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Alain Danielou - While the Gods Play - 01 The Experimental Method (Vaisheshika)



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Alain Danielou – While the Gods Play  

VAISHESHIKA is the study of the impermanent (kshara), the visible or apparent world (vyakta).The word Vaisheshika means "study of particulars, " that is, the observation of the perceptible world. With the aid of the methods of logic (Nyaya), the Vaisheshika constitutes what can be called the scientific approach, which uses reasoning, deduction, hypothesis, and experimentation to analyse the information provided by the senses, whose perceptions are limited to the visible or impermanent world, also called the "world of movement" (jagat) since it is formed only of energy through which it manifests itself in the form of gravitation and pulsations.

Using observation as a starting point, by analysing the data provided by our senses and noting the points common to various forms of observation, we can deduce some general principles. The scientific method calls for the development of the means of observation, the instruments that increase the power of the senses. Telescopes, microscopes, and radar today allow us to push our observations even further. Yet these remain limited by the very nature of the senses. We do not observe reality in itself but reality in relation to the limits nature imposes on us.

However, the development of psychic powers, which are part of physical man but are not usually developed, allow the addition of important elements of observation. These powers, developed by the techniques of Yoga, such as perception beyond the limits of dimension and of relative time, can eventually be used. They belong to the physical world and are in no way occult.

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