Paśyantī, Pratibhā, Sphoţa and Jāti: Ontology and Epistemology in the Vākyapadīya

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Abstract

Eli Franco has recently suggested to distinguish the two main periods in the history of Indian philosophy, i.e. the older ontological and the new epistemological. In the Vākyapadīya, however, ontology and epistemology are evidently intertwined and interrelated. In this paper ontological and epistemological features of the concepts of paśyantī, pratibhā, sphoţa and jāti are analyzed in order to demonstrate that all these concepts, while being ontologically different, are engaged in similar epistemological processes, i.e. the cognition of a verbal utterance. Thus the identification of sphoţa and jāti as well as of paśyantī and pratibhā met with in some passages of VP and the commentaries implies not the absolute identity of these concepts, but only their overlapping in the sphere of epistemology. Considering concepts of different origin in one epistemological perspective enables to escape controversies in interpretation and provides a kind of consistency in a bit but amorphous work of Bhartrhari.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)325-335
JournalJournal of Indian Philosophy
Volume44
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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title = "Paśyantī, Pratibhā, Sphoţa and Jāti: Ontology and Epistemology in the Vākyapadīya",
abstract = "Eli Franco has recently suggested to distinguish the two main periods in the history of Indian philosophy, i.e. the older ontological and the new epistemological. In the Vākyapadīya, however, ontology and epistemology are evidently intertwined and interrelated. In this paper ontological and epistemological features of the concepts of paśyantī, pratibhā, sphoţa and jāti are analyzed in order to demonstrate that all these concepts, while being ontologically different, are engaged in similar epistemological processes, i.e. the cognition of a verbal utterance. Thus the identification of sphoţa and jāti as well as of paśyantī and pratibhā met with in some passages of VP and the commentaries implies not the absolute identity of these concepts, but only their overlapping in the sphere of epistemology. Considering concepts of different origin in one epistemological perspective enables to escape controversies in interpretation and provides a kind of consistency in a bit but amorphous work of Bhartrhari.",
keywords = "Bhartrhari · Indian language philosophy · Paśyantī · Sphoţa ·Pratibhā · Jāti",
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AU - Desnitskaya, Evgeniya

PY - 2016

Y1 - 2016

N2 - Eli Franco has recently suggested to distinguish the two main periods in the history of Indian philosophy, i.e. the older ontological and the new epistemological. In the Vākyapadīya, however, ontology and epistemology are evidently intertwined and interrelated. In this paper ontological and epistemological features of the concepts of paśyantī, pratibhā, sphoţa and jāti are analyzed in order to demonstrate that all these concepts, while being ontologically different, are engaged in similar epistemological processes, i.e. the cognition of a verbal utterance. Thus the identification of sphoţa and jāti as well as of paśyantī and pratibhā met with in some passages of VP and the commentaries implies not the absolute identity of these concepts, but only their overlapping in the sphere of epistemology. Considering concepts of different origin in one epistemological perspective enables to escape controversies in interpretation and provides a kind of consistency in a bit but amorphous work of Bhartrhari.

AB - Eli Franco has recently suggested to distinguish the two main periods in the history of Indian philosophy, i.e. the older ontological and the new epistemological. In the Vākyapadīya, however, ontology and epistemology are evidently intertwined and interrelated. In this paper ontological and epistemological features of the concepts of paśyantī, pratibhā, sphoţa and jāti are analyzed in order to demonstrate that all these concepts, while being ontologically different, are engaged in similar epistemological processes, i.e. the cognition of a verbal utterance. Thus the identification of sphoţa and jāti as well as of paśyantī and pratibhā met with in some passages of VP and the commentaries implies not the absolute identity of these concepts, but only their overlapping in the sphere of epistemology. Considering concepts of different origin in one epistemological perspective enables to escape controversies in interpretation and provides a kind of consistency in a bit but amorphous work of Bhartrhari.

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