“The Hindu religion is the only one of the world’s great faiths dedicated to the idea that the Cosmos itself undergoes an immense, indeed an infinite, number of deaths and rebirths.
It is the only religion in which the time scales correspond to those of modern scientific cosmology. Its cycles run from our ordinary day and night to a day and night of Brahma, 8.64 billion years long. Longer than the age of the Earth or the Sun and about half the time since the Big Bang.”
-- Carl Sagan
'Hindu cosmology's time-scale for the universe is in consonance with modern science'
Carl Sagan, the distinguished Cornell University astronomer and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, who succumbed to his battle against cancer on December 15, in fact lived for millions of years in the relative time scale of experience.
This legend in his own lifetime was a first grade philosopher, poet, scientist and a splendid example of human greatness all rolled into one.
His true genius lay in the many esoteric philosophical and scientific endeavours which only specialists can really appreciate. But he became an instant pop science icon when he co-authored COSMOS, a television series devoted to astronomy and space exploration.
A part of that awesome series was shot in India. In the early eighties, Sagan met then Indian diplomat Placido P D'Souza and in a conversation explained the India connection and the relevance of Gandhi.
You have been host of the television programme COSMOS which deals with astronomy and science exploration. And yet India figured in this programme. Could you tell us how India fits into this series?
Let me first say something about the series in general, and something about the Indian part of the series. The television series COSMOS is designed to breach the barrier that many people feel about science. They cannot understand it, and it is foreign to them in approach and content. Our experience is that children grow up with an absolute zest and passion for science, and something happens to discourage some of them - sometimes many of them - from pursuing this interest.
We thought it was our job to excite the children, and reawaken the interest in science of adults. So we will use any approach to gain people's attention, and show them that science is something not just that they can understand, but that they can become excited about and can use as part of the way they view the world.
The series has been extraordinarily successful. It has been shown in a year or two in the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China. I hope some day it will be shown in India. The tenth episode of COSMOS is largely about cosmology - the study of the universe in a perspective in which the Earth is like a grain to stand in vast beach or desert - and the way we approach the subject is through Hindu cosmology.
Contniuation : http://www.rediff.com/news/jan/29sagan.htm (Must Read)
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Thursday, January 16, 2014
Hinduism and cosmos.
HINDUISM AND COSMOS