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History, Culture and Literature

Mission :

Dr. Samani Chaitanya Prajna 

Dr. Samani Chaitanya Prajna

Present Post : Professor, Dept. of Jainology and Comparative Religion and Philosophy

Education : B.A. in Philosophy, M.A. in Jainology and Comparative Religion and Philosophy, JRF in Jainology and Prakrit and Ph.D. in Philosophy,

Research Area : Jainism, Asian Religions, Comparative Religion and Philosophy, Preksha Meditation and Yoga, Science of Living, Nonviolence, Sanskrit, and Prakrit Language and Literature

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Metaphysics, Epistemology and Logic

Mission :

Dr. Samani Chaitanya Prajna 

Dr. Samani Chaitanya Prajna

Present Post : Professor, Dept. of Jainology and Comparative Religion and Philosophy

Education : B.A. in Philosophy, M.A. in Jainology and Comparative Religion and Philosophy, JRF in Jainology and Prakrit and Ph.D. in Philosophy,

Research Area : Jainism, Asian Religions, Comparative Religion and Philosophy, Preksha Meditation and Yoga, Science of Living, Nonviolence, Sanskrit, and Prakrit Language and Literature

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Activities :

Current Projects :

Completed Projects :

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Science and Mathematics

Mission :

Chair

Dr. Samani Chaitanya Prajna 

Dr. Samani Chaitanya Prajna

Present Post : Professor, Dept. of Jainology and Comparative Religion and Philosophy

Education : B.A. in Philosophy, M.A. in Jainology and Comparative Religion and Philosophy, JRF in Jainology and Prakrit and Ph.D. in Philosophy,

Research Area : Jainism, Asian Religions, Comparative Religion and Philosophy, Preksha Meditation and Yoga, Science of Living, Nonviolence, Sanskrit, and Prakrit Language and Literature

Click Here to view Resume

Organisation

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Background

Jainism is one of the oldest religions and philosophical streams of the world. It was born and flourished with many other religions in India and has great influence on other religions. Jain philosophy encompasses all aspects of life. At personal level it enables one to keep healthy by dietary control and self discipline, mentally alert and peaceful by meditational techniques and provides methods to develop one’s consciousness to higher stage leading to enlightenment. At social level, Jain philosophy provides ways to live in harmony, not within human society but also amongst all living creatures through non violence, tolerance, forgiveness and by minimizing ones requirements.
As far as scientific content of Jainism is concerned, it was the first religion to propound non-creationism. It emphasized that the Universe is without beginning or end and it exists forever through its ‘svabhava’ (by natural laws). Its supreme tenet of ‘ahimsa’ (non-injury to all sorts of living beings from smallest insects to the most developed human beings) made its ancient scholars to study the biosphere thoroughly. It came very near to modern science as regards connection between organic and inorganic matter by venturing to predict some sort of living organism in earth-bodied, water-bodied, air-bodied and fire-bodied living organisms. Much of these practices are traditional, passed from one generation to the other or are taken from scriptures or propagated by Jain saints and have little proof of their effectiveness.
Human beings are the most evolved creatures on this planet. Brain is the centre of the human nervous system and is highly complex organ. It has virtually unlimited power to function to do. Its working, changes with environment and improvement with meditation and other religious practices are current areas of research across the globe. In the living brain, millions of nerve cells communicate with each other by emitting tiny electrical impulses. In this way, the brain is active night and day throughout one’s life. Brain neocortex is actively involved in emotion and social behaviour processing. With the mushrooming of the cortex, we started to entertain alternatives of our own rather than nature’s making. We can choose to enjoy fear. We can choose to make art of our loneliness. Most other animals have no such options. Affectively, we can choose to be angels or devils, and we can construct or deconstruct ideas at will. We can choose to present ourselves in ways that are different from the ways we truly feel.
Human beings are social animals, and the tenor of our social life is one of the most important influences on our mental health. Without positive, durable relationships, both our minds and our bodies fall apart. Our survival as a species similarly hinges on our capacity for social living. Social intelligence is the key to a satisfying life. Those people who are self aware and sensitive to others manage their affairs with wisdom and grace, even in adverse circumstance. It is claimed to be positively related to academic achievement, occupational success and satisfaction and emotional health and adjustment.
A rich supply of afferent projections from the association cortex in brain provides the amygdaloid complex with visual, somato-sensory, auditory and viscero-sensory information. In addition, the amygdaloid complex has dense, reciprocal connections with hypothalamus and several brainstem nuclei, which allow it to coordinate a wide range of autonomic responses. These anatomic pathways suggest that amygdala plays a role in mediating emotion, personality, and other psychological processes. Humans have the capacity to influence the electrochemical dynamics of their brains, by voluntarily changing the nature of their mental processes. Involuntary social brain consists of orbitofrontal cortex, superior temporal gyrus, amygdala thalami, hypo- and subthalamic areas and brainstem. Voluntary’ (or a self-driven) system originates in the premotor/frontal areas and leads through the motor cortex and pyramidal tract to the ventral brainstem. The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is implicated in executive control and working memory, whereas orbito-frontal cortex has been associated with emotional and affective processing. The right hemispheric system plays an executive role in modulating attention and vigilance in anxiety, especially in anxious arousal (e.g. panic and fear).
One of the important components of Jainism at personal level is meditation. In essence, meditation is an ancient Eastern tradition and its different forms are being practiced in most of the world’s religions. It is considered a way of life with various benefits. However, it was the teaching of religious gurus and was believed by his disciples and general public. Lack of physical evidences is responsible for its diminishing acceptance and popularity.
Meditation reverses the roles of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems so that the normally dominant sympathetic nervous system takes a back seat to the normally secondary parasympathetic nervous system. Over the last three decades, the study of brain function has witnessed a pivotal change with focus on localization of specialized brain areas and their functional networks.
Recent scientific research is trying to resolve many facts and doubts associated with meditation. Various modalities adopted to investigate meditation are psychosocial evidences (through questionnaire), biochemical and hormonal assays, imaging techniques (CT, fMRI, SPECT, PET, etc) and electrophysiological studies (EEG, evoked potentials, galvanic skin resistance, etc). All these techniques have their own merits and limitations. Identifying these changes with modern techniques will provide a physical model to meditation.
Many studies over past three decades have demonstrated direct, positive, physiological and psychological long term changes as a result of practicing meditation. Benefits have been demonstrated even with short term practice meditation. Studies on meditation have linked positive therapeutic impact on many diseases such as chronic pain, cardiovascular diseases, obsessive compulsive disorders, anxiety and panic disorder, dermatological disorders and symptoms of distress for cancer patients. Several investigations have been made on Preksha Meditation (PM) too. The results acquired by these studies reveals that PM too has optimistic impact on human body and mind. Positive benefits have been recorded for cardiac and respiratory variables and cardiovascular functions and blood profile. PM has been beneficial in many aspects of emotional and mental health. PM have also shown to have therapeutic benefits on many diseases such as diabetes, anxiety, delinquent behavior, adolescent and childhood asthma. Thus many of the personal, social, environmental and international problems can be resolved by taking recourse to Jainism.
Inspite of many studies in India and abroad, systematic and scientific studies demonstrating the qualitative and quantitative change in brain are lacking. Different components of meditation and other religious practices on brain functions and on other body systems have not been adequately addressed. In addition there is a need for standarisation of meditation techniques and recording of data. Thus it is essential to document scientifically the effects of the Jain practices in the modern language to be acceptable. There is an urgent need to start study and research initiative on Jainology and make its benefits available to the mankind. We must plan for an organized research on scientific lines on various spheres of Jainology, reinterpret them in current colloquial language, bring out their benefits in a quantitative way, apply them in daily life and compare them with concepts in science, using modern scientific tools.
There are a large number of manuscripts on mathematics and science awaiting light of the day. Jain Vishva Bharati, with a rich Library on Indology and Jainology is willing to undertake research in Jain Mathematics and Science on the backdrop of contemporary science and modern science. It can garner suitable faculty for guiding such research by virtue of its contacts for its existing programmes.

Activities :

MOU

Area of Research

Literature review

  • Evolution of animal kingdom including human;
  • Evolution of brain across the ages
  • View of Jainism vs Darwin and other current scientific knowledge
  • Concept of brain and mind in religion and current scientific perspective
  • Comparative study of different types of meditation etc.


Aging

  • Evolution theories of aging;
  • Aging in human across the globe in historical perspective


Meditation

    comparative study of different types of meditation etc


Experimental Research

Assessment of brain and other body functions is based physiological (EEG, autonomic, ECG, Respiratory etc), psychological, imaging (fMRI, SPECTS, Doppler blood flow studies etc), biochemical and hormonal parameters, and genetic studies. Initially we will concentrate on electrophysiological including autonomic functions and psychological functions.
A modern laboratory facility will be set up during 2015-2018 .The Laboratory building will be provided by JVBI but it has to be converted into a laboratory by making it dust proof, temperature control etc. Three labs are envisaged for biology, medical science, and bio-chemistry. Only elementary instruments which are commonly used will be set up in these laboratories for use by scholars. More advanced machines will be used in other institutions, wherever they are available on payment basis.


A. Subjects of study:

      1. Regular camps for 7-10 days for Preksha meditation are held at JVBI complex. These subjects will be evaluated for “Short Term Effects of Meditation”.
      2. Students of Kalu Kanya Mahavidyalaya will be motivated for PM training and will be evaluated for “Effects of Meditation at 2 and 4 Months”.
      3. Expert meditators e.g. teachers of meditation.
      4. Meditation done at centres outside Ladnun


Suggested Areas of Research

      1. Physiological and psychological effects of penances and meditation.
      2. Disease oriented camps and evaluation of results.

Efficacy of Preksha Meditation on healthy volunteers.

    1. To study the effect of Preksha Meditation on Physiological parameters.
    2. To study the effect of Preksha Meditation on Bio-chemical parameters.
    3. To study the effect of Preksha Meditation on Neurophysiological parameters.
    4. To study the effect of Preksha Meditation on hormonal profile.
    5. To study the effect of Preksha Meditation on Psychological parameters.
    6. To study interrelationship between Sleep, Behaviour and Preksha Meditation.
    7. To study interrelationship between Preksha Meditation, Nutrition, Fasting, Life style and Health.
    8. Some of the projects may be as below:
    1. To study short term effects of Preksha Meditation on EEG & GSR: It will be extended with analysis of alpha, theta, beta and gamma waves.
    2. To study EEG while doing Preksha Meditation: It will be extended with analysis of alpha, theta, beta and gamma waves.
    3. To study long term effects of Preksha Meditation on EEG & GSR: It will be extended with analysis of alpha, theta, beta and gamma waves.
    4. To study long term effects of Preksha Meditation on EMG & Evoked potentials
    5. Training of research scholar and technician on different machines
    6. To study short term and long term effects of Preksha Meditation on various psychosocial functions
    7. To study effects of Preksha Meditation on biochemical and hormonal parameters: e.g. conventional biochemistry, cortisol, DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone), melatonin, serotonin, growth hormone, insulin and thyroid hormones.
    8. Benefits of meditation on diseases:
  1. Somatic diseases: e.g. sleep disturbances, headache, intelligence, control of hypertension & reversal of atherosclerosis, control of diabetes, respiratory diseases, irritable bowel syndrome
  2. Psychological disorders: behavioural problems, stress related problems, inadequate school performance, inadequate job performance


Projects under consideration

      1. Enhancing Ahimsa & Peaceful Coexistence Through Spiritual Practices: I. Psycho-biological Studies to Investigate Effects of Yoga and Preksha Dhyan on Aggressiveness and Academic Performance of School Children
      2. Preksha Meditation and Health of Elderly
      3. To Review Karma Theory using Scientific Methodology of Radionics


Guidelines & Performa for Research

Current Projects :

Completed Projects :

Link to publications :

Jain Ethics, Environment and Social Science

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