Free Will, Agency, and Selfhood in Indian Philosophy

ISBN : 9780199922758

Matthew R. Dasti; Edwin F. Bryant
336 Pages
165 x 234 mm
Pub date
Jan 2014
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Indian thought is well known for diverse philosophical and contemplative excursions into the nature of selfhood. Led by Buddhists and the yoga traditions of Hinduism and Jainism, Indian thinkers have engaged in a rigorous analysis and reconceptualization of our common notion of self. Less understood is the way in which such theories of self intersect with issues involving agency and free will; yet such intersections are profoundly important, as all major schools of Indian thought recognize that moral goodness and religious fulfillment depend on the proper understanding of personal agency. Moreover, their individual conceptions of agency and freedom are typically nodes by which an entire school's epistemological, ethical, and metaphysical perspectives come together as a systematic whole. Free Will, Agency, and Selfhood in Indian Philosophy explores the contours of this issue, from the perspectives of the major schools of Indian thought. With new essays by leading specialists in each field, this volume provides rigorous analysis of the network of issues surrounding agency and freedom as developed within Indian thought.


Chapter 1 Agency in Samkhya and Yoga - Edwin F. Bryant
Chapter 2 Free Persons, Empty Selves - Karin Meyers
Chapter 3 Free Will and Volunteerism in Jainism - Christopher Key Chapple
Chapter 4 Paninian Grammarians on Agency and Independence - George Cardona
Chapter 5 Nyaya's Self as Agent and Knower - Matthew R. Dasti
Chapter 6 Freedom Because of Duty - Elisa Freschi
Chapter 7 Just Another Word for Nothing Left to Lose - Jay L. Garfield
Chapter 8 Self, Causation, and Agency in the Advaita of Sankara Sthaneshwar Timalsina
Chapter 9 The Linguistics and Cosmology of Agency in Nondual Kashmiri Saiva Thought
Chapter 10 Free Will, Agency, and Selfhood in Ramanuja - Martin Ganeri
Chapter 11 Dependent Agency and Hierarchical Determinism in the Theology of Madhva - David Buchta
Chapter 12 Agency in the Gaudiya Vaisnava Tradition - Satyanarayana Dasa and Jonathan B. Edelmann

About the author: 

Matthew R. Dasti is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Bridgewater State University. Edwin F. Bryant is Professor of Hindu Religion and Philosophy at Rutgers University.

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