Q: Are you enlightened?
A: Depends on what is meant by enlightenment. If it means knowing all the secrets of the universe my reply is an emphatic no. If it means removal of doubt about reality then it is yes.
Q: What is reality?
A: It still remains a big mystery. All I am entitled to say is that an enchanting beauty appears to pervade the universe.
Q: Please tell us in a little detail about your enlightenment.
A: Enlightenment is a personal experience which can not be shared or copied. Therefore going into its details will be misleading. Suffice it to say that you see things which ordinarily you can not even think of seeing. It is an extraordinary sensory experience which can not be described in words.
Q: What does it change?
A: It changes the perspective. A holistic certainty replaces the doubts and dilemmas.
Q: Has enlightenment given you any supernatural power?
Q: Did it make you wise?
A: Only the little bit of wisdom about reality that it really exists. For the rest study and meditation helped.
Q: What is your view about god now?
A: The old man has taken a lot of abuses in the last ten thousand years of human civilizations. He urgently needs a decent burial for our own good.
Q: Are you advising us to abandon god and rejoin the animal world?
A: Precisely. Instead of thinking like a banished citizen of paradise we must start thinking like a most evolved animal- the wise animal.
Q: How does this attitude help us?
A: It will arrest fundamentalism and the fundamentalists and stop the religious strife and the clash of races and civilizations.
Q: How does it help in spiritual development?
A: It frees us from the religious deadwood (the dogmas) which impedes spiritual development. It will transform us into innocent and inquisitive children once again.
Q: Our civilization is rooted in materialism and pseudo spiritualism. This animalism will find few takers. Please comment.
A: Unless this hi-tech civilization of ours mends its ways, it is certain to follow other civilizations into oblivion.
Q: Do you mean to say that without animalism/humanism all civilizations are doomed to perish?
A: Why should nature favor this particular civilization? There is absolutely no reason to sustain this hope. Millions of species are extinct. One more addition of the homo-sapiens should hardly cause a ripple in the universe. Wise animalism/humanism has a sobering effect on our thought process; binding us to the mother earth and this unique life. It makes us realize that we swim or sink together with other animals and plants.
Q: How does spirituality enter the animal world?
A: Spirituality in some of the wise animals is the evolution of higher consciousness. From the single cell organisms to trillion cells homo-sapiens what really evolved is the brain, the mind and the consciousness.
Q: What is the position of earth in the humanist cosmology?
A: It is far off the center of our galaxy, but, it is the nursery of life and consciousness in this corner of the Milky Way.
Q: What could be the purpose behind the development of consciousness?
A: I can offer an educated guess. Consciousness prepares us for the primary school beyond this nursery.
Q: Aren't you hinting at soul and its transmigration?
A: Yes, but with a distinction that the next world is not the last world. At no point in this eternal journey do I expect to dissolve into god or attain static blessedness.
Q: Where does the soul come from?
A: It must have evolved with life. Only the wise animals possessing souls is ridiculous as there isn't any ground for this differentiation in nature.
Q: Do you accept the karma theory of Indian philosophy?
A: The karmic theory is the only workable theory about the soul. But as an ancient science it has its limitations.
Q: Such as?
A: It only talks about individual karma although we suffer others' karma too. Moreover, freedom from the cycle of birth and death is not the dead end, but, the beginning of yet another exciting life in a more enchanting world.
Q: What could be the basic difference between this world and the next one?
A: Here we have bodies which need servicing throughout the life. The body weight impedes the free movement of the soul residing in it. Now imagine a world where the souls are free from the cage of a body.
Q: How did you arrive at such a fantastic conclusion?
A: It is a simple, logical extension of the transmigration of souls which begins with micro-organisms. It sheds its bodies by dying again and again and rises up the evolutionary ladder by being born into a higher species. After millions of these cycles, it attains the highest rung of homo-sapiens. It is, then, very natural that it should transcend this species too.
Q: Most of us, humans, are not ready for this great leap. Why?
A: Human evolution has three stages. The biological evolution comes first which we share with other animals. Given proper food and care a child matures into an adult. Other two staged are peculiar to homo-sapiens due to its much developed brain. They are intellectual and spiritual developments. Acquiring and imparting knowledge and skills, science and technology, arts and crafts etc. are intellectual activities. Last but not the least is the spiritual development when a wise animal becomes one in thought, speech and action. Most of us are passing through stage two.
Q: All the children are one in thought, speech and action. Will you call it spirituality?
A: Why not? It is nature's hint at our goal. Actually the unity of thought, speech and action prepares the mind for the detached and rational thinking.