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Parasitism and Disjunctivism in Nyāya Epistemology

From: Philosophy East and West
Volume 62, Number 1, January 2012
pp. 1-15 | 10.1353/pew.2012.0012



This article examines a number of arguments I collectively term arguments from parasitism, which Nyāya employs to illustrate that rational reflection, the institution of language, and even error itself presuppose a ground-level basis of veridical cognitive interaction with the world. It further suggests that by such arguments, coupled with its stress on the inerrancy of pramāṇ as, Nyāya anticipates and supports the contemporary philosophical movement known as (epistemological) disjunctivism.