Naskarism

About Abhijit Naskar

Abhijit Naskar is one of the world's celebrated Neuroscientists, an International Bestselling Author of numerous books and a popular advocate of mental wellness and global harmony. He has revealed to the world with his contributions in Science how the basic awareness of the brain can completely redefine our perception of life and make our daily life much more cheerful. He takes us on a fascinating investigative journey of understanding the human mind and its vivid features. He was born in Calcutta, India. His rejuvenating scientific philosophy of the mind has been lavishing human life with the colors and sweetness of self-awareness, since its advent with his very first book "The Art of Neuroscience in Everything".

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Latest Release

Only you can save yourself

I am Lord the savior – I am the God of all gods – I am the messiah that the humans have been desperately waiting to come – I am the messiah, the prophet, the Son and the Holy Father. And through me you shall find salvation in life. Your life will never be holy and religious unless you submit to my all-pervading radiance of divine supremacy. Submit o petty little sinner, for you have sinned, and it is I who can save you from your sins. Only I am pure and absolute, and you are a born sinner.

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You heard everything I just said. Now I have a question of real significance. Do all these statements make you question my psychological sanity! Do they? If yes, then we can proceed with this brief piece, otherwise, there is no use of this entire article filled with a bunch of words. So, I am assuming, the statements that I just made, make you doubt my mental lucidity.

Wonderful – they should. That’s exactly what I intend them to induce in your mind – a sense of skepticism about me and about everything I have previously said and written. Are you skeptic of me? Good that you are. Good for both you and me. Now here is the second question. If these statements make you doubt my sanity, then why aren’t you bothered with those countless other statements made by various religious institutions that are exactly similar in their narcissistic nature.

Why don’t you question the church, the bible, the vedas, the quran, when they relentlessly boast about the indisputable, supreme authority of their own prophet, messiah, image of god over all humanity! How dare an institution claim authority over the humans! Why aren’t you shaken at this? How can you sleep so sound, when the whole world, or at least most of it, is basically obsessed with the divine supremacy of these self-glorified institutions and organizations.

Also, there are other organizations that talk relentlessly about religious harmony, tolerance and freedom, and yet they never really address the real reasons of all the harms caused in the name of religion. They never pick up a bible or a quran and point out the verses and instructions that are basically sign of megalomania, xenophobia, misogyny and many other barbarian evils. Yet these organizations call themselves progressive and free from prejudices.

Harmony shall never be installed in the world, especially in the domain of religion, as long as, the people radically attached to those religions are unwilling to recognize and eliminate the evils in their own organized structure of so-called religion. I am saying so-called religion, because, organized religion is an immature attempt to understand religion and be religious. Real religion lies in freedom from all organizations – be it religious, spiritual, or non-religious.

Ask yourself this my friend? Are you free? Are you free from labels? Are you free from conformities? Or even if you are not completely free in all these aspects, are you at least aware of the fact that you are not free? If yes, then only there is hope for you. Only then there is hope for real religion, peace and harmony manifesting in the human world.

I am not the hope, neither is any other historical, imaginary or mythical savior. What am I! Nothing. As far as your life is concerned, I am no more valuable and holy than the particles of dust under your feet. So, I have nothing to give you. Only you my friend, can define, understand and manifest religion within yourself. Only you can save yourself.

To quote from my new book ‘A Push in Perception’

“Ultimately, beyond the primordial, brutish labels of man-made institutions, true practical religion of the civilized society must bring oneness. This very process of unification without bigotry is what makes religion, religion, for the word religion comes from the latin “religare”, which means “to bind”, that is to unify humanity.”

 

{Simultaneously published on Goodreads.)

Further Reading

A Push in Perception, 2017

Rowdy Buddha: The First Sapiens, 2017

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Right to Religion is Human Right, but on one condition

Right to religion, is an actual basic existential right of humankind, at least, at its present evolutionary condition. I am beginning this piece, with this, perhaps a bit radical statement, because it would reveal to you your own deep stance on religion without any ambiguity. It would either enrage you fueled by your illustrious atheistic superiority, or it will soothe you, fueled by your innate closeness to your own religion. But to go deeper into this piece, neither of these two extremes would do.

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You would have to take off your glasses before you begin – the glasses of theism as well as the glasses of atheism. And when I say “have to”, I do not mean it as an obligation, rather I mean it as a necessity. Because broken souls cannot perceive wholeness. And both the theist and the atheist have obvious perceptual limitations because of their innate brokenness – because of their innate loyalty to a label. Labels may help you feel comfortable in a certain domain, but to see the whole picture, these tiny internal domains must be destroyed first. If, and only if, you are willing to do that, then we can proceed with utmost naivety, with no thesis or antithesis in mind.

What is a right – is there any such thing? The term “right” only exists in a society where people don’t have something that’s necessary for sustaining existence. If this were the animal kingdom instead of a human society, we would not need the term “right”, instead we would simply fight and acquire what’s necessary or die fighting. We use the term “right” in a so-called civilized society, because we want to acquire it with as little fight as possible. In a truly civilized society, we would not need the term “right”. Think about it. You breath in air all the time for its content oxygen, which is necessary for existence. But what would happen, if clean air becomes scarce, like it has become in China, and slowly becoming in India! Then clean air would be manufactured, like some companies are already doing. Hence it becomes a product, which you may or may not have access to. In the extreme case that you do not have access to it for free, clean air which clearly is an existential necessity for humans, would become a matter of right. But it would ultimately depend on the companies whether or not to give their product of clean air away for free – or to be more specific, you would be at their mercy. You may feel access to clean air is your right, but in reality, you no longer have that luxury. Because the companies manufacturing the product, have the ultimate right to that product.

Religion is not much different from clean air, for religion is basically the psychological counterpart of clean air. Clean air is a physiological necessity, whereas religion is a psychological necessity. Here you may think of the term “religion” to be a very simply term with very specific common meaning to all humanity, but in reality, no other term could have as diverse array of meanings as the term “religion” has in the psyche of the humans. But when I say “meanings”, I am not talking about etymology – etymology does not say anything about the place of a term in the human mind. Here I am talking about the wide range of human perceptions of the very term religion. What is this whole religion phenomenon – is it a kind of shampoo – is it a kind of smartphone – is it a kind of computer – or is it a kind of ideals! I don’t think anybody would see it as a shampoo, or a smartphone or a computer even, but perhaps some or perhaps most humans would see it as a kind of ideals and beliefs. Let’s be a bit articulate here. Most humans see religion as a set of beliefs, sustained through rituals. This is what you know as organized religion, that is, an organized structure where an institution of fake superiority determines the lifestyle of a group of people. These institutions say – “give your life to us, to our savior, or to our prophet, and you will have peace.” And they call it religion, by it, I mean this blind obedience to a fake authority, in the hope of psychological security and well-being. Most people are too entangled at a deep subconscious level with this sense of illusory security, hence they shall do everything in their power to defend their beliefs, which to them are synonymous with “religiousness”, if confronted with refutal.

Now the real question is – if this is the global idea of religion and religiousness, can it be hailed as a basic human right! Hard as it may be, a civilized human being would have to be willing to recognize the basic need for this so-called organized religiousness of the humans as a basic human right. But – yes, there is a “but” involved – not the double t one, you dirty fella! This little “but” is involved because, this very religion that we are talking about here, is a messed up form of religion, and has a lot of negative implications on the human society as a whole – here I am referring to the global human society, not a specific group of people. The problem with organized religion is that, because it involves, its own customized god, its own messiah, its own prophet, its own scripture – it inadvertently induces its followers to foster a kind of implicit hatred or simply a sense of conflict towards people of other organized religions. So, though right to practise one’s own religion, may be a basic human right, by all means, it must be watched over by the very humans practising those religions, so that they do no let hatred creep into their heart, no matter how many verses in their beloved scripture proclaim people of other religions to be infidels.

If the humans are able to keep hatred out of their religious practise, then and then only it’s a religious practise – and then only organized religion as it is, can be hailed as a basic human right. But any religion that endorses such hatred, instead of trying to eliminate them, has no right itself to be a part of a civilized human society. Anybody who says – my religion is the only true religion, all others are fake or inferior, has no right to any religion whatsoever, for this creature is not a human – it’s ancient animal living in a modern society under the skin of a human. Religion is for humans, not animals. And any religion that advocates its own supremacy over all other religions, is not religion, rather it’s merely a sophisticated form of tribalism, which belongs in the jungle, not in the human society. So in short, a human can have right to religion, only and only if, that human, as well as the religion he or she wants right to, do not endorse any kind of conflict, either explicit or implicit. Which means, a human has a right to religion, not an animal with self-imposed superiority. Bear in mind, religion must bring oneness, otherwise it’s not religion, but merely a cheap parody of religion. And that’s the religion, every single human being of pure soul has the existential right to – or to simplify even further, without the religion of oneness, there shall be no human life in human body, but only animal life in human body.

Keep in mind, my friend – “We are not divine beings in mortal bodies, We are mortal bodies in pursuit of constructing divine perfection within us.” (quote from Lord is My Sheep: Gospel of Human)

 

(Simultaneously published on Goodreads.)

Further Reading
Illusion of Religion: A Treatise on Religious Fundamentalism, 2017
Lord is My Sheep: Gospel of Human, 2017

Nature of Man, Nay Human! – New Talk

“Humans are not evil – humans are not good – humans are just humans – a unique combination of both good and bad.” – What is Mind

In this talk, Abhijit Naskar discusses the age-old question – what is the nature of man? He starts off with the correction of the very term “man” referring to humanity.

 

Further Reading
What is Mind?, 2016

The Tribal Myth of Reincarnation – New Talk

“Once you die, that’s it – game over. Death is the ultimate cessation of the individual Self.” – Principia Humanitas

In this talk, Abhijit Naskar discusses the primitive origin of the idea of reincarnation out of the lack of comprehension of death.

 

Further Reading
Autobiography of God: Biopsy of A Cognitive Reality, 2016

Love is Water to the Soul

“All I want for Christmas is you” – this is the phrase that’s popping in my mind, like popcorn in the microwave oven as I sit down to write this piece on love. But I wonder, what can I tell you via this piece that has not been said or written before! Yes, tons and tons of words have been born throughout the world surrounding the word “love”, yet what I intend to point out to you is that most of those words have been born to address not love rather only the early stages of love, which are more connected to the temporary mental state of euphoria, crush and infatuation than the actual experience of lasting invincible love which does not wear off in time.

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The cynics would say, there is no such thing as “lasting invincible love” – they would say it’s all mere impractical romanticism, whereas the people who have fallen in love quite recently would say “of course there is, and that’s exactly how I feel”. Yet, the truth is, both of these people are speculating based on their current subjective biases either towards the lack of love in their life, or towards the pleasure of the honeymoon phase. They are both speculating based on their internal chemical states. But we are now going to go beyond both these opposite extremes, and look at the big picture.

If you truly look you’d find out that love is rarely, or perhaps, not at all, floating around you – what’s really floating is the element of either subconscious or conscious anticipation of instant gratification masquerading quite gloriously as love. And that’s the reason, why all the love in the world, or at least most of it, wears off or becomes tiresome and boring after the individual gets used to the gratification of romantic, emotional and sexual significance. It’s not love my friend – it’s a business deal that ends at a certain moment in the future.

So, what is true love – not the illusory love everybody is obsessed with for centuries – but actual love – the love of immense psychological potential – the love that liberates the mind, and not binds it with shackles of insecurity and fear! Unfortunately the only available form of this liberating love can only be seen, not among romantic partners, but between a mother and her child – this is a love less conditioned, or at least, comparatively less conditioned than other forms of love available in the society.

Love your partner like you love your mother, and that love will never lose its fragrance. I am aware that this very statement might sound weird to some. But let’s think over it and go deeper into it. But for that you’d need to first put aside all your pre-conceived notions about love. If your cup is full with conformities, then it can no longer acquire true insight into a certain phenomenon. So, for the time being, let’s put the conformities aside, shall we! And let’s look at love, as if you and me both are newborn babies with no understanding of love whatsoever.

You love your mother not because she gives you any kind of instant sexual gratification but because you either consciously or subconsciously are biologically aware of the fact that she is the person who’s never going to leave you no matter what. It is imprinted in your genetics – your bond with your mother – a bond that is beyond the conformities of love, sexuality, beauty, attachment, trust and everything else. It is a bond beyond labels. And a bond which is beyond labels cannot be ruined by sociological conformities comprised of those labels. The love for your mother is the most natural form of love, whereas the love for your partner is hugely acquired through external stimuli. And a love that is fundamentally dependent on external stimuli is a love, which is more a kind of business deal than real love.

So, ask yourself this – in all the relationships that you have ever been in, have you ever truly loved the other person, or were you loving the person because you were receiving something from that person – don’t condemn yourself or judge your actions – simply ask. And if one loves another in anticipation of something in return, then that’s not love, it’s a radical business deal. And in today’s so-called civilized world, this business deal called “love”, greatly begins with the revealing of genitals to each other. Genital euphoria and gratification have hugely become the measure for love and romance.

But the point is, showing your vagina or penis is easy, but showing your soul is not. And your soul is really all you have. And you don’t really live with another person’s body, rather you live with his or her soul, for the physical attraction to the body wears off after a while in a relationship, but the attraction to the soul is permanent. And this permanence defines the quality and content of your life with another person. So be picky with revealing your soul to another, not because of a subtle consideration for separation, no matter how subtle, but because you want to have something solid and permanent, not lousy and shaky. Also, be picky, but not too picky, that your bond with the other person never begins in the first place.

So the bottom line is, focus on what’s within, not without, and within as in, not within the pants, but within the mind – within the soul. And just to be clear, the mind is the soul – but in some cases I prefer the term “soul” over “mind” because of its superior impact upon the human psyche. Make the content of the mind your measure for a relationship, and you shall find solace. And don’t just take my word for it, rather go out there and figure it out yourself – if you are really serious about it. Nevertheless, all I see around in the name of relationships, are some superficial ships of lust, euphoria and instant gratification, and not genuine vessels of strong, pure, internalized love.

In a society where physicality takes preference over the content of the psyche, relationships can only be pleasurable for merely a few years, or alas, months. And that’s why the countless “I do”s of the world have become merely a matter of valueless words of over-glorified principles, without the foundation of purity and awareness to begin with. Hence, before anyone could foresee and comprehend, the “I do”s become “I do not”s. So, be aware of the outside, but focus on the inside. And here I am not condemning physical attraction, rather I am saying be aware of the outside, but be more watchful of the inside than the outside.

On the inside, we are all indeed chemical beings, but if you see it strictly that way, you can never think, feel and behave beyond chemistry. In order to have a pure loving relationship with another person, you need to take a step beyond chemical satisfaction, then only, those chemicals will behave according to your will, thus giving you the power to build something truly original, something with an unshakable foundation. If you ask the Neuroscientist in me, what love is, then that image which you have imposed on me, would tell you that – love is all about chemical activity and ultimately reproduction. But if you ask me the human who uses science as his tool to unify humanity and to make them take a step forward in the path of collective psychological evolution, then I shall tell you – love is born of chemicals, but if it stays that way strictly, then humanity is soon bound to die internally due to dehydration, for love is water to the soul. Open your heart and let the water flow – don’t condemn it, don’t anticipate it – simply let it flow.

 

(Simultaneously Published on Goodreads.)

Further Reading

Wise Mating: A Treatise on Monogamy, 2017

It’s Complicated! Nature of Love and Relationship – New Talk

“True Love is 20% Care, 80 % Understanding.” – Wise Mating: A Treatise on Monogamy

In this talk, Neuroscientist and Author Abhijit Naskar discusses the qualities of love and illuminates the nature of a healthy romantic relationship.

 

Further Reading
Wise Mating: A Treatise on Monogamy, 2017

Meditation is a method-less act

I want you to do something today. I want you to get rid of all the things that you have heard about meditation so far – everything – all those things about focus, attention, sitting upright, closing your eyes, focusing on breathing, sound, this and that – everything – even the things that you have heard from me. Let’s try it shall we! Let’s start afresh. Let’s take a fresh look at meditation. What is Meditation? Forget everything you know about meditation and simply think. Meditation simply means – thinking over – to think over something – to put your whole attention on something without pressure – anything. That is the simplest explanation for meditation. Meditation is simply thinking over.

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Today meditation has become a kind of hectic practice where you sit upright and do a lot of breathing exercises, this and that – and they call it Raja Yoga, Vipassana or something else. They need to call it that way, because this way they can keep it mystical. And the more they can keep it mystical, the more they can gain from it. Simplifying it doesn’t make the whole business of yoga, meditation and all that, profitable, does it!

So let’s simplify it, shall we! Meditation has been proposed as a means to psychological well being – and that means usually comes along with specific methodologies. The Buddhists have their Vipassana technique – the Hindus have their Kundalini nonsense. I am calling it nonsense because of all the mysticism it brings along. The mystical advocates of all that kundalini stuff, truly believe that there are actual energy centers throughout the human spine, and by unlocking them one could attain glorious spiritual potential. The Hindus also call this method of unlocking the kundalini centers of chakras, Raja Yoga, as if its something supreme, and not an ordinary mental state to be attained by an ordinary human. So, when the very practice of Raja Yoga proposes the notion, that it is something not ordinary, and basically unattainable without a teacher – that it is something higher than normal human practice, you naturally feel like you are supposed to go to an expert. This makes it profitable. Hence rises countless spiritual institutions upon the edifice of the primitive elements of human mysticism.

Now let’s throw all that mysticism away and look without judgement and preconceived mystical illusions of intellect. Meditation simply means focusing on something, thinking over something. Now the question is, do we need to sit upright and practise meditation the conventional way – closing our eyes, focusing on breathing or chanting or say Aum and going through a million other rituals! Is it necessary? Well, if it suits your taste then of course it’s okay – nobody is condemning it. It will bring you obvious health benefits, surely. But it’s only the way of the novice, also the most robotic way. Meditation means thinking over. But think over what? Do you have something to think over – something that you’d just think over, simply to take the pleasure from it – to simply be yourself in it – anything – a practice, a habit, a hobby, an idea, anything – something you can think over without any pressure of technicality, ritual or norms – that you can pay your whole attention to, simply because you love it, not because some great so-called guru tells you to practise it or some great scientist tells you to practise it! Do you have something like that – do you – anything – painting, writing, going out for a walk of contemplation, filmmaking, photography – any human activity that you can engage yourself in, without all the pressure that comes along with the very term “method”!

When you love doing something, there is no method, there is no risk, there is no fear, there is no insecurity of failure, there is just doing it. You just love it and do it. Often we also use the term “passion”, but I think, the word “passion” is a petty human attempt to justify the activity in front of the society. Why do you need to justify it! You simply love it and you do it. When you love it and do it, you are basically meditating upon it. And when the humans have something they love to do, and they do it, which means meditate upon it, they give a certain amount of time from their daily schedule to that activity, not out of pressure, not out of the insecurity of psychological obscurity, not out of a revolting attitude against the social norms, but simply to be themselves in that activity. When you do that on a daily basis, or find time to do that every now and then, every week, you are basically engaging your brain almost in the same manner as anybody else does in practising the conventional way of meditation – sitting upright, closing their eyes and focusing within. The brain functionings in both cases are basically similar – and they bring the same kind of inner emotional stability, same kind of inner content more importantly – basically the same kind of internal well being, which is sustained in the long run, if you can simply do what you love to do on a regular basis. This way your brain goes through a kind of unique refreshment – that basically is the product of meditation – the simplest meditation – meditation upon the activity that allows you to be you.

Meditation is a method-less act – an act of contemplation – an act of being. And this contemplation or this being is not a buddhist thing, a hindu thing or a jewish thing – it is simply a human thing. No pranayama, vipassana or kabala has any kind of exclusive authority over meditation whatsoever. All these ways are merely the means of the novice to begin the journey. But the means is not the real act itself. Seeing the method of meditation as meditation itself, is like confusing the menu for the meal. The real journey takes place when there is no means whatsoever – when the self does not need to make efforts to be the self – that’s real meditation – the meditation where you simply are who you are and do not seek methods to attain a superficial state of mind.

If you find something you love and make that your profession, then you’ll never need to practise the conventional meditation in your life, in order to be psychologically well, because your very profession would be the best meditation for you. If you don’t exactly have that dream profession, then simply taking time out from your daily schedule to do what you love to do, would still be a better meditation for you than the conventional one. And if none of these is an option for you, then you can resort to the conventional form of methodical meditation. The final call on this matter, would be made by nobody else but you. But bear in mind, kids meditate on things, the adults meditate on the self. Meditation on the self is the highest form of true method-less meditation, for it brings self-awareness – which is beyond the everyday joy and sorrow. True meditation does not put you in control of your sorrow, rather it takes your mind beyond that very sorrow, as well as joy, into the kingdom of contentment – a kingdom without ideology – without cognitive extremes, such as radical rationalism, radical romanticism or radical emotionalism. In that kingdom, you simply are a human, with no name, no nationality, no tradition, no culture, no religion, no gender and no social image – simply a human.

(Simultaneously published on Goodreads.)

Further Reading

Abhijit Naskar, In Search of Divinity: Journey to The Kingdom of Conscience, 2017