Center for Foundational Study
PPISR's Center for Foundational Study (CFS) is an initiative to foster a dialog between science and philosophy, with a view to discerning how these two knowledge systems can benefit each other, and thereby enrich our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.
Science deals with mathematical relationships between concepts, wherein the relationships are determined by objective experimentation and mathematical reasoning. But the referents of these concepts, at their most basic level, cannot be defined but must be directly experienced on the subjective level. This creates a gap between the observational or operational world and the ontological world. Quantum foundations and neuroscience are just discovering this following their particular route, but Buddhist and Vedantic philosophers have long tried to point this out.
Undeniably, the methods and terminology of science and philosophy are very different from each other. Getting them to talk to each other is not easy. The basic challenge is identify possible meeting grounds for them. Typically they must be areas where the scientific method encounters fundamental conceptual difficulties, and the intuitive methods of Oriental philosophy may help.
Here we are mainly concerned with the issues:
- Consciousness, free will and neuroscience
- Identity and individuation
- Computational complexity and uncomputability in the real world
- The fundamental nature of time
- Quantum superposition, entanglement and metaphysics of properties & relations
- Causality and the origin of physical laws.
- Quantum vacuum and cosmology
CFS was created in response to HH Shri Vishwapriya Teertha Swamiji's call to the scientists of PPISR to examine possible connections between modern science and Vedantic metaphysics. Under encouragement from Prof. Anand B. Halgeri, the Director, PPISR, and Prof. K. Srihari, Secretary, AMEC and AMEF, it was founded by Dr. R. Srikanth, who acts as its academic coordinator.
A sister organization is the Nalanda Dialog Forum, where the historical dynamics of scientific concepts among Oriental philosophers has been studied for several years.