of “spiritual sciences” Although despite the lack of acknowledgement by the Western academic world of Eastern spiritual sciences, Eastern spiritual sciences which have flourished in the East for several millennia, continue to be just as influential in the East today and have the support of many respected and intelligent academics such as Ken Wilber, Fritjof Capra. To continue to dismiss them, not only questions the intelligence of these great contemporary philosophers, but questions the intelligence of the Eastern mind and its legacy of research in “spiritual sciences”

Eastern spiritual science is not just an alternative science that can co-exist with Western material science because the very epistemological philosophy that underpins Eastern science is mutually opposed to Western epistemology. Eastern epistemology opposes Western science on three major counts:

1. The demarcation between mind and matter is false because both mind and matter are continuous, in constant interaction, and both are objects of consciousness.

2. It is impossible to know anything through any kind of rational, analytical and intellectual process because this only gives knowledge conditioned by ones assumptions of that thing.

3. It is impossible to study anything in isolation because everything is fundamentally interconnected

According to Eastern epistemology the very first starting point of an inquiry begins with ones consciousness, because it is impossible for there to be any knowledge of the world without consciousness. The second point that follows from this is that consciousness and the objects of consciousness are always ontologically distinct, because one is always conscious of the object(including physical and mental states) The third point is that consciousness and objects of consciousness have contradictory properties; consciousness is immaterial, intentional, free and experiencing and its objects are material, contingent, determined and inert.

The recognition that consciousness and its objects are ontologically distinct forms the very core principle of Eastern spiritual science. As they are distinct, it follows that consciousness cannot be conditioned by its objects, because it has the power to discriminate its objects. Therefore consciousness is necessarily objectless and pure. However, the very fact that it appears that consciousness is embodied within the world suggests that consciousness has become misidentified and entangled with its objects, thus its ordinary perception is conditioned. Yet, because this is only apparent and not real, it is possible to reverse the identification by becoming aware of oneself as pure consciousness through a pure witnessing intention, thereby gradually removing the conditioning, revealing more subtle structure in perception.

The Eastern spiritual science exploit this objectless principle of consciousness in order to objectively study perception and produce replicable and falsifiable results. Indeed, decades of scientific research into meditation and Yoga does show that the phenomenological and physical data collected is remarkably consistent and various stages of meditation can be objectively mapped, and these maps are indeed consistent with Eastern maps.

In conclusion it can be clearly seen that Eastern spiritual science are based on a rational epistemology and do indeed produce replicable and falsifiable results. Therefore there is such thing as spiritual science.
Indigo Child
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Joined: 22 May 2009, 08:01

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