History and Philosophy of Logic 40 (4):323-354 (2019)

Matteo Pascucci
Slovak Academy of Sciences
The Mīmāṃsā school of Indian philosophy has for its main purpose the interpretation of injunctions that are found in a set of sacred texts, the Vedas. In their works, Mīmāṃsā authors provide some of the most detailed and systematic examinations available anywhere of statements with a deontic force; however, their considerations have generally not been registered outside of Indological scholarship. In the present article we analyze the Mīmāṃsā theory of Vedic injunctions from a logical and philosophical point of view. The theory at issue can be regarded as a system of reasoning based on certain fundamental principles, such as the distinction between strong and weak duties, and on a taxonomy of ritual actions. We start by reconstructing the conceptual framework of the theory and then move to a formalization of its core aspects. Our contribution represents a new perspective to study Mīmāṃsā and outlines its relevance, in general, for deontic reasoning.
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DOI 10.1080/01445340.2019.1615366
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