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Sarukkai, Sundar, and . What is science?

2012, National Book Trust, India

Summary: This book serves as an excellent introduction to Indian philosophy from the standpoint of the Nyãya-Vaisesika worldview. The book is divided into six chapters: (i) Introduction; (ii) Doubt (including sections like “Types of Doubt” and “Limits of Doubt”); (iii) Indian Logic (in which Dignaga, Dharmakïrti, and a “Summary of Themes in Indian Logic Relevant to Philosophy of Science” are discussed); (iv) Logic in Science: The Western Way (dealing, among other things, with induction, deduction, and laws and counterfactuals); (v) Science in Logic: The Indian Way? ; and (vi) Knowledge, Truth and Language (including sections with titles like the Pramäna Theory, Truth in Western and Indian Philosophies and Science, Effability, and Bhartrhai).

Comment: The book is recommendable, not only as an introduction to significant and basic themes in Indian philosophy, but also for insightful details in explaining several complex ideas in science and philosophy and for a clear explication of the Indian contribution to discussions on them. Could be suitable for both undergratuates and postgraduates.

Sarukkai, Sundar, and . Indian Philosophy and Philosophy of Science

2005, Motilal Banarsidass Publishers

Summary: Sundar Sarukkai’s Indian Philosophy and Philosophy of Science shows how the two very different approaches from East and West can illuminate each other. It is not an introduction to the philosophy of science, but rather an invitation to look at philosophy of science in a new way, using the approaches of classical Indian logic, in particular Navya Nyāya . Sarukkai’s major thesis is that in the West philosophy of science tries to put logic into science, and that in the East Indian logic seeks to put science into logic. The naïve Western approach takes an abstract view of logic and formulates science using abstract logical and mathematical theories. Indian logic looks at the world and remains involved with the world throughout. Because of this, logical arguments have to involve contingent matters of fact or observation .Western readers may find the lack of distinction between induction and deduction disturbing, but the Eastern involvement with the world, not merely abstraction, reflects a different way of looking at what logic is and where its origins lie.

Comment: An essential bok for those interested in Indian philosophy of science. The topic is very specialized, but the book is really clear and could be read by both undergraduates and postgraduates. Chapter 3 is really recommendable for undergraduates, since it offers a great introduction to classical indian logic.