Divine Self, Human Self: The Philosophy of Being in Two Gita Commentaries

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9781441154644: Divine Self, Human Self: The Philosophy of Being in Two Gita Commentaries
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The Gita is a central text in Hindu traditions, and commentaries on it express a range of philosophical-theological positions. Two of the most significant commentaries are by Sankara, the founder of the Advaita or Non-Dualist system of Vedic thought and by Ramanuja, the founder of the Visistadvaita or Qualified Non-Dualist system. Their commentaries offer rich resources for the conceptualization and understanding of divine reality, the human self, being, the relationship between God and human, and the moral psychology of action and devotion. This book approaches their commentaries through a study of the interaction between the abstract atman (self) and the richer conception of the human person. While closely reading the Sanskrit commentaries, Ram-Prasad develops reconstructions of each philosophical-theological system, drawing relevant and illuminating comparisons with contemporary Christian theology and Western philosophy.

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"The author presents both a re-thinking of the traditional interpretations of the commentaries and new thinking about their implications for contemporary theology, including the moral psychology of action and devotion ... The book will be of interest and value especially to libraries supporting graduate programs in comparative theology, metaphysics and epistemology, Hindu philosophy and religious studies, or East-West studies." --Robert R. Rahl, Catholic Library World

About the Author:

Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad is Professor of Comparative Religion and Philosophy in the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, and Associate Dean for Research, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, at Lancaster University, UK. He is the author of Knowledge and Liberation in Classical Indian Thought (Palgrave, 2001), Advaita Epistemology and Metaphysics: An outline of Indian non-realism (Routledge, 2002), Eastern Philosophy (Wiedenfield and Nicholson, 2005), India: Life, Myth and Art (Duncan Baird, 2006), which has been translated into French, Polish and Finnish, and Indian Philosophy and the Consequences of Knowledge (Ashgate, 2007). He is a member of the Academic Advisory Council at the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies and a regular contributor to BBC Radio 4's Beyond Belief and Sunday Programme.

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