In this book, Dr. S.P Verma has given a new interpretation of the role of reason in Sankara Vedanta. Reason plays two roles in Sankara's philosophy, viz. Primary and secondary. In its prim ry role, reason is employed by Sankara to remove the superimpositions of not-self on self by refuting opponents, theories which mistake this or that form of not self for self. Operations of reason in this role leads to Atmavada or Brahmavada (the final theory of Vedanta), and fulfils the primary objective of Vedanta, viz. Attainment of liberation through self realisation.
In its secondary role, reason is used by Sankara to refute opponents' theories relating to the topics other than self. By doing so he arrives at vivartavada and Brahmanimittopa-danakaranavada. The significance of the secondary role of reason is also two fold. Firstly, the critisms of antagonistic views made under this role of reason contributed significantly to the progress of Indian philosophy. Secondly, vivartavada and Brahmanimittopa-danakaranayvada established by reason in its secondary role prove indirectly helpful in the attainment of liberation through self-realisation.
Dr. S.P. Verma (b. 1941) is First Class B.A. and M.A. From Allahabad University. For this distinction he was awarded Eight Medals, four gold four silver. He is Ph. D. from B.H.U. and First Class Shastri from sampurnanand Sanskrit Vishwavidyalaya, Varanasi. Dr. Verma has been teaching post graduate classes at university level for last twenty six years. He worked for four years (1965-69) as the first Indian Chairman of the department of comparative philosophy at Sampurnanad Sanskrit Vishwavidyalaya, Varanasi, framed the curricula of Shastri and Acharya in the discipline and started the teaching thereof through Sanskrit medium He has worked under rotational system as chairman of the Department of Philosophy at Kurukshetra University for two terms, and is now working there as Reader in Philosophy. He has participated in dozens of National Conferences Seminars on Philosophy. Under his supervision, several research scholars have obtained Ph. D and one has recently submitted his thesis; and four are now working with him for doctoral degree. He has also supervised several M.A. and M.Phil. dissertations. He has contributed dozens of research papers to Journals of philosophy. Abstract of one of his papers was published in the Philosopher's index, Ohio, U.S.A. His one other published is (Relevance of Indian Philosophy). His field of specialisation is Indian philosophy with special reference to Sankara Vedanta.
Role of Reason in Sankara Vedanta is an improved version of my thesis entitled An Evaluation of Sankara's Critique of Rival Mataphysical systems on which I obtained Ph. D. degree from B.H.U. in 1972. In this book, an attempt has been made to bring out the significance of the two fold role of reason in Sankara Vedanta.
The work has been divided into six chapters. In the first chapter (Introduction), the salient features of Sankara's method of criticism and construction have been hinted at and the two fold role of reason in his Vedanta has been dealt with. In the next four chapters, Sankara's criticisms of rival metaphysical system (viz., Sankhya, Vaisesika, Buddhism, Jainism, Pasupata and Pancaratra) have been explained and discussed. In the concluding chapter, the relative merits of the two roles of reason in Sankara Vedanta have been assessed and the justification for the new interpretation of the subject under discussion has been given.
The role of reason in Sankara Vedanta has been interpreted here as two fold, viz. Primary and secondary. In its primary role, reason is employed by Sankara to remove the Superim-positions of not-self on self by refuting opponents theories which mistake this or that form of not-self for self. Operation of reason in this role leads to Atmavada or Brahmavada (the final theory of Vedanta), and fulfils the primary objective of Vedanta, viz, attainment of liberation through self realisation.
In its secondary role, season is used by Sankara to refute opponents's theories relating to the topics other than self. Through the operation of reason in this role theories such as parinamavada, pradhanakaranavada and paramanukarana-veda are refuted, and vivartavada and Brahmanimittopada-nakaranavada are established. The significance of the secondary role of reason is also two fold. Firstly, the criticisms of antagonistic views made under this role of reason contributed significantly to the progress of Indian philosophy. Secondly, vivartavada and Brahmanimittopadanakaranavada established by reason in its secondary role prove indirectly helpful in the attainment of liberation through self-realisation.
I am indebted to Dr. N.K. Devaraja, Retd. Professor of Philosophy,, (B.H.U.) under whose supervision the work was originally done, I owe sincere thanks to my colleagues in the Department, Dr. V.Shanker (Reader) and Dr. R.K. Deswal (Lecturer) who helped me immensely in getting this work published. I thank Dr. Bhupinder (Research Assistant, Dept. of Education, K.U. Kurukshetra) and Dr. S.R.S. Tomar (Senior Scientist, IARI, Delhi) who rendered me valuable help in the process of the publication of this work. I am thankful to Dr. Jai Singh and Dr. Hari Singh (Lecturers in Philosophy, University College, Kurukshetra), Smt. Sumitra, Smt. Sabita Rani Hota, km. Vibha, Km. Anamika and Sh. Satya Narayan (Research Scholars of the Dept. of Philosophy, Kurukshetra University Kuruksetra) for helping me in the proof reading of the book Lastly, I am grateful to Sh. K.L. Joshi, proprietor, Parimal publications, Delhi for printing it in the shortest possible period.
I bank upon the magnanimity of readers for being excused for the printing crrors which might have remained uncorrected in spite of the great pains taken in proof reading.
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