Anekanta: The Third Eye: [03.06] Relativity - Relativity Is A Great Science

Published: 19.03.2007
Updated: 02.07.2015

The word syaad informs us of relativity. Without it we cannot know the truth nor can it be explained. This truth had been propounded two thousand five hundred years ago but our philosophers could not hold on to it. We should confer monkhood on the contemporary scientist who proved that without relativity truth cannot be explained. He got idea the of relativity so adroitly that today the scientific world looks towards it for all explanations. All science and scientific beliefs that developed before the idea of relativity now stand annulled.

Today in physics, math and statistics the concept of anekanta is being used uninhibitedly; relativity is being employed freely for further research and study. Today science contends that without relativity no great truth can be explored.

When the great scientist, Einstein, said that time and space were relative, then there was great commotion in the scientific world. Many scientists did not accept this. They could not understand how time and space could be relative. But gradually this concept could be understood, was proved and today it is an accepted norm.

We explain any event with respect to time and space, but we forget that time and space themselves are relative. The relativity of time and space was explained by a scientist and not by a Jain follower of anekanta or syaadvad. They had not done any significant work in that direction. How wonderful it would have been if what Einstein had said, a Jaina had proved earlier. Were these ideas not clear before them? Was not the concept of relativity clear? The ideas and concepts were clear but they did not think of its articulation in a new context. Do Jains think time is not relative?

No, time is always relative. We have divided time into three parts: past, future and present. Why was it divided? Time can never be divided, broken. Time is never such that you can think of it as having gone by.

The scientists of today are engaged in research in this direction: to recreate the times of Mahavir, Buddha, Krishna and so on by going back some two thousand years in time: that the man of the present should be able to hear the preachings from Mahavir and the Buddha. That the present day man should hear and see Mahavir preaching non-violence and equanimity, the Buddha preaching compassion and Krishna delivering the message of the Gita. Can such a possibility exist? To an ordinary man it may seem impossible for one who is dead and gone, who has been cremated, how can he be seen again? This is an event of the past. How can the past be recreated as the present? To me and you it may seem as an event from the past, but to the scientist who views time and space as relative, it may not be so.

  • Anekanta: The Third Eye by Acharya Mahaprajna, © 2002
  • Translated by Sudhamahi Regunathan
  • Published by Jain Vishva Bharati Institute (Deemed University), Ladnun, Rajasthan, India

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Anekanta
  2. Buddha
  3. Einstein
  4. Equanimity
  5. Gita
  6. JAINA
  7. Jaina
  8. Krishna
  9. Mahavir
  10. Math
  11. Non-violence
  12. Science
  13. Space
  14. Syaad
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