The Absolute of Advaita and the Spirit of Hegel: Situating Vedānta on the Horizons of British Idealisms View Full Text


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Article Info

DATE

2017-01

AUTHORS

Ankur Barua

ABSTRACT

A significant volume of philosophical literature produced by Indian academic philosophers in the first half of the twentieth century can be placed under the rubric of ‘Śaṁkara and X’, where X is Hegel, or a German or a British philosopher who had commented on, elaborated or critiqued the Hegelian system. We will explore in this essay the philosophical significance of Hegel-influenced systems as an intellectual conduit for these Indo-European conceptual encounters, and highlight how for some Indian philosophers the British variations on Hegelian systems were both a point of entry into debates over ‘idealism’ and ‘realism’ in contemporary European philosophy and an occasion for defending Advaita against the charge of propounding a doctrine of world illusionism. Our study of the philosophical enquiries of A.C. Mukerji, P.T. Raju, and S.N.L. Shrivastava indicates that they developed distinctive styles of engaging with Hegelian idealisms as they reconfigured certain aspects of the classical Advaita of Śaṁkara through contemporary vocabulary. These appropriations of Hegelian idioms can be placed under three overlapping styles: (a) Mukerji was partly involved in locating Advaita in an intermediate conceptual space between, on the one hand, Kantian agnosticism and, on the other hand, Hegelian absolutism; (b) Raju and Shrivastava presented Advaitic thought as the fulfilment of certain insights of Hegel and F.H. Bradley; and (c) the interrogations of Hegel’s ‘idealism’ provided several Indian academic philosophers with a hermeneutic opportunity to revisit the vexed question of whether the ‘idealism’ of Śaṁkara reduces the phenomenal world, structured by māyā, to a bundle of ideas. More... »

PAGES

1-17

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http://scigraph.springernature.com/pub.10.1007/s40961-016-0076-4

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40961-016-0076-4

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