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  • 1.
    Oetke, Claes
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Oriental Languages, Indology.
    A Brief Appraisal of the Sadvitiyaprayoga2013In: Journal of Indian Philosophy, ISSN 0022-1791, E-ISSN 1573-0395, Vol. 41, no 1, p. 43-55Article in journal (Refereed)
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  • 2.
    Oetke, Claus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Oriental Languages.
    Some further comments on the first section of the Vigrahavyavartani2012In: Journal of Indian Philosophy, ISSN 0022-1791, E-ISSN 1573-0395, Vol. 40, no 4, p. 371-394Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The publication deals with topics concerning the interpretation of the VigrahavyAvartanA << in as much as they are relevant for the understanding of (early) Madhyamaka-philosophy in general. A major part of the article is dedicated to a critical assessment of a number of views which have been propagated recently in a paper by Sharma (In: Nagoya studies in Indian culture and Buddhism, Saa(1)integral bhAa(1)A pound, 2011). A primary goal of the present investigation consists in substantiating the claim that early Madhyamaka represents a metaphysical teaching which stands in sharp contrast not only to stances of common sense but also to tenets propagated in Buddhist dogmatics.

  • 3.
    Oetke, Claus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Oriental Languages.
    Some Issues of Scholarly Exegesis (In Indian Philosophy)2009In: Journal of Indian Philosophy, ISSN 0022-1791, E-ISSN 1573-0395, Vol. 37, no 5, p. 415-497Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The article deals with some facets of the phenomenon of the underdetermination of meaning by (linguistic) data which are particularly relevant for textual exegesis in the historico-philological disciplines. The paper attempts to demonstrate that lack of relevant information is by no means the only important reason why certain issues of interpretation cannot be definitely settled by means of traditional philological methods but that the objective nonexistence of pertinent data is equally significant. It is claimed that the phenomenon of objective under-determination possesses among others two major consequences: (1) A strict separation between the exploration of the history of (Indian) philosophy and philosophical criticism is theoretically incorrect. (2) Transference of indeterminacy and vagueness to the target langue in translations of textual sources is not only legitimate but sometimes most appropriate. Presumably the relevance of the discussed issues is not strictly confined to the area of Indian philosophy.

  • 4.
    Oetke, Claus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Oriental Languages.
    The Significance of Behaviour-Related Criteria for Textual Exegesis - and Their Neglect in Indian Studies2013In: Journal of Indian Philosophy, ISSN 0022-1791, E-ISSN 1573-0395, Vol. 41, no 1, p. 43-55Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Against the background of the fact that speakers not seldom intend to convey imports which deviate from the linguistically expressed meanings of linguistic items, the present article addresses some consequences of this phenomenon which appear to still be neglected in textual studies. It is suggested that understanding behaviour is in some respect a primary objective of exegesis and that due attention must be attributed to the high diversity of behaviour-related criteria by which interpretations of linguistic items are to be evaluated. Although we intimate in addition that individual (meaningful) sentences occurring either in oral conversations or in written documents generally exhibit a multiplicity of contents of diverse types and that the circumstance that sometimes only a content equalling the linguistic significance of a pertinent unit matters for purposes of interpretation is caused by a material coincidence of different varieties of content, the tenets advocated in the paper do not essentially depend on that view. On the other hand, the following assumptions are relevant in the present connection: (a) A number of deviances between imports conveyed by linguistic utterances and literal meanings of expressions occur due to maxims of linguistic behaviour that are quite independent of lexical and syntactic features of individual natural languages. (b) It is by no means an exceptional phenomenon that imports not derivable by grammatical rules of a particular language alone possess primary importance for interpretation and textual exegesis. In view of significant affinities between understanding of sentences and of texts it is argued that the consideration of diverse aspects of behaviour possesses relevance for textual exegesis at least in the following respects: (1) By delivering a heuristic device for discerning problems affecting adopted interpretations it encourages searches for alternatives. (2) It provides means for evaluating the degree of acceptability of particular textual exegeses and possibly rejecting them on a more rational basis than mere intuition. (3) It offers possibilities for critically assessing the validity of explicit arguments advanced in favour of or in opposition to some interpretation. (4) It furnishes a background for assessing certain disputes about translation. The dimension of linguistic behaviour also attains importance in connection with questions of exegesis which are not concerned with assessments of (propositional) contents intended to be communicated, such as the ascertainment of the function which some argument possesses in a context. For substantiating the thesis that omission of raising relevant questions concerning behaviour is not an isolated phenomenon two examples will be employed: (1) A discussion concerning the exegesis of a crucial passage of DignAga's PramAa(1)double dagger asamuccaya and the PramAa(1)double dagger asamuccayava(1)> tti, (2) a critical appraisal of a recent publication dealing with the interpretation of the second chapter of NAgArjuna's MA << lamadhyamakakArikA-s.

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  • 5.
    Oetke, Claus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Oriental Languages, Indology.
    Two Investigations on the Madhyamakakarikas and the Vigrahavyavartani2011In: Journal of Indian Philosophy, ISSN 0022-1791, E-ISSN 1573-0395, Vol. 39, no 3, p. 245-325Article, review/survey (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose of the article is to provide support for the contention that two fundamental treatises representing the teaching of Madhyamaka, viz. the Mūlamadhyamakakārikās and the Vigrahavyāvartanī, were designed to establish and justify a metaphysical tenet claiming that no particulars of any kind can exist on some level of final analysis and that this was the only primary concern of those works. Whereas the former text is in the first place dedicated to providing proofs of the central metaphysical thesis the major objective of the second treatise lies in a defense of the claim against possible objections. A correlate of this view regarding the content of those two works is on the one hand that the philosophy of the founder of the Madhyamaka-school essentially consists in a metaphysical teaching implying a radical rejection of a stance propagated in earlier Buddhist schools according to which objects of ordinary experience could be reduced to or explained by the existence of other sorts of particulars that can be theoretically postulated. On the other hand the exegesis advocated in the article implies that theorems pertaining to the nature of language or the relationship between language and non-linguistic reality are not at all a predominant issue in the pertinent texts and presumably were not a major matter of concern of early Madhyamaka in general. Accordingly matters pertaining to questions of semantics attain relevance at best in the form of objective consequences which the metaphysical doctrine might entail. The paper focuses on the second chapter of the Mūlamadhyamakakārikās as well as the segment of the Vigrahavyāvartanī which deals with the first major problem, represented by the verses 1 – 4 and 21 – 29. The reason is that a detailed and thoroughgoing investigation of these two textual passages is suited to disprove a contention voiced by Western scholars who suppose that the teaching of the founder of Madhyamaka embodies a particular claim pertaining to the relationship between language and non-linguistic reality.

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