Neil Shah’s approachable yet authoritative tone suits the subject matter perfectly in this refreshingly simple but never condescending audiobook that’s palatable to all audiences.
Sue Hamilton explores how the traditions have attempted to understand the nature of reality in terms of inner or spiritual quest and introduces distinctively Indian concepts, such as karma and rebirth. She also explains how Indian thinkers have understood issues of reality and knowledge - issues that are also an important part of the Western philosophical tradition.
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By UMARRAJ on 01-06-14
Accessible and Stimulating
This book covers in less than 5 hours almost all the interesting and important schools in Indian Ontology and Epistemology between the Vedic times and 11th Century.
Starting from the Vedic speculations and the place of sacrifice in maintaining the cosmos and the distillation of Vedic thought in the Monism of the Upanishads, the book guides a reader with little background in Indian tradition through the debates between the Nyaya-Vaisheshika school of transcendental realism as well as the Buddhist exegesis on the two levels of reality and a very easy to follow discussion of the Nagarjuna's concept of emptiness.
The book ends with a brief overview of Shankara's Advait Vedanta and Ramanuja's Vishishtadvaita Vedanta.
Although Hamilton's point of view is what is considered relevant in Indian Philosophy from a Western point of view, she has accommodated the overreaching importance of Soteriology in all Indian philosophical positions discussed.
Strongly recommended for any one interested in the foundations of Hindu and Buddhist philosophy. Sadly the Jain Metaphysics is neglected but that is understandable given that this is a Very Short Introduction.
The narrator (Neil Shah) has done an excellent job.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
By Mel DeJesus on 14-08-17
this was sadly irrelevant
the reading with a strong origin story but this quickly dissolves into an arcana that's mostly glossed over.