Duty, Language and Exegesis in Prabhakara Mimamsa

Duty, Language and Exegesis in Prabhakara Mimamsa : Including an edition and translation of Ramanujacarya's Tantrarahasya, Sastraprameyapariccheda

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The book is an introduction to key concepts of Indian Philosophy, seen from the perspective of one of its most influential schools, the Prabhakara Mimamsa, which flourished from the 7th until the 20th c. AD. The book includes the critical edition and translation of Ramanujacarya's Sastraprameyapariccheda, which is part of his Tantrarahasya (written in South India, after the 14th c.). This text has never been translated before and it is one of the clearest elaboration of the Prabhakara thought.

The book particularly aims at presenting the linguistic, deontic-ethic, hermeneutic and epistemo-logical thought of the Prabhakara Mimamsa. Detailed glossary and indexes make it possible to use the book as a reference-tool for Indian philosophy and linguistics.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 408 pages
  • 155 x 235 x 25.4mm | 790g
  • Leiden, Netherlands
  • English, Sanskrit
  • Annotated
  • 900422260X
  • 9789004222601

Table of contents

1. Author and Text
1.1. Ra ma nuja ca rya
1.2. The Tantrarahasya
1.3. Quotations in the Tantrarahasya
1.4. Sources
1.5. Structure of TR IV

2. Exhortation
2.1. Bha vana and Vidhi According to the Bha t t as
2.2. Bha t t a Theories on Exhortative Expressions in TR IV

3. Exhortation and Duty
3.1. Pra bha kara Theories on Exhortative Expressions in TR IV
3.2. The Sacred Texts' Loop (TR IV 9.1)
3.3. A Possible Way Out (TR IV 9.2)
3.4. Reaching Duty through Metaphor (TR IV 9.3-TR IV 9.3.2; TR IV 9.4-TR IV 9.5.1; TR IV 9.11)
3.5. Actions and Duty
3.6. An Unprecedented Duty Does Not Have to Be Grasped (TR IV 9.10-TR IV 9.10.4)
3.7. Reasons to Act (TR IV 9.12-TR IV 9.15)
3.8. Epistemological Conclusions of 2 and 3

4. Hermeneutics of Sacrifice
4.1. Introduction
4.2. Ritual Auxiliaries
4.3. Archetypes and Ectypes (TR IV 6-TR IV 7)
4.4. Bha t t a Hermeneutics in TR IV
4.5. Pra bha kara Hermeneutics in TR IV

5. Prescriptions and Apu rva
5.1. Prescriptions According to the Bha t t as (TR IV 5)
5.2. Apu rva as the Centre of the Veda

6. Desire and Contrary-to-Duty Obligations
6.1. Desire (TR IV 10.2-TR IV 10.11)
6.2. The S yena Sacrifice (TR IV 3.16.1, TR IV 4.3.3, TR IV
6.3. S yena according to Deontic Logic (TR IV 11.3.1)

7. Grammar and Exegesis
7.1. Ka rakas as Functions (TR IV 3.13.2, TR IV 11.7.1)
7.2. Linguistic Implications of TR Hermeneutics (and Vice Versa)

8. Methodology and Introductory Remarks
8.1. Tantrarahasyas iks a 2177 Mysore
8.2. History of M and Dating
8.3. Evaluation of the Witnesses and an Attempt of a Stemma Codicum
8.4. Critical Edition

1. man gala

2. siddha nta on ka rya as the Core of Prescriptions

3. PP: The Linguistic bha vana is the Core of Prescriptions
3.1. Ma n dana: A Prescription Expresses the Means for Realising What Is Desired
3.2. Pa rthasa rathi Mis ra against TR IV 3.1
3.3. Other Bha t t as: The Notion That the Action to Be Undertaken Is an Instrument to a Desired End might Be Implicit
3.4. PP (Ritualists): The Prescription Is Tantamount to the Optative and Similar Suffixes
3.5. UP: Then Everyone Would Act! If There Are Further Conditions, the Thesis Has already Been Refuted
3.6. Kuma rila on Linguistic bha vana and Objective bha vana (vs. TR IV 3.1.1)
3.7. S against TR IV 3.6
3.8. Kuma rila: Optative and Similar Suffixes Express Two bha vana s (as above TR IV 3.6; vs. TR IV 3.7)
3.9. S: Verbal Suffixes Do not Express the bha vana , but just the Agent's Number
3.10. S: Optative and Similar Suffixes Express the Notion that Something Must Be Done and, therefore, also the bha vana
3.11. PP/ekades in against TR IV 3.10: The bha vana could Be Understood as a Specification of What Must Be Done
3.12. Further Arguments of the S about Duty Implying an E_fort and not the Opposite
3.13. Other Bha t t as: The Prescription is the Function of the Optative and Similar Suffixes, and It Is a Cognition
3.14. Bha t t a Continuing TR IV 3.13
3.15. Pa rthasa rathi Mis ra vs. TR IV 3.14: The Function of Optative and Similar Suffixes Cannot Incite
3.16. Bha t t a Adjusting TR IV 3.13 According to TR IV 3.15
3.17. (Siddha nta among Bha t t as) Pa rthasa rathi: Incitement Can Be of Four Kinds. It Is Surely of the Fourth Type in the Veda, as this is Authorless

4. Connections of Elements to the Principal Prescription (According to Pa rthasa rathi Mis ra)
4.1. Connection of Semantemes within the Prescriptive Sentence
4.2. Connection of Other Sentences to the Main Sentence
4.3. Means of Knowledge for Ascertaining the Connection of the bha vana , of What Must Be Realised, of the Instrument, and of the Procedure in Archetypes

5. Kinds of Prescriptions
5.1. Originative Prescription and Its Inner Partition (Prescription about the Unprecedented and Restrictive Prescription)
5.2. Application Prescription
5.3. Prescription regarding the Responsibility
5.4. Promoting Prescription
5.5. Interactions among Prescriptions

6. Accomplishing the Prescription in Archetypes
6.1. Accomplishing the Prescription in Ectypes
6.2. Differences between Archetype and Ectype for Accomplishing the Prescription: Principles of Analogical Extension
6.3. Modifucation

7. Summary of the Bha t t a Position
7.1. Summary of TR IV 4-TR IV 6
7.2. Summary of the siddha nta of TR IV 3

8. Siddha nta
8.1. Siddha nta against TR IV 7.1
8.2. Siddha nta against TR IV 3.17
8.3. Siddha nta as in TR IV 2

9. Is the apu rva Denoted by Exhortative Endings?
9.1. PP against TR IV 8.3: What Must Be Done Cannot Be Unprecedented, because Then One would not Comprehend Its Meaning
9.2. Something to Be Done Can instead Be Expressed as an Action by the Verbal Root, while the Optative Endings only Express the Number (see supra TR IV 3.9-TR IV 3.10)
9.3. S against the TR IV 9.2: The Optative (lin ) and the Other Suffixes Surely Denote Something to Be Done. This Is Totally New (apu rva), because It Can Be Connected with "The One Who Is Desirous of Heaven" and Similar Words (Indicating an Enjoined Person) (and Heaven Can Only Be Brought about by Something Exceeding Our Normal Experience, see TR IV 9.3.2)
9.4. PP: Let It Be That the Vedic Injunctions Express the Action as Something to Be Done
9.5. S against TR IV 9.1: It Is Possible to Understand a Transcendent Thing to Be Done because One already Knows the Words Expressing It as Bearing the Meaning of an Action to Be Done, and the Syntactical Closeness to the Enjoined Person Specifies Them (the Words)
9.6. PP (Pra bha kara): One Can Learn the Meaning also with regard to a Transcendent Thing to Be Done
9.7. S vs. TR IV 9.6: Only an Action Can Be Directly Understood, not a Transcendent Thing to Be Done
9.8. PP (See TR IV 9.4.8): The Action Is Principal; That It Must Be Done Is Known through Indirect Signification
9.9. S vs.TR IV 9.8: No, There Cannot Be Indirect Signification with regard to What Is Unprecedented
9.10. PP (Man d ana), See TR IV 3.1, TR IV 9.4.8
9.11. Summary of TR IV 9.9-TR IV 9.10: In Ordinary Experience, the Optative and Similar Suffixes Designate the Action and, through Inference, What Must Be Done; in the Veda, They Denote What Must Be Done as Shown by the Contiguity to Well-Known Words (See TR IV 9.5.1)
9.12. PP vs. TR IV 9.11: One Acts because of Will (See supra, TR IV 3.8)
9.13. S vs. TR IV 9.12
9.14. PP: The Optative and Other Suffixes Designate Impulsion, Request and Consent, not What Must Be Done
9.15. S vs. TR IV 9.14: Impulsion, etc., Merely Depend on Speaker and Hearer

10. Connection of the Result
10.1. PP: In Optional Rituals the Result Is the Principal Element
10.2. S vs. TR IV 10.1: The Result Is a Specification of the Enjoined Person
10.3. The Real Thing to Be Brought about Is Just the Non-Precedented [Thing to Be Done]
10.4. Succession of Desirous, Enjoined, Responsible, Agent
10.5. What Happens if the Enjoined Person Is not Specified by a Result?
10.6. PP: If a Result Is Needed as a Specification of the Enjoined Person, why Do Fixed and Occasional Rituals and Prohibitions not Have a Result?
10.7. S vs. TR IV 10.6: Indeed, the Enjoined Person is Specified even in Fixed and Occasional Rituals
10.8. PP/Naiya yika: What Is Known through the Veda is Contradicted by Inference!
10.9. S vs. TR IV 10.8: No Inference Can Occur with regard to Something That Is Known through the Veda
10.10. PP: What Happens if Certain People, despite Being Endowed with Ritual Responsibility, Do not Act?
10.11. Non-Performing Dharma, Which Is a Human Aim, Is in Itself Something not Desired

11. Connection of the Other Elements to the apu rva
11.1. Connection vs. TR IV 4.2
11.2. Aspects of the Non-Precedented Thing to Be Done, vs. TR IV 5
11.3. The Promoter Role of the Non-Precedented Duty
11.4. Promoting Power of Supreme and Intermediate apu rvas
11.5. The Relation with the Enjoined Person Pertains to the Promoting apu rva
11.6. The Connection of apu rva and Content is Inevitable
11.7. Connection of the Meaning of the Verbal Root as the Instrument (cf. TR IV 3.13.2)

12. Summary of TR IV 10-TR IV 11 (vs. TR IV 4.2.8 and TR IV 7)
12.1. Connection of the Full and New Moon Prescriptions as Prescribing a Single Sacrfice through Closeness, Expectation and Fitness
12.2. Reciprocal Expression of Connected Words between the Auxiliaires and the Principal Prescription: The Difference between Directly and Indirectly Contributing Auxiliaries
12.3. Grasping through the Grasper

13. Conclusion regarding apu rva as the Prescription

Index of Passages of TR IV
General Index
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Review quote

In this first ever translation of Ramanujacarya's Tantrarahasya she (Freschi [ed]) has unraveled the complicated inter-Mimamsa argument over the prescription theory through minute philological investigation. In addition her succint explanation of the technical terms in Mimamsa hermeneutics (chap. 4.) as well as the glossary supplied in the appendix, offer readers - even non-specialists - considerable help in better understanding Ramanujacarya thought. - Taisei Shida, Kyoto University Japan.
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About Elisa Freschi

Elisa Freschi, PhD in South Asian Studies, has studied both Indian and Western Philosophy. Currently Research Fellow of Sanskrit at the University "Sapienza", Rome, Italy, she has published on the history of ideas in various schools of Indian philosophy.
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