The Scientific Community and Consciousness (04/10/12)
Such a nice question… I really wish I had more time at present to dedicate to answering your question.
In short, the living entities manifest from the taṭastā-śakti and their form is intrinsic. Entering the material world they take on a material form or covering. But entering the spiritual world they manifest there intrinsic form and are non-different from that form.
In material existence the living being is not the body, but in spiritual existence the living being is non-different from the spiritual body, just as Kṛṣṇa is non-different from His body.
I am also intrigued by the developments in science towards understanding consciousness, but my conclusion is that it will be a long, long time before science will understand that ultimately consciousness, the consciousness that generated the universe, has form and personality. I think that first science will come to understand a conception similar to the impersonal Brahman/brahma-joyti.
Years ago, we found that science (physics) was strongly influenced by the void conception of Buddhism. Now they are moving beyond that because their models do not work, or do not really explain anything completely. Now they are moving towards consciousness as the cause of everything, but that is as far as they will progress.
The scientific process is an ascending process of acquiring knowledge and such a process, as also practiced by the māyāvādīs, can reach up to the impersonal Brahman. But to understand the intrinsic form of individual consciousness and the ultimate conscious Being (Viṣṇu/Kṛṣṇa) is only possible by, and thru, surrender to Kṛṣṇa and Kṛṣṇa’s bona-fide representative – thus receiving revelation/realization thru the descending process.
Individually a scientist can come to the stage of accepting Kṛṣṇa (the ultimate form of conscious beauty) at any time, but for the scientific community in general I really think that it will take many, many decades for that to happen… and maybe never.