Classical Indian Metaphysics 

Item Code: IDD372
Author: Stephen H. Phillips
Language: English
Edition: 1997
ISBN: 8120814894
Pages: 405
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 8.5" x 5.6"
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Book Description

About the Book

This book opens the door, for all lovers of philosophy to the latest and most sophisticated discussions of classical Indian thought. Classical Indian Metaphysics has been designed so that it can be read by the student who knows little about classical Indian traditions, as well as the specialist in Indian philosophy. 

Classical Indian Metaphysics is an introduction to classical Indian metaphysics in general, with a special focus on New Logic and its responses to idealist dialectical attacks. It comprises two wide-ranging introductory chapters covering the earliest periods of Indian thought, two chapters discussing metaphysical arguments within late classical debates, and a final chapter providing translations of key passages from late texts. 

"Readable, clear, and helpful. This book will e recognized as an important contribution to the exposition and interpretation of Indian philosophy, and well go a long way towards removing that misunderstanding of Indian philosophy which is widely pervasive".

-J.N. Mohanty
Temple University

"Classical Indian Metaphysics is a carefully constructed, well-written, and extremely valuable discussion in Indian metaphysics which focuses on the enduring philosophy debate between 'idealists' and 'realists', represented here in the Indian tradition of , respectively, the twelfth-century Advaitin dialectician Sriharsa and by leading figures in the school of Nyaya ('Logic') and Navya-Navya ('New Logic') which developed from the fourteenth century to the present.

"Designed both for general philosophical readers and for specialists in Indian thought, the work sets forth in a highly readable an concise manner the principal arguments put forward by the leading proponents in the debate and sets these within the long history of Indian philosophy going back to the Upanishads and the teachings of Buddhism. About half the book is given to annotated translations of select passages from key texts, which is certainly one of the more important features of this excellent study."

-Eliot Deutsch
University of Hawaii

About the Author

Stephen Phillips is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas at Austin. He has received a Full bright and other fellowships for the study of Indian philosophies and has been Visiting Professor of Philosophy at the University of Hawaii. Professor Phillips is author of Aurobindo's Philosophy of Brahman (1986) and editor of Philosophy of Religion : A Global Approach (1995). He has published numerous scholarly papers and translations of Indian philosophy.




Introduction : The Realist-Idealist Debate

Chapter One : Early Indian Idealism and Mysticism

1. Early Mysticism
     1.1 The Upanisads
     1.2 Yoga
     1.3 The Buddha
2. Nagarjuna : Conundra of Thought
3. Systematic Buddhist Idealism (Yogacara)
4. Sankara and Vedantic Mystical Monism
     4.1 Cultural and Textual Background
     4.2 The Sublatability Argument
     4.3 Sankara's Attack on Relation
     4.4 Advaita Philosophers through Vacaspati Misra I

Chapter Two : Early Systematic Realism

1. The Grammarians and Early Manuals of Debate
2. Vaisesika and Nyaya Literature through Udayana
3. Nyaya-Vaisesika through Udayana
     3.1 What is Real : Theory of "Primitive Types"
     3.2 Theory of Cognition and Justification
     3.3 Generality
     3.4 Definitions in Philosophy
     3.5 Theory of Debate
     3.6 Rational Theology
4. Mimamsa (Exegesis)
5. Other Players Pre-Sriharsa

Chapter Three : Sriharsa

1. A Philosopher, Poet, and Mystic
2. The Positive Program
     2.1 The Self-Illumination, Self-Certification, and Sublation Theses
     2.2 "Scripture" (sruti)
     2.3 An Ontological Argument for the Absolute, Brahman
     2.4 Refutation and Indirect Proof
     2.5 Meditation and Mysticism
3. Realism, the Core Problems
     3.1 Consciousness and Theory of Justification
     3.2 "Truth" and the "Real" (tattva)
     3.3 Definitions and Defining Characteristics
     3.4 The Attribution Dilemma
     3.5 Universals
     3.6 Paradoxes of Distinctness (bheda)
     3.7 Informal Logic and Debate
4. Advaita and Theistic Voluntarism
5. Sriharsa's Advaita Followers

Chapter Four : New Logic

1. Gangesa and the New School
2. Cognition and Justification
     2.1 Indeterminate Awareness
     2.2 the Constituents of Determinate Awareness
     2.3 Veridicality
     2.4 Apperception
3. Ontological Grounds
     3.1 Inherence and Self-linkage
     3.2 Absences
     3.3 Surplus Properties
4. Identity and Distinctness

Chapter Five : Annotated Translation of Selected Passages within Selected Texts

1. Sriharsa on Dialectical Reasoning (tarka)
2. Manikantha Misra's Response
3. Gangesa on Dialectical Reasoning
4. Sriharsa o Defining Veridical Awareness
5. Gangesa on Defining Veridical Awareness
6. Sriharsa on Distinctness and the Relation Regress
7. Gangesa on Inherence (samavaya)
8. Sankara Misra on Relationality and Distinctness
9. Vacaspati Misra II on  Distinctness



1. Proper Names
2. Terms




1. Classical Sanskrit Texts (with Abbreviations)
2. Other Works


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