A few centuries back there arose in the vast firmament of Sanskrit literature a big and brilliant star, the Tattvacintamani of Sri Gangesopadhyaya. It was acclaimed by all erudite men of that time as the clearest and most authoritative exposition of the principles of Nyaya, and to some extent of Vaisesika, philosophy. The intrinsic value of this great work prompted not a few of the intellectual giants o succeeding generations to write elaborate commentaries on it, commentaries on the commentaries and so on. Even great writers on other Darsana-s, such as Madhusudana Sarasvati and Sri Brahmananda Sarasvati, quoted Tattvacintamani to prove the rightness of the standpoint taken up by them. Such was the popularity and reputation of this invaluable work among the Pandita-s that it came to be spoken of, as if in affection, by the shortened name of
Cintamani and them merely as Mani.
For reasons which we need not consider here, students and even teachers began to neglect the study of the whole work and were content to go through a portion of Anumanakhanda with Sri Raghunatha's commentary, the Cintamani Didhiti, with the assistance of Jagadisi or Gaddhariya. Writers then began to bring out abridgments of the Tattvacintamani like Manisara. To this category belongs Manikana now being presented to the public y Dr. Sreekrishna Sarma, a well-known Pandit teaching in the Tirupati University College, Dr. Sarma while working in the famous Adyar Library picked out this short but lucid work and after close study thought it might be of great help to those who take up the study of Nyaya.
Some western scholars of repute have for some time past been evincing a keen interested in the Darsana-s of ancient India. Happily the number of such scholars is increasing. It Is naturally difficult for them to begin with such voluminous works as the Cintamani. They are in need of shorter treatises with good English translations. It is to meet this wasn't that Dr. Sarma has undertaken the editing of Manikana with his own translation. He has also most thoughtfully added notes to expound the principles enunciated in the Sanskrit text wherever the necessity was felt. Dr. Sarma has the good fortune to come in contact during his foreign travels with various scholars interested in the study of Sanskrit literature. He was able to realize what assistance they would require for the understanding of this text. The fact that even to the Indian students who choose Sanskrit for their M.A. degree in our universities, English is more familiar than Sanskrit, might also have influenced Dr. Sarma in deciding to edit the text with a translation and notes. It is true that the Tarka-samgraha, the Siddhantamuktavali, etc., have been published with translations. But they follow more or less the method Bhasya on the Kanada-sutra-s. Manikana, on the contrary, is concerned solely with the principles discussed in the Cintamani itself and is, therefore, more useful to those who desire knowledge of that great work.
Dr. Sarma had to work under the handicap of having to depend solely on one copy of the manuscript. It need hardly be said that manuscript copies of old works are likely to contain errors of commission and omission. I am glad to say that Dr. Sarma has tried his best to rectify them. But I am afraid there may be a few others which intelligent readers may notice.
All lovers of Sanskrit literature especially of the Sastra-s will be grateful to Dr. Sarma for bringing out this rare work. I congratulate him for his great diligence and hope that this work will have a wide circulation particularly among students in universities I with Dr. Sarma a long and happy life and a prosperous career.
This edition of the text of the Manikana, is based on the only manuscript known so far, PM 1654 of the Adyar Library.
The only information we have about the work is that it was composed for teaching a certain Gopala. Nothing is known about the author.
In 1956, when I joined the staff of the Adyar Library and Research Centre, I found that the Manikana was included in the list of rare works to be published by the institution. The work interested me, especially for the reason that it was the only composition, so far as my knowledge went, which aimed at giving an epitome of the celebrated Tattuacintamani in the form of a prakarana or manual. When the Library decided to publish the work, it was thought that an English translation of the text with explanatory notes would add to the usefulness of the publication. The result is now placed before students and scholars of Nyaya in the form of this book.
I have tried to give a more or less literal translation of the text. As the Nyaya terminology is peculiar and the style enigmatic, I have explained the language as well as the concepts in the notes. In translating technical terms I have made use of the works of Athalye, Kuppuswamy Sastri, Vidyabhushana, Madhavananda, Suryanarayana Sastri and Ingalls, though I have not strictly followed any of them. In the Introduction I have tried to furnish general information about the Nyaya-sastra, which I hope will be useful to the students who seek entrance to the field of Nyaya.
I am grateful to the Adyar Library and Research Centre for undertaking this publication. I should not hesitate to state that I alone am responsible for its drawbacks and that whatever merit it may have is largely owing to the kind cooperation and constructive criticism of many friends. I am sure that but for the, keen interest and vigilance of Mrs. Radha Burnier, not only would the language of the translation and the notes be poorer, but the work also would not have been in the present form. I have benefited much from the constructive criticism of Dr. K. Kunjunni Raja, who has also been kind enough to look through the proofs. Dr. V. Raghavan encouraged me by giving his valuable suggestions. A formal thanksgiving to these friends will not relieve me of my indebtedness to them.
Pandit V. Krishnamacharya not only went through the proofs but also made valuable suggestions. Sri V. Anjaneya Sarma, M.A., a colleague and research student of mine, has kindly prepared the glossary, besides assisting in reading the proofs. Dr. S. S. Barlingay with his deep knowledge of modern logic has helped me view the Navya-nyaya concepts from a new angle. I am thankful to all of them.
Before translating the text I had the good fortune of reading it with Panditaraja K. Achutha Poduval, Retired Professor of Nyaya of the Maharaja’s Sanskrit College, Tripunittura. But for his kind help I would not have been able to carry out the work. I pay my respects to this veteran scholar of Nyaya.
Words are hardly adequate to express my indebtedness to H. H. Ramavarma of Cochin, affectionately referred to by people as ‘Pareekshit Tampuran’, for allowing me to read the text and translation to him and for blessing this work with a valuable Foreword. Erudition in the Sastra-s, a passion for Sanskrit, and large-heartedness have made this king of scholars a source of inspiration for the present Sanskrit world. I record my sincere devotion to this great savant of Sanskrit.
IN THE thirteenth century, Gangesopadhyaya of Mithila wrote his celebrated Tattuacintamani which marked the inception of the Navya-nyaya school. It was from this time that the works on Nyaya, beginning with the Nyaya-sutra-s of Aksapada and ending with the Nyayamanjari of Jayanta Bhatta and the Nyaya-uarttika-tatparya-parisuddhi of Udayana became designated by the term Pracina-nyaya. Though Nyaya thought again underwent a considerable revolution at the hands of Raghunatha Siromani, whose immortal work is the commentary Didhiti on TC, his successors mostly preferred Gangesa’s theories to those of Raghunatha, even while admitting the striking originality and logical acumen of the latter. The Tattuacintamani won such universal acclamation from scholars that it gave rise to a very large volume of literature on Navya-nyaya, mainly in the form of commentaries on TC and also separate works based on it. Students can find a brief account of the works and authors of Navya-nyaya in A History of Indian Logic by Vidyabhushana (pp. 402-87) and Materials for the Study of Navya Nyaya Logic by Ingalls (pp. 4-27).
What distinguishes TC from the works of Pracina-nyaya is its novel methodology and arrangement of subjects. Although the Nyaya system was known as pramana-sastra or the branch of learning dealing with the means of valid knowledge, the earlier works did not lay stress on the pramana-s, but treated them as one of several topics. Efforts to combine the once independent systems of Nyaya and Vaisesika had resulted in both systems losing their individual characteristics and it had become difficult to say whether some of the works on Nyaya were pramana-sastra-s or prameya-sastra-s. Gangesa redeemed Nyaya from this state of ambiguity by laying stress on the treatment of the pramana-s. All other topics found in the earlier works are also dealt with in TC, but are subservient to the main topic of the pramana-s. Gangesa defined the terms more accurately and used new expressions to measure subtle thoughts. Every thought and expression was subjected to careful examination. When a new topic was introduced, the propriety of doing so, its relation to the topic previously dealt with and its position in the composition as a whole were carefully examined. This made the language of TC terse and its content serious. The status of Nyaya as a pramana-sastra was thus fully established.
But the concept of pramana is relative, as there can be no pramana without prameya or the object known.
So a pramana-sastra cannot do without the treatment of prameya, With regard to prameya, all Nyaya works including TC accept the Vaisesika metaphysics, necessarily with some alterations. For no system of Indian thought other than the Vaisesika, which is thoroughly realistic and pluralistic in outlook, would have served the purpose of the Naiyayika-s, who are extreme realists.
An important point to be borne in mind is that Nyaya is not logic in the strict sense of the word. It is a system of philosophy. It is true that it lays stress on inference or reasoning as a means to correct knowledge, but it is not formal. It is not a mere device for correct thinking, but a well-thought-out and complete meta-physical thesis. It sharply divides itself from theological and religious philosophy, though it cannot be said to be in the least atheistic. It seeks to establish the existence of a super-human Creator through inference and admits the validity of the Veda-s on the ground that they were first uttered by Him. Like every other Hindu system of thought, it accepts that the final goal of human life is liberation from bondage. Its various theories and assumptions are so well knit that even if one of its metaphysical tenets were disturbed, it would lose ground as a pramana-sastra. To regard the Nyaya system as one of mere logic is mistaking the part for the whole. Even those who are interested only in the logic of Nyaya cannot turn away from the metaphysics of the system, for without a knowledge of the latter the former can hardly be understood.
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