Was Rāmānuja the first author of the Vedāntisation of the current(s) which later became well-known as Viśiṣṭādvaita Vedānta? Possibly yes. But, one might suggest that there are many Upaniṣadic quotations also in Yāmuna’s Ātmasiddhi and that Rāmānuja’s Śrībhāṣya seems to Continue reading
A reader (Robert Gressis) asked me to give him some advice for a class on philosophy of religion in which he would (admirably) like to insert something more than “the typical western philosophy of religion”. He would be interested in Continue reading
Humans are not animals according to Descartes’ distinction of res cogitans and res extensa. They are also not animals according to many Christian theologians (Jesus came to save humans, not animals). Perhaps humans are not (only) animals also according to Continue reading
Is Indian Philosophy “caste-ish”? Yes and no, in the sense that each philosophy is also the result of its sociological milieu, but it is not only that. Is Indian Philosophy only focused on “the Self”? Surely not.
Perhaps since Wittgenstein, we’ve become a bit cautious about taking language as a guide to reality, but here is, I suggest, one place where reflection on language provides a profound metaphysical suggestion about the nature of selfhood. Amongst many of Continue reading
After many years, I am sort of fed up with having to answer the question above, and this is also why I had not read the essay by Barua (bearing the title Is there ‘Philosophy’ in India? An Exercise in Continue reading
A philosopher might end up having a double affiliation, to the philosophical standpoints shared by one’s fellow philosophers, and to the religious program of one’s faith. This can lead to difficult reinterpretations (such as that of Christ with the Neoplatonic Continue reading
In general, classical Indian philosophers tend to define śarīra ‘body’ as a tool for experience (bhogasādhana). Thus, most philosophers state that plants only seem to have bodies because of our anthropomorphic tendencies, which make us believe that they function like Continue reading
In the world-view of a fundamental Viśiṣṭādvaita Vedānta teacher like Vedānta Deśika (1269–1370, aka Veṅkaṭanātha), theology is the center of the system and epistemology and ontology assume their role and significance only through their relationship with this center.
[Note that this talk was delivered in the presence of the Dalai Lama and a large non-specialist audience, on the specific issue of ‘contemplative studies’ and neuroscience; hence the particular angle of approach. The issues in the main do pertain Continue reading