Derrida and Indian Philosophy by Harold Coward

By Harold Coward

This publication establishes a confident and at the same time stimulating discussion among Jacques Derrida and japanese idea. fabulous parallels are stumbled on with a few conventional Indian philosophies of language, particularly with the Hindu thinker Bhartrhari, and with the chinese language Taoists. Conversely, the perspectives of SAankara and Nagarjuna on language certainly range from these of Derrida.
Derrida and Indian Philosophy builds a bridge during which conventional jap perspectives on language can have interaction the most recent in smooth Western inspiration. It additionally indicates that our figuring out of Derrida will be better whilst his inspiration is approached from an jap standpoint on language.

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But Auro­ bindo separates himself from Bhartrhari and the other classical Indian thinkers by introducing a mod­ ern Western evolutionary perspective into his theory of language. As a Buddhist, Nagarjuna rejects the Vedic identification of language with the divine. For Nagarjuna language is not divine in any way but is conventional. Nor is there a special category of lan­ guage called sCripture that can provide a revelation of reality that is otherwise unattainable. Words, even those of the Buddha, must be tested in one's own per­ sonal experience before being accepted.

Thus it is said that the ignorant person seeing and hearing speech in its overt mani­ fest forms does not know its real nature. To the wise only does language reveal its intrinsic nature. The ordinary person caught in sarhsiira is lost in appear­ ances and fails to penetrate to the deeper reality that the language of sCripture reveals. The Sailkhya-Yoga, Mimarilsa, Vedanta, and Gram­ marian schools of Indian philosophy are not only loyal to this Vedic tradition but give it further devel­ opment.

For Bhartrhari the highest ontological level is Brah­ Sabdatattva (without manifest sequence). 53 Although Time is inherent in Brahman at this stage, no sequence has yet occurred-it is still pure potentiality. The next ontological level, in descend­ ing order, is madhyamii. At this level Kala begins to push or drive delimited portions of Brahman into sequence. This it accomplishes with the help of pralJa or breath. In our experience of language this corresponds to the separation of the unitary sphota into the mental sequence of thoughts.

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