KIRAN ATMA: Hindu Philosophy
Showing posts with label Hindu Philosophy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hindu Philosophy. Show all posts

Hinduism - Where Is Basohli?


A town in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, near to the Himachal Pradesh border, west of Jammu. 

Basohli was the capital of a tiny kingdom in the Shiwalik Hills in the seventeenth century, despite its insignificance today. 

  • The earliest appearance of the Pahari style of miniature painting was in Basohli. 
  • Highly defined features, severely flattened perspective, and wide bands of a single strong hue for backdrops distinguish the Basohli variant of that style. 
  • It acts as a bridge between the so-called Rajasthani and the Pahari schools' more evolved methods.

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Hinduism - Who Is Basavanna?


(1106–67/68) Basavanna Was A Poet-Saint and Religious Leader of the Lingayat community, a Bhakti (Devotional) Sect/Society that Worships Shiva as the Only Ultimate God and Opposes all Caste Rules. 

The Lingayats originated in the southern Indian state of Karnataka, where they still have a significant presence, and their most important religious scriptures are collections of poetry written in Kannada. 

  • Basavanna was a great devotee (bhakta) of Shiva from his childhood, according to legend, and his piety was so strong that he disregarded all ideas of ceremony and caste. 
  • Basavanna became minister to a monarch called Bijjala after spending most of his childhood as a religious seeker. 
  • Basavanna utilized his riches and power to look after Shiva's traveling followers (jangama), and Bijjala's court attracted a slew of prominent people, including poet and religious leader Allama Prabhu. 

Basavanna's sponsorship was crucial in the formation of the Lingayat community, and the suffix anna ("older brother") was added to his name, Basava, as a mark of his significance. 

  • More traditional groups reacted angrily to the Lingayat community's outspoken resistance to ritual worship and caste differences as the Lingayat community became stronger. 
  • When the nascent Lingayat society allegedly arranged a marriage between an untouchable boy and a brahmin girl, the dispute came to a violent climax. 
    • Traditionalists were so angry that they killed the fathers of the bride and groom. 
  • Basavanna died shortly after the Lingayat community was scattered. 

Speaking of Siva, translated by A. K. Ramanujan, was published in 1973.

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Hinduism - What Is Ekadashi Baruthani?

The eleventh day (ekadashi) of the dark, or waning, half of the lunar month of Baisakh, which falls between April and May, is the festival. 

The festival is devoted to the adoration of Vishnu, particularly in his fifth incarnation, the Vamana avatar. 

  • Most Hindu holidays have specified rituals, which typically include fasting (upavasa) and devotion, and frequently promise particular rewards if they are followed faithfully. 
  • Those who follow this practice should avoid being angry or backbiting, and consume food that has been cooked without salt or oil. 

The word Baruthani means "armored" or "protected," and it is thought that keeping this festival properly observed would shield one from all harm and provide great prosperity. 

  • An ascetic whose foot has been bitten off by a wild beast regains the leg by completing this procedure, according to the founding myth.

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Hinduism - Where Is Barsana?

The birthplace of the deity Krishna's beloved partner, Radha, is a hamlet in the Braj area of the state of Uttar Pradesh.

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Hinduism - What Is A Barat?

Barat is one of the most frequent components of a contemporary northern Indian wedding ritual, in which the groom is accompanied by his (mainly male) family and friends in a procession to the wedding location. 

The barat conjures up images of a regal procession in which the groom, at least for the day, is king. 

  • The groom usually rides a garishly adorned white mare, although any mode of transportation that represents his status is appropriate, from an elephant to a horse-drawn carriage to a garlanded vehicle. 
  • The groom often wears a crown or tinsel decorations in line with regal images. 

The whole procession is typically accompanied by a marching band, who act as heralds and march in front of the royal presence; the band will often halt along the route to perform, and the participants will dance around them. 

  • The groom is typically reserved during the barat for the rest of his friends, in line with the seriousness of the event, but it is a time for joking, laughing, dancing, and celebration right before the wedding. 
  • The barat may also include the drinking of alcohol, however this is frowned upon by many more orthodox Hindus.

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Hinduism - What Is Barahmasa?

Barahmasa  translates to “twelve months”.  Each of a poem's lines, or stanzas, is dedicated to a different month of the year, and the months are handled in chronological sequence. 

This is a completely vernacular genre for which no Sanskrit examples have been found. 

  • Barahmasa poems can be divided into several basic categories, including an enumerative type, which describes appropriate activities for each month, such as farming or religious practice; a narrative form, which recounts a woman's longing (viraha) for her absent lover; and a type describing a young wife's chastity trial as she resists various temptati. 

Charlotte Vaudeville's Barahmasa in Indian Literature, published in 1986, has further material.

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Hinduism - What Is Banking In Hindu Society And Culture?


Banking was frequently an extension of a merchant family's economic life in traditional Hindu culture, especially in periods and locations when centralized banking did not exist. 

The majority of these families conducted business using hundis, or letters of credit, which allowed them to do commerce across long distances without the danger of transferring gold and silver bullion. 

  • These hundis had become virtual money in most of India by the early 1800s, since they were sometimes used in twenty or thirty transactions before being returned to the issuing family for cashing. 
  • The creditworthiness of a merchant family became its most precious asset under this arrangement. 
  • The family's hundis were no longer respected once this was gone, and they were unable to do commerce. 

Because a family's credit was frequently based on assumptions about its character, merchant families worked hard to project an image of seriousness, reliability, and thrift. 

  • The only place where extravagant spending was allowed in this culture was for religious endowments, which bolstered the family's devout image and therefore increased their creditworthiness. 
  • These families would typically invest some of their excess cash in moneylending as a means to enhance their fortune; the wealthiest families regularly loaned money to royalty, which gave them even more prestige. 

C. A. Bayly's Rulers, Townsmen, and Bazaars, 1983, is a superb depiction of the merchant family culture in northern India.

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Hinduism - Who Are The Banjara?


A collection of endogamous subgroups known as jatis ("birth") served as the basis for old Indian society. 

The group's hereditary occupation structured the jatis (and defined their social standing). 

  • The Banjaras were a jati whose ancestral profession was driving pack animals, either as peddlers selling retail items to people in more distant areas or as transporters transporting commodities from one vendor to another, in old northern Indian culture. 
  • They occur as a symbol of human heedlessness or as a person who never stops traveling to reflect on where he has been in poetry by several of the bhakti (devotional) poets, especially Ravidas.

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Hinduism - Who Are The Bania Or Baniya?


Bania is a variant of the term Baniya. A merchant or shopkeeper in traditional northern Indian society who belongs to the vaishya varna, which is the third of four social classes in Hindu culture. 

Aside from their commercial operations, the wealthier ones often participated in moneylending, sometimes at exorbitant interest rates, to supplement their cash. 

  • Banias are often depicted in folklore as ruthless and avaricious individuals who only care about their wealth. 

Banias, despite their reputation as parasites, were an important component of the ancient agricultural economy since they provided farmers with commodities on loan that could be returned after the harvest. 

  • They also gave farmers loans to help them get back on their feet after a poor crop. 
  • The farmers relied on the banias for capital, while the banias relied on the farmers for continued consumption and patronage. 

C. A. Bayly, Rulers, Townsmen, and Bazaars, 1983, is a superb recreation of the ethos of a northern Indian merchant family, in which Hindu religiosity was an essential part.

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Hinduism - What Is A Bana Linga?

An egg-shaped stone that is said to be Shiva's svayambhu ("self-manifested") form. 

The bana linga, like other svayambhu pictures, is regarded exceptional since the deity has spontaneously shown himself in it. 

  • Bana lingas are only found in a few locations, most notably in the Chambal River in Madhya Pradesh, where they may be found in great quantities. 

They come in a variety of colors and sizes, ranging from a few feet broad to several feet wide, but most are smaller. 

  • The smaller ones are moveable and may even be carried as portable objects of devotion by traveling ascetics. 
  • The bigger ones are generally exclusively seen in temples, not only because of the restrictions on movement caused by their larger size, but also because they are thought to be so strong that they should be kept in a well-kept environment.

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    Hinduism - A Philosophy, Religion, Way Of Life, And Identity

    The difference between philosophy and religion in Hinduism is not as obvious as it is in modern Western culture. 

    • The terms "philosophy" and "religion" have no clear counterparts in Sanskrit, Hinduism's holy language. 
    • Anvikshiki-vidya is the closest synonym for "philosophy" ("science of examination"). 
    • Only the Nyaya school of philosophy, which deals with logic and dialectics, uses the similar word tarka-shastra ("discipline of reasoning"). 
    • To describe what we understand by "philosophical inquiry," modern pundits use the phrase tattva-vidya-shastra ("discipline of knowing reality"). 

    Sanatana-dharma The Sanskrit word dharma, which meaning "jaw" or "standard," captures the idea of "religion" (with many other connotations). 

    • Sanatana-dharma ("eternal law") is a Hindu term that relates to the Western concept of philosophia perennis. 
    • For Hindus, philosophy is more than just abstract knowledge; it is a metaphysics with moral consequences. 
    • To put it another way, whatever one's theoretical conclusions about reality are, they must be put into practice in everyday life. 
    • As a result, philosophy is usually viewed as a way of life rather than a meaningless exercise in logical thought. 

    Furthermore, Hindu philosophy (and Indian philosophy in general) includes a spiritual component. 

    • All philosophical systems accept the presence of a transcendental Reality and believe that a person's spiritual well-being is based on how he or she interacts with that Reality, with the exception of the materialist school known as Lokayata or Carvaka. 
    • As a result, Hindu philosophy is closer to the spirit of ancient Greek philosophia ("love of knowledge") than to the modern academic field of conceptual analysis, which goes by the name of philosophy but isn't especially concerned with life-enhancing insight. 
    • Ontology (which deals with the categories of existence), epistemology (which is concerned with the knowledge processes by which we come to know what there is "in reality"), and logic (which defines the rules of rational thought) are all areas of rational inquiry that have preoccupied Western philosophers since the time of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle (which seeks to understand beauty). 

    Hindu philosophy, like Christian philosophy, is deeply concerned with humanity's ultimate spiritual destiny. 

    • As a result, it is often referred to as atma-vidya ("science of the Self") or adhyatmika-vidya ("spiritual science"). 
    • Though sophisticated self-critical systems seem to be the result of the period following the birth of Buddhism in the sixth century B.C.E., the ancient Rig Veda contains the first philosophical musings or intuitions of Hinduism. 

    Six systems are traditionally differentiated, which are referred to as "viewpoints" or "visions" (darshana, from the verbal root drish "to see"). 

    • This statement alludes to two important aspects of Hindu philosophy: Each system is the result of visionary-intuitive processes as well as logical thought, and each system is a unique viewpoint from which the same reality is seen, implying a stance of tolerance (at least in theory, if not in practice). 
    • And that same Truth is what has been passed down by word of mouth (and esoteric initiation) as the ultimate or transcendental Reality, whether it is referred to as God (ish, isha, Ishvara, all meaning "ruler"), the Self (atman, purusha), or the Absolute (brahman). 

    The Vedic revelation (shruti), especially the Rig-Veda, is a major element of Hindu philosophy, and tradition refers to it. 

    • The Hindu philosophers had to defer to, or at least pay lip service to, the ancient Vedic legacy in order to establish their separate schools inside the orthodox fold. 
    • Purva-Mimamsa (which proposes a philosophy of sacrificial ritualism), Uttara Mimamsa or Vedanta (which is the nondualist metaphysics espoused especially in the Upanishads), Samkhya (whose main contribution concerns the categories of sacrificial ritualism), Uttara Mimamsa or Vedanta (which is the nondualist metaphysics espoused especially in the Upani (which is primarily a theory of logic and argument). 
    • I'll provide a short overview of each school and its connection to the Yoga heritage. 


    The Purva-Mimamsa ("Earlier Inquiry") school is so named because it analyzes the "earlier" two parts of the Vedic revelation: the early Vedic hymnodies and the Brahmana texts that explain and deepen their sacrifice rites. 

    • It is opposed to the Uttara Mimamsa ("Later Inquiry"), which is represented by the Upanishads' nondualist doctrines. 
    • The Mimamsa-Sutra of Jaimini gave the Purva-Mimamsa school its unique shape (c.200300 B .C.E.). 
    • In line with Vedic ritualism, it expounds the art and science of moral conduct. 
    • Its main point is the idea of dharma, or virtue, as it relates to an individual's religious or spiritual destiny. 

    The ethical authorities (dharma-shastra) are in charge of defining and explaining the secular applications of dharma. 

    • There have been many well-known Jaiminis, and the author of the Sutra must be differentiated from the sage who was a Vyasa student during the Bharata war. 
    • Mimamsa philosophers, or mimamsakas, see ethical conduct as an unseen, exceptional power that shapes the world's appearance: 
      • Action affects the quality of human life in both this incarnation and future incarnations since humans are inherently active. 

    Bad acts (activities that violate the Vedic moral code, which is believed to reflect the global order itself) result in negative life circumstances, while good actions (actions that follow the Vedic moral code) result in favorable life circumstances. 

    • The goal of leading a morally sound life is to enhance one's quality of life in the present, the afterlife, and future incarnations. 
    • Because the person has free will, he or she may utilize good acts to accrue positive consequences and even cancel out bad ones. 
    • The fact that the fundamental Self is transcendental and everlasting ensures free choice. 
    • Unlike Vedanta, the Mimamsa tradition believes in many fundamental selves (atman). 
    • These are considered inherently unconscious and only become aware in the presence of a body-mind. 

    For the Mimamsa philosophers, awareness is always I-consciousness (aham-dhi). 

    • Although some members of this school began to believe in a Creator God in the fourteenth century, there is no God above and beyond those numerous everlasting and omnipresent Selves. 
    • Because the Self is said to lack both awareness and joy, the early mimamsakas naturally considered the liberation goal sought by other schools to be unappealing. 
    • The eighth-century philosopher Kumarila Bhatta and his disciple Prabhakara were opposed to this viewpoint. 
    • They both taught that abstaining from forbidden and simply optional acts, as well as diligent execution of prescribed actions, inevitably result in the separation of the Self from the bodymind—that is, freedom. 
    • They saw the Self as awareness, but they didn't completely grasp the metaphysical consequences of their viewpoint. 

    Yoga methods have no place in Mimamsa, which extols the concept of obligation for the sake of duty. 

    • "As a philosophical perspective of the world, it is startlingly inadequate," said Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, a former president of India and a renowned scholar, of this school of thought. 
    • Nothing in such a religion can "touch the heart and make it shine." However, since Poorva-Mimamsa was one of the cultural influences faced by the Yoga tradition, it must be included here. 
    • Though Poorva-Mimarnsa was important in the development of logic and dialectics, this school of thinking would scarcely be considered philosophical by Western standards. 

    Apart from Jaimini, Kumarila, and Prabhakara, Mandana Mishra (ninth century c.E.) is the most notable thinker of this school, which has a fairly extensive literature. 

    • He subsequently converted to Shankara's Advaita Vedanta school and took the name Sureshvara. 
    • In the fourteenth-century Shankara-Dig-Vijaya, a fictitious biography of Shankara, the tale of the electrifying meeting between Shankara and Mandana Mishra is recounted. 

    According to tradition, the youthful Shankara, who had taken up renunciation, came to Mandana Mishra's magnificent home just as the renowned scholar of Vedic ritualism was about to begin one of his rituals. 

    • Shankara, who lacked the customary hair tuft and the holy thread across his breast, irritated him. 
    • Mandana Mishra, quite proud of his knowledge, challenged the guest to a discussion after a torrent of nasty comments, which Shankara accepted quietly and not without pleasure. 
    • They decided, as was usual at the time, that whomever lost the argument would adopt the winner's lifestyle.
    • Their intellect and wit duel attracted huge groups of academics and lasted many days. 

    Ubhaya Bharati, Mandana Mishra's wife (who was really Sarasvati, the Goddess of Learning in disguise), was named umpire. 

    • She quickly proclaimed her husband's loss, but quickly countered that Shankara had only beaten half of the battle; for his victory to be complete, he needed to vanquish her as well. 
    • She slyly pushed the young renouncer to a sexuality debate. 
    • Shankara requested an adjournment without losing his cool, so that he might familiarize himself with this field of expertise. 
    • Shankara took advantage of the fact that the monarch of a neighboring country had recently died and utilized his yogic abilities to enter the body and reanimate it. 
    • He returned to the palace to the joyful exclamations of the king's family. 

    Shankara enjoyed and explored for a while the pleasures of sexual love among the deceased king's wives and courtesans in the spirit of Tantra. 

    • According to tradition, he became so engrossed in his new life that his followers had to sneak into the palace to remind him of his previous existence as a renouncer. 
    • Shankara regained his real identity and skillfully dropped the king's corpse before returning to his argument with Mandana Mishra's wife. 
    • Of course, he triumphed. Mandana Mishra said that he was a Shankara student, prompting his wife, Ubhaya Bharat!, to disclose her real identity. 
    • Shankara's win is often seen as a triumph of his better nondualist metaphysics against Purva-less Mimamsa's complex philosophy. 
    • Although this is true, it was mainly a victory of yogic experientialism over intellectualism. 


    The many-branched school of Uttara-Mimamsa ("Later Inquiry"), also known as Vedanta ("Veda's End"), takes its name from the fact that it arose from the study of the "later" two portions of Vedic revelation: the Aranyakas (forest treatises composed by hermits) and the Upanishads (esoteric gnostic scriptures composed by sages). 

    • Both the Aranyakas and the Upanishads teach the absorption of archaic rites via meditation, which is a metaphoric reworking of the old Vedic legacy. 
    • The Upanishadic doctrines, in particular, gave birth to the Vedanta tradition's whole consciousness technology. 
    • The Upanishads (of which there are over two hundred books), the Bhagavad-Gita (which is accorded the holy rank of an Upanishad and may date from c. 500-600 B.C.E. ), and the Vedanta Brahma-Sutra of Badarayana (c. 200 C.E.) make up the Uttara-Mimamsa school's (Vedanta) literature. 

    Vedanta is the pinnacle of metaphysics. 

    Its many sub-schools all teach one form or another of nondualism, in which Reality is seen as a one, homogenous totality. 

    Sureshvara (the former Mandana Mishra) articulates the basic concept of Vedantic nondualism in the following stanzas from the Naishkarmya-Siddhi ("Perfection of Action-Transcendence"): 

    • The failure to see the single Selfhood [of all things] is [spiritual] ignorance (avidya). 
    • The experience of one's own self is the foundation of [such ignorance]. 
    • It is the beginning of the world's transformation. 

    The emancipation (mukti) of the ego is the elimination of that [spiritual ignorance].

    • The illusion of [there being a separate] self is shattered by the fire of correct knowledge (jnana) originating from magnificent Vedic words. 
    • Because action is not incompatible with ignorance, it does not [eliminate it]. 
    • Action does not eliminate illusion since it originates from ignorance. 
    • Because it is the polar opposite of ignorance, right understanding [alone] can eliminate it, just as the sun is the polar opposite of darkness. 

    One gets scared and flees after mistaking a tree stump for a thief. 

    • Similarly, a misguided individual superimposes the Self on the buddhi [i.e., the higher intellect] and other [aspects of human identity], and then acts [on the basis of that erroneous belief]. 
    • Advaita Vedanta turned the previous Vedic ritualism on its head. 
    • It is a gospel of gnosis, which is the liberating perception of the transcendental Reality, rather than cerebral or factual knowledge. 
    • Shankara (c. 788-820 C.E.) and Ramanuja (c. 788-820 C.E.) were the two greatest exponents of Vedanta. 
    • The former was successful in building a cohesive philosophical framework out of Upanishadic ideas, and is mainly responsible for Hinduism's survival and Buddhism's expulsion from India. 

    Ramanuja, on the other hand, came to the Advaita Vedanta tradition's rescue when it was on the verge of becoming dry scholasticism. 

    • His concept of the Divine as encompassing rather than transcending all characteristics aided the public push for a more devotional Hindu faith. 
    • Many other Vedanta gurus, like Shankara and Ramanuja, have significant ties to the Yoga tradition. 
    • Samkhya has moved toward intellectualism in later times as a result of its focus on discriminative knowledge rather than meditation, while Yoga has always been vulnerable to straying into simple magical psychotechnology. 
    • The Samkhya philosophy has been the most dominant school of thinking within Hinduism, second only to Vedanta, and Shankara saw it as his primary foe. 
    • The Sage Kapila, who is attributed with authorship of the Samkhya-Sutra, is believed to have established Samkhya. 
    • Despite the fact that a teacher with that name existed during the Vedic Era, the Samkhya-Sutra seems to have been written according to certain 


    The Samkhya ("Enumeration") tradition, which includes a wide range of schools, is mainly concerned with enumerating and explaining the major kinds of existence. 

    In Western philosophy, this method is known as "ontology," or "science of being." 

    • Samkhya and Yog are closely related in their metaphysical concepts, and they originally constituted an unified pre-classical school. 
    • However, while Sankhya's disciples utilize discernment (viveka) and renunciation as their primary methods of salvation, yogins primarily use a combination of meditation and renunciation. 
    • Sankhya is often mistakenly described as the theoretical component of Yoga practice. 
    • As late as the fourteenth or fifteenth century C.E., each traditions had their own unique ideas and practical scholars. 

    The Samkhya alluded to in the six darshanas is the school of ishvara Krishna (c. 350 C.E. ), creator of the SamkhyaKarika. 

    • Ishvara Krishna taught that Reality is multiple, not single, in contrast to Vedanta and the older Samkhya schools described in the Mahabharata epic. 
    • On one hand, there are numerous changeable and unconscious forms of Nature (prakriti), and on the other, there are countless transcendental Selves (purusha), which are pure Consciousness, omnipresent, and everlasting. 
    • When examined more carefully, plurality seems to be irrational. 
    • If innumerable Selves are all omnipresent, they must also be endlessly intersecting one another, making them logically identical. 

    While Shankara's nondualism is the most academically beautiful, Ramanuja's qualified nondualism may satisfy both reason and intuition the best. 

    • Ishvara Krishna went on to say that Nature (prakriti) is a huge composite or multidimensional structure produced by the interaction of three main forces: the dynamic characteristics, the material qualities, and the spiritual qualities (guna). 
    • The term guna literally means "strand," yet it has a lot of other meanings. 
    • The word signifies the irreducible ultimate "reals" of the universe in Yoga and Samkhya metaphysics. 

    The three kinds of gunas are believed to mirror the energy quanta of modern physics. 

    • Sattva, rajas, and tamas are the three gunas. 
    • They are at the root of all physical and psychological processes. 
    • Their distinct characteristics are described as follows in the Samkhya-Karika: The [three kinds of] gunas are of the natures of joy, joylessness, and dejection, and have the functions of enlightening, activating, and limiting, respectively. 
    • They outnumber each other, and their actions are interconnected, productive, and cooperative. 
    • Sattva is said to be uplifting and enlightening. 
    • Rajas is energizing and dynamic. 
    • Tamas is passive and oblivious. 

    Like a lamp [made up of many components that together create the single phenomenon of light], the action [of the gunas] is purposeful. 

    • Just as atoms are matter-energy, the gunas are Nature. 
    • They are collectively responsible for the vast diversity of natural forms that exist on all levels of existence, with the exception of the transcendental Selves, who are pure Consciousness. 
    • We can best explain the gunas by the general idea of two opposites and the middle term between them, or as Hegel's thesis, antithesis and synthesis, which are manifested in nature by light, darkness, and mist; in morals by good, bad, and indifferent, with many applications and modifications, according to German Sanskritist Max Muller. 
    • The gunas are in a condition of equilibrium in the transcendental dimension of Nature, known as prakriti-pradhdna ("Nature's basis"), according to the Samkhya-Karika. 

    Mahat, which literally means "great one" or "great principle," is the first product or evolute to emerge in the process of development from this transcendental matrix to the diversity of space-time forms. 

    • Because of its brightness and intelligence, it is also called as buddhi ("intuition" or "cognition"), which means "greater knowledge."
    • But, in fact, mahat (like other elements of Nature) is completely unconscious, and it simply symbolizes a highly refined form of matter-energy. 

    Its "light" of intellect is derived from transcendental Self-Consciousness. 

    • The principle of individuation, ahamkara ("I-maker"), arises from the mahat, or buddhi, and ushers in the difference between subject and object. 
    • The lower mind (manas), the five cognitive senses (sight, smell, taste, touch, and hearing), and the five conative senses all emerge as a result of this existential category (speech, prehension, movement, excretion, and reproduction). 
    • The ahamkara principle is also responsible for the five subtle essences (tanmatra) that underpin sensory capabilities. 
    • The five gross material elements (bhuta), namely earth, water, fire, air, and ether, are produced by them in tum. 
    • As a result, Classical Samkhya acknowledges twenty-four different types of material existence. 

    There are innumerable transcendental Self-monads outside the guna triad and its products, which are unaffected by Nature's ramifications. 

    • The closeness of the transcendental Selves (purusha) to the transcendental matrix of Nature triggers the whole evolutionary process. 
    • Furthermore, the procedure is for the release of those Selves who, for some inexplicable and erroneous reason, identify themselves with a specific body-mind rather than their inherent state of pure Consciousness. 
    • The Samkhya tradition's psychocosmological evolutionism is intended to help people transcend the world rather than understand it. 
    • It is a practical framework for individuals who seek Self-realization and come across many levels or types of existence while practicing meditation. 


    The Vaisheshika ("Distinctionism") school of thought is concerned with the distinctions (vishesha) that exist between things. 

    Liberation is achieved via a comprehensive knowledge of the six fundamental types of existence, according to the teachings:

    l. The ninefold substance (dravya): earth, water, fire, air, ether, time, space, thought (manas), and Self (atman)

    2. quality (guna), which is divided into twenty-three categories, including color, sensory impressions, magnitude, and so forth. 

    3. take action (karma)

    4. universality (samanya or jati)

    5. the specific (vishesha) Yoga particularly refers to the school of Patanjali, the author of the Yoga-Sutra, among the six schools of Hindu philosophy. 

    • This school, also known as Classical Yoga, is regarded a relative of ishvara Krishna's Samkhya school.  

    • Both are dualist ideologies that teach that the transcendental Selves (purusha) are fundamentally different from Nature (prakriti) and that the former is eternally unchanging, while the latter is always changing and therefore unsuitable for long-term pleasure. 

    6. inherence (samavaya), which refers to the logical connection that must exist between wholes and pieces, or substances and their characteristics, and so on. 

    Kanada, the author of the Vaisheshika-Sutra, who flourished about 500 or 600 B.C.E., established the Vaisheshika school. 

    • Kanada seems to be a nickname, literally meaning "particle eater." 
    • Although some Sanskrit sources say that the term immortalizes the fact that this great ascetic lived on grain particles (kana), it is likely that it alludes to the kind of philosophy he developed. 
    • Both readings may be accurate. Kanada's school of thinking has an enigmatic beginning. 

    Some academics believe it is a descendant of the earlier Mimamsa school, while others view it as a continuation of the materialist tradition, and yet others believe it has its origins in a schismatic branch of Jainism. 

    • The Vaisheshika school is similar to the Nyaya system, with which it is usually associated, in terms of general direction and metaphysics. 
    • Both of these systems are the closest to what we think of as philosophy in the West. 
    • They contributed to Indian thinking for a long time, but neither school has remained dominant. 
    • The Vaisheshika school is almost extinct, while the Nyaya school has just a few adherents, most of whom live in Bengal. 


    The Nyaya ("Rule") school of thought was founded by Akshapada Gautama (c.500 B.C.E. ), who lived during a period of intense debate between Vedic ritualism and such heterodox developments as Buddhism and Jainism—an era in which critical thinking and debating were at an all-time high, similar to that of Greece. 

    One of the first efforts to establish sound logic and rhetorical principles was his. 

    • Gautama's moniker, Akshapada, suggests that he had a tendency of gazing down at his feet (perhaps while being immersed in thought or in order to purify the ground while walking). 
    • He is credited with writing the Nyaya-Sutra, which has been the subject of many comments. 
    • Vatsyayana Pakshilasvamin's commentary (c. 400 C.E.) is the earliest surviving commentary, written at a period when Buddhism was still dominant in India. 

    Bharadvaja's or Uddyotakara's Nyaya-Varttika is another excellent commentary, with a good subcommentary by Vacaspati Mishra, who also wrote on Yoga. 

    • Around 1200 C.E., Nyaya began flowering, marking the start of the so-called Nava-Nyaya era (or "New Nyaya"). 
    • In order to live properly and pursue meaningful objectives, Akshapada Gautama began with the realization that we must first define what constitutes right knowledge. 
    • He developed sixteen categories considered essential for anybody wanting to discover the truth, in keeping with the Indic flare for categorization. 
    • These topics include the acquisition of genuine knowledge (pramana), the nature of doubt, and the distinction between discussion and simple bickering. 

    The Nyaya school's metaphysics is of particular importance. 

    • There are several transcendental Subjects, or Selves, according to Nyaya's disciples (atman). 
    • The ultimate actor underlying the human mind is each infinite Self, and each Self enjoys and suffers the consequences of its acts in the limited universe. 
    • God is seen as a unique atman in Classical Yoga, and he is the only one who is aware. 

    The Nyaya thinkers advocated the pursuit of freedom (apavarga) as the greatest aim in life, despite the fact that the human Selves are all regarded unconscious, like in the Mimamsa school. 

    • Of course, their opponents did not miss an opportunity to point out the impossibility of a freedom that would result in a rocklike, insentient life. 
    • The fact that Nyaya followers sought spiritual shelter in Shaivism's religious doctrines demonstrates how little they believed in their own metaphysics. 
    • Between Nyaya and Yoga, there are many places of interaction. 
    • The NyayaSutra describes yoga as a state in which the mind is in touch with the Self alone, resulting in mental balance and a lack of sensitivity to physical discomfort. 

    Vatsyayana Pakshilasvamin said that yogins may see distant and even future occurrences while addressing different kinds of perception, a talent that can be developed by consistent practice of meditative focus. 

    • The word apavarga refers to liberation, and it is also used in the Yoga-Sutra (2. 1 8) to contrast it with the concept of world experience (bhoga). 
    • Another interesting similarity is that both Nyaya and Classical Yoga follow the sphota theory. 
    • The everlasting connection between a word and its sound is referred to by this phrase. 

    The notion is that the letters y, o, g, and a, or even the whole term yoga, cannot adequately express our understanding of the phenomenon known as "Yoga." 

    • Over and above these letters or sounds, there is an everlasting idea, the essence of a thing, which "bursts out" (sphuta) or exposes itself spontaneously in our mind upon hearing a sequence of sounds, leading to understanding of the object so indicated. 
    • A last point of connection is that a Nyaya follower is also known as yauga, which means "one who does Yoga." It's unclear what this designation conceals. 

    Hindu philosophy is divided into six schools, which is rather arbitrary. 

    • Many other schools, particularly those connected with sectarian movements, have played an important role in the development of Indian philosophy at one point or another. 
    • It's important to remember that Yoga impacted most of these methods and traditions, but it did so more as a loose collection of ideas, beliefs, and practices than as Patanjali's philosophical framework (darshana).


    You may also want to read more about Kundalini Yoga here.

    You may also want to read more about Yoga here.

    You may also want to read more about Yoga Asanas and Exercises here.

    You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

    Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.