The word 'philosophy' as well as the conjuring expression 'Indian philosophy' has meant different things to different people-endeavours and activities, old and new, grave and frivolous, edifying and banal, esoteric and exoteric. In this book, the author has chosen deliberately a very dominant trend of the classical (Sanskrit) philosophical literature as his subject of study. The age of the material used here demands both philological scholarship and philosophical amplification. Classical pramanasastras usually deal with the theory of knowledge, the nature of inference and language, and the related questions of ontology and semantics. Several important concepts and theories have been singled out for critical analysis and clarification in modern terms so that the results may be intelligible to modern students of both Sanskrit and philosophy. It is hoped that such attempt will kindle the enthusiasm of young scholars in the field and inspire them to proceed in this comparatively new area of research and explore into further and more interesting possibilities.
The Late Bimal Krishna Matilal was jubilee scholar in 1954-56, and recipient of Hem Chandra Goswami Prize and Gold Medal in 1956. He started teaching at the University of Toronto, Canada in 1965. He was Spalding Professor of Eastern Religions and Ethics at the University of Oxford. He was the author of The Word and the World: India's Contribution to the Philosophy of Language (OUP India, 1990), Perception: An Essay on Classical Indian Theories of Knowledge (2016), and Logical and Ethical Issues of Religious Belief (1982), and the editor of Moral Dilemmas in the Mahabharata (1989).