Showing posts with label Theories of Error. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Theories of Error. Show all posts

Hinduism - What Are The Theories Of Error In Indian Philosophy?



The subject of how and why humans make mistakes in judgment is seriously addressed in Indian philosophical systems. 

Although these schools may use apparently innocuous examples like mistaken a seashell's glittering flash for a chunk of silver, the investigation of judgment mistakes is ultimately motivated by religious purposes. 

The religious purpose is to obtain real knowledge of the true essence of things and, as a result, to achieve eventual soul liberation (moksha) from the karmic cycle of rebirth (samsara). 

The responses to the truth and falsity issue reflect fundamental disparities in each school's view of the basic essence of things, which have evident consequences for bondage and liberation. 

Although the various schools vary on the mechanics of "how" one sees silver instead of a shell, there is widespread agreement on why this occurs. 

This and other faults are caused by karmic predispositions coming from avidya, most notably greed, which drives people to seek out valuable objects. 

Individual entries provide much more detail, but in general, there are six primary theories of mistake. 

The doctrine is akhyati, or "nondiscrimination," in the Prabhakara branch of the Mimamsa school, in which the basis of mistake is the inability to discern precise differences. 

Anyathakhyati, or "discrimination of something else," is the Naiyayika school's doctrine, in which the mind projects an incorrect perception (pratyaksha) onto another object. 

Kumarila, a Mimamsa philosopher, defines mistake as viparitakhyati, or "contrary discrimination," where the root of error is an incorrect judgment of an object's similarities and differences. 

Sadasatkhyati, or "discrimination of the unreal as the real," is a theory proposed by the Samkhya school, in which the cause of mistake is simply an extension of the initial error to discriminate between the two primary realities, purusha and prakrti. 

The doctrine of satkhyati, or "discrimination of the actual," is proposed by Ramanuja, founder of the Vishishthadvaita Vedanta school, in which one observes the silvery flash accurately but forms an inaccurate inference based on it. 

The Advaita Vedanta school advances the final idea of anirvachaniyakhyati, or "indescribable discrimination," in which one illusory experience is superimposed on another conventionally accurate but ultimately illusory vision. 

See Bijayananda Kar, The Theories of Error in Indian Philosophy, 1978, and Karl H. Potter (ed. ), Presuppositions of India's Philosophies, 1972, for further details. 



You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.