[Advaita-l] shaDdarhana and other unorthodox schools

Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian rama.balasubramanian at gmail.com
Mon Jan 29 06:08:13 CST 2007

On 1/24/07, Ram Garib <garib_ram at yahoo.co.in> wrote:
> Sri Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian wrote:
> > Some are even
> > borderline/actual racists. One
> > particular discussion in the old Indology list comes
> > to mind - where
> > one gentleman dismissed all Indian engineers as of
> > poor quality (based
> > on perhaps some bad experiences).
> .....
> > It's our own fault that this is happening. Foreign
> > authors have to
> > prove to *us* about their capability.
> I appreciate your point about technical education but
> I believe similar sentiments are not justified for
> philosophy.
> I have had occasion to be associated with Indian
> Council of Philosophical Research. Though, a
> bureaucrat's opinion about academic matters hardly
> means anything yet even with my limited understanding
> of philosophy I have felt embarassed by the quality of
> research going in indian philosophy. You can see the
> same old arguments being parroted in research papers
> about their stand being "true" without even making any
> effort to clarify what they mean by "true": Is it
> contingent true or necessary true or analytic or de
> re?; and then jumping from one class to another class
> as per their convenience. No wonder such imprecisely
> constructed arguments and research would seem too
> infantile to a western philosopher to even take any
> notice.

Dear Sri Ram Garib,

I think with my digressions on the many biases of among a large
percentage of Western academics shrouded my main point. Any philosophy
has certain fundamental suppositions to it. The Western assumptions -
as exemplified by Russell and his many philosophers - have been
subject to many criticisms for example by Schrodinger. See [1] and
[2].  He praises Vedanta as offering a better solution.

So my question why blindly take the Western ideas and suppositions,
and try to win approval? I appreciate your point abut being imprecise,
etc. But I suggest you are also looking at the wrong place. Arindam
Chakrabarti, a professor at Univ of Hawaii, Western trained and quite
reputable, has related his experience with the scholars at the
Tirupati University. He says that the teachers while using bhaashyas,
constantly refine their arguments and when he introduced some Western
style crticisms, they took that up and modified their lectures to
include those also. He relates how dynamic the tradition really is. So
you may be better off examining the fast disappearing "traditional"
pundit, than institutions like ICPR.

I disagree that Hinduism is treated with kid gloves by Western
academecians. The kind of drivel which comes out is absolutely
stunning. And if Hindus even come up with some solid objections, they
are written off as neo-nazis, no less.

[1] My View of the World
[2] What is Life, and Mind and Matter


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