Description About the Book
The ancient Nalanda Mahavihara was noted for its universalistic outlook and wide intellectual interests. The Nava Nalanda Mahavihara is a humble successor in its aims, objectives and aspirations. The Mahavihara was established in 1951 to promote advanced studies and research in Buddhist learning and to publish works of high value to scholars. As a part of rehabilitating and re-orientating ancient learning and scholarship, the publication of this Research Volume I has been undertaken with the cooperation of the former scholars of the Mahavihara. All the papers are related to Buddhist learning, except one paper which discusses an interesting problem of Panini's grammar. It may suffice to observe that Pariini's grammar had a special fascination for the scholars of ancient Nalanda Mahavihara, and every student was required to make a special study of it since Sanskrit was the medium of instruction, and the Sastras and other works produced by the ancient Mahavihara were all composed in Sanskrit. Some useful original rare Sanskrit texts have also been presented in the present volume. This volume was first published in 1957 and was highly appreciated by the scholars of India and abroad. Due to great demand of the academic world Mahavihara has again reprinted this research volume.
About the Author
The editor of this research volume was Dr.Satkari Mookerjee, formerly professor of Sanskrit, University of Calcutta. He was an erudite and reputed scholar of general Indology, Sanskrit and Philosophy. He become the Director of the Mahavihara on March 1, 1995 and continued till June 30, 1964. Under his dynamic directorship the teaching and research activities of the Mahavihara reached its climax. Several scholars from India and abroad completed their research works and obtained doctoral degrees. He was the author and editor of several important publications like The Buddhist Philosophy of Universal Flux, The Jain Philosophy of Non- Absolutism, Nava Nalanda Mahavihara Research Publication Vol. I & II.
The present work constitutes the Volume I of "The NAVANA-LANDAMAHAVIHARA RESEARCH PUBLICATION". It is the result of a team work in which the contributions of several scholars are embodied. The scholars chose their own subjects and almost all the papers relate to Buddhist learning, except one paper which discusses an interesting problem of Pariini's grammar, I do not think that an apology is necessary for this apparently non-Buddhist dissertation. The old Nalanda Mahavihara was a centre of SANSKRIT LEARNING and catholic in its academic interests. It fostered the study of the Vedas, medical science, grammar, logic Brahmanical and Buddhist, and all other branches and subjects which engaged scholars' attention of the time. It may suffice to observe that Panini's grammar had a special fascination for the scholars of old Nalanda University, and every student was required to make a special study of it since SANSKRIT was the medium of instruction, and the Sastras and other works produced by the old University were all composed in SANSKRIT. Of course Pali, Apabhramsa and Prakrita, and what has been called HYBRID SANSKRIT by Professor Edgerton were also studied and understood by the scholars.
We now propose to give a brief survey of the contents of this Volume. The first paper is a monograph entitled 'The Absolutist's standpoint in Logic'. It discusses an interesting and intriguing problem which scepticism and metaphysical absolutism necessarily entailed because of their denial of the validity of the logical categories. This problem could not have arisen if formal consistency alone had been deemed a justifiable logical criterion. But even the sceptics could not give a wide berth to the commitment of Indian logic to the material truth of the syllogistic argument. It may not be idle to presume that this problem of Indian logic will have an interest for the modern mind.
We have great pleasure in introducing to the academic world the Volume II of The Nava Nalanda Mahavihara Research Publication. Just like its predecessor, it is also the outcome of team-work in which several scholars have taken part. The majority of the article3 relate to Buddhist thought. It is a happy feature that all the contributors have been associated with our Institute, in one capacity or another. The old Nalanda Mahavihara was noted for its universalistic outlook and wide intellectual interests, there was no branch of knowledge in India which was not cultivated within its precincts. Our Institute (Nava Nalanda Mahavihara) is, not only by its nomenclature but also in its aims, objectives and aspirations an humble successor ; and the hopes of the Buddhist World will be fulfilled only when this infant institute will grow in dimensions and reach the zenith of its development to justify the name and anscestory which it claims. Accordingly, we have not been squeamish and did not impose restrictions on our contributors. The papers, each in their own way, throw light on subjects which were studied in ancient India. The speciality of this Volume is that it contains articles both in English and Hindi.
We now propose to give a running survey of the subject-matter of the contents. The first article is entitled 'The Omniscient as the Founder of Religion.' It treats of a subject, which has not only a religious appeal but a metaphysical interest. It was suggested by the late Sir Brajendra Nath Seal, the then George V Professor of Philosophy in Calcutta University in about 1930, that this subject should be studied and presented to the modern world with its metaphysical foundation. The writer also felt that the problem did not outlive its interest and utility. The second article is entitled 'The Nature of Ultimate Reality', and it has been tackled from the standpoint of diverse Schools of Indian philosophy.
Book's Contents and Sample Pages