Journal of Indian Philosophy

, Volume 39, Issue 4–5, pp 571–587

How to Refer to a Thing by a Word: Another Difference Between Dignāga’s and Kumārila’s Theories of Denotation

Article

Abstract

In studies of Indian theories of meaning it has been standard procedure to examine their relevance to the ontological issues between Brahmin realism about universals and Buddhist nominalism (or conceptualism). It is true that Kumārila makes efforts to secure the real existence of a generic property (jāti) denoted by a word by criticizing Dignāga, who declares that the real world consists of absolutely unique individuals (svalakṣaṇa). The present paper, however, concentrates on the linguistic approaches Dignāga and Kumārila adopt to deny or to prove the existence of universals. It turns out that in spite of adopting contrasting approaches they equally distinguish between the semantic denotation of a word and its pragmatic reference to a thing in the physical world. From a purely semantic viewpoint, Dignāga considers the exclusion (apoha) of others by a word as the result of a conceptual accumulation of the sense-components accepted in the totality of worldly discourse. Among the three characteristics Dignāga held must be met by universals, Kumārila attaches special importance to their entire inherence in each individual (pratyekaparisamāpti / pratyekasamavāya). This is because he pragmatically pays attention to the use of a word in the discourse given in a particular context (prakaraṇa) by analyzing a sentence into a topic and a comment.

Keywords

Dignāga apoha Sense-component Kumārila pratyekasamavāya Topic and Comment Context 

Abbreviations

TV

Tantravārttika, in: Mīmāṃsādarśanam, 6 parts, ed. Subbāśāstrī, Ānandāśrama Sanskrit Series 97, 1st ed., Poona 1929–53

TVʹ

Tantravārttika, in: Mīmāṃsādarśanam, 2nd ed., 7 pts, Ānandāśrama Sanskrit Series 97, Poona 1971–1981

TSP

Tattvasaṅgrahapañjikā, in: Tattvasaṃgraha, vol. 1, ed. D. Sastri, Bauddha Bharati Series 1, Varanasi 1968

NBh

Nyāyabhāṣya, ed. A. Thakur, in: Nyāyacaturgranthikā, New Delhi 1997

NV

Nyāyavārttika, ed. A. Thakur, in: Nyāyacaturgranthikā, New Delhi 1997

NS

Nyāyasūtra, see NBh

NSu

Nyāyasudhā, ed. Mukunda Sastri, Chowkhamba Sanskrit Series 45 & 56, Benares 1901–1902

PDhS

Padārthadharmasaṃgraha, in: J. Bronkhorst and Y. Ramseier, Word Index to the Praśastapādabhāṣya, Delhi, Motilal Banarsidass Publishers, 1994

PV

Pramāṇavārttika, the first chapter, in: Pramāṇavārttikasvavṛtti, ed. R. Gnoli, Serie Orientale Roma 23, Rome 1960

PS

Pramāṇasamuccaya, the fifth chapter, tr. Kanakavarman, in: Hattori 1982

PST

Viśālāmalavatī Ṭīkā on PSV, tr. Blo gros brtan pa, in: Hattori 1982

PSV

Pramāṇasamuccayavṛtti, the fifth chapter, tr. Kanakavarman, in: Hattori 1982

K

Tibetan translation of the PS & PSV by Kanakavarman, in: Hattori 1982

V

Tibetan translation of the PS & PSV by Vasudharakṣita, in: Hattori 1982

MBh

Mahābhāṣya, 3 vols., ed. F. Kielhorn, 3d ed., Poona, Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, 1972 (1st ed., 1880)

MmS

Mīmāṃsāsūtra, in: Mīmāṃsādarśanam, see TV

Vt

Kātyāyana’s vārttika on Aṣṭādhyāyī 1.2.64

VS

Vaiśeṣikasūtra, ed. Jambuvijaya with the commentry of Candrānanda, Gaekwad’s Oriental Series 136, Baroda 1961

ŚBh & ŚBhʹ

Śābarabhāṣya, in: Mīmāṃsādarśanam, see TV & TVʹ

ŚBh(F)

Śābarabhāṣya ad MmS 1.1.1-5, in: Frauwallner, E., Materialien zur ältesten Erkenntnislehre der Karmamīmāṃsā, Wien, Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1968

ŚV

Ślokavārttika, ed. D. Sastri, Prāchyabhārati Series 10, Varanasi 1978

ŚVŚ

Ślokavārttikaṭīkā (Śarkarikā), ed. C. Kunhan Raja, Madras University Sanskrit Series 17, Madras 1946

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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Indology and History of Indian Buddhism, Faculty of Arts and LettersTohoku UniversitySendaiJapan

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