Shankara and Indian Philosophy

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SUNY Press, Jan 1, 1993 - Philosophy - 285 pages
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According to Advaita-Vedanta, God or Brahman is identical with the inner self (the Atman) of each person, while the rest of the world is nothing but objective illusion (maya). Shankara maintains that there are two primary levels of existence and knowledge: the higher knowledge that is Brahman itself, and the relative, limited knowledge, regarded as the very texture of the universe. Consequently, the task of a human being is to reach the absolute unity and the reality of Brahman in other words, to reach the innermost self within his or her own being, discarding on the way all temporary characteristics and attributes."
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
The Beginning of Vedanta A Historical Sketch
19
2 Predecessors of Sankara
30
Biography of Śańkara and His Main Works
69
Reliability of Attribution and Compositional Peculiarities
91
Pure Brahman as Consciousness Apophatic Theology and the Problem of Contradiction
105
2 Advaita and Jainism
130
Brahman as Being Cataphatic Theology and the Boldness of Heretics
145
2 Sankara and Mahayana Buddhist Schools
172
Brahman in Language and Ritual Freedom and Moral Duties
199
Advaita and its Closest Counterparts
218
Conclusion
236
2 Vedanta after Sankara
240
Bibliography
256
Index
273
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About the author (1993)

Since taking her Ph.D. from Moscow University, Natalia Isayeva has been a researcher at the Institute of Oriental Studies in Moscow (Academy of Sciences of the USSR).

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