Revisiting Indian Philosophy through a Cārvāka Perspective

Pradeep P. Gokhale

in Lokāyata/Cārvāka

Published in print October 2015 | ISBN: 9780199460632
Published online January 2016 | e-ISBN: 9780199085507 | DOI:
Revisiting Indian Philosophy through a Cārvāka Perspective

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This chapter makes a meta-philosophical claim that Lokāyata, considered as a strong this-worldly rational approach including diverse philosophical trends, can influence one’s approach to Indian philosophy as a whole. In this light, it takes note of some of the recent Indian philosophers and thinkers who have tried to reassess and reconstruct Indian philosophy by keeping a Lokāyatic or Lokāyata-like approach at the centre. Hence the chapter refers to the following recent thinkers/philosophers: (a) the analytical philosopher Rajendra Prasad, who secularized the theory of the four puruṣārthas, (b) Debiprasad Chattopadhyaya, who turned the traditional hierarchical order among the Indian philosophical schools upside down, (c) S. S. Barlingay, who reinterpreted Advaita–Vedānta, Sāṅkhya, Jainism, and so on, in materialistic terms, and (d) B. R. Ambedkar, who reconstructed Buddhism and synthesized it with Lokāyata. The chapter concludes the work by underlining the need for a Lokāyatic turn in Indian philosophy.

Keywords: meta-philosophy; Rajendra Prasad; Debiprasad Chattopadhyaya; S. S. Barlingay; B. R. Ambedkar; puruṣārtha; karma; rebirth

Chapter.  6534 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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