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An Advaita Vedanta Perspective on Language

An Advaita Vedanta Perspective on Language

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  • SKU: IDH565
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  • Publishers: Sri Satguru Publications
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Description

Specifications:

  • Dimensions:8.8' X 5.8'
  • Edition:1991
  • Author:John Grimes
  • Publisher:Sri Satguru Publications
  • ISBN:8170302501
  • Cover Type:Hardcover
  • Number of Pages:288
  • From the Jacket

    An Advaita Vedanta Perspective on Language is an attempt to solve the problems inherent in religious assertions. Philosophers in general and linguistic philosophers in particular are concerned with what can and cannot be expressed in language. The problem is: how to talk intelligibly about a divine subject-matter using ordinary, mundane human language? Religious discourse uses ordinary words of day-to day discourse in an extraordinary way what is the justification for this special use of ordinary language? What do the words of religious discourse mean and what function do they have? Are they cognitive, factual and verifiable or are they non-cognitive, non-factual, and unverifiable. This thesis depicts tow paradigmatic approaches to these questions. Either religious discourse refers to an other and the approach to the remote and foreign other must be through perception or mediated concepts; or religious discourse refers to the very constitutive being of anything whatsoever and as such is self-evident, immediate, and certain. The former approach postulates a gap between the Reality and the individual while the latter approach emphasizes identity. Advaita's solution declares that religious discourse primarily concerns individuals, here and now, and not a God, above and beyond. Methodologically its analysis commences with existence and culminates in essence-declaring that in fact the two are not different. It refers to that which is immediately evident and immanently present unlike the general approach to an other which in one degree or another searches elsewhere.

    About the Author

    John A. Grimes earned his B.A. from the University of California at Santa Barbara and his Master's and PhD degrees from the Radhakrishnan Institute for Advanced Study in Philosophy, University of Madras. His major area of specialization is Advaita Vedanta. His publications include: A Concise Dictionary of Indian Philosophy, Sapta Vidha Anupaptti: The Seven Great Untenables and Quest for Certainty: a Comparative Study of Heidegger and Sankara. At present Grimes is an Assistant Professor at the University of Lethbridge, Lethbrodge, Alberta, Canada.

    CONTENTS
    Preface xiii
    Introduction 1
    Chapter One ADVAITA VEDANTA PROSPECTUS
    1 Religious Discourse-The Problem 35
    2 Indirect Approaches 38
    3 The Gap 39
    4 Religious Discourse- Its use 41
    5 Peculiarities of Religious Discourse 42
    6 The Theme of Advaita Vedanta 46
    7 Sankara's Solution 46
    8 Advaita and Language 50
    Chapter Two APPROACHES AND PERSPECTIVES
    1 Introduction 51
    2 Method 53
    3 Methodology 61
    4 Relation to Epistemology 63
    5 Language and Knowledge 65
    6 Brahman- Atman 68
    7 Brahman- The Objective Vision 73
    8 Is the Absolute Known or Not? 76
    9 Atman- The Subjective Vision 79
    10 Atman is Brahman 81
    Chapter Three THE INDIAN MILLIEU
    1 Introduction to Indian Solutions 83
    PART ONE
    1 Carvakas 88
    2 Buddhism 89
    3 Nagarjuna 92
    4 Nyaya Definition of Words as Knowledge 93
    5 Nyaya Theory of Truth 95
    6 Rational Proofs for Religious Discourse 97
    7 Vaisesika 98
    8 Sankhya 99
    9 Yoga 100
    10 Mimamsa- Words as Knowledge Defined 101
    11 Ritualistic Pragmaticism 102
    12 Authority of Veda 103
    13 Grammarians 105
    PART TWO SABDA PRAMANA VIS A VIS ADVAITA
    1 Words as Knowledge Defined 108
    2 Distinctive Character of words as Knowledge 109
    3 Twofold Capacity of words as Knowledge 111
    4 Words as Knowledge as the Only Means of Supersensuous Knowledge 112
    5 Self-Validity of Knowledge 113
    6 Perception of Words as Verbal Symbols 114
    7 Relation between a Word and its Meaning 117
    8 Words Refer to Universals 120
    9 Secondary Meanings 122
    10 Anivitabhidhanavada 124
    11 Conditions of Significant Combination 130
    12 Akanksa 130
    13 Yogyata 132
    14 Asatti 133
    15 Tatparya 134
    Chapter Four WESTERN APPROACHES
    1 Introduction 139
    2 Introduction to Quasi Cognitive Aproach 142
    3 Analogy 143
    4 Comment 144
    5 Symbolic Language 148
    6 Comment 151
    7 Analysis 155
    8 The Problem of verification 156
    9 Fence sitting 158
    10 Comment 160
    11 Ontological Atheism 163
    12 Comment 164
    13 Flew's Challenge 165
    14 Comment 167
    15 Analysis 169
    16 Introduction to Non-Cognitive Solution 170
    17 Cognitive Cum Non Cognitive 171
    18 Comment 172
    19 An Empiricist's View 174
    20 Comment 176
    21 Bliks 177
    22 Comment 179
    23 Telling the Theistic Parable 180
    24 Comment 181
    25 Factuality without Verification 182
    26 Comment 183
    27 Eschatology 184
    28 Comment 186
    29 Appropriate Practices Produce Appropriate Results 188
    30 Comment 189
    31 Convictionalism 190
    32 Comment 192
    33 Language Games 193
    34 Comment 194
    35 Linguacentricism 197
    36 Comment 199
    37 Oddity 200
    38 Comment 201
    39 Analysis 203
    40 Authority 204
    41 Comment 207
    42 Analysis 209
    Chapter Five ADVAITA'S SOLUTION
    1 Introduction 211
    2 Two Approaches to Religious Discourse 213
    3 Consequences of the Two Approaches 214
    4 Two Levels of Language 224
    5 A Two Level Theory of Religious Discourse 227
    6 Can the Absolute Be Signified Directly? 232
    7 Second Level problems 240
    8 Satkaryavada and Astkaryavada 244
    9 One Level Language- Absolute Language 251
    10 Language about the Absolute 257
    RETROSPECT OF RESULTS 264
    1. Comment 268
    Bibliography 271
    Index 285
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