Grammar. Philosophy and Epistemology

David Rustin Mellins drm8 at COLUMBIA.EDU
Fri Oct 13 16:58:14 UTC 2006

Perhaps .Rg Veda 10.71.4 is suitable to consider in the current

uta tva.h pa'syan na vaacam uta tva.h 's.r.nvan na
's.r.noti evam/ uto tvasmai tanva.m vi sasre jaayeva patyau'satii

While the the limited worldly seing "pas'yan" is expressed through
the base "pa'sya" and the more profound spiritual insight is
expressed through the root "d.r's," this might simply be a result
of the specific grammatical forms: present particible and perfect.

Also, one might consider Somaananda's critique (in the second
chapter of the 'Sivad.r.s.ti) of Bhart.rhari's use of term
Pa'syantii to represent the ontological purity of speech on account
of association with dualistic vision.

                         David Mellins, Ph.D.
                         Rutgers University

Quoting Matthew Kapstein <mkapstei at UCHICAGO.EDU>:

> But what about terms like vipazyanaa, "insight" (in Buddhist
> usage)
> or pazantii as the transcendent ground of linguistic
> possibilities
> in Bhart.rhari?
> To attempt to draw a strict semantic dichotomy between d.rz and
> paz seems altogether unwarranted.
> More useful, to clarify to some extent what is at stake here,
> would be to attend to the issue of ocularity, particularly as
> represented in the Indo-European languages and in the
> philosophical
> traditions elaborated in them. There has been a great deal of
> philosophical ink spilled over the Western iterations of the
> question, beginning with Richard Rorty and continuing into
> more recent works such as David Levin, The Philosopher's Gaze.
> None of this, of course, will help will the Sanskrit, but it
> may help in getting more clear conceptually about just what
> is at stake in the tie between "seeing" and "knowing."
> Matthew Kapstein
> Chicago and Paris

More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list