The Rig Veda: Religious Experience and Religious Languages

By Antonio T. De Nicolas, PhD

Oh God, make me realize that the only way to reach you is by getting rid of you. -Meister Eckhart

Aditi, the boundless, is the sky, the air, the mother, the father, the son, all the gods and all the men,
all that is, was, and shall be.
– Rig Veda 1 ,89, 101

Preliminary Notes

The first note I want to write down for the consideration of the reader is this one: Contemporary neurobiology confirms a plurality of intelligence centers in humans in ways that should be very familiar to Hindus all over the world. We do not have just one brain, but several: the reptilian, limbic, visual neo-cortex, conceptual left hemisphere, and the interpreter module; three main brains in the right hemisphere, two in the left hemisphere of the neo-cortex. The first two brains (the reptilian and the limbic are vibrations, while the third one, the visual-neo-cortex, allows us to see three dimensional objects, and it is a language of images that can be interpreted either by sight criteria (the literary cultures) or sound criteria (the oral/audial cultures), as is the case with the Rig Veda. Perception comes to us via the right brain as a whole and the left brain then, selects what it wants or needs. The left brain has access only to the right brain’s global image, not to the world outside. What we call the self is the result of a delay mechanism in the brain itself passing from perception to translation, a virtual reality at best. This is the brain the West calls the rational brain, though it is aware only of a five per cent of the information available, and this is the brain that serves as foundation of all social sciences. In Hindu philosophy this brain (manas) is only one more of the senses, the sixth. The interpreter module has access only to the left brain and it is the receptacle and creator of names, beliefs, theories and ideologies. The main technologies of these two left brains are logic and fantasy, where the subject is the beginning, middle and end of all narratives.

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