Now online: Evening Lecture, "Nature of Knowledge in Indian Intellectual Traditions"

Evening lecture now online (link below), plus conference photos here.

Dr. Sundar Sarukkai, Manipal University

"Nature of Knowledge in Indian Intellectual Traditions”

Alumni Hall, University of King's College

July 22, 2010, 7pm



Vimeo video



The fact that knowledge is theorised differently in different cultures suggests
that knowledge is not a transparent universal commodity. This has serious
implications for history of science, especially for the question of transmission
of knowledge from one culture to another. For example, the dismissive
response of the ‘West’ to Indian logic, mathematics, technology or medicine
is not merely an assertion of cultural hegemony but it also illustrates an
ambiguity in recognizing something as ‘knowledge’. Indian philosophies are
characterised by a rigorous study of knowledge. These theories of knowledge
profoundly influenced the idea of knowledge in Indian medicine,
mathematics, metallurgy, chemistry and even soteriology. Indian
epistemology was special in that it was always empirically grounded,
because of which the distinction between logic and epistemology, which was
essential for the Greeks, was not made in Indian philosophy. Perhaps not so
surprisingly, in the beginning of modern science there is a similar tension
between classical Greek view of knowledge and scientific knowledge. This
paper discusses some unique characteristics of the Indian views on
knowledge and argues how the idea of knowledge in Indian thought shows
significant thematic overlaps with early attempts to define scientific