Reports & Notes
Science Sustainability and indian national resurgence


May 18/2008

A book that searches a new path
By Deepak Kumar Rath

Dr Joshi’s book on Science Sustainability and Indian National Resurgence released

IT was an auspicious evening when a timely book on Science Sustainability and Indian National Resurgence by Dr M. M. Joshi was released by renowned scientist and former Union Minister of State for Science and Technology Prof. M.G.K. Menon at a function held in New Delhi on May 7, 2008. There was a galaxy of intellectuals from various walks of life, which ornamented the occasion. The function continued for more than two hours in which prominent scholars, academicians and scientists delivered their speeches. The function was organised by the Centre for Policy Studies, Chennai.

The experts like Prof. S.K. Joshi, former Director General, CSIR, Prof. K. Kasturirangan, former Chairman, Space Commission and MP, Rajya Sabha, Prof. V.R. Panchamukhi, former Chairman, ICSSR, Dr. Vandana Shiva, environmentalist and Shri Hari Jaisingh, eminent journalist, were among the speakers who compelled the audience to take advantage of the occasion to hear their views with rapt attention. Almost all the speakers complimented Dr. Joshi as one of the originators of the concept of “sustainable consumption”.

This book, which contains lectures of Dr. Joshi, has been compiled and edited by Dr. J.K. Bajaj and Dr. M.D. Srinivas. The book has speeches of the former Union HRD Minister that deals with steps to be taken for better scientific research and apply them for strengthening the national development programmes.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Joshi said that rather than following the West blindly, India should look into its own rich past to handle all crisis and development issues. “The thought that science has come from West is a myth. Western science is not more than 300 years old. Our science is older and fundamentally stronger. Be it medicine, mathematics or philosophy, our ancestors were way ahead of them,” he said.

He further said that the concept of immunology that we apply now for various diseases like small pox was practiced equally more than two centuries ago. Dr. Joshi said that even the Western brains are now leaving aside the reductionist approach and looking forward to the concept of wholism perpetuated across the centuries by Indian philosophers like Gautam Buddha and Rabindranath Tagore.

“Yat pinde tat brahmand, reads the Upanishad. Against the mechanistic approach of the West that tries to break into each and every existing particle to understand the same, our fundamental has always been that world is a hologram where every hole is whole in itself,” added Dr. Joshi. He called for a strong movement for a resurgent India.

He said we have made no real effort to understand our situation or that of the world around us, and have been moving according to whatever seems fashionable at any given time, or whatever is being purveyed as a panacea for the ills of all nations in the international market places.

“Presently, we are just concentrating on production and have been neglecting the creation of ideas which is equally important. We should follow value system as well,” he emphasised.

Prof M.G.K Menon said that Dr Joshi in his speeches has tried to create awareness and sensibility concerning the role of India on various context, which seems to be lost in the present scenario. He added that Dr Joshi has always stressed on the Indian value system and concept of idealism. Talking about Buddha’s spirit of accepting any assumption with proper analysis and examination, Prof. Menon said that spirit lies with Dr Joshi while reaching to any conclusion, and this concept is not there in the West. Prof. Menon said that science should become purely practical and work with the social values that have been the pillars of the Indian society.

Before the release function the book was presented at the feet of Jagadguru Shankaracharya of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham Shri Jayendra Saraswati. Jagadguru Shankaracharya sent a message that highlighted the Indian tradition of keeping jnana and vijnana together. He hoped that the book shall help Indian scientists reconnect with this tradition and begin practising vijnana in the light of jnana. Such science, that is informed by higher spiritual being, shall be beneficial both for the Indian people and mankind as a whole.

Among the prominent persons who attended the function were VHP leader Shri Ashok Singhal, RSS Sahsarkaryavah Shri Suresh Soni and others.