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Exploring Hindu Philosophy

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This introductory text points to some of the diverse tapestries of Hindu worldviews where scriptural revelation, logical argumentation, embodied affectivity, moral reasoning, and aesthetic cultivation constitute densely interwoven conceptual threads. It begins with an exploration of some classical iterations of the quest for a fundamental ontology amidst the diversities of the everyday world. This quest is often embedded in both a diagnosis of the human condition as structured by suffering and a therapy for recovery from worldly fragmentation. A crucial aspect of this therapeutic structure is the analysis of the means of knowledge and the categories of reality, since in order to know the nature of the world one must proceed along truth-tracking routes. Such dynamic mind-world encounters are mediated through language, and Hindu philosophical texts extensively discuss the motif of whether or not deep reality can be comprehended through linguistic structures. These philosophical exercises also shape reflections on themes such as aesthetics, social organization, the meaning of life, and so on. As Hinduism increasingly migrates to western locations through practices of yoga, meditation, and mindfulness, and along with sensibilities relating to vegetarianism, ecology, and pacifism, we encounter multiple translations of these classical motifs relating to the self, language, and consciousness.

Published: Apr 6, 2023


Section Chapter Authors
Preface Ankur Barua
Series Foreword Mohammed Rustom
Conceptual Constellations Ankur Barua
Chapter 1
Unity and its Concrete Multitudes Ankur Barua
Chapter 2
Knowing the Roots of Reality Ankur Barua
Chapter 3
Therapies for Liberation Ankur Barua
Chapter 4
Finding a Home in the World Ankur Barua
Chapter 5
Multiple Modes of Morality Ankur Barua
Reorienting the Mind’s Compass Ankur Barua
End Matter
Glossary Ankur Barua
Notes Ankur Barua
Bibliography Ankur Barua
Further Reading Ankur Barua
Index Ankur Barua


This book is a thought-provoking, wide-ranging, and stimulating introduction to Hindu philosophy. Barua does an admirable job of lucidly explaining complex ideas without oversimplifying them.
Swami Medhananda (Ayon Maharaj), Senior Research Fellow in Philosophy, Ramakrishna Institute of Moral and Spiritual Education, India

With humour and precision, Ankur Barua’s Exploring Hindu Philosophy offers the reader a delightful, accessible, and yet deeply insightful guide to the multiplicity of “structured visions” that interweave and intersect into Hindu philosophy. Highly recommended for audiences at every level.
Jonardon Ganeri, Bimal K. Matilal Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, University of Toronto