[Advaita-l] Scholarly Article on Why Vedas are Valid

Raghav Kumar raghavkumar00 at gmail.com
Fri Oct 14 00:39:23 CDT 2011

Sri Vidyasankar ji
What you wrote is logically unexceptionable. However if I may try to
understand the source of the question and a way of answering it that
may offer some help ...it may be as follows.
  There is no need to establish logically the validity of the Vedas -
they stand on their own strength.
  But if we observe how most lay people and scientists today are
comfortable with an idea like "this medicine "X"  works for this
disease "Y". This statement need not be 100% true in all cases - it is
enough to show that there is a very significant statistical evidence
in its favour in double-blind placebo-controlled trials. Many a time,
the exact curative process is not understood.
  Now let us say, a group of very sincere vaidika-s seeing the chronic
problem of shortage of rain afflicting so many people take it upon
themselves to carefully do the kArIrI yaj~nA at many places and at
many times (whenever there is a shortage and there is suffering.) -
enough to accumlate sufficient data/evidence showing a statistically
significant link between the performance of kArIrI and rainfall.  The
few times it does not work due to some error in the performance need
not be a big issue since we are assuming that the kalpa-tradition for
this or some other such yaj~na with results in this world itself, to
be an active tradition. Please note that the main sankalpa is coming
from the vedic side to alleviate suffering. What next ?
  A scientist can then be asked to offer an explanation for this very
statistically significant link. (ok, we all know that statistics can
lie ..but still, we don;t dispense with it in such a critical area
such as clinical trials do we?). An Astika will not now tell the
scientist "You see, this yaj~na works therefore the devata-s exist." .
He will not say that. Rather he would be 100% correct in asserting the
following -
"Mr.Scientist, you cannot with your analytical tools and matter-based
theories account for this strong correlation no matter how much you
try to explain it away. For example, any explanation along the lines -
"the smoke from the kArIrI sacrifice is alone responsible for the
rain" etc will not work as you will see if you try to emulate the
sacrifice by doing all else but the chanting of mantra-s.Also we have
so much data with us - you can see that even in identical atmospheric
conditions (control), the performance of the sacrifice is the one
differentiating factor and so on and so forth."
  I am not saying that we need to actually go about thus convincing
scientists. But we would be right to contend that Veda postulates of
devata-s etc have definite causal efficacy even in this very world and
science will be unable to explain the vedic karma results if it sticks
to its current parametric ambit. So although the above is not anything
like a "proof" to "logically establish" - it can be called
shruti-sammata-yukti, i.e, we would be right to give "anyathA
anupapattiH" as the hetu for the efficacy of yajn~na-s (be it even
only a statistical correlation and not 100%) . Such yukti-s are
helpful only if a scientist does not have a crusading agenda against
the Veda pramANa.

If we come to think of it, how does a scientist get away with his
theories which are full of fundamental internal contradictions
(between quantum physics and relativity, say) and axiomatic
incompleteness - because he keeps most of humanity happy in their
artha-kAma pursuits by giving them toys like ipads and stuff. So
science is generally not subjected to the kind of intense scrutiny of
its first principles like, of its logic and the absence of a G.U.T
Questions of the kind raised in this thread will only go on increasing
with time unless the other parts of the overall Vedic tradition which
gives alaukika means (yaj~na-s) for laukika ends (artha-kAma ends) are
not revived or rediscovered and the utter weakening of the
kalpa-tradition is addressed. The vedantic dialectic process alone can
never adequately address the deeper source of such questions.
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