The Matilal Strategy

B. K. Matilal (1935-1991) was undoubtedly one of the most influential scholars of Indian philosophy in the late 20th century. His work has greatly influenced many of us who work on Indian philosophy today, especially if we do so in Continue reading

Are words an instrument of knowledge?

Are words an instrument of knowledge? And, if so, what sort of? Are they an instance of inference insofar as one infers the meaning on the basis of the words used? Or are they are an independent instrument of knowledge, Continue reading

Necessity in Mīmāṃsā philosophy

Our Anand Vaidya has recently raised a very intriguing discussion on modality in Indian philosophy. His post started with the suggestion that modality is less central in Indian philosophy than it is in Western thought. In the comments, several scholars Continue reading

Why should one engage in non-Western philosophical ideas? Two examples

A few days back, I discussed (here) why one should test one’s logical hypotheses against something alien, be it a Medieval paradox or a Sanskrit text (or anything in between). Today, I came back to the same thought while reading Continue reading

Do Mīmāṃsakas think that one “Ought to sacrifice”, or that one “Ought to sacrifice, given the condition x applies”?

I am currently working with some amazing colleagues at the Vienna University of Technology on the formalisation of Mīmāṃsā deontic logic (for further information, read this post). One of the problems we are facing is that duties prescribed in Vedic Continue reading

What do I obtain if I refrain from eating onion (and so on)?

In the case of the Śyena and the Agnīṣomīya rituals, violence is once condemned and once allowed, causing long discussions among Mīmāṃsā authors. Similarly, the prohibition to eat kalañja, onion and garlic is interpreted differently than the prohibition to look Continue reading

Conveying prescriptions: The Mīmāṃsā understanding of how prescriptive texts function

The Mīmāṃsā school of Indian philosophy has at its primary focus the exegesis of Sacred Texts (called Vedas), and more specifically of their prescriptive portions, the Brāhmaṇas. This means that the epistemic content conveyed by the Vedas is, primarily, what Continue reading

The Epistemology of Modality: Setting Up the Question for Classical Indian Philosophy–A Guest Post by Anand Vaidya

Hi All, Matthew and Elisa asked me to provide a guest post on a project I am working on. I just spent the last two weeks in Europe, first Belgrade, Serbia and then Aarhus, Denmark working on one of my main Continue reading