Abstract

Presented here are arguments for the novel and interesting Navya-Nyāya thesis that we can be perceptually acquainted with universals or properties (nominalist arguments will not be addressed directly: we start out with the assumption that there are universals!). The first section briefly explicates the Nyāya notion of universals and then states the formal Nyāya position on how we might come to know universals. The second section analyzes the Nyāya arguments for the thesis that universals are perceived, rather than merely thought about or conceived, first by rehearsing the arguments for a theory of real perceivable universals, offered by Jayanta Bhaṭṭa in his Nyāyamañjarī, and then by detailing Gaṅgeśa’s unique contribution to this debate: the idea that universals or qualifiers are given as objects in indeterminate or non-conceptual perception. The third section argues that this thesis should be welcomed by direct realists. This essay aims to articulate a deep connection between direct realism about the external world and the availability of universals in nonconceptual perception, as opposed to the non-conceptual awareness of bare particulars.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1529-1898
Print ISSN
0031-8221
Pages
pp. 287-302
Launched on MUSE
2014-04-14
Open Access
No
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