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Profile: Matthew Dasti (Bridgewater State College)
  1. Matthew R. Dasti (forthcoming). Skepticism in Classical Indian Philosophy. In Diego Machuca & Baron Reed (eds.), Skepticism from Antiquity to the Present.
    There are some tantalizing suggestions that Pyrrhonian skepticism has its roots in ancient India. Of them, the most important is Diogenes Laertius’s report that Pyrrho accompanied Alexander to India, where he was deeply impressed by the character of the “naked sophists” he encountered (DL IX 61). Influenced by these gymnosophists, Pyrrho is said to have adopted the practices of suspending judgment on matters of belief and cultivating an indifferent composure amid the vicissitudes of ordinary life. Such conduct, and the attitudes (...)
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  2. Matthew R. Dasti (forthcoming). Vatsyayana: Cognition as a Guide to Action. In Jonardon Ganeri (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Indian Philosophy.
    Pakṣilasvāmin Vātsyāyana (c. 450 CE) is the author of the Commentary on Nyāya (Nyāya-bhāṣya), the first full commentary on the Nyāya-sūtra of Gautama (c. 150 CE), which is itself the foundational text of the school of philosophy called “Nyāya.” The Nyāya tradition is home to a number of leading voices within the classical Indian philosophical scene and is celebrated in later doxographies as one of the six “orthodox” systems of Hindu thought. Given the way that sūtra texts and their first (...)
     
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  3. Matthew R. Dasti (2014). Nyāya's Self as Agent and Knower. In Matthew R. Dasti & Edwin F. Bryant (eds.), Free will, Agency, and Selfhood in Indian Philosophy. Oxford University Press. 112.
    Much of classical Hindu thought has centered on the question of self: what is it, how does it relate to various features of the world, and how may we benefit by realizing its depths? Attempting to gain a conceptual foothold on selfhood, Hindu thinkers commonly suggest that its distinctive feature is consciousness (caitanya). Well-worn metaphors compare the self to light as its awareness illumines the world of knowable objects. Consciousness becomes a touchstone to recognize the presence of a self. A (...)
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  4. Matthew R. Dasti & Edwin F. Bryant (eds.) (2014). Free Will, Agency, and Selfhood in Indian Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
    If one were to make a list of the leading topics of debate in classical Indian philosophy, contenders might include the existence and nature of the self; the fundamental sources of knowledge; the nature of the engagement between consciousness and reality; the existence and nature of God/Brahman; the proper account of causation; the relationship between language and the world; the practices that best ensure future happiness; the most expedient method for any soteriological attainment (or not); or the fundamental constituents of (...)
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  5. Matthew R. Dasti (2013). Divine Self, Human Self by Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad (Bloomsbury 2013). [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 1 (1):1.
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  6. Matthew R. Dasti (2013). Systematizing Nyāya. [REVIEW] Philosophy East and West 63 (4):617-637.
    An ongoing effort, exemplified though happily not exhausted in the work of B. K. Matilal, is to present the best of classical Indian philosophy in a way that speaks to contemporary philosophical concerns, while still being historically and philologically responsible. Epistemology in Classical India: The Knowledge Sources of the Nyāya School by Stephen Phillips is expressly this kind of work. Phillips begins by explaining that his book is “for philosophers and students of philosophy, not for specialists in classical Indian thought” (...)
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  7. Matthew R. Dasti, The Six Systems. Oxford Bibliographies Online.
    This is a select annotated bibliography of literature on the famous Six Systems of orthodox Hindu philosophy.
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  8. Matthew R. Dasti, Nyāya. The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    This is an overview of the Nyaya ("Logic") school of classical Indian philosophy, focusing on the earlier period (up to roughly 1000 CE).
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  9. Matthew R. Dasti (2012). Parasitism and Disjunctivism in Nyāya Epistemology. Philosophy East and West 62 (1):1-15.
    From the early modern period, Western epistemologists have often been concerned with a rigorous notion of epistemic justification, epitomized in the work of Descartes: properly held beliefs require insulation from extreme skepticism. To the degree that veridical cognitive states may be indistinguishable from non-veridical states, apparently veridical states cannot enjoy high-grade positive epistemic status. Therefore, a good believer begins from what are taken to be neutral, subjective experiences and reasons outward—hopefully identifying the kinds of appearances that properly link up to (...)
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  10. Matthew R. Dasti (2012). An Introduction to Indian Philosophy by Bina Gupta (Routledge 2012). [REVIEW] Religious Studies Review 38 (3):190.
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  11. Matthew R. Dasti (2012). Theism in Asian Philosophy. In C. Taliaferro, V. Harrison & S. Goetz (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Theism. Routledge.
    This paper examines of the intersection of theism and philosophy in classical Indian thought, focusing on the rational theology of Nyaya and the revealed theology of Vedanta. I also consider anti-theistic arguments, primarily by classical Buddhists.
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  12. Matthew R. Dasti (2011). Indian Rational Theology: Proof, Justification, and Epistemic Liberality in Nyāya's Argument for God. Asian Philosophy 21 (1):1-21.
    In classical India, debates over rational theology naturally become the occasion for fundamental questions about the scope and power of inference itself. This is well evinced in the classical proofs for God by the Hindu Nyāya tradition and the opposing arguments of classical Buddhists and Mīmāsā philosophers. This paper calls attention to, and provides analysis of, a number of key nodes in these debates, particularly questions of inferential boundaries and whether inductive reasoning has the power to support inferences to wholly (...)
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  13. Matthew R. Dasti (2010). Against a Hindu God by Parimal G. Patil (Columbia University Press 2009). [REVIEW] Journal of Asian Studies.
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  14. Matthew R. Dasti (2010). The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali by Edwin Bryant (North Point Press 2009). [REVIEW] Journal of Vaishnava Studies.
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  15. Matthew R. Dasti (2009). When Knowledge Meets Devotion, by Ravi Gupta (Routledge 2007). [REVIEW] Sophia 48 (3):335-337.
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  16. Matthew R. Dasti (2009). Meets Devotion. Sophia 48 (3):335-337.
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  17. Matthew R. Dasti (2008). Testimony, Belief Transfer, and Causal Irrelevance: Reflections From India's Nyaya School. History of Philosophy Quarterly 25 (4):281-299.
    Recent studies of Nyäya’s account of testimony have illustrated its anticipation of contemporary testimonial antireductionism, the position that testimony cannot be reduced to a more fundamental means of knowledge like inference or perception. This paper discusses another relevant but less discussed anticipation of current debate, involving the status of speaker belief in testimonial exchange. Is a speaker’s veridical apprehension of the content of his utterance a necessary condition on testimonial exchange? This was a source of much disputation among Indian epistemologists, (...)
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  18. Matthew R. Dasti (2007). The Crito's Integrity. Apeiron 40 (2):123 - 140.
    This paper argues that the two halves of the Crito, the earlier "dialectical" half and the later "rhetorical" half form a unified whole.
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