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A History of Indian Philosophy, Volume 1

For the concomitance was seen only in individual cases


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style="text-align: justify;">[Footnote 1: See _Prakara@napancika_, pp. 113-115.]

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cannot reconcile, and as a result of that finds an outlet and a reconciliation in the presumption that the existence of Devadatta must be found outside the house.

Well then, if that be so, inference may as well be interpreted as presumption. For if we say that we know that wherever there is smoke there is fire, and then perceive that there is smoke in the hill, but no fire, then the existence of the smoke becomes irreconcilable, or the universal proposition of the concomitance of smoke with fire becomes false, and hence the presumption that there is fire in the hill. This would have been all right if the universal concomitance of smoke with fire could be known otherwise than by inference. But this is not so, for the concomitance was seen only in individual cases, and from that came the inference that wherever there is smoke there is fire. It cannot be said that the concomitance perceived in individual cases suffered any contradiction without the presumption of the universal proposition (wherever there is smoke there is fire); thus arthapatti is of no avail here and inference has to be accepted. Now when it is proved that there are cases where the purpose of inference cannot be served by arthapatti, the validity of inference as a means of proof becomes established. That being done we admit that

the knowledge of the fire in the hill may come to us either by inference or by arthapatti.

So inference also cannot serve the purpose of arthapatti, for in inference also it is the hetu (reason) which is known first, and later on from that the sadhya (what is to be proved); both of them however cannot be apprehended at the same moment, and it is exactly this that distinguishes arthapatti from anumana. For arthapatti takes place where, without the presumption of Devadatta's external existence, the absence from the house of Devadatta who is living cannot be comprehended. If Devadatta is living he must exist inside or outside the house. The mind cannot swallow a contradiction, and hence without presuming the external existence of Devadatta even the perceived non-existence cannot be comprehended. It is thus that the contradiction is resolved by presuming his existence outside the house. Arthapatti is thus the result of arthanupapatti or the contradiction of the present perception with a previously acquired certain knowledge.

It is by this arthapattiprama@na that we have to admit that there is a special potency in seeds by which they produce the

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shoots, and that a special potency is believed to exist in sacrifices by which these can lead the sacrificer to Heaven or some such beneficent state of existence.

S'abda prama@na.

S'abda or word is regarded as a separate means of proof by most of the recognized Indian systems of thought excepting the Jaina, Buddhist, Carvaka and Vais`e@sika. A discussion on this topic however has but little philosophical value and I have therefore omitted to give any attention to it in connection with the Nyaya, and the Sa@mkhya-Yoga systems. The validity and authority of the Vedas were acknowledged by all Hindu writers and they had wordy battles over it with the Buddhists who denied it. Some sought to establish this authority on the supposition that they were the word of God, while others, particularly the Mima@msists strove to prove that they were not written by anyone, and had no beginning in time nor end and were eternal. Their authority was not derived from the authority of any trustworthy person or God. Their words are valid in themselves. Evidently a discussion on these matters has but little value with us, though it was a very favourite theme of debate in the old days of India. It was in fact the most important subject for Mima@msa, for the _Mima@msa sutras_ were written for the purpose of laying down canons for a right interpretation of the Vedas. The slight extent to which it has dealt with its own epistemological doctrines has been due solely to their laying the foundation of its structure of interpretative maxims, and not to writing philosophy for its own sake. It does not dwell so much upon salvation as other systems do, but seeks to serve as a rational compendium of maxims with the help of which the Vedas may be rightly understood and the sacrifices rightly performed. But a brief examination of the doctrine of word (_s'abda_) as a means of proof cannot be dispensed with in connection with Mima@msa as it is its very soul.


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