[Advaita-l] shaDdarhana and other unorthodox schools

Ram Garib garib_ram at yahoo.co.in
Tue Jan 16 18:23:42 CST 2007

Sri Sylvain wrote:

> The orthodox schools (shaDdarshana) of hinduism are
> said to be : nyAya, vaisheshika, sAnkhya, yoga,
> mImAmsA, vedAnta.

In Hinduism, boundaries between sect ideologies and
philosophical systems are often blurred. The above six
are the generally accepted orthodox schools. However,
mAdhavAcharya (vidyAraNya), in his
"sarva-darshan-samgraha" lists thirteen othodox
schools. He counts dvaita-vedanta and four shaivite
schools as independent systems.
> Is there a precise count of the unorthodox schools ?

As per "sarva-darshan-samgraha", Buddhist, Jain and
Charvaka are the three unorthodox schools.
mAdhavAchArya's treatment of unorthodox schools is
befitting the stature of worthy opponents. They have
also been acknowledged -- though less generously-- by
Madhusudana Saraswati, who describes them as "mlechha"
(barbaric) schools. I do not remember correctly but
some scholars have counted six un-orthodox schools
giving independent status to sautAntrika and
mAdhyamika schools of buddhism.

In Aine-Akbari, Abul-Fazl has mentioned about a
multi-religious conference held at Akbar's court. From
unorthodox schools, he has mentioned participation by
Jain, Bauddh and Charvakas, though it is not clear
which school of buddhism was represented.

>  Is the pratyabhijña one of them ?

Pratyabhijna is Kashmir Shaivism. It is an orthodox
system. As per mAdhvAcharya, it is an independent
system, however modern scholars often treat it as a
branch of Advaita Vedanta.

In contrast to western philosophy, where "unorthodox"
means "atheist",  strands of theism and atheism cut
across both the categories in indian philosophy.

With regards,
Ram Garib

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