How to Actualize Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam

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This year, the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moves the hands of the Doomsday Clock forward. The Clock now stands at 90 seconds to midnight—the closest to global catastrophe it has ever been.

India formally took over the presidency of G-20 from Indonesia on December 2nd. The Indian Prime Minister said the country will promote a “universal sense of oneness,” while it leads the G-20. This is significant for India as all five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council are members of G-20.

My research into technologies for achieving perfection in manufacturing and services spanning several decades, while I was on the faculty of Chemical Engineering at the University of Louisville (1975 – 2008), has produced certain discoveries during my retirement years that directly address how the feelings of one world, one family, can be actualized.

See also this perceptive article on the Indian philosophy during its G-20 presidency: Living up to India’s G20 Philosophy in the Indian Express on December 14, 2022.

Throughout history human beings have found new and devious ways to portray themselves as superior to others, be it on the basis of race, caste, religion, gender, or national origin.

In contrast, India is desirous of demonstrating how the sense of oneness is beneficial to everyone.

The following challenges need to be addressed before progress can be made:

  • Open-mindedness and a willingness to think outside the box are essential to progress.
  • Much of the world mistakenly believes that products of reason, such as sciences, laws, policies, etc., are sufficient to solve all problems, while ancient Indian sages have demonstrated that transcending reason is the pathway to solve many problems when reason alone is insufficient, and to make new discoveries.
  • Much of the world is generally not aware of the strong link of internal/emotional excellence to the performance in the external world. Boost emotional excellence and the performance will zoom.

India, at the helm of G-20, has a challenge on its hand to first convince world leaders, movers, thinkers, and shakers the truthfulness of these assertions. When it is done, there will be real prospects for success in actualizing Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam.

The following paragraphs explain how.

How the Universe was created

To begin, we have to understand how creation happens.

The universe was created pursuant to the big bang event when it was an incredibly small, unbelievably hot, and immensely dense energy phrase some 13.8 billion years ago.

All scientific theories are provisional in that as more and more data materializes that supports the theory, our confidence in the theory rises, but if a single data point were to materialize that contradicts the theory, then, that theory must be abandoned in favor of a new or modified theory.

Stephen Hawking in “A Brief History of Time”

The energy phase then produced the universe which has been expanding ever since.

So, on one side of the energy phase is this ever-expanding universe but what’s on the other side?

The universe may end one day but consciousness will remain for it is eternal.”

His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Absolutely nothing, a void. And this void cannot be anything else but undifferentiated consciousness (Kowall, 2014).

Physicists have no explanation for how “nothing” can produce “something” the energy phase of the big bang event.

We all have consciousness, the differentiated kind. This is where the notion of Advaita (I am a microcosm of that) comes from.

Saamkhya hypothesis posits that all creation comprises of five principal elements: Earth (the periodic table is believed to be complete. Whatever is on earth is elsewhere in the universe), Water, Fire–Heat, Air, and Akash (consciousness and energy).

Furthermore, all creation is endowed with three Gunas (S, R, and T). The three Gunas are strongly correlated with the two human emotions; Positive emotions and Negative emotions.

Positive emotions include, unconditional love, kindness, empathy and compassion.

Negative emotions encompass anger, hatred, hostility, resentment, frustration, jealousy, fear, sorrow, and the like.

Sir Jagdish Chandra Bose proved that even plants feel pain and metals experience stress. Bose is considered a father of radio science, and he was knighted in 1917 and elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 1920.

How was life created?

Once the conditions on Earth became conducive to supporting life, single-cell organisms appeared, which over billions of years evolved into ape-like creatures, which then evolved into human beings over millions of years.

So says the theory of evolution.

Human beings, too, are comprised of the five principal elements.

Even given all the matter present in the human body, together with water, heat, and air, it is not possible to create life. The missing element is Akash, consciousness and energy.

Consciousness and energy come into us when we come out of our mother’s womb and take our first breath and leave us when we exhale for the last time and die.

Science has no explanation for where the first single-cell organism got its consciousness and energy.

What Unites Us

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 2014 convocation address at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi gives a hint at what unites us.

Human beings have trillions of cells. If we break down the cells into even smaller parts, we will find that they are comprised of atoms. Atoms have a nucleus, which contains neutrons and protons, and there are electrons that orbit them.

Atoms are vibrating all the time. Thus, we are all vibrating creatures at the fundamental level.

Vibrations can be thought of as light, not necessarily visible light, but light along the entire electromagnetic spectrum, from infrared to ultraviolet.

If you wish to understand the universe, think of energy, frequency and vibrations.

Nikola Tesla following his interactions with Swami Vivekananda in 1893

Our vibrational characteristics is our fundamental nature and the nature of our vibrational characteristics can unite us or divide us.

Measuring Our Vibrational Characteristics

The human vibrational characteristics cannot be measured with the five senses because the signals are too weak. They have to be stimulated and amplified for measurement purposes.

In one approach, a wireless RF (radio frequency) signal is used for stimulation and amplification. See this short video clip.

In another, a harmless electrical signal is applied to the fingers of both hands, one at a time. The finger’s response to this electrical stimulus is a burst of photons, which are captured on a digital computer and analyzed. The intensity of the discharge and its area tell us all about our vibrational characteristics. See this video clip.

Our vibrational characteristics depend on two factors: Inherited traits and how we have lived our life to the present age.

The vibrational characteristics have nothing to do with race, religion, gender or nationality.

Our vibrational characteristics are strongly influenced by emotions.

Negative emotions deteriorate them while positive emotions strengthen them.

In the ideal state, an individual’s emotions would not be influenced by external conditions that are part of daily life.

In other words, an individual remains centered in the presence of the most extenuating circumstances. This is metaphorically indicated by the presence of a cobra around the neck of Shiva.

The light characteristics of such an individual would appear something like that depicted in Figure 1.

Figure 1. Ideal Vibrational Characteristics

Incarnations and prophets of various faiths may display such vibrational characteristics. The feelings of oneness are expected to be abundant in them. The vibrational characteristics of an individual carrying a high load of emotional stress are depicted in Figure 2.

There would be no prospects for Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam if everyone had such vibrational characteristics.

Figure 2. Individual Carrying High Level of Emotional Stress

Negative emotions produce stress, positive emotions do not.

Thus, actualization of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam translates into the problem of transforming the emotions of sufficiently large number of people across the world from negative emotions into positive emotions, i.e., enhancing the global level of emotional excellence.

Pursuit of the Ideal Vibrational State

The pursuit of positive emotions at the exclusion of negative emotions is not an intellectual exercise. It also means living up to the philosophy of G-20 during India’s presidency is not an intellectual exercise.

A thirty-day self-assessment will offer convincing evidence that such is the case.

That is, products of reason aren’t sufficient to bring about the required positive changes.

For progress, the required positive changes have to come about from within. This is what Indian sages have tried to convey throughout the ages.

Swami Vivekananda is one among them.

Says he, “Indian thought dares to seek and successfully find something higher than reason.

Swami Ji is revered in India and widely respected in the United States (The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal). He received a rock-star reception after his speech at the Parliament of World Religions in Chicago during his maiden trip to the United States in 1893.

Science is the appropriate body of knowledge to use when the fundamentals of the system under scrutiny are well understood, but when they are not, a data-driven methodology such as six sigma can be used, provided measurements are available. When system fundamentals are not well understood and measurements are not available, then, these two methods of inquiry cease to be useful. Enhancing the focus of attention, as with meditation, then, remains the only viable pathway for solving problems and to make new discoveries. Take care though, the discoveries that come about by enhancing the focus of attention must nonetheless obey the constraints imposed by reason and logical consistency.

Pradeep B. Deshpande and James P. Kowall

Meditation, or more generally yoga, is a pathway to bring about positive changes from within for a higher level of emotional excellence.

Nobel Laureate Elizabeth Blackburn has shown that high levels of stress shorten telomeres accelerating aging. In an article in Nature, Blackburn and Elissa Epel warned world leaders about the societal costs of stress. Blackburn suggested that meditation might lengthen telomeres, and thus, reversing the effects of aging. Medical researchers have shown that meditation does in fact lengthen telomeres and reverse the effects of aging.
The vibrational characteristics of a long-time meditator are depicted in Figure 3. Individuals displaying such characteristics are expected to have progressed in the journey to actualize the feelings of one world, one family.

Figure 3. Vibrational Characteristic of a Long-Time Meditator

Implementation Issues

Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam being an Indian initiative, Indians have the first opportunity to help actualize it. This means, the practices need to be introduced in schools and colleges.

Indian organizations and corporations also should adopt the scientific principles and practices in their workday routines. They will see the benefits in short order.

All this needs to be replicated throughout the world.

The United Nations has already adopted June 21st as International Yoga Day. Now, that day would be seen to assume added significance for actualizing Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam.

Acknowledgments

This article is written with the blessings of H. H. Guru Mahan, Founder, Universal Peace Foundation (www.universalpeacefoundation.org). On December 18th, Guru Mahan went into three weeks of meditation with no food for world peace, and this is his 33rd year.

The author offers his grateful thanks to Tony Belak, Mediation Consultant and former Ombudsman, University of Louisville, for his editorial help.

You can only take the horses to the pond, but you can’t make them drink.

Sri Krishna alludes to this in the Bhagvad Geeta

Interactions with Dr. James P. Kowall, MD, PhD, Vedic Linguistics scholar, Dr. S. N. Bhavasar, and computer scientist, Sanjeev Aroskar over the years are gratefully acknowledged.

Further Reading

  1. Deshpande, P. B., East Meets West: What It Will Take to be Vishwa Guru, 2022 (amazon).
  2. Deshpande, Pradeep B. and Kowall, James P., The Nature of Ultimate Reality and How It Can Transform Our World: Evidence from Modern Physics; Wisdom of YODA, 2015 (amazon).
  3. Deshpande, Pradeep B., Racial Harmony: the role of religion and spirituality is essential, Dialogue and Alliance, Winter 2021. (Dialogue and Alliance is a publication of the Universal Peace Federation, a New York City-based international organization with consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Cultural Council). This volume contains remarks by many heads of state, religious leaders and luminaries, and this article was one of three featured in this volume.
  4. DeshpandePradeep B., Scientific Framework for World Transformation, Dialogue and Alliance, 33, 1, June 2019.
  5. Deshpande, Pradeep B., Six Sigma for Karma Capitalism, 2015 (amazon).

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