Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Human Evolution

Evolution is the change in the inherited characteristics of biological populations over successive generations. Evolutionary processes give rise to diversity at every level of biological organisation, including species, individual organisms and molecules such as DNA and proteins

In the realms of the infinite pages of history, within the magnificent premises of ancient and modern temples, inside the impressive giant laboratories where scientific marvels are put to engineering processes, in the lavish conference rooms of offices and even within the four walls of a simple home, there has always been a recurrent emotion, a persistent thought, since a little later than the advent of time.
Science and Religion dont get along very well.
Where on one hand Science believes in proofs, religion believes in faith.
The problem Science has with Religion is that science wants proofs, analysis, experiments and results. It cant just let religion base every answer on some myth without a sound proof or physical viability of that myth. "Shiva cannot hold up mighty Ganga in his hairs because thats not at all possible. So, stop throwing food and polluting it", science would say

The problem Religion has with Science is that Religion thinks the world needs Science but Science is a bit immature at this stage to understand every possible attribute of the world. Religion says what Science claims as "discoveries" and "inventions" are actually "realizations", as the concepts, the findings were very much there since the beginning of time, its only later that scientists found it out or realized its existence. Religion says it has answers to all things which science currently doesnt have.
"Ganga is our Goddess and offering obligations to it would bring prosperity in life and taking a dip would rid you of diseases.", religion would say

At times through this blog, I have brought forward ideas which completely prove the existence of some or the other scientific concept in various symbols and notions of religion through visible and proven facts. At times, there have been no visible facts, but the scientific concepts perfectly match the religious corollaries.

With this post I wish to put forward a religious concept which exists in perfect tandem with a scientific theory. The difference? The proof, in this case, would be the religious concept itself.

It is believed that the cryptic language in which the Vedas are written, turn out to be different for each of its readers. It is also believed that a true seeker of knowledge would get in Vedas what he or she seeks to find and attain.
On one hand the Vedas are known to be the words of God, on the other hand, a certain Nasadiya Shukta of Rig Veda states that maybe the world got formed first and then God came into existence.

The beginning of it all: What science claims as the beginning of earth is the "Big Bang Theory". Interestingly, Hinduism has a similar concept where a primordial sound is known to be the source of all life on earth when a higher state of Consciousness, OM is believed to have given birth to all of the world. While in Hinduism, Brahma takes care of all evolution and creation processes, science claims it to be Higgs Boson, or the "God particle", the particle responsible for the Big Bang itself.

Dual Nature of Matter: As per the Brihadranayak Upanishad, there only was the soul. Then, the soul divided itself into male(pati) and female(patni), the soul-mates. The Upanishad mentions that the female turned itself into a cow, so the male turned itself into a bull. In a similar way, everything that exists in pairs was created. If there is Shiva, there is Sati. If there is light, there is darkness.
The above concept closely resembles the law of duality in particles. For every negative, there is a positive. For every south pole, there is a north pole. If there is black, there is white. There are protons, and there are electrons. Even for neutrons, there are anti-neutrons.

Bhagvad Geeta talks of duality of pain and pleasure, of desire and hate, of life and death.

Dashavatar: The very elements of Dashavatars are viable proofs of the belief of Hinduism in the theory of evolution. Modern theory of evolution claims that humans have evolved as a gradual process, which resulted in the unfolding of this evolution, forming a chain of species where organisms purely based in water, ie fish, were the first link of that chain.

Matsya: As per the theory of evolution, Proto-Amphibians that primarily lived in water can be seen as the first stage of life. These creatures first appeared some 540 million years ago.
A starking resemblance is the first Avatar of Vishnu, Matsya Avatar, which was actually a fish that helped Manu save the world. the literal meaning of Matsya is fish.

Kurma: The second step of evolution of life, were creatures that could live on land as well as in water, like
the tortoise. The reptiles appeared almost 385 million years ago on earth.
Kurma Avatar is in form of a tortoise. It becomes a part of the legendary Amrut Manthan where Halahal poison was also churned out, drinking which, Shiva became Neelkanth.

Varaha: Reptiles gradually evolved to form the semi-amphibians, which later evolved to form first complete animals, which could exist purely on land. They could bear children and walk on land.
Varaha, or the boar was the third Avatar of Vishnu. Interestingly, boar was the first mammal to have whose teeth were at the front, and so didnt swallow food but eat more like humans.

Ironically, Vishnu in this Avatar took earth out of water and placed it in the solar system.

Narsimha: The mammals or semi-amphibians gradually evolved to become human-like creatures, which could walk on two legs, used their hands to hold things, but the brain was still not that developed. They had a human like lower body and animal like upper body.
Though not exactly apes, Narsimha Avatar fits into the above description pretty well. Though not a direct reference, it would certainly mean an ape man.
An interesting point here is that those who are aware of the story of Narsimha, he appears at a time, place and setting, where each attribute is in the middle of two things(neither human nor animal, neither at home nor outside, neither day nor night)

Vamana: Some 5 million years ago, Homo Erectus got evolved. The organisms of this species were much more like humans. They walked on two legs, had lesser facial hairs, and had an upper body like a human. However, they were dwarves
The Vamana avatar of Vishnu could also relate to Neanderthals, which are known to be quite shorter than humans.

Parsuram: The Rama with the Axe. Finally the first Homo-sapiens arrived and they were hunters and nomads. They were tall, could talk and had tools to hunt down their food.
Parsuram was the first complete human Avatar of Vishnu, the attributes fitting perfectly with that of an early man which could hunt and use tools for his own needs. Parsuram is known for his anger and rage, much like the early man which existed without a proper society in place.

Rama: Finally, a society is evolved out of needs of humans to live, eat and co-exist. The society has rules, and is God-fearing and abiding. It is important to follow rules, rage and unsocial behaviour is cut down. Fellow humans are respected and people abide to law and order.
Rama, the complete man would be the Avatar that could be called as the perfect social human being. Rama respected and followed rules of the society. He would also respect the saints and kill those who would torment the sages and the oppressed ones.

Krishna:  A close friend prompts Krishna as the complete modern man. The theory of survival of fittest comes into play and now humans have become much smarter and has started enjoying music, dance and festivals. There have been war around and feuds within the family. Society has become shrewd and a devious attribute is the need of the time.
It would feel like I am giving a description of Krishna himself. He was smart, devious and a skillfull manager. More like a modern day man.

Buddha: More like futuristic, a stage which we have not yet encountered. Theory of evolution would suggest a drop in the restlessness of the world after some stage, as it could not go on forever, and peace would be restored back in the world. Maybe the avatar of Gautam Buddha, would be Hinduism's futuristic vision to tell the world what it has in store in the coming times.

The critics of the Dashavatar-evolution analogy claim that Dashavatar were not strictly in the order in which they are famously drawn out. The legends in which they appear do not follow a strict ordering. Also, maybe the relation to theory of evolution is a far fetched theory out of a simple concept of Avatars being there. to defeat evil and sustain life on the earth. Even if this indeed is a far-fetched theory, the analogy is quite fascinating. If Vishnu had indeed decided to take these Avatars, he took them in accordance with the various stages of evolution, which was much later discovered, or shall I say, realized, by Charles Darwin. Gives me one more reason to say, as I did in The Matrix Reloaded, maybe the concepts of Hinduism are such scientific, they apply to every modern and logical concept of the world.

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