The text of Tattvatraya was not available for long time, though it is one of the good primers for the knowledge of the Visistadvaita philosophy. Dr. B. M. Awasthi and Dr. (Mrs.) C.K. Datta have done a good service to the students of this religio-philosophical system by bringing out a translated and adequately annotated edition of the Tattvatraya. As the text is concerned with enumeration of basic elements of the Visistadvaita philosophy, rarely entering into deep philosophical analysis and polemics, the learned translators could not get an opportunity of showing their philosophical understanding at its best. But it goes to the credit of these two scholars. that they have tried to present as faithfully as possible, the meaning and purport of the text and the philosophy it seeks to propound.
Philosophical scholarship in India is at a cross-road. Our scholars who receive their education in universities are by and large attracted to philosophy as it has grown in the West. They develop a tendency to look at the philosophy developed in India with contempt. The reason for this is two-fold. First, these scholars have little knowledge of Sanskrit and there are no good philosophical translations of old texts available either in English or in Indian Languages. So called translations of old texts are done by orientalists who have translated letters rather than spirit of ancient philosophy. As a result these translations are obscure, unintelligible to modern mind and present dull reading. No student of philosophy, if he is not approaching philosophy as a part of his orientalists' discipline, can derive any benefit and interest in Indian philosophy by reading these translations. Secondly, whatever of Indian philosophy is taught in our universities it is done through such books as are modelled on Madhava's Sarva-darsana-samgraha. These are regarded standard reference books, first because no other books have been written, and secondly, because their authors have been important men in the public and administration. The chief defect of these books has been their treatment of Indian philosophy not from the point of view of development of concept and ides but from the point of view of "schools". They have assumed as if the Nyaya philosophy has developed in isolation from the rest of philosophical movement and so on. Treating philosophical development in India as leading to the Advaita Vedanta after the Sarva-darsana-samgraha has also been another major factor in making Indian philosophy unpopular. Thus, a modern student trained in the Western philosophical tradition finds in Indian philosophy of the kind taught in our Universities much that he is conditioned to regard as unphilosophical. An orientalist student, who receives his training in Sanskrit, on the other hand, lacking in conceptual tools required for philosophical pursuit, is incapable of appreciating and evaluating what is philosophically significant in our tradition. Therefore, our present-day educational system cannot produce "Indian Philosophers" who would be expected to carry forward indigenous philosophical system; in other words most of the philosophers of India today "do philosophy" outside an Indian cultural milieu which is an indispensable factor for philosophical growth.
Those Indian philosophers who have taken pride in specializing in Western philosophy have at least one serious disadvantage and one special advantage. Their disadvantage is that they are not brought up in the western tradition and their concepts, in cores, are still non-western. They cannot therefore be acknowledged as interpreters of the western tradition which task philosophy seeks to perform. But they have an advantage; they have that philosophy seeks to perform. But they have an advantage; they have that philosophical tool which they can apply to any given matter. If the tradition of Indian philosophical thinking is correctly presented to them, they can, with the philosophical tool available to them do the required philosophical analysis. However, it must be acknowledged that sometimes western tools may become inadequate or ineffective when applied to Indian philosophy, but such occasions are rare and a vigilant philosopher can, through insight, discover an Indian method of analysis or may modify his western tools to suit Indian conditions. But all this can happen only when the philosophical tradition is correctly presented to him. For this he has either to rely on orientalists of high calibre, saturated in the tradition, or he himself has to get the traditional training.
The present edition of the Tattvatraya aims at correctly presenting a philosophical tradition and in the introduction an attempt has also been made to present a rudimentary conceptual analysis. Such an attempt is laudable because I feel it a right step towards doing 'Indian Philosophy". This has been made possible because of the cooperation of a traditional Sanskrit scholar, Dr. Awasthi, and a modern philosopher, Dr. (Mrs.) Datta. Such cooperative ventures alone can reestablish a living philosophical tradition in India.
The Tattvatraya of Lokacarya is an exposition of the three fundamental principles of Cit, Acit and Isvara, after the system of Ramanujacarya as propounded in his Sribhasya, the well-known commentary on the Vedanta-Sutras of Badarayana. The book comprises of clear and concise propositions expressing the views about the three fundamental principles. Though a small book, it has a distinctive completeness in itself.
Polemics abound in the book showing the distinction of Visistadvaita tenets from those of other systems, such as the Advaita Vedanta, Sainkhya, Jainism etc. Some reference to the text are given in the foot-notes, whereever necessary, for its elucidation and proper understanding.
We have tried to follow the original faithfully with the hope that it will be of use to those who are interested in understanding the system of thought of Ramanujacarya and its later developments carried on by his followers. In spite of our best care, faults might have crept in inadvertently, and we shall be glad to accept the responsibility and to rectify the same if our attention is drawn to them.
We wish to express our gratitude to Dr. R.C. Pandeya, Professor and Head of the Department of Buddhist Studies, University of Delhi, who has very kindly gone through the manuscript, given valuable suggestions and written a foreword to this book, Besides, our grateful thanks are for Dr. S.R. Bhatt, Reader in Philosophy, University of Delhi, for writing an essay on 'The Visistadvaita Philosophy'. We also thank Indu Prakashan, for the publication, and the Anand Printing Press, for the Printing of this book.
|I||The Visistadvaita Philosophy||xi|
|IV||Text and Translation|
|Quotations Referred in Foot-Note||70|
Item Code: NAM153 Author: B.M. Awasthi and C.K. Datta Cover: Hardcover Edition: 1973 Publisher: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Pvt. Ltd. Language: Sanskrit Text With Hindi and English Translation Size: 8.5 inch x 5.5 inch Pages: 108 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 195 gms