Author: Minakshi Sethy
Author Affiliation: Department of Philosophy, Kamala Nehru College, University of Delhi
Abstract: There has been an academic quest to know about Sāṅkhya’s dualistic theory: relationship of Purușa and Prakṛti. Undoubtedly, Sāṅkhya is one of the orthodox systems in Indian knowledge traditions. It believes on the existence of God, doctrine of rebirth, doctrine of Karma, liberation etc. Moreover, it is also very much positivist in its attitude. Whether Sāṅkhya used in the sense of right knowledge in the Bhagavat-Gītā or not, has to be examined. What is knowledge? What is right for me may not be the same for others. Then, in what context we give our judgment as right? According to Saint Kapila, Sāṅkhya means right knowledge of the separation of Purușa from Prakṛti. If both are independent realities, what is the requirement of separation? If Prakṛti is the first cause, un-caused cause of everything, then in the first instance where Purușa came? Is it the by-product of Naturalism? Who produced first Purușa? Who required him/her? Can Prakṛti called as matter (same of Cārvāka’s Matter?), and Purușa as mind, or something else? The paper tries to understand the Sāṅkhya’s ‘Purușa-Prakṛti Relationship’; relationship of Mind and matter in general and Soul and Nature in particular, the status of Guṇas in the world evolution process.
Keywords: Sankshya, Purusha, Prakrti, Karma, Naturalism, Mind, Soul, Matter, Nature