[lit-ideas] vedic science

  • From: JulieReneB@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 27 May 2004 14:59:35 EDT

<<Vedic Science: 
Of AUM, Brahman, String theory and Fractal Universe!
- By, Hemant Krishna V.

AUM and String theory... Brahman and the Fractal universe... The `Big 
Bang', the `Big Crunch' and the "World Egg' of Manu Smrti. At the 
first glimpse, they indeed appear absurdly apart and dangerously 
diverse. However, a second and a closer look tells that there is a 
deep underlying connection between the two. What follows is the 
debate on whether ancient Indian mythology is `good science' or `bad 
science'. If it is not a bad science then the question comes up: Why 
has it been so brutally ignored, since long? Perhaps, due to the 
explicit poetry involved, the magniloquent, yet vivid worldly 
descriptions of the most imperceptible entities of this Universe make 
Indian mythology look more and more unscientific. It is when one 
explores to the core, the truth embedded in it, that he realizes that 
science is not just a dry and uninteresting study of anything and 
everything, but the one which has been robbed of its inherited beauty 
and splendour. 

If you dust off an ancient Upanishad book, that looks much like a 
relic and riffle through its pages, you might come across words which 
hint that, "Everything emerged from the same source...called a pure 
Being...From the pure Being evolved pure Space...from the vibrations of 
the Space, Air was produced...Air friction then led to the emergence of 
Fire...Fire gave rise to Water (like sweat produced by heat)". Don't 
laugh off these as unsubstantiated hypotheses. Think of the String 
theory, which suggests the vibration of Space gave way to elements. 
Observe that the elements that are quoted above, match the four 
states of matter, which we know as plasma, gas, liquid and solid. 

If we delve deep into both the theories, some astonishing revelations 
surface out. 

AUM and the String theory

The underlying essence of the `Super-string theory, is that all 
particles and fundamental forces of nature trace their origin to tiny 
super-symmetric strings. The basic idea propounded by the `Quantum 
Field theory' is also more or less the same. According to the latter, 
the rudimentary constituents of reality are strings of Planck length, 
which vibrate at resonant frequencies. The strings, by and large, are 
equal in length and wrap around dimensions, smaller than themselves. 
Singularities are avoided because the `Big Crunch' prohibits such a 
possibility of the Universe, even at the most intense stage being 
reduced to zero size. Hence, the String theory dictates that the 
Universe could never have been smaller than an imaginary string (of 
Planck length) and that at this point it, the universe actually 
begins expanding. 

In Vedic scriptures, `AUM' has been stated as the first manifestation 
of `Brahman'. Brahman, it says, eventually evolved into the Universe 
we today see. But how? It has been mentioned that the cosmos stemmed 
from the utterance or rather the vibration produced by the 
sound `AUM'. Hindu cosmology believes that the closest approximation 
to the initial form of the Universe is `AUM', since all the existence 
is composed of vibration. Walking that extra spiritual mile, the 
texts also mention that `AUM' signifies the ultimate Truth. In 
attaining the truth, one realizes the fundamental unity. The 
symbolism of AUM, can be elucidated as such: The lower curve, the 
upper curve and the tail subsumed in one, the ultimate One, which is 
represented by the crescent moon and a dot called `Chandra Bindu'. 
The crescent moon, because it resembles a string. This is remarkably 
similar to the modern day quantum physics, which believes that the 
universe is essentially composed of waves.

Brahman and the Fractal nature of the Universe 

In Manu Smrti, a very catchy description of the formation of the 
Universe is given. An intense sphere of many dimensions, split into 
two, thus creating the Earth and the Heavens. In Mahabharata, during 
the churning of the oceans, the deity Vishnu appears in numerous 
incarnations, some negative and some positive, some dark and some 

In the Bhagvad Gita, when Sri Krishna reveals his true Brahmanic form 
to Arjuna, he cries out `Behold... my divine forms, Oh! Arjuna, 
hundreds upon thousands, of various kinds, of various colours and 
shapes.' (Bhagvad Gita 91). Says he further, "This very day you shall 
behold the whole Universe with all things animate and inert made out 
of me" (Bhagvad Gita 91). These narrations can be likened to 
the `Fractal Universe' conceived by the String theory. 

The String theory portrays the entire eternal universe as an 
inconceivably large Fractal. The Fractal is a mathematical system or 
rather a pattern that at various levels explains the multi-faceted 
aspects of the Universe. For example, the temperature and other 
physical conditions of Human body exhibit a Fractal nature. The 
Mandelbrot set is the most prominent and complex of all fractals. All 
collections of points within the Mandelbrot set are connected to each 
other in a web that binds all the points together. There are hidden 
and infinitesimally tiny patterns, which can be studied by 
corresponding magnifications. If the Mandelbrot set is imagined as a 
miniature universe, a number of amazing similarities develop.

In the Chandogya Upanishad, Brahman "is the origin and the destiny of 
the world. Into him the world will be dissolved." That should 
indicate that the Brahman is not only the entire Universe but also 
every object in it is a subset of the Brahman. In a Fractal just as 
the points are interconnected, in the Brahman too all entities are 
interrelated and interdependent. Brahman, like a Fractal is varied 
and complex. 

James Gleick, the mathematician and physicist, who extensively 
researched on the `Fractal Universe' theory has authored a 
book `Chaos', wherein he gives a mind-boggling description of the 
Mandelbrot set: "The Mandelbrot set is the most complex object in 
Mathematics. An eternity would not be enough time to see it all, its 
disks studded with prickly thorns, its spirals and filaments curling 
outward and around, bearing bulbous molecules that hang, infinitely 
variegated like grapes on God's personal vineyard." 

If one assumes Sri Krishna to be describing himself as the Fractal 
heart of the Universe, when he says - ` I am the Atman, that dwells 
in the heart of every mortal creature. I am the beginning, the 
lifespan and the end of all ... I am the divided Seed of all. There is 
no limit to my divine manifestations... one atom of myself sustains the 
Universe' - one can jump to the conclusion that Brahman (here 
Krishna) is nothing but a poetic portrayal of the `Fractal Universe'. 
Srinivasa Ramanujan, based on certain mathematical functions best 
explained the String theory. His works consisted of 4000 formulae on 
400 pages filling 3 volumes of notes. The `Ramanujan function' as 
recognized by Michio Kaku, forms the backbone of the String theory. 
Kaku says Ramanujan used to say that the Goddess of Namakkal inspired 
him with the formulae in his dreams! 

The `Big Bang' `Big crunch' and the `World Egg'

Upanishads have said, "this world is verily just food and the eater 
of the food" (Brihad Aranyaka 1.4, 1.8). How ridiculous, how 
illogical! But when one tries to comprehend the Upanishads with the 
knowledge of Newtonian physics, this statement holds fully valid. In 
Newtonian physics, all action needs energy. And energy is a form of 
matter. There was a time when mater and energy were one. 

According to the String theory, before the Big Bang, when matter and 
energy were perfectly one, our cosmos was actually a ten-dimensional 
universe. This, it says, eventually cracked into two - one a four 
dimensional universe and another a six-dimensional universe. The one 
with four dimensions had three spatial dimensions and a fourth 
dimension called `time'. Rig Veda, likewise says that once upon a 
time, Brahman was neither existent nor inexistent. He was void and 
formless. By his great power of warmth was born the universe. Can the 
two get any closer?

The `World egg' as spoken about in Manu Smrti, was extremely 
contracted and violently intense. It had ten dimensions. `The Big 
Bang' was the four dimensional universe and `the Big Crunch' was the 
violently compressing six-dimensional universe. 

To get a wider and more lucid idea of how the ancient Upanishads 
insinuated the modern-day theories in their own spectacular ways, one 
has to examine the mathematical aspects involved. However the 
physical aspects clarify one thing: There exists a tiny umbilical 
chord connecting the traditional eastern mythology and the modern 
western cosmology. Shouldn't we shed more light on this chord? >>

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