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Duties and reasons
The Vidhiviveka by Maṇḍana Miśra with its commentary Nyāyakaṇikā by Vācaspati Miśra and subcommentary

Time: 3–10 July 2019, 9:00–10:30, 11:00–12:30, 14:30–15:30, 16:00–17:00
Venue: 2nd floor, room 2.25, Institute for the Cultural and Intellectual History of Asia
Hollandstraße 11-13, 1020 Vienna
Organisation: Elisa Freschi

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The Vidhiviveka of Maṇḍana (8th c. CE) is a key text for the theory of injunctions in Mīmāṃsā and in South Asian thought in general. In it, Maṇḍana explains that prescriptions are nothing but statements describing a state of affairs, namely the fact that the action prescribed is the means to attain a result the addressee covets. Maṇḍana explains how this works also in the case of orders and prohibitions.

The aim of this workshop is to finalize the critical edition and translation of the main section of the Vidhiviveka (section 8 in Elliot Stern's ongoing edition), integrating philological and philosophical research on the topic of injunctions.

Tentative program

day 1
am: section 8.0 of Vidhiviveka (46 ll. VV+NK)
pm: 8.1–8.1.1 (61 ll. VV+NK)
day 2
am: 8.1.2–8.2 (61 ll. VV+NK)
pm: 8.3 until p. 505 (49 ll. VV+NK)
day 3
am: NK on pratibhā (94 ll. NK)
pm: NK on pratibhā (whatever remains from the morning); VV 8.4 (5 ll.) + NK, 8 ll. If there is extra time, also NK 8.4.1 53 ll. (until p. 515) + 98 ll. (until p. 524), but this could be skipped, since it is at least partly off topic.
day 4
am: VV 8.5 (2 ll.), 8.6–8.6.1 (3 ll. + 9 ll.), 8.6.2 (10 ll.) + NK thereon (34 ll.)
pm: continuation of 8.6.3 (22 ll.) + beginning of the NK thereon (27 ll.), 8.6.4 (17 ll.)
day 5
am: VV 8.6.5 (7 ll. until p. 555; 11 ll. until p. 558); 8.7 (8 ll.); 8.8 (3 ll. at p. 563); continuation of 8.8 (17 ll.); 8.9 (15 ll. until p. 577)
pm: continuation of 8.9 (17 ll. until p. 580; 13 ll. until p. 583); NK with it as much as possible
day 6: discussion of selected passages or topics
Kei Kataoka (9:00–10:00), Hugo David (10:30–11:30), Parimal Patil (11:30–12:30)
Andrew Ollett (14:30–15:30), Akane Saito Maṇḍanamiśra and the Jaiminisūtra 1.2.40 (16:00–17:00)
day 7: discussion of selected passages or topics
Nilanjan Das (09:00–10:00), Larry McCrea (10:30–11:30), Kengo Harimoto (11:30–12:30)
Anand Venkatkrishnan (14:30–15:30), Mani Dravid Sastri jī (16:00–17:00)


Gosvāmi's edition of the Vidhiviveka

Elliot Stern's critical edition of the Vidhiviveka, the Nyāyakaṇikā thereon and the subcommentary Juṣadhvaṅkaraṇī.

Hugo David, Action theory and scriptural exegesis in early Advaita Vedānta (1) -- Maṇḍana Miśra on upadeśa and iṣṭasādhanatā (2013), in Vincent Eltschinger and Helmut Krasser, Scriptural Authority, Reason and Action.

Hugo David, Les origines du Vedānta comme tradition scolastique. État du problème, nouvelles hypothèses (2016), in Bulletin de l'École française d'Extrême-Orient. See especially pp. 32–37.


  • Elliot Stern
  • Daniele Cuneo
  • Nilanjan Das
  • Hugo David
  • Kengo Harimoto
  • Kei Kataoka
  • Rafal Kleczek (ISTB)
  • Charles Li
  • Lawrence McCrea
  • Sudipta Munsi (IKGA)
  • Andrew Ollett
  • Parimal Patil
  • Akane Saito
  • Anand Venkatkrishnan
  • further interested scholars from ISTB and IKGA


Please register per email to before 30 June 2019.

Öster­reichi­sche Aka­demie der Wissen­schaften
Institut für Kultur- und Geistes­geschichte Asiens
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