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Is there Correlative Thought in Indian Philosophy?

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Abstract

Some recent articles present a theory to explain the presence of correlative thought in a number of cultures, and of high-correlative systems of thought in a number of them. The present article does not criticize this theory in general, but shows that it: is of little use in the Indian context.
IS THERE CORRELATIVE THOUGHT IN
INDIAN PHILOSOPHY?
BY
JOHANNES BRONKHORST
A recent article called “Neurobiology, layered texts, and correlative
cosmologies”
1
by Steve Farmer, John B. Henderson and Michael Witzel
(henceforth FHW) argues that correlative thought is not confined to one
or just a few cultures. Rather, the deepest roots of correlative thought lie
in neurobiological processes. Parallel developments in correlative cos-
mologies, it is maintained, provide a potent cross-cultural framework for
premodern studies in general. This is a very interesting proposition
which deserves close consideration. The present article cannot do it full
justice, and will merely explore one of its aspects in relation to Indian
culture. But before such an exploration can take place, clarification of
some of the issues involved must be attempted.
What, to begin with, is correlative thought? FHW use this expression
to refer to “a general propensity to organize natural, political/social, and
cosmological data in highly ordered arrays or systems of correspon-
dence” (p. 49). Correlative thought is a recognized feature of Chinese
culture (since Marcel Granet’s La pensée chinoise, 1934) but, FHW
maintain, “similar tendencies can be identified in every traditional civi-
lization known”. Indeed, “[c]orrelative structures show up world wide
in premodern magical, astrological, and divinational systems; in the
designs of villages, cities, temples, and court complexes; in abstract
orders of gods, demons, and saints; and in many similar phenomena”.
Our authors then continue: “The idea that reality consists of multiple
‘levels’, each mirroring all others in some fashion, is a diagnostic feature
1
This article appeared in the volume for 2000 of the Bulletin of the Museum of Far
Eastern Antiquities, which came out in 2002.
Journal Asiatique 296.1 (2008): 9-22
doi: 10.2143/JA.296.1.2034491
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of premodern cosmologies in general; tracing this idea from its primitive
origins to its modern decline is one of the major challenges faced by spe-
cialists in premodern thought.”
FHW distinguish between correlative thought in general on the one
hand, and ‘high-correlative’ systems which can arise out of it on the
other. High-correlative systems are “multileveled reflecting cosmolo-
gies, nested hierarchies, abstract systems of correspondences, and simi-
lar developments” and grow “as byproducts of exegetical processes
operating in layered textual traditions over extensive periods” (p. 48).
Following FHW, we must therefore distinguish two stages, each in need
of its own explanation. Here our authors have the following to say (p.
64): “Neurobiology highlights what might be termed the primitive
default conditions in correlative thought. But it cannot on its own
explain how or why high-correlative systems evolved in advanced pre-
modern civilization.” It cannot, because here the layered texts which fig-
ure in the title of the article come into play: “Many of the most distinc-
tive features of high-correlative systems can be modeled as syncretic
byproducts, or ‘exegetical artifacts’, of repeated attempts to reconcile
conflicts in heavily layered textual traditions.”
A further statement about the relationship, and difference, between
correlative thought in general and ‘high-correlative’ systems with spe-
cial reference to developments in the West can be found in the book Syn-
cretism in the West: Pico’s 900 Theses (1486) by S. A. Farmer (1998),
one of the authors of the article under consideration (pp. 83-84):
Renaissance magic… was grounded on the principles of what since
Frazer’s time has been commonly referred to as imitative or sympathetic
magic. In its nonliterate varieties, imitative magic in all periods in the West
differed little from the primitive correlative magic practiced universally in
preliterate societies. At its foundations lay loose metaphorical networks
potentially linking every object in nature — expressed anthropomorphi-
cally, nature’s “loves” and “hatreds,” “sympathies” and “antipathies.”…
In purely oral traditions little effort was made to transform these metaphor-
ical networks into more complex formal systems… In the literate magical
traditions… the situation was different. Starting in the Hellenistic era, these
networks were progressively tightened and systematized, eventually fusing
with the broader hierarchical cosmologies of late Greek Neo-Platonism and
related traditions.
10 J. BRONKHORST
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To these two stages — correlative thought and high-correlative systems
— a third must be added, corresponding to the “modern decline” men-
tioned earlier, viz., “the final collapse of those systems in the early sci-
entific era”. This collapse, FHW point out (p. 74), is due to some
“exceptional nonlinear conditions”. In a note (no. 66) they add: “Given
their origins in neurobiological processes, correlative tendencies obvi-
ously show up in different ways in modern traditions; we plan to discuss
this issue elsewhere”.
The present article will skip the arguments meant to show the neuro-
biological foundations of correlative systems. The conclusion seems
plausible enough, even though it is less clear, at least to the present
author, how the arguments presented lead up to it. We will rather con-
centrate on the transition from correlative thought in general to high-cor-
relative systems in India, a transition which is supposedly due to layered
texts and all that accompanies their formation. About this transition
FHW provide the following information (p. 51 ff.):
Especially rich evidence on the early stages of high-correlative thought
survives in early Vedic traditions, preserved in heavily layered texts from
the middle third of the first millennium BCE that vastly outnumber extant
Chinese and Greek sources from the same period. Correlative ideas in
Vedic traditions, often (but not exclusively) referred to as “bandhus
(bandhu = relation, bond, connection, etc.) have been discussed by a long
line of Indologists… Claims have been made that all of Vedic philosophy
depended on what Sinologists would immediately recognize as “correla-
tive thought” — although Indologists do not use that phrase — emerging
in increasingly complex and abstract forms in successive strata of tightly
linked Brahmaas, Arayakas, UpaniÒads, and Sutras in Vedic tradi-
tions…
… By the middle of the first millennium BCE, at the latest, we find elabo-
rate high-correlative systems emerging in Vedic traditions as exegetes
struggled to harmonize heavily layered ritual texts passed on from earlier
eras. To cite just one example: In later strata of the Taittiriya Brahmaa,
apparently dating from early in the second half of the millennium, we find
elaborate lists of bandhus in which each Vedic god is systematically corre-
lated with unique numbers, consorts, ritual meters, directions, seasons,
hours of the day, priestly orders, oblations, sacrificial animals, and similar
phenomena…. Similar correlations are even more fully developed in Vedic
UpaniÒads and Sutras from the last half of the millennium, which exegeti-
cally “worked up”… earlier traditions in even more abstract directions.
IS THERE CORRELATIVE THOUGHT IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY? 11
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A number of questions present themselves at this point. In this case it is
clear what is meant by correlative, even high-correlative, thought, pre-
cisely because a long line of Indologists have discussed it (without nec-
essarily using that expression). This however gives rise to the first ques-
tion: Why should this kind of thought grow “as byproducts of exegetical
processes operating in layered textual traditions over extensive peri-
ods”? Why should many of its most distinctive features be “syncretic
byproducts, or ‘exegetical artifacts’, of repeated attempts to reconcile
conflicts in heavily layered textual traditions”? What exactly happens in
exegetical processes that might explain this?
Details about these processes are given in the following passage
(FHW p. 69):
One consequence of layering processes was that the texts available… were
increasingly loaded with contradictions; ironically, authorship of those
texts was typically ascribed to ancient seers, sage-kings, “school”
founders, mythic heroes, prophets, or divine forces, implying exactly the
reverse — that those texts could not be contradictory; that every apparent
conflict hid secret truths. That assumption led to the application of a broad
spectrum of exegetical tools to unveil those truths, resulting in predictable
correlative transformations of earlier sources. By the end of the fourth cen-
tury BCE, developments of this sort were already well on course in the
Middle East, Greece, India, and China; repeated use of similar exegetical
methods in all these regions resulted in accelerated abstract developments
in otherwise unrelated religious, philosophical, and cosmological traditions
— efficiently explaining many so-called axial age effects.
Further
2
information can be found in another article, “Commentary tra-
ditions and the evolution of premodern religious and philosophical sys-
tems: a cross-cultural model”, this one by Steve Farmer, John B. Hen-
derson, and Peter Robinson (FHR, 2002). We learn from it that
commentators were confronted with the task of reconciling or “syn-
cretizing” traditions (FHR p. 2). They had to free authoritative traditions
from internal contradictions or to harmonize them with foreign tradi-
tions. One way to attain this goal is the introduction of “scholastic dis-
tinctions”, for example levels in heaven and hell (FHR p. 3). This
process repeated itself numerous times, since the outcome of a preceding
12 J. BRONKHORST
2
Most of the following two paragraphs occurs verbatim in Bronkhorst, 2006.
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“layer” of commentatorial activity is the basis for the next one. Each
new layer of tradition, whether embodied in canonical texts or later com-
mentaries, tended to transform the products of earlier strata in pre-
dictable ways (FHR p. 5). We can therefore speak of the repetitive appli-
cation to sacred and semisacred traditions of a relatively small, and
largely culturally invariant, series of commentatorial techniques. The
commentators were obliged, not only to syncretize opposing or foreign
traditions, but also to harmonize conflicting layers of canonical texts
(FHR p. 6).
The results of this multi-layered commentatorial activity could gener-
ate, among other things, abstract pantheons of gods, monotheistic
deities, or abstract ethical or cosmological principles. In later traditions,
our authors maintain, typical products included dualistic or trinitarian
concepts of deity, broad systems of correspondences, multileveled pic-
tures of heaven or hell, elaborate emanational systems, and other diag-
nostic features of scholastic traditions. They add: “Over many centuries,
higher-level integrations of structures like these gave birth to elaborate
multilayered correlative systems — Neo-Platonic, Neo-Confucian, Bud-
dhist, Hindu, Islamic, or Christian cosmologies, etc. — whose levels of
self-similarity tended to increase whenever those traditions inbred and
grew in complexity.” (FHR p. 6).
It is more or less understandable that the obligation to make sense of
“syncretizing” traditions may have led commentators to pursue a num-
ber of exegetical strategies, such as identifying gods from different tra-
ditions, making place for “foreign” gods by introducing refined distinc-
tions, etc. etc. It is harder to understand why this should inevitably lead
to correlative or even high-correlative thought. What exegetical situation
would be solved by systematically correlating “each Vedic god… with
unique numbers, consorts, ritual meters, directions, seasons, hours of the
day, priestly orders, oblations, sacrificial animals, and similar phenom-
ena”? No answer is even attempted by our authors, as far as I can see.
This takes us to a second question: What reason is there to believe
that the high-correlative systems which we find in Vedic literature are
the result of multi-layered commentatorial activity trying to free the own
tradition from internal contradictions or to harmonize them with foreign
traditions? To the best of my knowledge there is none whatsoever. The
IS THERE CORRELATIVE THOUGHT IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY? 13
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high-correlative thought present in Vedic literature is no doubt
extremely interesting, and its parallels with similar phenomena in China
and the West have not sufficiently been studied. But far from being the
result of multi-layered commentatorial activity of the kind described, it
creates the impression of being a more or less consciously cultivated
characteristic of Vedic society, especially in late-Vedic times, which
sought to distinguish itself in this way from others
3
.
The passage about India cited above continues as follows (FHW
p. 53-54):
Correlative systems of still greater complexity, especially rich in numero-
logical associations, are found in early Buddhist and Jainist texts compiled
near the close of the millennium.
By the early common era, centuries of reworkings of these layered texts
had given birth to high-scholastic systems of extraordinary elaboration.
These developments are beautifully illustrated in the intricate logical-mys-
tical constructs of the massive seventh book of the Buddhist Abhidhamma
Piaka… Correlative systems of the same general type as those seen in
post-classical Daoism in China, or in contemporary gnostic, Neo-Pytha-
gorean, or Neo-Platonic traditions in the West, can be studied in later strata
of the Mahabharata and Puraas, in countless tantric and ma∞∂ala sources,
and in late-ancient and medieval scholastic systems subdivided (just as
elsewhere in the Old World) into a profusion of warring “schools”. Fresh
developments in these systems continued to appear up through the Mughal
period, exhibiting structural features similar to those seen in contemporary
high-syncretic systems from the European Renaissance or Ming dynasty.
These parallel developments can be simply explained by the fact that those
systems arose from integrations of layered traditions whose temporal depth
and complexities were of roughly the same magnitude in each previous
stage of history, stretching from the mid first millennium BCE until early
modern times.
This passage is not as clear as one might wish. It concerns post-Vedic
India, but does not refer to any secondary literature, unlike the part deal-
ing with the Vedic period. For this later period it mentions as sole exam-
ple of presumably high-correlative thought a book from the Abhid-
hamma Piaka of Theravada Buddhism. The reason for this is no doubt
to be sought in the remark, made on p. 54, saying that “while bandhus
14 J. BRONKHORST
3
Bronkhorst, 1999: 52-53; 2007 (esp. ch. IV.1 “Discworld meets roundworld”).
Note that the idea that Vedic culture is syncretistic is not new; see, e.g., Parpola, 1997.
Journal Asiatique 296.1 (2008): 9-22
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and upaniÒads in Indian traditions have been discussed continuously
since the nineteenth century, the importance assigned to correlative
thought by Indologists has never approached the levels found in Chinese
studies, hampering the comparison of cosmological developments in the
two civilizations”. This suggests that there simply is no secondary liter-
ature about correlative thought (by whatever name it may be called) in
post-Vedic Indian literature. The cited passage shows, however, that in
FHW’s opinion the presence of high-correlative thought in those later
Indian sources is obvious and undeniable. More in particular, their
remark to the extent that “[c]orrelative systems… can be studied… in
late-ancient and medieval scholastic systems subdivided… into a profu-
sion of warring ‘schools’” suggests that what is commonly referred to as
“Indian philosophy” exemplifies correlative thought. This is remark-
able. The presence of “high-correlative” thought in the Veda is clear
and beyond doubt. This literature also constitutes its pinnacle. Similar
ways of thinking, especially about cosmic correspondences, find expres-
sion later on in certain genres of literature, prominently among these
Tantric literature
4
, but never again with the same intensity.
In this context it is of interest to consider an article by Michael Witzel
called “Macrocosm, mesocosm, and microcosm: The persistent nature of
‘Hindu’ beliefs and symbolic forms” (1997). This article suggests conti-
nuities and analogs of some structures of modern Newar Hinduism with
those of the Vedic period. Some of these persistences include the proce-
dure found in the Brahmaa texts of analyzing the universe on three lev-
els and connecting these by a series of ‘identifications’ (homologies), for
example, and the use of ‘creative etymologies’ (p. 503). All this seems to
confirm that “(high-)correlative thought”, where present in post-Vedic
India, continues a Vedic tradition. There is no suggestion that exegetical
strategies have to be invoked to explain its presence in recent forms of
Hinduism.
We will return to these issues in a while. Let us first try to get a fuller
grasp of FHW’s ideas. One of the studies on which their article is based
is the book Scripture, Canon, and Commentary: A comparison of Con-
fucian and Western exegesis by John B. Henderson (1991), one of the
IS THERE CORRELATIVE THOUGHT IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY? 15
4
Cf. Filliozat, 1999.
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authors of the article that engages our attention. The title of this book
suggests that it may contain information as to how high-correlative sys-
tems come about. Remember FHW’s statement, already quoted above:
“Many of the most distinctive features of high-correlative systems can
be modeled as syncretic byproducts, or ‘exegetical artifacts’, of repeated
attempts to reconcile conflicts in heavily layered textual traditions.”
Scripture, Canon, and Commentary does indeed discuss a general com-
mentatorial assumption, viz., that the canon is self-consistent, that inter-
nal contradictions in it are only apparent (p. 115 ff.). But it says nothing
about high-correlative systems that arise as byproducts. It says nothing
about correlative thought, and indeed, neither this expression nor other
ones such as “correspondences” can be found in the index.
More relevant material can be found in Farmer’s Syncretism in the
West. The following passage deals with the issue that concerns us
(p. 74):
Syncretic methods like Pico’s had systematic effects that were remarkably
similar no matter what traditions were being fused. The historical signifi-
cance of these methods lies here, since they illuminate otherwise mysteri-
ous parallels in the evolution of traditions. These effects were clearer in lit-
erate than in oral traditions, whose fluidity permitted syntheses in flexible
and impermanent ways. Reconciliations of literate traditions, however,
required the use of formal syncretic methods like those planned by Pico for
his Vatican debate. The systematic effects of these methods were cumula-
tive and are best observed evolving in traditions over vast periods of
time….
The most obvious result of the use of these methods was the sheer com-
plexity that they introduced into systematic thought. When religious and
philosophical exegetes could not harmonize the conflicting concepts of
their authorities more directly, the tendency was to carve out niches for all
those concepts somewhere in their systems. The results of this compila-
tional mode of thought were much the same whether room for those con-
cepts was created by use of a standard scholastic distinction, by some vari-
ation of the double-truth, or by the invention of cosmic correlations and
hierarchical distinctions to preserve their full or partial truth.
The last sentence of this passage is particularly interesting. It emphasizes
that room for conflicting concepts could be created “by use of a standard
scholastic distinction, by some variation of the double-truth, or by the
invention of cosmic correlations and hierarchical distinctions”. It does
16 J. BRONKHORST
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not state that each of these ways had to be used in each tradition. One
could easily imagine a culture which, for reasons of its own, avoids one
or more of these methods, for example the invention of cosmic correla-
tions. That is to say, one may sympathize with the model presented by
Farmer c.s. without feeling obliged to look for high-correlative thought
presumably resulting from the processes included in it. India may well
be an example that shows that high-correlative thought cannot be
counted among its necessary consequences, and indeed that high-correl-
ative thought can come about in other ways. This culture has its share of
high-correlative thought, primarily (though not exclusively) in Vedic lit-
erature, but it is not the result of the iterated application of exegetical
methods. It is not my intention to offer an alternative explanation for the
presence of correlative thought in certain literary manifestations of
Indian culture, but FHW’s claim to the effect that it has a neurobiologi-
cal basis, combined with the further claim that certain religious currents
may believe that this kind of thought provides access to hidden levels of
reality
5
, might go at least part of the way.
Let us now turn to the “late-ancient and medieval scholastic systems
subdivided (just as elsewhere in the Old World) into a profusion of war-
ring ‘schools’” (FHW p. 54), which includes no doubt the different
schools of Indian philosophy. Resolving contradictions was no doubt a
prime concern of these philosophical schools. This led them to system-
atize their thought, but not to produce high-correlative systems. Correla-
tive thought is weak or even totally absent in most of them. One reason
may be that these systems are not the result of iterated exegetical
processes based on ever more-inclusive canonical texts. During the clas-
sical period each philosophical school rather has one basic text, and the
differences between the schools are not differences of interpretation, but
differences that are at least in part already enshrined in the fundamental
texts of each of them.
Correspondences as we find them in Vedic literature are absent from
classical Brahmanical philosophy. We do occasionally find traces of the
IS THERE CORRELATIVE THOUGHT IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY? 17
5
I assume that also FHW will agree that not all hidden levels of reality are to be
explained through iterated exegetical processes.
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identification of macrocosm and microcosm. An example is the
Saμkhya philosophy which, still in its classical formulation, appears to
confuse the two levels. Eli Franco (1991: 123 f.) puts it like this: “One
of the reasons why many of us feel uneasy with the Saμkhya philosophy
is that we are never quite sure where we stand and whether the ancient
teachers were talking psychology or cosmology. Typical psychological
and individual terms like cognition, ego, mind, sense organs, and even
hands, feet, tongue, anus and penis, become trans-individual and obtain
cosmological dimensions.” In the present context it is important to
observe that this identification of macrocosm and microcosm is not only
a problem for the modern researcher. The tradition itself, including its
classical commentaries, was concerned with it, and made efforts to
remove it
6
. The philosophy of Bhart®hari contains a similar ambiguity,
but the more recent Utpaladeva who appropriated part of his thought
made sure that it was removed
7
.
Mimaμsa is the school of Vedic hermeneutics which is the only
“school of philosophy” that is interested in the Vedic texts that display
high-correlative thought. Though interested in these Vedic texts,
Mimaμsa is not interested in high-correlative thought. Sentences or pas-
sages expressive of high-correlative thought are barely ever cited in its
works
8
, and the school itself does not utilize it. The other school of
Mimaμsa which is better known by the name Vedanta (or Brahma-
Mimaμsa, later also Uttara-Mimaμsa) concentrates its attention on
some UpaniÒadic sentences
9
. Some of these — such as tat tvam asi “that
you are” — might conceivably be interpreted in terms of correlative
thought
10
, but the Vedantic interpreters do not do so.
Particularly interesting in connection with the theory of Farmer c.s. is
the philosophy of the Jainas. Unlike their Brahmanical and Buddhist
counterparts, who criticized each other’s views virtually without restraint,
the Jaina thinkers made a concerted effort to reconcile the views of their
opponents with their own from an early time onward. The result was a
18 J. BRONKHORST
6
See on all this Bronkhorst, 1999a; 2001: §§5 & 8.
7
Bronkhorst, 2001: §6.
8
Cf. Garge, 1952.
9
See Bronkhorst, 2007a.
10
This would not be the original interpretation of this sentence; see Brereton, 1986.
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philosophical relativism typical of Jainism. The efforts of the Jaina
philosophers — reconciling conflicting remarks in the early scriptural tra-
dition
11
, attempting to find a place for the ‘partial truths’ of other philo-
sophical schools — seem to coincide to a remarkable degree with the
activities which exegetes are supposed to carry out in the model of
Farmer c.s. Here then, if anywhere in the context of classical Indian phi-
losophy, one might expect to see the “byproduct” of the model which is
the creation of high-correlative systems.
One doesn’t. There is no correlative thought in Jaina philosophy.
There are, on the other hand, lots of “modes of consideration” (naya).
The other schools of Indian philosophy do not even have those. Their
thinkers present one vision of reality, which they do not feel obliged to
syncretize with the views of others. It would seem that the classical
Indian tradition of philosophical thought quite simply does not fit in the
model presented by Farmer and his co-authors
12
.
What do we conclude from these observations? The suggestion that cor-
relative thought, or even high-correlative systems of thought, develop
“as byproducts of exegetical processes operating in layered textual tra-
ditions over extensive periods” has a certain a priori plausibility and
exerts a certain a priori attraction. However, intellectual history is not,
or not exclusively, deduced from theoretical a prioris. This theory may
be of help in understanding certain developments in cultures different
from India. In India it does not appear to have much to offer. The high-
correlative systems of thought which we do find in India have not, as far
as we can tell, developed in the manner postulated by the theory. And
the systems of thought (primarily the systems of Indian philosophy)
which should, by dint of this theory, be high-correlative systems of
IS THERE CORRELATIVE THOUGHT IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY? 19
11
See Dundas, 1992: 197 f; 2
nd
ed. p. 229 f., and esp. p. 198 (230): “The catalyst for
the emergence of philosophical relativism was the condensing by Umasvati in the
Tattvarthasutra of the often inchoate and unconnected remarks found in the early scrip-
tural tradition concerning substance and its modifications and the standpoint from which
they should be approached into the definitive expression of a distinctively Jain model of
reality as simultaneously involving the two apparent contradictories of permanence and
change.” See further Bronkhorst, 2003.
12
For a recent overview of the main doctrinal positions of the early Indian philosophical
schools, see Bronkhorst, 2008.
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thought, are not. It seems justified to discard the theory as of little use in
the Indian context, and to conclude that it does not possess the universal
characteristics claimed by its authors.
R
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A
BBREVIATIONS
FHR Steve Farmer, John B. Henderson and Peter Robinson
FHW Steve Farmer, John B. Henderson and Michael Witzel
R
ÉSUMÉ
Quelques articles récents présentent une théorie pour expliquer la présence de la
pensée corrélative dans plusieurs civilisations, ainsi que d’une pensée “haute-
ment corrélative” dans certaines autres. Le présent article, sans critiquer cette
théorie en elle-même, montre qu’elle a peu d’utilité dans le contexte indien.
Mots-clés: Pensée corrélative, philosophie indienne, systèmes de pensée.
IS THERE CORRELATIVE THOUGHT IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY? 21
Journal Asiatique 296.1 (2008): 9-22
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ABSTRACT
Some recent articles present a theory to explain the presence of correlative
thought in a number of cultures, and of high-correlative systems of thought in a
number of them. The present article does not criticize this theory in general, but
shows that it is of little use in the Indian context.
Keywords: Correlative thought, Indian philosophy, high-correlative systems of
thought.
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Article
Full-text available
This paper examines the puruṣa concept in the Caraka Saṃhitā (CS), an early text of Ayurveda, and its relation to Indic thinking about phenomenal worldhood. It argues that, contrary to the usual interpretation, early Ayurveda does not consider the person to be a microcosmic replication of the macrocosmos. Instead, early Ayurveda asserts that personhood is worldhood, and thus the person is non-different from the phenomenal totality (spatial and temporal) of his existence. This is confirmed by the CS’s several definitions of puruṣa, which are alternately posed in terms familiar to Vaiśeṣika, early (pre-“classical”) Sāṃkhya, early Buddhism, and Upaniṣadic monism. It is likewise confirmed by the Ayurvedic logic of sāmānya (translated as “identity”), which governs the meaning of the list of person-to-world correspondences in CS 4.5 and its often misinterpreted claim, puruṣo’yam lokasaṃmitaḥ. Finally it is confirmed in the program of Ayurvedic therapeutics, which aims at establishing various kinds of “appropriateness” for the sake of effecting samayoga—the “harmonious joining” of person and world.
Article
Full-text available
Tat tvam asi' in context
  • Joel Brereton
Brereton, Joel (1986): "'Tat tvam asi' in context." Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft 136, 98-109.
Mimaμsa and Vedanta: Interaction and Continuity
  • Johannes Bronkhorst
Bronkhorst, Johannes (2007a): "Vedanta as Mimaμsa." Mimaμsa and Vedanta: Interaction and Continuity. Ed. Johannes Bronkhorst. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. (Papers of the 12th World Sanskrit Conference, 10.3.) Pp. 1-91.