(An introduction to Indian philosophy)

Authors: Dr. M. Prabhakar Joshy

N3 Peaceland, Pinto Lane, Mangalore- 575004

Prof. M A Hegde, Mandlikoppa, Siddapura Tq, Uttara Kannada Dist – 581340

Published by:  Akshara Prakshana, Heggodu (Sagara), Karnataka-577417

Number of pages: 343; Price: Rs 200

If someone is looking for a book in Kannada that gives an overall but clear idea of Indian philosophy, the search, in my opinion,need not go beyond ‘Bharatiya Tatvashastra Pravesha’-a book authored by Dr M. Prabhakar Joshy and Prof. M A Hegde. It is an excellent book that provides concise but precise idea of the different schools of Indian philosophy. Reading this book has been an exhilarating experience for me.

Books on Indian philosophy are mostly about any one scripture or one school of philosophy. Such booksprovideoverly detailed accountsof the subjects, and so, by the time a reader plods through the whole book, chances are that the heart of the matter is lost. It is like ‘missing the woods for the trees.’

Major virtues of this book are clarity of thought, precise use of words, crisp narration, succinct summary of each school of philosophy without missing its essentials, important quotes or shlokas from the original and enlivening observations of the authors at appropriated places.

While first part of the book is about different schools of Indian philosophy, second part is unique as it deals with some topics and concepts common to all the schools of Indian philosophy. It provides interesting account of how different schools of Indian philosophy viewand treat certain common philosophical concepts quite differently. In a way, Part 2 is a comparative study of the different schools of Indian philosophy, though such comparisons are touched upon in Part 1 too while dealing with individual schools of philosophy.

The book brings Indian philosophy up close to readers andmakes it veryinteresting too.For a Kannada knowing reader, it is advantageous to readabout Indian philosophy in Kannada rather than in English, because,however good the translation or interpretations might be, the latter cannot connect with the original Sanskrit like a book in Kannada,which is so much closer to Sanskrit. Further, the intellectual and emotional appeal of books on Indian philosophy in Kannada is far stronger than of those in English. Bibliography and index provided at the end of the book are indeed very useful. 

I am yet to find anything like this book in English on Indian philosophy. I have gained immensely by reading this brilliant introduction to Indian philosophy, and hence the urge to share my opinion of this work with other Kannada readers. This book will remain with me,and within my easy reach, for quick reference in future.

A ‘must’ book for Kannada readers whose interest in Indian philosophical thoughts is more than passing and who consider them to be the most precious part of our heritage.

  • Venkatraja U Rao

        401, Ashiana, 21 St. Paul Road, Bandra West Mumbai- 400050, Email: [email protected]

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