Alternative approaches to reality in Indian thought

Right from the dawn of civilization the reflective human mind has been grappling with attempts to comprehend Reality with wonder, curiosity and inquisitiveness. The Reality in its ‘proto’ and ‘manifested’ forms has always eluded human grasp resulting in alternative conceptions and at times conflicting accounts. There has been no unanimity or agreement in this regard. But human mind admits of no rest or finality in this enterprise. The exposure of Indian thought so far has been piecemeal and not complete and all-round. It is primarily based on interpretations of western Indologists of 18th and 19th centuries whom Prof. Radhakrishnan, Prof. S. N. Dasgupta, Prof. Hiriyanna etc. followed 80 years back in nineteen thirties under western influence. Thereafter new discoveries have been made and newer interpretations have been put forth. So there is a need to revisit Indian thought without being prejudiced by earlier interpreters. For theoretical analysis some Jain works provide good model. For applied dimension of Indian thought Charaka Saṃhitā is the best guide. A comparative study of such endeavors is helpful to enrich mutual understanding and may also open up newer vistas of approaching the rich and multi-faceted nature of Reality for universal well-being.


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