Malhotra, Rajiv

Indra's net: defending Hinduism's philosophical unity - Noida Harper Collins 2014 - xix, 376 p.

Table of content


1. Two opposing camps: continuity vs. discontinuity; unity vs. disunity
2. We are all jewels in Indra's Net
3. Indra's Net and Buddhism
4. Influences on modern society
5. Who is a Hindu?
6. Hinduism: Surfing Indra's Net
7. Framing the debate in three disciplines
8. pt. 1 PURVA PAKSHA (Examination of My Opponents' Positions)
9. 1.Eight Myths to be Challenged
10. Myth 1 India's optimum state is Balkanization
11. Myth 2 Colonial Indology's biases were turned into Hinduism
12. Myth 3 Hinduism was manufactured and did not grow organically
13. Myth 4 Yogic experience is not a valid path to enlightenment and tries to copy Western science
14. Myth 5 Western social ethics was incorporated as seva and karma yoga
15. Myth 6 Hinduism had no prior self-definition, unity or coherence
16. Myth 7 Hinduism is founded on oppression and sustained by it
17. Myth 8 Hinduism presumes the sameness of all religions
18. Summary of both sides of the debate
19. Contents note continued: 2.The Mythmakers: A Brief History
20. My wake-up call: How I discovered the myth
21. Missionary origins
22. Founders of the Myth of Neo-Hinduism
23. The Chorus Line
24. 3.Paul Hacker's Construction of `neo-Hinduism'
25. Initial romance with Advaita Vedanta and its personal influences on Hacker
26. Hacker starts his attack on contemporary Hinduism
27. Alleging political motives and appropriations from the West
28. Hacker on Vivekananda and the West
29. Allegation 1 Importance of Direct Experience
30. Allegation 2 `Tat Tvam Asi' ethic
31. Allegation 3 Nationalist agenda
32. Allegation 4 Inclusivism and sameness
33. 4.Agehananda Bharati on Neo-Hinduism as a `Pizza Effect'
34. Pizza Effect: Indians copy Westerners
35. Hinduism deviates from Indian tradition
36. Fear of sexual impotence drives neo-Hindus
37. Bharati's definition of neo-Hinduism tenets
38. 5.Ursula King's Bridge from Hacker to Rambachan
39. 6.Rambachan's Argument to Fragment Hinduism
40. Contents note continued: Using Shankara to shoot down Vivekananda
41. Issues with methodology
42. Essentializing Shankara
43. Challenging the direct experience of the rishi-yogi
44. Is Rambachan fixated on Christian assumptions?
45. Allegation that yoga makes people less rational and intelligent
46. Political allegations
47. Western scholars' support for Rambachan
48. Many scholars disagree with Rambachan
49. 7.The Myth Goes Viral
50. Richard King
51. Brian Pennington
52. Peter van der Veer, Sheldon Pollock and others
53. Hindu leaders echo the chorus
54. Some academic defenders of contemporary Hinduism
55. pt. 2 UTTARA PAKSHA (My Response)
56. 8.Historical Continuity and Colonial Disruption
57. Integral unity in the sacred texts
58. The dynamics of insiders and outsiders
59. Samgraha: Harmonious organization of diversity
60. The ubiquity of samgraha texts throughout history
61. Swami Vivekananda follows his tradition's footsteps
62. The colonial disruption
63. Contents note continued: European debates: Are the Hindus Aryans or Pantheists?
64. Reduction into `Indian schools of thought'
65. Postmodern and post-colonial distortions
66. Challenging the Neo-Hinduism thesis
67. 9.Traditional Foundations of Social Consciousness
68. Western methodological straitjacket misapplied to Vivekananda
69. The `world-negating' misinterpretation of social problems
70. Origin of Christian philanthropy
71. Conditions that led to the revival of Hindu seva
72. Sahajanand Swami and social activism in contemporary Hinduism
73. Swami Vivekananda's sevayoga
74. 10.Harmonizing Vedanta and Yoga
75. Vedanta's evolution at the time of Shankara
76. Theory of two realities
77. Yoga and classical texts
78. Shankara's mentor's writing
79. Upanishads
80. Bhagavad-Gita
81. Shankara's own kind of yoga: cognitive shift without action
82. Systematic withdrawal from particular to universal
83. Dissolving the text/experience gap
84. Contents note continued: Difference from Patanjali's Yoga
85. No causation is involved
86. Flexibility on anubhava
87. Summarizing Shankara's posture on anubhava/yoga
88. Respect for yoga
89. Yoga as preparation for higher practices
90. Comparing different levels of meditation, dhyana
91. Reasons for rejecting yoga at times
92. Advaita Vedanta beyond Shankara
93. Four historical periods
94. Vivekachudamani
95. Other later texts
96. 11.Mithya, Open Architecture and Cognitive Science
97. The unity of all existence
98. Puma
99. Mithya as Relative Reality
100. Samavesha principle of integrality
101. Common toolbox and open architecture
102. Adhyatma-vidya
103. Rishis and cognitive science
104. Robustness of the ecosystem over time
105. 12.Digestion and Self-Destruction
106. The metabolism of digestion
107. The flea market of modern gurus
108. Digestion and the neo-Hinduism thesis
109. Contents note continued: Conclusion: The `Poison Pill' for Protection of Hinduism
110. Hinduism's predicament today
111. The Porcupine Defence and the Poison Pill Protection
112. Astika and Nastika: Redefining the terms of the interfaith debate
113. The criteria for nastika: Principles that must be rejected
114. History Centrism
115. Disembodied knowing and self-alienation
116. Synthetic cosmology
117. Fear of chaos
118. Controversial implications of the Astika/Nastika approach
119. Refuting the myth of sameness
120. Poison pill versus digestion
121. How the poison pill strategy works.



It is fashionable among intellectuals to assert that dharma traditions lacked any semblance of unity before the British period, and that the contours of contemporary Hinduism were bequeathed to us by our colonial masters. Such arguments routinely target Swami Vivekananda, a key interlocutor who shattered many deeply rooted prejudices against Indian civilization. They accuse him of having camouflaged various alleged 'contradictions' within traditional Hinduism, and charge him with having appropriated the principles of Western religion to 'manufacture' a unified world view and a set of practices known today as Hinduism. Rajiv Malhotra offers a systematic rejoinder to such views and articulates the holographic understanding of reality that grounds Hindu dharma.



9789351771791


Philosophy, Indic
Vedas - Atharvaveda
Hinduism - Doctrines

294.52 / M2I6

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