Nyaya-Vaisesika by BRITTO RAJ 2011

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MY DEAR father and brothers:


Our Main CONCERN In This Presentation:

Our Main CONCERN In This Presentation General understanding of Indian philosophy Historical perceptive of Nyaya-Vaisesika system General characteristics of Nyaya-Vaisesika system Philosophical issues of Nyaya-Vaisesika

General understanding of Indian philosophy :

General understanding of Indian philosophy PHILOSOPHY Western philosophy Indian philosophy BEING BECOMING BEING BECOMING Parmenides Heraclitus Orthodox Heterodox

six schools in Indian philosophy :

six schools in Indian philosophy The Six schools of Indian philosophy are: Nyaya Vaisheshika Samkhya Mimamsa ( Purva Mimamsa ) Vedanta ( Uttara Mimamsa ) Yoga


INDIAN SCHOOLS OF PHILOSOPHY Heterodox Orthodox Nastika Astika Anatma Tradition Atma Tradition Carvaka Buddhism Jainism Vedas Upanishads Nyaya-vaisaika Samkya -yoga Vedanta Mimamsa Jainism

Nyaya :

Nyaya Followers believe that obtaining valid knowledge is the only way to obtain release from suffering. According to the Nyaya school, there are exactly four sources of knowledge (pramanas) perception, inference, comparison, testimony


Vaisheshika Closely associated with the Hindu school of logic Nyaya. Vaisesika proposes a form of atomism and claims that all objects in the physical universe are reducible to a finite number of atoms guided or directed by the will of the Supreme Being.

Samkhya :

Sankhya philosophy regards the universe as consisting of two realities Purusha (consciousness) Prakriti (phenomenal realm of matter). Samkhya

Mimamsa (PurvaMimamsa):

Mimamsa ( PurvaMimamsa ) Believe in revelation of the nature and of dharma, by following a set ritual obligations, and prerogatives to be performed properly. Also believed that the nature of dharma isn't accessible to reason or observation, and must be inferred from the authority of the revelation contained in the Vedas.

Vedanta (Uttara Mimamsa):

Vedanta ( Uttara Mimamsa ) Vedanta is based on two simple propositions Human nature is divine. The aim of human life is to realize that human nature is divine. The goal of Vedanta is a state of self-realization or cosmic consciousness


Yoga Yoga Is the cultivation of the mind using meditation ( dhyana ) to further one's acquaintance with reality and finally achieve liberation.

Historical perceptive of Nyaya system :

Historical perceptive of Nyaya system Founded by the sage Gutama , also known as Aksapada . Primarily concerned with the conditions of correct knowledge and the means of receiving this knowledge (Epistemology). The science of logic or reasoning . Develops Logic and Epistemology Discovers the validity or invalidity of knowledge. Through the process of obtaining valid knowledge of things one could secure release from material bondage. Obtaining valid knowledge is the only way to obtain release from suffering.

Historical perceptive of Vaisesika system:

Historical perceptive of Vaisesika system Founded by Kanada. Has a close relation with Nyaya Develops metaphysics and ontology It is known for the philosophy of particularity and logical realism Deals with the categories and to unfold its atomistic pluralism Entire universe is reduced into seven categories.

Nyaya -Vaiseskika Similarities:

Nyaya -Vaiseskika Similarities Character Feature Goal Liberation Cause Of Suffering Ignorance Aim Analysis Of Experience Principle Nature And Qualities Of Self Cosmology Atomist Metaphysics Realistic And Pluralistic Vedic Yes Dualistic Yes

Nyaya -Vaiseskika Difference:

Nyaya -Vaiseskika Difference Characteristics Nyaya Vaiseskika Name Logic Particulars Founder Gautama Kanada Time Newer (500 BC) Older (600 BC ) Sources Of Knowledge Perception, Inference, Testimony And Comparison Perception, Inference Categories Sixteen Seven Approach Synthetic Epistemology General Non-atomist Analytic Metaphysics Particulars Atomist cosmology

General characteristics of Nyaya-Vaisesika system :

General characteristics of Nyaya-Vaisesika system Nyaya –vaisesika represents the analytic, the positive, constructive, creative and defensive side. Aiming to apply logical enquiry and criticism and they seek to restore the traditional substance views as well as save Hinduism free dying. Nyaya is primarily concerned with the conditions of correct thinking and means of acquiring a true knowledge of reality. Vaisesika develops metaphysics and ontology on the basis of seven categories (padarthas). They accept as true whatever is established by reason . Nyaya-Vaisesika school is the chief exponent of pluralistic realism . Universe is divided into two parts such as; universe within and universe without. Universe within refers to the microcosm where the mental activities are taking place. Universe without is the world outside or material world. Nyaya studies the universe within and Vaisesika studies the universe without. Thus Nyaya system develops the sound theory of knowledge( Epistemology). Vaisesika system develops the cosmology. Therefore both the systems together makes the whole study of the universe. Therefore both must go hand in hand because one needs the other for the study.

A. Metaphysical Position of Nyaya-Vaisesika :

A. Metaphysical Position of Nyaya-Vaisesika Realist / ism pluralists / ism Early western philosophy views that Realism is the universal independently and objectively existing realities . Modern western philosophy views that Realism is the things exists independent of mind . The function of knowledge is to reveal objects . object should have its own essence and existence independently . Pluralism means everything in the world has its own existence and different from each other . the world of objects are directly perceived and exists independently of our experience of them.

Philosophical issues of Nyaya-Vaisesika 1. Belief in Padartha :

Philosophical issues of Nyaya-Vaisesika 1. Belief in Padartha A category is called Pardartha. The entire universe is reduced into 7 Padarthas. padarthas catagories Dravya Substance Guna Quality Karma Action EXISTENCE Samanya Universal Visesa Particular Samavaya Inherence Abhava Non-Being NON-EXISTENCE

1. Dravya: Substance:

1. Dravya: Substance Substance, is that in which a quality or an action can exist but which in itself is different from both quality and action Substance does not require anything for its existence. A Substance is also the substratum ( Adhara ) of qualities and actions. So everything in the world has some sort of foundation or basis on which other things are gathered together. Attributes/Quality cannot exist by itself. It needs something to support. Qualities and actions are parasite and it has to exist on something else (i.e. on Substance). Clothness colour+ weight+ number+ shape+ dimension+ separation

Whole and parts:

Whole and parts An object is a whole made up-of parts. The part is the cause of the effect (whole). The cause of the effect (whole) here means not that the cause transferring its essence to the effect (Part to the whole) as Samkya philosophy would say, but the cause is inhering in the parts, which means the cloth co-exist with the thread. The cloth (whole) inheres in the thread (part). Yet, the whole is different from part i.e. cloth is always different from thread, which means both them possess their own respective essences independently. Therefore we can say that the essence and the existence are different and not identical, but only relational.

Reasons for the substance exists at least one Moment:

Reasons for the substance exists at least one Moment Qualities has to inhere in the substance Substance is the cause and the attributes is the effect. Cause has to be immediate antecedent. If they are together we cannot make the distinction between substance and qualities

Substance Types:

Substance Types Earth Ether Fire Time Air Physical Elements Space Non-physical Elements Water Mind Ether Self Spiritual Element

2. Guna or Quality :

2. Guna or Quality Colour ( Rupa ), Taste (Rasa), Smell ( Gandha ), Touch ( Sparsa ), Number ( Samkhya ), Size ( Parimana ), Individuality ( Prthaktva ), Conjunction ( Samyoga ), Disjunction ( Vibhaga ), Priority ( Paratva ), Posterity ( Aparatva ), Knowledge ( Buddhi ), While substance is capable of existing independently by itself, quality or guna cannot so exist. It abides in substance and has itself no qualities.

2. Guna or Quality :

2. Guna or Quality Pleasure ( Sukha ), Pain ( Dukha ), Desire ( Iccha ), Aversion ( Dvesa ), Effort ( Prayatna ), Heaviness ( Gurutva ), Fluidity ( Dravatva ), Viscidity ( Sneha ), Merit (Dharma), Demerit ( Adharma ), Sound ( Sabda ), And Faculty ( Samskara ).

3. Karma or Action:

3. Karma or Action Karma, or movement, is regarded as an irreducible element of the universe. It is neither substance nor quality, but an independent category itself. All movements belong to the substances as much as their qualities. Unlike a quality of substance, its activity is a transitory one. Thus the heaviness of the body is a quality, while its falling is an accident. Qualities which continue to exist are called guna , while those that cease to exist are called karma. Karma in all its forms is transient, and comes to an end either by a subsequent conjunction or destruction of its basic substance. Akasa , time, space, soul -- though substances -- are devoid of action, since they are incorporeal.

4. Samanya or Generality:

4. Samanya or Generality The idea of samanya is motivated by the desire to distinguish the unchanging from the changing Generality relates to abstract characteristics that is singular and eternal and yet pervades many. Samanya is the essence of the common characteristics that unites different entities into one class. Generality is regarded as the eternal, one, and residing in many things belonging to the group of substance, quality or action

5. Visesa or Particular:

5. Visesa or Particular By means of visesa (or particularity) one is able to perceive things as different from one another Empirical objects are distinguished by means of the parts of which they are composed Atoms, time, space, akasa , souls and manas all have their particularities, which are not qualities of classes but only of individuals

6. Samavya or Inherence:

6. Samavya or Inherence The relationship subsisting among things that are inseparable, standing to one another in the relation of the container and the contained, and being the basis of the idea, "This is in that." The relation between cause and effect Generally the relation which binds a substance and its qualities, a whole and its parts, motion and the object in motion, individual and universe, cause and effect, is that of samavaya (inherence).

Samayoga (Nearness) vs Samavaya (Inherence):

Samayoga (Nearness) vs Samavaya (Inherence) Nearness is temporary, allows two more things to exist together without being affected by each other. This nearness is an external relationship existing as an accidental quality of the substances related to it. Eg : Earth+ Water Inherence, on the other hand, is a permanent relation between two entities, one of whom inheres in the other. Here one of the entities depends for its existence on the other. Inherence is said to be eternal. Eg : Substance+Quality

7. Abhava or Non Existence:

7. Abhava or Non Existence Abhava is different from the first six categories in the sense that it is negative. Nonexistence is not found in any of the six positive categories, and yet according to VA philosophy nonexistence exists, just as, for instance, space and direction do. e.g., how does not one know that there is no chair in the room? Answer by looking at the room. Thus nonexistence also exists as such. the non-existence was there all the time, though it was hidden when the jar was on the ground. Thus the absolute non-existence of everything is at all times present everywhere, though it is hidden for the time and in the place the thing happens to be.

Types of Abhava or Non Existence:

Types of Abhava or Non Existence Antecedent nonexistence nonexistence of a thing prior to its creation . this absence has no beginning but it has an end. E.g.. A pot has no existence ,before it was produced. If it denied then all the things would become beginning less. 2.Nonexistence of a thing after its destruction there is something in existence, which shall cease to exist after its destruction . e.g. when a jar is broken into pieces, and then there is nonexistence of that jar

Types of Abhava or Non Existence:

Types of Abhava or Non Existence 3. Absolute nonexistence the type of nonexistence that does not belong to time and space is called absolute nonexistence. E.g. son of a barren women, sky flower 4. Mutual Nonexistence Mutual nonexistence is the absence of a thing in the other. It is exclusive and opposed to each other. It is both beginning less and endless For e.g., a pen is different from a book, so there is nonexistence of the book in the pen and of the pen in the book.


2. THE NYAYA- VAISESIKA THEORY OF CAUSATION A cause is defined as an unconditional and invariable antecedent of an effect and an effect as an unconditional and invariable consequent of a cause. The same cause produces the same effect; and the same effect is produced by the same cause. The cause is not present in any hidden form whatsoever in its effect. The following conditions should be met: The cause must be antencedent [ Purvavrtti ] Invariability [ Niyatapurvavrtti ] Unconditionality [ Ananyathasiddha ]


THE NYAYA-VAISESIKA THEORY OF CAUSATION NYAYA RECOGNIZES THREE KINDS OF CAUSE: Samavayi Karana or upadana Karana material cause. E.g. Thread of a cloth. Asamavayi , colour of the thread which gives the colour of the cloth. Nimitta ', efficient cause, e.g. the weaver of the cloth.


THE NYAYA-VAISESIKA THEORY OF EFFECT An effect ( karya ) is defined as the ‘counter-entity of its own prior non-existence, ( pragabhavapratiyogi ). It is the negation of its own prior-negation. It comes into being and destroys its prior non-existence. It was non-existent before its production. It did not pre-exist in its cause. It is a fresh beginning, a new creation. This Naya-Vaisesika view of causation is directly opposed to the Sankhya -Yoga and Vedanta view of satkaryavada . It is called asatkaryavada or arambhavada . The effect ( karya ) is non-existent ( asat ) before its creation and is a new beginning ( arambha ), a fresh creation. It is distinct from its cause and can never be identical with it. It is neither an appearance nor a transformation of the cause. It is newly brought into existence by the operation of the cause.


ASATKARYAVADA OR ARAMBHAVADA Cause Effect Upandana Karana = Samvayikarana Cause &Effect Co-exist (Or) Inheres Non-existent Wasn’t Present In The Cause And It Is Completely New More Stress On “ Difference” Less Stress “Identity” “Difference In Identity” pot clay

B. Epistemological Position Of Nyaya-vaisesika :

B. Epistemological Position Of Nyaya-vaisesika THE SOURCES OF VALID KNOWLEDGE All knowledge is a revelation of manifestation of objects . KNOWLEDGE Valid Invalid Perception Inference Comparison testimony Doubt Memory Error Hypothetical argument

1.Perception (Pratyaksa) :

1.Perception (Pratyaksa) Perception is the knowledge produced by the contact of the senses with the objects of the world. Nyaya classifies perception in different ways. Ordinary ( laukika ) – this takes place when a perception is derived from direct contact with a sense object. Extraordinary ( alaukika ) – when an object is not directly present to the senses but is conveyed to the senses through unusual modes. External ( bahya ) – any or all of the faculties of sight, sound, touch, taste and smell are involved in bringing the object to the mind. The five senses are gross senses… Internal ( manasa ) - … and the mind is the subtle sixth sense – the faculty which perceives qualities of soul like desire, aversion, pleasure, pain and cognition. Laukika (ordinary perception) is either indeterminate ( nirvikalpa ) or determinate ( savikalpa ) – for instance the first glance at a table shows us just its mere existence, the general appearance – a second look shows us the details. Determination is always preceded by indeterminate perception.

Extraordinary Perception:

Extraordinary Perception Alaukika (extraordinary perception) is of three types: Perception of classes ( samanya laksana ) It is the percetion of the universals. The universals are distinct class of reals . The universals are in the particulars, which belong to the different classes on account of the different universal inhering in them. The individual belongs to a particular class because the universal of the class inheres in the individual. E.g. All men are moral (morality) cow(particular) …… cowness b. Perception based on association ( jnana laksana ). This is the second kind of extraordinary perception. Diiferent sensations become associated and form one intergrated percetption . An object is not directly presented to the a sense organ, but it is revived in memory through the past cognition of is and is perceived through representation. Eg . One says that something looks delicious, or that a stone looks hard C. Intuitive perception ( yogaja ) – Knowledge born of yogic practices. It is intuitive and never depends on sense-object contact and is never false; it is perceived after the mind is cleansed through yogic practices. Those who have attained spiritual perfection and perceive intuitive knowledge of all objects constantly and spontaneously are called Yukta yogins . Those still on the path and who are practicing concentration and such conditions are called Yunjan yogins .

Various Types Of Sense Object Contact:

Various Types Of Sense Object Contact Samyoga (conjunction) It is the relation between two substances. SENSE-OBJECT CONTACT TWO SUBTANCES = EYE+ POT pot Eye

2.Samavaya (Inherence):

2.Samavaya (Inherence) The relation between one substance and any one of the other categories Qualities SUBSTANCE IS Eternal QUALITIES ARE Temporary substance

3.Samyukta samavaya ( Inherence in the conjoined):

3.Samyukta samavaya ( Inherence in the conjoined) Relation between two substances and the other categories ( qualities,action ) that is inherent in the substance. Again a relation between eye and colour of the pot = red Red colour pot Eye

4. Samyukta Samaveda Samvaya (Inherence In The Inherent In The Conjoined) :

4. Samyukta Samaveda Samvaya ( Inherence In The Inherent In The Conjoined) Relation between the universal (which is inherent) and the particular quality and its (particular quality) relation with the substance, which is in contact with the sense organs. REDNESS RED POT

5. Samveda samavada (Inherence in the inherent):

5. Samveda samavada (Inherence in the inherent) Relation between a substance-universal and a quality The perception of soundness In a particular sound by the ear


2.INFERENCE It is the detailed process of knowing something not by means of contact between the senses and the objects of the world and not by observation but rather through the medium of a sign that is invariably related to it. Anumana – the cognition or knowledge that follows from some other knowledge. Eg . You see smoke on the hill and arrive at/infer knowledge of fire on the hill because of previous knowledge of the universal relationship between smoke and fire, as in a kitchen. The knowledge of smoke on the hill is called linga , or sign. Next arises the awareness of the universal relationship between smoke and fire based on past observations – this is known as vyapti . As a result, knowledge of the unperceived (directly) fire on the hill arises – this is known as nirnaya or conclusion. The hill, the subject under consideration, is the minor term in this inferential argument – paksa . The fire, what one wants to prove in relation to the hill, is the major term – sadhya . The presence of smoke on the hill is the linga , the sign that indicates the fire. It is also called hetu or meaning “the reason or grounds for inference”.


3.COMPARISON – UPAMANA This kind of knowledge comes when one perceives the similarity between the description of an unfamiliar object and its actual appearance to one’s senses. Eg . A friend describes crab apples as looking like a regular red apple but it is smaller and has a longer stem. You go into the forest and find a tree bearing this fruit you have never seen but you remember the description and conclude that this is a crabapple tree. The Carvaka system of philosophy does not recognize this mode as a source of knowledge; it maintains that perception is the sole source of knowledge. Buddhism recognizes it as a valid source of knowledge but regards it as a mere compound of perception and testimony. The Vaisesika and Samkhya systems explain upamana as simply a form of inference. The Jaina systems maintains that it is merely a kind of recognition. The Mimamsa and Vedanta systems consider upamana an independent source of knowledge but they explain it in a different way.


4.TESTIMONY – SABDA – “WORDS” It is the knowledge derived from words or sentences. But not all verbal knowledge is sabda . Sabda is defined as the statement of an apta or a person who speaks and acts the way he thinks; a person whose mind, action and speech are in perfect harmony and is therefore accepted as an authority. The validity of verbal knowledge depends on two conditions: The meaning of the statement must be perfectly understood The statement must be the expression of a trustworthy person, an apta . There are two ways of classifying sabda : I. Based on the nature of the object of knowledge: The trustworthy assertions of ordinary persons, saints, sages and scriptures on matters related to the perceptible objects of the world. Eg . Testimony in court, doctor’s diagnosis, ritual prescriptions. The trustworthy assertions of persons, saints, sages and scriptures on matters concerning the super-sensible realities . Eg . Physicist on atoms, nutritionist on vitamins, seer’s instructions on virtue, scriptural statements on God and immortality.


LIBERATION Liberation means absolute freedom from all pain and misery – a state in which the soul is completely released from all bondage and its connections to the body. To attain this one needs to acquire true knowledge of the soul and all the objects of experience. This knowledge is called tattvajnana which means “to know reality as completely distinct from unreality”. There is a 3-stage path. Sravana – study of the scriptures, understand their authority. Manana – rumination – the aspirant must use his own reasoning power to ponder what he has learnt. Nididhyasana – contemplate on the soul, confirm your knowledge and practice that truth in life. The truth realised within dispels the darkness of self-identification and misunderstanding ( mithyajnana ) concerning “I- ness ” and “Thy- ness ”. When this happens, the person ceases to be moved by his passions and impulses and begins to perform his duties selflessly without having any desire to reap the fruit of these actions. The fire of true knowledge roasts one’s past karmas like seeds making them unable to germinate.


THE CONCEPT OF GOD God is considered the efficient cause of creation, maintenance and destruction of the universe. God does not create the world out of nothing or out of himself but rather out of the eternal atoms of space, time, mind and soul. The “creation” of the universe refers to the ordering of these entities which are in coexistence with God in a mortal world. NYAYA’S ARGUMENTS FOR GOD: WORLD Effect Efficient cause… 2. ATOMS…….Inactive cannot form different combination………. 3. WORLD …..Sustained & destroyed unintelligent Adtsta………. 4.WORD…….Reference…….object………….comes from………………. 5.AUTHOR ……………Infallible Veda……………………………….. VEDA………..Gives Existence of God…………….. VEDA…..full of moral rules…….creator and promulgator of laws………………. CREATION OF NUMBERS……………Divine consciousness MORAL JUDGE OF OUR ACTION……Merit & Demerit………………………………………. GOD GOD GOD GOD GOD GOD GOD GOD GOD


SIGNIFICANCE Nyaya's most important contribution to Hindu thought is its elucidation of the pramanas (tools of epistemology). It developed a system of logic adopted by other Indian schools of philosophy. Nyaya differs from Aristotelian logic in that it is more than logic in its own right. Obtaining valid knowledge was the only way to obtain release from suffering. To identify valid sources of knowledge and to distinguish these from mere false opinions.



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