The False Religion of Scientific Knowledge
an essay by Adi Da Samraj
cientists tend to imagine themselves to be “humanists,” or individuals who possess a superior regard for the well-being of mankind. Indeed, organized groups of scientists commonly promote themselves as a kind of independently superior and humanistic conscience, whereas in fact their general effect on the world is often quite the opposite. (At the very least, their effect is no more superior or ultimately beneficial than that of any other organized and socially powerful point of view, past or present.)
The scientific establishment has been organized in league with the highest levels of concentrated political, economic, and propagandistic power in the world today. Science is simply the primary method of knowing in modern societies, and its rule is established in no less an irrational and authoritarian manner than was the case with any religious or philosophical principle that ruled societies in the past.
“Science has become a world-view…It has become a religion, although a false one. And modern societies are Cults of this new religion.”
The method of science has now become a style of existence, a mood or strategy of relating to the world and to other human beings. That method now describes the conventional posture taken by “Everyman” in every form of his relationship to the conditions of existence. Science has become a world-view, a presumption about the World-Process itself. It has become a religion, although a false one. And modern societies are Cults of this new religion.
“Can this new religion establish us as individuals and communities in right relationship to each other and to the World-Process? Absolutely not!”
Can this new religion establish us as individuals and communities in right relationship to each other and to the World-Process? Absolutely not! Science is only a method of inquiry, or knowing about. It is not itself the right, true, or inherent form of our relationship to the conditions of existence. No matter what we may know about the conditions of existence, we cannot account for existence itself. And we are, regardless of our personal and present state of knowledge about the natural mechanics of the world, always responsible for our right relationship to the various conditions of experience, to the beings with whom we exist in this world, and to the World-Process as a whole. Relationship is inherently and perpetually a matter of individual responsibility, founded in intuition, prior to the analytical mind.
The method that is science is inherently incapable of establishing us in a right relationship to the conditions of existence. Love and self-transcendence are realized outside or prior to the play of conventional knowledge. The scientific method is not a moral or a spiritual and intuitive disposition. It is a strategy for acquiring objective knowledge. If it were a moral disposition, then scientists would all be great moral beings. But in fact, the daily application of the scientific method is not itself a moral practice, or a kind of meditation that transforms the practitioner. Rather, the application of the strategy of scientific inquiry is only a special intellectual discipline, and it forever stands outside the higher intuitive and radical psycho-physical processes whereby the individual may be transformed in either evolutionary or moral or spiritual terms.
Those who embrace the attitude of verbal thinking, observing, analyzing, comparing, categorizing, and so forth must understand that to do so is not the same thing as to exist and live in the most fundamental and responsible terms. Rather, it is merely a way of observing and verbally considering the patterns of phenomena, in order to know about them. And if one abandons the fundamental process of self-transcending Communion and unity with the World-Process, and opts instead and exclusively for the position of the separated analytical observer, then one begins to operate in defiant opposition to the primary conditions of human existence.
Science must again become simply a method of inquiry, and it must be renounced as the universal style of our very relationship to the conditions of existence. It must cease to characterize the totality of Man himself. Rather, it must again become an “employee” of Man-a specialized instrument for certain kinds of work. Otherwise, Man will cease to be capable of either the moral or the spiritual and evolutionary exercise of personal responsibility.
The verbal mind, or the left hemisphere of the human brain, is not suited to be the Ruler of Man. It is only an attribute or potentiality of Man. Therefore the “urge” to science, which is the ultimate method of the analytical or verbal mind, must be disciplined and held in right perspective by a higher or more complete understanding. Every exercise of a part of Man must be understood relative to Man as a whole, and submitted to the process and ultimate Condition that includes and involves Man prior to all his knowledge.
The right hemisphere of the human brain was once the Ruler of Man, in early societies founded in the methods of magic, psychism, and a truly active and inward religious consciousness. But the method of psychic inquiry proved to have severe limitations, because of the variables involved in personal subjective processes and the competitive conflicts between societies organized around different historical accumulations of conventional religious belief. Therefore, the functions of the left hemisphere of the human brain began to evolve and to achieve cultural prominence. And now they are the dominant characteristic of modern verbal and analytical Man. But the results of the dominance of the left brain are equally as limited, troublesome, and psychologically devastating as the results of dominance by the right brain.
The right-brained or “oriental” Man enjoys psychic attunement with the World-Process, but he cannot differentiate himself sufficiently to acquire responsibility for his destiny in the natural world of psycho-physical phenomena. And the left-brained or “occidental” Man, even though he is committed to responsible analysis of natural phenomena and control over the laws that govern the World-Process, is incapable of the higher morality or disposition of self-surrender, self-transcendence, psychic illumination, and participatory Communion with the Radiant Transcendental Reality that may be intuited to be the Truth of the World-Process and the Source of the Happiness of Man.
Therefore, we must awaken from our solid pose of intellectual superiority and our irrational belief that knowledge about the processes of natural phenomena makes a superior humanity. A superior humanity will not be derived from authoritarian scientific decrees, imposed through powerful technologies. Man cannot live happily, nor survive long, without the intuitive certainty of Transcendental Love, or Spiritual Communion with Divine Power, Bliss, and Purpose. Without higher religious consciousness (free of the dogmatic nonsense of conventional religious beliefs), the future made by scientific acculturation is an abominable fiction, a mechanical contrivance in which Man is, paradoxically, both satisfied in his desires and desperate in his being.
And I do not argue this point of view out of despair. I have Realized the Truth, and I see the present and the ancient errors in Man. I am also a knower about the natural world, except that I have been committed to the higher discipline of Man as a totality, and Man as an inherent Sacrifice in God. Therefore, I have seen all the mechanisms of our evolution, and I have understood all the necessary structures of a true culture of Man. But it is extremely difficult to be heard in the midst of a society that is bound and determined to follow its present strategy to the end of its course. The Wisdom of transforming our disposition before we fail is considered disdainfully by the popular and intellectual mentalizing of this day. Everyone is endlessly chatting, comparing concepts, looking for consoling pleasures, fascinations of mind and body. Everyone is possessed by a lust for knowledge about the natural world and about the experiential mechanism of Man. But it seems that very few are interested in being Man at this present time. Very few seem willing to accept the discipline that is the totality of Man and to fulfill the destiny of personal transformation in bodily, emotional, psychic, mental, and Transcendental unity with the Radiant Mystery of the World-Process, which is eternally prior to all our knowing.