Titlin L.I. The Polemics of UAntarak ita and Kamalaula with the MmA sakas on the Existence and Properties of Atman in “Tattvasa graha-PanjikA” (Translation of an Excerpt)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/lp.jvolsu.2018.1.6

Lev  I. Titlin

Candidate  of  Sciences  (Philosophy),  Researcher,  Institute  of  Philosophy,

Russian Academy of Sciences,

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Goncharnaya St., 12, bld. 1, 109240 Moscow, Russian Federation


Abstract. Santarak ita is a Buddhist philosopher of the 8th century, one of the most important Buddhist thinkers of India and Tibet, a representative of the Mahayana Yogacara-svatantrika-madhyamaka school. The most famous work of Santarak ita is “Tattvasa graha” (“Collection of Essential [Problems]”, or “Compendium of Categories”) is a large-scale polemical work, in twenty-six chapters of which the author criticizes twenty-six basic concepts of the main philosophical schools of India (Sakhya, Nyaya, Vaise ika, Mimasa, Lokayata, Yoga, Vedanta, and also Jainism and Buddhism of other schools). In the section “The Polemics with the Mima sakas” of the chapter “Atmaparik a” (lit. “Study of Atman”) of “Tattvasa graha” of Santarak ita with the commentary “Panjika ” of Kamalasila philosophical polemics between Buddhism and Mimasa, school of antient Indian philosophy on the question of the existence and properties of the self is taking place. The purpose of the article is introduction to scientific and shcolar circulation the first translation from Sanskrit into Russian of the section “The Polemics with the Mima sakas” of the chapter “Atmaparik a” (lit. “Study of Atman”) of “Tattvasa graha” of Santarak ita with the commentary “Panjika” of Kamalasila. Materials and Methods: in the article the comparative historical method, the method of comparative analysis, a widespread methodology of philosophical translation from Sanskrit into Russian is used. The translation was made from the critical edition of S.D. Sastri [18]. The only translation of the text into English by G. Jha was also used [11] alongside with the only translation of the section into French from the Sanskrit by I. Ratie [16]. In the article the method of historical and philosophical reconstruction was applied. Results: in the course of the study the author has shown that according to the Mima sakas, atman has a form of consciousness (caitanya) and exclusive and inclusive nature. Exclusive – as the seat of satisfaction and dissatisfaction, etc., which are mutually exclusive states, inclusive – as a sequence of consciousness, essentiality, good qualities, etc. Santarakita criticizes the position of the Mima sakas, revealing contradictions in their internal philosophical logic. Discussion and Conclusions: it is concluded that Santarak ita’ss main argument in the dispute with the Mima       sakas is that, in his opinion, there is a contradiction between the concept of the eternal and unchanging atman and its properties as a cognizing and acting subject. Indeed, the Buddhists here proceed from experience that says that all our knowledge is transitent and changeable, and we do not find within ourselves any eternal and unchangeable self. Even if it was, it could not have anything to do with the particular changeable facts of the psyche and the moments of consciousness. Thus, Santarak ita concludes, the concept of unchanging atman as a reality is only an illusion of the psyche, which is not confirmed by any real experience and enters into a logical contradiction with the facts.

Key words: Santarakita, Kamalasila, “Tattvasa graha”, atman, subject, self, soul.

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