I have often wondered about one thing – why does a Yogi/Guru/Pandit/Brahman spend a life of detachment and why does that person, specially in the case of Yogis, not worry at all about how they will feed themselves and how, if they choose to take up a family, will their family be fed and taken care of. After all, the Yogi may not need food or clothing but the family must be taken care of; that is the way of the middle path…

While pondering about this today, I realised something – all the scientists of yore: those who devoted their lives to finding solutions to problems related to humanity such as disease, food shortage, physics and electricity and the wonders of space were also not concerned about their own well-being but were obviously family men, as that was the norm of the previous millenium. Then how were they able to ensure that their family be well taken care of and how were they able to secure a source of income for those dependent on them? The answer seems fairly obvious – they were creating or discovering material means of ease or solutions to widespread problems which provided them a marketable good which became their source of income. Then I began comparing these scientists and the spiritual individuals which I think about. Of course, the thought came almost instantly!

Are these spiritual guides not scientists too? Are they not researching a powerful part of Nature the ramifications of which affect every individual on the planet? Are they not using the powers they gain while they continue their research to provide us with a kind of important service(palmistry/jyotishi/rituals and ceremonies/peace of mind by Yoga, Dhyan, Bhakti, Seva)? Then do not these “Spiritual Scientist” deserve monetary compensation for the lives they lead so that their worldly affairs be in order and they be better able to concentrate on spiritual matter?

I believe that they are worthy of that compensation and as is obvious, I am not alone. Today, spiritual gurus and pandits/Yogis have a larger than life following and grandeur which beats that of erstwhile Kings. Of course, this is all because people belive that the person charged with the responsibility of guiding their troubled lives towards salvation be not in any sort of material discomfort.

But what is the mark of a true scientist?

  1. Is it humbleness? Definitely the ranks of western scientists who fought over claims of discoveries and trashed each other’s research as baseless prove that humility is not high on the list of qualities.
  2. Then is it applicability of research? Einstein is well-known for his E=MC^2 despite no normal person really understanding what that even implies and even spirituality is not an exact science which defines the results it will derive before beginning the work.
  3. Perhaps it is popularity of their research and a keen following by the common man? Galileo will be squirming in his tomb if that is suggested. That true scientist was held in heresy for his views that the Earth might just be revolving around the Sun after all!

Finally, one must believe that there must be some way to distinguish  a true scientist from a fake one and there-in lies the answer, specially in the case of spirituality. A Spiritual Scientist’s biggest proof of being true to the profession is that people have faith in that person and the abilities that the person gains while striving to research into the realms of Metaphysics.

That, perhaps, is the truest test of a Spiritual Scientist!