The study of Patanjali Surendranath Dasgupta

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The study of Patanjali  by  Surendranath Dasgupta

The study of Patanjali by Surendranath Dasgupta
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PREFACEThis book was hurriedly written as the Griffith Prize essay as early as 1914, aud it is published in a great hurry on the eve of my departure for England. Had it not been for the encouragement of the Honble Chief Justice Sir AsutoshMorePREFACEThis book was hurriedly written as the Griffith Prize essay as early as 1914, aud it is published in a great hurry on the eve of my departure for England. Had it not been for the encouragement of the Honble Chief Justice Sir Asutosh Mookerjee, Kt., C.S.I., the great patron of learning, this essay would never have been published.

I have tried to give here an account of the Yoga System of thought as contained in the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali as interpreted by Vyasa, Vachaspati and Vijnana Bhikshu with occasional references to the views of other systems. My work Yoga Philosophy in relation to other Indian Systems of Thought which I hope will be published shortly by the University of Calcutta is a more advanced and comprehensive work than the present attempt.

But since it may yet take some time before that book is published I do not much hesitate to publish this essay. This is my earliest attempt on Indian Philosophy and no one probably is more conscious of its defects as myself. As I had to stay far away from Calcutta at Chittagong and as I had no time in my hands owing to my departure to England, I do very much regret that I could not properly supervise the work of its printing. Many errors of printing have consequently escaped. It is however hoped that the errors may not be such that they will inconvenience the reader much.

So little work has up till now been done in the field of Indian Philosophy that in spite of its many defects, the authorhas some excuse in publishing it. The author will consider all his labours rewarded if this essay is found to be of any use in any quarter.It may seem convenient that before entering into the details of the work I should give a brief outline of the Yoga System of Patanjali at the very beginning of the work, which I hope may be of some use to the beginners.The Study of PatanjaliHowever dogmatic a system of philosophical enquirymay appear to us, it must have been preceded by acriticism of the observed facts ofIntroductory.

...knowledge. The details of the criticism and the processes of self-argumentation by which the thinker arrived at his theory of the Universe might indeed be suppressed, as being relatively unimportant but a thoughtful reader would detect them as lying in the background behind the shadow of the general speculations, but at the same time setting them off before our view.

An Aristotle or a Patanjali may not make any direct mention of the arguments which led them to a dogmatic assertion of their theories, but for a reader who intends to understand them thoroughly it is absolutely necessary that he should read theiri in the light as far as possible of the inferred presuppositions and inner arguments of their minds- it is in this way alone that he can put himself in the same line of thinking with the thinker he is willing to follow and can grasp him to the fullest extent.

In offering this short study of the Patanjala metaphysics, I shall therefore try to supplement it with such of my inferences of the presuppositions of Patanjalis mind, which I think will add to the clearness of the exposition of his views, though 1 am fully alive to the difficulties of making such inferences about a philosopher whose psychological, social, religious and moral environments differed so widely from ours.An entity into the relations of the mental phenomena to the physical has sometimes given the first start to philosophy.

The relation of mind to Philosophical enqui- matter j s suc h an important problem ...



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