Relational Universalism by Sudeep Adhikari

Book Review by Wayne F. Burke

Sudeep Adhikari

283 pages
Price $15.00
Printed in the USA

     Sudeep Adhikari is an engineering consultant by trade and poet by proclivity. He lays down a heavy rap; a long and mostly fascinating rap, delving into mysteries of existence, origins, and creation, while considering complex systems, economic, psychologic, societal, technologic, etc. He attempts to explicate meaning of life, cosmos, and consciousness through a multi-disciplinary approach (philosophic, artistic, spiritual, scientific-religious). In the attempt offering “Relational Universalism,” a “philosophical,” he writes, rather than “scientific” theory—relational not atomic, a “convoluted and relational whole.” Offering a new paradigm, in fact; one of holistic approach in response to failures of traditional scientific and religious modes of thinking. Those old causual, reductionistic, mechanistic paradigms (Cartesian, Newtonian, Euclidian) inadequate, Sudeep claims, in explication of life, cosmos, or consciousness.
     The false paradigms (Cartesian, etc.) of duality have duped us, Sudeep suggests. “Straight-jacketed” out presumptions into reductionistic, linear, and causualistic thinking. The dualism of these out-molded paradigms mistakenly viewing, Sudeep argues, mind and body as separate, instead of interconnected. The proposition of Relational Universalism means a switch from the linear-causualistic outlook to a more relational world-view. A world-view more holistic, dynamic, and processorial than the world-view of dualistic paradigms, thus, a more truthful or more exact reflection of life, cosmos, or consciousness.

     Consciousness one of the complex systems, economic, societal, environmental, technological, etc., Sudeep considers, stating that consciousness cannot be comprehended in totality through current scientific methodology. He offers his own relational definition of the noumenon, speaking as much as poet as engineer: “a process, a becoming, an ever proliferation; a coexistence of convergence and divergence, a mobious-strip…inexact whole, plural category, that creates, recreates, destructs, deconstructs, dissipates…an incomprehensible rhizomatic fuzz of randomness, chaos, and multiplicity.”

Wayne F. Burke
     Each complex system (several already named) has its day in court; that is, approached relationally. No answers to age old perplexities are found here. What is found are new questions to ask, more relevant ones than the old in addressing the flux of “life” in all permutations.

     Sudeep has written an intriguing book, erudite, unquestionably broad in scope-- ancient Greece to modernity, and of great depth (though as a non-science person, I cannot, with much confidence, judge exact depth). This is expository prose, utilitarian, freighted with technical terminology, and some tidbits of personal information. Unavoidably dry at times (for this reader), but even during the most abstruse considerations, the narrative unfaltering.

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