Arthāpatti (postulation? cogent evidence? derivation?) in Kumārila

Kumārila dedicated to arthāpatti eighty-eight verses in his Ślokavārttika (which is a commentary on the epistemological section of the Śābarabhāṣya). One would expect that also his Bṛhaṭṭīkā, which comments on the same text, contained a portion on arthāpatti and this is indirectly confirmed by further evidences:

  1. The verse said to be extracted from the Bṛhaṭṭīkā in the Mānameyoda‘s section on arthāpatti (discussed here)
  2. Four verses on arthāpatti attributed by Śālikanātha* to the Vārttikakāra (i.e., Kumārila) but not found in his Ślokavārttika

All these texts agree, among other things, on a major distinction between inference and arthāpatti, namely the fact that the vyāpti, the ‘invariable concomitance’ between what will be known and its logical reason, is already at the epistemic disposal of the knower before the anumāna, whereas in the case of the arthāpatti the knower, so to say, discovers it “on the go”, at the time of reaching the result of the arthāpatti. In other words, one would not have been able to say beforehand that there is an invariable concomitance between the set of people who, being alive, are not at home, and the set of people who are out of their home, until one had reached the conclusion that Devadatta must be outside.

For further details, see Yoshimizu 2007 (in Preisendanz (ed.) Expanding and Merging Horizons).

*I am obliged to Kiyotaka Yoshimizu who kindly alerted me to these verses.

Dharmakīrti Conference—Summary of my posts

You can read my views on the written version of the paper presented by Kei Kataoka on apoha (and of the views by Kiyotaka Yoshimizu discussed in it) here, here and here.
A discussion of K. Yoshimizu’s paper (on the chronology of Kumārila and Dharmakīrti) can be found here.

A summary of likes and dislikes of my readers and colleagues can be read here (don’t forget to add your own favs).

What was Dignaga’s theory of apoha? On PS 5.43

The sequence of opponents and discussants within the Pramāṇasamuccaya is difficult to reconstruct and one might need to gather informations from many different sources. In the following I will focus on a specific problem:

  • is the example of the presence of horns as leading to “non-horse” an instance of the way apoha works (as with Yoshimizu, which supports in this way his analysis of Dignāga’s procedure as entailing a compositional analysis) or just an example about an inference, which works in a way similar as the apoha, i.e., does not need to exclude elements one by one (as with Kataoka, who thus supports his claim that Dignāga does not need any positive postulation).

What was Dignaga’s theory of apoha? On PS 5.41–42 SECOND UPDATE

The main point of departure for any inquiry into Dignāga’s theory of apoha is his Pramāṇasamuccaya, chapter 5. Unluckily enough, this text is only available as a reconstruction from the two (divergent) Tibetan translations and from Jinendrabuddhi’s commentary.

How exactly does one seize the meaning of a word? K. Yoshimizu 2011 (and Kataoka forthc.) on Dignāga and Kumārila UPDATED

We all know that for Dignāga the meaning of a word is apoha ‘exclusion’. But how does one seize it and avoid the infinite regress of excluding non-cows because one has understood what “cow” means? Kataoka at the last IABS maintained (if I understood him correctly) that Dignāga did not directly face the problem of how could one seize the absence of non-cows. He also explained that the thesis he attributes to Hattori and Yoshimizu, which makes the apoha depend on the seizing of something positive (e.g., one seizes the exclusion of non-cows because one seizes the exclusion of dewlap, etc.) contradicts the negative nature of apoha, since it indirectly posits positive entities, such as dewlaps. But this leaves the question of how apoha can take place in the worldly experience open.

K. Yoshimizu on valid inferences in Kumārila (and on the chronology of Kumārila and Dharmakīrti)

All nice things come to an end, and so did the IABS conference. Now, many among you will be heading to Heidelberg for the Dharmakīrti Conference. Although I will not be able to attend, I received from K. Yoshimizu his paper for it, with the assent to discuss it here.

Who studied Mīmāṃsā deontics?

Since Mīmāṃsā (both in its Bhāṭṭa and in its Prābhākara subschools) focused primarily on the exegesis of the prescriptive portion of the Vedic Sacred Texts, the Mīmāṃsā texts offer richly developed discussions of deontic issues, both from a linguistic and from a logic point of view. Unfortunately, the lack of philosophically accessible translations has made most of such discussions remain confined to Sanskritists.