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Varadaraja V Raman
The Self: Scientific and Religious Perspectives


From the scientific perspective, the Self is an emergent phenomenon which ceases once and for all after the demise of the physical body. From the religious perspective, it has an existence beyond the physical body and is in fact immortal. This lecture will explore the notion of the Self from the scientific as well as the religious perspectives which are traditionally incompatible. It will discuss the limitations in both views, and will offer a view which may bridge the two.


Dr. Varadaraja V. Raman received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Physics and Mathematics from the University of Calcutta before doing his doctoral work on the foundations of quantum mechanics at the University of Paris where he worked under Louis de Broglie. He has taught in a number of institutions, including the Saha Institute for Nuclear Physics in Calcutta, the Universite d'Alger in Algiers and the Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY, from where, after serving as professor of Physics and Humanities, he has retired as Emeritus Professor.

He was associated with the UNESCO as an educational expert. Dr. Raman has also devoted several years to the study and elucidation of Hindu culture and religion. He is an associate editor in the eighteen volume Encyclopedia of Hinduism Project. Dr. Raman has authored scores of papers on the historical, social, and philosophical aspects of physics/science, as well as on India's heritage, and has authored eight books including Scientific Perspectives, Glimpses of Ancient Science and Scientists, Nuggets from the Gita, and Varieties of Science History.

Dr. Raman serves on the board of the Metanexus Insitute and is a regular contributor to its online magazine.


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