SPIRITUALISM – THE POSITIVE SCIENCE OF SPIRITUALITY :
Positivism is described as a system of thought which maintains that the goal of knowledge is simply to describe the phenomena experienced. It confines itself to the data of experience and excludes a priori or metaphysical speculation that cannot be verified by science or logic. I seek the vision to establish my thoughts on Spiritualism as the basis for finding the Positive Science of Spirituality. The biological existence of man is governed by The Law of Spiritualism that establishes and maintains interactions between an entity with Consciousness and Intelligence with matter and other entities that are also Conscious and Intelligent. The scientific data, observations, and empirical information that pertain to the understanding of the nature of man’s biological existence provide the explanation for man’s growth and development from the stage of a single cell to that of a very complex multicellular organism which in its essence functions as a ‘Social Group’. In other words, man from the stage of existence as a single cell develops into a Social Being, a plurality of individual cells in recurring interaction; and the interactions between cells with differentiated roles is controlled by common norms and functional unity that brings Peace, Harmony, and Tranquility to provide the benefit of survival and reproductive success to the human being who lives because of the individual functions of cells that came into association, partnership, relationship, and bonding to form the ‘Social Group’. The spiritual nature and potency of man’s living Substance establishes man as a Spiritual Being and the Spiritual Being develops into a functioning Social Being which in its reality is a Biological Community or a ‘Social Group’ of living cells. The goal for establishing The Positive Science of Spirituality is to promote Peace, Harmony, and Tranquility within the Individual and in his interactions with other Individuals so that people of all races, of all religions, of all cultures, and of all nations could live together in Peace, Harmony, and Tranquility. This goal is inspired by a thought that is expressed in Sanskrit language as: “SARVESHAM SWASTIR BHAVATU” which seeks the well-being of all people and the well-being is reflected as Peace, Harmony, and Tranquility.
THE POSITIVE SCIENCE OF SOCIOLOGY :
Auguste Comte author of ‘The Course in Positive Philosophy’( Cours de philosophie positive, 1830-42 ) explained his goal as that of a society in which both individuals and nations could live in harmony and comfort. He had originated the term ‘Sociology’ which he regarded as the method by which this harmony and well-being could be achieved. He formulated his theory of “Law of Three Stages” which visualized human intellectual and social development in three stages; 1. Theological Stage, in which the world and man’s destiny within it were explained in terms of gods, demons, spirits, and belief in the supernatural mythological beings, 2. Metaphysical Stage, in which reality is explained in abstractions such as essence, existence, substance, accident, and final cause and this transitional stage has progressed to the modern scientific stage 3. The Positive Stage, in which phenomena are explained by observation, hypothesis, and experimentation. This Stage is distinguished by an awareness of the limitations of human knowledge. Knowledge could only be relative to man’s nature as a species and to his varying social and historical situations. Comte was satisfied if he could discover laws that could explain the regular connections among phenomena. In the final Stage or Positive Stage, explanations could be based only on scientific laws discovered through experimental observation, or logic. He identified Mathematics, Astronomy, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology as scientific. He sought to complete the Positive Stage by making Sociology as the new unifying science among the “hierarchy of the sciences.” In his book, System of Positive Polity(1854) he formulated Sociology which described 1. Social Statics or the nature of Society, 2. Social Dynamics, the history of changes in Society, 3. Man – the individual, and 4. the study of morality and moral progress as the central preoccupation of human knowledge and effort, and its requirement of polity or political organization. Comte had applied the scientific method to social problems, and his Sociology could be described as the Science of Society. Sociology lays claim to the whole of human life beyond the biological level because virtually all human activities possess a social aspect. Comte believed that the scientific study of social organization would make possible a reconstitution of the social order based on principles of moral progress. Sociologists while studying human social relations or group life have developed a number of concepts in their analysis of the social aspects of human activity. The term ‘Society’ is used to refer to all the social relations and groups formed by human beings; as a singular Unit it refers to members of a particular population occupying a particular territory. ‘Social Interactions’, or the mutual responses of two or more individuals is the elementary component of all the relationships and groups constituting human society. Human interaction both creates and is governed by Social Norms or rules or imagined models of conduct present in people’s mind that guide and control their interactions. Social Norms lead to the development of ‘Social Expectations’ to which people feel an obligation to conform when they are called ‘Social Roles’, the clusters of Norms and Expectations that apply to different classes of persons. Examples of Social Roles include those of father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, old man, warrior, and teacher. A ‘Social Group’ is a plurality of individuals in recurring interaction, their interactions controlled by common ‘Social Norms’, and differentiated ‘Social Roles’. The members of a group are at least partially aware of their membership and perceive the ‘Group’ as a coherent, fairly permanent entity. Any recurring pattern of interaction among individuals playing different roles leads to the constitution of a ‘Social Structure’, or ‘Social Organization’. The branch of Sociology called ‘Social Psychology’ studies ‘Social Structures’ of interlinked ‘Social Roles’ and ‘Social Groups’ and the impact of Norms, Roles, and Groups on the individual personality. Social Psychologists study as to how individual personality is shaped through the experience of socialization, or the formation of character and outlook under the influence of the Family, the School, the Peer Group, and other Socializing Agencies. I commend Comte for his efforts to discover laws of human society that resemble the laws of nature by applying the methods of factual investigation that are used in the Physical Sciences.
THE POSITIVE SCIENCE OF SPIRITUALITY :
The Positive Science of Sociology, to establish its relevance, must investigate the nature of the human organism; the causes and effects of social or biotic interactions among individual living cells and between individual living cells and groups of cells that function together as various tissues and organ systems within the human individual. Sociology studies human customs, social structures, and social institutions as well as the effects on individuals of participation in Groups and Organization. The focus of the Positive Science of Spirituality would be that of the Biological Group or Biotic Community called human being who in reality comprises of about 100 trillion individual living cells. At the same time there are about 10 times 100 trillion microorganisms that inhabit the human gastrointestinal tract. Man is a natural host to these microbes and during the entire course of his life man seeks a mutually beneficial relationship with the microbes that reside in his body. The Positive Science of Spirituality intends to explore the social aspect of Consciousness and Intelligence that is reflected in the abilities of living cells. Spirituality Science seeks to define the underlying mechanism that develops the social connections, social interactions, and further develops association, partnership, relationship, and bonding using functional attributes such as mutual cooperation, mutual tolerance, mutual assistance, and mutual functional subservience in establishing a Social Structure or Social Organization that represents the complex human living system as a Social Being.
Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham, B.Sc., M.B.B.S.,
Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India,
M.B.B.S. Class of April, 1970.
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