The essays in this book treat the Mahabharata from an unusual angle, fastening on the moral dilemmas it presents. How universal are the dilemmas faced by the characters in the story, and are the dilemmas in fact resolved? In dealing with these questions, the discussions range over the meaning of the purusarthas, the institutions of marriage and the family, the concept of action in the GRA and the special predicaments faced by Draupadi, Arjuna and others. These studies invite the scholar to reflect afresh on the text and encourage the general reader to find in epic literature much that is relevant to life today.
BIMAL KRISHNA MATIIAL (1935-1991)was an Indian philosopher whose influential writings present the Indian philosophical tradition as being concerned with the same issues as have been the theme in Western philosophy. From 1977 to 1991 he was the Spalding Professor of Eastern Religion and Ethics at Oxford University. In the works, he presented the Indian systems of logic, particularly Nyaya-Vaigesika, Mimariisa and Buddhist philosophy, as being relevant in modern philosophical discourse. This was in contrast with the German approach to Indian studies, often called Indology, which prefers minute grammatical study as opposed to a concern for the development of the ideas as a whole in the general philosophical context, Indian Philosophical thought more a mere exposition. This helped create a vibrant revival of interest in Indian philosophical traditions as a relevant source of ideas rather than a dead discipline.
Among his published works include Epistemology, Logic and Grammar in Indian Philosophical Analysis (1971); Logic, Language and Reality, MLBD (1985); Perception : An Essay on Classical Indian Theory of Knowledge (1986) ; Logical and Ethical Issues: An Essay on the Indian Philosophy of Religion (1982); Navya Doctrine of Negation (1968); The Word and the World : India's Contribution to the Study of Language (1990); The Character of Logic in India (1999) . He was also the founder editor of the Journal of Indian Philosophy.
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