Microcosmology: Atom In Jain Philosophy & Modern Science ► 02 ► [2.1.2] Atom In Jain Philosophy - Metaphysical View - Realism Of Jains Deserves More Attention

Posted: 30.07.2007

Recently, however, a setback to Idealism has been observed, and staunch Idealists like Bradley are being openly challenged Idealism is now virtually condemned because it does not satisfy the philosophical curiosities. It is generally accepted that the mind, even with its active contribution is, after all, an instrument of discovery and not a creator of facts. Vedanta appears to be the perfect philosophy from the Idealistic standpoint, and Jain Philosophy, being the complete anti-thesis of Vedanta, should be entitled to equally extensive study.

New-Realism, (the real opponent of Idealism), is further intensified because it is intimately associated with modern science. Can anybody remain blind to the claim of science to be a safe means of revealing Truth, especially when it is substantiated by its achievements? Hence any system of Metaphysics, which aspires to unlock the secrets of Reality, cannot afford to totally disagree with modern science. We shall see in the following pages that the ancient Jain system of thought is more consistent with modern' science than any other Indian philosophy.

The Non-absolutist realism - Anekantavada - of Jain is, at least, 2500 years old, if not older. The discussion on physical existence in general, and atom in particular, U very exhaustive in the Jain canonical and other literature. Other Indian (and non-Indian) philosophies have not treated this subject with such thoroughness. It is, therefore, ironical that when physicists referred to ancient theories of atom, they talked about Democritus and Kanada, the profounder of Indian school of Vaisesika Philosophy, while the Jain philosophy is hardly mentioned.

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