Peter Adamson and Jonardon Ganeri present a lively introduction to one of the world's richest intellectual traditions: the philosophy of classical India. They begin with the earliest extant literature, the Vedas, and the explanatory works that these inspired, known as Upanisads. They also discuss other famous texts of classical Vedic culture, especially the Mahabharata and its most notable section, the Bhagavad-Gita, alongside the rise of Buddhism and Jainism. In this opening section, Adamson and Ganeri emphasize the way that philosophy was practiced as a form of life in search of liberation from suffering. Next, the pair move on to the explosion of philosophical speculation devoted to foundational texts called 'sutras,' discussing such traditions as the logical and epistemological Nyaya school, the monism of Advaita Vedanta, and the spiritual discipline of Yoga. In the final section of the book, they chart further developments within Buddhism, highlighting Nagarjuna's radical critique of 'non-dependent' concepts and the no-self philosophy of mind found in authors like Dignaga, and within Jainism, focusing especially on its 'standpoint' epistemology. Unlike other introductions that cover the main schools and positions in classical Indian philosophy, Adamson and Ganeri's lively guide also pays attention to philosophical themes such as non-violence, political authority, and the status of women, while considering textual traditions typically left out of overviews of Indian thought, like the Carvaka school, Tantra, and aesthetic theory as well. Adamson and Ganeri conclude by focusing on the much-debated question of whether Indian philosophy may have influenced ancient Greek philosophy and, from there, evaluate the impact that this area of philosophy had on later Western thought.
, Jonardon Ganeri (University of Toronto)
Oxford University Press
Country of Publication:
Series: A History of Philosophy
Publication Date: 21 April 2022
Origins 1: Begin at the End: Introduction to Indian Philosophy 2: Scriptures, Schools, and Systems: A Historical Overview 3: Kingdom for a Horse: India in the Vedic Period 4: Hide and Seek: The Upanisads 5: Indra's Search: The Self in the Upanisads 6: You Are What You Do: Karma in the Upanisads 7: Case Worker: Panini's Grammar 8: Suffering and Smiling: The Buddha 9: Crossover Appeal: The Nature of the Buddha's Teaching 10: Carry a Big Stick: Ancient Indian Political Thought 11: Better Half: Women in Ancient India 12: Grand Illusion: Dharma and Deception in the Mahabharata 13: World on a String: The Bhagavad-gita 14: Mostly Harmless: Non-Violence The Age of the Sutra 15: A Tangled Web: The Age of the Sutra 16: When in Doubt: The Rise of Skepticism 17: Master of Ceremonies: Jaimini's Mimamsa-sutra 18: Innocent Until Proven Guilty: Mimamsa on Knowledge and Language 19: Source Code: Badarayaa's Vedanta-sutra 20: No Two Ways About It: Sakara and Advaita Vedanta 21: Communication Breakdown: Bhartrhari on Language 22: The Theory of Evolution: isvarakrsna's Samkhya-karika 23: Who Wants to Live Forever? Early ayurvedic Medicine 24: Practice Makes Perfect: Patanjali's Yoga-sutra 25: Where There's Smoke There's Fire: Gautama's Nyaya-sutra 26: What You See Is What You Get: Nyaya on Perception 27: Standard Deductions: Nyaya on Reasoning 28: The Truth Shall Set You Free: Nyaya on the Mind 29: Fine Grained Analysis: Kanada's Vaisesika-sutra 30: The Whole Story: Vaisesika on Complexity and Causation 31: A Day in the Life: Theories of Time 32: The Wolf's Footprint: Indian Naturalism 33: Mind out of Matter: Materialist Theories of the Self Buddhists and Jainas 34: We Beg to Differ: The Buddhists and Jainas 35: It All Depends: Nagarjuna on Emptiness 36: Motion Denied: Nagarjuna on Change 37: No Four Ways About It: Nagarjuna's Tetralemma 38: Taking Perspective: The Jaina Theory of Standpoints 39: Well Qualified: The Jainas on Truth 40: Change of Mind: Vasubandhu and Yogacara Buddhism 41: Who's Pulling Your Strings? Buddhaghosa on No-Self and Autonomy 42: Under Construction: Dignaga on Perception and Language 43: Follow the Evidence: Dignaga's Logic 44: Doors of Perception: Dignaga on Consciousness Beyond Ancient India 45: In Good Taste: The Rasa Aesthetic Theory 46: Learn by Doing: Tantra 47: Looking East: Indian Influence on Greek Thought 48: The Buddha and I: Indian Influence on Islamic and European Thought 49: What Happened Next: Indian Philosophy After Dignaga
Peter Adamson received his BA from Williams College and PhD in Philosophy from the University of Notre Dame. He worked at King's College London from 2000 until 2012. He subsequently moved to the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitat Munchen, where he is Professor of Late Ancient and Arabic Philosophy. He has published widely in ancient and medieval philosophy, and is the host of the History of Philosophy podcast. Jonardon Ganeri is a Fellow of the British Academy. He is the author of Attention, Not Self (2017), The Self (2012), The Lost Age of Reason (2011), and The Concealed Art of the Soul (2007). Ganeri's work draws on a variety of philosophical traditions to construct new positions in the philosophy of mind, metaphysics, and epistemology. He became the first philosopher to win the Infosys Prize in the Humanities in 2015.
Reviews for Classical Indian Philosophy: A history of philosophy without any gaps, Volume 5
An astonishing intellectual tour de force written in an accessible and engaging style. * Paradigm Explorer *