This paper was presented at
Psychology: The Indian Contribution
National Conference on
Indian Psychology, Yoga and Consciousness
organised by the Indian Council of Philosophical Research
at the Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education
Pondicherry, India, 10-13 December 2004

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The psychological perspective of our times: Three shifts of a rhythm

Aster Patel — Auroville.

This paper examines the approach and culmination of the pursuit of knowledge in the West and in India, and considers their integration and synthesis for the future. The development of Western psychology, and the parallel development of Western Physics, have led to views of man and existence that respectively are transpersonal and wholistic, and to a point in which their old reductionist assumptions no longer hold and their analytic methods no longer are adequate. They have begun to look for guidance in the Indian approach, which followed a different line but arrived at similar conclusions. The Indian approach was based on three great intuitions: that consciousness is the one all-pervasive fact of existence, that all experience and knowledge flow from identification with this pervasive fact of conscious existence, and that the way of knowing that is by a secret identity with it in the immediacy of one’s consciousness. It is now time for Indian psychology to shift to a new rhythm and approach, one that embraces its own foundational knowledge and approach of the past as well as the knowledge and achievements of the West to create a new synthesis born of a lived experience of wholeness.

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