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Book: Exploring Hindu Philosophy

Chapter: Knowing the Roots of Reality

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.42876


Nyāya philosophers give us a world structured with certain objective features, and human cognisers begin to know these features through various forms of fallible generalization. If a certain generalization is doubted, it has to be examined through reflective inquiry. There is a structural correlation between knowledge sources (pramāṇa) and objects of knowledge (prameya). Nyāya philosophers outlined various forms of pseudo-reasons which indicate ways in which the compass point of reasoning, instead of being turned towards reality, has deviated from reality. A topic of lively debate relates to whether or not the knowledge sources of perception and inference are sufficiently robust to take us from the finite world to the divine source. Across these philosophical milieus, the proper understanding of the nature of the human self and the divine self and their interrelation is key to human flourishing within the world, and spiritual fulfilment across multiple forms of worldly existence.

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