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Bhaṭṭa Jayanta on Epistemic Complexity

Abstract

This essay seeks to characterize one of the leading ideas in Bhaṭṭa Jayanta's Nyāyamañjarī, the fundamental role that the idea of complexity plays in its theory of knowledge. The appeal to the causally complex nature of any event of valid awareness is framed as a repudiation of the lean ontology and epistemology of the Buddhist theorists working in the tradition of Dharmakīrti; for Jayanta, this theoretical minimalism led inevitably to the inadmissible claim of the irreality of the world outside of consciousness. In countering this Buddhist position, Jayanta adopts some of his opponents’ characteristic terminology, most notably in his use of sāmagrī, “causal complex” itself. He resituates this borrowed vocabulary within a strong appeal to the theory of the kārakas or the semantic roles detailed by grammarians since the time of Pāṇini. Possibly borrowing this sāmagrī-kāraka amalgam from the Buddhist grammarian-epistemologist Jinendrabuddhi, Jayanta uses it as a point of departure for a sustained attack on the views of Dharmottara, who Jayanta understood as offering the most advanced and most problematic Buddhist philosophical position available in his time and place.

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Notes

  1. For the Potter bibliography, see https://faculty.washington.edu/kpotter/xtxt2.htm; among the recent works not listed there, mention can be made of David (2016) (cf. Ollett 2016), Freschi and Kataoka (2014), Graheli (2015), Jha (2008), Kataoka (2006), Sanderson (2015), Slaje (2012), Watson (2020 and 2022), and Watson and Kataoka (2010, 2017). The online bibliography excludes any reference to Jayanta’s play Āgamaḍambara, beginning with its first edition by Raghavan and Thakur in 1964, extending through Wezler (1976) and continuing through the renewed interest in the text following Desző’s reedition and translation (2004, 2005). Perhaps the reason for this omission is one of genre, although the bibliography includes references to, inter alia, Kṛṣṇamiśra’s Prabodhacandrodaya.

  2. The major exceptions to this are the overview in Shah (1992, pp. 17–54) and several publications by Jha (1995, pp. 25–84, 1996, 2008).

  3. NM1: 4 suciraprarūḍhavṛddhavyavahārasiddhānvayavyatirekādhigatasādhanabhāve bhojanādau […] tasmād asmadādeḥ śāstram evādhigantavyam. See Pollock (1989a, pp. 21–23) for an earlier survey of this and the following discussion, and more generally Pollock (1985) for a broad survey and theorization of śāstric knowledge. Throughout this discussion, I have benefitted from Kataoka’s detailed account of this passage (2006, pp. 15–26).

  4. NM1: 8, citing Yājñavalkyasmṛti 1.3. Cf. Pollock (1989b, pp. 21–23): as Pollock notes, vidyāsthāna as a term of art is already found in Yāska’s ancient Nirukta (1.15).

  5. NM1: 9, citing Arthaśāstra 1.2.1; on this passage more generally, see McClish (2019, pp. 180–184). As Kataoka notes (2006, p. 7), though Jayanta is silent about this, Vātsyāyana’s Nyāyabhāṣya had earlier promoted the fourfold Arthaśāstra scheme.

  6. On the ṣaṭtarkī, see the exhaustive account in Gerschheimer (2007); this passage is discussed pp. 246–248.

  7. NM1: 8–9; “poor bastards…”: cārvākās tu varākāḥ pratikṣeptavyā eva; “For all that…” bauddhās tu yady api anumānamārgāvagāhananaipuṇoddhurāṃ kandharām udvahanti tathāpi vedaviruddhatvāt tattarkasya kathaṃ vedādividyāsthānamadhye pāṭhaḥ. anumānakauśalam api kīdṛśaṃ śākyānām iti pade pade darśayiṣyāmaḥ. “Though the set of six…” evam asyāṃ janatāsu prasiddhāyām api ṣaṭtarkyām idam eva tarkanyāyavistaraśabdābhyāṃ śāstram uktam.

  8. NM1: 10: tatra hy arthavicāravat prāmāṇyavicāro 'pi kṛta eva satyam sa tv ānuṣaṅgikaḥ. tatra mukhyas tv arthavicāra eva. pṛthakprasthānā hīmā vidyāḥ. sā ca vākyārthavidyā na pramāṇavidyeti. na ca mīmāṃsakāḥ samyagvedaprāmāṇyarakṣaṇakṣamāṃ saraṇim avalokayituṃ kuśalāḥ. kutarkakaṇṭakanikaraniruddhasañcāramārgābhāsaparibhrāntāḥ khalu te iti vakṣyāmaḥ.

  9. See the discussion in Preisendanz (2000, esp. 221–230).

  10. See, for instance, Eltschinger et al. (2012).

  11. The term is borrowed, again silently, from Vātsyāyana’s Nyāyabhāṣya ad Nyāyasūtra 1.1.1 (cf. n. 5, above): imās tu catasro vidyāḥ pṛthakprasthānāḥ prāṇabhṛtām anugrahāyopadiśyante, …tasyāḥ [= nyāyavidyāyāḥ] pṛthakprasthānāḥ saṃśayādayaḥ padārthāḥ, and tasmāt [scil. nyāyavidyā] saṃśayādibhiḥ padārthaiḥ pṛthak prasthāpyate (Nyāyadarśanam, pp. 34–35). Refer once again to the discussions of Kataoka (2006, pp. 21–27) and Preisendanz (2000, pp. 224–226).

  12. Jayanta’s novelty here is noted by Shah (1992, p. 20).

  13. The dictum cited by the objector (NM1: 32: pramātā pramāṇam prameyaṃ pramitir ti catasṛsu vidhāsu tattvaṃ parisamāpyate, “all of reality is comprised within the four categories of cognizer, pramāṇa, the cognizable, and cognition”) is a truncated paraphrase of a passage in the Nyāyabhāṣya’s opening avataraṇikā: arthavati ca pramāṇe pramātā prameyaṃ pramitir ity arthavanti bhavanti. kasmāt. anyatamāpāye 'rthasyānupapatteḥ. tatra yasyepsājihāsāprayuktasya pravṛttiḥ sa pramātā, sa yenārthaṃ pramiṇoti tat pramāṇam, yo 'rthaḥ pramīyate tat prameyam, yad arthavijñānaṃ sā pramitiḥ, catasṛṣu caivaṃvidhāsv arthatattvaṃ parisamāpyate (“When a pramāṇa possesses an object, so too do the cognizer, cognizable, and cognition possess a such an object. Why is this? Because the intentional object fails to come about in the absence of any one of these. Of these, the one who acts as impelled by a desire to obtain or to avoid something is the cognizer; that whereby he measures some intentional object is the pramāṇa; the object that is so measured is the cognizable, and the awareness of that object is cognition. And all of reality is comprised by these four.”). Compare this minimal citation to Jayanta’s silent adoption of the Nyāyabhāṣya’s terms regarding the vidyāsthānas (cited in footnotes 5 and 11, above).

  14. NM1: 31: atredaṃ tāvad vicāryate kiṃ pramāṇaṃ nāma kim asya svarūpam kiṃ vā lakṣaṇam iti tataḥ sūtraṃ yojayiṣyate. tad ucyate: avyabhicāriṇīm asandigdhām arthopalabdhiṃ vidadhatī bodhābodhasvabhāvā sāmagrī pramāṇam. bodhābodhasvabhāvā sāmagrī hi tasya svarūpam. avyabhicārādi-viśeṣaṇārthopalabdhisādhanatvaṃ lakṣaṇam.

  15. NM1: 31–32: nanu ca pramīyate yena tat pramāṇam iti karaṇasādhano 'yaṃ pramāṇaśabdaḥ. karaṇaṃ ca sādhakatamam. tamabarthaś cātiśayaḥ. sa cāpekṣikaḥ. sādhakāntarasaṃbhave hi tadapekṣayā 'tiśayayogāt kiñcit sādhakatamam ucyate. sāmagryāś caikatvāt tadatiriktasādhakāntarānupalambhāt kimapekṣam asyātiśayaṃ brūmaḥ. api ca kasmin viṣaye sāmagryāḥ pramāṇatvam. pramīyamāṇo hi karmabhūto viṣayaḥ sāmagryantarbhūtatvāt sāmagry eveti karaṇatām eva yāyāt. nirālambanāś cedānīṃ sarvapramitayo bhaveyur ālambanakārakasya cakṣurādivat pramāṇāntaḥpātitvāt.

  16. The relevant sūtras in the Aṣṭādhyāyī are 3.3.117 (karaṇādhikaraṇayoś ca, establishing that the derivational suffix lyuṭ forms pramāṇa as a neuter noun expressing an instrument), 1.4.42 (sādhakatamaṃ karaṇam, defining the role of the instrument), and 5.3.55 (atiśāyane tamabiṣṭhanau, assigning superlative value to the suffix tamap). Patañjali’s extended discussion of 1.4.42 in his Mahābhāṣya supplied Jayanta’s major point of departure here (I am grateful to one of the journal’s reviewers for emphasizing this). Within a very large literature, classic accounts of kāraka theory in English include Cardona (1974) and Sharma (1987, pp. 141–164). Several contributions by Madhav Deshpande offer elaborations on Cardona’s presentation: Deshpande (1990) critiques certain parts of Cardona’s argument while extending it in others; Deshpande (1991) frames the theory of kāraka within the Lakoffian notion of a grammatical ‘prototype’ (I return to this argument in the Conclusions: see below). Of particular use in this context is Jha (2008), a brief but lucid account of Jayanta’s argument, with citations from the grammatical literature.

  17. I return to the question of the history of this ‘ontologized’ understanding of the kāraka theory in the Conclusions.

  18. This is attested in the metatheatrical opening of Jayanta’s play the Āgamaḍambara, where its Director states adya cātrabhavataḥ śaiśava eva vyākaraṇavivaraṇakaraṇād ‘vṛttikāra’ iti prathitāparanāmno bhaṭṭajayantasya śiṣyapariṣadāham ājñaptaḥ, “Yet now comes the honorable Bhaṭṭa Jayanta, also well known as the Writer of the Commentary because he wrote an exegetical work on grammar when he was just a child, whose circle of pupils has ordered me” (1.13, trans. Dezső, modified, cf. 1.6). This is also attested in the brief family history given in the opening of his son Abhinanda’s Kādambarīkathāsāra 1.10-11: putraṃ kṛtajanānandaṃ sa jayantam ajījanat | āsīt kavitvavaktṛtvaphalā yasya sarasvatī || vṛttikāra iti vyaktaṃ dvitīyaṃ nāma bibhrataḥ | vedavedāṅgaviduṣaḥ sarvaśāstrārthavādinaḥ ||, “[Candra] had a son, Jayanta, a joy to good people, whose speech bore fruit as both a poet and a debater. It was well known that he had ‘Writer of the Commentary’ as his second name; he was learned in the Veda and its sciences and an eloquent proponent of the views of every system.”

  19. NM1, p. 32 …sāmagryāḥ pramāṇatvaṃ yuktam, tadvyatirekeṇa kārakāntare kvacid api tamabarthasaṃsparśānupapatteḥ.

  20. See footnote 49, below.

  21. NM1: 33: so 'pi [scil. atiśayaḥ] kasyāṃcid avasthāyāṃ karaṇasyeva karmaṇo 'pi śakyate vaktuṃ. yathā: aviralajaladharadhārāprabandhabaddhāndhakāranivahe bahulaniśīthe sahasaiva sphuratā vidyullatālokena kāminījñānam ādadhānena tajjanmani sātiśayatvam avāpyate. evam itarakārakakadambasannidhāne saty api sīmantinīm antareṇa taddarśanaṃ na saṃpadyate āgatamātrāyām eva tasyāṃ bhavatīti tad api karmakārakam atiśayayogitvāt karaṇaṃ syāt.

  22. See Cox (1995, p. 77n25) for these references.

  23. Pramāṇavārttika 1.7-1.10 with Dharmakīrti’s svavṛtti (ed. Gnoli, pp. 6–8). The foundational intellectual-historical scholarship on this question is that of Ernst Steinkellner: see Steinkellner 1971, pp. 184–188, 1991, 1999, pp. 349–353. The last of these is important for its clearsighted account of the wider theoretical stakes of this issue: the ability to infer the effect from the operation of a complete and unimpeded causal complex is, in Steinkellner’s reconstruction, essential for the Buddhist theory of enlightenment.

  24. NM1: 38–40; see Arnold (2012, pp. 165–174) for a fine reconstruction of Diṅnāga’s foundational rejection of the distinction between pramāṇa and pramāṇaphala.

  25. This passage is translated and closely annotated in Jha (1996), which only came to my attention late in the writing of this article.

  26. NM1:40 anye tu tulyasāmagryadhīnayoḥ jñānārthayoḥ grāhyagrāhakabhāvaṃ vadantaḥ bodhaṃ pramāṇam abhyupāgaman. kṣaṇabhaṅgiṣu padārtheṣu sahakāryupādānakāraṇāpekṣakṣaṇāntarasantatijananena ca lokayātrām udvahatsu jñānajanmani jñānam upādānakāraṇam arthaḥ sahakārikāraṇam arthajanmani ca arthaḥ upādānakāraṇaṃ jñānaṃ ca sahakārikāraṇam iti jñānaṃ ca jñānārthajanyam arthaś ca arthajñānajanyo bhavatīty evam ekasāmagryadhīnatayā tam artham avyabhicarato jñānasya tatra prāmāṇyam iti.

  27. NMGBh1: 24: ajanako ’py arthaḥ sahabhāvijñānena gṛhyata iti nirākārajñānavādināṃ vaibhāṣikānāṃ darśanam, “The view that even though an object does not produce an awareness, it is grasped by a co-occurent cognition belongs to the Vaibhāṣikas, who hold that awareness lacks a representational framework.” See Ratié (2011, pp. 350–352 and compare her translation of this passage, p. 350n93); the preponderance of the evidence for her convincing identification is drawn from Kamalaśīla’s presentation of Śubhagupta’s views in the Tattvasaṃgrahapañjikā (p. 352n.97); on Śubhagupta see now Saccone (2018, 2019).

  28. For the suggestion of the ‘sliding scale’ at work between epistemic and ontological claims, see Dunne (2004) and the responses to this in Arnold (2008), Kellner (2005) and Ratié (2014).

  29. NM1: 40 tad idam anupapannam aphalajanakasya pramāṇatvānupapatter ity uktatvāt.

  30. Jayanta cites the first half of Pramāṇavārttika 3.308: savyāpāram ivābhāti vyāpāreṇa svakarmaṇi, “[an awareness] seems to possess an operation, through the operation on its object.” Cakradhara, who usefully expands on this telegraphic half-verse, begins by claiming this as a ‘general Buddhist position” (NMGBh1: 25: sāmānyena bauddhadarśanāśrayaṇena) before rightly noting that Dharmakīrti’s commitment to representationalism (the sākāravāda) creates doxographical problems, in that the Vaibhāṣika opponent would not share this commitment. Mutatis mutandis, the same would hold true for Śubhagupta (see f.n. 27, above). However, in a recognition of what I call the ‘slippery-slope’ nature of Jayanta’s argument here, Cakradhara writes, “It would be fair to ask whether this criticism makes sense in the case of the Vaibhāṣika position; however, they also accept that an awareness is valid vis-à-vis its own particular object…Or better still, for all that they do not favor this position, the Vaibhāṣikas are forced to adopt it, as they would otherwise end up with the Yogācāra theory that awareness lacks any sort of real object” (ibid: 26: evaṃ ca vaibhāṣikamate idaṃ dūṣaṇaṃ kathaṃ saṃgacchate—satyam. kiṃ tu svasmin viṣaye jñānasya prāmāṇyaṃ tair apīṣyate […] atha vā vaibhāṣikair aniṣyamāṇam api balād etad aṅgīkāryam, anyathā nirviṣayatve jñanasya yogācāradarśanāpattiprasaṅgāt).

  31. As Ratié emphasizes (2011, p. 350), this ‘Vaibhāṣika’ position was originally formulated to overcome precisely this difficulty.

  32. Jayanta does not embark on a full-scale refutation of this position in this early going; he instead directs the reader to his critique later in the text (NM1: 41: ye ’pi…jñānakarmaniyamam avagacchantaḥ…te ’pi vijñānādvaitasisādhayiṣayaivam abhidadhānāḥ tannirāsaprasaṅga eva nirasyiṣyante). This refers to NM2: 487–505, reedited by Kataoka (2003) and analyzed in Watson and Kataoka (2010). At this point in his presentation, Jayanta summarizes his position with a maxim: na hy ekam eva sākāraṃ jñānaṃ grāhyaṃ grāhakaṃ ca bhavitum arhatīti vakṣyate: “as I’ll say later: a single awareness that contains a representation cannot be at once a grasper and a thing-grasped.”

  33. Jayanta includes a lengthy excursus on the Mīmāṃsaka use of kāraka theory as a means to nullify the Buddhist collapse of the pramāṇa and its result (NM1: 42–59), and their argument for the production of a real, imperceptible result of a successful cognition, viz. the quality of “being perceived” or “being known” (dṛṣṭatā, jñātatā) that must be inferred in the grammatical patient of a verb of perceiving or knowing. For reasons of space, I omit discussion of this passage here.

  34. This date follows Steinkellner et al. (2005, p. xlii).

  35. Nyāsa (vol. 1, p. 195) apud Kāśikā ad 1.4.41 (kriyāsiddhau yat prakṛṣṭopakārakaṃ vivakṣitaṃ tat sādhakatamaṃ kārakaṃ karaṇasaṃjñaṃ bhavati): nanu ca sāmagryadhīnā hi kriyāsiddhir ekasyāpy abhāvena na bhavati. tat kasyātra prakarṣo yatparigrahāya sādhakatamaśabdasya grahaṇam iti yaś codayet taṃ praty āha kriyāsiddhāv ityādi. This passage is cited in Jha (2008), along with other pre-Jayanta grammatical discussions of 1.4.41; however, Jha does not highlight the particularity of the Nyāsa’s argument here, which is unique among his citations in its introduction of sāmagrī.

  36. Steinkellner et al. (2005, p. xlii). Here I follow the lead of Hayes (1983) and Funayama (1999)

  37. I nevertheless share the subjective impression first put forth by Hayes (1983, pp. 710, 717; pace Steinkellner et al. 2005, p. xlii) that the depth of investment in technical questions of grammar seen in Diṅnāga’s commentator supplies suggestive, albeit not decisive, evidence of their identity.

  38. Rājataraṅgiṇī 4.498: sa svapne paścimāśāyāṃ lakṣayann udayaṃ raveḥ | deśe dharmottarācāryaṃ praviṣṭaṃ sādhv amanyata || “[King Jayāpīḍa] saw the sun rise in the west in a dream, and he knew well that the teacher Dharmottara had entered the country.” See the translation and discussion by Bronner (2013, pp. 167–169, correcting and updating Stein; see also Bronner (2016, pp. 115–117). It has, I believe, not been remarked that Kalhaṇa’s account seems to imply that Dharmottara was from the west of Kashmir.

  39. See Kataoka (2017a; 2017b), Watson and Kataoka (2017), and more generally passim in MacAllister (2017).

  40. To reproduce Krasser’s conclusions (1997, p. 131): “Aufgrund der Inhaltsparallelen ist ersichtlich, daß er wenigstens folgende Texte verwendet haben muß: Nyāyabinduṭīkā, Apohaprakaraṇa, Laghuprāmāṇyaparīkṣā. Er gibt die Inhalte getreu wieder, zitiert aber nicht wörtlich, sondern stellt auch die gegnerische Lehre mit eigener Hand zusammen.” Krasser bases his work on his own edition and translation of the Laghupramāṇyaparīkṣā (1991); refer also to his English summary of that text’s major arguments (Krasser 1995).

  41. NM1: 61–62: avisaṃvādakatvaṃ ca prāpakatvam ucyate. jñānasya prāpakatvaṃ sukhaduḥkhasādhanasamarthapadārthaprāptiparihārahetubhūtāyāḥ pravṛtter nimittapradarśakatvam eva jñānapradarśite hi viṣaye pravṛttau satyāṃ prāptir bhavatīti prāptiṃ prati pramāṇasya pradarśakatvam eva vyāpāraḥ. pradarśayatā hi tena so 'rthaḥ prāpito bhavati. Jayanta’s formulation here closely parallels the opening remarks to Dharmottara’s most significant work, the Nyāyabinduṭīkā: cf. Dharmottara’s formulation (ed. Malavania, pp. 17–19) tathā hi: na jñānaṃ janayad arthaṃ prāpayati, api tv arthe puruṣam pravartayat prāpayaty artham. pravartakatvam api pravṛttiviṣayapradarśakatvam eva [] ata eva cārthādhigatir eva pramāṇaphalam. adhigate cārthe pravartitaḥ puruṣaḥ prāpitaś cārthaḥ, “To explain: An awareness does not cause an object to be obtained while bringing it into being; rather, it impels a person toward some object and thereby causes [the person] to obtain [that] object. Furthermore, the fact that [an awareness] acts as an impeller simply amounts to its disclosure of some domain of [possible] activity…for this reason, the apprehension of some object is the result of a pramāṇa: when the object has been apprehended, the person is impelled, and the object is made to be acquired.” Jayanta follows this initial presentation with a more cryptic remark: “For instance, it is the act of kings giving an order that is truly the killer of someone who is condemned to be killed. It is for this reason that it has been taught that ‘validity is the power to produce attainment’” (NM1: 62 yathā hantavyaṃ prati rājñām ājñādānam eva hantṛtvam. tad uktaṃ prāpaṇaśaktiḥ prāmāṇyam iti). Compare Krasser’s translation (1997, p. 114). Krasser’s exegetical remarks are especially useful here: he shows that this seemingly eccentric example is clearly based on a passage in the Laghuprāmāṇyaparīkṣā (1997, p. 123): It is only when a convicted man is warranted by the authority of a king to be put to death that one can legitimately act as the one who kills him: similarly, a cognition that sets in motion a chain of actions resulting in the obtaining of something can be said to “cause it to be obtained.” Krasser goes on to note that while the evident quotation prāpaṇaśaktiḥ prāmāṇyam is not directly traceable in the works of Dharmottara, its contents parallel a passage in the Laghuprāmāṇyaparīkṣā, and this exact wording occurs in Abhayadevasūri’s Tattvabodhavidhāyinī, in a passage that explicitly names Dharmottara (1997, pp. 123–124).

  42. McCrea and Patil (2006, pp. 326–331, 2011, pp. 16–20). I accept these authors’ conclusions that this marks a genuine interpretative break within the tradition of Buddhist epistemology.

  43. NM 1: 62: tac ca prāpakatvaṃ pratyakṣānumānayor ubhayor apy astīti pramāṇasāmānyalakṣaṇam. tatra pratyakṣasya vastusvalakṣaṇaviṣayatvāt tasya ca kṣaṇikatvena prāptyasambhave 'pi tatsantānaprāpteḥ santānādhyavasāyajananam eva prāpakatvam. anumānasya tv āropitārthaviṣayatve 'pi mūlabhūtavastulakṣaṇapāramparyaprabhavatvāt maṇiprabhāmaṇibuddhivat tatprāptyā prāpakatvam. Compare Krasser’s translation (1997, p. 114); on the Buddhist commonplace of the glimmer of a gem through an aperture leading someone to ultimately acquire the gem, here once again given only telegraphically, see e.g., Pramāṇavārttika 2.5ab, Pramāṇaviniścaya 3.57, and, most saliently, Nyāyabinduṭīkā pp. 25–26. On āropita- for Dharmottara (and following him, Jayanta) in the sense of “fabricated” instead of its more usual meaning as “superimposed”, see Kataoka (2017b).

  44. NM 1: 63: tad etad anupapannam. idam eva tāvad bhavān vyācaṣṭām: kiṃ pradarśitaprāpakaṃ pramāṇam utādhyavasitaprāpakam? tatrānumāne pradarśanam eva nāsti kā kathā tatprāpaṇasya. pratyakṣe tu bāḍhaṃ pradarśanam asti na tu pradarśitaṃ prāpyate kṣaṇikatvenātikrāntatvāt. adhyavasitaprāpakatvam api durghaṭam. adhyavasāyasya bhavanmate vastuviṣayatvābhāvāt avastunaś ca prāptum aśakyatvāt. tad uktaṃ bhavadbhiḥ 'yathādhyavasāyam atattvatvāt yathātattvaṃ cānadhyavasāyāt' iti. mūlabhūtavastuprāptis tu kākatālīyam. na *hi tadanyatareṇāpi pramāṇena* spṛṣṭam yad gatvā prāpyate. (hi…pramāṇena ] Krasser (1997, p. 110) [after testimonium by Abhayadevasūri]; tu…pramāṇenāpi EdM). There are multiple ways to understand the kākatālīyanyāya; the second to last sentence could also end, “you might as well expect a crow to be struck on its head by a palm-fruit.”

  45. Krasser (1997, p. 115), tracing this to Apohaprakaraṇa (ed. Frauwallner), p. 239; as he notes this is paralleled in Jñānaśrīmitra’s later Apohaprakaraṇa (ed. Thakur, p. 228; trans. McCrea and Patil (2010, p. 92), where the quotation is unsourced).

  46. See “Sāmagrī’s Buddhist backstory,” above.

  47. Krasser (1997, p. 116nn. 10,11) is unable to trace this passage, though he notes the close resemblance of its first words to text-places in the first chapter of the Pramāṇaviniścaya and in Manorathanandin’s commentary on the opening of the Pramāṇavārttika.

  48. NM1: 64–65: nanu kālpanike 'pi santāne sati saṃvṛtyā pramāṇalakṣaṇam idaṃ nirvakṣyate. yathoktaṃ ‘sāṃvyavahārikasyaitat pramāṇasya lakṣaṇam vastutas tv anādyavidyāvāsanāropitagrāhyagrāhakādibhedaprapañcaṃ jñānamātram evedam iti kiṃ prāpyate ko vā prāpayati' iti. so 'yaṃ palāyanaprakāra iva prastūyate keyaṃ saṃvṛtir nāma sā 'pi satī asatī veti vikalpyamānā naiva vyavahārahetur bhavati. avidyāvāsanākṛtaś ca na bhedavyavahāraḥ kintu pāramārthika eveti sādhayiṣyate. sāṃvṛtasantānakalpanāyāṃ vā jātyavayaviprabhṛtayo 'pi sāṃvṛtāḥ kim iti neṣyante? vṛttivikalpādibādhakopahatatvād iti cet santāne 'pi samānaḥ panthā iti kadāśālambanam etat. The cross-reference to Jayanta’s defense of ontological dualism is, as Varadacharya suggests ad loc, to the NM’s ninth āhnika, on apavarga or final liberation. The strongest positive account of ontological difference falls in his rebuttal to the Advaitavedāntin position: Jayanta claims that the Vedāntin and the Buddhist are equally confused on this issue, and argues that perception, inference, and verbal testimony are all based on real difference (NM2: 470–471). As all our available means of knowing the world depend on bheda, its reality must be accepted. Moreover, in another point of terminological overlap between his imagined Vedāntin and Buddhist opponents, Jayanta rejects the notion of a beginningless, unreal avidyā as the source of bondage and rebirth (NM2: 472–473). This is one of several forward-pointing cross-references to the ninth āhnika found in Jayanta’s presentation of his model of prāmāṇyam, all of which point to larger refutations of Buddhist arguments: see NM1:41 (…iti cet na tasya kṣaṇabhaṅge nirākariṣyamāṇatvāt and ye ’pi […] te 'pi vijñānādvaitasiṣādhayiṣayaivam abhidadhānāḥ tannirāsaprasaṅga eva nirasiṣyante), NM1: 64 (etac ca savistaraṃ kṣaṇabhaṅgabhaṅge nirūpayiṣyate), NM1:84 (ekaś cāyam ākāraḥ pratibhāsyamānaḥ grāhyasyaiva bhavitum arhati na grāhakasyeti vakṣyate) and NM1:85 (vistaratas tu svaprakāśaṃ vijñānaṃ vijñānavādinirākaraṇe nirākariṣyāmaḥ). This supplies useful data for the as-yet unwritten compositional history of the Nyāyamāñjarī: given that the majority of the ninth āhnika purports to be a commentary on Nyāyasūtra 1.1.2 (NM2: 440–521), i.e. that which immediately precedes the list of accepted pramāṇas commented on in the majority of the first āhnika, it is possible that this reflects what was intially an effort to comment systematically on the received sūtrapāṭha, subsequently reorganized into the structure of the transmitted Nyāyamañjarī.

  49. Jayanta devotes the opening of the fifth āhnika to his retheorization of jāti, following directly upon his presentation and criticism of Dharmottara’s account of apoha and vyāvṛtti (‘exclusion’), the Buddhist alternatives to the shared Brahmanical notion of real universals. For the apoha critique see NM2: 21–29, reedited in Kataoka (2017a) and translated in Watson and Kataoka (2017); Jayanta’s siddhānta is given in NM2: 29–48 and is reedited with useful introduction in Kataoka (2010). On the intraconvertibility of Buddhist critiques of jāti as a metaphysical and social category, see Eltschinger (2012), especially pp. 117–135, and the brahmanical responses catalogued in Halbfass (1991). In another cross-reference, this time implicit, to the ninth āhnika (see previous note), Jayanta’s major presentation of his mereological theory is found late in that chapter, in his summary dismissal of Vasubandhu’s attack on the existence of atoms (NM2: 515–518).

  50. On Śubhagupta, see f.n. 27 above, McCrea and Patil (2010, pp. 142–143n71, citing Frauwallner 1961, p. 147), and compare Malavania’s remarks on Dharmottara’s ‘Yogācāra’ versus ‘sautrāntika’ leanings (Malavania, 1971, pp. xxii–xxiv).

  51. NBṬ, p. 30: puruṣasyārthaḥ puruṣārthaḥ. arthyate iti arthaḥ, kāmyate iti yāvat. heyo 'rthaḥ, upādeyo vā. heyo hy artho hātum iṣyate, upādeyo 'pi upādātum. na ca heyopādeyābhyām anyo rāśir asti. upekṣaṇīyo hy anupādeyatvād heya eva.

  52. NM1: 65–66: avyāpakaṃ cedaṃ lakṣaṇam. upekṣaṇīyaviṣayabodhasyāvyabhicārādiviśeṣaṇayogena labdhapramāṇabhāvasyāpy anenāsaṅgrahāt. nanu ko 'yam upekṣaṇīyo nāma viṣayaḥ sa hy apekṣanīyatvād eva nopādīyate cet sa tarhi heya eva anupādeyatvād iti naitad yuktam, upekṣaṇīyaviṣayasya svasaṃvedyatvenāpratyākhyeyatvāt. cf. Krasser’s translation (1997, pp. 117–118); he does not adduce the Nyāyabinduṭīkā as a parallel here, instead drawing attention to a discussion of the set of three terms hāna, upādāna, and upekṣā in Vātsyāyana’s Nyāyabhāṣya (op. cit, n. 14). This was, however, a locus classicus, to which Dharmottara was likely responding.

  53. NM1: 66–67: heyopādeyayor asti duḥkhaprītinimittatā | yatnena hānopādāne bhavatas tatra dehinām || yatnasādhyadvayābhāvād ubhayasyāpy asādhanāt | tābhyāṃ visadṛśaṃ vastu svasaṃviditam asti naḥ || upādeye ca viṣaye dṛṣṭe rāgaḥ pravartate | itaratra tu vidveṣaḥ tatrobhāv api durlabhau || yat tv anupādeyatvāt heya eveti tad aprayojakam || na hy evaṃ bhavati yad etan napuṃsakaṃ sa pumān astrītvāt strī vā napuṃsakaṃ apuṃstvād iti. strīpuṃbhyām anyad eva napuṃsakaṃ tathopalambhāt. evam upekṣaṇīyo 'pi viṣayo heyopādeyābhyām arthāntaraṃ tathopalambhād iti. yad etat tṛṇaparṇādi cakāsti pathi gacchataḥ | na dhīś chatrādivat tatra na ca kākodarādivat || tasmād upekṣaṇīyajñānasya tam aprāpayato 'pi prāmāṇyadarśanāt na prāpakatvaṃ tallakṣaṇam.

  54. See the testimony found in Yamāri’s (fl. ca. 1000–1050) unpublished subcommentary on the Pramāṇavārttikālaṃkāra of Prajñākaragupta, as reported by Franco (2019, pp. 262–263n.36): ṭīkākāras tu […] pramāṇaṃ ca sāṃvyavahārikam eva, na tu lokottaraṃ bhagavadrūpam. prayojanaṃ ca vañcanāvinākṛtāṃ pānāvagāhādiprāptiṃ, na punar abhyudayaniḥśreyasayoḥ prāptiṃ manyate. “[…]The Ṭīkākāra (Dharmottara), however…thinks that pramāṇa appertains only to everyday practice; it does not concern otherworldly matters that have the nature of the Buddha. And he thinks the purpose [of Dharmakīrti’s writing] is the attainment of [water for actions such as] drinking and bathing, which is brought about without deception [?], not the attainment good rebirth and liberation.” (translation Franco’s, slightly modified; I do not understand the sense of vañcanāvinākṛtāṃ).

  55. NM1:76: nanv etad bhikṣavo na kṣamante.

  56. This is a very truncated summary of NM1: 76–82.

  57. On the earlier history of the doctrine of pramāṇasamplava (as explicitly opposed to the pramāṇavyavasthā, the ‘differentiation of the pramāṇas,’ of the Buddhists), see Sen (1985), a brief review of Jayanta’s contribution to the doctrine.

  58. NM1:83 yat tāvad idam ākhyāyi rāśyantaranirākṛtau | pratyakṣasyaiva sāmarthyaṃ ity etan nopapadyate || pūrvāparānusandhānasāmarthyarahitātmanā | bhāraḥ katham ayaṃ voḍhum avikalpena pāryate || vikalpāḥ punar utprekṣāmātraniṣṭhitaśaktayaḥ | tebhyo vastuvyavasthāyāḥ kā kathā bhavatāṃ mate ||

  59. For a thoughtful reconstruction of the merits of the argument for such inherent self-reflexivity, see Arnold (2012, pp. 165–188).

  60. Given in a slightly different translation as the chapter epigram in Arnold’s discussion of svasaṃvitti (2012, p. 158, cf. 180–81).

  61. NM1: 85: apratyaksopalaṃbhasyaivārthadṛṣṭiḥ prasidhyati. pratyakṣopalambhasya tu nārthadṛṣṭiḥ. upalambha eva pratyakṣa iti dvitīyākārānavabhāsāt kuto 'rthadṛṣṭiḥ.

  62. Compare NM1:88 (aviditasaugatakṛtāntānām etac codyam) with NM2:21 (=Kataoka 2017a, p. 19: tad etad aviditabauddhasiddhāntānām abhidhānam), and cf. the identification of the latter position as Dharmottara’s in Watson and Kataoka (2017, pp. 56–67).

  63. NM1:88: te hi—vikalpaviṣaye vṛttim āhuḥ śabdānumānayoḥ | tebhyaḥ saṃbandhasiddhau ca nānavasthā na saṃplavaḥ || tathā hi darśanasamantarotpattyavāptadarśanacchāyā 'nurajyamānavapuṣo vikalpāḥ pratyakṣāyante. tadullikhitakālpanikataditaraparāvṛttasvabhāvasāmānyākārapraviṣṭo 'yam anumānavyvahāraḥ pāramparyeṇa. maṇiprabhāmaṇibuddhivat tanmūla iti tatprāptaye 'vakalpate, na punaḥ pratyakṣaikasamadhigamyaṃ vastu spṛśatīti kutaḥ samplava kuto vānavasthā.

  64. NBṬ: 85–86. naitad evam yasmāt pratyakṣabalotpannenādhyasāyena dṛśyatvenārtho 'vasīyate, notprekṣitatvena. darśanaṃ cārthasākṣātkaraṇākhyaṃ pratyakṣavyāpāraḥ. utprekṣaṇaṃ tu vikalpavyāpāraḥ. tathā hi—parokṣam arthaṃ vikalpayanta utprekṣāmahe, na tu paśyāma iti utprekṣātmakaṃ vikalpavyāpāram anubhavād adhyavasyanti. tasmāt svavyāpāraṃ tiraskṛtya pratyakṣavyāpāram ādarśayati yatrārthe pratyakṣapūrvako 'dhyavasāyaḥ, tatra pratyakṣaṃ kevalam eva pramāṇam iti. On this passage see McCrea and Patil (2006, p. 330) and Dreyfus (1996, p. 216: otherwise, following the Tibetan); I largely follow McCrea and Patil, differing only in how I construe the final sentence (but see their n. 71, explaining their interpretation).

  65. NM1: 88–89: tad etad vañcanāmātram. yo hi tādātmyatadutpattisvabhāvaḥ pratibandha iṣyate sa kiṃ vastudharmaḥ? vikalpāropitākāradharmo vā? tatra nāyam āropitadharmo bhavitum arhati. vastu vastunā janyate vastu ca vastusvabhāvaṃ bhavet. tasmād vastudharmaḥ pratibandhaḥ. vikalpaiś ca vastu na spṛśyate tatpratibandhaś ca niścīyata iti citram.

  66. See for example, within a large secondary literature, Gillon (1989).

  67. NM1: 89: idaṃ ca subhāṣitam. vastunoḥ pratibandhaḥ tādātmyādiḥ, gamyagamakatvaṃ ca vikalpāropitayor apohayoḥ [.] tad evaṃ anyatra pratibandhaḥ, anyatra tadgrahaṇopāyaḥ; anyatra pratītiḥ anyatra pravṛttiprāptī iti sarvaṃ kaitavam. na ca dṛśyasaṃsparśaśūnyātmanāṃ vikalpānāṃ darśanacchāyā kācana sambhavati. idantāgrāhitvasaṃspaṣṭatvādy api vastusaṃsparśarahitam akiñcitkaram apramāṇatvānapāyāt.

  68. Once again, Jayanta may be responding directly to a minor feature of Dharmottara’s language; cf. the latter’s distinction between dṛśyatva and utprekṣitatva, cited in f.n. 64. On the adoption of a variation of Dharmottara’s language of adhyavasāya (as the synonymous adhyavasāna) by Kashmirian poeticans contemporaneous with him in their theorization of utprekṣā, see Bronner (2016, pp. 115–118).

  69. Thus I would distinguish my remarks here from Pollock’s several important discussions (1989a, 1989b1996, 2006, pp. 518–524) of the application of the category ‘ideology’ to Indological research; the articles contained in Houben (1996) present a usefully diverse set of perspectives on this question.

  70. This is a very large and complex scholarship: representative publications include Silverstein (1992, 1993, 2010), Gal and Irvine (1995), and Kroskrity (2000); see also Keane (2018), for an argument to expand the domain yet further to “semiotic ideology.” Elements of Bourdieu’s work, while independent of this largely American trajectory, usefully complement it: see Bourdieu (1991a: esp. 43–65, pp. 171–202, and 1991b (especially germane here, as it discusses formal philosophical discourse)).

  71. NM1: 614–629; cf. Kataoka (2007).

  72. For a twentieth century account of such calibration (‘self-censorship’) see Bourdieu (1991b, pp. 70–87) (\(\approx\) 1991a, pp. 137–159); my phrasing here is influenced by Quentin Skinner’s repurposing of Austin’s speech-act theory to reconstruct the context of a particular intellectual intervention. Cf. his dictum that “[it] may indeed be impossible to recover anything more than a small fraction of the things that Plato, say, was doing The Republic. My point is only that the extent to which we can hope to understand The Republic depends in part on the extent to which we can recover them” (Skinner 2002, p. 107).

  73. This is especially, if paradoxically, the case because so many of its users were committed to Sanskrit’s eternality: see Aklujkar (1996).

  74. Bronkhorst (2011, p. 1); much later in his presentation, Bronkhorst—rightly, I think—characterizes this as “principally an intuition shared by thinkers of this period, rather than an explicitly held logical position” (2011, p. 134).

  75. Drawing again from his conclusions: “[F]or Indian thinkers of the period, I believe, the obviousness of the principle was beyond question. This hypothesis would explain both the lack of explicit discussions of the principle and the marked resistance to abandoning it.” (Bronkhorst 2011, p. 135). In his final summation, Bronkhorst speaks in favor of “the study of implicit preconceptions” (136).

  76. Bronkhorst (2011, p. 43): “Grammar may have supplied the terminology here, a very useful terminology at that, but Nāgārjuna’s ideas hardly owe their existence to it.”

  77. Bronkhorst: “form”, though “class” is perhaps better.

  78. See Pollock (1989a) and (extending this line of thinking in a different direction) Arnold (2011).

  79. Bronkhorst (2011, pp. 98–100). Candrakīrti’s sophisticated gloss might be productively read as an effort to reintroduce the problem as one speaking to contemporaneous concerns.

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Acknowledgements

I am grateful to Andrew Ollett, Sheldon Pollock, and Isabelle Ratié for their comments on the draft of this article, as I am to the JIP’s two anonymous reviewers for their suggestions. Special thanks are due to Zoë Woodbury High for her assistance with the German-language secondary scholarship cited here.

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Cox, W. Bhaṭṭa Jayanta on Epistemic Complexity. J Indian Philos 50, 387–425 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10781-022-09506-4

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Keywords

  • Bhaṭṭa Jayanta
  • Nyāyamañjarī
  • Dharmottara
  • Epistemology
  • Causal complexity
  • Sāmagrī
  • Samplava
  • Kāraka
  • Linguistic ideology