All posts by mayajk

Understanding Photons

A Photon is unique; it has both wave like and particle like properties. It is the only particle in the universe which travels at the speed of light – 186,000 miles per sec. According to science it is physically impossible for anything to travel at the speed of light, because it will require infinite amount of energy to push something to achieve the speed of light. Infinite means infinite, therefore it is just impossible to achieve the speed of light for any object. At the Large Hardon Collider in CERN, Switzerland, it has been possible to achieve 99.999% of the speed of light – achieving 100% seems impossible.

This really makes you wonder- if it is impossible to achieve the speed of light how come the photons achieve this speed so easily, and to top it all, they seem to be everywhere in the universe. Anything traveling at the speed of light must have infinite energy or mass, but photons zero mass.   If you apply the tool kit of the special theory of relativity to the photon, the implications are profound and breathtaking.  Let us talk about this now

Einstein’s Theory of Special Relativity

The Theory of Special Relativity deals with Space and Time. It is based on the fact that the speed of light is fixed at c = 186,000 miles per second irrespective of the frame of reference. We all experience relative speed. Going in a car at 60mph, we look into another car traveling in the same direction at 55mph, and we see things inside the other car because the relative speed is only 5mph. We don’t have this experience with reference to the speed of light. Light is travelling at 186,000 miles per sec and suppose you are traveling in a car at 60% of the speed of light. Sitting in the car, you would logically expect the light to travel at only 40% of its usual speed, but if you take measurements you will find to your amazement that light is still travelling at 186k miles per sec. The same applies if you increase the speed of the car to 80% of speed of light or slow down to 30% of the speed of light. The speed of light is fixed at 186,000 miles per hour irrespective of the frame of reference

To explain the implications of this theory, Einstein provided a thought experiment, as it was impossible for cars or rockets to reach speeds anywhere close to the speed of light.

You are on earth and your twin brother goes into space in a rocket. You both have the top of the range atomic clocks. Your twin brother’s rocket is traveling at the speed of 0.8c. You at earth measure the speed of the light, you find it be c, your twin brother also measures the speed of light, he will also find the speed to be c. How come? The clock in the rocket slows down and his ruler in the rocket gets compressed and is much shorter so that the speed of light is still c. His spacetime framework is more compressed, but the speed of light is still c. Your twin brother returns to earth. Your clock shows he travelled for 10 years, while his clock shows he travelled for 6 years only.

Your twin brother goes on another trip and now he increases his speed to 0.9999c. He measures the speed of light and he still finds it to be c, the same as you will find on earth. His clock will be running very slowly as compared to your clock on earth. He returns after 50 days according his clock. Your clock on earth will show he has travelled for 10 years. Amazing stuff! His spacetime is extremely compressed.

Here’s an addition to the Einstein thought experiment. Your twin brother enjoys being in space. He goes back for another trip, and now his rocket travels at the speed of light c. He is tries to measure the speed of light, but he is unable to do so. Light travels at c and his rocket is also traveling at speed c, both are going in parallel to each other speed wise. To make a measurement you need light to bounce of an object, but if the rocket and light are going at the same speed, it is impossible to take this measurement. When he returns to earth, your clock shows he has travelled for 10 years, he will find his clock is at a standstill, no time has passed for him. Also, according to him he has covered no distance. You aged 10 years; he felt he did not go anywhere, both time wise and distance wise and therefore did not age at all.

Now replace the rocket and the twin brother with a photon. The photon will have the same experience as your twin brother travelling at speed of light c in a rocket. Here’s what you could say the photon “experienced” the following according to the special theory of relativity.

  • Distance travelled by photon = 0
  • Time experienced by photon = 0 or standstill
  • Energy content of photon = infinity. The formulae for the Lorenz Transformation will confirm this.

What is your experience as an observer stationed on earth tracking a photon traveling for 10 years?

  • Distance traveled by photon = 10 light years
  • Time travelled by photon = 10 years
  • Mass of photon = 0
  • Speed of light = c

According to the photon, it feels it is at a standstill not covering any distance. However, the observer feels the photon is covering a large distance traveling at the speed of light. How do we interpret this information? Based on the information we have understood, we can make the following important conclusions

  1. The photon travels only in the presence of the observer. If there is no observer, then the photon remains at a standstill. An observer is a prerequisite for the photon to travel. In our earlier discussions we have mentioned that the only observer in this universe is the Atma, which is the underlying reality of you, me and every living being. So, whenever a photon comes in the presence of Awareness in any mind – your mind, my mind or the cosmic mind, the photon becomes conscious and then and only then we are aware of the photon. It is this photon which zips around at the speed of light. The perception must take place in the mind first, only then it is possible for the photon to be observed in the physical world. It is this basic reason, why the perception process as taught by Vedanta is the only correct way to understand the phenomenon.

 

  1. From the photon’s perspective, it is at standstill in time and covers no distance. If time does not move for the photon, it must be outside time and it must be beyond the spacetime framework. If it was within the spacetime framework, time for the photon must change. What does this really mean? Anything beyond time must be in a dormant condition; it could also be called un-manifest condition. What is the “un-manifest” condition? According to Vedanta, it is in its potential form, just like a tree is in an un-manifest, potential condition within a seed. The physical tree still has not come out, but the tree is there in a potential form in the seed. So only a tree will manifest from this seed and nothing else. The photon is also in the same potential form. What potential form does the photon represent? The universe is the “potential” within the photon.

 

  1. Where does the photon reside in its un-manifest condition? Since the un-manifest photon is beyond the space time frame work and as we explained earlier that the Atma is always beyond time. It is only logical conclude that the un-manifest photon exists within Atma, which is unchanging, limitless, without boundaries. Since Atma is present in everyone, including in you, therefore the un-manifest photon is present within you, within your true reality of Atma. You, as an individual person, do not feel or realize this, because, like everyone else, you are ignorant of your own true nature.

 

  1. We saw earlier that according to the observer, the energy level or mass of the photon is zero, but according to the photon, the energy level of the photon is infinite. This photon with infinite energy is lying dormant within the Observer or Atma in an un-manifest condition. Now there is no infinite energy, there is only a potential for infinite energy. Whenever the Observer/Atma has the desire to view the universe, this un-manifest photon will come into the observer’s mind, this photon will become conscious and then it will manifest to become the universe we see around us. This manifested universe will have infinite energy.

We know from studying Vedanta that Atma/Brahman is the underlying reality of you and of the universe. It is the Observer of your mind and it is beyond the space time framework. We have also analyzed that from the photon’s point of view, the photon remains in an un-manifest condition in your Atma. When this photon enters your mind, it becomes conscious and manifests itself.

 

Energy which makes up this Universe

Photons, from their own standpoint, are in an un-manifest condition. They are in their potential state. The potential form of the photon represents the universe; it is not one photon, but a collection of all the photons in the universe.  A good analogy would be that the potential form is like software code that represents all aspects of the universe. Just like the software needs a CPU to manifest itself, the potential form of the photon needs a mind to manifest itself.

When the un-manifest photon meets our minds, it manifests itself and becomes a Vritti, which is like a mental wave within the mind. These mental waves or vrittis are the same as the probability waves which are explained by quantum physics, they are so similar in their functionality. We know from quantum mechanics that the probability waves collapse in the presence of the observing system. In the same way the mental waves of the photon collapse in the presence of Atma, which is the observing system in our minds. Maya Shakti then projects this collapsed wave function as the visible physical universe we see around us.

Put in simple terms, the universe is a manifestation of just the photon. In its un-manifest form, the photon had a potential for infinite energy. This infinite energy is now unleashed into the entire universe.

Types of Energy in the Universe

As we have seen, the photon is the only particle in the universe which travels at the speed of light.  If we apply the theory of special relativity to the photon, the photon will feel it does not travel any distance, that time is at a standstill and that it has an infinite amount of energy. In the presence of the observer or from the point of view of the observer, the picture is very different, infinite energy is distributed all over the world and photons are zooming around the universe at the speed of light.

The photon has an infinite amount of energy, but this finite universe can use only a finite amount of energy. You as an observer can only see a part of the universe and therefore only a finite amount of energy is required. I am guessing that the unused energy of the photon remains in an un-manifest condition.

It must be clearly understood that the only energy available in the universe is the energy provided by photons.

A photon in a wave form is also known as an Electromagnetic Energy Wave (EMV). The known spectrum of light starts from Radio waves (300 Khz) to Gamma rays (3 x 1021) Hz. This spectrum of energy covers the universe. It is the source for everything. All objects are made up of energy and this energy comes with the manifestation of the photon in the presence of the observer or Atma.

The energy described above is the physical or visible energy. Keeping the size of the universe and estimating the number of galaxies, cosmologists have estimated the composition of the universe in this way –

  • Dark energy – 79%
  • Dark matter – 26%
  • Visible Matter – 5%

Only 5% of the energy is used to create the visible galaxies. We must note that 73% of the visible universe is made of hydrogen, 23% Helium and 2% is made of the remaining elements. The cosmologist still has no clue what this dark energy/matter is. They have not seen it nor identified it. It’s just an assumption to explain how the energy needed to fuel the expansion of the universe is “created”.

Dark energy, Dark matter and the Visible Matter, all have the roots in the infinite energy source of the photons in the un-manifested Atma.

Understanding Motion

Motion is part of our daily life. We see motion or movement everywhere. What causes this motion? How does this motion happen? You will be surprised, it is completely opposite to our conventional understanding.

Frame of Reference:

If there are two cars next to each other and travelling in the same direction at 60 mph, they will not experience any motion with respect to each other. They will feel they are stationery. They will feel motion if they pass a stationery person standing on the roadside. If one driver is driving at 60 mph and another person at 55 mph. They will only experience a speed of 5 mph. To explain this, physics teaches us that there are two frames of references. One frame of reference is the observer and other frame of reference is the object. If both the reference frames move at the same speed, there will be no relative motion, if they are not moving at the same speed, motion will be experienced.

Motion has a knack of playing tricks with us. There are two stationery trains in a platform. You are sitting in one of them. The other train starts moving, why do we feel that we are moving, and the other train is stationery. The observer frame is stationery and the object frame is moving, but we feel that the object frame is stationery and the observer frame is moving with respect with the object frame. We look through the other side window and then realize we are stationery and the other train is moving. If there were no windows on the other side, we would really think we are moving. If there is no other frame of reference except the other train, we would really think we are moving. The conclusion is that if there are only two frames of references, then both the frame of references thinks they are moving with respect with the other reference frame.

Apply this logic to our daily life. We are walking towards some trees. Are we really walking towards the trees or we are stationery and the tree are coming towards us? The idea we are stationery and trees are coming moving towards us is a possibility based on the frame of references we discussed for the trains at the platform. But can this be true? Yes, it is true, and it is the only truth. It is difficult to digest this, how can the trees move, they seem so stationery.

The teachings of Vedanta can help us in this regard. We have seen in the other articles at our website, that the Observer, which is Awareness is within each one of us. This Observer is outside the spacetime fabric and is always t = 0. This Observer is not the body or mind and is always stationery and never moves. It cannot move because it is outside the spacetime fabric. If the Observer frame is always fixed, it is only logical that the trees are moving closer to us to give a sense of motion. But how can the trees and other such fixed objects in the universe move? As we have discussed in our article ‘Life is Living Wave’ that there is a fully functioning subtle universe made up of mental waves which is operating in the mind. These subtle mental waves are then projected out there as the physical world.

Based on this, there are subtle waveforms of the tree in our mind. In some way (which is discussed later), the subtle waveform of the tree moves closer to the fixed Observer in the mind. When this happens, the projected physical tree will now be closer to the Observer. Since the physical tree has moved to be closer to the fixed observer, there is a sense of motion or movement of the tree. We do not feel this, we feel the tree is fixed and we have moved closer to the tree. This is exactly the same way you feel your fixed train is moving as compared to the other train in the platform. This is the grand deception of motion, played by Maya shakti.

The Observer frame is always stationery and the movement of the object frame gives the impression of motion for the Observer frame. So, how does the object frame really move? What is the cause for the object frame to move? To understand this, we need to discuss the Einstein theory of special reactivity.

Theory of Special Relativity:

If you understand the Einstein theory of special relativity, you will see that there is a connection between motion and time. We just saw if one driver is driving at 60 mph and other person at 55 mph, they will experience a relative speed of 5 mph. We don’t have this experience with reference to the speed of light. Light is travelling at 186,000 miles per sec and suppose you are traveling in a car at 60% of the speed of light. Sitting in the car, you would logically expect the light to travel at only 40% of its usual speed, but if you take measurements you will find to your amazement that light is still travelling at 186k miles per sec. The same applies if you increase the speed of the car to 80% of speed of light or slow down to 30% of the speed of light. The speed of light is fixed at 186,000 miles per hour irrespective of the frame of reference.

What has happened is that time has slowed down so that light still covers 186K miles in one second. Since time has slowed down, the space of 186K miles will be smaller as compared to earlier. The space is still 186k, but the measuring ruler has shrunk, so the space measurement is still 186K. Amazing but true. If you increase the speed of the car to 80% of speed of light, time will slow down further, and space will further contract. If you now slow down to 30% of the speed of light, space will now expand. All this is done to ensure that the speed of light is a constant at 186,000 miles per sec. This expansion and contraction of spacetime also happens even when walking or running. However, the speed at which you walk, or run is so slow when compared to the speed of light that you are unable to notice, but the changes to the space time framework are always occurring.

  • This mean motion and time are interconnected. As speed of motion goes up, time slows down. If you reach the speed of light, time will not move, it will be fixed.
  • Suppose Person A is sitting in a chair, Person B is walking, Person C is running, Person D is cycling, and Person E is driving a car; all of them are moving at different speeds; this would mean that each of them will have their own separate spacetime framework.
  • From the above, it would seem the time clock of each moving person is different. This means that the atoms are vibrating differently for each person. If atoms are vibrating differently, the object makeup will be different. In other words, each person is not only having a separate spacetime framework, but all the objects in that spacetime framework are different.

Time and Motion

From the theory of special relativity, we can conclude that the motion and time are interconnected. When motion speed increases, then the time slows down. It seems motion comes first and then the time slow down. Motion is the cause and the slowdown of time is the effect. Is this the correct interpretation? I don’t think so. Motion is gross, we see motion everywhere. In contrast time is subtle – you cannot see it, touch it or feel it. Time is present in the mind as a mental wave. This wave has the power to create Time. It is quite difficult for us to understand or visualize the composition of this waveform, but one thing is certain that Time is subtle and therefore it is a waveform and is present in everyone’s mind.

Vedanta teaches us that subtle mental waves comes first, and the subtle waveforms is the cause for the gross world around us. The subtle waveform projects the physical world out there. If you apply this reasoning, time must come first, and the time waveform is the cause for motion. So, the correct way to interpret the connection between motion and time is that when time slows down, then motion is created.

When time slows down, it is only logical to expect the objects would be closer to the Observer. The physics equation s = v*t will support this. When time t is a smaller value, the distance s will be smaller, meaning it is closer to the Observer. There is motion of the object by slowing of time. Before the slowdown of time, the objects were at a certain location and by slowing down of time, the objects have moved closer to the fixed Observer. The objects have moved, meaning there is motion. However, we feel the opposite, the objects are fixed, and the Observer has moved. This is exactly the way we feel when the other train moves in the platform. We are fixed, and the other train is moving, but we feel the other train is fixed and we are moving.

So, time controls motion and not the other way around. Time is the cause for motion. Increase or decrease the time factor in the mind, the resulting motion (or speed) of the objects will change in the physical world. Time is also the cause for the spacetime fabric expansion or contraction. Increase or decrease the time, space time fabric will also expand or contract. This corroborates the Einstein theory of special relativity.

Next time you are walking or running, just imagine you are fixed at your location, but the objects around you are moving closer to you. True and amazing.

Just a quick word about acceleration. The same logic also applies to acceleration. Acceleration is a type of motion, so here also time controls the motion. In the earlier discussion, the time slowed down by a fixed amount and this resulted in motion at a fixed speed. But in acceleration, time slows down by squaring itself, this results in motion being accelerated. So time is king, it controls both velocity and acceleration.

Construction of the Universe

Millions and millions (maybe countless) of objects make up the universe. So how are these objects put together to create the universe we see around us.

We will try and understand the construction of the universe by studying a typical scene we see every day. For example, we see a series of trees from two different location. The following table gives the details of the trees we are seeing

Location A Location B
Tree 1 100 ft 600 ft
Tree 2 300 ft 800 ft
Tree 3 500 ft 1000 ft
Tree 4 1000 ft 1500 ft

 

From Location A, you can see 4 trees at different distances. Location B is 500 feet back, so the same 4 trees will be 500 further away. There is nothing complex about this, we see this type of scene every day. We see objects at different distances from us daily. We are so used to seeing space in terms of distance. Doing this hides all the underlying mysteries of this universe.

So, let us take a different approach, let us look at space in terms of time. Einstein taught us that space and time are the same thing and he coined the term spacetime. Things become interesting and complex when you look at the universe in terms of time. Let us look at these trees in terms of time taken by light to reach us from the trees. We know light travels at 186,000 miles/sec. Even though the trees are not very far, light will take some time to reach us. See below the results

Location A Location B
Tree 1 0.10 µs 0.60 µs
Tree 2 0.30 µs 0.80 µs
Tree 3 0.50 µs 1.0 µs
Tree 4 1.0 µs 1.5 µs

Note: µs = microseconds = 10-6 seconds

If the distance between the tree and you is zero, light will take zero seconds to reach us. This would mean you would see the most current version of the tree. I like to call this the ‘now’ tree. The tree we see at 100 feet is a 0.1 µs younger version of the tree as compared to the now version. This is because light takes 0.1 µs to reach us, so what we see is not the ‘now’ version but a 0.1 µs younger version of the tree. Tree 3 at 500 feet is a 0.5 µs younger version of the tree. Extrapolating this, the moon we see is a 3 sec younger version as compared to the ‘now’ moon. It takes light 3 sec to reach us from the moon. The sun in the sky is an 8 min younger sun as compared to the ‘now’ sun. If a distant planet is 1 million light years away, then that planet will be 1 million years younger than what it is ‘now’. None of the objects we see in the physical universe out there is a ‘now’ object, they are all ‘memory’ or dated objects. In terms of placement, the closer the object is to you, the less dated it is and the objects which are further away are much more dated.

Einstein in his theory of relativity mentioned the presence of a spacetime fabric. Different objects are placed on the fabric depending upon how much time it takes light to reach you from these objects. If light takes less time, these objects will be closer to you on the spacetime fabric and if light takes a longer time, those objects will be further away on the spacetime fabric. In the tree example, the light from tree 1 takes 0.1 µs, so it is placed much closer to you on the spacetime fabric as compared to tree 4, which takes 1.0 µs. Light takes 8 mins from the sun, so it is placed 8 min away on the spacetime fabric. In the same way all the different objects are placed appropriately on the spacetime fabric.

So, where does the spacetime fabric start and end. The only logical starting place is You. We are talking about light reaching you from different objects, so you or your location is the critical starting point. This is the t = 0 for the spacetime fabric. Let us look at this in a different way. In the current example, location B is 500 feet away from Location A. If you were standing at location B, light will 0.6 µs to reach you from tree 1. If you move to location A, which is 500 feet closer, light will take 0.10 µs to reach you. If you are standing at tree 1, light will take zero seconds to reach you. This also shows that the spacetime fabric must start with your location.

The end of the spacetime fabric will be the longest distance you can see. If you are indoors, the spacetime fabric will end at the walls of your house because you cannot see anything beyond the walls. Outdoors it will depend upon what you are seeing. If you are seeing the stars, the spacetime fabric will cover a long distance into space. So, the spacetime fabric keeps changing depending up on the scene you are seeing.

Person 1 at Location A and Person 2 at Location B

There are two people, person 1 is standing at location A and person 2 at location B. They are looking at the same trees but from different distances. They are looking at the same trees, but are they seeing the same version of the tree? The answer is no, they are not seeing the same version of the tree. Person 1 is seeing the 0.1 µs younger version of tree 1, while person 2 is seeing the 0.6 µs younger version of tree 1. The age difference between the two versions is 0.5 µs. This difference is very small, but it must be understood that the two versions of tree 1 are not the same. The same applies to tree 2, 3 and 4 and in fact to every object in the universe.

It seems Person 1 at location A has a spacetime fabric with his own version of objects. Person 2 at location B even though looking at the same objects has a completely different spacetime fabric with different versions of objects. We have seen earlier that the start point for spacetime fabric is You. So, person 1 has his own spacetime fabric with his own version of objects. Person 2 also has a different spacetime fabric with a different version of objects.

It is breathtaking to conclude that every living being in this universe creates their own spacetime fabric and place different versions of objects on this spacetime fabric. It must be understood that spacetime fabric comes from the mind and is a creation of the mind.

Person 1 moves form Location A to Location B

Suppose Person 1, moves 500 feet away from location A to location B looking at the same trees. What happens? At location A, this person was seeing the 0.10 µs version of the tree 1, but from location B, this person sees the 0.60 µs version of the same tree. It is same tree, but different version of the tree. What happened? It is a physical tree out there, how did it change its version? Who changed the tree version? Did someone uproot the old version and replace it with the new version? This not only applies to tree 1, but all the objects which are being viewed along with the tree. If person 1 moves 10 feet back, this person will now a see a different version of all the objects. This means any movement forward or backwards by this person or any person will always result in a different version of all the objects being viewed. The object version is continuously undergoing change. How to explain this continuous change? Can Science explain this? I do not think science has any explanation. So, what is solution? Vedanta has a clear-cut and correct explanation. Vedanta has always maintained that there is no physical world out there, it is only a projection of the mind. The mind projects the physical world. It is not like a projector and a screen. The mind itself becomes the physical world. Your mind is the physical world.

In the articles at our website ‘Understanding the Mind series’ and ‘Life is Really a Wave’, we have given a detailed explanation about how the mind functions, how the mind creates and projects the physical world.

For our current discussion understanding the role of time is important. Time must be subtle – you cannot see it, touch it or feel it. Vedanta teaches us anything subtle must be part of the mind. Everything which is present in the mind is made up of mental waves or Vrittis. So, Time is present in the mind as a mental wave. This wave has the power to create Time. It is quite difficult for us to understand or visualize the composition of this waveform, but one thing is certain that Time is subtle and therefore it is a waveform and is present in everyone’s mind. Vedanta also teaches us that all the objects in the world must have a subtle form and this form is present in the mind as mental waves or Vrittis. The time waveform combines with each object to create a combined time object waveform. The time factor is now added to the object. It is like a mathematical waveform with time as a variable. If you think about it, this superimposed waveform will now provide a history or timeline of the object. Since Time has been superimposed on the object waveform, the new waveform will have the ‘potential’ to show the object in all it stages of growth from its birth to right now. The object with the historical time line is present in the Vritti in its ‘potential’ form.

Let us how this work for tree 1 when person 1 is viewing from location 1. There is tree vritti or waveform in our mind and this waveform superimposes with the time waveform to give a combined tree 1/time wave form. This combined waveform has to potential to take up any version of tree 1 from its birth to now. Since the tree is 100 feet away, the combined time/tree 1 waveform takes up the 0.1 µs version of the tree. When this 0.1 µs version tree waveform meets with Awareness it collapses. When this waveform collapses, the 0.1 µs version of the tree is projected out in its physical form and it is placed at 100 feet on the spacetime fabric. In the same way, all the other time/objects waveform in mind collapse in the presence of the Awareness and the correct time version of each object is placed on the spacetime fabric.

Now person 1 moves to location B to see the same trees. All the trees are now further away. Here again, the time vritti combines with tree 1 wave form. This combined waveform has the potential to take up any version of tree 1 from its birth to now. Since the tree is 600 feet away, the tree takes up the 0.6 µs version of the tree. This 0.6 µs version tree waveform collapses in the presence of the Awareness. When this waveform collapses, the tree is projected out in its physical form and it is placed at 600 feet on the spacetime fabric.

We have been talking about a single tree, the outdoor scene is complex with so many different objects at different distances. If you put all this in the time scale, the processing of the scene is not easy. Depending how far the object is, the correct time version of the object must be selected. This must be done for every object in the scene. If we move forward or back, or if we see another scene, the full process must be repeated. It is not easy to fathom how all this processing is taking place in the mind. It seems very difficult.

Is there an easier way to understand this complex process? Yes, I believe there is a map of the entire universe pre-installed in the cosmic mind. Depending upon the persons location, the relevant sub-portion of this map will show up in the individual mind. It is exactly like Google Maps. The entire map is available, but depending upon our location, only that local map will show up. If we move around, the map will adjust to the new location. The pre-installed universe map works exactly in the same way. The objects in this universe map will be pre-treated for the correct time version depending upon the distance of these objects from you. This universe map is dynamic and updated instantaneously. For example, you cut a branch of the tree, the universe map will update itself immediately. The next person who sees the tree, will see the missing branch.

To understand the complexity of the universe, it maybe a good idea to start looking at space in terms of time and not distance. This will highlight that the version of the objects keeps changing with our movement. It will also give a feeling that we are the starting point of the spacetime fabric and we are projecting our own world, which is different from others. Oh! What a feeling.

Expansion of the Universe

Does the universe expand? Science tells us the universe is expanding. Why is the universe expanding? How fast the universe is expanding? Science is not very sure about these questions. Using powerful telescopes, they have watched the movement of different planets and galaxies and noticed the expansion is uneven. Some places the expansion is faster and other places the expansion is slower. There is no explanation about this uneven expansion. Looking at some far away planets and looking at their rate of expansion, they have come up with a Hubble constant. The Hubble constant states that the rate of expansion is about 71 kilometers per second per megaparsec. A megaparsec is a million parsecs, or about 3.3 million light-years. It means objects 3.3 million light years away are expanding at 71 kilometers per second. This is based on observation only. If you understand the fundamentals of the universe expansion, it is possible to calculate and prove the Hubble Constant. We will be doing this in this article. 

So, what are the fundamentals of this expansion? Understanding the spacetime fabric is the key to understand this expansion. We have discussed the spacetime fabric in other arrticles. We have seen that the individual person or the observer location is the start point for the spacetime fabric. We can call this the t = 0 for the spacetime fabric. We have seen that the spacetime fabric is a time-based fabric in which different objects are placed depending upon the time light takes to reach the observer from these objects. 

What is the maximum size of the spacetime fabric?  Science tells us that the age of the universe is 13.7 billion years old. This is the big bang moment. Light reaching us from the big bang moment would be the outer edge of the spacetime fabric. Light will take 13.7 billion light years to reach us from this big bang moment. This is the outer edge because there was no universe before the big bang. So, the size of the universe: 13.7 billion light years or 12.9 x 1025 meters. One light year is the amount of distance light travels in one year, which is = 9.46 × 1015 meters

Is this spacetime fabric expanding? Definitely, yes. How much? Let us try and understand this. If you assume the universe is 13.7 billion years old ‘right now’. After one second, the age of the universe will be 13.7 billion years + 1 sec. Light must now must travel an additional 186,000 miles to reach us, which means the size of the universe has grown by 186,000 miles. After 10 seconds, the size of the universe would increase by 186,000 x 10 = 1,860,000 miles. After one year from now, the size of the universe will increase by 1 light year. 1 light year is the distance light travels in one year.

From the above, we can conclude that the rate of expansion of the Universe = 1 light year per year.

If you can imagine the spacetime fabric as an elastic rubber sheet, starting from the start point t=0 (which means you) to the edge of the universe. The end at the observer’s side is fixed it is always the t = 0; the other end which is the outer edge of the universe is being pulled outwards. This elastic space time fabric is expanding by 186,000 miles every second. It is expanding at the speed of light every second, which is one light year every year. As time flows, the expansion of the spacetime fabric will continue at the speed of light.

It must be understood that only the edge of the universe is expanding at the speed of light, anything in between will not expand at the same speed, it will be proportional to the distance from the observer. Using the rubber sheet example, if you pull the outer edge by a certain distance, the inner parts will not be stretched by the same amount. The stretching will be more at the outer edges and it will be much less as you move inwards to the other side. This means that the rate of outward expansion of galaxies, stars etc., would really depend upon how far these galaxies are far away from the observer. The observer is t=0. Stars close by will expand more slowly, as compared to stars which are further away. This is because the space time fabric for the stars nearby will stretch less as compared to the stars which are further away. 

Based on our understanding of the stretching of the space time fabric, let us try and calculate the Hubble Constant

  • The size of the universe is 13.7 billion light years and it expands by 1 light year every year
  • The object 3.3 million light years away from us, it will expand by 3.3x 106/13.7x 109 = .240 x 10-3 light year per year
  • 1 light year = 9.46 × 1012 Km
  • Therefore .240 x 10-3 light year per year = 2.27 x 109 Km per year.
  • 1 year = 3.15 x 107 sec
  • 2.27 x 109 Km per year = 71 km /sec

The above calculation shows that the Hubble constant is indeed 71 km/sec. We have just proven what has been observed by science. Since the calculation of the Hubble constant is accurate, it only shows that the expansion model explained in this section is correct and accurate. Science, please make a note and accept this expansion model for the universe.  

Functioning of the Mind

We have seen in other articles Awareness is a mix of subject, object and intelligence. Self-Awareness, has the Self and the 3 parts of Awareness.

In the mind because of Ignorance these 4 components are sitting in different departments. The Intelligence is sitting in the Buddhi, the Objects part is sitting in the Manas, the Subject part is sitting in the Sakshi and the Self or ‘I-ness’ is sitting in the Ahamkara. These four parts are separated, but there is a natural tendency for these 4 parts to combine to create Self-Awareness. There is a mutual attraction to come together so that they can achieve it original status of being Self-Awareness. When the subject, object and intelligence are separated out, the self feels incomplete, it feels inadequate and it wants to feel full and complete. The only way self can feel the completeness when the subject, object and intelligence combine into one entity.

In the mind this can happen only when the subject (in sakshi), objects (in manas) and the intelligence (in buddhi) combine to create Awareness. Only when these 3 parts combine, Awareness is generated. The Ahamkara then links with this Awareness to complete the feeling of Self-Awareness, which is the original state of fullness and non-duality which we have discussed earlier. When this is achieved the feeling of completeness and fullness (Ananda) is there but the problem is that it does not last very long. It is momentary. It lasts as long as one thought last. When the second thought pops up, the full process has to be repeated. We know we have countless thoughts every day, the same cycle is repeated with every thought. We have a momentary bliss after every thought when there is unity between buddhi, manas, sakshi and ahamkara. This bliss or Ananda will break up when the second thought pops up. This is a never ending cycle.

The Mind is complex and understanding how an experience or thought occurs in the mind is not easy. One thing, however, is clear – that the Buddhi, Manas, Sakshi and Ahamkara must combine to create an experience or thought. We will now undertake a step by step analysis on a how a typical experience is created in the mind

  • Step 1: Activity in the Manas
  • Step 2: Buddhi Knows
  • Step 3: Ahamkara Interferes
  • Step 4: Sakshi Witnesses

Step 1: Activity in the Manas

Manas is the home of the Objects and it has the Power of Known (Objects). This power is a very powerful part of the Power of Awareness, which has the ability of becoming any object you want to experience. This power has unlimited capacity, but unfortunately it is limited by the human mind. The human mind is limited what it can experience by the 5 sense organs – eyes, ears, tongue, nose and skin.

Even within these sense areas, the human mind has limitations. For example, the human ear can hear sounds up to only 20Khz of frequency. This is limited. We know other animals can manage a much wider spectrum. Our eyes can only see the ‘light part’ of the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum. There are species who handle other parts of the EM spectrum. In other words, there is a much bigger universe than what we can experience with our 5 senses.

If there are gross or physical sense organs, then there must also be subtle sense organs. These subtle sense organs are present in the Manas. The Manas representing the subtle body can be divided into the following abilities and powers:

  • Sense Organs – ‘Input’ organs connecting to the external Sense Objects
  • Eyes
  • Ears
  • Nose
  • Tongue
  • Skin
  • Organs of Action – ‘Output’ Organs
  • Hands
  • Feet
  • Talking
  • Reproduction
  • Evacuation
  • Antahkarana – Internal Organs: These are organs which operate at the sub-conscious level. Organs like, heart, liver, stomach, muscles etc. There is no direct control over these organs but they function at the sub-conscious level.

The sense organs are our connection to the external world. The external world of vision, sound, smell, taste and touch makes its presence known in the manas and each sense object is being connected to its respective sense organs. If you want see a tree, the subtle version of the tree will be present in the subtle version of the eye (in the manas). If you want to listen to music, the subtle version of the music will be present in the subtle version of the ear (in the manas). Whatever we experience in the external world is first present in the manas in its subtle form.

There is no denying that there is a lot of activity taking place in the Manas. All the sense organs, and the internal organs are continuously sending information into the Manas. It is indeed crowded with the different types of information. This information is in some type of wave form. Every object in the sense organs has a wave form representation. All these signals can become physical objects with the Power of Known which is available in the Manas. The problem is that the Manas does not know or understand what these input wave forms represent. This is because these wave forms are covered by Ignorance, in fact a better way to put it is that the building blocks of these object wave forms is Ignorance. Every wave form entering the sense organs in the manas is built in Ignorance. It may sound strange, but it is true that Ignorance is source of the entire subtle universe.

If Manas had the knowledge what these input waveforms represented, it could then create the required objects. At this stage the Manas does not know or understand any of the input signals. Manas has the power to become the objects, but it does not have the power to remove the ignorance from these input signals which are present in the sense and internal organs.

The Manas needs help in the removal of Ignorance.

Step 2: Buddhi Knows

The Buddhi is the intelligent part of the mind and it has the Power of Knowing. The awesome power of knowing, which is part of Awareness. It has the ability to know anything and everything in this this universe and beyond. It has that decoding power. The Power of Knowing is within Buddhi. If any object wave form comes in the presence of the Buddhi, the Buddhi would know what that object wave form represented.

The Buddhi is like the Central Processing Unit (CPU) of the human being. The input signal comes to the CPU to be processed. In the same way, the input signal from the Manas comes to the Buddhi to be processed. We saw that the input wave forms coming from the Manas are covered by ignorance, the Buddhi peels out this ignorance and reveals its actual identity. The object wave form with ignorance transforms into an object wave form with knowledge. This wave form with knowledge is a mental wave form and in Vedanta it is called a Vritti.

We can say that Buddhi is the most powerful CPU with parallel processing capability. It can handle so many different input stimuli from the five sense organs and also from the internal organs simultaneously. It removes the ignorance for each and every waveform which is present in the Manas.

It awaits further action from Ahamkara (ego) on the some of the object vrittis (not all) which have come from the 5 sense organs. In many of the routine vrittis from sense organs and all the vrittis from the internal organs, the buddhi knows what action to take. Over time, it has learned what action is to be taken, so it can undertake these actions automatically. These actions can also be described as sub-conscious, the actions which you are not aware of but which continue to happen almost automatically.

Buddhi is a self-learning CPU, which learns and knows how to handle different actions. Like the CPU it is connected to output devices, the Buddhi is also connected to output devices like the five organs of action – hand, feet, talking etc. and also all the internal organs.

Since Buddhi has many different powers and capabilities, let us discuss some of the key powers:

Power of Cognition or Sensation: This is power of knowing what is available in the sense organs. This is the power which we have described earlier of changing the object wave form of ignorance to the object wave form of knowledge.

Power of Imagination: Day dreaming or creative/positive thinking are good examples. We are involved in this on a regular basis, where we can construct an imaginary vision for ourselves. This power is present in the buddhi.

Power of Logic: Power of comparing and contrasting, drawing interferences, discussion, etc. So we can say that the power of logic is within buddhi. If you see smoke on the hill, you conclude there is fire. A wide range of logic ‘circuitry’ is available in the buddhi, which we use on a daily basis.

Power of Will: This is the power to execute desires, wishes and ideals and is available within the Buddhi and the Ahamkara. It is originally within Ahamkara, but the Buddhi also learns this skill over time.

Power of Memory: This is where all the things learned and experienced are stored. This storage is also ‘Citta’. Next time a similar vritti is presented, Memory knows what the vritti represents.

 

Step 3: Ahamkara Interferes

After the Buddhi processes the object wave form of ignorance from the Manas to a known mental wave form (called Vritti), this object vritti is now presented to the Ahamkara.

Ahamkara means ‘I-Maker’, it is the sense of ‘I-ness’ within you. It is not the Self in Self-Awareness, but it is a vritti and thinks it is the ‘self’. It masquerades as the Self and Ahamkara is just a mental a wave form, ‘I’ or ’self’.  If Ahamkara was the Self, it would never feel incomplete, inadequate and get only momentary doses of bliss and happiness – it would always feel complete and have continuous Ananda.

The vrittis, from the 5 senses and also the citta, the memory bank of past events, is presented to the Ahamkara. You have object vrittis coming in from your senses. The Ahamkara now has to interact with these vrittis. We saw the Buddhi could handle parallel processing by handling multiple inputs at the same time. The interaction between Ahamkara and these wide range of object vrittis happens only one at a time. You can only have one experience at a time. The Ahamkara interacts only with one vritti at a time and it gives ‘my-ness’ to the vritti .

How does Ahamkara choose between the different vrittis which are available. There are two ways this can happen

  1. Ahamkara chooses a Vritti
  2. A Vritti chooses Ahamkara

Ahamkara Chooses a Vritti: This is a willful action, where ahamkara deliberately chooses one of the object vrittis for further action. It is a noisy street, but you stop to admire a beautiful flower. Your ahamkara did not focus on all the noise, but deliberately chose the flower vritti to admire. This is a complicated process and many factors can make Ahamkara choose one of the vrittis available.

There are many instances, where Ahamkara does not choose any of the available vrittis but instructs the Buddhi to locate another particular vritti which will meet its current requirements and desires. For example, you have a desire to eat ice-cream but there is no ice cream in the house. The buddhi then instructs the manas to go to the car and drive to an ice cream shop to satisfy this desire.

A Vritti Chooses Ahamkara: It must be understood that each of the vrittis are conscious and have a life of their own. We have seen that most of these object vrittis are provided by the sense organs. These sense organs have their own likes and dislikes. Eyes want to see beautiful things, the tongue to taste delicious food, and so on. We all have had experiences where our sense organs have ‘hijacked’ the Ahamkara and ‘as though’ forced it to take a particular action against its will. The doctor has told us that any more sweets can be harmful to our health. We are fully aware of this, but still when we see a delicious sweet our hands reach out against our will and we put it in our mouths. In such instances the vritti dominates and manipulates ahamkara to undertake an action.

Vritti Modification: It is very important to understand that whenever Ahamkara interacts with an Object Vritti, it will modify the object vritti according to its likes and dislikes. In Vedanta this is called Raga and Dvesha. We have seen earlier that Ahamkara is also a mental waveform and when it interacts or superimposes with the object vritti the resultant vritti is a vritti modified by Raga and Dvesha. If you like something you will modify the vritti differently than when you dislike something.

The bottom line is that the Ahamkara modifies the incoming vritti according to its own disposition. If Ahamkara is feeling angry, it will react to the vritti differently than it would if it is feeling happy and peaceful. Ahamkara or ego adds a personal touch to the interacting object vritti. In fact, it also adds the ‘I-ness’ to the vritti. Ahamkara can become attached or addicted to certain vrittis because they give it momentary happiness and it wants to repeat these moment of happiness.

Step 4: Sakshi Witnesses

This is the last step in the process. We have seen that for Self-Awareness you need the following 4 elements.

Self-Awareness = Object + Intelligence + Self + Subject

We have seen in this step by step process that the object waveform in the Manas combines with the Intelligence in the Buddhi and the modification of this object vritti by Ahamkara or ego. To have awareness, the only missing element is the power of knower (Subject). The Subject or Sakshi provides this power of knower.

When the modified object vritti from Ahamkara combines with the Subject or Sakshi, you have something ‘magical’ – you have awareness of the experience. You have awareness of the experience because all the elements of awareness are now present. Till we reached step 4, the object viewed was as a waveform or vritti. When the last missing element of the subject came in contact with the object vritti, the waveform collapses to create the experience of gross objects around you. The Sakshi or subject is the one which witnesses this experience.

 

This 4 step process is how the mind functions for all experiences. Let us discuss some examples to reinforce this concept.

Example 1 – Scientist at Work: A scientist is working hard to prove a hypothesis. His current level of knowledge is far from the ultimate goal. The object vrittis of the current level of knowledge pass through the manas and buddhi. The scientist’s ahamkara interacts with this object vrittis and modifies the vrittis according to what the scientist thinks are the best way to solve the problem. When the subject or sakshi collapses this updated wave form, the scientist will find that he has gained more knowledge but the goal is not yet in sight. The scientist keeps repeating this cycle, till one day, the ahamkara modifies the object vritti to match the vritti for proving the hypothesis. When this object vritti collapses, the scientist has gained the knowledge to prove his hypothesis.

 

Example 2 – Sub-conscious Driving: When we are driving, many times our mind is engrossed in some thought, but when the traffic light changes to red, we automatically stop the car. We (at least I do) sometime wonder how this happens. The red light vritti from the manas is presented to the buddhi. Over the years of driving, the buddhi has learned that one stops at the red light. So even without the involvement of the ahamkara, the buddhi on its own instructs the output device (the legs) to stop the car. The buddhi is always self-learning and has the ability to manage the day to day activity at a sub-conscious level while the ego is not involved.

Example 3Ahamkara Interpretation: The Ahamkara or ego is constantly modifying the incoming object vrittis and the resultant vritti is not the same as the original vritti. The original intention is lost. This modification is done by Raga and Dvesha. Desires of the Ahamkara is usually the driving force for Raga and Dvesha. When this updated vritti collapses in the presence of the Sakshi or Subject, the resultant experience has two components – the original representation of the object plus addition of the raga and dvesha. This addition by the ego is what we call emotions. Human being have a wide range of emotions and this is always the resultant of when desire interacts with thought.

 

Analyzing Awareness

To learn about Awareness, you need to first understand and analyze the experiences you have. All our perceptions, feelings, thoughts and current thinking are nothing but the experiences we have. When we are awake, there is hardly any moment when we do not have some sort of experience. We have experiences on a continuous basis, sometimes it is structured and willful, while at other times it is random, jumping from one thought to another.

Experience can only happen in the mind and nowhere else. The world is out there, but we experience it only in our minds. Science also states the same thing. Light is reflected from an external object, and this light travels to the retina in our eye. The retina converts the incoming light into an optical signal. This optical signal is transmitted to the visual cortex in the human brain. Science still doesn’t tell us how the optical signal is converted to an actual image, but somehow the visual image is created and we experience this visual image in the mind. This is true for all the five senses – sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell. Even the internal thoughts and emotions which we experience happen only in the mind.

  • Everyone has a unique and private experience. Even if two people are seeing the same object, the experience each of them will have will be different. I am color blind, when I see the external world, I have a different experience of the world compared to other people.
  • If you think about it, experience is the only connection we have with the external world. There is no other way to learn and understand the universe. If we do not experience a thing, then the question can be asked does that thing even exist. Experience is the only way to validate the existence of the universe. We understand and learn from experience, there is no other way to get to know the external world.

As experience only happens in the mind and we want to learn about the building blocks of the mind, the only way forward is to analyze our own experiences.

Experiences Decoded: The following simple equation is a perfect analysis of an Experience

Experience = Awareness + Form

We are always aware of our experience. We can never say we had an experience, but we are not aware of it. This is simply not possible because awareness is a critical pre-requisite and ingredient of an experience. You are having an experience because you are aware of it. If there is no Awareness, there can be no Experience. We are aware that we have a non-stop and a continuous flow of experience. Usually no two experiences are the same, the form part of the experience is always different and keeps changing. Sometimes it is visual, sometimes it is auditory, and sometimes it is based on past memories. The Forms keeps changing, the Experience keeps changing but does the underlying Awareness also keep changing? Our experience confirms that Awareness will always remain the same. It would seem that Form part is superimposed on the unchanging Awareness to complete the Experience.

If you expand this logic and apply to the entire human race, each and every person will have their own experience in their own mind. This Experience equation is valid for everyone. Everyone has different Forms superimposed on Awareness to complete the Experience. Everyone will have their own unique Form to create their own unique Experience.

The common factor in everyone’s experience is Awareness. This Awareness seems to be present in everyone’s mind. Can there be so many different Awareness’s? Is the same Awareness present in everyone’s mind? Is your Awareness different from mine and everyone else? These questions will answer themselves once we get a better understanding what we really mean by Awareness.

Understanding Awareness:

Awareness is the most powerful force in the universe and it is the underlying reality of this universe. It has the power to connect with a form present in the mind and create an experience which you are aware of. For an analogy, think of the sun. When there is no light from the sun, you cannot see anything, but in the presence of the light everything becomes visible. In the same way when any form which comes in the presence of the light of Awareness, the experience bulb lights up in your mind and you are aware of the form. If you think about it, even the light of the sun is a form in the presence of the light of Awareness.

If you carefully study Awareness, you will conclude that the Awareness is made up of a Subject and Object with the following functions

  1. There must be a Subject, who is Aware of the experience. This subject is the knower of the Awareness
  2. There must be an Object, which must be experienced. This object is the known part of the Awareness
  3. There must be Intelligence by which the subject gets to know the object. This is the knowing part of the Awareness

Knower, Known and Knowing are the 3 powers of Awareness. It must be clear that

  • Awareness = Subject + Object + Intelligence
  • Power of Awareness = Power of Knower + Power of Knowing + Power of Known

Awareness is made of Subject, Object and Intelligence and it has three different powers – Knower, Knowing and Known. It must be understood that the Subject and Object and the three powers are not something outside in the world, but they are within Awareness and make up Awareness. If any one of them is missing, the awareness will not work, and will be incomplete.

  • If there is an object to be observed, but there is no subject, there will be no awareness, as there is no one to see the object.
  • If there is a subject, but no object to see, there will no awareness as the subject has no objects to observe
  • If there is an object, but the subject has no way of knowing what this object is, no awareness will take place. This knowing must have intelligence.

Wherever there is awareness, the Subject, Object and Intelligence must be present with all the three powers. Let us try and understand this in little more detail.

  1. Power of Knowing or Intelligence

The knowing or intelligence component of Awareness is extremely powerful, in fact language and words may not be enough to describe its awesome power. Here are some examples that indicates its strength and power.

Example 1: I am seeing a tree. A more Vedantic way to put it will be ‘I am the seer seeing a tree’

This is a simple experience we have every moment, but it shows the extraordinary power of Awareness. Let us breakup this experience into the different components of Awareness

Ego = I am

Subject = Seer

Object = Tree

Intelligence = Seeing is the power of Awareness, which makes it possible for ‘I’ to know the tree. Without the power of Seeing, none of us will see any object. Someone may argue that the eye provides this power. The eye does nothing other than converting the image into an optical signal and bringing the signal to the mind. What is the ability that decodes this optical signal into the understanding that this object is a tree? It is power of the Seeing which is within Awareness which allows us to know that there is a tree. This intelligence in Awareness knows that the optical signal is a tree.

Awareness = Seer + Seeing + Seen

Example 2: You are reading a book or ‘You are the reader reading a book’

This power of intelligence is within Awareness and is available to each and every one. Let us decode the experience of reading.

Ego = You

Subject = Reader

Object = Book

Intelligence = Reading is a power within Awareness which allows the Subject or Reader to connect with the contents of the book. It is within Awareness because you are aware that you are reading – first, to know the words and sentences, and then to know what is being read. We are so used to reading that we do not think of this ability as anything special. If there was no power of reading within Awareness, there would be no way you could read anything. With this power of “reading” we are aware we are reading and this awareness completes the reading experience.

Awareness = Reader + Reading + Read

Example 3: You are visiting a friend or ‘You are the visitor visiting a friend’

Subject = Visitor

Object = Friend

Intelligence = You are aware that you are visiting a friend. This power of knowing that you are visiting is part of the Intelligence within Awareness and also knowing that this person is a friend. If you did not have this power within you, you will never know this person is your friend and you have specifically made an effort to visit him.

Awareness = Visitor + Visiting + Visited

We can continue to give any number of examples to highlight the power of Awareness. We can take any verb in the English language and add the ‘ing’ to this verb. This word when connected with a Subject and Object will have the power of creating an awareful experience within the mind. Some more examples:

Awareness = Eater + Eating + Eaten Awareness = Sleeper + Sleeping + Slept Awareness = Fighter + Fighting + Fought (an Object) Awareness = Player + Playing + Played (an Object) Awareness = Learner + Learning + Learned

The intelligence within Awareness has an unlimited range of power, it is impossible to comprehend. We can comprehend only what experiences our mind can handle. We will be discussing shortly, our minds are limited and therefore can handle only a limited range of experiences.

Awareness is not limited by the capacity of our mind. It is much more and has an infinite amount of intelligence, it has the infinite amount of knowledge about everything that is possible. What is amazing, this unlimited intelligence, this pure intelligence, this Awareness is available within everyone’s mind.

  1. Power of Knower or Subject

In the earlier section, we saw the power of knowing, the intelligence of knowing. There must be a Knower to actually see an object and perceive what it looks like. This is done by the Subject within Awareness. The Subject is the Knower of the experience. This Subject is not only the Knower of seeing, but is also the knower of hearing, the knower of reading, knower of sleeping, etc.

  • When it is the knower of seeing, the Subject is a Seer
  • When it is the knower of hearing, the Subject is a Hearer
  • When it is the knower of reading, the Subject is a Reader
  • When it is the knower of running, the Subject is a Runner

There is only one Subject, and it is the Knower of so many things. In fact it is the Knower of everything. All this is within Awareness. We shall see later on this Subject with the Power of Knowing is available within the mind of each one of us and it is the only way we can know, what our experiences are.

Our minds are limited and therefore the power and range of the Knower is limited. Awareness is beyond the mind and this Subject within Awareness is Knower of everything that is possible. There is nothing that Awareness does not know.

Conclusion: Where ever there is Awareness, there must be a Subject. This Subject is the Knower and has the power of knowing everything that is possible. We should never confuse this Subject with Ego. This Subject is part of Awareness and this Subject does NOT have an ego. If I say ‘I am the Knower’ or ‘I am the Subject’, the ‘I am’ is the Ego. Knower and Subject is not part of the Ego, it is part of Awareness. In Awareness there is no attachment and no ego, it is simply aware.

3.Power of Known or Objects

The Object component of Awareness is also extremely powerful and it has the ability to take any form that we experience in the mind.

If you see a round circle, then awareness cannot take shape of a square. If it does, you will never experience the round circle. Awareness must also be a round circle with the same exact dimensions. If you see a tree, then awareness must also take the shape of the tree. This tree must be filled up with the Awareness. If the tree is half filled with awareness or the awareness does not have the same shape as the tree, you will not be aware of the tree.

If you want to observe any object with form,

  1. The form must be filled in with Awareness and nothing but Awareness. If the form does not have Awareness, then observer or subject will not be able to experience the object with that form.
  2. The Awareness must take the exact shape of the form.

Awareness by itself is formless, but it has the potential to take any form. If you look into a powerful microscope, awareness can take the shape of a molecule or if you look at the universe through a telescope, awareness can take shape of the stars and galaxies. Big or small, awareness can take the shape of anything. Awareness has the potential to take any form.

What is the difference between Awareness and Form?

Pot/Clay Metaphor: Vedanta uses the example of pot/clay to explain this concept. If you have clay, this clay has the potential to take the shape of any type of pot – small, large, round or square. Once these pots of different shapes and sizes are ready, the question can be asked, what part is the pot and what part is the clay? The answer to this question is as follows

Pot = Form Clay = Content

The content is only clay; the pot form is superimposed on the clay. There can be no misunderstanding and confusion about this. In the same way everything we experience in our mind is only made up of Awareness and different Forms are superimposed upon this Awareness.

Next time you see a tree, or listen to music or feel the cold water, you must be clear that the tree, music or water is made up only by Awareness and nothing but Awareness.

Awareness is this powerful force in our mind, which has the ability to take up any shape or form. Another way to put it: all possible ‘potential forms’ are available within Awareness. They are inherently present in Awareness and they take a required form when you experience that form in your mind. How many different ‘potential forms’ are present in Awareness? Countless, infinite!!

Awareness and Maya Shakti Vedanta teaches us that Maya Shakti is the creative power, and this creative power is available within Awareness. From our earlier discussion we saw Awareness has the following 3 powers:

  1. Power of Knowing/Intelligence
  2. Power of Knower
  3. Power of Known/Objects

Maya Shakti is sum total of these 3 powers.

Maya Shakti = Power of Knowing + Power of Knower + Power of Known

This unlimited and amazing power is called Maya Shakti and it is resident within Awareness.

time (t) = 0 is Pure Awareness

To understand and interpret science properly, it is important to understand what we mean by t (time) = 0.  We can say that t=0 means that it is not the past, not the future but the present. It means it is ‘now’. Anything t = 0+ or t = 0- is not ‘now’ but it is the future or the past. Even a nanosecond more or less than t = 0 is not ‘now’; it would be past or future. For your information, based on the Plank constant, the smallest possible time unit is t = 10-44. Even the passage of this extremely small time unit would mean the event is not ‘now’, but the past or the future.

So, where is the t=0 for the universe? Science tells us that the big bang is the t = 0 for the universe. I do not think this is correct. The big bang is 13.7 billion years old, which means the t = – 13.7 billion years for the big bang. Only the location of ‘now’ can be t = 0. Therefore the big bang cannot be t=0. It may have been t = 0 at the time of the big bang, but right now the big bang is 13.7 billion years old. It is an event from the past. So how do we explain t = 0?

Any perception process must have the following two elements

  1. Subject or Observer
  2. Object or Observed

Without these two elements, the perception process would be incomplete.

In the following sections we will analyze and show where we can locate the t = 0 for the Subject/Observer and the Object/Observed. The proper understanding of t = 0 will go a long way in explaining many of the shortcomings faced by science.

Where is t = 0 for the Observer/Subject?

Even before we start understanding t = 0 for the Observer/Subject, the question which must be answered is – what do we mean by an Observer?

  1. All perception takes place only in the mind. Even science agrees with this – the outside image falls on the retina, which is converted into an optical signal and sent to the brain for processing. Science never explains what happens after that but it does state that the final perception takes place in the mind. Also, science never explains who the observer of the image within the mind is. Who is watching the movie being played in the mind?

According to Vedanta, Atma is the Observer which witnesses everything that is happening in the mind and we know the mind is full of activity. This Atma is the Real ‘I’ and it is our underlying reality. Atma is merely an Observer and it never influences, neither is it affected by what is happening in the mind. It is like a witness to a movie which is running in your mind. Though in real life a sad movie can make someone cry, in the case of Atma, it is never affected by the movie running in the mind.

  1. To locate the t = 0 for Atma/Observer let us study the external objects out there. If we can see a faraway star, say, 5 million light years away, it takes light from that star 5 million years to reach us. Now we see the sun, the light from the sun takes 8 min to reach us. We look at the moon; light takes 3 sec to reach us. We look at the plane flying in the sky, at 30,000 feet; light takes about 300 milliseconds to reach us. As the distance of the object being viewed is reduced, the time taken for light to reach us is much smaller. I now look at the tree outside the window; the time taken for light to reach me is 10 microseconds (10-6). I am looking at the computer screen 1 foot away while typing this article, light takes about 1 nanosecond (10-9) to reach me. You even watch your thoughts, they too take some time to form; they are not instantaneous. As the distance reduces the time taken for the light to reach our eyes, reduces. If you extrapolate this backward, the only logical location for t to be equal to 0 is in the Observer, who is watching all these objects. Atma is the Observer, so Atma is t=0 within you. This t=0 is beyond time, it is always ‘now’.

If you or anyone else looks around at the objects in the universe and uses the same reasoning as above, each one will reach the same conclusion: that the Observer within us is the t =0. Everyone will have their own t=0, which is within themselves. This will apply to every living being in the universe. It would therefore seem that I have my own t=0, you have your own t=0 and every living being in the universe has its own t=0. The only way to understand this is that each and every living being creates their own universe and also the t = 0 for each and every one of them. Does this mean that there are multiple t = 0, one for each and every living being? Vedanta teaches us that Atma is the common Observer/Subject for every living being and therefore there is only one t = 0.

  1. So how does Atma create the illusion of being a different Observer within each and every living being? To explain this, the classic example given by Vedanta is the example of buckets filled with water. Picture the sun shining over an unlimited number of buckets filled with water. What would you see? The sun reflected in each and every bucket. You will not see a partial image of the sun, but the complete image of the sun in each and every bucket. Now imagine the bucket represents our body and the water in the bucket is our mind. There are an unlimited number of living beings with a mind in this universe. The shining sun is the Atma. This one, and only one, Atma is reflected in the mind of each and every living being. So, you can see how, Atma/Observer within each one of us is the t = 0.

Where is t = 0 for the Observed/Objects?

If you look closely, you would agree that whatever we see out there is all dated or past stuff. The far way star is 1 million years old, the sun is 8 min old, the moon is 3 sec old, the plane in the sky is 300 milliseconds old, the tree outside my window is 10 microseconds old, and the computer in front of me is 1 nanosecond old. We do not see any ‘now’ objects where t = 0, we only see ‘memory objects’, which are no longer current. The universe is only made up of ‘memory objects’. It is just impossible to find a ‘now’ object in the physical universe. It must be understood that ‘memory objects’ means both living and nonliving objects.

The question is, does there exist a ‘now’ version of any memory objects, where t = 0 for the object? Intuitively you would think there should be a ‘now’ object somewhere. But where is this ‘now’ object?

Science adds to the confusion, when it talks about memory objects, it makes it seems as if they are talking about ‘now’ objects. When a planet is discovered 5 million light years away, it is referred to as if it is a ‘now’ object, but in reality it is a memory object. They are talking about an object which is 5 million years old, no one knows where that planet is ‘right now’. Does it even exist, has it already been destroyed by meteor. No one can be certain. One certainty is that the ‘now’ object cannot be in the same location where ‘memory’ object is 5 million years back.

It almost feels as if there are two different universes – one is the ‘now’ universe and the other is the universe of memory objects. We know where the universe of memory objects is – it is right in front of us. So the question is – where is the universe of ‘now’ objects? You will never find the ‘now’ universe by looking at memory objects, those are all in the past, with old content. You cannot extrapolate memory objects to the future to understand the ‘now’ objects/universe. In a way, memory objects and ‘now’ objects have no connection whatsoever. Therefore, I wonder if science is on wild goose chase when it is looking for the Singularity, by studying and analyzing memory objects.

So where is the universe where everything is ‘now’ and where there are no memory objects? This is just not possible in the space time framework as we know it. To be in the ‘now’ universe, every object in this universe must be at t=0. If t is not =0, then it is not a ‘now’ object, it is a memory object. We know the t = 0 for the Observer is within you, but where is the t = 0 for the ‘now’ object.

We know that the sun we see is 8 minutes old and it is a memory object. Let us play around with this. Now for whatever reason, the sun is only 3 minutes old; it would mean the sun has moved closer to the Observer (and much hotter). In the same way, if the sun is only 30 seconds old, it would mean the sun is extremely close to the Observer, but it’s still a memory object. If you keep extrapolating this and finally if t becomes 0 for the sun, it would only mean that the sun is within the Observer/Atma. We have seen earlier t=0 is the coordinate for the Observer/Atma. For the sun to be a ‘now’ object, it must be within Observer/Atma.

At t=0, the sun is a ‘now’ object, and this ‘now’ object is beyond the space time framework and is within Atma. The only way to understand that for anything to be outside the space time frame work, it must be in its ‘un-manifest’ or ‘potential form’ or ‘seed form’. There is no actual sun, but there is only the potential to become the sun. Just Playdo used by kids has the potential to be manipulated to become different objects, in the same way Atma has the potential to become any object in the universe.

This reasoning and logic will be applicable to every memory object in the universe. The t=0 for all the memory objects in this physical universe is present within Atma/Observer in its ‘potential or seed form’. There is no actual universe within Atma, but the only the potential to become the universe. We are going to explain later on what we mean by ‘potential or seed form’

T = 0 Is Pure Awareness

We just saw that the t = 0 for the Observer is within each one of us. We also saw the t = 0 for all the ‘now’ Objects is also within us. At t = 0 both Subject and Object are the same. They are completely unified and homogeneous with no separation whatsoever. What does this mean? THIS is the singularity which Science talks about. It is the unity of the subject and object.

Vedanta teaches us that the essential nature of Atma is Self-Awareness; that is, it is aware of itself. If you look at Awareness more closely, you will realize Awareness must always have the following two elements.

  1. If you are aware, then there should be someone who is aware. Awareness needs a subject
  2. To be aware, there must be an object which you are aware of. Awareness needs an object.

Subject and object are needed to complete the Awareness process. To be Self-Aware, the subject and object must be within Awareness itself, with no separation. This is Pure Awareness. In our daily perception, we always feel that the subject is here, while the object is out there, there is separation; we are therefore not Self Aware.

Earlier, we saw that t = 0 has both the Subject and Object as non-separate from each other. The only conclusion we can reach is that t = 0 is not only Aware, but it is Self-Aware. Vedanta teaches us that Atma is Self-Aware. Therefore t = 0 is Atma, and this t = 0 is the underlying reality of the universe, including for every living being.

t = 0 is a concept which science can understand. If science does properly understand t = 0, it must reach the conclusion that t = 0 is no different from Atma, which is the underlying reality of this universe.

Time vs. Space

In classical physics, space and time were considered completely different and independent of each other. Newton considered space to have 3 dimensions and a separate single dimension for time. Einstein with his Theory of Relativity showed that space and time where interlinked and he changed the terminology from ‘space and time’ to ‘space time’ and this space time had 4 dimensions. But, it’s hard to understand 4 dimensions, it’s not intuitive. We can only visualize 3 dimensions, so where is the 4th dimension? Neither Einstein nor science has given a proper explanation for this.

  1. If we look at the teaching of Vedanta, this confusion between space and time becomes quite clear. Einstein showed Time and Space are one and the same thing, the only difference is that Time is subtle while Space is gross. Space and Time are referring to the same thing. Space is the gross version of Time. Space is gross; we can see Space out there. No one has seen Time, but we can certainly experience time. From our discussion elsewhere on Subtle and Gross bodies, we can understand that Time is non-physical or subtle. We know that anything subtle is an activity that happens in the mind and mental activities are made up of waves or ‘vrittis’. Since Time is nonphysical, subtle, it must be a mental activity and it must be made up of waves or ‘vrittis’.

Vedanta teaches that the subtle body creates the gross body. Time is subtle and Space is gross, it only correct to conclude that Time creates Space. How to understand this? Science tells us that the universe is 13.7 billion years old. If a photon has to travel from beginning of the universe, it will take the photon 13.7 billion light years to reach us. 1 light year is the amount distance light travels in one year. The size of the universe will be the distance travelled by the photon from the big bang. This distance travelled by the photon is the outer limit of the Universe, because there was no universe before the big bang. If you assume the universe is 13.7 billion years old ‘right now’. After one second, the age of the universe will be 13.7 billion years + 1 sec. The photon now has to travel an additional 186,000 miles to reach us, which means the size of the universe has grown by 186,000 miles. After 10 seconds, the size of the universe would increase by 186,000 x 10 = 1,860,000 miles. After one year from now, the size of the universe will increase by 1 light year. From this reasoning it is quite clear that Time is creating the expansion of the universe. Every year the universe is expanding by 1 light year. As more Time is passing, the Space of the universe is expanding. It is therefore only correct to conclude that Time (which is subtle), creates Space (which is gross).

  1. If Time is subtle, it must be a ‘vritti’ or wave which is present in an individual mind and also in the cosmic mind. This wave has the power to create Time. It is quite difficult for us to understand or visualize the composition of this waveform, but one thing is certain that Time is subtle and therefore it is a waveform and is present in everyone’s mind. If you are looking at the sun, the sun will also be present in your mind as a ‘vritti’ or waveform. Let us try and visualize how the ‘vritti’ of the sun combines with the Time ‘vritti’. It will generate a superimposed waveform in the mind. The time factor is now added to the sun. It is like a mathematical waveform with time as a variable. If you think about it, this superimposed waveform will now provide a history of the sun. Since Time has been superimposed on the sun waveform, the new waveform will have the ‘potential’ to show the sun in all it stages of growth from its birth 4.6 billion years to right now. All the different Suns in the historical time line is present in the Vritti in its ‘potential’ form. For example you are on earth and you want to see the sun. Your mind will have a superimposed vritti of (Sun and Time). When this waveform collapses in the presence of the Observer, you will see an 8 min old Sun. This 8 min old Sun is present in the potential form in the combined Sun + Time ‘Vritti’. Also when the subtle Time becomes gross, it would automatically mean that the position of the sun will be 8 min away from you. It will take light 8 min to reach you.

Let us suppose a person in a planet 1 million light years away is looking at our sun through a telescope. He will also have the same combined waveform of the Sun and Time in his mind as we do on the earth. However, when his waveform collapses, he will see a 1 million year old Sun. These two examples show that the combined Sun + Time waveform has the potential of all the historical Suns. Depending upon the Observers location in the universe, Suns of different ages will be observed. Depending upon the age, it will be placed that many light years away in space.

This logic is not only applicable to the Sun but to each and every object in the universe, both living and nonliving. The Time vritti will combine with the waveform for each and every object in the universe, and this combination will contain the ‘potential’ history in time for all the objects in the universe. It would seem that the Time vritti or waveform is extremely powerful and it has the ability to create objects of different ages. It is indeed very powerful and this power can only be derived from Maya Shakti, the creative power of Atma. Atma is all powerful and it gives its power to Maya Shakti and Maya Shakti passes it on to the Time Vritti. The Time waveform (or vritti) can create objects of all ages by superimposing itself on the vritti of different objects. What is most wonderful is that Atma is the underlying reality for all of us.

Just like Time is subtle and Space is gross, the same logic can be used for Energy and Mass. The famous Einstein equation E = mc2 is self-explanatory. Energy is subtle and Mass is gross, they are both interlinked. Mass is the gross version of Energy. Just like Time is a vritti, in the same way Energy also is a vritti and is present as a waveform in an individual mind and also in the cosmic mind. This Energy vritti when it superimposes with any object vritti, will provide the required energy to the object and when this object becomes gross, it will have the required mass. This is another intriguing power of Maya Shakti and Atma.

If you examine it closely, you’ll find that the Schrodinger Wave Equation applicable to any object has two variables – time and energy. We have just seen that any Vritti or waveform of any object in the mind also has two variables –time and energy.

‘Memory Objects’ vs. ‘Now Objects’

Let us study the external objects ‘out there’. If we can see a far away star, say 5 million light years away, it will take light from that star 5 million years to reach us. Now we see the sun, the light from the sun takes 8 min to reach us. We look at the moon; light will take 3 sec to reach us. We look at the plane flying in the sky, at 30,000 feet; light will take about 300 milliseconds to reach us. As the distance of the object being viewed is reduced, the time taken for light to reach us or for us to see it is much smaller. I now look at the tree outside the window; the time taken for light to reach me is 10 microseconds (10-6). I am looking at the computer screen 1 ft away typing this article, light will take about 1 nanosecond (10-9).

If you look closely at what we have just discussed, you would agree that whatever we see out there is all dated or past. That far away star is 5 million old, the sun is 8 min old, the moon is 3 sec old, the plane in the sky is 300 milliseconds old, the tree outside my window is 10 microseconds old, and the computer in front of me is 1 nanosecond old. We do not see any ‘now’ objects, we only see ‘memory objects’ (for lack of a better word), which are no longer current. The full universe is only made up of ‘memory objects’. This applies to both living and non living objects. Can anyone show me ‘now objects’? However hard you try, you won’t find any ‘now object’ in this universe, you will only find ‘memory objects’.

Nothing is current and neither is anything real. ‘Real’, ‘Live’ or ‘Now’ objects cannot be Memory objects. Just to give an example, if you go to a stadium and watch a sporting event, this event would be a ‘live’ event. Your friend is busy and records the event to watch it the next day. When he watches, his is a recorded event, and what he is watching are memory objects, they are not ‘live’ or ‘real’ objects. If you apply this to the universe, you know that everything you see is in the past, and a memory object, so it cannot be the real “live” event. Therefore, if you see any object, then you can conclude the following

  • Since it’s a memory object, it must be a “recorded” event.
  • If it is a recorded object, it must be stored somewhere in some type of storage or memory device.
  • To see a memory object, it must be played back from some type of memory or storage device.

All this indicates that there is some type of cosmic DVR, which is playing all the memory objects. Maya Shakti, the creative power of Brahman or Atma is this cosmic DVR, which is playing out the blueprint of your life and also the life of the entire universe. This Maya Shakti creates stores and plays back all the memory objects. The space time framework is the screen on which these memory objects are projected. Maya Shakti is the DVR, the space time frame work is the projection screen and the movie being played is the current cycle of creation and dissolution, with memory objects of the universe. Atma is the observer of this movie called Life.

You will never find the composition of the real object by looking at memory objects. Going back to the earlier example of the recording being viewed by your friend, he is looking at the memory or recorded objects being played back on the screen. If he starts zooming in the image to see what the objects are made of, the only things he will find on the screen are pixels! If he spends his entire life only watching recordings and he never sees any real objects, he will conclude that the all objects are made of pixels. What a wrong conclusion this would be! The only reason he reaches this conclusion is because of his ignorance of the real objects. We can apply the same logic and reasoning for the memory objects of the universe. We will never understand what is ‘real’ by looking at memory objects. Because of our ignorance we think the memory objects are real and therefore we are trying our best to find the reality of the universe in these memory objects. Science will never find the underlying reality in these memory objects.

‘Now’ Objects

The far away star is 5 million old, the sun is 8 min old, the moon is 3 sec old, the plane in the sky is 300 milliseconds old, the tree outside my window is 10 microseconds old, and the computer in front of me is 1 nanosecond old – we saw this earlier. We do not see any ‘now’ objects, we only see ‘memory objects’, which are no longer current. The question is, does there exist a ‘now’ version of memory objects? If yes, – where do they exist, how do they exist and what are they made of?

Science adds to the confusion. When it talks about memory objects, it seems to refer to ‘now’ objects. When scientists discover a planet 5 million light years away, they talk as if it is a ‘now’ object, but really it’s a memory object. They are talking about an object which is 5 million years old, no one knows where that object is ‘right now’. Does it even exist, has it been destroyed by meteor. No one can be certain. One certainty is that the ‘now’ object cannot be in the same location where the ‘memory’ object was 5 million years ago..

It almost feels like that there two different universes one is ‘now’ universe and the other is universe of memory objects. We know where the universe made up of memory objects is, it is right in front of us. The question where is the universe of ‘now’ objects. You will never find the ‘now’ universe by looking at memory objects. You cannot extrapolate the memory objects to the future to understand the ‘now’ objects or the ‘now’ universe. It the same as the earlier example of seeing recorded images on TV and trying to find out what the ‘real’ and ‘live’ objects in the live event in the sports stadium are made up. If you study the recorded images on TV, you will only find pixels. You will not find the reality of the live objects.

So where is the ‘now’ universe where everything is ‘now’, where there are no memory objects? This is just not possible in the space time framework. To be in the ‘now’ universe, every object in this universe must be at t=0. If it is not t=0, then it is not a ‘now’ object, it is a memory object. We have seen in previous post and articles that the Observer/Atma/Brahman is t=0, which is fixed and non-moving as compared to the moving universe. We have seen that the Brahman/Atma is the underlying reality of you, me and of everything in this universe which is observed. It is the only ‘now’ universe, where everything is t=0, both for the Observer and Observed. The Observer is the subject and the observed (object) is the universe. Both the subject and object are t=0 in Atma/Brahman. Atma/Brahman is complete (with both the subject and object) and is the only reality of the universe. Everything else is a memory object.

Let us look at this from another perspective. We know that the sun we see is 8 minutes old and it is a memory object. Let us play around with this. Now, for whatever reason, suppose the sun is only 3 minutes old; it would mean the sun has moved closer to the Observer (and much hotter). If the sun is 30 seconds old, the sun is extremely close to the Observer, but it is still a memory object. If you keep extrapolating this and finally if t=0 for the sun, it would only mean that the sun is within the Observer/Atma. We have seen in other articles that t=0 is the coordinate for the Atma/Brahman. For the sun to be a ‘now’ object, it must be within Atma/Brahman. At t=0, the sun is a ‘now’ object, and this ‘now’ object is beyond the space time framework and is within Brahman/Atma.

This reasoning and logic is applicable to every memory object in the universe. The only ‘now’ universe is Atma/Reality, this is the only place where everything is t=0. The ‘now’ universe is Atma, while memory objects universe is the universe we see around us.

So do we have two universes? Can there two universes? Vedanta says that the only universe is Atma/Brahman, but due to our ignorance we have forgotten our true nature of being Atma. This ignorance creates the mind and this mind manifests the photon and creates the physical universe with all the memory objects. Due to our ignorance we think the physical universe is real and we keep looking for the reality within this physical universe.

Where is the Center of the Universe?

Where is the center of the universe? Where is the x=0, y=0, z=0 and t=0 for the universe. Before Galileo, people thought the Earth was the center of the universe, and everything revolved around the earth. Galileo peered into the stars using his telescope; he found that the earth and all the other planets moved around the sun. He realized the sun was the center of the solar system we live in. Using more powerful telescopes, people found that there are billions of stars like the sun in the Milky Way; our solar system is part of this galaxy. All the stars in this galaxy are rotating around the center of the Milky Way. Cosmologists have now discovered there are millions of such galaxies in the universe and all these galaxies moving in relation to each other. There is continuous movement in this vast universe. To find the 0,0,0,0 coordinate for the entire universe, would mean this point should always be stationery or fixed, as compared to the continuously moving universe.

Science states that the big bang is the t=0 for the universe. This t=0 may have been correct at the time of the big bang, but right now the big bang is 13.7 billion old or the t= -13.7 billion years. It is definitely not t=0. Logically the position of ‘now’ can only be t=0. This ‘now’ is the fixed point and it is also the coordinate for x=0, y=0 and z=0. Where do you find this the ‘now’? Time flows continuously, what is ‘now’ becomes past in a millisecond.

Science is still looking but it will never find this immovable (0,0,0,0) in the space time framework, it has to be outside this framework. If you apply the teachings of Vedanta we can find this fixed, non moving coordinate.

  1. Let us study the external objects ‘out there’. If we can see a far away star, say 5 million light years away, it will take light from that star 5 million years to reach us. Now we see the sun, the light from the sun takes 8 min to reach us. We look at the moon; light will take 3 sec to reach us. We look at the plane flying in the sky, at 30,000 feet; light will take about 300 milliseconds to reach us. As the distance of the object being viewed is reduced, the time taken for light to reach us or for us to see it is much smaller. I now look at the tree outside the window; the time taken for light to reach me is 10 microseconds (10-6). I am looking at the computer screen 1 ft away typing this article, light will take about 1 nanosecond (10-9). You even watch your thoughts, this also takes some time to form, and they are not instantaneous. As the distance is reducing the time taken for the light is reducing. If you extrapolate this backward, the only logical place for t to be equal to 0 is the Observer, who is watching all these objects within your mind. We have said in other articles that Atma (your underlying reality) is the Observer, so it the Atma within you, where t becomes 0. This t=0 is, in a sense, beyond time, it is always ‘now’. If you think about it, the center of the universe is the Atma or the Observer, which is within you, me, or everyone. The earth, the sun, the center of the Milky Way is not the center of the universe. The center of the universe, which is your Atma/Observer, is right within you. Vedanta has always said in all its scriptures that Atma is the center of the universe. If the reasoning provided here is correct, it is only logical for science to agree and accept what Vedanta has been saying for centuries.

If you or anyone else looks around the universe, they will reach the same conclusion. Everyone has their own t=0, which is within themselves. This will apply to every living being in the universe. It would seem, therefore, I have my own t=0, you have your own t=0 and every living being in the universe has their own t=0. The only way to understand this, is that each and every living being creates their own universe and this universe starts with t=0. You cannot create your own universe and be separate from it. Science has to correct its thinking; the observer is non-separate from the universe.

As we have mentioned earlier space and time are inter-related. If Atma is t=0, than Atma is also the x=0, y=0, z=0 coordinate for the universe.

  1. If you look closely at what we have just discussed, you would agree that whatever we see out there is all dated or past. That far away star is 1 million old, the sun is 8 min old, the moon is 3 sec old, the plane in the sky is 300 milliseconds old, the tree outside my window is 10 microseconds old, and the computer in front of me is 1 nanosecond old. We do not see any ‘now’ objects, we only see ‘memory objects’ (for lack of a better word), which are no longer current. The full universe is only made up of ‘memory objects’. This applies to both living and non living objects. Can anyone show me ‘now objects’? However hard you try, you won’t find any ‘now object’ in this universe, you will only find ‘memory objects’. We are so used to this that we don’t realize what’s really happening. I am sure scientists are aware of this, but think of it, perhaps as trivial.