How is it possible to say that truth can be of one kind at the conventional level and totally different in the ultimate plane? As Matilal ( 1971 , p. 154) points out, Kumārila (ca. 600–650), a Mīmāṃsaka philosopher, claims that the Buddhist doctrine of two truths is “a kind of philosophical ‘double-talk’.” It is Prajñākaragupta (ca. 750–810), a Buddhist logician, who tries to give a direct answer to this question posed by Kumārila from the Buddhist side. He argues that (...) even a Mīmāṃsaka cannot demonstrate the validity ( prāmāṇya ) of the Veda without accepting two truth levels. His point is this. Consider the proposition to be proved: the Veda is valid. If the Veda is already known as valid, then it is useless to prove this proposition. But if it is already known as invalid, then it is impossible to prove this proposition. Therefore in the argument to prove the proposition, the Veda is not to be regarded either as valid or as invalid. This means that at the first stage of the argument one has the concept of the Veda as neutral in validity. However, as soon as one acquires the knowledge of the Veda as valid through the argument, one has to repudiate such a conception of the Veda. The acceptance of the Veda as neutral in validity is to the acceptance of the Veda as valid as the conventional truth is to the ultimate truth. (shrink)
In a rare book published in Trivandrum (1927), entitled Sphoṭasiddhiḥ Bharatamiśrapranītā , we find an interesting argument in defense of sphoṭa -theory, based on āgamic quotations, especially RV X, 71, 4 (the stanza where the poet describes his own activity in perceiving the essence of Speech as like a beloved woman naked). The main idea is that the numerous word sphoṭas , as an atemporal multiplicity, free from any sensuous quality, were the objects of the Ṛṣis’ primordial intuition. So the (...) internal diversity of the Veda is not a mere subjective convention in order to adapt the highest truth to limited human minds. The absolute brahman has an objective cosmogonical power of which the temporal mutiplicity is only the very last result. There is also an intermediate ideal multiplicity, which the Veda, as eternal and transcending the guru-śiṣya transmission, consists in. (shrink)
Resumo Buscamos compreender o contexto socio-histórico (ética e visão de mundo) do vaishnavismo, bem como, de forma resumida, as principais fontes e ideias teológicas, seu espaço, sua origem, seus precursores, suas divindades, suas práticas e, por fim, sua gama literária inserida na tradição indiana (ou parte integrante do que hoje se conhece como hinduísmo) e de forma latente nos ancestrais textos védicos. Tivemos como prerrogativa objetiva e sinteticamente caracterizada a análise da devoção incondicional ao deus Krishna por uma religião inserida (...) em um contexto sociocultural marcado pelo politeísmo. Chegamos à compreensão de que essa tradição religios a volta-se para a devoção de um deus multifacetado, possuindo raízes históricas envoltas na ortodoxia brahmânica, ou seja, na milenar concepção de que os brahmanas (mestres) são os agentes sociais capazes de orientar toda a sociedade para o além-mundo. Além disso, o mais proeminente desses mestres foi, com certeza, aquele que é considerado uma encarnação direta de deus, Caitanya. O vaishnavismo promulgado por Caitanya redescobriu uma prática mística originária dos antigos bhagavatas, unida com a regulação do rito orgiástico, presente em toda a Índia desde tempos imemoriais. Palavras-chave: Vaishnavismo; Hinduísmo; Veda; Krishna; Caitanya.We attempt to understand the socio-historical context (ethics and world vision) of Vaishnavism, as well as, in a summarized way, its main sources and theological ideas, space, origin, precursors, divinities, practices, and, finally, its literature, embedded in the Indian tradition (or part of what is known today as Hinduism) and latently in ancestral Vedic texts. Our objective is the analysis of the unconditional devotion to god Krishna from a religion inserted in a notably polytheistic socio-cultural context. We have concluded that this religious tradition dedicates itself to the worship of a multifaceted god, historically rooted in Brahman orthodoxy, that is, in the millenarian conception that the Brahmans (masters) are social agents capable of leading all society towards the world beyond. Moreover, the most prominent among these masters was certainly the one considered God's direct incarnation: Caitanya. The Vaishnavism propagated by Caitanya rediscovered a mystic practice originated from the ancient Bhagavatas, blended with the regulation of the orgiastic rite, present all over India since immemorial times. Key words: Vaishnavism; Hinduism; Veda; Krishna; Caitanya. (shrink)
v. 1. God, religion, and philosophy; a historical retrospect. 2d ed. 1971.--v. 2. Purushka and prakrita (God and nature). 1st ed. 1968.--v. 3. God and man (nara and Narayan). 1st ed. 1974.--v. 4. Thought; gems in verse: sayings of great saints and thinkers of India. 1st ed. 1975.--v. 5. Truths stranger than fiction. 1st ed.
The question as to whether the Vedas have an author is the topic of vivid polemics in Indian philosophy. The aim of this paper is to reconstruct the classical Sāṁkhya view on the authorship of the Vedas. The research is based chiefly on the commentaries to the Sāṁkhyakārikā definition of authoritative verbal testimony given by the classical Sāṁkhya writers, for these fragments provide the main evidence (both direct and indirect) for the reconstruction of this view. The textual analysis presented in (...) this paper leads to the following conclusion. According to most classical Sāṁkhya commentaries, the Vedas have no author. Two commentators state directly that the Vedas have no author, and four commentators allude to the authorlessness of the Vedas. Only one commentator seems to hold the opposite view, stating that all the authoritative utterances are based on perception or inference of imperceptible objects by authoritative persons, from which it follows that the Vedas too have an author or authors. (shrink)
Los ciclos de la naturaleza han marcado profundamente tanto la cosmovisión reflejada en los himnos védicos como el desarrollo del ritualismo brahmánico. Siguiendo un progresivo proceso de abstracción, el hombre asocia cada vez más su destino a estos ciclos cósmicos lo que conduce a la doctrina de la transmigración de las almas.
The idea of nothingness has been viewed as neither a vital nor a positive element in Western philosophy or theology. With the exception of a handful of mystics, nothingness has been taken to refer to the negation of being, or to some theoretical void. By contrast, the Japanese philosopher Nishida Kitarō gave nothingness a central role in philosophy. The strategy of this essay is to use the German mystic Meister Eckhart as a more familiar thinker who did take nothingness seriously, (...) and then to look closely at Nishida’s philosophy, and at the work of his contemporary Ueda Shizuteru, in exploring the central importance of nothingness in Zen Buddhist thought. Eckhart writes of the nothingness of the godhead, whereas Nishida and Ueda speak of nothingness “pure and simple.” Eckhart remains within the being of the godhead and theology. Nishida moves directly to nothingness. Some have claimed that Nishida is not a mystic, and Nishida himself concurred, yet it is Ueda who explains why Nishida can rightly be read as a mystic and as not a mystic. He argues that Zen includes mysticism, but then goes beyond it to a “non-mysticism.” Mystic or non-mystic, the guidance that Nishida and Ueda offer leads to a compelling outlook on life. (shrink)
One of yoga's most important and influential works, The Yoga Sutras of Patañjali forms a keystone of Indian philosophical and religious thought. This translation by a Harvard professor ranks among the most acclaimed interpretations of Patañjali's work. The eight-step path to Raja Yoga consists of restraint, observances, posture, breath control, sublimation, attention, concentration, and meditation. This volume contains complete sutras, along with a commentary by Veda-Vyasa and explanations by Vachaspati-Miçra, plus background information provided by the translator's introduction and appendixes. (...) Unabridged republication of the classic 1927 edition. (shrink)
This article explores the way in which Madhva (1238–1317), the founder of the Dvaita Vedānta system of Hindu thought, reformulates the traditional exegetic practice of nirukta or “word derivation” to validate his pluralistic, hierarchical, and Vaiṣṇava reading of the Ṛgvedic hymns. Madhva’s Ṛgbhāṣya (RB) is conspicuous for its heavy reliance on and unique deployment of this exegetical tactic to validate several key features of his distinctive theology. These features include his belief in Viṣṇu’s unique possession of all perfect attributes (guṇaparipūrṇatva) (...) and His related conveyability by all Vedic words (sarvaśabdavācyatva). Such an understanding of Vedic language invokes the basic nirukta presupposition that words are eternally affiliated with the meanings they convey. But it is also based onMadhva’s access to a lexicon entitled Vyāsa’s Nirukti with which his critics and perhaps even his commentators seem to be unfamiliar.While the precise status of this text is the subject of ongoing debate, Madhva’s possession of special insight into the sacred canon is established in part by his unique claim to be an avatāra of the wind god Vāyu and a direct disciple of Viṣṇu Himself in the form of Vyāsa1. Thus, Madhva’s use of nirukta invokes his personal charisma to challenge not only conventional understandings of the hymns but traditional exegetic norms. Madhva’s provision of an alternative tradition of nirukta provoked sectarian debate throughout the Vijayanagara period over the extent to which one could innovate in established practices of reading the Veda. Articulating the Veda’s precise authority was a key feature of Brahmin debates during this period and reflects both the empire’s concern with promoting a shared religious ideology and the competition among rival Brahman sects for imperial patronage that this concern elicited. By looking at how two of Madhva’s most important commentators (the 14th-century Jayatīrtha and the 17th-century Rāghavendra) sought to defend his niruktis, this article will explore how notions of normative nirukta were articulated in response to Madhva’s deviations. At the same time, however, examining Madhva’s commentators’ defense of his niruktis also demonstrates the extent to which Madhva actually adhered to selected exegetic norms. This reveals that discomfort with Madhva’s particular methods for deriving words stemmed, in part, from a more general ambivalence towards this exegetical tactic whose inherent open-endedness threatened to undermine the fixity of the canon’s very substance: its language. (shrink)
The apologetic method of the Nyāya is inductive. The subject is distilled from the scripture and the Nyāya investigates it through logical argument. Through this procedure of partial verification, the reliability of the composer is established, and consequently the authority of the entire scripture is justified. The domains of thescripture and rational investigation overlap in significant issues such as the reality of the Self, and therefore, they can cooperate to establish the common truth. In Mīmāṃsā apologetics, the domain of the (...) scripture and that of rational argument are mutually exclusive. Their apologetic program is basically accomplished as a process of purely rational investigation without referring to the content of the scripture. But at the same time, the authority of the Veda is regarded as innate and has no external basis. Working autonomously, the rational investigation imposes its own limitation from within and thereby secures the scriptural domain that is free from the intervention of any other kind of knowledge. The overlap between the domains of the scripture and the ordinary experience including rational investigation constitutes a necessary condition for the Nyāya apologetics, whereas in Mīmāṃsā apologetics, it is the absence of the overlapping domain that assures the unique authority of the Veda. This difference is supposed to be rooted in their disagreement on whether a man is able, or qualified, to examine the content of the scripture or not. (shrink)
Bhartṛhari was not only a clever and well-informed philosopher but also a conservative Brahmin who maintained his own tradition's superiority against the philosophies developed in his time. He exploited a problem that occupied all his philosophical contemporaries to promote his own ideas, in which the Veda played a central role. Bhartṛhari and his thought are situated in their intellectual context. As it turns out, he dealt with issues that others had dealt with before him in India and suggested solutions (...) to existing problems. Indeed, it becomes clear that he was both a philosopher who dealt with current problems and challenges and a traditionalist who used the philosophical debate of his time to try to gain respectability for his own Vedic tradition. (shrink)
The compound “Hindu philosophy” is ambiguous. Minimally it stands for a tradition of Indian philosophical thinking. However, it could be interpreted as designating one comprehensive philosophical doctrine, shared by all Hindu thinkers. The term “Hindu philosophy” is often used loosely in this philosophical or doctrinal sense, but this usage is misleading. There is no single, comprehensive philosophical doctrine shared by all Hindus that distinguishes their view from contrary philosophical views associated with other Indian religious movements such as Buddhism or Jainism (...) on issues of epistemology, metaphysics, logic, ethics or cosmology. Hence, historians of Indian philosophy typically understand the term “Hindu philosophy” as standing for the collection of philosophical views that share a textual connection to certain core Hindu religious texts (such as the Vedas), and they do not identify “Hindu philosophy” with a particular comprehensive philosophical doctrine. -/- Hindu philosophy, thus understood, not only includes the philosophical doctrines present in Hindu texts of primary and secondary religious importance, but also the systematic philosophies of the Hindu schools: Nyāya, Vaiśeṣika, Sāṅkhya, Yoga, Pūrvamīmāṃsā and Vedānta. In total, Hindu philosophy has made a sizable contribution to the history of Indian philosophy and its role has been far from static: Hindu philosophy was influenced by Buddhist and Jain philosophies, and in turn Hindu philosophy influenced Buddhist philosophy in India in its later stages. In recent times, Hindu philosophy evolved into what some scholars call “Neo-Hinduism,” which can be understood as an Indian response to the perceived sectarianism and scientism of the West. Hindu philosophy thus has a long history, stretching back from the second millennia B.C.E. to the present. (shrink)
V kontextu české filosofie, kde není nouze o vzdělané a chytré lidi, ale kde se to nijak nehemží skutečnými individualitami, představuje Petr Vopěnka zcela zvláštní případ. Je matematik nejenom vzděláním, ale v matematice i leccos dokázal. Jeho knihy o filosofii matematiky, zejména jeho tetralogie Rozprav s geometrií1, jsou velice vyhraněné: Vopěnka v nich předkládá svůj originální obraz a příliš se nestará o to, aby ho konfrontoval s tím, co si o tom myslí jiní. Jak sám připouští, i historické osoby, o (...) kterých ve svých knihách píše, mu slouží spíše jako kompars, na jehož pozadí rozehrává svá barvitá líčení ‚dobrodružství poznání‘. Vopěnka ve svých knihách protestuje proti tomu, že moderní věda do obrazu světa, který buduje, vůbec nevpustila tak zásadní determinanty našeho přirozeného světa, jakými jsou neostrost či existence horizontu, který činní náš obraz světa v jistém smyslu ‘nehomogenní‘. Proti tomu se samozřejmě nabízí námitka, že to je v podstatě věci, že vědecký obraz světa je svou podstatou ostrý a homogenní. Že chtít po něm, aby byl jiný, pramení pouze z nepochopení jeho povahy a hlavně jeho role: neboť svět vykreslovaný vědou má být světem pouze v metaforickém slova smyslu, je jenom jakýmsi ‚orientačním plánkem‘, který nám má pomoci orientovat se ve světě ‚přirozeném‘. (Tím ovšem nechci říci, že by tohle nepochopení nebylo fakticky dosti rozšířené.) Vopěnka však ukazuje, že vědu, zejména matematiku, by bylo možné dělat i jinak, než jak se to považuje za víceméně samozřejmé: že je možné vytvořit matematizovaný obraz světa, ze kterého nejsou neostrost či horizont vymeteny. (I tento obraz si samozřejmě zachovává jistý druh ostrosti a homogenity, která z něj činí něco kvalitativně odlišného od přirozeného světa, avšak k přirozenému světu má blíže než ten standardní.) Tento jeho návrh je velice originální a pozoruhodný a je škoda, že mu není věnována větší pozornost a není předmětem soustavnější diskuse, ve které by se ověřila jeho nosnost. Originalita.. (shrink)
Ātman (soul) and Nairātmya (no soul) are, for the Brahmanical schools and the Buddhists respectively, equally fundamental tenets which neither side can concede to the other. Among the 16 formulations presented by Uddyotakara, the fifteenth, which is a proof of Ātman and is originally an indirect proof ( avīta/āvīta ), is presented in a prasaṅga -style, and contains double negation ( na nairātmyam ) in the thesis. However, it is perhaps Dharmakīrti who first transformed it into a normal style ( (...) sātmakam ). He is well aware of the law of excluded middle, and insisits that the negation is paryudāsa . On the Nyāya side, Uddyotakara at least seems to be unaware of the law of the logical equivalence of contraposition concerning pervasion ( vyāpti ). After Uddyotakara, however, Vyoman (Vyomaśiva), Bhāsarvajña and Vācaspatimiśra, all seem to be well aware of it. Dharmakīrti, in his conter-argument against the proof of ātman , discusses the negative expressions ‘‘ nairātmya ” and ‘‘ a-nairātmya ” Dharmakīrti here uses two logical arguments skillfully and tactically. As a critic of both the authenticity of the Veda and the existence of ātman , he insists on the theory of dichotomy and the equivalence of anvaya and vyatireka , whereas as an apologist he denies the application of these theories to the relation between the existence of ātman and the concept of nairātmya , because for him as a Buddhist the latter is not a negative but essentially positive state of affairs. (shrink)
Podíváme-li se na rané Platónovy dialogy, vidíme, že o co v nich jde především, je předvedení toho, že pojmy mají relativně jasné hranice, že zdánlivému chaosu užívání slov vládne jistý pevný řád, který si člověk dokáže i explicitně uvědomit, je-li k tomu vhodným způsobem veden. Snaha o zdůraznění a znázornění tohoto na první pohled neviditelného 'řádu v chaosu' pak podle mého názoru postupně vedla i ke konstituci Platónovy mytologie říše idejí, které, ač neviděny, hrají z hlediska viditelného světa klíčovou roli. (...) Skrytý řád přítomný ve zjevném chaosu je vykreslen jako participace (methexis) věcí zjevného světa na idejích světa neviditelného. A již Aristotelés poukázal na to, že tato mytologie, jakkoli může být její spektakulárnost užitečná v kontextu nedoceňování existence řádu, může být naopak velice zavádějící, jestliže ji začneme brát jako více než právě mytologii; konkrétně jestliže začneme zapomínat, že 'platónský svět idejí' dává smysl pouze jako nástroj porozumění či výkladu toho světa, ve kterém žijeme, a začneme ho vidět jako něco skutečnějšího, než je svět zjevný. Zdá se mi tedy, že platonismus se ve filosofii dostává ke slovu jako antidotum vždy tehdy, když dochází k absolutizaci 'chaotického aspektu' světa (to jest když je svět vykládán jako něco, co jakýkoli řád postrádá - ať už to má podobu herakleitovského absolutizace pomíjivosti, romantického zdůraznění nevázanosti a iracionality, či postmoderní akcentuace různorodosti a nesouměřitelnosti). Na druhé straně platonismus sám svádí k absolutizaci 'řádu' (před Platónem zosobňovaným zejména parmeninovským popřením jakékoli proměnlivosti, a později pak nabývají podob třeba racionalistického výkladu světa jako vtěleného rozumu nebo moderního scientistichého názoru, podle kterého je mírou všech věcí věda). Existují ideje ve své 'platónské říši' doopravdy? Odpověď na tuto otázku je ovšem podstatným způsobem ovlivněna tím, jak rozumíme termínu "existovat" (nemluvě o slově "doopravdy").. (shrink)
Il presente scritto e’ attualmante inedito. Per una versione in lingua inglese si veda Stefano Franchi, "Palomar, The Triviality of Modernity, and the Doctrine of the Void,” New Literary History, 28 (1997), 4, 757-778. Si prega di non citare da questa versione senza previa autorizzazione.
Television advertisements depicting the use of electronic cigarettes have recently exposed minors to images of smoking behaviors. While these advertisements are currently legal, existing laws should be interpreted or expanded to ban the commercial depiction of smoking behaviors with any product that resembles a cigarette to shield minors from potentially influential advertising.