Indian philosophy and the concept of liberation (mokṣa) in the “Mānava-Dharmaśāstra”
AbstractThe article deals with the concept of liberation (mokṣa) in the “Mānava-Dharmaśāstra” (hereinafter the MDŚ), in particular as this concept features in its sixth section (ślokas 35, 36, 37, 40, 44, 58, 78, 81). Although this text is not philosophical, the author proves its significance for the history of philosophy. Based on the research methodology developed by Vilen Gorsky, the author claims that MDŚ (1) contains a text devoted to the concept of mokṣa, which is the first in the Indian tradition, albeit a brief, but substantially clear, not aphoristic (or metaphorical) one; (2) it actually describes the states of the liberated in life (jīvan-mukti) and after life (videha-mukti), although these terms are not yet used; (3) the characteristic feature of its description of the final release is more likely to testify to the not-two understanding of the transcendental state, since the liberated is in Brahman. Thereupon, the doctrine of mokṣa from the MDŚ, which could have subsequently proved significant to the Indian philosophical tradition, has been compared with the first Indian philosophical texts (“The Brahma Sūtras”, “The Nyāya Sūtras” and “Vaiśeṣika Sūtras”) that also touch upon the topic of liberation. As a result, it has been established that the idea of mokṣa is most fully described not in the sūtras, but in the MDŚ.
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