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November 13 , 2009

The Encyclopedia of Indian Philosophies, Volume 5: The Philosophy of the Grammarians


This volume of the monumental reference series being prepared under the general editorship of Karl Potter provides summaries of the main works in the Grammarian tradition of Indian philosophy. Describing the functions of language on different levels, from ordinary empirical speech to the poetic intuition of the divine, the Grammarians sought to demonstrate that the correct grammatical use of language and the devotional chanting of mantras are ways of moving from lower to higher stages of knowledge and self-realization. This work gives special emphasis to the thought of Bhartrhari, the great systematizer of the Grammarian philosophy. For those unacquainted with Indian philosophy, the editors' introduction provides an explanation of the basic concepts found in the Grammarian texts.

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Grammarian thought is based on the Vedas, and the writings of Panini, Patanjali, Bhartrhari, and others develop implicit Vedic ideas about language and its function. Their works combine a grammatical analysis of Sanskrit language with a philosophy that takes language as divine.

Originally published in 1991.

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

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