Science and Religion for Freedom and Happiness
SCIENCE - SPIRITUALITY, 11 Sep 2017
Surya Nath Prasad, Ph. D. – TRANSCEND Media Service
8 Sep 2017 – Freedom is the pre-condition for happiness. Great intellectual Saint Tulasidas, the author of the popular ancient Indian epic Ramcharitmanas also said, “There is no happiness in slavery even in dreams.”
Jean-Jack Rousseau, defining natural man as being free and happy and living in the forest, has written in the opening of The Social Contract, “Man is born free and everywhere he is in chains,” and he has shown us the way to break the chains from within to be free and happy.
The UN International Happiness Day was founded on June 28, 2012 by United Nations adviser Jayme Illien, who was an orphan rescued from the streets of Calcutta in India by Mother Teresa’s International Mission of Hope Charities. Jayme Illien was later adopted by single American woman named Anna Belle Illien. UN Happiness Day was celebrated throughout the world on the 20th of March. Jayme Illien is a great hope for others who are victims of a variety of slavery to be free to be happy.
The Global Energy Parliament, The International Science, Sustainability, and Peace platform of the Isa Viswa Prajnana Trust, founded by Jagadguru Swami Isa – the UN-ECOSOC deserves thanks for seriously thinking about the happiness and freedom for all mankind, and for organizing The Global Students’ Energy Parliament in Thiruvananthapuram, India on November 6-7, 2017 on the theme, “Science for Happiness and Freedom” to contribute to the happiness and freedom of humankind and the whole world with belief and hope to hear some fresh ideas from the global student community on the same. On this occasion, organizers of the parliament have announced to give The GEP 2017 Award in two categories: Youth and Adult, in recognition of great contributions to society on this year’s theme, “Science for Happiness and Freedom.”
The science alone cannot enable the man (him or her) to be free to be happy. No doubt, science has facilitated many things for human prosperity, but it has also helped to lose humanity’s peace of mind (happiness). Science alone cannot bring peace (happiness) within the individual and in the world as a whole. It has led to unrest and war simultaneously with progress. Mere science creates doubts, fear and terror in man which disturb peace or happiness. Science enables man to be free from the tyranny of the environment, but it fails to free him from the tyranny of his own nature.
But its twin – the religion can complement in the role of science for making human beings free to be happy. I mean science and religion both can jointly lead to every man and woman to be free and happy.
Science and religion both are essential for the full development of every man and woman. Millikan, a Nobel Prize Winner in Physics said, “Human well- being and all human progress rest at bottom upon two pillars: (1) the spirit of religion, and (2) the spirit of science (or knowledge)”. Alexis Carrel, Nobel Laureate in Medicine expresses similar views, “None of the acquisitions made by humanity must be set aside. By utilizing at the same time intellect and faith, science and religion, mathematics and love, we shall be able to do what science and religion acting separately, have been incapable of doing.” Dean W. R. Mathew
told, “I pray that the course of development in both (science and religion) may bring them closure together, each learning from the other, so that these two majestic forms of the spirit of man may unite in the worship and service of the God of truth.”
Albert Einstein rightly observed, “Science without religion is lame; religion without science is blind.” Einstein’s observation on science and religion can be explained by citing a story that there was severe fire in a village. All the inhabitants of the village, except two handicapped – a lame and a blind, moved to the safe place to save their lives from the fire. But the left behind, the lame and blind also succeeded to move to the safe place through helping each other by way of sitting by the lame (the science) on the shoulder of blind (the religion).
It is hard truth that no body, no ism can give happiness and freedom to anybody except the man – himself or herself. But question arises, then how it is possible? There is the only way that every man and woman are supposed to be well-versed knowledgeable in theory and practice about science and religion both for not to be handicapped as lame or blind. The Bhagat Gta rightly proclaims that there is prosperity and peace (freedom and happiness) on the earth for those who will learn and follow the laws of inner and outer life.
Hence to get salvation/freedom from his or her own passion, desires and animal nature, man needs religion. Religion searches beyond science, and wants to probe into the ultimate origin of the universe and man.
Education is inclusive of science and religion with all the disciplines being their dynamic and practical side. And only right kind of education can liberate the human beings from several bondages which leads them to be happy as it is also
visioned in Viṣṇu Purāṇa, which is as ascribed to Sage Parāśara: “sā vidyā yā vimuktaye,” Education is that which liberates. And only free man and woman can attain happiness by the right kind of education as it is stated in the very ancient Indian book: Hitopadeśa (Beneficial Advice):
Vidya Dadati Vinayam Vinyadyati Patratam.
Ptrattvaddhanamapno Dhanadddharmam Tatah Sukham.
Education makes man discipline, from discipline comes worthiness.
From worthiness he can get wealth, wealth earned through discipline and worthiness incites/motivates man to serve the people and to do good deeds, which gives him or her happiness.
Thus education (true education) is the only happiness.
But education was and is not based on the principle and advice as cited above. Hence the mis-education everywhere has been destroying to those a few privileged well-to-do to whom it reaches and also to those maximum poor and down-trodden to whom it is denied.
Therefore, the author of these lines has been thoroughly studying the concept of man and universe in relation to the concept of education for the last more than forty five years since1970, and keeping in his mind the real meaning of education, he has developed his own concept of Universal Peace Education, which is based on universally inherent five elements, viz. body, vitality, mind, intellect and spirit (earth, air, water, fire and ether/space) in every man and woman without any discrimination, in this sense, considering him or her a miniature universe, with its novel method of learning in place of teaching considering no body teaches anybody, we all lean from each other, we all are learners, and with the proposal for its availability for all leaving none and it will be for life-long to be truly free to be happy, and above all with the request to the United Nations to direct its member nation-states to introduce the Universal Peace Education in their countries to enable their people to attain their freedom to achieve happiness.
Dr. Surya Nath Prasad, former president & currently executive vice president of International Association of Educators for World Peace (IAEWP), associate professor of education emeritus, former visiting professor, the graduate institute of peace studies, Kyung Hee University, Republic of Korea, founder & editor-in-chief, Peace Education: An International Journal.
This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 11 Sep 2017.
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