Jaldhar H. Vyas
jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Mon Jul 26 23:48:41 CDT 1999
> And what are people like me? I've heard very analogous arguments from
> Christians who are affronted by having the final authority of their Bible
> and "Tradition of the Fathers" questioned seriously. "Women can't chant the
> Vedas because tradition says they can't" (whoever in the list said that).
I said that. The reason being that it is true. Implicit in many
questions about why women cannot chant the Vedas is the idea that it mst
because they suffer from some defect. But the reason is not due to any
lack of moral or spiritual or intellectual capacity on their part. The
only reason we say they cannot is because the tradition is they cannot.
(And the Upanishads are part of the Vedas btw.)
Let us say I made the statement "Americans can only drive on the right of
the road." It is a true statement is it not? Why can they not drive on
the left? Because the law says they cannot. Is it possible to drive on
the left? Yes, they do it that in India, England etc. But try using that
line on the officer that arrests you! :-)
How would you "seriously" question whether the position on women and the
Vedas or the side of the road is correct or not anyway. You would need
some meta-principles which could only be verified with
meta-meta-principles ad infinitum. The only way to break this regress is
to assume some principles at some point.
> I don't follow my own Western tradition in this slavish manner, I'm
> certainly not going to adhere to someone else's just for the sake of
The classic example is Euclidian geometry. Early in this century it was
determined that even this relatively simple logical system was incomplete.
It turns out you cannot account for the parallel postulate on Euclidian
principles alone. And denying it or modifying it will stil produce
logical systems some of which are quite useful. I don't think either you
or I feel "slaves" to geometry do we? Yet by your criteria we are. We
see things in Euclidian terms only out of tradition.
Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
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