In our wise and humble way of thinking Knowledge was to be shared freely as the source of all knowledge is God--the creator and sustainer alone; Humans are Nimitta Maatra (merely instruments). Our experience is any knowledge when taken without humility and without credit to the original source does not bless, rather it can become the opposite. Maybe that is our problem in the West now. We have wealth and physical comforts at the present time, but minus a proper frame of mind to enjoy it. It seems what we have gained is an ability by which we are going to destroy the world as it exists today. Even that for us Hindus is not a problem, as we know the Creation comes to an end only because of Human folly and then the Almighty Creates again in all its glory to give us one more chance! However, it is a tragedy that need not be, by making every country suffer the same fate we only enlarge the scope of Human suffering.
Is there an alternative to this useless suffering where everyone is being taught to be against everyone else? Surely, it lies in the Vision of Sanaatana Dharma via Advaita Vedanta, which has known and tried to teach what Quantum Physics is saying today, in fact there are a multitude of Western writers from past to the present who have studied the Vedic philosophy and become famous by using its knowledge. Let me name a few for you: Goethe to Schopenhauer to Schroedinger, Voltaire to Michelet to Malraux, from Thoreau to Emerson to Whitman, from Toynbee to Huxley to Yeats. In more recent times Jung of the Jungian Institute and now Ken Wilber. The whole New age movement and the field of Parapsychology is a rehash, often not so well done and camouflaged in complicated academic language, of Advait Vedanta alone. Stealing has been endemic for many countries and not blessing us as it should!
The main ingredient of this precious knowledge given by the Rishis to Humanity gets lost because the stress is mostly on acquiring at any cost. Central to our tradition is the concept as put forward by Kaalidas, the famous poet,
शरीरमाद्यं खलु धर्मसाधनम्
śarīramādyaṃ khalu dharmasādhanam
Meaning: This body is surely the foremost instrument of doing [good] deeds.
This human mind, body, sense complex is given to a human being for the purpose of understanding the Oneness that permeates this whole creation. That is why there is a Vedic statement; Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam or this whole Creation is a family, which stands for interconnectedness. Quantum Physics says exactly the same when it claims that even the flutter of the butterfly’s wings moves the whole universe!
From this understanding it becomes the duty of a person to realize her/his divinity or put another way to know that there is an identity between the individual, Universe and God, (our words are Jiva, Jagat and Ishvara) this fact is hidden; in a human form we have been given a free will to explore this mystery. Only because of this ability we are a higher form among innumerable forms. In the absence of this understanding, human behavior becomes total manipulation of every part of this world leading to destruction and pain for all. This individual pain is leading to more and more violence; those who experience pain give only pain to others.
Life from our point of view is for living happily but within Dharma--ethically. A life of Dharma means to accommodate as much as possible but not when it starts to violate Dharma itself. That is why the World Hindu Council logo says:
Dharmo Rakshati Rakshitah
Dharma, a word with several meanings may best be understood as: Proper living, cognizant of the intrinsic values of this Creation. However, always protecting a society from those who violate this basic law of proper living or dharma.
Where Advait Vedanta and Quantum physics meet is in the discovery of each, in the fact that at a certain point the Subject-Object differentiation disappears. Since we experience only duality in everyday life, the concept of absolute oneness is enormously puzzling to understand. In fact, there cannot be any teaching for duality as it is obvious to us in every phase of our daily experience. All religions that are based in seeing only this duality (vyavaharika) have no teaching at all; they can only preach dos and don’ts. They become religions of canons and creeds producing immense guilt in the followers; which in turn leads to either no belief in a God or mental depressions, hate crimes and the whole shebang as we are seeing now all over the world in the form of terrorism and separatist movements even random killings.
In conclusion, I will say to all, that it has become our responsibility to learn what our Samskriti/culture has explained in a thousand different ways. No world Peace is likely when some religions claim they alone have the one and only way to God. If there are hundreds of ways to do everything else, even to cook potatoes, to say one way to God shows extreme foolishness on the part of us Human beings or perhaps complete apathy towards the concepts that can make us worthy of being called HUMAN.